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Archive for the ‘outdoor weddings’ Category

Bailey and Tom had an intimate tented wedding celebration on Bailey’s family farm in Stouffville. They wanted the wedding to reflect who they are; fun and casual, so the family farm was a perfect fit. The farm kept it rustic and elegant and together with the couple’s family and friends, they were able to do everything themselves. Not only did this save money, but left an impression of the couple, their style, and their life ambitions together.

Everything was scheduled on site which made the day relaxed and all about the party! Guests were invited to camp out on the property and a cozy seating area dotted around a campfire circle waiting in anticipation for marshmallow roasting. The couple’s fun touches were the “Dance Floor Rules Sign” as well as two of their favourite drinks as Signature Drinks. Bailey’s family collects classic cars, so they incorporated some of the cars into the décor as well as the pictures. Bailey’s mom and aunt did the planter arrangements, and Bailey’s family friend Patty Yake did the head table decor, dessert and gift table as well as the flowers for the arch. Another friend named Patti Skelton was a huge support for the family from beginning to end and was in charge of purchasing decor, and the runner for last minute errands on the wedding day. All in all, the couple had a huge support system that they can’t thank enough!

Bailey loves horses, so she wanted to arrive in a horse and carriage as a surprise to everyone except her mom. All décor and details were collected, donated, or bought by the wedding party and parents of the bride and groom. Hay bales were covered with burlap as ceremony seating, and a fake flower arch was the focal point for the ceremony. I had never seen a fake flower arch but I was impressed at how real it looked. It is a brilliant idea to prepare if you plan on doing your own flowers ahead of time! The bridesmaids and moms helped make all the guest favour home-made jams and the set-up of the reception was a full family effort. Overall, the decor was simple and elegant with a country rustic flair.

Bailey included a portion of her mom’s dress in her dress, as well as a picture of her dad on her bouquet as he had passed away – even though her stepdad walked her down the aisle, she still had a piece of both her mom and dad with her. Tom first met Bailey in Toronto, so his cuff-links were a map of the city (which also happened to show Stouffville, the location of the wedding).

You could feel the love on this gorgeous wedding day, understanding that family and friendship means the world to Bailey and Tom. The afternoon ceremony was tearful and heartfelt as the couple pronounced their affectionate vows to each other. There wasn’t a dry eye in the field.

I couldn’t be more honoured to be there to capture the day. Bailey and Tom; you have something truly special. I hope you remind yourselves everyday of the love, friendship and admiration you had for one another the moment you said “I will”.

All the best to you both!

xx – april

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FROM THE BRIDE’S MOUTH

WHAT WAS YOUR FAVOURITE DETAIL?

“Our homemade jam favours, as the bridesmaids and moms made it together. It took an entire day of prepping the jars, making the actual jam, and tying on the burlap tops with the perfect bow.”

WHAT WAS YOUR FAVOURITE MOMENT?

BAILEY: “After the ceremony was over, walking back up the aisle hand in hand with Tom to everyone clapping and cheering – it hit me that we were officially married and could now celebrate! Also the bridal party entrance to the reception – we all got to have a lot of fun with that and set the tone for the rest of the night. “

TOM: “First seeing Bailey as she arrived in the horse drawn carriage and walked down the aisle.”

WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST DANCE SONG AND WHY?

“Our first dance was “10,000 Emerald Pools” by Borns. We both love this song and Borns, so the acoustic version of this song seemed like the perfect fit for our first dance. Also as sappy as it may sound, the lyrics capture the way we feel about each other – at the end of the day all we need is the other person.”

