A Sweet Fall Wedding at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens

Real Weddings

A love of animals brought Karen Jones and Magaly Ickes together. Four years ago, both women attended a fundraising event for a non-profit animal rescue, but their minds weren't always on the furry friends. Magaly used the opportunity to slip Karen her number, and, as she says, the rest was history. A year later, the pair planned a trip to Napa Valley, where Magaly popped the question at a romantic bed and breakfast.

For their October 14, 2014, wedding, Magaly and Karen chose a venue they often visited: The Atlanta Botanical Garden. With its many gardens and indoor spaces, the venue offered the option to host an outdoor ceremony and indoor reception. Plus, each area needed little enhancement for their purple, silver, and white celebration. Keep reading to see all of Anna and Spencer Photography's photos from their special day.

Despite Magaly's insistence on renting a tuxedo, Karen's wishes won out and the attorney slipped into a custom made suit for their big day. "I knew she was right when I tried on the rental tuxedo and it looked frumpy and ill fitting," Magaly says. "I'm so glad she convinced me to get my own tuxedo because she knew just how much I would love it." Her look was complete with a color-palette complementing purple vest, infinity cufflinks, and her initials sewn on the sleeves.

The couple opted for a first look, during which Karen presented Magaly with a designer watch inscribed with the words, "'Til time ends." Karen donned a classic A-line gown that she tried on at the now infamous Bridals By Lori of Say Yes to the Dress. "I wasn't on the show," she says. "But my mom was super excited to take a picture with Lori and Monte."

Since the ceremony was held in the property's gorgeous rose garden, the couple didn't need to bring in much in the way of décor. They opted for two tall arrangements of calla lilies, hydrangea, and orchids flanking the space where they would exchange their vows. A young flower girl, wearing a white and purple petal dress, carried a flower ball down the aisle with the couple's wedding bands attached.

Magaly and Karen worked with their officiant to customize their wedding vows, which they recited in front of their 100 guests. "I surprised Karen with a wedding band at the ceremony," Magaly says. "She was worried that I had lost her engagement ring." Then, the couple recessed to a string quartet playing "I Won't Give Up" by Jason Mraz.

Guests enjoyed the couple's signature cocktail, a Mangotini, outdoors before heading inside for the reception.

Calla lilies contained in glass vases and topped with floating candles decorated the couple's reception tables. Menus featured a custom designed logo, made by Karen, that featured a purple heart, the couple's names, and their wedding date.

For dinner, Magaly and Karen offered guests a three-course meal with a choice of filet with shrimp, filet with scallops, or stuffed Portobello mushrooms.

As an alternative to a traditional guest book, the couple asked their guests to sign a wine barrel purchased from a vineyard they had visited in Napa Valley the day after they got engaged. "We had folks sign the barrel during the reception, and we had a glass top with our logo created for the top so we can use it as a table in our dining room, near the bar," Magaly says.

In keeping with their color palette, the couple's wedding cake was iced with purple buttercream and made of gingerbread, caramel, and red velvet layers. It was topped with custom made flamingos decked out in a veil and top hat.

Magaly and Karen took their first twirl to "I Choose You" by Sara Bareilles, then left their reception through a tunnel of bubbles. Looking back on their wedding day, Magaly advises other brides to stay focused on what matters. "Always remember why you are marrying your partner, and don't let the wedding be a distraction. Be eager to compromise on minor items so you can both enjoy the experience."

Venue: Atlanta Botanical Garden || Wedding Attire: Bridals By Lori; Saint Harridan; Brooks Brothers || Jewelry & Wedding Bands: Solomon Brothers || Hair: Intrigue Salon || Florist: Fuji Floral Design || Invitations: Appy Couple || Catering: Dennis Dean Catering || Photography: Anna and Spencer Photography

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Did you love this Atlanta wedding? Then check out another celebration in the same city in the video below.

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