There is a unique area in our country where life is genteel, ladies are still called ma’am and where men still hold the car door open for there dates. This area is called the deep south and incorporates several different states, Alabama, Georgia, the Carolinas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Virginia and Kentucky.
Southern girls instinctively grow up knowing how to flirt, be a daddy’s girl and speaking that slow southern drawl that has men falling all over themselves to gaze into her beautiful eyes. Ask any traditional Southern girl and she knows who Scarlett O”Hara is. Most of us down here cut our teeth on “Gone with the Wind”, and that dashing rogue Rhett Butler still gets a thumbs up when it comes to making our hearts skip a beat. Indeed, lots of us Southern girls dream of wearing the full antebellum gowns and sipping chilled champagne as we gaze adoringly up into our groom’s eyes.
At a young age many of us decided that we wanted to be a Southern belle bride complete with all the trimmings of our special heritage. The southern belle bride is unique and her trademark is a romantic bell shaped gown made of silk and embellished with lace and pearls. Lots of other little goodies complete this romantic image. If a girl truly has her heart set on being a Southern belle on her wedding day she will usually hold her wedding and reception in a rented old antebellum plantation. Roses, gardenias, magnolia blooms and camillias are the flowers of choice. We love to show off so our wedding favors or are an important tradition that can’t be left out. For a romantic belle bride, “Key to my Heart” bottle stoppers, rose or calla lily sachets, silk fans or old fashioned ice cream scoops make adorable and memorable favors for our guests. Bridesmaids dress in romantic dresses and they might be any color, although from my experience in dealing with my fellow Southern brides, pink is still the all time favorite shade. The groom and his best man are garbed in elegant tuxedos that can either be white or black depending on his taste.
The reception is held on the verandah where champagne, iced tea, whiskey and brandy are served to guests and misty eyed relatives of the happy couple. Along with many boisterous toasts, delicious food of the southern tradition is served, roast duck, red velvet cake, pies, shrimp cocktail, steaks and the south’s signature food, barbeque, after all we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Southern weddings are a wonderful way of showing off some of our finest traditions and cuisine besides being spectacularly beautiful and romantic. If you are a girl who has her heart set on being a southern belle for the day, then go for it. You only have one life to live.