From day one, it was long distance for Katie + Ryan. Katie’s based in Atlanta, Georgia, while Ryan is on the coast of North Carolina… They serendipitously met while she was photographing a wedding, and later that night — he asked her out to breakfast. At breakfast, she questioned, “Why’d you ask me to breakfast?” He answered with, “Why’d you say ‘yes’?” 39,632 miles could not keep these two apart. That’s how many miles the two of them drove back and forth to see each other. Katie calculated it and printed their miles out as a wedding gift to Ryan to show how far they’ve come. Literally. (So sweet, right?!) Ryan gifted her a vinyl record that had their proposal audio recorded on it, so she could listen to it over and over again on their little record player (cue the ‘awwwwws’).
The ceremony was nestled in the Sweet Meadow field, with a huge beautiful tree as the backdrop against the Georgia sunset. Katie shares Our wedding day reflected the two of us because every detail was thought out and had purpose. We both love details, so when we first got engaged we talked about how we wanted our story to be integrated into every aspect of the day: from our menus (a famous quote from our very first date), to the meal itself, to a line on our invitation referencing how we met at a wedding, to ending the night with my brother setting off fireworks (a family tradition). It was all around a reflection of us, our love, and our story.
Ready to be swept away? Let’s see all the dreamy details captured by the ever-amazing India Earl!!
To kick off the day, Katie + Ryan sent out these super cool + modern invitations — crafted by the bride + her MOH!
Keeping it neutral, we’re kind of *obsessed* with these mismatched dresses for her ‘maids! Want to recreate a similar look?
Those cascading florals on the arch are just TOO GOOD!
Processional: Fallingforyou by The 1975 Rearranged by Clayton Wyatt
Recessional: You Are Gold by The National Parks — Sung by Clayton Wyatt
First Dance: I Love How You Love Me Rearranged by Clayton Wyatt
One of our biggest dreams for our day was for it to be intimate, personal, and for every guest there to not just attend our wedding, but participate. We believe in the power of who was present and having so many of our loved ones from all over (literally, all over) gathered in a circle around us celebrating, supporting, and empowering our love was something we will cherish always.
When I think back on the day, there are two moments that stand out the most to me. First being the moment we declared our vows to one another. We both wrote our own vows and neither of us had heard the words the other wrote until that moment. It was so significant and truly an indescribably beautiful time. I mean really, that's the whole reason why the whole party was thrown, for that one moment. The moment we gave ourselves to one another.
The second most memorable moment of the day would be dinner! During the whole planning process whenever someone asked me what I looked most forward to I always responded "eating!" To think of having all our closest family and friends gathered around tables, passing plates, and sharing life with each other made my heart want to melt! Our whole relationship was long distance and so we both had truly found a home within each other's communities. The idea of having both of our communities gathered as one in the same place seriously seemed like it couldn't be real. I wanted dinner to be slow — a process, and a treat for our guests. I wanted to soak it up, to be present, and to truly celebrate with all of those that were there!
We also had a killer breakfast menu in honor of Ryan taking me out to breakfast for our first date. Plus, who doesn't love breakfast for dinner?
Are you crushing on Katie’s dress as much as us? Good news — it’s the Monica Gown from BHLDN!
Do you. There are hundreds of things out there telling you what your wedding should look like, putting "rules" and "regulations" to the day. But you'll never regret going with what feels like you two. Truth is, there aren't any "rules" to YOUR wedding day. Set your vision and build a wall around it to protect it. And just soak it up. Contrary to popular belief, planning a wedding can be an incredibly sweet time and not a stressful one. So soak it up, love on those who are supporting and helping you, and make your day about your love - not the stuff.
A note about the music: The song I walked down the aisle to was a surprise for Ryan. After the first time Ryan drove 7 hours to visit me in Atlanta, he sent me a letter in the mail the following week. On the back of the envelope he wrote the song, “Fallingforyou by the 1975” for me to listen to while reading his letter. Ever since, that has been such a sweet song to us. If you’re familiar with the song you know that it is highly produced and I really wanted to scratch the track for the processional and make the song acoustic. Our friend Clayton Wyatt absolutely nailed the arrangement! Seriously, it was such a special surprise for Ryan and a fun memory for us. Clayton also rearranged a song we love called, “I Love How You Love Me,” and added a line fro one of his own songs for our first dance… The line? “We have so much more falling in love to do.”
One of my most favorite details of our day was the dress I wore for our reception. From top to bottom, the dress was my mom’s wedding dress! It was seriously so special. I had a vision of taking my mom’s dress and completely modernizing it. We’re talking puffy sleeves, deep V waist line, the whole shebang! My real life fairy godmother, my aunt Kandy, was able to make all my crazy ideas come true by taking the whole dress apart, cutting it in half, and remaking it. You guys, she did so much work to this dress. It truly was remarkable. So just because your mom’s dress is dusty and terribly unflattering – don’t let that stop you from implementing it into your wedding day!
A sparkler exit for good measure!! Katie + Ryan, congratulations! That was one EPIC event, and we couldn’t be happier for you two. Lots of love, you guys!
photography: India Earl // venue name: Sweet Meadow, Tallapoosa, Georgia, USA // wedding dress: BHLDN Monica Gown // bride's shoes: Bryr // bridesmaid dresses: Nordstrom and Free People // calligraphy: The Bride and Maid of Honor