After 10+ years of being together, Hayley and Justin tied the knot at Clementine. Not only were these high school sweethearts get excited to celebrate their love, but they were excited to celebrate with everyone who has been with them through every step of their love story. Opting to include darker toned neutrals, gold accents, and a plethora of customized and DIY decor, their day was the perfect blend of romantic and edgy. Sara Bill Photography captured their proposal and now their Nashville wedding. Enjoy these images below!
How did you guys meet?
Hayley: Justin and I met in high school and started dating his senior year/my junior year. We went to separate colleges in Indiana and moved to Nashville together in 2012. If you had told us at the age of 17 we would be here now -I’m not sure we would have believed you, it’s been a wild 10+ years together and we wouldn’t change a thing!
Tell us about your engagement!
Hayley: Justin proposed on Sunday 12/10/17. I was up for a promotion at work and was to find out that following week whether I got it or not. I had been striving for this new position for years and was extremely preoccupied those few days prior. Little did I know that while I was uber-focused and stressing about work, he was recruiting my family and friends to pull off the biggest surprise of my life.
The Friday before, two of my best friends suggested we meet the following day for lunch and get our nails done. I thought nothing of this, that they were simply keeping me distracted from work. Unbeknownst to me Justin had actually recruited them to make sure I had my nails done when he popped the question and his plan was being set into motion. While at the salon, one of them suggested we all meet up at ACME for a drink Sunday night to keep my mind off everything and celebrate the end of the year. I spoke with Justin about the idea when I got home and I remember him nonchalantly saying it would be fun. That should have been a red flag as he is not one whose first thought when thinking of going downtown is usually “fun” but he had been super sympathetic to my rising stress level and I didn’t question it.
Sunday evening rolled around and as we got ready to leave the house, he “received a text” from a friend who had just been downtown and suggested parking at Nissan stadium and taking the pedestrian bridge due to heavy concert traffic (Garth Brooks @ Bridgestone). Looking back, I’m not sure how I didn’t question any of this. I think I was just happy to have a distraction at the time. We parked at the stadium and started walking across the bridge. About halfway across, he stopped. I remember him saying my full name, how we’ve grown up together and built a life together in Nashville and the next thing I knew he was down on one knee. We exchanged a few tears, hugs (and not going to lie-a couple expletives from me in my shock). Justin had even thought to recruit one of our dear friends and photographer, Sara Bill, to capture the moment.
As we continued to cross the bridge, I had a dozen questions- were we even going to ACME and which parent and/or sister I should FaceTime first. He assured me that we should continue to ACME and make the calls from there. We made it to the restaurant and proceeded up to the second floor only to be greeted by a large group of our closest friends, my parents and younger sister who live in Indiana and even my twin sister who lives in Idaho. I was so stunned and shocked. I’m not typically one to be caught off guard and rarely am I surprised but he had thought of everything, it was absolutely perfect! I got the promotion three days later and it ended up being the best week ever!
What was the vision for your wedding?
Hayley: Justin is the Taproom Manager at Yazoo Brewery and I’m a music agent at WME, we joke that our world revolves around our two dogs, good music and good beer and we try not to take life too seriously. We approached the wedding with the same attitude and wanted it purely be a reflection of our personalities, interests and style. Also, having been together as long as we have, we wanted to not only celebrate furthering our commitment to each other, but for all our friends and family who have been with us every step of the way to feel welcomed and celebrated as well.
What was your theme and what inspired it?
Hayley: We toured a dozen venues and at the time, Clementine was still very much a construction site. We had to wear hard hats for the first tour but could tell right off the bat that it was a perfect fit for us. Dan and Brenda had already proven their knack for vision and style with Ruby, even as a work in progress we knew Clementine was going to be beautiful. Lucky for us, we were right ha! Upon touring the completed venue with its exposed brick and beams, brass accents, modern features but also mid-century touches, we realized the space spoke for itself and wanted to lean more towards simple but classic colors and decor while also reflecting our style as a couple.
What details were used to create your theme?
Hayley: We are typically drawn to darker, neutral colors. We started by creating a palette with shades of grays, blacks and added gold accents then worked from there. Knowing it would be spring, I wanted a slight pop of color that would not be overwhelming. While searching for bridesmaid dresses, my sister found a “dusty blue” color that did the trick and blended perfectly with our existing shades. As far as flowers, I loved the simplicity of mixed greenery and white flowers but slight edginess of dahlias.
We really wanted to bring our life goals of “good dogs, good music and good beer” into the wedding but without it coming off as kitschy. Our cake topper featured our two German Shepherds, Ace & Lexi who were also mentioned in our program as “celebrating from home.” For beer, Justin worked with our amazing friends at Yazoo to create our own citrus leaning but subtly hoppy (a combination of our favorite styles) wedding beer – the “‘Bout Damn Time Brew” that he bottled and labeled himself. The labels as well as our favors, custom pint glasses, were designed by a friend, Adam Jones. We had thrown around the idea with Paul at Bacon & Caviar about somehow incorporating Yazoo into our menu and he knocked it out of the park with a delicious Dos Perros beef bourguignon- my aunt still refers to it as one of the best meals she has ever had!
Music has always played a huge role in our relationship and became one of our biggest focal points of the day. Our escort cards were custom ticket stubs and our guest book, an acoustic Epiphone wrapped with one of our engagement photos. We had a blast curating songs for specific moments of the day, from the cake cutting to our send-off song. We also created surprise mashups for our bridal party introductions. We carefully selected songs that reminded us of each one of our unsuspecting bridesmaids and groomsmen and turned them into mashups to play after each name was announced. The artists varied from Taking Back Sunday, Toto, Elvis, Dave Matthews, Trampled by Turtles, Wynonna and Lamb of God. Their reactions as well as those from the other guests were priceless! The wonderful Lt. Dan Buckley of Lightning 100 did a fantastic job highlighting our varied music tastes throughout the cocktail hour and dinner and Flying Buffaloes played a killer three-hour set that featured our favorite classic rock, country, and pop punk hits.
Where did you splurge? Where did you save/DIY?
Hayley: From the start of the planning process, we picked our top three priorities (venue, food, music) and built our budget from there. Clementine‘s flexible vendor policy also allowed us to pull from our resources. Justin’s stepmother (we prefer the term “other mother”) was a florist in Indiana and she graciously offered to provide all our flowers as a gift. We instead put that part of our budget towards having a band in addition to a DJ for the evening. Justin’s father is also a welder and created our table numbers and archway.
What words of advice do you have for couples in the midst of their planning?
Haley: I think it’s easy for brides to get caught up in Pinterest boards, magazines, and current trends and lose sight of themselves or what they really want. Don’t feel the need to compare your vision to other weddings you’ve attended or seen. Remember, the day is about you and your partner and should reflect your own, unique style.
Can you share any special moments or highlights from your wedding day?
Hayley: If you asked Justin, his answer might be “cookie dough cake!” In all honesty, our first look was our favorite part of the day. I originally had been hesitant to do one, but in the end it was the best decision! I’ll always cherish that small moment we had together, just us. Any nerves we had prior were calmed immediately. While taking pictures in the courtyard after our first look, the kind bartenders from Hathorne brought out cocktails and toasted us – it was an incredibly sweet and unexpected gesture!