Meredith Blackburn and Gregg Reyes’ Organic Garden Party Austin Wedding by Westcott Weddings
Gregg Reyes was tired of waiting for the perfect moment. He had met Meredith Blackburn at a work conference, but the timing had been off, and they hadn’t connected. Thanks to a mutual friend, though, they had reconnected months later. And that’s when Gregg just went for it.
Only after a few hours on the phone, Gregg, who was living in Texas, asked Meredith if he could fly out to see her in Tennessee. He was surprised that he did it – but even more surprised when she said yes. “I remember on my connection flight texting my best friend, ‘What am I doing?’” he said. “I’m going to fly to Tennessee to have pizza with a girl I don’t know.”
But the feeling he had about Meredith was right. The couple started dating in January 2015 and by October of that year, Meredith had moved to Austin to be with Gregg. “I would go to Timbuktu if that’s where I had to go,” Meredith said. “I just knew I wanted to be with him.”
After the move, Meredith knew a proposal was likely coming – and she easily went along with Gregg’s plan to propose without realizing it. Gregg’s mom called one morning to say she had paid for a spa day in Austin but couldn’t make it, so she offered it to Gregg and Meredith. Meredith was used to Gregg’s mom being generous, so this didn’t set off any alarms for her. They spent the day at a spa in Austin – with only Gregg knowing that in a few hours, he would propose. For Gregg, it was the most stressful day at the spa ever. Afterward, Gregg asked Meredith to walk to a nearby dock with him. When they turned a corner, there was a blanket with flowers and their initials set up. Gregg told Meredith how much he loved her and then proposed. They spent the evening with family celebrating. “I didn’t expect any of it,” Meredith said. “It was perfect and amazing.”
Afterward, they quickly got into wedding planning mode. Meredith went with her family the weekend they got engaged to look for a dress. At Unbridaled in Austin, she found an Augusta Jones gown with a decorative lace neckline. She added a Jimmy Choo belt and veil and fell in love with how she looked and felt in the gown. “I never second guessed it,” Meredith said. “I felt so comfortable in it. I loved the neckline of it. It was so different from anything I had seen.”
Gregg and his groomsmen, in line with the natural, organic theme that they chose for the ceremony, wore navy suits. Gregg’s favorite part of his wardrobe was the custom-made cowboy boots he wore with his and Meredith’s initials inscribed on the back of them.
For their wedding, Meredith and Gregg chose the Winfield Inn to fit the romantic, garden party feel they were going for. They loved the bare beauty of the venue. Built in 1883, the Winfield Inn features a vintage mansion on 27 acres, shaded by live oak trees. Gregg and Meredith chose décor that enhanced the elegance of the venue. Overall, Meredith imagined her wedding to be elegant, but not overly formal. For flowers, Meredith wanted something natural and organic. She chose neutral tones of peonies and garden roses and mixed in garland and other greenery. For their ceremony, they incorporated a scripture reading and communion, as a way to recognize the couple’s faith and what marriage meant to them. “We wanted people to feel really welcomed, and we wanted it to be about our marriage and us becoming one, and the romance of us and our story,” Meredith said.
At the rehearsal dinner at Gregg’s parents’ lake house on Lake Austin, Gregg had a big job: the serenade. Dating back generations, Gregg’s family has carried on a Mexican tradition of the groom serenading his bride-to-be the night before the wedding. “That was one of the things I’d looked forward to the most,” Gregg said, “Because for me, it was like a right of passage as a man. To sing and to do that, live action in front of many men I’ve watched do that before, that was a big deal.”
They decorated the lake house with long farmhouse tables, giving it a fairytale vibe. They had a margarita bar and mariachi band. Meredith and her bridesmaids watched Gregg and his groomsmen as he serenaded her with “Feet Don’t Touch the Ground” by Stoney LaRue. “He played that on the guitar and sang it to me,” Meredith said. “Here are 100 people there watching him, and it was so sweet.”
Before the ceremony, the couple chose not to do a first look, upon Gregg’s request. Instead, they wrote each other letters, enclosed with gifts, including a David Yurman bracelet and Tiffany earrings that Meredith wore on the wedding day. Meredith fondly remembers the words Gregg wrote to her. “He was just talking about marrying me and how excited he was and how he prayed for this day for so long, and now it was here,” she said.
During the dance party at the reception, they passed out feather boas, sunglasses and sombreros for their guests to wear on the dance floor. It was a big hit, and their friends kept some of it for mementos of the big day.
As the night wrapped up, thankfully, so did the rain. Meredith and Gregg’s guests lined the pathway leaving The Winfield Inn, holding sequined ribbon wands. Meredith and Gregg left in a limo, on their way to Gansevoort Hotel in Turks & Caicos.
They both agreed – it was the perfect day. “It was so beautiful and so much fun – and it was just us, every little aspect of it was both of us, from what drinks we served to how it looked to where it was, just the whole vibe,” Gregg said. “It really did just embody everything we are.”
accommodations / W AUSTIN
bridal gown, accessories / UNBRIDALED
decor/rentals / MARQUEE EVENT GROUP, LOOT VINTAGE RENTALS
entertainment / THE ROYAL DUKES
florist / CLEMENTINE BOTANICAL ART
wedding planner / WESTCOTT WEDDINGS
other local vendors: Feathers & Frosting • Word of Mouth Catering • Sweet Sunday Events • Mariachi Amor • SimplyMandy • J.RoCro Arts + Letters • The Winfield Inn • R&R Limousine • Alex Widmer Video • Rae Cosmetics • Michelle Boyd Photography