VENDORS

VENUE

Bailey’s family farm in Stouffville

OFFICIANT

Leslie Sedore

CEREMONY MUSICIANS

Walla Music

DJ

Bob Hawkins

HORSE DRAWN CARRIAGE

Lionel’s Farm

FURNITURE/DECOR RENTALS

Affair Rentals

FLOWERS

Stouffville Florist

MAKEUP

Katie Assinck

HAIR

Rhonda Cox

DRESS

David’s Bridal

SHOES

Project Elegance

SUIT

Newman’s Menswear

BRIDAL PARTY ATTIRE

Bill Levkoff

BRIDAL PARTY GIFTS

Bridesmaids: robe, champagne glass, embroidered maeup bag, Kate Spade Bracelet

Groomsmen: Cufflinks, bottle of liquor, tickets to Jays game

STATIONERY

Debbie LeBuffe

PIES

John Leadbetter

FAVOURS

Home-ade Jam

BUDGET

$20-30K

NUMBER OF GUESTS

125

SECOND SHOOTER

Lelania

 

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Erica and Luke are a fierce and funny duo and here is the layered back story of how they met:

“In 2009, Luke and his friends were randomly put on a Sail Croatia boat with two of Erica’s friends (one of them, Kayla, was a bridesmaid) for a week-long sailing trip.

Fast forward to 2011, Kayla was visiting Erica, who lived in Vancouver, and Luke was living in Whistler to do a snowboarding season with Richard ( a groomsman). Kayla, who had Luke on Facebook still, said “I met this guy a few years ago, I don’t really know him, but he was cool and he would probably let us stay on his couch for free if we want to go snowboarding”. And so Kayla and Erica went up to Luke’s. Kayla ended up deciding to stay in Whistler for a few months, so Erica would go up every weekend (between studying her masters degree) to hang out with Kayla, Luke and their friends.  Within a month, Erica & Luke were dating (but they pretty much got together after about 5 days knowing each other!). The rest is history!”

This story seems like perfect fate. I love to hear how couple’s meet and especially love circumstances so looming on chance.

Since Erica is a fellow Canadian and Luke is an Aussie, but both are living in Australia, the couple concluded that they would need to have two weddings in order to properly celebrate with all the people they love so dearly.

The Canadian wedding was chosen to be as casual and backyard bbq style as possible. 40 people flew in from overseas and they wanted to make sure that the wedding was focused on their guests and the party. Since neither Erica or Luke are very serious people, they wanted it to be fun and laid back!

A pig roast was the inspiration with lots of lawn games and outdoor seating to encourage guests to mingle and get to know one another. Since people were flying from all over the world for this wedding, Erica and Luke wanted to make sure that they could spend tons of time with each friend and family member.

Since the couple lives overseas, most of the planning and coordination was done by Erica’s extraordinary mom and Aunt Debbie. Aunt D made all of the chocolate favours, which were Canadian themed (loonies, maple leaves etc) and a campfire with feature smores were part of the Canadian integration. Since most Aussie’s have never heard of smores and are banned from making campfires, this was especially entertaining.

As for decor, Lesley Lebel, the owner of the stunning venue Sagewood Farms, handled all of that with her personal collection of vintage dishware, furniture, and more!

Even though I only knew you two for a day, I feel like I’ve known you for years. You make an obvious loveable pair, evident by the outpouring of love and admiration from your family and friends from around the globe. Wherever your adventure together goes, go with all of your heart.

xx- april

 

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“FROM THE BRIDE’S MOUTH”

FAVOURITE DETAIL

“The popcorn bar! We wanted an affordable way to provide food/snacks to everyone at the end of the night after all the shots, and the popcorn bar was a hit! Also, the cupcakes – Erica LOVES baking them at home, so they were a perfect touch, and the caterers did a BEYOND BEAUTIFUL job decorating all of them and our cake… just gorgeous. Luke’s was the beer cans!! The Molson Canadian beer cans were a bit retro and also very Canadian, and they just fit the scene perfectly (and the Aussies loved them… haha!)”

ERICA’S FAVOURITE MOMENT

“My favourite moment was reaching the base of the aisle with my dad; everyone under that big beautiful tree, and my husband-to-be looking like a stud at the other end of the walkway.”

LUKE’S FAVOURITE MOMENT

“My favourite moment was at the end of the night, with a sparkler send-off to the Canadiana camping tent where we spent our first night together as man and wife.”

FIRST DANCE SONG

“Island in the Sun by Weezer – It’s been my favourite song since forever, and when we got together, Luke really got into them as well. We even saw them live at a festival in Squamish BC, where the lead singer sang the song while walking beside us in the crowd! The band has always held a special place for us, signing along to their songs on road trips, seeing them live in Melbourne, and the song was perfectly upbeat, laid back, and very paradise-y (with a bit of a rock-y chorus), perfect for our day.”

