Intimate Gallery Wedding

Abby & Josh

Franklin, TN

Wedding Date: October 1, 2011

Number of Guests: 35

Wedding Cost: $23,000

Wedding Ceremony Location: The Brownstones Courtyard in Franklin, TN

Wedding Reception Location: Gallery 202

bride and groom in front of brownstone mixed flower wedding bouquet

red and green rose bouquet

sunflower and mixed flower bridal bouquet

hanging flower arrangements lining outdoor wedding aisle

wooden folding chairs at outdoor wedding ceremony

mixed flower wedding bouquet

wedding cake beneath chandelier

Why did you have an intimate wedding?

We originally were planning a big wedding, but once our guest list reached 350+ and the stress set in, we decided to reassess our decision. We had already asked our attendants, so we came to the conclusion we should only invite our attendants (with dates), immediate family and grandparents. It was a hard decision, but the intimate wedding was less stressful, less money and the people that will be in our lives forever were there.

black and white bride and groom

bride and groom hiding behind top hat

bride wearing top hat

groom kissing bride wearing top hat

What are some of the challenges that you faced planning an intimate wedding?

Not being able to invite some of our close friends that we do see often was hard. There were probably 15 people that I wish we could have had there out of our friends. Obviously, I wish we could have had our extended families there, but we both have huge families. The other challenge was scaling down everything to accommodate 37 people (with us). When buying alcohol and doing rentals, we kept looking at each other going – it’s only 37 people.

ruched wedding gown hanging up

wedding gown hanging up in window

wedding dress hanging up in bedroom

pearl necklace on black suede wedding shoes

bride in strapless wedding gown and pearl necklace

bride with flower girls wearing white dresses

wedding cellist and violinist

Was it difficult to pare down the guest list?

It was really hard to pare it down, but once we decided to go with attendants, immediate family and grandparents, we just couldn’t stray from that.

bridesmaids buttoning up bride's dress

bride getting ready

bride and her bridesmaids

groom getting ready

black and white couple portrait

black and wedding portrait

bridal party wearing black in front of brownstone

bridal party portrait in front of brownstones

bridal party wearing black

bride and groom portrait

Did you have any ‘issues’ with the small guest list from friends and family? If so, how did you address them?

YES! Oh my gosh, people would make comments about how they were upset they weren’t invited. Also, even when I told people that it was going to be 35 people, they would assume they were still included. My mom kept asking to invite this person or that person, but we just said no. If we opened it up to one person, it would be a mess. It was honestly really hard on us, but we just kept saying that we were private people and that a big wedding was just too stressful and too expensive. We figure if people don’t understand our decision then they aren’t that supportive of us to begin with.

bridesmaids with mixed flower bouquets

groomsmen in black suits

bride and groom with vintage pick-up truck

bride and groom portrait in front of vintage pick-up truck

black and white couple portrait with vintage pick-up truck

bridal party portrait with vintage pick-up truck

bride with large mixed flower bouquet

bride portait in the park

laughing bride portrait

bride wearing pearl necklace

bridesmaid in black dress

What were the highlights of the ceremony?

The ceremony only had 24 chairs, so the best part about it was we knew every single person sitting there. We didn’t feel like there were strangers watching our extremely private moment. Also, the flowers were amazing! I decided to get rose petals down the sides of the aisle which made it so pretty! We couldn’t have afforded little details like that with a big wedding.

hanging flower arrangement in mercury glass

small mixed flower wedding bouquet

flower girl basket filled with rose petals

rose petal lined outdoor wedding aisle

wooden folding chair at outdoor wedding reception

hanging flower arrangements at outdoor wedding ceremony

flower girls wearing white walking down aisle

bride and groom saying vows in front of fountain

What were the highlights of the reception?

My dad’s toast, which everyone could hear and see. My grandfather’s blessing of the food, where everyone stood around the food table. Also, the fact that I could talk to everyone there and that I could soak in the beautiful decor, flowers, food, cake, etc. Many brides tell me they were rushing around so much with a big wedding, they didn’t even get to enjoy anything.

art gallery wedding reception

art gallery wedding reception table setting

wedding appetizers

wedding appetizers on burlap covered table

open wedding bar

black and white wedding cake surrounded by orange flowers

wedding guest at art gallery reception

wedding guest with sculptural installation

wedding light installation

light installation at wedding reception

white paper lantern hanging in reception tent

wedding guests on dance floor

black and white wedding cake with flowers on top

guests at art gallery wedding reception

What was the best thing about having an intimate wedding?

The best thing about having an intimate wedding was the decreased level of stress (financial and planning stress) and the quality time we got to spend with the people throughout the wedding process. Also, that we really got to go all-out on all the details we wanted instead of settling because of cost.

wedding portrait in the park

bride and groom hugging

wedding rings in sunflower

mixed flower flower arrangement in mercury glass vase

What advice do you have for couples who are considering an intimate wedding?

I would highly recommend an intimate wedding. You will have to be strong throughout the process and try to ignore the not so supportive comments. Also, having a short engagement helps.

bride and groom kissing in front of brownstone

bride and groom portrait

bride and groom in front of antique store

bride and groom kissing on antique store steps

antique store portrait

antique store bridal portrait

bride and groom portrait on stone steps


Wedding: The Brownstone Courtyard

Reception: Gallery 202

Flowers: Garden Delights

Food: Red Pony

Cake: Dulce Desserts

Dress: Lea Ann Belter

Rentals: Southern Events

Photography: Evin Photography