Erin McLean Events is a boutique wedding planning + design team specializing in elevated design and exceptional service. Based in North Carolina, We create Southern couture events for the fanciful at heart. Our team of creatives orchestrate seamless and lovely occasions that are true to our clients.


Lauren + Ben | An Old Southern Tradition | The Carolina Inn

Southern Bride

As we begin a new season of the year and welcome the cooler breeze and cozy scarf weather, we can’t help but reflect back on some of the fantastic weddings we were so fortunate to be a part of this summer. One that is particularly top of mind today — Lauren & Ben’s Southern Summer wedding, steeped in tradition, simplistic beauty, and a whole lot of fun. This couple knew how to play their cards right. Not only did they summon up some good old Southern folk lore to chase the rain away, they were blessed with a breathtaking double rainbow to prove it. How you might ask, did the forecast of 100% chance of rain on L+B’s wedding day turn into a sunshine filled afternoon as they said “I Do”? Well you’ll have to keep reading to find out their secret…Miss Dior wedding day

Traditional Wedding Bands

Plum Pretty Sugar Robes Chapel Hill Bride

Lauren had immaculate taste right down to these lovely little robes by Plum Pretty Sugar for her posse of ladies! We love the bright pops of color and all the sweet matching smiles the girls donned on L’s day. Shout out to Makeup For Your Day for the gorgeous wedding day hair + makeup!

university Presbyterian wedding chapel Hill

Chapel Hill groom

Ben’s father served as his best man, their relationship and closeness was so evident throughout the week – such a great touch to include family in your wedding party!

Southern groomsmen North Carolina

Carolina Blue Bridesmaids

Lauren chose a soft blue hue for her bridemaids’ gowns by Amsale, reminiscent of her Alma Mater , UNC Chapel Hill. The bright white and blush bouquets filled with peonies, hydrangea, and of course peonies, were created by the ever talented, Tre Bella Florist. Lauren’s gown may have been the crown jewel of the day, so elegant and quintessentially Southern. A design by Romona Keveza, and chosen from Traditions by Anna in Raleigh, North Carolina, the lace sleeve detail was breathtaking and Lauren was absolutely stunning in it.

Romona Keveza Bride

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Father Daughter First look

Have you ever seen a daddy look so proud. Love this shot captured by Nancy Ray Photography just moments before Lauren walked down the aisle!

Southern Gentleman Groom

University Presbyterian Wedding Chapel Hill

So I promised you the secret to sunshine on your wedding day. True to Southern tradition and proved to be accurate by Lauren + Ben, they buried a bottle of bourbon the month before their wedding day in the place they were to be married.  So once the vows were said and the knot was tied, Ben and his new Father-in-Law dug up the bottle and toasted to the good weather and the new Mr. and Mrs. Leader! When all the guests were safely to the Carolina Inn for the evening’s festivities, the clouds released and Chapel Hill was sprinkled with a sweet spring rain and capped off with the most amazing double rainbow right above the Carolina Inn for all to see.

Bury the bourbon tradition

Wedding day rainbow

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Entryway Centerpiece peonies Hydrangea White and Blush

All of L’s details were as classic and beautiful as she was. Mixing warm ivories, hints of gold detail, and easy flowing greenery, the Hill Ballroom was transformed into a magical space to dance the night away!

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Did you catch that? Another nod to Southern heritage? The Mint Julep cup made a subtle appearance in some of the couple’s cocktail arrangements sprinkled throughout the reception space.

Ashley Cakes Design

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One of my favorite personal elements that we brought into Lauren + Ben’s design was a nod to both of their sweet Pups, Millie and Riggs. Each had their namesake on a signature craft cocktail that guests sipped on throughout the evening. The Champagne inspired Millie and the Bourbon inspired Riggs. 
Signature Cocktails Carolina Inn

Southern Bride Glamour

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Lauren’s mom Shari, surprised her with the most amazing wedding day gift! A live painter to capture Lauren + Ben’s first dance, the end result I am sure is not front and center in their living room!