WHAT ERICA HAD TO SAY ABOUT THE MOST IMPORTANT FACTOR WHEN CHOOSING A PHOTOGRAPHER

“Number 1 important factor, is that the photography was non-cheesy, candid and natural photography, which you don’t just nail in 80% of your portfolio; you nail it every time. So that was a major factor. But we also fell in love with your stuff the moment we read how you try to take lots of photos of the guests so that we can remember that too – obviously, with everyone flying in, that was a big thing for us. And finally, the finishing and editing of your photos is just so natural but with that light, pink-y kind of finish that makes it look like a fantasy (which it was). It’s just enough editing to make it beautiful but still totally imperfect like the subjects are. And to be honest, I totally think you could charge more than you do. The only other photographer that we considered other than you was $4,500 for one photographer. That was super expensive, but I thought you were a total bargain for what we got, and now that we’ve seen the result… like, we legit won the lottery.”

VENDORS

VENUE

Sagewood Farms

OFFICIANT

Rob Brouwer

CATERING

Feast Your Eyes Catering

CAKE

Feast Your Eyes Catering

FLORALS

Mint Floral Co

MAKEUP + HAIR + NAILS + TANS

Brooklyn Salon+ Spa

DRESS

Maggie Sottero

GROOMSMEN ATTIRE

Tip Top Tailor

SHOES

Klub Nico

FAVOURS

Homeade Chocolates

BRIDAL PARTY GIFTS

Coordinates bracelets from Etsy + Etsy Robes

STATIONERY

Custom designed by family friend

MUSIC

Spotify playlist

BUDGET

Between 30-35k

NUMBER OF GUESTS

130

SECOND SHOOTER

Jasper

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A few years ago I met Mike through shooting his brother Chris’ wedding. I have the extreme pleasure of often meeting clients this way and by default, developing a relationship with them before their wedding even approaches.

Mike and Shawna wanted their wedding outdoors and surrounded by a backdrop that they couldn’t get in Toronto; and that was a stunning beach! With the help of Luxe Weddings, the couple chose to stay at the intimate resort Azul Beach and have their wedding off-site at Marina Maroma in Playa del Carmen to be certain that their guests would have an exclusive and private wedding experience.

The day was perfect and typical Mexican weather other than an intense wind that got stronger as the day progressed. A high of 34 degrees, deep blue skies and a humid heat. I was thankful for the wind!

The groomsmen wore navy blue suits and the bridesmaids blush pink dresses. Shawna’s gorgeous and form-fitting lace gown by Paloma Blanca was a perfect selection for the tropical and hot climate. At the last moment she chose to have her hair down but partially pulled back because of the wind, and it couldn’t have been a better choice. She looked absolutely stunning and her hair stayed perfect all night!

The day started off relaxed as Shawna and Mike enjoyed the beach in the morning and got ready in the afternoon. As Mike got a massage, Shawna did her own makeup and she looked flawless!

The couple started with a first look in-between matching doorways which the couple say was the most romantic moment of the day. We then took family portraits, bridal party and couple shots and made our way to the venue for the evening beach ceremony.

The ceremony was lightly decorated since the scenery spoke for itself but it did include gold charivari chairs, white lanterns, and a beautiful arch with blush and white floral and branches weaved through the top. The ceremony was short and sweet and led by the couple’s cherished family friend Laddie Haines. Moments after walking down the aisle together, Shawna and Mike twirled and kissed in private bliss. They were finally married!

A cocktail hour ensued at the Dolphinarium and although not planned, the dolphins did a show for the guests as they enjoyed the couple’s signature Raspberry Mojito cocktail.

Guests then made their way to the reception set up on the beach for sunset. The wind had progressed to a level so high that the planner, Meghan got the venue to install a fabric wall to block the sand and wind from the tables. Luckily it helped! Although the wind prevented some decor details from being set up, it was really a Godsend to help keep it cool for guests. No one ever noticed either, as the setting was certainly stunning on its own.

