October 18th, was a chilly fall day with plenty of sunshine and the most vibrant leaves I think I’ve seen all season.
Both Stephanie and Brian started the day getting ready at the historic Roycroft Inn, in East Aurora, NY. Stephanie, her mother, soon to be mother in law, bridesmaids, grandmother, and three nieces, all gathered around as the talented ladies from Blush Hair and Makeup helped everyone to look their best. While the groomsmen had a relaxed morning and shared a drink out of their antique beer steins, gifted to them by Brian.
THE FIRST LOOK
Once everyone was ready for the big day, Brian and Stephanie shared a private first look in a tucked away little courtyard of the Roycroft. I personally love the green tones of the portraits we were able to capture there. Check out the tree above their heads with the Dr. Seuss looking berries. Bonus points to anyone who can name that tree! We then headed to O’Brien’s Sleepy Hollow, the location of the main event! The grounds there are so pretty, especially in Autumn. I was blown away by how much color there was in the leaves.
Brian and Stephanie had a lovely ceremony, directed by a close friend who was ordained just so that she could marry these two! Afterwards, we snuck off for a few more portraits with the beautiful couple, before heading to their reception. It was such a fun evening. We even had an unexpected guest, a small little barn owl that hung around for cocktail hour.
Once the dancing started, everyone was excited and ready to get moving! The highlight was definitely all the moms dancing to ‘The Git Up’, which if you haven’t heard it yet, google it NOW! It is hands down my favorite line dance to date. The moms’ dance was awesome and incredibly entertaining, especially with their matching cowboy hats!!
All in all, it was the perfect day. Beautiful in many ways. I am so happy for you, Brian + Stephaine! And I can’t wait to meet the newest four legged member of your family!!! 😉
Ashley + Brian’s Wadsworth Homestead Wedding, Geneseo, NY
I clearly remember receiving Ashley’s email inquiring about their Wadsworth Homestead wedding…. I literally jumped outta my chair! I knew immediately, I wanted to be the one to document her and Brian’s incredible day. Ashley has a bubbly joy that makes it impossible not to smile when you are with her and Brian’s laid back demeanor that quickly puts you at ease.
My assistant and dear friend Rachel and I made a weekend out of our trip to Geneseo, NY. We had a great time at our little farmhouse we rented from AirBnb, full of squeaky floor boards and friendly chickens.. but that’s another story!
I was sooo excited to see the stunning venue, The Wadsworth Homestead. Goodness, I was NOT disappointed. I’ll say it a million times… PLEASE SOMEONE HIRE ME TO COME BACK HERE!! I fell in love with everything about the family owned mansion. Will, the owner, was extremely helpful and kept the day running smoothly.
Ashley and her girls had a easy going morning in the mansion. Getting ready, sipping champagne, along with the occasional spur of the moment dance party.
One of my favorite moments of a wedding day, is when the bride is getting ready, the moment she puts on that veil… it’s like everything hits her all at once, this is IT, I’M GETTING MARRIED! This was true for Ashley. The first time I noticed tears starting to form in her eyes, was the moment that veil went on.
However, that sweet moment was soon ‘one-up’d’ by one of the sweetest things I have ever witnessed, in my entire career as a photographer. The special first looked Ashley planned for her younger brother, Nick.
Before the ceremony, these two carved out a moment to spend together. And it was so special and pure. Nick had some very heartfelt thoughts to share with his sister. When I tell you, that there was not a dry eye in the room… oh yes I was right along with them in tears. 😭
Ashley and Brian knew right away that they didn’t want a first look themselves. They wanted to share that moment while walking down the isle. Now, I know from a photographer’s, logistical perspective, many of us prefer when our clients share a first look…. But I am telling you, the moment Ashley and Brian saw each other from opposite end of the aisle…. I knew, they had TOTALLY made the right choice. I’m not sure I’ve ever witnessed such an emotionally beautiful processional. The joy was literally pouring out of them both.
