Fall is the perfect time to head to the beach — you get all the beauty of the sand and surf with milder temperatures. When Louisvillians Hannah Brotzge and Sam Brown got engaged, they knew they wanted to get married in Seaside, Florida, and they were willing to wait for more than 20 months to get the perfect destination wedding in Seaside. By having an extended engagement, they were able to ensure they had the perfect chapel and venue they always wanted.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah Brotzge and Sam Brown enjoyed all the beauty that Seaside can offer.

Sam and Hannah met during their last year of high school and dated for more than five years. They dated throughout college and always knew they would get married some day. However their engagement came as a bit of a shock to Hannah. Sam surprised her during their family trip in January 2015 to Deer Valley, Utah, with a romantic sleigh ride. During the ride, they stopped to take a picture at an overlook with Park City in the background. Hannah had a prophetic feeling when they stopped that something was about to happen, and she slipped off the ring that she usually wore on her ring finger and dropped it in her pocket. Right after that, Sam got down on one knee and proposed. They took pictures and returned to the hotel to celebrate with family at a private dinner. As Hannah so eloquently shares, “Our sleigh ride was over, but our journey together was just beginning.”

Though they were able to have the wedding less than six months after they got engaged, they would not be able to get the Seaside Chapel or the lawn at Ruskin Place, where only four weddings are allowed each year, on that short of notice. They decided to book their wedding for October 1, 2016, which was 20 months after they got engaged, and they got all their first choices of chapel, venue and wedding planner. It was worth the wait.

Hannah hired a local event planner, Jennifer Lewis with It’s a Shore Thing, which was the key to planning the wedding away from home and getting access to all the best local vendors and services.

More than 90 guests happily made the trip to the beach for a long weekend, enjoying days in the sun and activities at night with a small intimate group. Guests rented homes throughout the area and got to spend quality time with each other in a relaxed setting.

Hannah’s family rented a large home in Seaside for the wedding that had two master suites and a large, open floor plan. She picked the home mainly for the wonderful natural light that encased it, knowing that it would make for the perfect place to take pictures. (As you will see in the pictures, she was right about the light.)

The reception was outside on the lawn at Ruskin Place with food stations, a five-layer tiered cake and a live band. Guests danced the night away, enjoying a beautiful sunset and perfect, warm fall beach weather.

Hannah, her four bridesmaids and her family all got ready at the house they rented for the week in Seaside. Hannah had matching short pajamas for everyone to wear while they did hair and makeup, enjoying a leisurely lunch at home before the 4 p.m. ceremony. Hannah chose sentimental jewelry and family heirlooms to wear for her special day.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah wears her short pajamas while getting ready, as her dress hangs in the background.

Hannah found her dress at a boutique in California, where she was living at the time of her engagement. She had seen the dress online before seeing it in person, and she ended up getting the same dress in a silk taffeta material. She says it was perfect: “simple, elegant and timeless. It was the perfect fit to complement my body shape, and the only alteration I had to do was for the hemline.”

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah fell in love with this strapless A-line dress in silk taffeta by Amsale.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah and her bridesmaids have a moment and share a tissue while getting ready.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

This pearl necklace is Hannah’s grandmother’s and it was her “something borrowed.”

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

This garter was also her “something borrowed.” It has two ring charms and has been worn by every woman on her mother’s side on their wedding day.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah and her grandmother sewed the ring bearer pillow together. This is her “something blue.”

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

This pearl beaded brooch was given to Hannah by her grandmother on her 18th birthday. It was her “something old” that held the ribbon on her wedding bouquet.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

All of the rings for the couple’s vows

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The wedding shoes were monogrammed Jack Rogers sandals in keeping with the beach-casual theme. This was Hannah’s “something new.”

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Invitations, done by la Happy, were all navy and white.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Wedding invitation envelopes were navy with white writing.

Bridesmaids wore simple navy dresses from J. Crew. Their strapless gowns perfectly matched the silhouette of Hannah’s wedding gown. Considering Hannah comes from a floral-minded family (her Brotzge grandparents founded Colonial Designs), Hannah knew exactly what she wanted for her flowers. Her bouquet was made of garden roses, polar star roses, ranunculus and hydrangeas. The bridesmaids’ bouquets were green and blue hydrangeas.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The bridesmaids’ dresses perfectly complemented the bride’s wedding gown.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah’s father waits patiently with her beautiful bouquet made of garden roses, polar star roses, ranunculus and hydrangeas.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah’s father Patrick steals a kiss with his firstborn.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah and her mother, Mary Beth

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Sam’s father helps him get ready for his big day.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Groomsmen wore traditional black tuxedos with different polka dot socks as their fashion statement.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The handsome groom

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Sam chose teal and orange polka dot socks.

Hannah and Sam chose to not have a first look before the ceremony. They got dressed at their respective homes and then saw each other for the first time when Hannah walked down the aisle. The ceremony was at the beautiful rustic yet modern Seaside Chapel. Hannah had the altar laden with periwinkle hydrangeas, and the aisles had white hydrangea arrangements. She had a mostly white color scheme with pops of green and periwinkle, using one of her favorite flowers, hydrangeas, to incorporate all those colors.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The beautiful Seaside Chapel

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Periwinkle hydrangeas decorate the top of the altar.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

White hydrangeas adorn the pews.

