Castleton Farms Wedding by Katherine Birkbeck Photography
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Castleton Farms Wedding by Katherine Birkbeck Photography

I am so excited to share our first wedding feature of 2014 with y’all! We’re going back to our roots a little bit with this one… bridesmaids in cowgirl boots, farm chic, rustic pretty… Katy and Casey’s Castleton Farms wedding day in Tennessee has a little bit of everything we love here at The Lovely Find.  As we focus on love stories and the diversity and grandness of the South in 2014, I can’t help but be thankful that this kind of wedding is what got “The Lovely Find” started; weddings focused on love and vows and everything it means to be married in the South.  Grab your tissues… this sweet love story will get your heart!

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How did you fall in love… become engaged?  Share your story with us!
Casey and I met on a Campus Crusade Missions Trip in Uppsala, Sweden.  I immediately started crushing on his adorable smile and laid back personality, but wasn’t interested in dating.  We spent a lot of time just getting to know each other (didn’t hurt that we were in one of the most beautiful cities in Europe).  Our group finished our trip in Rome so our first official date took place on a patio overlooking St. Peter’s Basilica.  Pretty romantic and hard to go uphill from there, but not for Casey.

We dated long distance for a year while he finished school at The University of Tennessee and I at Duke University, and then I moved to Knoxville for a new job.  That winter, Casey surprised me by having friends and family pick me up and drop me off at different locations between Knoxville and Durham, NC.  This long relay race led me to Duke Chapel where he proposed at the end of the aisle to an organist playing the wedding march.  I never thought I would get married so young, but I cannot imagine living one day without my best friend.  He makes me more loving, care-free and selfless, and shows me God’s love everyday.

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Our motto has always been, “It’s not about us,” because we feel like we are here to love others more than ourselves.  From day one of planning we thought of ways to make our guests feel loved the entire weekend.  Even though I am from Northern Virginia (no where near a farm), I have always dreamed of getting married in my mom’s cowboy boots outside near a barn (good thing I ended up engaged to a boy from East Tennessee)!  Since most of our guests were traveling to the wedding we decided to get married on Memorial Day weekend so we could have more time with them.  The weekend started off with a lingerie shower with all of my girlfriends, then our Mexican Fiesta themed rehearsal dinner, a cocktail hour for all the guests at a local hotel, and then the wedding day at Castleton Farms in Loudon, TN.  Castleton was a perfect mix of rustic touches and elegant features, and fit both of our personalities.  We got married in the carriage house gardens, had the cocktail hour on the croquet lawn (with cornhole of course), and then danced the night away in a renovated barn called the Carriage House.

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Our color palette was based on the navy bridesmaids dresses by Bill Levkoff, and then we added pops of coral, peach and ivory in the flowers.  Lisa Foster made the most beautifully bold bouquets including ivory ranunculus, coral peonies, and garden roses that perfectly contrasted with the rustic carriage house.  My dear friend designed most of our signs, and a friend also loaned us her tree stumps for the centerpieces.  My family worked together to create the wooden cross hanging at our ceremony, and my mom made all the ceremony bows and décor.  Guests highlighted their favorite bible verses in an old family bible and we had pictures of our parents and grandparents on their wedding day at the reception.  We used my grandparents’ cake topper and the toasting goblet that both my grandparents and parents used!  Our friend brewed a custom beer for our wedding and another friend designed the labels for our own “I Do Brew!”  My mother-in- law painted a canvas so everyone could sign it (instead of a guestbook).  It now hangs in our kitchen!  Everyone chipped in to make it a special day.

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Our wedding was everything we could have dreamed of: relaxed, joyful, warm, romantic, silly and fun.  The ceremony had a perfect mix of reverence as we committed ourselves to each other before God, but was also fun as we danced down the aisle to “Signed Sealed Delivered.”  Katherine Birkbeck caught every special moment, and Milestone Pictures produced the most tear-jerking video of our special day.  DJ Drew from Ogle Entertainment had all of our guests dancing from the end of the first dance until we drove away.  It was a party with glow sticks and all!

Some of our favorite touches/moments included praying through a wall so we wouldn’t see each other, running through fields taking pictures, the homemade beer (“I Do” Brew made by our friends), the incredibly thoughtful toasts from my sisters, our ice cream sundae bar from All Occasions Catering and our first dance to Ben Rector’s “Forever Like That.”  Many people warned me that I would not remember the day and it would all be a blur, but I remember and cherish every second.  The DJ played Fun’s “We Are Young” for the last song, and we had the opportunity to take in all the love as our friends and family formed one large circle around us on the dance floor.  Our wedding was a gift from God but we are even more thankful for our marriage.

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Photography: Katherine Birkbeck Photography | Videography: Milestone Pictures | Ceremony & Reception Venue: Castleton Farms | Event Planning: Darla Walker of Castleton Farms | Hair & Makeup: Bangs and Blush | Wedding Dress: Stella York | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bill Levkoff | Rentals: All Occasions Party Rentals | Music: DJ Drew with Ogle Entertainment | Catering: All Occasion Catering |  Cake/Cupcakes: Sweet Beginnings by Elaine | Invitations: Minute Man Press | Signs: Amanda McIntire | Florals: Lisa Foster Floral Design