After the Vows | Advice from a Belle Meade Plantation Bride

As we welcome in this new week, the NWP Group is so excited to introduce a brand-new feature for our Mondays: After the Vows.  Every week we will spotlight a different Nashville area bride and get her wonderful advice on the planning process as well as her wedding inspirations.  You are in for a treat as we get a closer look into the mind of a bride. Our very first lovely bride is Alyssa Baumgartner, now the wife of Chris Baumgartner.  She answered a few questions for us about how she was able to make the whole wedding come together.

Number of people at the wedding: We had 230ish people at our wedding.

Wedding colors:  Our colors were a royal blue and deep, wine colored purple (called sangria from David's Bridal).

Time of year of wedding:  Our wedding was September 23rd -- the first official day of fall! I always wanted a fall wedding.

How long was your planning process?  My planning process was about 9 months.

What vendor went above and beyond for you?

 I thought all our vendors did a fantastic job! The staff at Belle Meade Plantation are SO helpful and patient with the 100s of questions they get. Jill Hartline at Lemon Tree Paper Company turned my jumbled vision for programs into the most perfect things ever, I was so amazed at her work! Our caterer, Awesome Catering by George, gave us the best food ever -- we're still getting rave reviews on it!


Where did you find inspiration for your wedding?

Our wedding was at Belle Meade Plantation in a gorgeous garden and carriage house dating back to the late 1800s. I really wanted to keep that old, southern feel from the vintage jewelry I wore and the blue mason jars we used in the centerpieces.

Where did you find the vendors for your wedding?

To keep the budget down, we actually used a lot of friends and family members! My aunt did the flowers, my cousins and I made the rest of the decorations, and a family friend from church did the catering! We also used fellow Lipscomb alumni for photography and videography. For anything else (like chairs and tablecloths) we used recommended vendors from the coordinator at BMP.

Was there anything that made your wedding unique?

I'm not sure if there was anything super out of the ordinary at our wedding. Rather than doing something out of the box, I just wanted the traditional things to be spectacular: the perfect venue, gorgeous flowers, beautiful music, delicious food and cake, etc. I think we accomplished that!

Looking back, is there anything about the planning process or wedding you would do differently?

There are a few things I would've done differently I think! I'm a people pleaser around friends with lots of opinions; looking back I would've been a little more outspoken about specific details I wanted. It was my day, after all. I would've used Jill at Lemon Tree Paper Company for all my paper needs. She did SUCH an amazing job on my programs, I wish I had used her from everything!! I also would've set aside more time for pictures. That's really the only thing that lasts when the day is over, and I wish we had time for more.

What was the best part of your wedding?

The best part to me was the music and the flowers. We had a string quartet play at our ceremony, which has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. They played old church hymns before the ceremony started, which were beautiful and really set the tone for how we wanted the ceremony to be focused. And my flowers, they were just perfect. Even though we had a fall wedding, which typically means orange and brown everything, I wanted bright colors that emphasized our deep purple color and included white tulips (which are difficult to find in September). My aunt nailed it.

Do you have any advice for future brides?

Decide what you want to splurge your money on, then find ways to save by having family/friends help out or making decorations yourself. We splurged on my dream venue but easily found other ways to save to make up for it. Pick the PERFECT photographer, and make sure you have more than enough time for pictures; that's really the only thing from that day that will last! Also, be outspoken about what YOU want -- you'll (hopefully) only have one wedding and it needs to be exactly how you want it!

Thank you Alyssa for letting us pick your brain about your beautiful fall wedding!  I hope these After the Vows posts will be valuable for all of you brides, vendors and planners to see the mindset of different brides during their wedding process.  After all, what better way to learn than from other's experiences?



Venue- Belle Meade Plantation

Flowers- Sara Rives

Photo- Libby Barker Photography

Video- Jake Morgan Films

Catering- Awesome Catering by George

Cake- Sweet 'N Sassy Bakery

Coordinator- Julie Fletcher (Everlastings)

Transportation- Matchless Limousine Service

Hair & Makeup- Kiva salon

Linens- Southern Events