Guests collected their star fish tag including their name and table number. At their table they found their name hand written on sand dollars placed on their menus. A sparkler was also attached to be used for the couple’s first dance.

The moonlight and custom love sign shined on the dance-floor as the couple entered the reception and went straight into their first dance. It was dreamy, as all the guests swayed with sparklers and Shawna and Mike danced to “Lost Together” by Blue Rodeo. This song is loved by the couple and symbolizes their love and life together. Near the end of the song, Mike picked up Shawna and twirled her around and around which got guests teary eyed and made for a great shot!

Shawna and Mike were so gracious to have such a huge turnout for their destination wedding. Many of their family and friends were able to attend and danced the night away with them.

Shawna and Mike; you were an extreme pleasure to work with and an even bigger pleasure to photograph. I wish you all the very best in your new adventure as husband and wife.

xx – april

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VENDORS

CEREMONY + RECEPTION LOCATION

Marina Maroma

HOTEL

Azul Beach

OFFICIANT

Family Friend

WEDDING PLANNER

Meghan Jakumowski from Luxe

CAKE

Lomas

DECOR/RENTALS

Lomas

DIY PROJECTS

Star Fish tags to find tables

Sand dollar place setting with calligraphy

Minted Menus

Welcome Bags

Custom Sunglasses @ Deal Cardinal

cocktail napkins @ Napkin Niche

welcome bags – @ Poppy Crate

travel mugs – @ Factory21

Gold tags for star fish – @ Karli Boutique

DRESS

Paloma Blanca

SHOES

Jimmy Choo

BRIDAL PARTY GIFTS

Swarovski Crystal Heart necklaces, Harry Rosen ties and socks

STATIONERY

Paper + Poste and Minted

MUSIC

Lomas

NUMBER OF GUESTS

80

FAVOURITE DETAIL

Sand dollar hand written place settings

FAVOURITE MOMENT

First Dance with the sparklers

 

 

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I met Celine when I was 3 years old at our local Nursery School and since then we have always kept in touch. We were never “besties” but we had fond shared memories and always enjoyed catching up on one another’s lives when had our annual run-ins.

After I started traveling, I didn’t see Celine for maybe 6 years until I returned home and joined my gym spin class and she was the instructor! We laughed and chatted for a long time after she destroyed me on the bike! Since then, we saw each other regularly either in our new Toronto hood or at the gym.

Torsten, a very tall and handsome German man frequented Celine’s Monday night spins. Soon enough I learned that he was her other half. After months and months of Monday night spins and after workout chats, Torsten hired me to photograph his condo which was up for sale. From there, our friendships blossomed and soon enough I had the true pleasure of being asked to photograph their wedding day! I was so excited for Celine!!! After many years of us talking about life and relationships – she was getting hitched to both of our surprise! She never thought of herself as the marrying or “do it in sequence” type and here she was – planning her wedding! We find ourselves laughing at life’s surprises and embracing the change.

Celine did an excellent job of making a casual lunch wedding. Firstly, the couple decided that having the wedding on a Sunday would set the pretense that this event would not be a huge dinner or party. They looked all over the city for a venue and to their surprise fell in love with the newly renovated Holcim Waterfront Estate in Mississauga. It feels like a lakeside retreat but it is only minutes from the city and from where Celine grew up. It was perfect for an outdoor ceremony and cocktail hour. The couple added vintage touches around the grounds such as their welcome drink station. Wine barrels acted as table legs, holding “his” and “hers” flavoured lemonade. Crates were stacked alongside, showcasing photos of the couple. A gorgeous gold framed mirror finished off the whole look. Seating was also a lovely feature that sat around the pond and scattered in pretty groupings.

The ceremony was quite special as Celine and Torsten were merging two families and two cultures. Their friend was their officiant which made the ceremony that much more intimate. Other friends took turns doing readings and when Celine and Torsten went to sign their registry, they locked a bottle of champagne in a box. This box had two keys with each of their names on one. Each gave their key to a friend that they cherish and this friend would guard the key until Celine and Torsten would celebrate an anniversary.  These friends were not only the key keepers, but also represented guidance and support for each Celine and Torsten, when their marriage faces hardship. Another very sweet touch that was added was the flag ceremony. The couple had a Canadian and German flag sewn together. At the joining of their marriage, they each cut a side of the flag into a heart shape and met their scissors in the middle.

