Alex and Stephanie created a day that will prove to be inspirational to many. An outdoor event worthy of a fabulous photo shoot, this Americana Nashville wedding puts the joy into a wedding that everyone wants!
Details of an Americana Nashville Wedding
Nashville – it’s the home of country music, but it is also becoming a bustling metropolis. Nashville is home to the elite Vanderbilt University as well as its famed medical center, but those in search of entertainment often find themselves on the Broadway area of Nashville’s downtown traffic. Around the outskirts of Nashville are a multitude of farms and beautiful outdoor venues perfect for an Americana Nashville wedding.
Like the rest of the South, Nashville is an eclectic town. There are as many rural tourists as its educational opportunities and musical talents. You can host an Americana Nashville-themed wedding anywhere, particularly if you choose a rustic, pastoral scene or choose to host a rooftop ceremony on Broadway.
What to Look for in a Venue for an Americana Nashville Wedding
Nashville is home to a wealth of gorgeous wedding locations, both inside the city and on the outskirts of town. Family farms are plentiful near Nashville; you can even find a few owned by world-renowned celebrities that will rent the venue for a blushing brides’ nuptial event.
You’re likely to find both indoor and outdoor settings around Nashville to host your wedding, but, keep in mind that in a place like Nashville, inclement weather can move in rather quickly (often without notice). Be sure to ask the venue host if there is an alternative, indoor space just in case the weather plays a factor.
There are some more traditional venues near Nashville that will provide a wedding site as well as a reception area. It’s important to discuss with the venue representative exactly what is included in your venue rental fee. Some establishments offer both wedding venues and reception space, as well as other amenities including table cloths, certain electronic equipment, and more. You can save a great deal of money when your venue offers things you might otherwise have to rent separately.
Food for an Americana Nashville Wedding
Some Nashville brides will offer a traditional wedding menu. That means, depending upon the time of day of the nuptials, traditional brides will offer either finger foods or a full sit-down dinner.
Traditionally, Southern brides will offer appetizers or finger foods for a reception held in the early or mid-afternoon. However, if the ceremony ends at 6 pm or later, tradition dictates that brides offer a meal to their reception guests.
In the South, brides love to offer finger sandwiches, but, if you want to break with tradition, you can serve sliders. These small sandwiches can be mini-burgers, or you can offer a more vegan-friendly option. You might also draw inspiration from European weddings where they have cucumber sandwiches.
Another popular option is the charcuterie tray, which offers slices of cheese, fruit, and prepared meat (or you can design your own foods; there is no set rule). Of course, you can always offer a variety of dips (many Nashville brides love to incorporate some type of crab or seafood dip). You can always offer dinner in the form of a potato bar or even a chicken and waffles station.
Table Setting Style for an Americana Nashville Wedding
To really get into the spirit of the Americana Nashville wedding, serve drinks in Mason jars rather than traditional glasses. (For a real Southern taste, serve sweet tea in those Mason jars.) You can find Mason jars in the canning aisle of the supermarket, or you may be able to find some Mason jar-style drinking glasses online.
Again, since your wedding is inspired by Music City, you can always incorporate some type of music-themed decor into the table setting style. Centerpieces in the shape of musical notes will make your reception completely memorable and unique.
Favors and Gifts for an Americana Nashville Wedding
Forgo providing favors and gifts for your guests and opt for a welcome bag for the members of your wedding party (including parents), particularly if they have traveled into town for the wedding. Wedding bags are thoughtful “happies” that you place in the guests’ hotel room, and they may include edible treats, a map with directions to important locales related to the wedding, or you may add a personalized gift for your family and members of the wedding party.
Some brides may add a bag of cookies or fudge for a late-night snack after the rehearsal. These favors are thoughtful and tasty as well!
Ceremony Decor for an Americana Nashville Wedding
Your decor will largely depend upon the venue which you choose for the nuptials. If you choose an outdoor venue for your Americana Nashville wedding, you’ll likely not need to add much decor to the venue itself. That’s because the gardens and other outdoor venues around Nashville are stunning without a lot of decor.
Typically, the ceremonial backdrop is the main piece of decor for Nashville brides. Many brides may choose a trellis, while others will choose a large, wooden cross for their backdrop. Then, you can personalize the trellis with flowers, garland, or even lights woven into gossamer.
However, if you decide to go with the more traditional arch or trellis, then the decor is usually the same. Even if you opt for a more traditional venue, such as a church, then the ceremonial backdrop will also be a focal point of the wedding. Some brides will add small floral arrangements at the inner aisle side of each pew.
Reception Decor for an Americana Nashville Wedding
The reception is where you can really decorate so that your personal taste shines! While you may plan for rich, Southern-style food and elaborate centerpieces on each table, you also have the freedom to utilize those same mason jars or a rustic lantern to hold floral arrangements or candles. (Tea light battery-operated candles work perfectly here!)
You can also place a string of fairy lights in these glass and wooden lanterns along with flowers or a tea light candle for centerpieces. You may consider an antique oil lamp to use as a vase holding hydrangea blooms or sunflowers.
Outdoor Wedding Ideas for an Americana Nashville Wedding
Nashville is home to many gorgeous outdoor garden venues in the city and in its outskirts. Plus, Nashville is home to many historical homes where an outdoor wedding can take place. As with any Southern wedding, you may decide to host your outdoor wedding at a rustic venue such as a family farm (even the Nashville stars own farms near the city).
