Category Archives: Under the Oaks

Under the Oaks: Our Portraits

May 14, 2015

nancyray-caljamwed-3881 These are my favorite pictures from our wedding – the pictures that we have framed in our home, the pictures that we will show our grandchildren one day, and the pictures of us with the people who we love the most.

I will never forget the portrait time at our wedding. Immediately after our ceremony, we took family pictures and then released them to join cocktail hour. Next we did the full bridal party pictures (we did the separate bridesmaid and groomsmen pictures before the ceremony) and then it was time for our portraits. I’ll never forget Nancy looking at me and telling me that the sun was still too bright and that we should wait a bit longer for our portraits. Trusting her completely, we said “great!” and continued to move on. About an hour later, when we went to eat our private dinner on the dock, Nancy and her team came along, and we took our portraits. I’m so thankful for her judgement because I absolutely love the way our portraits turned out!
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Under the Oaks: Receiving Line

May 13, 2015


It was important to Jamie and I that we had the chance to speak to and thank every guest that traveled so far to be at our wedding. Marianne’s suggestion was the perfect answer! We decided to do a receiving line as our guests passed through the house from cocktail hour into our reception for dinner. It was so special to look each person in the eye, hug and thank them for being with us on that special day. It also gave Jamie and I a chance to quickly meet some of our family members and friends that we hadn’t met yet.

If you decide to do a receiving line, take these tips in consideration:
1. Be quick with your greetings – you will want to be able to get through the whole line
2. Plan your receiving line timeframe depending on your guest list number – smaller weddings will not take as long as larger weddings
3. Plan extra time in your timeline – it will take longer than you anticipate
4. Keep a wedding planner or coordinator close to you, so they can help push guests through the line


nancyray-caljamwed-3830Images by Nancy Ray Photography

Under the Oaks: Cocktail Hour

May 11, 2015


Our cocktail hour was held in the front of the River Oaks house while their team transformed the backyard from the ceremony to the reception. Cru Catering created delicious Southern hors d’oeuvres including low-country fried green tomatoes topped with pimento cheese, applewood smoked bacon wrapped shrimp and smoked maple leaf duck breast. We also served two signature cocktails – a gulf oyster shooter and Charleston Cosmopolitan.


We decorated our cocktail hour with a large farmhouse table filled with our family’s wedding pictures, some vintage cake toppers, and some other fun details including a husband list I made 8 years ago!



After we finished formal pictures in the backyard, my dad introduced us into cocktail hour.

nancyray-caljamwed-3976 Images by Nancy Ray Photography

Under the Oaks: Rehearsal Dinner

April 17, 2015

nancyray-caljamreh-1053 After an incredible afternoon, Jamie’s parents hosted a lovely rehearsal dinner for our immediate families and bridal party. From the delicious Southern seafood to the exposed brick, The Harbour Club was the perfect location for our Southern celebration. Jamie and I still talk about how special this night was. The words, laughter and tears that were shared will forever be remembered.

Venue + Catering: Harbour Club
Photography: Nancy Ray Photography
Videography: Heartstone Films
Place Cards + Letters: Rebecca Rose Creative
Dress: Milly
Shoes: Joie
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Under the Oaks: Bridesmaid Luncheon

April 15, 2015

nancyray-caljamreh-1016My two grandmothers and Aunt Kelly hosted the most wonderful bridesmaid luncheon. In the heart of beautiful, downtown Charleston, we dined on the most delicious spring salad and enjoyed sweet time together. I wanted to keep my luncheon small and intimate, which is why I decided to invite only my bridesmaids and the women in our immediate families. Because our wedding was a destination wedding, all of our guests had traveled to be in Charleston with us and I wanted to make sure that I had time to spend specifically with our families. It was the perfect way to spend the afternoon before my wedding.

Venue: Peninsula Grill


nancyray-caljamreh-1013 nancyray-caljamreh-1012 nancyray-caljamreh-1017 nancyray-caljamreh-1026 Images by Nancy Ray Photography