“In mid April, Megan and Nathan had the night of their lives with their closest friends and family at the Davis Island Garden Club in Tampa. The two had an intimate first look at the University of Tampa, then exchanged vows to spend the rest of their days together and celebrated well into the night! They had perfect weather {even with predicted thunderstorms!}, a gorgeous waterfront venue, tons of hand-crafted DIY details by the bride and love the completely filled the room. These two met three years ago while country line dancing at the Round Up. Who knew, you can actually meet your future spouse in a country bar! No wonder they chose “Head over Boots” as their first dance song.” –Michelle Stoker Photography

In LOVE with this gorgeous couple and their personalized life saver!
We're in love with this gorgeous and bright invitation suite!
How gorgeous is this Bride's fab bouquet and shoes?! Love!
How darling is this Bride's getting ready glass?! We're loving it!
We love this Bride's gorgeous long sleeved wedding dress!
Gorgeous Bride getting ready on her big day!
We love a Bride who uses a signature wedding day perfume!
How fun are these photos of the Bride and her Bridesmaids before the big day!
How fun are these photos of the Bride and her Bridesmaids before the big day!
How fun are these photos of the Bride and her Bridesmaids before the big day!
We love this Bride's stunning wedding shoes!
The stunning Bride and her colorful bouquet before the ceremony!
The stunning Bride and her colorful bouquet before the ceremony!
The stunning Bride and her Bridesmaids before the ceremony!
We love this Bride's sweet note for her Groom!
We love this shot of the Groom getting his Brides note before the big day!
The handsome Groom getting ready for the big day!
The handsome Groom getting ready for the big day!
The handsome Groom getting ready for the big day!
The handsome Groom getting ready for the big day!
The handsome Groom and his Groomsmen getting ready for the big day!
We're swooning over this darling first look of this sweet Mr. and Mrs!
We're swooning over this darling first look of this sweet Mr. and Mrs!
We're swooning over this darling first look of this sweet Mr. and Mrs!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
In love with this stunning Bride and Groom on their gorgeous big day!
We LOVE this stunning succulent ring shot!
How darling is this wedding sign and their gorgeous venue!
How darling is this wedding sign and their gorgeous venue!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
We love these ladies bright and beautiful wedding bouquets!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
What a great photo of the Bride and Groom and their entire wedding!
We're crushing on this super sweet ceremony!
Such a darling photo of the Bride and Groom after their ceremony!
We love this couple's nautical wedding decor!
We love this fun seating chart idea at this couple's fun wedding!
Love this couple's rustic and DIY guest book initial!
Such a darling and rustic way to collect cards on your big day!
We're loving these gorgeous custom built succulent centerpieces!
Crushing on this couple's bright and gorgeous wedding cake!
We're loving these gorgeous custom built succulent centerpieces!
What a fun idea! This couple used their canoe to hold can drinks at their reception!
Awesome dessert bar at this fun couple's wedding!
Crushing on this couple's bright and gorgeous wedding cake and gold personalized cake topper!
Cutting the cake as Mr. and Mrs. for the first time!
Cutting the cake as Mr. and Mrs. for the first time!
We love this super sweet snap of this couple's first dance!
Such a sweet snap of the Bride and her Mom during the parent dances!
Fun shot of the Groom serving his guests up at the reception!
Crushing hard on this darling wedding day photo!

What is your favorite wedding day memory?

My favorite wedding day memory was when my new husband and I decided to be impromptu dessert servers to our guests after we cut the cake. We had a dessert bar with over 8 choices, including Snickers cheesecake, chocolate covered strawberries and key lime pie. We helped serve each and every one of our guests their favorite desserts and got to spend a few minutes with each person in a non-traditional way. Our unplanned encounter with our guests was a hit and we will always remember the sweetest way we ended the sweetest day.

What did you DIY for your wedding?

As a low budget bride, it was imperative that I draw on my creative side and DIY as much as possible to save money and personalize our special day. I hand painted the stem of every single guest’s dinnerware, I designed all of our centerpieces and our wood and aluminum bar and delegated a great friend to build the items. I asked my family to help propagate succulents from seeds in the containers my friend built. I used paint swatches from our local hardware store to create a seating chart on an old flea market picture frame. I hand cut scraps of fabric to tie around each silverware setting and asked my future Mother in Law to make her secret jam as our wedding favors! I purchased sunflowers and baby’s breath from grocery stores several days before and created all the flower arrangements myself! My Mother in Law hand cut and sewed all of the decorative pennants for the wedding and made all of the appetizers. I purchased a large metal ‘H’ and asked all of our guests to sign that instead of a traditional guest book. We also asked one of our friends to be our bartender and got our specialty cocktail recipes off Pinterest. My talented Sister in law used her beautiful handwriting to create a menu for dinner and the bar on old frames we re-purposed into chalkboards. My Aunt and Father in Law printed all of the programs and I glued Popsicle sticks in between two sides to create a fan and pressed our monogram into a brown craft paper heart and tied a ribbon around the fans to complete them. We used our personal canoe as an ice chest for our cold canned beverages. All of our personalized details were really what made the night so unique. Our guests raved about it for weeks after and we got to save a lot of money!

