Category Archives: Destination Wedding
So, let me tell you a little about Cheryl and William’s wedding…. It was the perfect end to my summer weddings. I even got to visit somewhere I probably would have never thought of going to!
Their wedding was a gorgeous vineyard destination wedding!
It was a South Florida, Virginia, New Jersey, all kinds of coast kinda wedding. Cheryl and William were currently living in Charlottesville, VA where William was finishing up his medical PHD at the University of Virginia.
I actually drove up Thursday to do some scouting around the area, and I am so happy I did. Charlottesville, VA is a beautiful city. And the mountain towns surrounding it are literally breathtaking. I actually met William the day before at their apartment. He was really sweet and extremely helpful with gathering all the items that Cheryl wanted photographed. I knew Cheryl from working with her in South Florida. She had emailed me letting me know she was engaged and that she wanted me to shoot her wedding. As you can imagine, I was honored and so excited! When I shot with her editorially we just clicked. She is one of those people who I don’t think you can’t get along with. She is super easy going, and I couldn’t have been more honored to be with her on her wedding day.
The ceremony and venue site were all at the same location. The wedding took place in Crozet, VA. Ever heard of it? I hadn’t until I actually went. It’s a quaint, and beautiful mountain town. Among having gorgeous roads to wind in and out of, it had good food too! We actually visited a neighborhood pizza place twice. (Yes, it was that good). On Friday we actually shot our details and I was definitely excited to start photographing them once I saw how pretty everything truly was!
The invitations were almost like watercolor prints. They had gorgeous flowers on them that bordered the sides. What was cool about the venue was the elevation and your views. The estate was literally nestled in mountain views. The vineyard was filled with grapes ready to be pulled for wine. And they even had their own peach trees that were growing on the side of the home. Cheryl and Williams guest were greeted with outdoor furniture as well as a seating area for the actual ceremony. It was the perfect setting for a beautiful day. We worried about the weather leading up to the day. The day prior it rained like it was a hurricane. But luckily for all of us, as the day progressed on Saturday, so did the sun.
William was patiently waiting with his groomsmen when I arrived at the estate. He was very dapper and handsome in a classic navy suit that was lined with a modern twist. His bowtie was a blush pink color that definitely complimented the bridesmaids dresses that were chosen. He also incorporated gorgeous M cufflinks that represented his last name. William is one of 4. He has three other brothers and a little sister. And you can just tell that this group of siblings were definitely a handful! The boys were really sweet trying to get William ready, and relaxed for his big day. You could definitely feel the closeness within their families dynamic.
Cheryl’s dress was completely all in lace. A dress you could only believe was made for her. It was really classic, and light. Her accessories to embellish her outfit were nothing but classy. She had a gold jeweled clutch, tear drop earrings, and a studded hair pin. And to top it off, she wore Jewel shoes by Badgley Mischka. ( I’m a shoe girl, and I loved her shoes.. They were soooo pretty and truly the prefect accent to her dress).
All of the bridesmaids wore floral robes while they got their last minute touches for the day. Cheryl’s mom snuck into the room to help with putting on her dress, as the girls did a celebratory toast.
After Cheryl was all dressed, the girls gathered up to the balcony, and had a final toast before the day’s festivities! Their energy, and love for one another was so contagious, you could tell these gals have a really strong bond. It was really nice to be a part of such a beautiful sisterhood.
For gifts Cheryl gave out handkerchiefs, each one was delicately crafted to commemorate the day.
Her mom’s read, “I will always be your little girl”. When I met Cheryl’s mom earlier in the week, she welcomed me with a warm hug and embrace. I immediately fell in love with her calm demeanor and sweet smile. Her reaction was really cute as she read her handkerchief.
While we photographed all the girls individually, William’s mom made an appearance and of course I had to take advantage of Cheryl with her two moms.