After the ceremony, we went straight into portraits. How awesome is that floral installation by my girl Holly at Pretty in Pink?! The flowers at this wedding were INSANELY beautiful.
Then we got the party started back at the reception. But not before some extremely emotional and heartfelt speeches from both the maid of honor, Ashley’s sister, Best man, Brian’s childhood best friend, and Ashley’s brother, Nick. Once again we were ALL in tears. I am so glad I have that big ol’ camera to hide my teary eyes behind.
I love that Ashley and her husband Brian chose to include moments in their day that felt right to them, even if it’s a little outside the ‘normal’ or ‘traditional’. It’s so important to remember that this day is about your relationship, your families, and your values. And guess what? That’s different for everyone!
So those of you that are married, what are your favorite memories of your wedding day?
Mine was late in the reception, dancing to Forever Young with my husband and the random fireworks that went off right outside our reception venue. It was a happy coincidence that I’ll always remember. 💥
As Buffalo would have it, on this beautiful fall day, we were also generously provided with 35mph winds. The wind certainly didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits though. Ally, Greg, their families, and closets friends were so happy to celebrate together. My 2nd photographer, and dear friend Rachel and I had a blast documented this beautiful day. We loved photographing Ally + Greg’s Asbury Hall Wedding.
Ally had putting such loving thought into her details. She had this beautiful ring box, which will be forever a reminder of their wedding day. Ally also asked to incorporate her grandmother’s handkirchief. I love that we got to use it in these images. They also were able to use the special heirloom for the ketubah signing before the ceremony! Not only is Ally thoughtful, this chick is talented! She designed and created the signage for the wedding, in addition to the lettering on her beautiful acrylic clutch. The talented Ashley of Ashwood Ink created the invitation set and table cards. Just keep scrolling, you’ll see!
The girls got ready in THE COOLEST room at the Embassy Suites, downton. The views over the city were incredible. It alao provided plenty of room for all 10 bridesmaids to get ready. Ally’s girls even decorated the room with sweet treats and banners!
THE FRIST LOOK
After everyone was looking their best, we headed to Niagara Square for the first look. They shared a few moments together, while Ally’s parents peeked around the corner. Ally’s mother really wanted to witness the moment they saw eachother. I love that we could make it a memorable moment for everyone!
The wind certainly added to the excitement of the day! Everyone was so good about just embrassing it and laughing through it. Personally, these are some of my favorite images of the whole day!
After we had enough of the wind tunnel that some call downtown, we set off for Delaware Park, where we were able to capture some beginnings of Buffalo’s fall colors .
Then it was time to get Ally + Greg married! Their ceremony and reception was held at Buffalo’s Asbury Hall. This old church turned concert hall was the perfect spot for these two. During the ceremony the balconies were full as friends and family lovingly witnessed this special ceremony.
The cutest thing was Greg’s newphew who wanted to be front and center with the bride and groom!
After then I do’s, they kicked off the party with the funnest hora I’ve ever witnessed! I loved all the energy, especially because everyone got involved, including all four parents!
It was such a fun day. I am so glad that I got to be a part of it. Congratulations you two love birds! Thanks for letting us tag along 😉
Sydney + Taylor’s Hotel Lafayette Wedding, Buffalo, NY
I have been looking forward to this wedding day for so long. I’m not even sure how to start writing about such an incredible day, filled with the BEST people.
To say that I grew up with Sydney, doesn’t seem like a full enough phrase for what her family means to me… They are more like family. The kind of people that SHOW UP in good times and bad. I can clearly remember playing with Syd as a toddler, and even then she had the best laugh in the entire universe, and still does.
I know am not alone when I say, that when I met Taylor, it just clicked. It was so obvious that they are the perfect match. And when you love someone as much as we love Sydney….. sometimes the standards can be pretty high of like, is this guy really good enough? But even her parents will tell you, they quickly fell in love with Taylor too.
These two have weathered some seriously gut wrenching stuff together, and have come out stronger and more in love than ever. I am sooooooo over the moon happy for you guys! And I can’t wait to see what is down the road for you both. Thank you for letting me be a part of your beautiful wedding day.
