Rustic Done Right

Rustic Done Right | Bay Street Biergarten owner (and recent bride) Laura Boyles gives tips for turning a preference for down-to-earth style into easy elegance

Laura Patrick & Andrew Boyles
December 20, 2014
Lowndes Grove Plantion


As the daughter of the husband-and-wife team who head Patrick Properties Hospitality Group (PPHG), the company behind luxury Charleston operations like The William Aiken House, Lowndes Grove Plantation, The American Theater, and Fish Restaurant, you might have expected Laura Patrick to go for an over-the-top super colorful, super fem style for her December 20, 2014 wedding. Not so. True to her unpretentious persona, Laura instead aimed toward the aesthetic of her own establishment, Bay Street Biergarten. The bar-restaurant, where she and her now-husband Andrew Boyles met, is known for being comfortably chic with its exposed beams, expansive beer lineup, and games. Laura brought Melissa Barton of A Charleston Bride on board and they banned together to pull off a day that met the bride’s hopes: to spoil Andrew, showcase favorite PPHG elements, and, she adds, for guests to say, “That was one heck of a party!”

Charleston Weddings: How many weddings have you been to at Patrick Property venues?
Laura Patrick Boyles: I haven’t actually been to many Patrick Property weddings, but I have been going to parties and events thrown by the company my whole life­. I even had my fifth grade slumber party at the American Theater. So I guess you could say I’ve been partying with Patrick Properties for more than 20 years.

CW: How did you choose Lowndes Grove?
Ever since my parents acquired it, I wanted to get married there. They put their hearts and souls into restoring it and I have so many wonderful memories associated with the property—there was no contest. Andrew was totally on board, so we planned everything around when it was available. I couldn’t have imagined a better place.

CW: What were your goals for the wedding?
Everyone says that a wedding day is all about the bride, but I wanted Andrew to have the best day, too. So we had a main dance tent that felt like a ballroom, a cocktail tent that felt like a VIP party, and a “man cave” tent with a beer wall, whiskey bar, and a cigar rolling station.

CW: Why go rustic?
The style just felt right for us; Andrew’s very outdoorsy while I’m more of a cocktail hour girl, but put us in either environment and we’re comfortable.

CW: What tips do you have for brides who want a rustic wedding without the hay bales?
You can do rustic without a barn! Stick to a basic, muted color palette and incorporate exposed wood into the décor.

CW: Can you talk about the menu?
We narrowed it down into a Southern barbecue plus signature items from Fish and the Biergarten. Nico [Fish’s chef] really wanted to use the Biergarten’s smoker, so we decided on pork and fish as our proteins.

CW: Why did you skip a seated dinner? 

Seated dinners are more stuffy than what we were going for. We had family and friends fly in from all over and we didn’t want them stuck at tables.

CW: What did you envision?
I imagined everyone dressed in cocktail attire but playing Jenga and cutting a rug. Late in the evening, the swing the bacon bar had been displayed on was
re-purposed as a Jenga table (which everyone called “Swenga”). Misson accomplished!

Vendor List:

Wedding design: A Charleston Bride,

Venue: Lowndes Grove Plantation,

Florals: Jonie LaRosee,

Photography: Virgil Bunao,

Rentals: Snyder Events,

Chandelier: EventHaus,

Catering, bar service, cake: Patrick Properties Hospitality Group,

Bride’s attire: Amsale from White on Daniel Island,

Beauty: Paloosh Salon and Spa,

Bridesmaid attire: Donna Morgan from Bella Bridesmaids,

Groom’s attire: Vera Wang, Men’s Wearhouse,