Celine, I am truly honoured that you chose me to be part of your small and intimate Sunday lunch wedding. The day had “YOU” written all over it; from the casual but elegant setting to the vintage details and unique ceremony procession. I am elated that you found the man who makes you happy, keeps you on your toes and keeps you real. Torsten, thank you for making my photos even more heart-felt with your crying spells! lol. You are a caring and charming man who has many friends that care deeply for you in return. That says a lot about your kind character.

I wish you both all the best in your future endeavours together. Whether it be more spontaneous travel weekends, new fitness goals or even a sweet mixed baby (I’m sorry I can’t help it Celine ;)) – I am excited to witness you doing it together.

xx – april

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VENDORS

CEREMONY + RECEPTION LOCATION

Holcim Waterfront Estate, Mississauga

WEDDING DAY COORDINATOR

Cheryl Eidt

OFFICIANT

Mike VanSlingerland

FURNITURE + PROP RENTAL

The Creative Occasion

 

 

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In just 4 months, Lilia and Andrew planned and executed their wedding at Steamwhistle in Toronto. A few months after getting engaged on Christmas morning 2014, the couple started looking for venues. They wanted the venue to be a reflection of them both – down to earth and casual, yet modern, elegant and romantic. They saw countless venues including countryside outdoor spots and wineries, but came across Steamwhistle as they had been there many times to sample beer before a Jay’s game. It also happened to be one of Andrew’s favourite beers so it seemed fitting as their first choice! When they had come to the decision they were quickly disappointed as the venue was fully booked for the next year on every Saturday! Since they had been together for 13 years, they didn’t want to wait a whole year before tying the knot. They had waited long enough! The Steamwhistle had one Friday opening on September 12th and so the couple put their name down to hold the spot. A week later, they realized that it was the same weekend that their friends were getting married and so disappointed, they took their names off the hold. 2 weeks later, the Steamwhistle called and told them that there was a cancellation for July 4th 2015! They looked at each-other and said “Is it possible to plan a wedding in 4 months?” And simultaneously they said “Of course!” The rest was history.

Andrew and Lilia had been to over 40 weddings in their time as a couple so they had a lot of inspiration from their family and friends to draw from. Lilia had a huge network of newly wed friends with recommended vendors and before she knew it, she had chosen them all based on referral and loved them! Lilia really speaks strongly of finding a personal connection with the vendors she chose. Once she was able to do that, she knew that she could trust in them to give her the result that she was looking for. Becky, from “Blush and Bloom” was the first vendor that made Lilia’s “heart melt”. She was able to articulate Lilia’s flower vision perfectly in real life. They were exactly what she had envisioned; whimsical, elegant and eclectic. Lilia had also asked for an arbour with greenery around it and some flowers on the corners, but when she saw the arbour on the day of the wedding, she was floored! The blooms were so beautiful and plentiful, sitting gorgeously along the entire side of the arch. It was above and beyond Lilia’s expectations.

Another detail that made Lilia awstruck was the stationery.  She had a vision in her mind of what she wanted, and with the help of a colleague of hers, she made those small details come to life from the personalized menus to the hashtag / candy bar tags to the invitations that were super unique. Another key factor in bringing the décor of the wedding together, was the decision to go with Farmhouse Chairs. They were well worth the extra investment and tied in the overall ambiance of the room.

With the help of wedding planner, Alexandra McNamara from Blush and Bowties, the day came together with the incredible vision that Lilia and Andrew had sought for. All in all, with a little help from your friends and putting trust in some key vendors, the day resulted in a gorgeous summer wedding in the city.

I really enjoyed getting to know you both and photographing your beautiful day. You can do whatever you put your mind to – and it can look as incredible as you make it!

