5 Tips from a Colorful Laid-Back Bash in Charleston

Real Weddings
Wedding at the Lowndes Grove Plantation in Charleston

Photo: Austin Gros

Jamie and Nick, both 24, met on the dance floor as students at Auburn University. "Our wedding priority was to have great music and dance!" says the bride. So the couple, who wed on May 26th, 2013, at a gorgeous plantation home in Charleston, splurged on the entertainment, as well as an amazing photographer to capture all the action. But it wasn't all about big bucks. Jamie wore a J.Crew gown, and used her expertise as an interior designer to put together all the décor. "Though with a venue this beautiful, we didn't need much!" she says.

Here are five tips from this charming Southern 'do:

Look Elsewhere for What You Want
Jamie and Nick knew they wanted vintage-style photography and real film, but couldn't find someone in the Charleston area, so they had Austin Gros come in from Nashville. "It was the best decision we made," she says. "Every picture was perfect!"

Brace Yourself for Big-Ticket Items
"I had no idea that our café lights would cost more than a tent," Jamie says. But in the end, they really completed the reception's backyard vibe.

Be Practical
Nick and Jamie wish they'd splurged to rent a vintage car for their getaway, "but paying so much for a five-minute car ride wasn't in the budget," she says.

Keep it Simple
Instead of an over-the-top cake with fancy fondant, the couple chose buttercream frosting and fresh flowers. "It looked gorgeous, but saved us a ton!" says Jamie.

Skip the Favors
"I loved my sweet tea mason jar favors, but after a night of drinking and dancing, almost no one took them home," says Jamie.

Check out Jamie and Nick's wedding in the April/May 2014 issue of Brides (on newsstands now!).

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