A Lively Barn Wedding in Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Kristine Falk (left) and Paige Morrow grew up less than a mile apart on the greenway of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, but their paths didn't cross until they were students at East Chapel Hill High School, where they played soccer together. Attending an annual reunion years later, the pair met again, and sparks instantly flew. Though it was a busy time for both—Kristine had returned to Chapel Hill from Atlanta to attend medical school, while Paige had relocated from Boone, North Carolina, after her father's cancer diagnosis—the women stayed in touch, and were officially together one year later.
Seven years later, on Christmas Day of 2016, the couple was sitting on the patio of their home in their beloved Chapel Hill, when Kristine (who works as a cardiologist at UNC Hospital) presented Paige (the CEO of Extraordinary Ventures, an organization which creates employment opportunities for adults with autism and other developmental disabilities) with a custom-made book titled "I Love You—My Reasons Why." Though Paige's family was in town for the holiday and had been briefed by Kristine on what was about to happen, the Morrow clan soon migrated outside to look at the heartfelt book, too. While it was hard for Kristine to get down on one knee with everyone surrounding her and Paige, she managed to make it happen. The last page read, "Will you marry me?" to which Paige gleefully accepted.
The women were married on the warm evening of June 9, 2018. Welcoming 186 guests to The Barn of Chapel Hill at Wild Flora Farm, the brides describe their special day as one of "pure bliss and overwhelming love and laughter" as they promised their lives to one another, surrounded by their closest family and friends.
Location, Location, Location
For the Chapel Hill natives, getting married close to home was a natural choice. "Since we grew up in Chapel Hill we have been to a ton of weddings at the venues around the area and wanted to try something new. The Barn of Chapel Hill was new, unique, beautiful, and fit our style perfectly," Kristine says.
With a "cocktail casual" dress code, and help behind the scenes from Cheryl Anne Kast and Allison Morgan of Kast Events, the joyful ceremony was held outside of the classic white barn. The expansive property's verdant beauty and lush wildflowers dovetailed perfectly with Paige and Kristine's color palette of whites, pale greens and pinks, dusty blue, and gold accents.
The First Look
Both Paige and Kristine cite their first look as a precious memory, and remind other newlyweds-to-be that you don't have to play by all the so-called rules. "We were initially trying to make it so we didn't see each other before our first look and by doing this we were making the day miserable for us—waking up at the crack of dawn, doing silly things to avoid seeing each other—when all we really wanted to do was hang out with each other," Kristine says.
After spending the morning apart getting their hair and makeup done, the pair shared a "casual" first look when they arrived at the venue. "I was really excited to see Kristine. I had of course been thinking about her all morning and couldn't wait to get to experience the rest of the day with her," Paige says. "I remember having to make myself walk slowly up the stairs where she was waiting for me but the whole time I really just wanted to run over and squeeze her!"
Further bucking tradition, the couple threw a pre-wedding champagne party in the bridal suite with all sixteen bridesmaids.
Both women stunned in sleeveless lace wedding dresses with unique detailing. Shopping together to find styles they both liked, the brides prioritized choosing dresses that complemented both their own individual personalities, as well as the other's gown.
Kristine opted for the "Gardenia" gown by Claire Pettibone, which featured semi-sheer, floral detailing on the back. She picked the dress up at Gilded Bridal in Raleigh. Paige sported the "Tempo" gown by Eddy K from BHLDN, which featured Chantilly lace and silk buttons running down the spine. She says she loved the natural fit of the design.
A Large Party
It was only logical for the gregarious brides to share the joy of their wedding with their closest family and friends, so Paige and Kristine had sixteen bridesmaids in total. Paige's bridal party included her twin sister, who served as her maid of honor, as well as her older sister, longtime friends from Chapel Hill, and close friends and soccer teammates from college. Kristine's bridal party was made up of her college roommate and close friends.
Each woman in the group wore a two-piece set from Revelry, featuring the "Heidi" chiffon tops in white pearl and "Skylar" tulle skirts in gray. They finished the look with hairstyles and jewelry of their choosing.
Flowers in Their Hair
The brides chose to wear flowers in their hair (which were twisted into low chignon styles) as a nod to their outdoorsy venue and a favorite song, "Flowers in Your Hair" by the Lumineers. The blooms in their updos and the entire wedding party's bouquets were designed by Jen Wood of Wild Flora Farms at The Barn.
The brides kept their jewelry simple with sentimental earrings. Paige wore a pair of handmade earrings crafted from a piece of vintage lace fabric casted in gold from a friend's jewelry line. Kristine wore a pair of dangling pearls set in gold that her father got her for Christmas many years before. Comfort was key when selecting footwear. Both women opted for wedge sandals to allow for stability at the outdoor ceremony. Paige wore a pair by Tory Burch and Kristine's were by Cole Haan—though the newlyweds changed into crocheted Toms to dance in for the after party.
The couple's friend, graphic designer Kelly Dunville, created their floral-accented wedding programs and most of the signage for the big day.