Congrats to you both Lilia and Andrew!

xx- april

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VENDORS

RECEPTION LOCATION: Steamwhistle Brewing, Roundhouse 

CEREMONY LOCATION: Steamwhistle Brewing, Roundhouse patio 

OFFICIANT OR PRIEST: Alexa Gilmour – officiant

WEDDING PLANNER: Alex McNamarra from Blush & Bowties 

WEDDING STYLIST: Lilia!  Blush and Bowties executed day of

CAKE: The Wedding Cake Shoppe

CATERING: Food Dudes 

DRESS: Monique Lhuillier 

TUX: Andrew’s Formals –  Michael kors 

SHOES: Andrew’s Formals

ACCESSORIES: Kate Spade earrings and Kate Spade sparkly navy blue Shoes

FLOWERS: Blush & Bloom 

HOTEL: Delta Toronto – across from Steamwhistle

MUSIC: DJ Maren from Dialedn Dj

HAIR/MAKEUP: Hair – Dee Dahgher & makeup by Janine Holmes

FAVOURS: Soma chocolatier and a donation to the SPCA & Humane Society

BRIDAL PARTY ATTIRE: Monique Lhuillier 

BRIDAL PARTY GIFTS:

Guys – Villeroy & Bosch Scotch Glass, Amazeballs for Scotch, Floor Play Socks,  Rental Tuxes.

Girls – Pearl necklaces, Flowered Robes, Special tea cup, personalized bracelet, hair and makeup

INVITATIONS: Rena Bronstein Designs 

CHAIRS: Contemporary Furniture rental – Farmhouse chair

RENTALS: Exclusive Rentals

SECOND SHOOTER: Kate O’Connor

DIY:  Signing table (we had old vintage radios, clocks etc that we used to decorate the signing table)

NUMBER OF GUESTS:175

Your favourite detail:

“Our invitations which tied into our menus, candy bar and reserved signs to the lotto ticket under the napkin to win the centerpieces to the beautiful florals by Blush and Bloom, they were extraordinary, especially the gorgeous arbour, it blew us away. “

 Your favourite moment:

“We can’t say that there is just one favourite moment, the entire day was so unbelievably special, the best day of our lives!  From both of us spending time with our guys and girls during the day leading up to the ceremony, to the ceremony where we finally got to see eachother, to the most amazing, heartfelt and hilarious speeches from our family and friends to the architecturally beautiful space at the Steamwhistle to the incredible dance party that had everyone on the dance floor until after the lights came on at 2am.  Every moment of the entire day was memorable and will forever be in our hearts and mind. “

Your first dance song:

 “Warm Love by Van Morrison.  Andrew and I love Van Morrison, it was so hard to choose between Crazy Love and Into the Mystic, but we settled on Warm Love as we love the lyrics and love dancing to this song together.  We played the instrumental version of  Crazy Love when Andrew walked down the aisle. Lilia walked down the aisle and played Into the Mystic for one of our slow songs at the wedding! So we managed to include all of them into our day. “

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Caitlin and Nick felt like instant friends when I met them. They greeted me with huge smiles and we chatted about life and weddings. They have an elegant yet modest air about them,  making you feel as though you just met a couple of movie stars. They are clearly both gorgeous and equally as smart and it was a pure pleasure photographing their wedding day – especially at one of my favourite Toronto venues.

Toronto Hunt Club is nestled on the bluffs of the Toronto/Scarborough border. The scene is nothing like a standard Toronto view. It feels as though you are looking out into the wide open ocean. The Victorian mansion, is full of textures and warmth and the sun blasts beautiful sun rays through the giant windows at sunset.

The ceremony site is on the grounds, and allows for an outdoor wedding. It is simply a gorgeous yet simple set-up. The back-drop speaks for itself.

The bridal suite is especially my favourite, as the light is always soft and bright and the colours and mirrors a perfect back-drop. Not only is the bridal suite gorgeous, but Caitlin’s bridal party was full of blonde STUNNERS. I felt as though they were all casted for the cover of a Vanity Fair. The boys looked dapper too – in their well-fitted blue suits with blush pink ties! Overall, the wedding party was easy on the eyes which made my job pretty easy!

