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Lauren + Joe :: Wedding

All you need is love – one of the truest statements I have ever heard. I believe it with every bit of who I am. And it was proven on Lauren and Joe’s wedding day. It turned out to be one of the nastiest days (weather wise) that I have ever experienced while shooting a wedding, but that didn’t affect these two love birds whatsoever. When I arrived, drenched from running in the rain, Lauren had the BIGGEST smile on her face. She never once complained, got upset, or lost her smile the ENTIRE day. It was so inspiring to me that she wasn’t going to let anything, even the tornado-like weather, ruin her wedding day. And she truly didn’t.

Any good wedding photographer will tell you that shooting weddings is HARD. It’s completely different than anything else because it is ALWAYS in an uncontrolled environment, you’re on a strict timeline, and there is no room whatsoever for mistakes. It’s certainly NOT for every photographer out there.  There is no “rescheduling” because of weather or other reasons… you literally have to make the best out of WHATEVER you are given and sometimes it can be extremely challenging. This is why hiring a talented and experienced wedding photographer is crucial… because it’s nothing like doing a photoshoot. Nothing at all. You may have read my tweet about how Lauren’s wedding was one of the most challenging of my career… and it’s true. The terrible weather made things extremely difficult. It wasn’t only raining, but it was incredibly windy so it made everything almost impossible to do. It also adds a little stress to the day which I don’t normally feel… including worrying about my equipment getting ruined. Again, not easy. By the end of this day I was exhausted. But I knew I had given it 100% and that was all I could do. When I left that day, I felt so grateful and so humbled to have been a part of this experience.

Even though it was challenging, Lauren and Joe’s wedding was to this day one of my absolute favorites for many many reasons. One for their beautiful spirits and love for one another. And two, because of how much time Lauren spent into all of the details of her day. She was one of the most organized brides I have ever worked with and it showed come the wedding day. She incorporated their love for music and all things vintage and I ADORED every.single.detail of this theme. If you know me at all, you know I LOVE all things vintage… so I was just a little excited to shoot this wedding. I knew it would be different than what I normally do and I only wish more brides leaned this way because I LOVE IT. Having a theme for the wedding day is a brilliant idea.

The wedding was set to take place at Lauren’s great aunt’s house, which of course… was just so special, meaningful and intimate. It also ended up being AMAZING for all the shots as the house just happened to be decorated to fit her vintage theme. This day couldn’t have been more perfect for these two people who were brought together through music. I will let the images just speak for themselves. I am certain you will feel the love they share through this story captured through images.

Lauren & Joe – sigh, “thank you” just doesn’t feel good enough. It means SO much that you choose ME to capture this day. I am SO SO blessed I was able to be there to witness it and I won’t forget it as long as I live. Lauren, thanks for being so inspiring in everything you do. Please never forget, that all you need is love. xoxo

The bouquet and flowers were all OUTSTANDING. Randy Jackson of It’s Flower Tyme did an amazing job and got exactly what Lauren was looking for. Hiring a talented florist is SO important!

Every little detail was perfection, down to the flower girl basket and bridesmaid’s bouquets.

Loved the undergarments she chose, GORGEOUS. And the necklace was her mother’s which she also wore on her wedding day.

Even the boutonnieres were so cute and fitting. (the right photo)

Ah, the dress!! When Lauren emailed me several months ago and let me know she’d be wearing her mother’s gown, I DIED!!!!! I have been ITCHING to shoot this wedding ever since. People always talk about their daughters wearing their dress, but very rarely does anyone do. This dress couldn’t have been more PERFECT for Lauren – it fit her like a glove and was absolutely beautiful. It honestly reminds me of something straight out of Anthropologie’s new wedding line BHLDN.

Loved the bridesmaid’s dresses!

Lauren is a graphic designer so naturally she designed all of her letterpress for the wedding… the Save the Dates, invitations, RSVPs, etc. Her talent is so obvious.

She even designed the program for the wedding. It was so incredibly unique and well thought out.

The dress Lauren would be changing in to after the ceremony & the maid of honor’s dress.

There is something I just LOVE LOVE about this photo:

We decided to imitate a photo from her mother’s wedding album which I just love.

Stunning.

Lauren and Joe opted to see each other before the wedding ceremony. Also know as the FIRST LOOK. It was still pouring cats and dogs outside but thankfully her great aunt had a lovely porch for us to have this special moment.

As you can see, the awful weather didn’t change their mood one bit.

Lauren came to my boudoir studio (The Boudoir Vixen) several months ago to do a shoot for Joe. She has kept it a secret all this time and surprised him with it after their First Look. I think his face says it all.  ; )

After letting them share their intimate and loving FL together, we shot some photos of the beautiful couple.