"Pick a Seat, Not a Side"
Handcrafted by Kristine's bridesmaid, the playful sign at the ceremony read "Pick a seat, not a side, either way it's for the bride." Before the vows were exchanged, umbrellas were opened around the patio to cover guests. Parasols, cold cans of prosecco, and cucumber sandwiches were also distributed for good measure since it was a warm evening.
A Ceremony of Family, Friends, and Love
In a sweet touch, the couple's brothers played the music for the wedding ceremony, which commenced at 5:30 p.m. on the brick patio. For the bridesmaids' processional, "Can't Help Falling in Love" by Elvis Presley was played on the keyboard. As the brides entered in, a rendition of "Stand By Me" was performed on guitar as Kristine was escorted down the aisle by her dad. Paige, escorted by her mother, soon followed.
From start to finish, Kristine and Paige's ceremony was a tribute to family, friends, and love. Kristine's brother John wrote and officiated the entire service, which proved to be a hit with the crowd. "I still to this day hear about how amazing he was. It was really special," Paige says. "It was nice having someone up there with us that knew us so well." Kristine's other brother and Paige's sister led the readings, including a poem written by Paige's late father that he'd written for their mother for Valentine's Day in 1993.
Hearts were touched again when two friends recited another poem. The newlyweds describe that pair as "pretty burly bro-ish guys," making their deeply personal, funny, and moving ode an especially beautiful gesture.
Happily Ever After
The happy couple recessed up the aisle to "Your Love Keeps Lifting Me Higher" by Jackie Wilson. They wore matching smiles and carried matching bouquets of roses, peonies, astilbe, ranunculus, and hydrangeas.
Time to Party
The ceremony flowed into cocktail hour, held on the lawn outside the barn. Appetizers, prepared by Beau Catering, included crab cakes with red pepper aioli, goat cheese stuffed figs wrapped with prosciutto, and brie, honey, and walnut dust.
The signature cocktails were adorably named after Paige and Kristine's two dogs, Jack (a six-year-old Golden Retriever) and Molly (a three-year-old Doberman.) "The Jack" was made with bourbon, ginger beer, muddled strawberry, simple syrup, lemon juice, and bitters, while "The Molly" was made with gin, simple syrup, soda water, lime juice, cucumber, and lemon—and guests couldn't get enough!
A Fancy Seating Chart
Like the programs, the seating chart had floral accents. Displayed on a wood easel decorated with olive branches, it guided everyone to their seats inside. The brides sat at a sweetheart table, with a banquet table on either side to hold immediate family members. The rest of the guests found their places at round tables throughout the barn's interior, surrounding the dance floor.
A Rustic, Romantic Reception
Elegant Place Settings
Gray linens and stoneware plates made for a totally elegant place setting. Lush flower arrangements of white hydrangeas and roses, pale pink peonies, greenery, and wildflowers pulled the entire look together.
Though a salad of arugula with feta, strawberries, and a walnut vinaigrette awaited guests at the tables, everyone then helped themselves to the rest of the meal from serving stations throughout the space. Entrées included braised shrimp with lemon, garlic, and basil; stuffed pork loin with goat cheese, red peppers, and pine nuts; fried chicken with rosemary gravy; and pistachio-encrusted eggplant finished with sundried tomato and red pepper sauce. Delectable sides featured sautéed haricots verts; avocado, corn, and tomato salad; and baked polenta and parmesan cakes.
A Vanilla Cutting Cake
The couple opted to cut into a classic vanilla cake with buttercream icing from Whole Foods.
Donuts for Dessert
Their First Dance
The happy couple hit the dance floor to a treasured tune: "You Are the Best Thing" by Ray LaMontagne. "This song has been one we have both loved and connected with for a long time. We had already danced to it in our kitchen so many times before, choosing it was an easy decision for both of us," Kristine says.
Happy Wife, Happy Life
The magical night drew to a close with a burst of glitter and glitz, as the blissful brides ran through a sparkler tunnel created by their favorite people in the world.
One week later, Paige and Kristine's adventurous honeymoon began with a trip to Emerald Isle, North Carolina, where they were happy to relax. The pair then jetted to Arizona for a backpacking excursion at Havasupai Falls, before driving to Moab, Utah, for hiking in Arches National Park for a few days. The duo then proceeded to Telluride, Colorado, where they were met by 16 friends (many of them wedding guests) for the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, a beloved summer tradition that they have long kept together.
Photography, Krystal Kast Photography
Location, The Barn of Chapel Hill at Wild Flora Farm
Event planning, Kast Events
Catering, Beau Catering
Flowers, Wild Flora Farm
Videography, James Ryan Films
Stationery, Indigo Envelope
Cake, Whole Foods
Doughnuts, Rise Biscuits Donuts
Music, Joe Bunn of DJ Bunn
Paige's engagement ring, Grimball Jewelers
Wedding bands, William Travis Jewelry
Paige and her bridesmaids' hair, Wink Hair and Makeup
Kristine and her bridesmaids' hair, Christy Swaso of Salon 135
Brides and bridal parties' makeup, Wink Hair and Makeup
Bridesmaids' dresses, Revelry
Lighting, Get Lit Event Lighting