Mary & Brien 

by Lauren Crownover  |  photos by Fisher Adventures & Imagery

These two wonderful souls could not wait to get married- so much so that they had a THREE month engagement. Mary approached me nearly immediately, understandably anxious. I affirmed her that the day would still be beautiful, no matter how short or long her engagement. 

That presented a challenge in finding a venue, however. Mary and Brien asked around, and the ceremony was held in the backyard of a dear friend's house, on a beautiful fall Tennessee day. The leaves had started to change, and the temperature was absolutely perfect for an outdoor wedding. We used fall foliage to accent the decor Mary had brought. The lace used for the tables was a family heirloom, and was perfect for the home-wedding feel.


Since the notice to family was short, the rehearsal was held the morning of the wedding. Everyone was in such high spirits, laughing and joking (the bride and groom were such goofballs), and everyone pitched in to make Mary and Brien feel totally at rest. Mary and her bridesmaids all wore flannel- another perfect touch to this backyard wedding!


Wedding coordinating comes with all kinds of perks- but I think one of the best is being able to give the bride and groom space and time to reflect upon the day, even in the middle of a wedding with hundreds of people in attendance. I love creating little pockets in the wedding day timeline where I can sequester them off alone, so that they can simply breathe and take in the majesty of what  just happened (and eat some of that food they paid for).

First looks are one of those opportunities. Even though there were family members still around from the morning rehearsal, we were able to give Mary and Brien a completely private first look- and they had so much fun. These two are absolute goofballs, and I loved seeing the pictures of them being truly themselves.


For the bridal party, Mary decided that they would wear long chiffon skirts and floral tops. The groomsmen went without jackets, since it was a casual affair. 


One of my favorite things about weddings nowadays is how open-ended they are. Gone are the days when one had to provide a plated dinner for guests, or do a bouquet toss, or freeze the top tier of the wedding cake. Enter the days of potluck weddings, elopements, and sundae bars. 

Knowing that there was not much time to plan, Mary and Brien were concerned about what "kind" of reception to have. Should they have finger foods only? Did they need to provide a full meal? What about the traditional cake-cutting? 

When Mary came to me with these questions, I reminded her what I remind all of my brides- your wedding is about one thing: you and your groom. Everything else is secondary. You don't need to do all these "traditional" things for your wedding to be glorious. Just the two of you getting married is enough. So, Mary and Brien decided to have coffee and donuts at their wedding, and wow, it was perfect and the donuts were delicious!


Near the end of the afternoon, Mary approached me and told me that she wanted to sing a hymn with everyone before they left. So we gathered everyone on the patio and had Nate Evans, the ceremony musician, lead the worship time. It was such a sweet moment to end the wedding with, and I'm glad Mary thought of it last minute! After the hymn, they were sent off through a tunnel of loving hands and hearts. 


Congratulations, Mr. and Mrs. Pafford!