Where to start... dare I say that plan B was better than plan A? I guess I can't because we'll never know what awesomeness plan A had in store. But if it could have topped plan B, then it would have had to have been like the best wedding ever. I'll begin by saying how I've never been more prepared for a wedding day because Ashley kept me in the loop on every single change (traditional large venue wedding > relaxed lakeside micro wedding) and made sure I was constantly up to date. For me personally, as a photographer, that's invaluable because I can go into your day knowing exactly what is most important to you. That doesn't mean that I still didn't show up to Ashley's dad's house with my jaw on the ground. I shot this wedding with my husband and I think we were both struggling to not drool the whole time over how stunning this place was. McCully's...your hard work fixing this place up for Ashley and Matt was well worth it. I've only posted a handful of images from this day so far and I've already had double digit numbers asking me where the heck this wedding was and how do they book there.
I have an instagram message from Ashley from April that broke my heart. I was posting some info in my stories about what to expect for weddings this year since everything was just beginning to shut down. The frustration from having a long engagement and putting your heart and soul into a picture perfect day, being told it has a chance of not happening... and then hearing everyone say "it's about the marriage, not the wedding! it'll be okay!" is kind of maddening because it's discounting how you feel and making you think you're being pretentious about a minor snafu. Weddings are personal. It's not just a Christmas gift you were hoping to get when you were 4 and you'll just get over it. It's a memory you get to personally create. No, Ashley and Matt didn't get the day they were really wanting. But they took a very small amount of time and made one freakin fabulous switch that didn't skimp on anything that was important to them.
I'm going to be talking all about micro weddings here in my next few posts, so I'll skip the dos and don'ts of that and go straight to why this day was great: It was incredibly personal. It was decorated to the hilt. It was formal like a wedding with a relaxed backyard cookout feel. Guest experience was a priority. Every word said by anyone was heard by everyone. Food truck...F O O D T R U C K. So fun. Signature cocktails named after Ashley, Matt, and their dogs. Fab coordination that made sure everything flowed seamlessly. The list goes on forever. Take a peek at these and feel my pain at having to narrow down this beast to this amount of photos.
Coordination: Willow Street Weddings
Dresses: Grace Loves Lace
Floral: Flowers Plus Streator
Cake: Kelsey's Kakes
Groom: The Black Tux
Food: The Fat Shallot