Virginia Garden Wedding: Congratulations Jane and James!

August 12, 2013

Jane and James were married at Stone Manor, a charming Bed and Breakfast, in Loudoun County, Virginia.

simple DIY wedding invitation paper source

Stone Manor Bed Breakfast, Loudon County Virginia

Jane shares, “James and I really wanted to elope. I’d never fantasized about my ‘dream’ wedding (aside from coveting the custom M&M’s that a friend had at her wedding almost 10 years prior), and the stress of planning had gotten pretty overwhelming early on. But, we weren’t sure if we would really feel married unless we made our promises to each other in front of our community. I was especially wary of getting married without my sister, Ann. I had been her maid of honor and I knew I wanted her by my side when I got married. James and I looked around at different options near and far and started seeing packages where, oddly, you could elope, but still have a small number of guests. That seemed like a nice compromise. We kept finding packages with larger and larger numbers of guests until it was no longer an ‘elopement’, but an ‘intimate’ wedding with 30 guests. My sister was my maid of honor and her three children were all in our ceremony, too.”

Stone Manor Wedding, Loudon County, VA

Loudon County Wedding Photography, Virginia

The rooms were filled with wonderful antique treasures.

Cute pillow, antiques, wedding photography

Antique Loudon County Virginia Teacup

Flower girl with floral crown wedding

Guests received handmade lavender sachets. Jane shares, “There were so many projects for the wedding that James and I collaborated on – the monogram that we used throughout, the invitations and programs (that were also fans!) that we designed, printed, and assembled, the favors, the playlists. It was fun being crafty together and good practice working together as a team.”

Rustic Wedding favor lavender sachet

BHLDN bridesmaid dress wedding

Pink Anthropologie bridesmaid dress, wedding

The intimate ceremony took place in the garden in the early evening. It was performed by Matthew Hunt, a friend of James from their Peace Corps days.

There was some rain in the afternoon, but Jane says, “We were lucky and it was sunny and clear for the ceremony.”

Wedding Ceremony Virginia Photography

Beautiful wedding photography photo journalism

Wedding Photography Northern Virginia

Stone Manor Wedding, Virginia

Stone Manor Bed and Breakfast Wedding

Stone Manor

Jane and James met in 2005. The beginning of their love story had its twists and turns, and a very happy ending with a beautiful wedding. I had the pleasure of taking Jane and James’ engagement photos in Washington, D.C. in June.

After the ceremony everyone headed inside Stone Manor for a delicious dinner.

Stone Manor, Virginia


Bed and Breakfast wedding Virginia

After dinner, Jane changed into a beautiful party dress by BHLDN. So pretty!

BDHLN anthropologie wedding dress

James shares some of this favorite moments from the day, “I really liked our first dance – not too formal at all or even announced. We just went for it and had our own fun. It was basically the same with the cake cutting. Oh, and one word: mini-pies. After that it was nice to be able to wander around from table to table, catching up and just chatting with folks.”

Wedding reception pies cakes and tarts

James continues, “The s’mores-makin’ in the fire box on the back patio was also a really nice way to wrap up the evening; even after the kids had gone to bed. Turns out that s’mores go great with a nice tempranillo.”

“And that wasn’t the end of the celebration – we hopped a plane a couple of days later for Minnesota to party again with a corn feed, skeet shooting, volleyball, hayrides, and a bonfire.
When we started the planning for the wedding, we said that we wanted something fun, irreverent, simple, meaningful, laid-back, and elegant but rustic, and I think we really pulled off a wedding that fit that.”

Unique wedding ideas campfire roast smores

Congratulations Jane and James!

Check out more photos in the slideshow:

Special thanks to all the vendors:

Venue and Catering: Stone Manor Bed & Breakfast

Coordinator: Simplicity Events by Johanna

Florist: Buttercups Floral Design

Cake: Pastries by Randolph

Pies: Grassroots Gourmet

Invitations and programs: Paper Source and Jane and James

Ring bearer pillow: Made by the bride’s mother

Hair & Makeup: Christine Hunter from Makeup Artistry by Tracie

Rings: Jane’s wedding ring from Quest Jewelers

Bride’s Dress Designer /Shop:  Tiffany’s Bridal in Richmond, Bride’s Reception Dress: BHLDN

Veil: Made by the bride’s mother

Bride’s Shoes: Cole Haan, Jewelry: Swarovski

Bridesmaid Dress: Anthropologie

Groom’s Tie: J Crew

Photography: Jessica Schmitt Photography

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Jewish Orthodox Wedding in New Rochelle: Congratulations Rachel and David!

