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Julia & Jonathan
Kelly Skinner | Photo: Heidi Geldhauser | June 11, 2013
Comfort foods, a majestic plantation and timeless traditions set the tone for two of Atlanta’s most stylish sweethearts.
“The initial reaction for both of us was, we don’t want this to be a long engagement; we just want to be married,” recalls Jonathan Baker after his proposal to Julia Canaday. The media darlings and Atlanta creative couple—Baker is a digital marketing strategist for TBS and TNT; Canaday is a public relations powerhouse—first met several years ago at a media dinner.
Though the two became instant friends with a mutual adoration for each other, it wasn’t until two years ago that their true love ignited. “We went out, met up for drinks and hit the gas pedal basically. We were just like, ‘Why aren’t we together all the time?’” says Canaday. Baker caught Canaday by surprise with a swoonworthy proposal in the mountains of Highlands, N.C. Within six months, the love birds were married.
“We had gone to Charleston for New Year’s the year before, and we were taken aback by how charming the city was with all of the wreaths on the doors,” says Baker of their wedding site. “Hosting an out-of-town wedding was also a way for us to keep it small and intimate,” adds Canaday.
Despite a few mega mishaps—two church cancellations, getting double-booked on the getaway car and a makeup cancellation—everything unfolded flawlessly, thanks in large part to wedding planner Sebrell Smith.
“I just wanted it to be really romantic, dreamy and ethereal,” says Canaday, who saw her dreams realized among Charleston’s stunning backdrop. After a traditional ceremony at the historic St. Luke’s Chapel, the happy couple joined guests at the Lowndes Grove Plantation, where Southern-tinged details were grounded in timeless elegance.
Partygoers dined on a family-style feast of fried chicken, shrimp and gouda grits, braised short ribs and a slew of homestyle fixin’s all prettily plated on mixed-vintage china. Baby’s breath made an appearance throughout and lent a dreamlike element to the sweet storybook wedding. The couple’s foodie- and musician-dotted guest list of 115 danced to the ragtime rhythms of Blair Crimmins, taking short respites for cake and macarons, and to cozy up next to a waterside bonfire.
While the wedding day was incredible, breakfast the next morning was sheer heaven. The couple rented a beach house and invited 60 of their nearest and dearest to a Southern brunch prepared by their culinary pals. As guests noshed on comfort foods, the newlyweds glowed in their good fortune.
“I knew it was going to be a great weekend,” reflects Baker. “I had no idea it was going to be the best weekend of my entire life.”