Haley White and James Matheny married in an outdoor fall ceremony at Woodhaven Country Club before 144 guests. The couple pulled together a combination of a few DIY decor items, including a birch arch and entrance doors for their wedding.

Bride’s favorite memory: The brief time spent with my dad before he drove us in a covered golf cart to the outdoor ceremony location.

Photos by Shawna Cherrie

Advice to others: Before you and your husband are announced husband and wife, take a moment to look at all your family and friends gathered to celebrate you. Soak it up and appreciate all the love and support you and your husband are blessed to have with you on that most special day.

One thing you would have done differently: I would have hired a videographer, instead of relying on the GoPro we had setup.

Best planning tip: Start early and delegate tasks/small projects to trusted friends and family members. Don’t try to do it all by yourself; it just adds unnecessary stress.

Best money saving tip: Carefully choosing to do some decorations DIY is a fun way to get your friends and husband-to-be involved. My husband is very handy, so he built my entrance doors as well as the birch wood wedding arch that we stood under for the ceremony. We were also able to sell those items after the wedding and make money.

Location of ceremony and reception: Woodhaven Country Club
Why it worked: Beautiful outdoor/indoor venue. We all walked from the ceremony space to the reception hall; it was very convenient for everyone, especially out of town guests.

Photographer: Shawna Cherrie, freelance
Special choices: Photo with both sets of my grandparents and our seven nieces and nephews.

Dress: Couture Closet
Why it worked: It was a strapless gown, which wasn’t my preference, but it was the perfect gown. However, I was able to use lace from my mother’s 10 ft. veil to add straps and further embellish the belt. I also had the in-house seamstress, Melissa, revamp my mother’s veil, so I could wear it down the aisle. It was a dream come true.

Bridesmaids dresses: I did not have a traditional bridal party. Another way I chose to alleviate stressors. My friends were able to help out when they could and contributed how they felt best. On the day of, our friends came early for pictures and walked down the aisle, but sat in designated ceremony seating. They chose their own dresses in corals and pale pinks.
Why it worked: Everyone was happy and confident.

Tuxes: J. Alan Formalwear
Why it worked: Affordable, convenient. We were even able to email measurements for my brother-in-law, who lives in San Diego, so his tux would be ready.

Video: Family member’s iPhones and a GoPro
Why it worked: Convenient and affordable
I would have changed: I would have spent the extra footage for a full, compilation from the wedding day and reception, but the footage we have is personal and memorable.

Food: Woodhaven Country Club
Why it worked: Convenient, delicious and reasonably priced. The best lobster bisque.

Drinks: The Matheny Bellini
Special choices: Open bar.
Why it worked: Everyone could enjoy themselves and choose their favorites without worrying about price. It was my dad’s choice, and we did this in place of wedding favors.

Cake: Rookies Cookies
Special choices: Red velvet and chocolate (bride and groom’s favorite flavors)
Why it worked: Both delicious and breathtaking. Locally owned.

Flowers: The Flower Shoppe, New Albany
Why it worked: Outstanding mother-daughter team that worked with our budget to give us our dream wedding.

Music (both ceremony and reception): Spin-a-Round-Sound Professional DJ Services
Special choices: Zac Brown – Free for Mr. & Mrs. dance. Zac Brown – I’ll Be Your Man for father-daughter dance. Frankie Valli – I Love You Baby for entrance
Why it worked: Spin DJ’s get everyone involved and out of their seats. Everyone danced. And they take excellent, high-res photos.

Décor (rentals, diy, extras besides flowers): Reliable Rentals – linens and Fifty Chairs – gold chiavari chairs
Why it worked: Great service and good selection.

Planner: Bride
Why it worked: I was able to execute my vision while delegating tasks to family and girlfriends.

Rings: Koerber’s Fine Jewelry – Tacori
Why it worked: Locally owned.

Invitations: Family friend, Al Moreschi, who doubles as a graphic designer
Why it worked: It was a wedding gift. He did the Save-the-Dates, rehearsal dinner and wedding invitations.

Makeup: Angie Maxwell & Hair – Rebekah Hall at Angell’s Salon & Spa
Why it worked: Both are pros. My hairstylist has been doing my hair since I was 12, and has styled my hair for every major event in my life.

Rehearsal Dinner: Patrick O’Shea’s (downtown Louisville)
Why it worked: The Whiskey Cellar. It was quaint and had a wonderful atmosphere. The exposed brick, lighting, and menu were perfect for our rehearsal dinner of 50. We had a circus theme. The staff accommodated our use of ride tickets for mixed drinks (prepaid, two for each guest), and were very helpful with Cellar Door Chocolates – bourbon balls and bourbon caramel popcorn for each place setting. The staff helped us play a video and gave us use of the sound equipment for speeches, etc. It was a perfect night that set the stage for a perfect and memorable wedding day.

Other special moments: My husband is quarter Japanese. His mother’s mother was from Japan and married his grandfather, who was in the army. His grandmother passed away just after we got engaged, so we decided to perform the tradition San-San-Kudo sake ceremony during the reception in place of the unity candles. We used sake made in my husband’s grandmother’s hometown. Also, James’s brother sang The Day Before You by Rascal Flatts, while my cousin played the acoustic guitar. It was magical.

Length of planning time: My husband and I were engaged for one year and seven months. I would say I planned for at least a year, on and off. I feel as though slow and steady wins the race. Doing a little bit here and there also helped make everything seem more manageable and less stressful. There is no need to rush.

Budget: $25,000