Caitlin and Nick put a lot of heart and soul into their wedding and crafted many DIY’s. You really got a personal taste of who they are as a couple with many photographs dotted around the mansion. One of my favourite details was their “guest book.” They decided to create a message in the bottle guest book where they had 5 bottles representing their 1st, 5th, 10th, 25th and 50th year anniversaries. Each guest was to write a special message and leave it in the bottle of their choice. It is a unique and surprising experience for the couple for many years to come.

I had a really fabulous day photographing your wedding, Caitlin and Nick. Your family and friends were a true pleasure and I am always appreciative of a couple that “gets” photography. It is a hard balance – trying to schedule the limited time you really have on your wedding day – did you talk to every guest? did you enjoy each-other? did you get the photographs you really wanted? did you eat? did you drink? did you dance? did you sit back and watch the event unfold as an observer and truly appreciate that everyone there was there for you? I have never been married, but the more I watch people do it, the more I wonder where to prioritize my time. I love good photography and awesome night shots like we took some time to take – but I also understand that it takes time away from the “experience” with your loved ones.

Thank you for being good sports and getting some of those extra shots! I think they were worth it!

All the best to you both in your new chapter of life as man and wife.

xx- april

I asked Caitlin to describe her wedding and this is what she said:

“The day was absolutely perfect; it was everything that I had hoped for and more. The bridesmaids, maid of honor (my sister), my mom and I arrived at 9 am to begin decorating and to get our hair and makeup done. Before the wedding day, I spent many late nights around our family dining room table working on arts and crafts with my mom and sister by my side. We wanted the style of the wedding to be very warm and personable; we decorated the Hunt Club with as many photos of the two of us as possible. The wedding day was so beautiful; the sun was shining and saying our vows over looking the bluffs could not have been more romantic. There were many special surprises throughout the day, including my “something old” and “something blue” gift that was given to me by my mother; it was a blue gemstone ring that my father had given to her when I was born. Also, to help calm each other’s nerves, Nick and I exchanged notes before the ceremony that were hand delivered by our best man and maid of honor. We wanted our wedding to be as romantic as possible and we decorated the Hunt Club in blush pinks, pearls, lace and roses. We had our first dance on the lawn over looking the lake and danced to “I Don’t Dance” by Lee Brice, which was performed live acoustically by our musicians. You could feel the love the entire day from our family and friends; everyone had waited for this day to come and were so excited to share our most special moment with us. The speeches made by our friends and family made us laugh and cry, it was so touching to hear some of the most special people in our lives share stories about us individually and as a couple. Our MC, even made a Hamilton Tiger Cat jersey for my dad that read “Mr. McAlpine” and gave him the number “one” because “he was my first love.” (Nick used to play for the Hamilton Tiger Cats).”

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credits

RECEPTION LOCATION: The Toronto Hunt Club

CEREMONY LOCATION: The Toronto Hunt Club

OFFICIANT OR PRIEST: Mathew Whaskey

CAKE: Bobbette and Belle

CATERING: The Toronto Hunt Club

DRESS: Kenneth Winston (purchased at Becker’s Bridal in Toronto)

TUX: Groom and Groomsmen suits were custom made by The Dirty Inc.

SHOES: Caitlin – Badgley Mischka, Nick and all Groomsmen – Steve Madden

ACCESSORIES: Groomsmen socks and ties – The Tie Bar

Caitlin’s Hair Piece – Woodbride Bridal shoe Shop,

Caitlin’s bracelet – Becker’s Bridal

FLOWERS: Cool, Green and Shady

MUSIC: Live Music – Nathan Smith and Deniz Lim-Sersan (played during the ceremony, cocktail hour and first dance) , DJ – Veriation Music

HAIR/MAKEUP: Hair – Cat Morals, Makeup – Hilary Jenset

FAVOURS: Mel’s Cupcakes and Cakes (Melissa Miras)

BRIDAL PARTY ATTIRE: Dessy Collection (bought at Jealous Bridesmaids in Toronto)

BRIDAL PARTY GIFTS: Silk Black Robes (used to get ready in, from Forever 21), also treated the girls to get their hair done

INVITATIONS: Empress Paper Crafts (also did the stationary for our seating chart, table numbers, hashtag sign, labels on bottles for guest book, etc.)