Then it was the ceremony time!! Even though the ceremony was originally set to be outside, Lauren told me right before we started that her mother actually walked down some stairs on her wedding day. So it was obviously meant to be! And I just love the look on her face in the photo to the right. That smile didn’t leave her face all day. It was so amazing and refreshing to see her not care at all that her wedding plans had been changed. She was just so ecstatic that she was marrying Joe, and nothing was going to change that. LOVE.

There ceremony was lovely. I captured this angle of the first kiss…

… and Deirdre got this side.

Bliss:

Even after the ceremony, the weather was still TERRIBLE so we shot the bridal party shots inside and I decided to go for a little more untraditional look.

We then headed to the reception location: The Thirsty Hippo. This place is very special to both Lauren and Joe as they have both spent a lot of time there together, getting to know each other and doing one of their favorite things together, listening to different bands play music. It couldn’t have been a more fitting place for this couple’s celebration. I walked in and absolutely fell in love with how different it was.

All of the details were in-credible. Just see for yourself…

Everything tied in together SO PERFECTLY. Every single detail was so creative and well thought out… even down to the party favors being in a guitar case. Genius.

By the time we had arrived at The Thirsty Hippo, the rain had FINALLY stopped. When I say, that I have never been so happy for the rain to stop…. this was the day I really meant it. I jumped on this blessing and asked the couple to do a few more pictures while we still had a little bit of daylight left. Lauren had changed into her reception dress at this point.

After feeding each other cake, Lauren and Joe went inside to enjoy their friends play for them.

Then they shared their first dance together…

LOVE:

The special thing about this dance is Lauren’s dad and brothers were playing the song they danced to.

After that, Lauren, Joe and Lauren’s mom joined them for a song. It was a family affair to be remembered forever!! I absolutely adored this moment.

After an amazing night, Lauren & Joe paraded down the street with a banner Lauren created and all of their friends behind them. Perfect ending to a perfect day.

And I leave you with another sneak peek of my exciting news announcing later today!! Have you guessed what it is yet? ; )

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  • Have you decided to do special event photo op thingy where people dress up using props and stuff? I don’t know what to call it, but I’ve seen somethings like it before and it looks really fun and makes great memories so you can capture a lot of your guests at events.

  • Amber Muster

    This made me cry. Favorite wedding EVER! It is perfect and beautiful in every way. I must stay I am jealous of that dress as well. No one in my family kept their dress. It is such a special tradition that I wish more people kept!! Keep up the amazing work! I ADORE looking at your new blogs!

  • LOVELY post Courtney! The bouquet is to-die-for. I love the shot of all of the groomsmen on the couch…each shot is full of love!

  • Joy Steward

    This was absolutely amazing :) Soo unique and personable, I enjoyed looking at these pics.

    Thanks,

    Joy

  • DeAnna

    These are the most amazing wedding photos I have ever seen! Stunning and absolutely beautiful! They tell a beautiful story!

  • Emily Malden

    Breathtaking! What a gorgeous couple; I’m so glad they got someone talented enough to do them justice. …and he loves her so much and you caught that on “film.” Genius! I don’t get to browse artful photography much, but when I do it’s yours and you never disappoint–ever!!! Great job, lady! So glad you’ve never stopped using your amazing talent. (btw, one day my wedding photos are going to be worth a mint b/c you are going to be super super famous!)

  • Chasity Weems

    COURTNEY! Are you freakin kidding me?! My ABSOLUTE fav! Amazing job!
    LAUREN- You seriously need to be a wedding/event planner! You have some skills girl! Your wedding was gorgeous.. and I wasn’t even there..BUT that’s what Court does right? I feel like I was there :)

  • Wow, you did SUCH an amazing job capturing this event!! It’s gorgeous, the pictures are gorgeous, the couple is gorgeous . . . such fantastic work! :)

  • Kimber

    I seriously think you get MORE talented as you go…beautiful

  • Love love love it! I’m pretty sure this bride needs to be my friend. Great job Courtney and congrats on the Ruffled feature : ) It’s one of my favorites!

  • Jennifer Culicchia

    You are an AMAZINGLY talented photographer… If you hadn’t mentioned the rain or weather I NEVER would’ve guessed any of that was going on, the photos don’t show it at all. I used to work with Lauren and she absolutely has a unique eye for design and you’re so right when you say that everything was so well thought out & executed. She’s detail-oriented and it does not surprise me at all that everything tied into a PERFECT theme that was 100% theirs & their personalities.
    Looking at your other photos, you are SO talented. If I ever find my love I will absolutely keep you in mind as my photographer. congrats to Lauren & Joe and congrats to you turning out some of the most beautiful wedding photos I’ve seen.

  • Melissa

    Gorgeous photos and couple! I think this might also count as #80 on your 100 before 30 list ;)

  • Dan

    great post, great photos.

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