Did you have a something old, new, borrowed and blue?

I’m not a traditional bride and didn’t participate in this particular tradition on my wedding day.

Any advice for brides currently in the planning process?

My advice to brides is to do whatever makes you and your Groom happy on your big day. I didn’t feel like doing a bouquet toss, so I didn’t. My Groom and I wanted a fun party vibe so we served our guests shots when drinking songs came on. This is your day and you don’t have to play by anyone’s rules. -Megan, the bride

Event Credits

Photographer: Michelle Stoker Photography // Videographer: Fifth Gen Films // Venue: Davis Island Garden Club // Florist: Apple Blossom Florist // Invitations: Wedding Paper Diva's // Catering: 4 Rivers Smokehouse // DJ: Expert DJ // Engagement Ring: International Diamond Center // Rentals: Rent All of Tampa // Transportation: Water Taxi Tampa // Bride's Attire: David's Bridal // Jewelry: Swarovski // Bride's Shoes: Nordstrom // Bridesmaids Attire: Dillards // Bridesmaids Jewelry: Etsy // Hair and Make-up: Sarina Durden Makeup and Hair // Groom's Attire: Macy's // Groom's Shoes: DSW


A funny little fact that you might not know about me is that I was a traveling wedding hairdresser for 12 years before I started this blog. I love wedding hair and it was my favorite to work on behind the chair. So today I’m sharing my professional hair tips with you on wearing a gorgeous “side ponytail” for your wedding day hair style! The look is soft and romantic with a sense of playfulness. It’s also a wonderful hairstyle option for your bridesmaids. If you never wear your hair up but are looking to keep your locks out of your face – this might be the perfect style for you!

These are the absolute BEST wedding hair tips for wearing a side ponytail style!

Hair Style + Image Credits

1 LEFT: Image: Our Labor Of Love, Hair: unknown, Found on: Style Me Pretty // 1 RIGHT: Image: Tessa Barton, Hair: unknown // 2 LEFT: Image: Lovedale Photography, Hair: Jess Fx, Found on: Polka Dot Bride // 2 RIGHT: Image + Hair: Vivian Makeup Artist // 3 LEFT: Image: Candace Berry Photography, Hair: Jessica Fletcher, Found on: 100 Layer Cake // 3 RIGHT: Image: Justin Beck, Hair: unknown, Found on: Bridal Guide // 4 LEFT: Image: Alyssia B Photography & Brooke Bakken Photography, Hair: KL Artistry, Found on: 100 Layer Cake // 4 RIGHT: Image: Shelly Kroeger Photography, Hair: unknown, Found on: Brides


What Type Of Hair Works Best

No matter if you have long, medium or short hair, this style will work – ok, pixie cuts are the exception. There are endless options and combinations of ways that you can weave your curly, wavy or straight tresses into a side ponytail. From a few simple pins back to multiple layers of braiding or twisting; you can take it sleek, messy or somewhere in between. The side-pony creates the perfect foundation for lovely hair jewels, combs, and veils – making it easy to accessorize. If you have thin hair and want the long/full look, your stylist can make it work with the addition of a few of the clip-in type extensions for extra volume and length.

What Hair Color Looks Best

For this romantic, carefree style to look it’s best – you need dimension in your hair color! If your hair color has a very solid, one-color look, the detail won’t show up as well as it would with highlights for example. If you like your solid color, just have your stylist put a few baby highlights maybe a shade or two lighter than your original color, across your crown or just around your face – so that they will peak through and give you that sun-kissed look while adding a brightness to the style.

When looking for the perfect side-pony wedding hair style, my best advice is to search for styles within your hair color! ie. if you have blonde hair, search “blonde side ponytail” or “blonde ponytail wedding hair”. This will give you a much better idea of how it will actually look in your hair. Save multiple images to show your stylist to fully convey what you are looking for.

Getting The Look

Although I like to think of myself as the DIY wedding queen — as an ex-hair professional, I do not recommend DIY wedding hairstyles (unless you are a professional!). Make sure to schedule a visit with your hairstylist for a “trial run” of this style to make sure that you’re happy with the overall look for your wedding day. Styling your own hair for your engagement party, bridal shower and bachelorette party, on the other hand, is totally acceptable and these darling ponytail looks would be perfect!

Dirty hair is a must. One or two days dirty will give you a better foundation for your style. Start with dry shampoo, it adds volume, removes grease and will give you more texture. Curl or wave your hair first and use a working spray on each strand as you go. If you want to get really crazy, you can even pin each curl so it can cool before you let it down, which makes your curls last SO much longer. If you want to accentuate certain strands use a dry wax to piece them out. Once you are happy with your design, finish with a firm hold hairspray. Try not to move too much or touch your hair before portraits are complete; every single turn of your head will make the pony + curls get frizzy. It’s always good to do slight touch ups after your ceremony so that your style remains fresh for the rest of the night.

Check Out These DIY Side-Pony Tutorials:

Gorgeous bride having her side ponytail styled by her hairdresser!

Image: Cristina G Photography // Hair: unknown // Found on: Style Me Pretty


If you have a specific wedding hair style that you want Jen to discuss, please leave it here in the comments and maybe you’ll see it next month!!



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