Dan Nelson Live Painter

Sweet Father Daughter Dance

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Wedding Swag

One last little treat for guests. TWO southern delicacies, Krispey Kreme doughnuts AND Chick-fil-A sandwiches. Guests were thrilled. I can think of a better night cap than that!


southern wedding favors

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Cheers to the new Mr. and Mrs. Ben and Lauren Leader! Wishing you a lifetime of joy and sparkling happiness!

Carolina Inn Sparkler Exit

Thank you to a fantastic team of vendors who collaborated on L+B’s wedding!

Lauren and Ben were also recently featured on Style Me Pretty!

Planning + Design – Carrington, Erin McLean Events

Photography – Nancy Ray Photography

Ceremony Venue – University Presbyterian Church

Reception Venue – The Carolina Inn

Florals – Tre Bell Florist

Band – Groovetown Band

Cake – Ashley Cakes

Rentals – CE Rental

Live Painter – Dan Nelson

Transportation – Carolina Livery

Gown – Traditions By Anna, Romona Keveza

Bridesmaids Gowns – Amsale

Hair + Makeup – Makeup For Your Day 

Calligraphy – Well Addressed Calligraphy

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Kate + Michael | Magnolia Wedding Magic | The Carolina Inn

Green Wedding Details

If there ever was a classically stunning bride, it was Kate. Every choice she made for her wedding added to the elegance of the day. Guests must have known they were in for a treat when they opened their envelopes to find a lovely magnolia inspired envelope holding their invitation. She and Michael didn’t disappoint. Kate donned a beautiful lace gown that fit her just perfectly — paired with a glittering pair of Jimmy Choos, every girl’s wedding day dream. Gifted with a beautiful day full of summer sun, the couple said I do in Chapel of the Cross, a gorgeous church in the heart of Chapel Hill. As they made their exit from the chapel, the afternoon light was just perfect for what turned out to be jaw-dropping portraits captured by Nancy Ray Photography. Kate’s wedding day inspiration came from her Alma Mater, Wake Forest, where the campus is dotted with magnificent magnolia trees at every turn.

Lace Gown

Jimmy Choo Wedding Shoes
Magnolia Invitations, Calligraphy

The hand created invitations were done by the talented Page Palmer, of Penned By Palmer lettering. One of our favorite invitation suites to date. 
Classic Bridal Details, Carolina Inn Bride

One-Shoulder Navy Bridesmaids

Summer Navy Bridesmaid Dresses

How amazing is the sunshine in this photo – Kate was married with her best friends by her side in floor length navy gowns. We loved the one-shoulder detail!

Ranunculus boutonniere

Chapel of the Cross Wedding Program

Chapel of the Cross Wedding Ceremony

Chapel of the Cross Wedding

This photo is one for the wall – just beautiful!!

Ivory Peony Bouquet

Kate chose a simple ivory bouquet of lush peonies for her day. They paired perfectly with her gown and her classically elegant taste.

Father Daughter first look

Navy Bridal Party

Ivory Ballroom Design

Magnolia Chair Swag

Calligraphy Escort Cards

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Kate and Michael said their good-byes under a flood of ivory rose petals from family and friends!

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Thank you to a fantastic team of vendors who worked together to bring this day to life!

Planning + Design – Erin McLean Events

Ceremony Venue – Chapel of the Cross

Reception Venue – The Carolina Inn

Florals – Tre Bella

Photography – Callie, Nancy Ray Photography 

Calligraphy – Penned by Palmer

Invitations – Sealed Design Studio

Cake – Ashley Cakes 

Hair + Makeup – Ceremony Salon 

Band – 10 Spot, Sam Hill Entertainment 

Transportation – A Formal Affair 

Rentals – CE Rental 

- Erin

Anne + Alex | North Carolina Outer Banks Wedding | Erin McLean Events

Southern Wedding Planner

Sweet, Simple. Southern. Anne and Alex embodied these 3 attributes and wanted their wedding day to reflect those things. Which is why they wanted a Beaufort Wedding. Beaufort, NC is the epitome of simple southern perfection. The Beaufort Historical Site reception was the perfect backdrop for their Spring wedding night. Framed by newly bloomed azalea and the ocean air, the Historical Site had just the right amount of vintage southern charm  that the couple was looking for. We couldn’t get enough of all the details that fit just right into the feel of their dream wedding, from the weathered signage, and quaint Ann Street Methodist Church to the fragrance of a Southern Spring coming into its own, the scene couldn’t have been more ideal.

