A Sophisticated Garden Wedding at The Weymouth Center in Southern Pines, North Carolina
Despite his unattractive attire, Ben Thayer (31 and a civil engineer) caught the attention of Sarah Carrington (31 and an investor relations associate) at a holiday ugly sweater party. "I was immediately drawn to his enthusiasm, charm, and -- naturally -- his mop of curly hair," says Sarah. "He had donned the ugliest sweater in the room, and I was surprised to learn how much we had in common!" After quickly winning over Sarah's cat, Ben popped the question on Sarah's 30th birthday before a fancy dinner out. The following year, the pair invited guests to a sophisticated estate soiree at The Weymouth Center in Southern Pines, North Carolina. "We love being outside and wanted to be surrounded by as much natural beauty as possible," says Sarah. "This lovely estate was built in the 1900s and is enclosed by grand woods, which set the scene perfectly." Sarah's first job out of college was as a bridal consultant at Vera Wang, so it was important for her to find a one-of-a-kind dress and fell in love with her strapless Prestigio by Manuel Mota gown while browsing through a bridal magazine. "My gown is truly a piece of art, with two layers of gathered tulle underneath a final layer fully hemmed with handmade tulle roses," says Sarah. "I felt like royalty on my big day!" In order to achieve a classic, casually elegant feel, Sarah worked with a peach and turquoise color palette. Antique vases and bloomed rose buds filled their tented reception, and an exposed wood head table popped against the blue linens. In honor of their hometowns, the bride and groom worked to incorporate a “North meets South” theme. Since the wedding was in North Carolina, tables were named after towns in Massachusetts, and instead of a traditional guest book, the couple had a framed map and encouraged guests to sign their names on their current states. "An important part of our relationship is our shared love for both Massachusetts and North Carolina, so we included local details throughout our celebration."