Oh how I love to shoot the details that define each of my bride’s unique and beautiful style. Before the wedding day, I remind all of my brides to bring everything to the getting ready location, so that I can shoot it when I arrive. A bride’s perfume, invitation suite, programs, notes, gifts, jewelry, shoes, garters, and handkerchief are thoughtfully curated and begged to be remembered as part of the wedding day story. It’s also a great idea to set aside lingerie, so I can style it lying on a chair or on the bed to be photographed before the bride puts it on. Pets are family and also an important part of the story I try to include when I can. Often, it’s a family dog, but sometimes it’s the horse the bride grew up riding from childhood.
In addition to the personal and paper details, the floral, cake and reception design set the tone for the day. There’s always a “wow” moment thanks to the talented planners who meticulously think through every important element with our brides. This post features some of the loveliness I’ve photographed over the years. Hope you enjoy. And, what a pleasure it is to work with the planners featured and listed at the end of this post.
Wedding and Event Planners featured in this post:
Handley Breaux Designs
Jayne Bubis Events
M. Elizabeth Events
Laura Burchfield Events
Thorne & Thistle
Kristen is a self proclaimed ‘Military Brat” who has lived all over, including Germany when she was a young girl. Sean is from Mobile, Alabama, but they both currently live and work in Dallas. So the question became, “Where in the U.S. will we get married?” They decided to choose a city that was a fun destination and an easily accessible distance for their friends and family to travel. They decided on Nashville and The Cordelle with accommodations at The Westin.
Kristen chose a beautiful, yet simple wedding gown design by Truvelle, based in Vancouver, Canada. The bridesmaids wore a soft color palette of complimenting pastel hues by Jenny Yoo. Bella Petali did a beautiful job dressing up The Cordelle with lovely florals, and I’m a fan of any caterer who serves biscuits at the reception. Thank you Mariposa’s Catering!
Here are some of my favorite images from Kristen and Sean’s wedding day in Music City. You’re going to love their First Look. Sean’s reaction was priceless.
PHOTOGRAPHER | Heather Durham
ASSISTANT PHOTOGRAPHERS | Jana Sobel & Colt Fetters
VENUE | The Cordelle
WEDDING GOWN | Truvelle from A and bé Dallas
VEIL | Hushed Commotion NYC
BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES | Jenny Yoo from Bella Bridesmaids Birmingham
GROOM & GROOMSMEN ATTIRE | Joseph A. Bank
FLORAL & EVENT DESIGN | Bella Pateli
CATERING | Mariposa’s Catering
CAKE ARTIST | Susie’s Sweets, Susie Dennison
HAIR & MAKE UP | Brittany Massey
RENTALS | The 12th Table
ENTERTAINMENT | Tim Tyler and Lane Wood
Every beautiful detail of Megan and Andrew’s Birmingham, Alabama wedding was perfectly curated by the talented planning team at Mariee Ami. Megan’s gown was by local Alabama designer, Heidi Elnora, and her blush Amsale bridesmaids dresses were some of my very favorite this season.
I’ve known Andrew’s Mom, Sharon, for years, so I was thrilled their families wanted me to photograph the wedding. I first met Megan and Andrew on a beautiful spring day for their Engagement Session at Andrew’s family’s home on Smyer Lake. After spending a short time with them that afternoon, I knew it was going to be a fun wedding day! And, although they didn’t think so, they were very much naturals in front of the camera.
The details of this wedding are truly gorgeous, but my favorite takeaway from this wedding was the way their families stayed together to celebrate. It’s very easy for the families of the bride and groom to get pulled in different directions at the wedding reception: but somehow they made sure to visit with and enjoy guests, while still staying together. I’m not sure I’ve ever shot a wedding where I was able to get the bride, groom, both families and best friends on the front row dancing together in reception shots. And, instead of them using their iPhones all night, the chose to just live the day and let me preserve the moments for them. What a gift to each other and to me! Their love and adoration for each other, being present in every moment, was the theme throughout the day. These families were such a joy and pleasure to work with!
Please excuse this lengthy post, but there’s just so much to share from Megan and Andrew’s absolutely perfect day, that even the rain couldn’t change. One of my favorite shots of them is under an umbrella. “I’m just a fella, a fella with an umbrella, looking for a girl who saved her love for a rainy day.” — Frank Sinatra
PHOTOGRAPHER | Heather Durham
ASSISTANT PHOTOGRAPHER | Emily Kicklighter
PLANNER | Mariée Ami
CUSTOM INVITATION DESIGN | Mariée Ami
FLORAL DESIGN | Hothouse Design Studio
PROPS | Prophouse Birmingham
WEDDING GOWN | Heidi Elnora
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Mr. Burch
BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES | Amsale from Bella Bridesmaids
CAKE ARTISTS | Bride’s Cake: Magic Muffins and Groom’s Cake: Olexa’s
HAIR & MAKE UP | Celine Russell
CEREMONY VENUE | Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church
RECEPTION VENUE | Country Club of Birmingham
ENTERTAINMENT | Big Blast and the Party Masters
VIDEOGRAPHER | StoryLive Productions
EVENT DESIGN | Design Productions
Katie is full of life, with an energy and enthusiasm that is contagious. What else would you expect from a former University of Alabama Crimsonette? She kinda floats around with her head held high, and you smile a lot when you are around her. And, Matt, the University of Alabama law student…he adores Katie! Sometimes he just gazes at her and other times he looks at her with this amused little grin on his face. It’s obvious he loves her spirit and spunk. His personality perfectly compliments hers too. Matt is more reserved and is okay with just hanging back observing while Katie is the life of the party. They really are the cutest couple!
Handley Breaux Designs planned this amazing wedding and Katie and I had an immediate connection at our first meeting over coffee. She LOVES photography and wanted it all…an Engagement Session, Bridal Session and a wedding day full of images. She even had some fun ideas of her own. As you will see, the details matter to Katie and she wanted to take the time to capture them. We got along splendidly.
Did I mention that at one time Katie worked in the Gus Mayer Shoe Salon? This girl loves some shoes…especially Christian Louboutin heels. In fact, there was a collection of Louboutin shoes and Burberry rain boots in the brides room for her to choose from on her wedding day, which called for a high chance of rain. I prayed that the rain would hold off because Katie had dreamed of having all outdoor photos, with only her First Look in the sanctuary. God answered that prayer. We only had a short sprinkle while we were driving from one location to the next for wedding party portraits. It cleared and we even had a minute or two of sunshine for Katie and Matt’s portraits at the scenic overlook in Vestavia.
I’ll let the images tell the rest of the story. And, I apologize in advance for the length of this post, but it was an 11 hour wedding day full of fun. It was just too hard to leave out some of Katie and Matt’s story. And, you don’t want to miss the reception at Vestavia Country Club, where the bride’s cake was suspended from the ceiling and her Crimsonette friends performed a few of their dances and the Alabama fight song. Roll Tide! Best wishes you two!