August 1, 2013

Rachel and David had a beautiful Jewish Orthodox wedding in New Rochelle.

Rustic purple wedding wildflowers

Jewish wedding photography New Rochelle, NY

Shades of purple wedding accents

New Rochelle wedding photography

New Rochelle Wedding Photography, NY

New Rochelle Wedding Photography, NY

The Tisch (Hebrew for table) is the first large ceremony of the day. The bride and groom each have a separate Tisch where they sit at a table with family and friends and sing, pray, sign various official forms, and make a siyum, a celebration of completion.

Jewish Wedding Tish Ceremony

After the Tisch, the bride is led into a room where she sits on a chair surrounded by loved ones and waits for the groom to enter for the celebration of the Bedeken.

Bedeken, which translates as “veiling,” is when the groom puts the veil over his bride before the ceremony. The custom is based upon a Biblical story in which Jacob, intending to marry Rachel, accidentally marries her older sister Leah, who wore a veil.

This moment is also really special because it is the first time the bride and groom see each other. Rachel shares, “David and I didn’t see each other for the week before the wedding so all the excitement leading up to the wedding culminated in this one moment where I sat surrounded by my mother, mother-in-law, sisters and grandmothers, and David was brought in by my father, his father and our grandfathers. All our friends surrounded us singing traditional Jewish wedding songs. It was an incredibly emotional moment.”

Bedeken Jewish Wedding Photography

Rachel and David both agreed their favorite part of the day was the Chuppah. Although it was raining, it made for a very memorable wedding ceremony.

David shares, “We had originally counted on the weather being clear and sunny, and so were obviously disappointed when it started raining. The circumstance was made funnier by my mom and Rachel’s grandmothers, who did a brief rendition of Singing in the Rain before proceeding to walk down. But we worked to capitalize on the inclement weather (since it would have taken over an hour to move the ceremony inside). All of our friends and family not only made the best of the situation, but really made it into something unique and fun and beautiful. We never would have counted on our friends applauding Rachel as she walked down the aisle in a white dress and poncho, or dancing with us while providing shelter with a cabana umbrella. We couldn’t have been happier.”

Jewish wedding

Jewish wedding

David continues, “The love, support and humor of our friends and family was what really made the ceremony beautiful, no matter the weather.”

Greentree Country Club wedding

Greentree Country Club wedding, New Rochelle

Greentree Country Club wedding, New Rochelle

The evening was full of joyful and exuberant dancing!

Jewish wedding photography NYC

Greentree Country Club, NY

Greentree Country Club, New Rochelle wedding

Congratulations Rachel and David!

Check out more photos in the slideshow:

Special thanks to the team:

Venue: Greentree Country Club
Florist: One of a Kind Flowers

Dress: Bridal Direct, 2000 Coney Island Ave, Brooklyn, NY
Shoes: Nina
Makeup: Estee
Hair: Esther Joseph
Groom’s Tux: Tommy Hilfiger
Band: Neshoma Orchestra
Caterer: Seasons
Invitations: Designed by a friend and printed by Village Invites

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Cambodian Wedding in NYC: Congratulations Sara and Eric!

July 25, 2013

Sara and Eric had a beautiful, colorful, traditional Cambodian wedding. The celebration began at the Hong Family home.

Cambodian Wedding Invitation

The Cambodian ceremonies started with the processional. Traditionally, the bride and her family wait inside their home as the groom and his friends and family travel towards the house bearing wrapped platters of gifts, usually fruits and Khmer desserts. Upon arrival, they pay respects to the bride’s parents and gifts are spread out across the room. The family discusses compatibility and the ancestors are asked for their blessing.

Cambodian Wedding Photography NYC

Cambodian Wedding Photography NYC

Cambodian Wedding Photography NYC

Cambodian Wedding Photography NYC

There is a blessing by the monks and then the hair cutting ceremony meant to prepare the bride and groom for their life as a married couple, their hair is symbolically cut, representing a fresh start to their new relationship together as husband and wife.

Hair Cutting Ceremony

Next is the chinese tea ceremony. Traditionally, after the wedding ceremony, the newlyweds serve tea and invite the groom’s elders to drink tea by addressing them by formal title. In return, the newlyweds receive lucky red envelopes (“lai see,” which means “lucky”) stuffed with money or jewelry.

Chinese Tea Ceremony

In the final and most memorable stage of the wedding, family members and friends tie the bride and groom’s left and right wrists with red blessing strings. The praises and well-wishes of happiness, good health, success, prosperity, and long-lasting love are acknowledged and witnessed by the loud sound of the gong and joyful cheer. The ceremony concludes with a shower of palm flowers thrown over the new couple.