Anne + Alex envisioned a southern wedding that honored their roots. They chose classic attire, from the bow ties down to the classic cut champagne bridesmaid dresses, they hit the mark. Greenery draped chandeliers, a candlelit tent, and heirloom family photos brought the scene together. Sweet southern perfection.

Southern Church Wedding

NC Coast Wedding

Vintage Wedding

 

Southern Bridal Party

Beaufort Historical Site Wedding

Outer Banks Wedding Planner

Outer Banks Wedding

North Carolina Bridesmaids Dresses

Golfcart Getaway

Coast Weddings

Beaufort Wedding

Tent Wedding Decor
Beaufort Tent Wedding

Garden Wedding

Alex + Anne chose a very classic cake topper and simple greenery to accent their dessert spread. We LOVED how these details paired with family heirloom photos dating back generations.

Southern Charm Wedding

What southern wedding isn’t complete without fresh baked biscuits and mason jar cocktails?

Southern Wedding Details
Beaufort Historical Site Wedding

Outdoor Tent Wedding

Beach Tent Wedding

The couple and their loved ones danced away to classic beach music under the twinkling tent lights that lit up the night.

Tent Wedding

Wedding Favors

The couple chose a homemade limoncello as a “thank you” to their guests for celebrating with them. Such a unique and yummy favor idea!

Tent Wedding Exit

Beaufort Historical Site Tent

Wedding Exit

How amazing is this exit?? A vintage, paneled surfers dream car – we couldn’t have chosen anything more perfect to cap off a beautiful night in Beaufort!

Beach Grand Exit

Thank you to all the oh-so-lovely vendors that made this beautiful day possible!

Coordination, Florals, +  Design – Erin McLean Events

Ceremony – Ann Street United Methodist Church

Tented Reception – Beaufort Historical Site

Catering – Belle’s Catering

Linens – CE Rental

Band – The Brothership

Photographer – Nancy Ray Photography

Hair & Makeup – Lula Hair & Makeup

Baker – Sugarloaf Bakery

Tenting – Chair and Equipment Rentals

 

- Erin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Duke Chapel Ceremony + Bay 7 Wedding- Durham Wedding Planner

Jennifer and Nick were married this June at the stunning Duke Chapel and had a glamorous Bay 7 wedding reception. They are a couple that is a sweet as they gorgeous! We loved working with both of their families.

Jennifer has such great taste and style. Did you see her dress? Gasp! She made such personal items for her wedding!

Photographer: Nancy Ray Photography
Ceremony Venue: Duke University Chapel
Reception Venue: Bay 7
Wedding Coordinator: Tia with Erin McLean Events
Caterer: Rocky Top Catering
Lighting: Get Lit Special Event Lighting
Florist: Tre Bella Florist
Cake Artist: Swank Cakes
Linens Rentals: CE Rentals 
Reception Band: Mark Wells Trio
Transportation: Logic Limo
Videographer: Cyclopedia Creative Media
Hair Stylist: Jackie Moore Salon
Makeup Artist: Mac Makeup
Wedding Gown: Vera Wang
Bridesmaid Dresses: Amsale
Flower Girl Dresses: Katina Katoo
Bride”s Shoes: Christian Louboutin
Letterpress Invitations: William Arthur from Ashleigh”s Fine Papers
Calligraphy: Calligraphy by Carrie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Congratulations to you both! Thank  you for allowing us to be a part of your wedding!

 

Check out our feature on Southern Weddings Blog Today!


We are so excited to have our mason jar favor photoshoot with the always fabulous Nancy Ray be featured on the inspiring Southern Weddings Blog. We would love if you left a comment, thank you!


xoxo, Erin

Beaufort Wedding – Jenn + Ford