virginia weddings

Real Virginia Wedding Wednesday: Heather & Logan

This week, our real Virginia weddings story comes from Heather and Logan, post-college friends who became so much more.

Heather says, “Logan and I both went to Radford University at the same time and had a ton of mutual acquaintances, but (somehow) never officially friended each other until after college. We even went camping with the same group during college and have a photo of both of us in it but have absolutely no memory of ever meeting each other. I graduated in May 2014, and he graduated in May 2015. Around the Spring of 2016, I went to a bar with some friends, and we happened to run into some people that we used to hang out with at Radford. One of these friends said ‘Hey! You should meet my friend Logan!’  Logan came up behind him and introduced himself. We talked and hung out for a little bit, but then I left without exchanging phone numbers. About three weeks later, I received a text message from a random number, and it happened to be Logan. Apparently right after that night, Logan asked a friend for my number and was texting me. He didn’t realize that for three weeks, he was messaging the wrong number and that’s why his texts were being ignored. He finally got the right number and tried one more time. And the rest is history…”

“Logan used to rent a house with three other friends from Radford that is located directly across from the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, which is where we had our first date. I met him at his house and we walked together to the museum. We walked around the museum and both attempted to pretend to be cultured in art (we are not, lol). Luckily, we gave up pretenses and grabbed a bottle of wine at the museum café, took it to the outdoor lawn, and talked about our families, college, and other topics to get to know each other more. Unfortunately for my (now) husband, one of the most memorable moments is him slipping down stone steps and instinctively grabbing me for support, resulting in us both falling and almost tumbling down the entire flight of stairs. We found it hilarious, and I still like to remind him of the time he almost took us down a flight of stairs on our first date. Don’t worry, he has redeemed himself since.”

The Scoop

Bride: Heather, 30, Office Supervisor

Groom: Logan, 29, Claims Adjuster

Wedding date: October 8, 2022

Number of guests: 105

As they planned their wedding, they felt “it was important that we were able to support small businesses. So, most of the décor and items you see are from Etsy and local businesses. Our wedding cake came from Carrot Tree Kitchen, located in Williamsburg. Logan grew up in Williamsburg and their carrot cake is his favorite, so we were very happy to incorporate them into our wedding. All the signage, centerpieces and our bouquets, corsages and boutonnieres came from various small business that I found on Etsy. A very huge shoutout to all the small businesses below that helped make this wedding happen!”

“I found my dress at Tiffany’s Bridal in Richmond. The dress is white, full lace with a long train and buttons going down the back. I chose the dress because it had everything I wanted in a dress; a train, buttons, and lace with a pattern that reminded me of autumn. I work in Public Accounting, so our wedding date fell directly in the middle of tax busy season. Since I was so busy juggling work and wedding planning, I didn’t realize until a week before that I forgot to order shoes, jewelry, and a veil! I quickly ordered my shoes from Lulus and my jewelry from Olive & Piper. I could not find a veil that I liked that would come in time and started to panic until one of my great friends offered to let me borrow her veil from her wedding. Needless to say, I had also forgotten the whole ‘something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’ tradition, but after trying on my friend’s veil, I realized it was the same one I tried on at Tiffany’s Bridal when saying yes to my dress! I wore the veil on my wedding day, and it ended up working out perfectly.”

For the bridal party, they chose the color taupe in crepe fabric from Birdy Grey. “The bridesmaids got to choose any style dress that they preferred, and we really loved Birdy Grey because each dress is affordable with all styles under $100.”

“We really wanted to incorporate fall wedding colors, so you will see a lot of shades of taupe, green, oranges and reds in a soft, light tone. We also wanted an outdoor wedding in proximity of the Richmond area but not within city limits, so we could spread out and have a large tent for the reception. Amber Grove was the first venue we visited and we fell in love immediately. There is a sense of warmth the second you walk in and the owner, John McBride, makes it feel like home and will talk to you like you’re an old friend coming to visit. The venue has a gorgeous outdoor space with options for an indoor wedding in case the weather does not cooperate. The venue offers an outdoor ceremony underneath a 200-year-old oak tree or you can also hold it inside of the barn. We knew Amber Grove was ‘it’ and didn’t look at any other venues. John made the entire process extremely easy and fun. From recommending vendors to offering décor he had collected over the years, John also served as the wedding planner we didn’t know we needed.”

“Our guests were primarily family (including out of town travelers) and friends that we met at Radford University. We were very fortunate that most everyone was able to attend, even with Covid-19 still looming. The pandemic has been tough on everyone, and we were overwhelmed with love and gratefulness that our guests were able to celebrate this monumental day with us, which we expressed during the reception in a heartfelt Welcome Speech.”

“It was important to us that our family and friends enjoyed our wedding as much as we did, so instead of focusing on minor details, throwing an epic reception was really our “north star” for the big day. We are immensely grateful to the people surrounding us and supporting us and wanted to create a space for our guests to have fun, and consciously tried to avoid any potential burdens on our guests. We booked our hotel block in downtown Richmond, which is walking distance to many restaurants and sites for our guests to visit during the weekend and more importantly, booked charter buses to take everyone to and from the venue, so they were able to enjoy the entire day (and libations) without worrying about transportation. We stepped away from tradition and had fun creating a seating chart that paired groups of people whose personalities would mesh well, even if they hadn’t met or weren’t from the same “clique”. We had a phenomenal DJ and Master of Ceremonies, who kept an upbeat vibe and generated crowd excitement throughout the ceremony. Paired with an amazing playlist, we had a relaxed yet upbeat atmosphere, which was our goal.”

“Our wedding décor was very simplistic and cozy. We incorporated candles in our centerpieces and all our décor is either from Etsy or from the venue itself, so it created a warm and simple setting.”

Heather offers this advice to fellow brides and couples planning their big day:

“During the beginning stages of wedding planning, Logan and I sat down and asked each other ‘When you picture yourself on our wedding day, what part of the day are you imagining? What areas are more important to you than other areas? What are some things that you would really like to incorporate?’ We then made a list and built around it and then everything else started falling into place. We both imagined ourselves dancing and laughing during the reception, so we knew we wanted to focus on creating a really fun and hilarious reception surrounded by all of our family and friends.  Logan mentioned that his favorite cake is from Carrot Tree Kitchen, so we already had our wedding cake picked out. Items like flowers were not a huge priority to me, so it only took one day to pick out silk bouquets from Etsy and use candles as our centerpieces. Accommodating our guests was a priority, so we made sure to have extra details like a snack station at the close of our reception. Identifying what was mutually important to each of us early on made the process so much easier and led to a wedding that was true to ourselves instead of what a wedding planning book told us we needed. People receive a lot of (sometimes unsolicited) opinions during wedding planning and see trends that can distract from the actual wants of the couple. Our tried-and-true advice is to create an event that best emulates the unique goals, personalities, and overall vibe of YOU and your significant other, not what tradition or social media leads you to believe is expected.”

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The author: rita

Rita Juanita Pike is the granddaughter of aviatrix, Jerrie Mock, first woman to pilot an airplane around the world. Rita has taken inspiration from her grandmother’s life and flight and pursued many of her own dreams in theatre, podcasting, novel writing, and cooking up delicious food from around the world. She now writes on food, travel, pets, faith, and the arts. She’s happily married to Matt, and faithfully serves the very fluffy kitten queen, Lady Stardust.