Mrs. Munoz looked stunning in a navy flower embellished dress. It was really pretty in person, and if anything the pictures of the dress don’t do it justice. It had that right bit of sparkle that glistened in the sun. She also was given a handkerchief, which read, “thank you for raising the man of my dreams”.
Cheryl’s handkerchief was to celebrate the day, it had her name and Williams and their date of the wedding. Really pretty keepsake of the day.
While we waited on Cheryl’s dad to come up for his first look, I took some images of Cheryl’s details. Her wedding gown was exquisite. It fit her like a glove. She was nothing but confident, elegant, and gorgeous as she showed of the back and sides of her gown. I love photographing this girl! She literally was beaming and owned every minute of being a bride. I could have photographed her all day. <3
One of my favorite things of the day, was the first look between Cheryl and her dad.
I think the first look between a daughter and her dad are becoming my new favorite moment to capture. Traditionally neither party was able to see one another till the ceremony and even sometimes the dad was able to see his daughter right at the alter before he walked her. But, now new traditions have been made, and this is one, I truly love documenting. Her dad was a complete cutie pie with his reaction to seeing Cheryl in her dress. It was such a genuine surprise.
Of course he got a special momento as well. His read, “thank you for always walking by my side”. Which is definitely worth of an “AWE”.. I mean… ! I can’t say I didn’t have some tears rolling in at this point. Luckily, I had my camera in front of me, but definitely a sweet moment!
While Cheryl and William got prepared for their first look, I got to spend some time with these five beautiful ladies. We had four different styles of dress, and I can’t say I had a favorite. They were all gorgeous! Extremely stunning in a blush champagne combo. Each one, definitely flattered each girl’s beautiful shape. The girls accentuated their dress with a rose blush eculputus bouquet. This color trend has been popping up everywhere, and It’s truly the epitomy of feminity. It’s so dainty, and gorgeous. I truly think it’s one of those trends that will be here for a long time. Truly classic. These girls were troopers too! We walked a lot on the wedding day, and they were nothing but awesome! I loved my time with them, they were all so much fun and definitely made my time go by quickly!
Cheryl and Williams romance was actually sparked at a friend’s wedding. So, it was really sweet to hear how their love kinda came about full circle. What was an invitation to a friends wedding in Charleston, SC truly lead up to this moment of William seeing his future wife. I love the serendipitous quality of their love. I mean, talk about falling in love at first sight. From what I have been told, it was like their hearts locked, and all they saw that getaway weekend to Charleston, was one another. Kinda gives you faith that if it’s your time, love will find a way to bring you to your soul mate. And the fact that their friends were awesome, for causing this wonderful meeting!!!
Cheryl was really cute as she awaited William (Wills). She was a wee bit nervous and it was such an innocent moment between the two. You can tell William is completely inlove with Cheryl’s every move. I think he was a happy guy when he laid eyes on her in her dress. They shared a couple of moments together before we headed off to the ceremony site.
William headed to the ceremony site, and Cheryl followed into the bridal suite.
The best part of the day was about to start and as the guest settled in, so did our groom and his groomsmen. Cheryl’s niece’s and nephew were the ring bearer and flower girls. The officiant was actually Cheryl and Williams friend, who was the same friend that his wedding actually helped their paths cross. I thought this was really nice to add to the special feel of the day. And how cool it was that he could have such an influential part in the adjoining of two lives. There ceremony had some laughs, and some tears, and some giggles. And of course, a wonderful first kiss as husband and wife.
Because there was just a lot of pictures I fell in love with, to finish off the day, I leave you with a few of my favorites from the reception including a really sweet tribute to William’s dad who unfortunately had passed, but so awesome in showing he was there in spirit. They had the cutest MR + MRS. table toppers as well, I have never seen anything like them, and they were absolutely adorable. And you can’t have a reception without toast, and dancing! And a little bit of more couple portraits afterwards 🙂
-Cheryl and Wills, Thank you for having me!!! I can’t express how grateful and honored I was to share on your big day. Thank you for allowing me to document it, and for having me there as a friend. I wish you an eternity of love, and happiness, and growing together. –
[Pinehurst, NC Wedding]
Our second location on the road map to weddings was Pinehurst, NC.
