It October 2017, Carter Boardman was supposed to be getting ready for a "business dinner" with then-boyfriend Eugene “Foxy” Foxworth. “He told me we were getting dinner with a client and his wife,” she recalls. In reality, Foxy had planned to propose on a cocktail cruise before dinner at his parent's house...and there was one problem: Carter didn't want to go!
So, Foxy improvised and instead proposed at their home in Charleston, South Carolina. “I went upstairs, and he was down on one knee with a perfect ring from our family friend’s store, Croghan’s,” she says. After she said "yes," the newly engaged couple made it to Foxy's family’s house, where their parents and close friends were waiting in costume fox heads—a nod to the last name the couple would share once married!—that Carter's mother and aunt had found at Target. “I was beyond excited and the rest of the evening was a blur,” she recalls.
A little over a year later, the group gathered again—this time, with a total of 450 guests!—in the bride's hometown of Augusta, Georgia, for a black-tie event that incorporated palm trees (a nod to the groom's home state of South Carolina) and creative cuisine (inspired by one of the bride’s favorite places, New York City).
Keep reading to see all the details come to life, with planning and design by Calder Clark and photos by Olivia Rae James, below.
Charleston-based stationer Mac & Murphy designed a custom invitation suite featuring illustrations of a fox and palm fronds—two elements that would be featured prominently throughout the wedding. Vintage stamps with illustrated botanicals of Georgia and South Carolina were added to celebrate the couple's home states.
Carter says that choosing her Carolina Herrera gown was the easiest decision she made while wedding planning. In fact, she found the bow-embellished dress at Betty Bridal Atelier, the very first bridal salon she visited. She says, "I tried a few others on just to appease everyone, but my mom and I looked at each other and said, ‘it’s the one!’" On the big day, she paired the classic wedding dress with a simple gold bangle, a diamond bracelet, and classic pearl-and-diamond earrings.
For her "something blue," Carter donned a pair of custom mink shoes by Stuart Weitzman. “I worked with Stuart for five years in New York, so these were particularly special to me,” she says.
Carter’s ten bridesmaids wore matching gowns by Natalie Deayala from Bella Bridesmaids. “It was classic, chic, and flattering on everyone,” the brides says. The bride carried a Lily of the Valley bouquet, while her bridesmaids held arrangements of sweet peas, Japanese clematis, garden roses, nigella lisianthus, and anemones, all created by Blossom Events.
Foxy and his groomsmen donned classic tuxedos and boutonnieres of lisianthus. The groom’s ensemble also included a custom shirt with his initials embroidered on each cuff.
“It was love at first sight,” Carter says of the first time she met Foxy on New Year’s Eve 2015 in New York City. She was living there and he was in town for a Phish concert to which, through a mutual friend, he’d offered her his extra ticket. “I literally texted one of my best friends the next day that I was going to marry him," she adds.
The couple’s ceremony took place at St. Paul's Episcopal Church. “I grew up going to St. Paul’s, which is stunning, and knew I wanted to get married there,” the bride says. They kept the ceremony decor minimal, decorating only the church doors and the altar with palm fronds so that the historical architecture, designed by Augusta native Henry Ten Eyck Wendell, remained the focus.
Throughout the ceremony, music was performed by an organist and a herald trumpeter. After reciting their vows, the couple shared their first kiss, then recessed to the melody of “Lift High the Cross.”
After the ceremony, wedding guests crossed the street for the reception, which was held at the Augusta Museum of History. “I loved leaving the church and leading the wedding party across the street to the party,” says the bride. “We turned the corner and were greeted by waiters serving champagne and wearing fox heads [the same ones family and friends wore at our engagement].” Because the museum’s interior couldn’t accommodate the couple’s guest count, wedding planner Calder Clark created the reception space by tenting the museum’s parking lot.
Inside the tent, palm fronds provided vibrant pops of green against the black-and-white scheme. “My mom had the genius idea of making the tent’s poles looks like palm trees,” Carter says of the décor in the main tent, where roving shuckers from Oysters XO served guests fresh Beausoleil oysters. Tables were covered in custom linens of bone-hued velvet with a black velvet welt, and decorated with palm fronds and candles.
Even the bar was accented with palm fronds and black-and-white accents. While they didn’t serve a signature cocktail, “we specially requested Casamigos, and apparently we drank almost all of it,” adds the bride with a laugh.
“I wanted the menu to be untraditional and representative of my favorite foods from when I lived in New York City,” says Carter, who turned to Cru Catering to bring her foodie fantasies to life. When guests first arrived they were greeted by a custom pretzel wall, with yellow mustard, honey mustard, and dijon mustard served in shot glasses for dipping.
In the main tent other stations inspired by NYC restaurants included a ceviche bar reminiscent of Chelsea Mexican Los Mariscos, a pad thai bar channeling Uncle Boons in Nolita, gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches akin to Melt Shop, and bao buns inspired by the ones served at Ludlow House.
After dark, pillar candles and natural uplighting added warmth to the massive tent—and got guests ready for a night under twinkle lights on the dance floor.
The couple performed their first dance to Beyoncé’s “Love on Top” as family and friends looked on.
“I wanted it to taste just like it was out of a box and it did!” says Carter of their Funfetti-flavored wedding cake created by Minette Rushing.
“I stayed on the dance floor the entire night,” says the bride. “Later in the evening, we passed out YSL-inspired heart-shaped sunglasses.” To fortify dancers, the couple also served passed cheeseburgers from Southern restaurant chain Krystal.
After a confetti shower on the dance floor, the newlyweds exited in a Chrysler limo that the bride's grandfather, Red, and his brother had bought in 1968. It was complete with a bundle of heart-shaped balloons. "I love throwing parties and always incorporate some Mylar balloons, which add just the right amount of kitsch," says the bride. "One of my favorite memories from the night was driving away and seeing the balloons flying behind us, all the way home.”
Ceremony Venue: St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
Reception Venue: Augusta Museum of History
Wedding Planner: Calder Clark
Bride’s Gown: Carolina Herrera, purchased at Betty Bridal Atelier
Bride’s Shoes: custom Stuart Weitzman
Groom’s Tuxedo: Grady Ervin & Co.
Bridesmaids' Dresses: Natalie Dealaya, purchased at Bella Bridesmaids
Hair: Salon Vari
Stationery Design: Mac & Murphy
Floral Design: Blossom Events
Catering: Cru Catering
Cake: Minette Rushing
Rentals: Snyder Events
Videography: Hart to Hart Media
Photography: Olivia Rae James