Classic Southern Wedding by Katherine O’Brien Photography
Posted by Kate. Filed under Real Weddings

Mary Kate and John’s Austin wedding has that feeling of the classic South, yet the color palette and details were perfectly unique.  We were taken by the blues and greens, and of course the beautiful Barr Mansion setting.  Katherine O’Brien did an extraordinary job capturing the day in creative film and digital photos!  Each bridesmaid selected her own ivory dress, but they were coordinated with blue ribbon and the gorgeous hydrangea and succulent bouquets by  STEMS Floral Design.  Love those blue nails in the pic below!Mary Kate and John first bonded over a similar taste in music and they definitely had music on the mind as they planned their day.  During the ceremony, Barton Strings played Over the Rainbow for the processional and Here Comes the Sun for the recessional.   Along with their officiant, Sarah de la Fuente, the two designed a custom ceremony that spoke to them.  They said their vows on the scenic grounds of the Barr Mansion.  The reception, held in the Barr Mansion’s modern ballroom, featured a rainbow of rustic florals and lots of dancing to local Austin band, Soul Track Mind.  Their music was a hit with guests!Mary Kate and John married on what would have been her grandparents’ 61st wedding anniversary.  To honor them, she baked 700 peanut butter cookies (her grandmother’s recipe) to give to guests as favors!

Read more from the bride just below or {click here} to see the full feature…

Photos by Katherine O’Brien Photography

Venue, Event Coordination & Cake by Barr Mansion

Bride’s Hair & Makeup by Snodene Blakenely

Bridal Gown by Modern Trousseau from Unbridaled

Invitations & Programs by Bella Figura

Ceremony Musicians: Barton Strings

Officiant: Sarah de la Fuente

Florals by STEMS Floral Design

Reception Band: Soul Track Mind

From the Bride:

The weather was perfect considering the summer we had. The week of our wedding was the first break we had from 100+ degree temperatures all summer long.

One of my favorite moments of the day was seeing for the first time the bouquets that Abby Daigle of STEMS put together. When we met to discuss the flowers, I didn’t have a concrete idea of what I wanted. I told her the colors that I wanted in my bouquet and the bridesmaids’ bouquets and she was able to help me pick out some flowers that would include all those colors. Then she took it from there and put together the perfect bouquets. I could not have been happier with them!

We were very glad we chose to see each other before the ceremony. It calmed our nerves. And despite the fact that our wedding party was all watching with our photographers Katherine and Jeff taking pictures, it was still a very personal moment.

My father has a huge baseball card collection from his childhood that he has kept in great condition over the years. On the day of the wedding he gave John, John’s father, and his groomsmen each a baseball card from his collection. They were all cards of Red Sox players as John and his groomsmen all grew up in the Boston area and love the Red Sox.  John and the guys also toasted with John’s favorite whiskey before our first look photos.

I gave John Ghostbuster cufflinks the day of the wedding. It has been his favorite movie since he was a child. His grandmother has lots of stories of him pretending to be a Ghostbuster when he was younger.

The ballroom where our reception was held was newly built, finished just a few months before our wedding. Just before we got engaged in June of 2010, lightning struck the original Barr Mansion ballroom and burned it to the ground. It had been a beautiful structure and was a huge loss for Barr Mansion. Right away they set out to begin the rebuilding process. We were confident that they would rebuild it to be just as beautiful as the original. And they did!

Although we wanted a short ceremony, we wanted it to be meaningful to us. We chose Sarah de la Fuente to officiate our wedding because she was more than happy to help us write a ceremony that spoke to us. It was really special to know that we didn’t just write our own vows, but helped create the entire ceremony.

John and I bonded over similar tastes in music when we first met, so it was important to us to have a great band for our reception. In Austin we have a great local band called Soul Track Mind and we were thrilled that they agreed to play at our reception. Our guests could not stop complimenting them long after the wedding was over.

Our friends and family gave some great toasts during the reception. Most were planned but a few folks jumped up on stage without warning, including the father of one of my bridesmaids who told us to “live long and prosper.” John’s brother (and best man) also read a beautiful poem written by their grandfather for our wedding, as he was not able to make the trip from Massachusetts.

One of the funnier moments of the night was towards the end of the reception. My father and his friends have a history of dancing the Gator as they do in the movie Animal House during each other’s wedding receptions. They continued the tradition at our reception when our band played the Isley Brothers’ “Shout.” They were a huge hit.

As a result of the hot, dry weather we had all summer we were in a burn ban so we could not have a sparkler send off at the end of the night. In place of sparklers we bought a few hundred glow sticks. John and I have gone to quite a few concerts where we threw around glow sticks so it was very appropriate for us.

We did not want to take on a lot of little DIY projects for our wedding, mostly because the Barr Mansion grounds really don’t need much in the way of decorations. But I did know I wanted to honor my paternal grandparents as we were getting married on what would have been their 61st wedding anniversary. My grandmother was a great cook and our favorite treats growing up were her cookies, specifically molasses cookies and peanut butter cookies. So the week of the wedding, using her recipes, my sisters, bridesmaids, and I made over 700 cookies as favors for our guests. It ended up being quite a project but I am glad we did it!

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