Cambodian wedding ceremony

Wedding portraits were taken in Central Park at Cop Cot in Sara’s beautiful Chinese tea dress.

Cop Cot, Central Park, NYC

Chinese dress wedding photography

Sara and Eric met in the Peace Corps. She shares, “Eric was in the volunteer group leading a discussion about Special Education in Jordan and I was sleepily listening. After the discussion, he sat next to me and we chatted. We started texting each other and he told me that he thought my eyes were pretty when they were open, since I was falling asleep during his session.” Although they lived in different villages they stayed in touch and shared their first date at an internet cafe in Irbid, the only place they could find open during Ramadan. They took trips together throughout Jordan, then eventually to Jerusalem, Turkey, Thailand, and Cambodia. When they returned to the US, it was only 9 months before Sara moved to NY and they no longer had any distance between them.

Chinese dress wedding photography

Chinese dress wedding photography

Chinese dress wedding photography

Eric shares the proposal story, “A week before I was set to propose to Sara, I realized that I would be doing it on Friday the 13th. The night before, in all my subtlety, I asked: “Are we superstitious?” After getting a chuckle, a no, and a “Why do you ask?”, I proceeded to change the topic and plan for the day.

We spent the day at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and then enjoyed a picnic in Central Park. We found a nice spot, I took out a blanket and pretended to not know how to unfold it. After Sara graciously offered to do the unfolding, it gave me the chance to take out the ring. The joke is that whenever anyone asked how long we’ve dated, I would joke and always say 6 months–even after four years. I started my proposal with, “We’ve been dating for 4 years, 8 months and 18 days.” She knew right away what I was doing. She teared up, I opened the ring box, popped the question, and without any hesitation, she said yes!”

Central Park, Cop Cot, NYC Wedding

The reception took place at the Dae Dong Manor in Flushing.

Cambodian Wedding Flushing NY

Congratulations Sara and Eric!

For more photos, check out the slideshow:

Thanks to the team:

Venue: The Hong Family House & Dae Dong Manor
Monks: Khmer Buddhist Society
DJ: Denet Samreth
Invitations: VistaPrint
Hair and Makeup: The Bride
Bride’s Dress: Fine Chinese Clothing, David’s Bridal

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Sneak Peek Garden Wedding Styled Shoot and Thank You!

July 17, 2013

Amazing things happen when a group of talented people come together to share a vision.

Throughout the year I get to work with wonderful couples to help them carryout the vision for their wedding day. But, with a styled shoot the vision is ours–the coordinator’s, the florist’s, the team’s. Rarely do I get to be a part of such a collaborative effort. It makes me super excited and so honored to work with some of NYC finest wedding pros.

Yesterday I photographed a styled wedding shoot at the gorgeous garden-restaurant, Acqua Santa, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Designer and planner, Jove Meyer Events, created a style that combined the Italian garden with a fun hipster Brooklyn vibe. The Wild Ivy brought in florals with bursts of color and unique dramatic pieces including an arch of blooms and an ombre petal aisle.

Brooklyn Wedding Williamsburg Hipster Garden

This is just a sneak peek, but I am so, so, SO excited to share more of the amazing work from the whole team including, stationery by Fourteen-Forty, wedding cake by Sugar Flower Cake Shop, cake cups by Alana Jones-Mann, cinematography by Valerie Barnes, hair styling by Once Upon A Bride, make-up by Sally Duvall, and fashions from Brooklyn TailorsHushed CommotionCatbirdChromatic Gallerie, and Comfy Clothing. Also, a big thanks to our models, real couple, Lilian and Kayden. You guys are awesome!

You may be wondering, What is a styled shoot? Styled wedding shoots have become very popular as a way for professionals to showcase their work, try new and interesting things that they want to share with their clients, update their portfolio, get press, and network. The team comes together with the plan to trade their services and products for photos and press. This is not a real wedding, but we hope it give couples inspiration. It is a lot of hard work, but it is very rewarding and a lot of fun. The last styled shoot I did had a whimsical retro theme. Check it out here!

I’m looking forward to sharing many more photos from this garden shoot soon!

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Featured on Wedding Chicks: Blue and White Wedding

July 4, 2013

I am so excited to announce that my photographs from Caitlin and Timothy’s wedding at Bluemont Vineyard have been published on a blog. Check out the full post at Wedding Chicks!

Check out my original post of wedding photography at Bluemont Vineyard here.

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