I’m based in Wilmington and that has pretty much meant I am a destination wedding photographer. We are located in a very small town, and there is a lot of photographers in the area. So, I actually don’t really have work in Wilmington. I’ve been lucky enough to travel out of the area, which is my absolutely favorite thing about my work!
We left Wilmington Friday morning. It was our first time being in this area, and we weren’t disappointed at all! We were very excited about this Pinehurst,NC wedding!
If you haven’t been, Pinehurst is a golf town. I think it’s one of America’s holy grail of golf. It’s a cute quiet, clean area. The town itself holds lots of golf history and its mimicked to look like an old English Village. There is cobble stone on the roads and the streets are lined with Tudor styled homes. It’s gorgeous! Andrew is a golfing guy, and a golfing manager in Virginia beach and I think that was the perfect location for his interest and providing a beautiful landscape for Ashley.
Ashley had opted for me to shoot her details the day before. And let me tell you how awesome is this! Not only do I get to get a sneak peek of her goodies, and I get to open up some time on the day of, so it’s always a plus.
Ashley’s dress was lined with crystals, and really delicate straps. She wore her something blue around her finger and had those most cute sandals that were tucked under neath her dress.
I also got to shoot Andrews details. Beautiful caramel shoes paired with a blue paisley tie. And you can’t forget the cutest accessory and detail, their handwritten vows. So sweet!
The day started off with Ashley getting ready for the big day with her bestest girlfriends. Her makeup, hair and getting into her dress was top secret! I love how she did multiple first looks. The first one was her girls, the second with her dad, and finally with Andrew. The girls gathered in the living area of the room while they waited for Ashley to come out. They took pics and Ashley’s dad finished getting dressed here too. He was leaving to go to our first look location for him and Ashley. The bride was just about ready to see her bridesmaids.
Ashley’s second look was with the first man in her life, her dad. Their relationship is so sweet to see. I love seeing these moments play out. You never know who will be the first to cry. And, I must say Dad held out as long as he could. Ashley twirled for her dad and you could tell her dad only still saw the little girl he had fallen in love with. There is just something undeniably contagious and beautiful about this kinda of love.
After her first look was done, we drove to the Arboretum of Pinehurst. Andrew was patiently waiting for his girl to do their first look. It was about 100degrees out and very humid, and this guy still looked as sharp as could be. Andrew looked nothing but handsome in his pale blue grey suit.
Andrew and Ashley are truly polar opposites. She’s vivacious, spunky, giggly, and her personality if you could turn into candy would be like gummi bears, and cotton candy. Andrew on the other hand, has the most peaceful and calming demeanor. He’s like that gentle breeze you receive on your cheek on summer nights. He’s smart, attentive, and even though he is quiet he’s very protective with Ashley. They are the perfect match to one another’s personalities.
As we were taking the couple portraits we also notice the rolling clouds coming in. The day called for thunderstorms, and we were definitely pushing the envelope.
Ashley and Andrew’s ceremony was soon approaching and all was left was to get it going! Ashley walked down the aisle with her dad. The Arborteum was the perfect backdrop to their ceremony. Gorgeous flowers were accenting the center alter and aisle.
As they went through the ceremony and exchanged their I do’s, mother nature couldn’t help but make an appearance as well. And she did it epicly…
And just like that, umbrellas were the main attraction as the storm rolled through the area. It was like a hurricane was coming through. Something I will never forget, and a story that will always be told for these two. Its kinda neat that they have this story to tell their kids, and possibly the story will continue throughout generations.
After the guest were gone, we sneaked our couple a way, and finished off our time at the Arboretum with some more photos of our couple. I took some more photos of Ashley alone, how could you not, right? She was was gorgeous!!! Her bouquet, and the dress on her, and her beautiful smile. Absolute perfection!
