Wedding Raising

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Brooke and Mike

A Simply Southern Wedding          
III: The Wedding Raising
Planning Ahead 

Part I:  Simply Southern Wedding
Simply Southern Wedding Part II
Part II:  Parties and Showers
Part III: The Wedding Raising:  Planning Ahead
Part IV:  The Wedding Raising:  Implementation
Part IV:  A Simply Southern Wedding


Since this would be the last wedding we would "throw", it was our youngest daughter marrying, I really wanted it to be a truly southern family and friends event.  While a wedding is the celebration of the sacramental uniting of two people, for the mother of the bride it is also the humbling and rewarding dependence on dear friends who come together offering the support of their friendship. Knowing it was not possible to accomplish all of the ideas I wanted to create in the garden I had weeded, watered, edged, mowed and planted, battling drought, water restrictions, blisters and poison ivy, I decided to throw a "wedding-raising." Barn-raisings used to be commonplace. Their purpose was to accomplish a single goal in a very short time and the activity bonded and nourished friendships as a byproduct. Using "barn-raisings" as my inspiration, I issued the invitation to a "wedding-raising." Fortunately, among my friends are some of the most gifted designers in Dothan.


III. Preparation--I created several charts in preparation for the wedding in an attempt to organize the orchestration of this event. 

A.  Plan Ahead:  Plant for the future Real preparation for having a garden event begins with the first landscaping plan one has for their garden.  My mother in law began the preparation by including evergreens, sasanqua, and magnolias.  Fortunately I had added plenty of pittosporum, magnolia, palms, ivy and aspidistra which now grew in the yard from which we could gather more of what we needed. Swamp daisies, Mexican petunias, sasanqua, coral vine, goldenrod, and roses (Knockout and tea) grew in abundance.

B.  The Garden plan:  Our home consists of a Monterrey style colonial home set on hill with a two acre lot.  In the six months between when our daughter and her fiance set the date for their wedding, I think I crawled over all of those two acres pulling weeds and planting flowers.  Then came the drought and the water limitations and there went my dream for a lush garden.  However, the basic bones of the garden showed through with enough beauty to be welcoming to our guests.  In designing the garden for the wedding, I drew up a basic outline of our garden.  In my mind I envisioned the way it would eventually look and the pictures included here in the plan show how well the "envisioning" evolved.

Back yard  Garden Layout for Reception 


 North Iroquois








Entrance/back gate



Bench and pots entry

Rose garden


Boiled Peanut Area

3 Smoking area

Eric Newman will offer his special cigars for a "Smoker"  Decorate as a "Man Cave"


Arbor 1


4 Garden Area



2 Arbor


Ribbons on children’s swing




12 1n 13 tables under oak

                                                                        1 long  Table

Tall blue wine bottles with flowers


 arbor                                         Croquet set up                                               

                           P1000993.jpg picture by brookie018                                          2 Table 4


      Main entrance into courtyard area

                                                      Arbor 4





   3   Arbor









Mickey Minnie Mouse Wedding Cake


Children’s table






Music System         




Heart wreath above gazing globe






Long     Music System

camellias floating in bird bath


 table  9 Bistro Table    8 Bistro

for                              Table 


party          Tent in center28 chairs      


      10 Bistro table   11 bistro table



Ping pong
Buffet           Silver epergne with 24 pink roses      

Floral chandelier

Epergne with 2 doz roses

Coffee Bar




Patio              7 Table (4)6 Round Table
with ext. 8

                 Sofa and chairs


Sweetheart table

Unity Candle decoration




3 Table 4




Pool area

4 Table 4         5  Table 4     

 Entrance to Library  blessing tree


Flower Bed BEM

Sunroom  Bar 

We opened the windows on both sides of the sunroom and wound up with 2 bar tenders and  double access to the bar.  Mums in tall wine bottles

Entrance                                                                                                             Entrance                                                             Memory Tree outside Library door




Small bouquet in bathroom










12 pink roses Dining room

Roses in epergne



Small bouquet Entry Hall in 12 pink roses in pink brides basket

Living Room



Wedding Cake


 Grooms Cake

Library white roses in brides basket



Front door




Balcony Garland centered above front door 12 roses center 12 on either wide with ivy garland

The Zen of Bubbles



Here in the front walking up to the house, there will be a garland with central flower arrangement and two  flanking arrangements above the front door.  The brick walk will have water-filled glass jars as luminaries.  The central flowers will probably be camellias and sasanquas from our yards. 

 North Cherokee Avenue

        C.  What do we have/What do we need?
I then set about figuring what I had to use and where I would acquire other items I would need.

 We have: 3 patio tables with 4 chairs each

3 bistro tables with 6 chairs

1 kitchen table with 6 chairs (Back patio table )

2 head chairs from dining room (Sweetheart Table)

13 card table chairs for attendants tables

3 bridge tables

6 game table chairs

 2 Children’s Table   use picnic table to serve.  Use Beatrix Potter for sitting.


From where?




Who responsible?