You may also want to consider bringing in tents for the Americana Nashville outdoor wedding. This will help guests to beat the heat during the ceremony while still allowing you to hold the nuptials outdoors. Why not make your wedding an outdoor party?
Broadway is a major downtown thoroughfare in Nashville, and hosting a wedding at a rooftop bar on this street makes for the perfect outdoor wedding idea for an Americana Nashville wedding.
Wedding Cake Ideas for an Americana Nashville Wedding
Many Americana Nashville brides are utilizing a rustic-looking cake for their wedding cake. Usually, these cakes have two or three tiers, and they have more icing than the naked cake. Some rustic wedding cakes offer a look that appears to have icing chipped away, and the cake may have the initials of the happy couple “carved” into the icing. To really pull off the rustic look, utilize a pair of faux deer antlers (however, you can substitute flowers or greenery as the topper).
Of course, since Nashville is so associated with music, any cake that offers a musical theme is appropriate for the Americana Nashville wedding cake. Toppers features musical notes or fondant formed into the shape of a musical note adorning the cake add some of your personal taste to the wedding reception.
Wedding Reception Music and Entertainment for an Americana Nashville Wedding
The Americana Nashville wedding often features a fun mix of music, but, considering you’re in Nashville, you may want to incorporate a few country love songs and a few rock ballads.
After all, Nashville is “Music City” in the Southern United States, so music is a huge part of this wedding theme.
Looking for a song for the father/daughter dance? Consider Butterfly Kisses or I Loved Her First. A very sweet first dance song would be I Cross My Heart by George Strait (considered the King of Country). If you want something a little more modern, then play I Thought I Loved You Then by Brad Paisley.
Americana Wedding at The Hermitage in Nashville
What happens when a history buff with a DIY leaning (Stephanie) and an Americana fan who loves to throw ‘down home’ parties (Alex) get married? Pure magic! This HAS to be one of the most well done weddings I have ever seen. Not only is it shot exquisitely by Abigail Bobo Photography, but it also tells a story from start to finish, is flawlessly suited for its historic venue (Andrew Jackson’s old home!), and contains personalized touches unique to this darling couple.
From Abigail Boho Photography – “This story started three years ago when Alex and Stephanie met in NYC on a fishing trawler. They fell in mutual love on the salty deck. Alex tells the story best…
‘Stephanie and I met on a fishing boat. My friend bought a grouping to go fishing and had an extra ticket. He called me and told me I had 3 minutes to get ready and make the trip. I was planning on sleeping in that day and then getting a big sandwich but I am really really happy I took that call and got on that boat.’
A couple of years later, they got iced in during a vacation to Nashville. The pair fell in love with the city and decided to host a unique destination wedding to share their love of Nashville with their favourite people.
Stephanie is a menswear designer for Swiss Army and wove together beautiful details, including a scavenger hunt of Nashville, hand-lettered invitations, cross stitch decorations, vintage flags, magnolia place cards… Alex is a lover of Americana and provided a surprise groomsman in an American flag set, vintage record table numbers and Andrew Jackson penny press boutonnieres.
However, what truly sets this day apart is Alex and Stephanie themselves. They are kind, warm and hilarious people who take nothing serious, but having a great time with the people that they love!”
From The Bride, Stephanie – “We started without any “colours” besides the blue sky and the green earth. I wore a simple boat neck duchess satin dress with buttons down the entire length of the back, a blush train, and a repurposed leather belt I borrowed from my husband. I made my own veil. Simplicity was important to me. Alex wore a denim shirt and chambray tie (in homage to my time as a denim designer when we first met) with a navy suit and pressed penny boutonniere. It was important to him to be able to dance wild and free!
All the bouquets were just greens to let the girls shine and the bridesmaids chose their own blush dresses, while the groomsmen wore Oxford chambray suits. We researched the history of our venue and started collecting as much Andrew Jackson memorabilia as we could, Wheaton Glass bottles, antique campaign pins, vintage pennants, dozens of candelabras, doilies, etc.
I created the invitations by using seed paper (when planted, it sprouts flowers) and calligraphy letters mimicking Jackson’s handwriting inviting guests to his home for “Martellimony.” All invites had ‘Hermitage’ and Andrew Jackson stamps (collected off eBay) Our wedding programs doubled as old-fashioned fans to fight off the heat in the historical church.
Cross-stitch hoops were used with lace and bells to make homemade tambourines for the big kiss during the ceremony. I also filled them with vintage doilies and embroidered them to make a fun piece of wall art with “HOLLER AND SWALLER” (aka: ‘cheers’) and other wedding party phrases.
Our bar featured all local Tennessee whiskies & moonshines and our menu was a take on upscale BBQ. We met on a boat, so there were a few boat references hidden throughout the wedding napkins and with a large gold pirate ship we found while antiquing in Nashville. We used Records (Dolly Parton Forever!) to list guest seating, and tea-stained American flags stitched two sticks for the send-off at the end of the night.”
Credits: Photography: Abigail Bobo Photography // Event Design: Stephanie Martell // Coordination: Bonnie Hix // Catering: Two Fat Men Catering // Floral Design: Greenfinch Floral Design // Music: Avery Bright Trio, Hogslop String Band, & Premier DJs Nashville // Venue: Hermitage Home of Andrew Jackson in Nashville, Tennessee.