Up the Cool-Girl Ante

Up the Cool-Girl Ante | A primer for adding an edge to your elegant Charleston wedding
Amanda Barrett & Alex Mattera
The Creek Club at I'On
It might be up for debate who made the first move between Amanda Barrett and Alex Mattera, but they both agree on how their initial meeting went. The one-time Penn State communications majors (he was in advertising and she was in PR) bumped into each other in a client relations class senior year, and, says Amanda, “When I stood up to introduce myself on the first day of class, Alex says he heard himself say, ‘Wow.’ Later, I moved to a seat next to him so that the professor wouldn’t see me doing THON [dance marathon] work rather than classwork. Things all started from there.” That cool-girl beginning culminated in the two getting married at the Creek Club at I’On a few years later. Their first dance tune? “Ho Hey” by the Lumineers, because cool girls pick cool first dance songs, of course. We thought their Big Day stood out for its mix of edginess and elegance, so for all those looking to add a spicy element to your sugary style, take a peek at Amanda’s do’s.
Play to your strengths when planning.
“I work in social media strategy and Alex is in account management for a branding agency,” says Amanda. “We both plan and manage things all day, so we knew what we wanted and were very quick on decision making. In social media, I see a lot of great style inspiration that we pulled from, and Alex has a strong eye for design from his work.”


Pick a posse with a sense of humor. 
After a day of dress shopping, Amanda, her wedding party, and her soon-to-be mother- and sister-in-law all headed to a bar to watch Penn State play. When nearly everyone in their crew walked in with Nittany Lion shirts and leather jackets, they achieved gang status. On her wedding day, the women gifted Amanda a blush-hued leather jacket and broke out their own coats for a few snaps.

Give your girls a little guidance if they get to pick their gowns.
“I sent a few group pics as inspiration,” says Amanda, “and asked them to stay in the blush-champagne family and look at full-length styles. Also, I asked that beading be saved for my two maids of honor to give them something extra to stand out.”

Splurge within reason.
Moscow Mules—the couple’s favorite cocktail—were served in copper cups filled with regular, his style, or her style. Guests at the head table were gifted personalized cups that had been tucked into the table runner greenery.

Be true to you.
“I rarely wear heels, although I love them,” says Amanda, “and I wanted to dance the night away, so [I found an Etsy vendor] to paint my shoes. I shared the geometric pieces and monogram [we planned to use]; and that peonies were my favorite flower, blush was our color palette, and I wanted to include a reference to ‘Friends.’ That was a lot of little things that she made into one awesome pair of shoes.”

Wedding design, planning: Bouquets and Bowties, www.bouquetsandbowtiescharleston.com 
Images: Carrie Elizabeth Photography, www.carrieelizabethphotography.com
Venue, caterer: The Creek Club at I’On, www.creekevents.com
Florals: Tiger Lily Weddings, tigerlilyweddings.com
Rentals, linens: EventWorks, www.eventworksrentals.com 
Draping, lighting: Lowcountry Entertainment, www.lowcountryentertainmentsc.com
Cake: Sweet Rhi, www.sweetrhi.com
Calligraphy, signage: Bennett & Co.
Bride’s attire: Pronovias, www.pronovias.com ; www.BHLDN.com (jewelry); A Bit of Love via www.Etsy.com (hair accessory); Shoes of Prey (shoes)
Bridesmaids’ gowns: www.Brideside.com ; www.BHLDN.com
Beauty: Lashes & Lace, www.lashesandlacecharleston.com 
Flower girl’s attire: Milly Wedding Shop via Etsy.com
Menswear: Menguin (suit), www.Menguin.com ; tie/pocket square from www.BHLDN.com
Ring bearer’s attire: LittleBoySwag via www.Etsy.com (suspenders, bow tie)
Cocktail illustration: JesMarried via www.Etsy.com
Wedding card holder: Leosklo via www.Etsy.com
Ring box: Waen via www.Etsy.com
Moscow Mule mugs: Spanish LaceCo 
Favors: SixPencePress via www.Etsy.com
Music: Chris Dodson (ceremony), www.chrisdodsonmusic.com ; Lowcountry Entertainment (reception), www.lowcountryentertainmentsc.com
Transportation: Lowcountry Trolley, www.lowcountrylooptrolley.com
Video: Adventure Film Co., www.advntrfilm.com