RENTALS: Linens – Around the Table

DIY: Card box (birdcage), Seating Chart (picture frames), Guest book (“Message in a Bottle”), picture frames

NUMBER OF GUESTS: 150

Your favourite detail: Sharing notes to each other before the ceremony to calm our nerves

Your favourite moment: Walking down the isle and making eye contact with Nick for the first time (finally!) …. As soon as it was over, all I wanted to do was walk down the isle over and over again!

Your first dance song: why? “I Don’t Dance” by Lee Bryce (the lyrics fit Nick and I perfectly)

 

 

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Jen and Dan’s wedding is imprinted in my mind. It was a DREAM. Not to mention the bride and groom had connectivity that made your heart melt. Every single detail about this wedding was thoughtfully planned and executed and all in 3 months! Yes people – it can be done! You do however need the right help and that couldn’t go any smoother than with wedding planner extraordinaire, Alexandra McNamara from Blush + Bowties. This relaxed elegance theme carried through the entire day and suited Jen and Dan quite perfectly.

Dan had worked in Africa for a safari company living in safari camp tents with Jen, so a wedding theme that encompassed both the outdoors and camp vibes suited the down-to-earth couple. Dan’s South African roots and love for safari and the outdoors meshed well with Jen’s simple, family oriented and laid-back personality. Luckily they found Sagewood Farms to host their unique celebration and allow guests to feel as though they could experience a huge part of Jen and Dan that was left in Africa.

Lesley Lebel is the owner and creator of Sagewood Farms. She has a gift for styling and collecting antiques and goodies from all around the world. Her eclectic vision and personal collection is what helped kick-start the vision for the wedding. Lesley’s collection ranges from vintage teacups and saucers, to vintage cutlery, old window panes, furniture and props. She created a honeymoon tent for the bride and groom and styled it to the nines with Canadiana decor that makes it feel like a cosy boutique cabin. This farm not only has Lesley’s creative input but it is set on acreage of land that will blow any photographers mind. Corn, mushroom and soy bean fields surround the farm and a treed tunnel stretches as far as the eye can see. Lesley also has a plethora of vintage vehicles to rent, a shaded ceremony space and outdoor bar that is connected to the barn. The sun sets over the fields and creates a magical orange glow for the dreamiest of photos to complete this vintage fairytale.

Jen and Dan emphasized that they wanted their guests to feel relaxed and special. They really wanted to express who they were as a couple and how they loved each other and promised to continue loving each other. The ceremony was dreamy and personal and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the field. An outdoor cocktail hour ensued, followed by a sunset entrance into the barn for dinner. Food was served and teary speeches began. The party started quickly and a surprise Hora was revealed to the couple from friends and family.

As night fell, Jen’s favourite band “Ride the Tiger” played the night away and people dispersed around the farm. Some sat quietly at the bon-fire roasting marshmallows, while others danced the night away and some took in the starry sky in a romantic moment. I would have to say that for barely knowing anyone – I felt like one of their guests and friends. This group of people were close and shared their love and energy with the people that surrounded them. I felt touched by the majesticness of the day and by the beautiful people these two love birds had connected to them in their lives. You can tell a lot about a person by their friends – and I feel certain that Jen and Dan will grow old in love together.

You can also view this wedding on one of my favourite wedding blogs : 100 Layer Cake.

xx – april

jen+dan1 jen+dan2 jen+dan3

VENDORS

Venue, Decor + Styling: Sagewood Farm, Port Perry, Ontario 
Bouquets & Boutonnieres: Blush + Bloom
Centerpieces: Blush & Bowties & Groom’s Mother Christine Achber
Hair & Makeup: Kim Timbol
Invitations: Paper & Poste
Cake: Le Dolci
Vintage Furniture & Décor: Style Me Vintage 
Bride’s Dress: Anais Anette ‘Beatrice’ from Vogue Sposa
Shoes: Cubanas
Earrings: Bride’s Friend’s from Swarovski
Wedding Rings: Matsu Jewellers
Groom’s Suit: Elliot Falovitch
Tie: Gotstyle
Cufflinks: Bride’s Dad
Maid of Honor’s Dress: BCBG

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