An Elegant, Modern Wedding with Coastal Flair at the Historic Rice Mill in Charleston, South Carolina
For their early September nuptials, Shayna Simmons (28 and a campus recruiter) and Joshua Bulluck (30 and a network analyst) headed to Charleston, SC to celebrate with their families and friends. “Charleston is where we took our first vacation together as a couple and we fell in love with the city,” says Shayna. “So when it came time to decide where to get married, our friends and family spanning the country, a destination wedding of sorts was a given and what better place than the very city fell in love in?” With the location squared away, the couple started on their search for a venue that reflected Charleston’s rustic charm and elegance. The Historic Rice Mill checked all boxes for the pair, with its beautiful brick facade, waterfront location and classic design. A color palette of navy blue, silver and white with hints of mint brought a timeless, yet modern edge to the day’s decor. “We love the classic and timeless feel navy brings to the table and with our venue being on the Charleston waterfront, we wanted to incorporate a coastal feel into our wedding,” says Shayna.
With the stately architecture of the Historic Rice Mill as their backdrop, Shayna and Josh exchanged vows in a ceremony officiated by Josh’s father at the front of the historic venue under the shade of two oak trees as their friends and families looked on. The pair kept the decor to a minimum, allowing guests to appreciate the venue’s old world charm, adding only a few vintage-inspired carriage lanterns warmly lit by flickering candlelight to the aisle. Close friends helped the couple put a personal twist on the ceremony through song and spoken word. “We had a close friend sing Stevie Wonder’s ‘As,’ another close friend read Corinthians 1:13 and my sister’s godfather wrote and performed a spoken word poem for us,” says Shayna. Before heading inside for cocktail hour and the reception, Shayna and Josh closed the ceremony by jumping the broom.
The reception festivities kicked off with cocktail hour on the patio, where guests sipped on signature cocktails like Elderflower Old Fashioneds and St. Germaine, Hendricks and soda and took in views of the Charleston waterfront. Silver sequined table linens and metallic accents paired with sleek, modern lounge furniture to inject the open-air space with a festive, glamorous vibe. Back in the dining room, Shayna and Josh went for modern elegance, with crisp white and navy linens, varying arrangements of fresh white calla lilies and orchids and silvery carriage lanterns that twinkled with warm candlelight. Self-declared wine aficionados, the couple incorporated subtle vineyard-inspired touches throughout the decor, from wine varietal table names to bottles of cabernet and pinot grigio from a family friend’s own vineyard on each table. “At one point during the reception, we announced that one person at each table had a star sticker on the inside of their place card,” says Shayna. “That person got to take the bottle of wine home with them!” After dinner, Darby Events got guests up out of their seats and onto the dance floor, while Ben Keys from Wed On Canvas, recreated scenes on canvas from earlier that day. A tip for the taking from Shayna: “Don't ever stop having fun! Stay true to you and your better half!”