Sweetheart table

Small glass table


Candleabra from Bayou  Bride’s bouquet

Chairs from dining room


Bridal party


Pans and Petals

Bridesmaid’s bouquets and candles



Tables 12 and 13

Pew buckets





Tables 9-11

Dancing area

4 Pew Buckets

4 P and P

Pew Buckets and candles but filled with hydrangea and fern


Sharman and Mike

Tables 3 – 7

Patio pool

Glass Engagement


Engagement glass vases and candles



Table 1and 2

Blue bottles and flowers


Blue toile table cloth



Buffet outside

Also altar arrangement

24 Red roses in epergne

P and P




Coffee Bar







Use tall blue wine bottles with flowers for decoration in this transition room.












Dining room



1 dozen antique white roses in Grandmother R epergne



Brides cake

Round table in center of living room with jeweled table cloth  provided by Pans and Petals


P and P

Arrangement back on fern stand (cut glass vase with hydrangea and calla lilies)Pink hydrangea and white calla lilies



Groom’s Cake






Library table



Bride’s basket ( 12  roses)



Children’s table







Tulle and bows





3 Gates

Tulle and bows




















Tulle and bows





Lamp post

Tulle and bows





Mail box

Tulle and bows





Saw horses

Tulle and bows





Christmas lights along fence and arbor
























We cut pictures out of magazines and from websites to give us ideas. 

        D.  The Schedule

I set up a schedule of the flowers that had to be done and when. 

To be done

Floral arrangements for inside of house



Wednesday, October 24

Limes,hydrangea and callas in cut glass


Altar and living room


Green apples, hydrangea and cannas in cut glass


Altar and Living room


Burson epergne

2 doz white roses/fern



Ramsey epergne

1 doz  roses /fern, pineapple, coral vine, lorapetalum

Dining Room


Pink brides basket


Entry hall


Silver brides basket




Pewter cupid guest bath


Guest Bath


Yellow paperweight entry hall


Entry Hall


Arrangement below mirror in cut glass bowl


Entry hall


Arrangement in cut glass on hall tree


Hall tree





Friday afternoon

Headpieces and baskets





Floral headpiece 12 roses and ivy

Flower girl Basket


Mary Elle

Floral headpiece

Rice bag basket



Floral headpiece

Rice bag basket













Friday Morning

Tussie Mussies





3 roses, ivy and baby’s breath in wet oasis inside of tussie mussie.


























Friday Afternoon

Calla lily bouquet





1 doz calla lilies wrapped with floral tape and then wrapped with 2 " white satin ribbon.  Pearl top pins extend from top to bottom extending down.





 The hydrangea bouquet was tied exactly like the calla bouquet was tied.  Remember to condition well--crush the stem and keep in ice water until needed.  Refresh with ice water.


Hydrangea bouquets

3 hydrangea





Tied with blue ribbon




Tied with brown ribbon

























Friday afternoon

Headpieces and baskets





Floral headpiece 6 roses and ivy.  Measure head and connect pipe stems to secure roses.  Use smaller roses than these.  Secure with wire and then cover with floral tape.  Next time I do this, I will use tiny sweetheart roses and make sure there are no thorns or pieces of wire that can escape.   While this is beautiful, it was uncomfortable for my little flower girl.

Flower girl Basket


Mary Elle

Floral headpiece

Rice bag basket



Floral headpiece

Rice bag basket














Paulette Clardy




Elizabeth Brown








Cake cutters












Mike, the Groom

 Stick wire through neck of rose and then wind around stem.  Cover with floral tape and then cover with 1" white satin ribbon.























Bryan Hall
















Duncan (ring bearer)



I had the best of intentions, but unfortunately time became a serious issue as we got down to the wire and some of those items I had intended to make did not get made.  Fortunately, I had prioritized them and what needed to be done was done.

Brooke and her bridesmaids dressed in her bedroom and prepared to walk down the stairs I'd always envisioned a bride walking down, out of our home and into a life on her own. 



Arrangements for the inside of the house were created the day the flowers arrived.  This antique epergne makes a beautiful dining room arrangement.



You can learn more about the cigar company of the Newman family, Lyris, Eric and Drew, at their website: .  They have begun a very important mission in the Dominican Republic you really should become aware of.  I am so proud and happy I am for my dear friend, Lyris Bruce Newman, her happiness with the fine man she married, the fine son she has raised, and the contribution she has made to making the world a better place.  I sit here with tears in my eyes, thanking God for my wonderful friend. 

A. G. Branch--BuzzOff Mosquito (334 797-2960)


Copyright 1996  These are my own working genealogy files that I share with you.  The errors are my own.  But, perhaps they will give you a starting point.  All original writing is copyrighted.  Webmaster

Copyright 1996  These are my own working genealogy files that I share with you.  The errors are my own.  But, perhaps they will give you a starting point.  All original writing is copyrighted.  Webmaster

Copyright 1996  These are my own working genealogy files that I share with you.  The errors are my own.  But, perhaps they will give you a starting point.  All original writing is copyrighted.  Webmaster