The reception was at the Fair Barn. I have never been to a barn venue that was decorated so beautiful. Drapes lined the walls, flowers were everywhere and we even had a chandailler that was above our dance floor. The guest were treated to a southern dinner paired with sweet tea of course!
One really cool detail, that I loved was the coffee bar. They had Duck Donuts accented their wedding cake. There was a variety of flavors ranging from maple bacon to sprinkles. We definitely drooled over this selection while we were photographing it. Don’t they look tasty!!
The couple entered into their first dance, had some wonderful speeches from Ashley’s dad, her sister, and Andrews best friend.. We had a cake fight, some dancing and finally the night was finished with a bubble send off from their closest family and friends.
Location: Pinehurst, NC
Wedding Planner – Jenn DiTuro, Vision Events
Ceremony Venue – The Village Arboretum
Reception Venue – The Fair Barn
Catering – Elliott’s
Officiant – Scott Betts
DJ – McSound Productions
Photographer – Paula Andrea Photography
Videographer – Happy Tears Video -Armin
Florist – Hollyfield Designs
Cake – Helen Andraos
Donuts – Duck Donuts
Rentals – Ward Productions + CE Rental
Hair – Meredith
Make-up – Emma Little + Helen Andraos
It was a gorgeous venue for a gorgeous end to a beautifully spectacular day. We even ended the night with bubbles as our send off!
Cheers to a gorgeous couple in and out, beautiful families that made us feel very welcomed, and a tremendous group of creatives who rocked this wedding. I worked with such genuinely nice people who I truly hope our paths cross again. All these elements made for a wonderful wedding 🙂
When photographing a wedding the amount of detail that is given to a brides attire is extremely important. But with that said, we can’t forget about the groom that is standing next her. His outfit can completely ruin the mood or style of the wedding day.
Whether it’s traditional, modern, contemporary, or even a mix of both, the outfits do matter.
When choosing his attire, take into account what kind of ceremony you are having, if you are more of the traditional style and are having something more elegant and black attire; you might want to consider something in the darker pallets. A tuxedo is a very formal and traditional choice. Take for example, this tuxedo that was worn at a Florence, Italy garden and ballroom wedding at the Four Seasons Firenze. Solomon our groom below, definitely played the traditional very sophisticated choice of wearing a black tuxedo from Duchamp London. This was a great compliment with his Gucci shoes. His wife to be so happened to be a designer and she added a nice little bit of flare to this traditional look with a colorful ombre tie from The House of Perna (his wife’s company).
Sticking to a traditional look can also mean you stick to a nice tailor suit. The suit can be navy, black, or even something a little bit in between. This look really is just about keeping it simple with a white shirt with a bowtie or a tie. I personally love when the groom will layer his look with a vest. Sascha was able to pull off a very traditional look and keep it casual during the reception by removing his jacket. He also didn’t match his groomsmen which is also okay to do. I love that the groomsmen kinda follow the same style of dressing but leaving it different for the groom to stand out. I mean, it is his special day to. He should be able to kinda stand out as well!
If you are having an outdoor wedding and want to keep it more casual; than maybe explore a different color palette all together. Try not to let your environment dictate what you wear, but uses those tones as compliments to your attire. A beach wedding colors are usually muted, and sometimes even brighter than normal ballroom or garden weddings. You can either have khaki tones or very blue-green hues that sometimes surface during these type of ceremonies. I love when the groom takes a small piece from the beach location and just makes it his own. Below are a few of my favorites; and some nice alternatives to the traditional and even modern attire.
And when all fails, and you already have your own uniform, why not wear it.. A man in a uniform has always been a hit. Definitely capitalize on it if your groom is a man in service. Its a great way to show your respect to what he does for a living, and also nothing beats some dress blues at a wedding..
And after all is said and done, its the small moments that matter really.. If your groom can feel comfortable, than you’ll have the best memories captured, because after all that’s what it’s all about 🙂