Jackie and Ross's Elegant Nashville Wedding With a Surprise Ending

The Couple

Nathan Westerfield

Breakfast in bed and San Francisco are two loves of Los Angeles-based songwriter Ross Golan and freelance marketer Jackie Karwoski. One morning, Ross woke up Jackie with the most important meal of the day, along with Champagne and their pug Peter dressed in a tux. He then serenaded her with an original song called "Around" and proposed right then and there. She said yes, and then he whisked her off to the city by the bay for the weekend, where they celebrated.

One year and one day later, on August 30, 2014, they journeyed off to another city—Nashville, Tennessee—for more celebrating, and sadly, some unexpected weather. But even pouring rain couldn't dampen the spirits of the attendees at this soirée, which Jackie describes as a "classy mudfest."

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The Stationery

Nathan Westerfield

Smock invites were ordered through Landis Stationery. The letterpressed and foil-stamped design boasted a floral motif in a nod to Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art, where the event would be held.

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The Fashions

Nathan Westerfield

Jackie wore a lace and tulle sweetheart-neckline Monique Lhuillier dress with matching veil, J.Crew shoes, and diamond-and-platinum studs she received as a wedding gift from her father.

Ross sported a Hugo Boss suit and Tod's shoes.

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The Bouquet

Nathan Westerfield

Melissa Broadwell of Vintage Florals created the bridal bouquet, which included dahlias, Sahara roses, Queen Anne's lace, ranunculus, astrantia, lisianthus, tuberose, jasmine, eucalyptus, pittosporum, and Jackson vine.

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The Bridesmaids

Nathan Westerfield

Jackie's bridesmaids wore Amsale pale blue-gray chiffon gowns.

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The Bridesmaids' Bouquets

Nathan Westerfield

The bridal party carried petite bouquets that mimicked Jackie's. They were made up of Sahara roses, garden roses, lisianthus, astrantia, tuberose, ranunculus, spray roses, pittosporum, and eucalyptus.

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The Guys

Nathan Westerfield

Ross's groomsmen (and ushers, shown here) sported suits custom-made by a tailor in Los Angeles. The blue fabric was a nice complement to the soft hue of the bridesmaids' dresses. Sprigs of wax flower and lisianthus buds were accented with seeded eucalyptus, Italian pittosporum, and agonis foliage for the guys' boutonnieres.

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The First Look

Nathan Westerfield

"I told myself I would never see my groom before walking down the aisle," Jackie says. "Well, we did do a first look and I now would highly recommend it. It gives you and your future husband a moment to stand still with each other and soak it all in before the craziness begins."

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Ready to Go

Nathan Westerfield

Ross's nephew, Owen, served as ring bearer, carrying the couple's wedding bands to the ceremony and down the aisle.

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The Ceremony

Nathan Westerfield

The ceremony, which took place in the museum's drawing room before 150 guests, was aglow with added candlelight. A cellist played "Stand by Me" as Jackie and her dad walked down the aisle. "The entire day felt very surreal leading up to the ceremony," Jackie says. "What made it real was seeing my dad and getting ready to walk down the aisle with him."

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The Officiant

Nathan Westerfield

The pair's dear friend, Jonathan Sadowski, got ordained for the occasion. "We met with him several times before the big day," Jackie says. "As for what was said during the ceremony, it was all a surprise for us, which made it fun! It was unconventional, hysterical, sincere, and perfect."

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Cocktail Hour

Nathan Westerfield

Due to rain, the cocktail hour moved indoors, but guests were still treated to the sounds of a bluegrass trio and vocalist, and were able to stroll through the Andy Warhol exhibit on display in the museum. A gold calligraphed sign by Jessy Early of Early June outlined the drinks on offer.

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The Seating Chart

Nathan Westerfield

Jessie Early's calligraphy accented the seating chart.

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The Reception

Long Reception Table with Red Flower Arrangements
Nathan Westerfield

For the reception, a draped tent at the back of the mansion was filled with long farm tables and clear ghost chairs.

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The Place Settings

Nathan Westerfield

Arrangements of Sahara and Vandella roses, dahlias, lisianthus, spray roses, tuberose, alstromeria, wax flower, Queen Anne's lace, carnations, and football mums, along with Jackson vine garlands, ran down the center of each of the 16-foot tables. Natural linen napkins, a menu, and modern flatware marked each spot. A vase pulled double-duty, holding both a few stems of astrantia and agonis foliage and an envelope calligraphed with each guests' name. Inside the envelopes were notes explaining that a tree had been planted in the guests' honor through the American Forests Global ReLeaf program.

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Dinner Is Served

Nathan Westerfield

The meal kicked off with an arugula salad with roasted baby beets, goat cheese, candied Benton's bacon, pecans, white balsamic vinaigrette, and a Gruyère crouton. A choice of fillet of beef with red wine sauce or seared halibut with lemon buerre blanc and crispy matchstick leeks followed. The entrées were accompanied by Gruyère-Parmesan potato gratin, roasted heirloom vegetables, tricolor carrots, pattypan squash, asparagus, and yeast rolls and petite herb biscuits, all prepared by Kristen Winston Catering.

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The Cakes

Nathan Westerfield

A total of seven cakes by Dessert Designs were set out among Jackson vines. For the traditional slicing, the couple cut into a caramel confection (at right).

"We always wanted multiple cakes! Specifically because Ross's favorite food is cake. No joke," Jackie says. "Out of all the delicious food in the world, his absolute favorite food is cake with a lot of icing! We chose to cut into the caramel cake because it is honestly the best cake either of us have ever had."

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Take Your Pick

Nathan Westerfield

Calligraphed Lucite signs noted the flavors—red velvet, almond amaretto, vanilla bean, chocolate truffle, and strawberry and cream cheese—inside the visually diverse cakes. There was also a hallelujah cake (made up of chocolate truffle cake and sour cream pound cake).

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The First Dance

Nathan Westerfield

For the newlyweds' first dance, they twirled to the same song Ross sang before he proposed, his original tune, "Around."

"Throughout the year of planning, planning, and more planning, we said that if we made it to the first dance, we knew everything was going to be okay," Ross says. "It was a whole lot more than okay." And Jackie agrees, also noting the first dance as her favorite moment of the wedding.

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Unwelcome Weather

Nathan Westerfield

It rained on and off throughout the day, but by the time the reception came around, there was a flash-flood warning. The grass floor of the tent soon turned to mud, but everyone embraced it by rolling up their pants and kicking off their heels. "I loved seeing everyone embrace the spirit of our wedding," Jackie says. "There was a lot of love in the room and we could feel it."

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The Sources

Nathan Westerfield

Photography: Nathan Westerfield

Location: Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art

Event Planning and Design: Jessica Sloane Event Styling + Design

Catering: Kristen Winston Catering

Late Night Snacks: Crankees Pizzeria

Flowers: Vintage Florals

Videography: Needle and Thread

Calligraphy: Jessie Early of Early June

Cake: Dessert Designs

Music: Tim Hiber

Rentals: Music City Tents & Events; Liberty Party Rentals; 12th Table

Hair and Makeup: Jordan Byers

Lighting: Nashville Event Lighting

Draping: Visual Elements

Transportation: Gray Line

Air-Conditioning: Sunbelt

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