Syd and her best of friends began their day getting ready at the Hotel Lafayette. These girls have the best stories of their adventures and travels together. It was such a happy and laughter filled morning. I can’t think of a better start to the best day ever.
Sydney and her bridesmaids spent the evening before putting together their own bouquets… and MY GOODNESS, they did a fabulous job!! (Anyone need a florist for their wedding? 😉 )
Meanwhile, Rachel, my friend and second shooter, was with Tyler and his groomsmen, as they got ready for the day at an Airbnb over on the westside.
Sydney and Taylor shared a first look in the courtyard of the Hotel Lafayette. Afterwards we got started with some portraits. We had sooo much fun with these two. I think one of my favorite things about their relationship is their sense of humor. Not only are they both super funny, they have the kind of relationship that allows them to laugh and find joy in even the smallest moments.
Over the months of planning, Sydney had been filling me in about some of her details for the wedding day, like coordinating dresses with leather jackets for the bridesmaids and different color suits for the groomsmen. To say the least, I was super excited to see how everything came together. This girl has got style, because everyone looked amazing!!!
After we finished up with the portraits, we all headed to the Kingdom Hall for their ceremony. This is it! Time to get these two married.
Their ceremony was really beautiful. Highlighting their promises to each other as well as scriptural principals to help create a relationship that will withstand the test of time. There was a section where their friend, Mike, who officiated the wedding, read notes that the couple had written explaining why they loved the other person. It was truly special and so romantic! I am happy that they have it all on video to relive those moments.
After the ceremony, we headed out for more portraits! Sydney and Taylor really prioritized their time for photos, which obviously makes me SUPER happy! But you know what… in addition to have a large variety of incredible images of the two of them from their wedding day… having enough time also means that taking pictures can be super fun. Really? fun? Not what most people would consider a good time. But seriously, just ask Syd + Taylor! Not being rushed really does have such a great effect on everyone’s spirits. I had so much fun during their portraits, I am pretty sure they and the whole bridal party did too!!
We all headed up to the Green House room in the Hotel Lafayette, where the cutest mini donuts were waiting for us.
The dance floor, was packed, like you’ve never seen before! I love that Syd and Taylor had a spot on their online rsvp form where guests could request songs that they’d like played. I really think that contributed to the completely PACKED dance floor. I’m not joking, at times I had to stand on a chair just to get a view onto the floor, it was that packed.
All in all it was such a fun day! At one point after I had packed up my gear and was out on the dance floor with Syd, she leaned over, and said, “I am so happy that this is how today is going! “
Sydney + Taylor, we could not be more happy for you and hope that your wedding day was everything you envisioned. I know you are going to have a fabulous life together, and I can’t wait to see where it takes you!
Claudienne & Isidore thought that the photo session was a lovely anniversary gift from her mom. Pretty straight forward, right? Well, what they did’t know, was that it wasn’t the only gift. It was only step one in an evening full of surprises. I had so much fun leading them to their surprise anniversary party where all their friends and family were eagerly waiting for them. Don’t worry, you’ll get to see their reactions at the end!
But let’s rewind a little… We planned the session for Ellicott Creek Park, which was the perfect backdrop, with cool bridges, lots of greenery, and of course the creek! It also happens to be conveniently close to Michael’s Landing, the venue for their surprise party! 😉 Their session was so relaxed and full of laughter. These two have such an beautiful connection, which surely will continue to grow and deepen in the many anniversaries to come!
As we wrapped up the session, I asked Claudienne & Isidore if they would humor me and head to one last location. ‘I have the perfect shot in mind. Just on the other side of this gate is a great view’ They opened the gate, and there was their family and friends welcoming them with a big ol’ “SUPRISE! HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!”
… I mean I had to get a little sneaky right?
It is so evident that the people that worked hard to plan the party have sooo much love for Claudienne & Isidore! They are certainly fortunate to have such a loving group of friends and family.
Thank you Claudia for allowing me to be a part of such a great evening. <3