A Classic Yet Industrial Wedding at American Spirit Works in Atlanta, Georgia
It was game day in Athens, Georgia, when Mary Claire Merlino and William Corbitt met, starting their courtship over the Georgia-Vanderbilt game they watched on television at a pub. It was an obvious set up through their mutual friends, and it worked. William, in real estate investment, proposed to Mary Claire, a commercial insurance broker, and they were married in the spring 10 months later. For the wedding, they both wore rings with their own history. Mary Claire’s wedding ring features a diamond that's been passed down from the Corbitt family since the 1800s, now set with sapphires on both sides. William wears his father’s wedding ring, engraved with his parents’ initials and the couple’s wedding date. The bride embraced the “less is more” mentality when it came to her wedding day style. She chose a classic, lace Monique Lhuillier gown and kept her hair and makeup natural and classic. She carried a bouquet of peonies, garden roses, tulips, ranunculus, anemones and white lilacs. Boutonnieres featured ivory ranunculus and the bridesmaid bouquets were a smaller version of the bride’s bunch. The mothers and grandmothers carried gardenias. Her nine bridesmaids, matron and maid of honor, and mother all wore lavender dresses in different styles from the Ceremony by Joanna August line at Bella Bridesmaids. Each bridesmaid chose the style that she was most comfortable in. The groom wore a custom-made Alton Lane tuxedo, which was special because his friend is one of the cofounders. The 13 groomsmen wore ties from Brackish Bow Ties, a Charleston, South Carolina-based company that creates unique feather bow ties, which were given to them as groomsmen gifts. Harrison Rohr of Exquisite Stationery designed the save-the-dates and wedding invitations, which had a classic and simple look. Moya Minns of MM Ink penned the calligraphy while Allison R. Banks Designs created the monogram featured on tote bags given to out-of-town guests. Paper Daisies created the extras, including ceremony programs, weekend itineraries, escort cards, menus and koozies.
Lindsay Pitt of Toast Events brought together the couple’s vision for their special day. They knew they wanted to have the ceremony at Peachtree Christian Church, which had natural beauty that required little decoration. Mary Claire fell for the reception venue before it was available—it was an art gallery that had just been purchased to become an event space. She met with the folks at American Spirit Works, a whiskey distillery, and Novare Events, its event management company, and booked it that day. “Looking back it was probably a risky move, but it felt right and turned out amazing!” Mary Claire says. The couple embraced gray, green and white tones with hints of lavender for their wedding decor. The flowers featured in Mary Claire’s bouquet were represented in the reception's table settings, which were all at varying centerpiece heights. An elaborate floral arrangement over the dance floor was a statement piece at the reception. The couple’s first dance was to “I Want a Love I Can See” by The Temptations, and the band Atlanta Showstoppers played Motown and modern hits. When guests weren’t rocking their neon MCWC hats on the dance floor, they were chowing down on bites like crab cakes and fried macaroni and cheese. The wedding cake featured three layers, each with a different flavor, including salted caramel, triple-chocolate hazelnut and amaretto white chocolate red raspberry, topped with buttercream icing. The couple ended the night with a getaway in a classic car. – Caroline Eubanks