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The sun was shining with puffy clouds dotting the sky. Yellow flowers peeked out of the earth to welcome the sight. It was a perfect spring day for Brittany + Louie to marry at The Ridge.

I don’t like to play favorites, but Brittany and Louie are two of mine. They exude love in a tangible way through the subtleties in which they look and connect with each other. There was a nervous energy in the house as everyone prepared for the ceremony. However, Brittany and Louie quelled the excitement with a peacefulness that can only be expelled when you know you are about to marry your person.

A friend serenaded the crowd, and the bridal party processed. Their eyes met, and Louie’s glistened. Vows were exchanged. Tears were shed. Laughter erupted as they were pronounced.

After taking in the views, the clouds, the flowers, the drinks, the snacks, everyone made their way from the country to the city. The music swelled with 90s hits (even some Linkin Park), which kept the dance floor crowded. As the last sparkers fizzled, Brittany + Louie drove off in a vintage car, kissing and waving to their loved ones.

The team:

Photography:  MorningWild Photography
Second shooter:  Bailey Batten
Venue:  The Ridge + The Venue
Dress:  BHLDN
Flowers:  For The Love of Flowers
Hair and Makeup:  Lola Salon
DJ:  Sound Extreme

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Amelia has become a dear friend of mine since we moved to Asheville, and it was an incredible honor to be asked to photograph her and Nick’s wedding at her family farm. Every ounce of their wedding weekend was intentionally and thoughtfully planned, which made it all the more meaningful. 

After photographing at least a hundred weddings of her own, Amelia knew that she wanted the limited stress of an elopement but the celebration of a reception. They spent Friday with just their families, exchanging vows in the field that she grew up chasing lightning bugs and farm animals. A close friend crafted the wedding dress, making sure to include pieces of Amelia’s mother’s and grandmother’s gowns. As her grandmother laced up the buttons that were once on her dress, I saw a glisten in her eye. During the ceremony she spoke of how she was the only grandparent left to witness such a marvelous day, which left everyone in tears.

After promises were made, rings exchanged, flowers thrown, we hurried to a nearby dairy farm to catch the last bit of light. The cows were attracted to the joy and wouldn’t leave our side. Their curiosity left us giggling, especially as they licked Nick’s car.

Sherril’s Inn is like a second home to Amelia, so it seemed only appropriate to have their reception at the “big house.” On Saturday, family and friends from all over the country flew in to celebrate the newlyweds. A close friend baked over a dozen pies. Another designed speciality cocktails. Amelia harvested the honey from her beehives as a gift for their guests. Nick built the triangle arch that they stood under for their ceremony. Every piece of their day was beautifully crafted by someone they loved.

Sam, the sweetest dog you’ll ever meet, never left Amelia’s side during the festivities. He even imbibed a little of his own, sipping beer out of a cup that someone had left behind.

As the sun dipped below the mountains, the music swelled, the string lights brightened, and everyone danced until the stars lit up the sky.

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Not only was this a day to celebrate their elopement and union as a married couple, but it was also one of the last days they had together before Lu was deployed. The wind whipped through the barren trees, snatching Karen’s veil and  carrying it through the mountain air (thankfully, we were able to recover the veil). They enjoyed every last minute as the sky bathed in the sunset light with a chill that early spring leaves. 

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Bridget + Avery were my first wedding of 2018, and they set the bar pretty high. They had a lovely celebration planned for their friends and family at the Hawkesdene House in Andrews, NC, on St. Patrick’s day. Thankfully we avoided thunderstorms all day until the reception, when it just absolutely down poured. A few of my favorite moments:

// Bridget + Avery decided not to see each other until the ceremony. When she came around the corner, Avery just lost it. It was so sweet.

// The officiant said something similar to “cleaving, weaving, leaving,” during the ceremony, and Bridget started hilariously laughing. If you’ve watched Friends, you’ll know the reference.

// A significant feature at the Hawkesdene House is the mule ride up to the lookout. It is always quite an experience (i.e. you feel like you’re going to die on the way up). But, the view at the top is totally worth it.

// Avery went to pop the champagne for a photo, and the cork barely popped. He remarked, “I promise this is not a preview of what’s to come tonight,” and we all started laughing. It was hilarious.

// While we were wrapping up portraits, I told Bridget and Avery that they should take a minute alone to let everything soak in. We stepped back to give them space. She leaned into him, smiled, and they took in the view together. As we started to pack up to head back to the reception, Bridget turned to me and said “of all the vendors we worked with for our wedding, you were the only one that made sure today was more than a transaction. You cared and reminded us along the way that it was about a marriage and not just a wedding.” I tried hard not to lose it right there on the spot, but those words meant more than she could know.

Photography:  MorningWild Photography
Venue:  Hawkesdene House
Hair:  Rebekah McCann
Makeup: Bailey Upchurch
Florist:  Rambling Rose Florist
Dress: Theia // Ladies of Lineage
Second photographer: More Beatty (thanks so much, More!)

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They met at a party while attending Syracuse University. After graduation, their relationship took them to NYC, San Francisco, and all over the world. California has become a home base, and Palm Springs seemed like the perfect city to host their wedding celebration.

Their close friends and family spent the morning lounging by the pool, soaking up every ounce of that glorious Californian sun. Just before Merritt turned the corner to meet her groom, the reality of getting married hit her. Tears streamed down her face as she gleefully hugged him. We explored their rental property and the Ace Hotel & Swim Club Palm Springs, letting the soon-to-be newlyweds take in some time alone before the festivities.

Even though they had written their vows separately, they beautifully mirrored each other. Their words promised a life of adventure and companionship. Several friends teared up and later complimented the couple on their genuine vows.

Merritt and Cory share an infectious bolt of energy, and it seemed only appropriate that their decor would reflect that. The bright colors, neon signs, glow sticks, large balloon installation, and hand-painted tables entertained their guests. To celebrate Merritt’s Spanish heritage, guests enjoyed patatas braves, chorizo, churros, and other delicious delicacies. Some guests lounged on patio furniture, drinking in the warm desert air and specialty cocktails. Others crowded the dance floor, enjoying a game of limbo and the epic party.

Their wedding was also featured on 100 Layer Cake! Here is the link to the feature.

Photography: MorningWild Photography
Planning & Design: Ashley Smith Events
Venue: Ace Hotel & Swim Club Palm Springs
Flowers: Of The Flowers
Lounge Rentals: Witty Rentals
DJ: Dart Collective
Balloons: Zim Balloons
Bride’s Dress: Carolina Herrera ‘Mason’ from Jin Wang in San Francisco
Shoes: Stuart Weitzman
Groom’s Suit: Suitsupply
Shoes: Taft

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