Hannah and Sam said traditional vows before their guests in a non-denominational ceremony. Hannah describes the ceremony as the most memorable part of her wedding. “I still remember standing there saying our vows and us both being so overcome with emotion. It truly was the happiest day of our lives, and standing next to someone you love so deeply makes the journey even better.”

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Cuteness overload with the flower girl and ring bearers

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

These two should be on the cover of a magazine.

RELATED: Argentinian Flavor & Kentucky Tradition Combine in This “Argen-tucky” Wedding

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah and her father begin the walk down the aisle.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah said that they were both so “overcome with emotion” during the ceremony, and that was their favorite part of the whole day.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

A memorable and emotional ceremony

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

You may kiss the bride!

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Mr. and Mrs. Brown

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

And the crowd rejoices outside the chapel.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

So do all the flower girls and ring bearers!

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The flower girls loved wrapping themselves in Hannah’s veil.

The reception was set on the lawn at Ruskin Place, a park in the middle of Seaside, which is kept in such immaculate shape that they only allow four weddings a year there. There was a dance floor, dinner seating and a lounge area all set up in this beautiful venue. Hannah used blue and green hydrangeas as accents and filled the tables with white polar star roses, garden roses, anemones, ranunculus and hydrangeas. She used reflective mercury glass, lanterns and candles throughout the space to give a luminous quality.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

White tables and decor for the reception

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The flowers are gorgeous on these white tables.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

White lounge seating with mirrored tables

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Mercury glass with periwinkle hydrangeas

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

This tall floral arrangement seems to float on the mirrored table.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Lights on the trees and paper decorations

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A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Simple white place settings with a rosemary sprig

Hannah and Sam snuck out during the cocktail hour to take pictures on the beach at sunset. They based the timing of their wedding ceremony and reception on the sunset, which happened at approximately 6:20 p.m. While the guests enjoyed their cocktail hour, the bride and groom took magical pictures in the setting sun, and their guests never even realized they were gone. They rented a Rolls Royce to take them to the beach and back for pictures.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

During the cocktail hour at 6:20 p.m., the bride and groom escaped to take pictures at sunset.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The bride, the groom and the Rolls Royce

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

First car ride together as husband and wife

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah gives Sam a squeeze and a smooch.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

What a dreamy picture!

After the couple returned to the reception, dinner began. Hannah and Sam wanted everyone to be able to eat some of their favorite things, so they opted for three different food stations. The first station included grilled ribeye skewers with chimichurri sauce with spinach salad, smoked gouda mashed potatoes and roasted garden vegetables. The second food station was grass-fed beef sliders, Cajun grouper sliders, panko-crusted chicken fingers and French fries. The third station was a mac ‘n cheese station, which had gourmet mac ‘n cheese with topping options that included mushrooms, fried onions, Andouille sausage, jalepeños, bacon, cheddar, asparagus tips, fizzled shrimp and sun-dried tomatoes.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Guests enjoyed specialty drinks and a full bar.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Sliders from the slider food station

Hannah chose a local cake maker, Rhonda with Confections on the Coast. The wedding cake had five tiers with four different flavors — French vanilla, grand gala butter cake, chocolate pistachio, lemon poppyseed and a second tier of grand gala butter cake. They had a hard time limiting the cake to only four flavors, but they did get to enjoy eating the leftover cake the entire next week after the wedding.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

There were four flavors and five tiers on this beautiful custom cake.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Which layer did they choose?

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Cheers to the newlyweds!

After dinner and cake-cutting, guests headed to the dance floor where the party continued into the night. Hannah and Sam danced to “Everything” by Michael Bublé. Then, Hannah and her father danced to “The Way You Look Tonight” by Frank Sinatra. With the sunset and the lights strung all over the lawn, guests danced to the sounds of Atlanta-based band Az Izz in the beautiful, warm fall night.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah and Sam danced to “Everything” by Michael Bublé.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Hannah and her father danced to “The Way You Look Tonight” by Frank Sinatra.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The beautiful couple surrounded by their parents

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The dance floor was packed all night.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

A fun evening was had by all.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The father of the groom enjoys the lounge area.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

Wedding favors were individually wrapped buckets with saltwater taffy inside to incorporate the beach theme.

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

The happy couple exits in a streamer sendoff!

A Fall Wedding in Seaside Florida

It’s a picture-perfect ending to a perfect day and night.

Cheers to the beautiful couple!

Resources

Venue: Seaside Chapel and the lawn at Ruskin Place (through Homeowner’s Collection)
Event planner: It’s a Shore Thing with Jennifer Lewis
Photography/videography: Pure 7 Photo Studios
Bride’s gown: Amsale from Haute Bride
Bride and bridesmaids’ shoes: Jack Rogers
Bridesmaids’ dresses: J. Crew
Hair: Johnathan Doria at Pure and Couture
Makeup: Jamie at Blush Beauty Lounge
Groom’s formalwear: Samuelsohn tuxedo from Rodes for Him
Invitations, programs & menu cards: Sally Balt of la Happy
Flowers: Florals By The Sea
Catering: Townsend Catering
Music: Az Izz
Cake: Confections on the Coast
Guest Accommodations: Homeowner’s CollectionVRBO & Watercolor Inn

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