Southern Life, Southern Traditions, Wedding Belles

Kentucky Derby Wedding Inspiration

This upcoming Saturday, May 3rd, marks the 140th running of the Kentucky Derby. This horse race is often called “The Run for the Roses,” as the winning steed is adorned with a blanket of red roses after crossing the finish line. Steeped in history and tradition, the Derby calls for mint juleps and large, elaborate hats for the ladies. And while the Derby certainly doesn’t take place in the Carolinas, we certainly deserve (and love!) a chance to celebrate this historical event alongside our Kentucky friends. A Derby-themed wedding is a perfect excuse for bright colors and equestrian motifs, and is especially perfect for brides and grooms saying “I do” the first weekend in May. I have gathered together some of my favorite Derby inspiration, complete with lots of happy red and references to the beautiful horses who are the reason for the day.

Our Derby-themed wedding begins with this beautiful red and black-and-white striped invitation suite, complete with a bugle motif as a nod to the bugler who traditionally plays when it is time for the horses to file onto the racetrack from the paddock:

Kentucky Derby Wedding Invitations  |  Fairly Southern
via 100 Layer Cake

Here come the bride! In an appropriate Derby hat, of course…and accompanied by bridesmaids in blue dresses that compliment the red rose bouquets.

Derby bride and bridesmaids - Fairly Southern
via Wedding Chicks & Junebug Weddings

And now for the groom. Don’t you just adore these bright boutonnieres? The black and white stripe ribbon ties in with the invitations.

Kentucky Derby Groom - Fairly Southern
via Style Me Pretty and 100 Layer Cake

Stunning ceremony setup…

Kentucky Derby Wedding Ceremony - Fairly Southern
via Pinterest

These place cards are one of my favorite parts of this inspired wedding. I love the different color jockey silks guiding each guest to their own table! In keeping with the equestrian theme, the red rose centerpieces are accented with a horse shoe.

Kentucky Derby Wedding - Fairly Southern
via Flickr & Mindy Rice

Of course, now that I’ve said that about the place cards, we get around to the dessert bar…another of my favorite parts! Red velvet cake, Derby pie, horseshoe cookies, and a stunning little red rosette cake…perfection.

Derby Wedding Dessert Bar - Fairly Southern
via Buttercream is Better & Pinterest
Derby Wedding Dessert Bar - Fairly Southern
via The Polohouse & Louisville Wedding Blog

Oh, and we can’t forget the mint julep bar….

Mint Julep Bar - Fairly Southern
via Pinterest

So belles and beaus, what do you think? Would you do a Derby themed wedding? Are you digging this vibrant red paired with accents of blue and subtle stripes? I personally love how bold it is!

xoxo Laura

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