We met Laura for the first time, on her wedding morning, as she came into the room of bridesmaids we’d been hanging out with for the last fifteen minutes. Instantly we knew she’d be a breeze to shoot with. We’d done a lot of chatting with her dad, who’d wanted to make sure every part of her wedding day was special. He’d cared deeply about the details of the day. Quickly we noticed it was less about tons of details for her. Less about the showy flowers. Less about the jewels and sparkling heels. It was one pair of earrings, no necklace. It was Sperry shoes, because of comfort. Simplicity in an effortless kind of elegance matched her personality so perfectly.
Getting into her dress with her mom, as bridesmaids came in for the dress reveal, resulted in smiles, laughter, and just a few tears. We were starting to get the feeling that people is what mattered to Laura over the details. Asking their advice on earrings, helping mom pick out her shoes, even making sure we’d eaten some lunch showed us just how deeply Laura cared for her tribe. We repeatedly had to inform her that she was the center of attention for the day (with a laugh of course) as she tried to “get out of our way” for photos.
Then one of our favorite moments happened as dad came in the room and saw his little girl. Doug here, is amazing, and you can tell Laura gets her people skills from him. As soon as he hugged his daughter he was thanking us for being there, thanking the bridesmaids for being there, just oh so thankful. I’m telling you, we fall as much in love with the parents at weddings as we do the couples. How can you resist when they’re just so nice the whole time!
Down the hall Amy got ready with the boys. The vibe was much the same. Guys hanging out, having a great time, enjoying the day with a little whiskey and a whole lot of laughter. Max got in front of the camera, showing off his amazing modeling skills (he had to have practiced, right?!) , looking sharp in his suit. I took Laura out of the room to visit this super amazing hallway of light for her own quick modeling session. Safe to say, they both nailed it.
Speaking of details though, when the hotel you’re getting ready in looks this amazing…you HAVE to use it as a backdrop. I’m pretty sure it’s a rule somewhere. If it’s not, I’m making it a rule now. So of course the guys, who were ready ahead of schedule, went outside with Amy to grab a few group shots before heading over to the ceremony venue. But don’t worry, the girls had some fun of their own as they fawned over their bride to be. It’s kind of perfect when you have seven bridesmaids…easy enough to fit on their laps!
Now take a moment, and prepare yourself. Remember when I said it wasn’t all about the details for Laura? Below was actually what it was all about. From the moment Max turned and looked at her during their first look, you could see why we were all here. For her, it was all about the way she feels when she sees Max and vice versa. It’s the kind of love we wish upon all of our couples. The “bury yourself in each other because you’re so overwhelmed you just can’t get close enough” love. Honestly, we couldn’t get them to step away from each other for more than thirty seconds and I am so okay with that.
Ahhh, man. I could scroll back up and down those for hours. A smile breaks out on my face every time I see the way they smile, laugh, and hold each other. I can’t hold it in, even though I’ve been staring at these photos for hours already. And you know what? That’s the best part of my job. Seeing this in you and capturing it so you always have it to look back at. Seeing this and being able to show the world how she looks at you as you lead her by the hand or how he closes his eyes in happiness as he pulls you close. Laura and Max, you two are #couplegoals, seriously. This day was all about people and love for you and I don’t think anyone could have said otherwise.
The girls had their photos done in the garden at The Planting Fields, which of course, because Laura is that kind of laid back bride, turned into frolicking through the garden. It was pretty great, we have to say. There’s no better way to bring out real smiles than skipping through flowers. Even our full bridal party photos ended in a cheer and “strike a pose” session. You guys were so much fun to hang out with all day.
Also, speaking of how cute these two are…because I can’t say it enough…this was a completely candid moment where he just scooped her up for a twirl and kiss. Best part? Tina, our youngest sister who was assisting as coordinator at this wedding, was standing next to me and she whispered “You better tell Tim to do that to me in October at my wedding”. I mean c’mon, #couplegoals, again!
Oh and in case you didn’t get enough…we snuck a few more minutes of portraits in because there was an AMAZING greenhouse on the property. It was steamy for more reasons than just the humidity controls, let me tell you. Models. Amazing. I need more greenhouse shoots in my life with super in love couples.
No portrait session can be complete without the most important people of the day though. These folks are no exception. Between raindrops Laura and Max posed with their proud family members. Again, another favorite part of the day? When we take that “full bride and groom families” photo and see the new family that’s become one. Even grandpa got up and away from his walker, proud to stand by his granddaughter on her wedding day.
Luckily for all of us, the outdoor wedding in the garden did not get rained out. God held back the rain clouds until the very end and what resulted was a gorgeous ceremony surrounded by flowers, family, and friends. Not to mention some amazing musicians who were brave enough to face the threat of rain with their beautiful instruments!
From the ceremony we all headed to the Sea Cliff Yacht Club for the reception, where Doug (the dad) and his family have been members for years. Again, simplicity reigned in elegant candles and simple greens. The room was warm and dry and the musicians music floated through the air once more for cocktail hour. I borrowed the rings to get some close ups as Amy mingled with the guests, capturing hundreds of candids, once again proving to us that Laura and Max love these people that came to celebrate them. It was here in chatting with dad that we discovered Laura and Max had put photos of their dog Gordy not only on the koozies, but also on the mens pocket squares! Such a cute way to include the third important member of their little family 🙂
After an amazing dinner (if Amy were writing this you’d probably be stuck reading a whole paragraph about it) of build your own fajitas and burgers and fried chicken with mac and cheese, the party started in earnest. The dance floor was not empty once from the time it opened to the time we left. Laura and Max were in the fray dancing, catching up with friends, and as per usual just being oh so cute with each other. We could not have enjoyed this wedding more. Yes we love the details, I say that all the time, but we love the relationships even more and Laura and Max reminded us how important they are to a wedding day.
I can honestly say we love all our brides and grooms because of how much they understand the wedding day is as much about the love of your tribe as it is about your own love. Being able to capture these moments with family and friends, being able to say #webelieveinfamily, is so much easier because you believe in it too. So thank you Laura and Max, for letting us into your family for one day. We felt the love, we felt welcomed, and we couldn’t be more happy for you two (and Gordy too!).
~Kay (& Amy)
September 20, 2018