"When I can’t find the words to speak, Just know you’re all I need"
The skies were gray. Rain was in the forecast. Samuel Cedars looked right out of a fall magazine. You know the pictures of a scene where there is a slight mist in the air? With leaves on the ground. Colors of red, yellow, orange, and brown in the trees. It was a type of beauty I don’t get to see there very often. But I LOVED it. Brett and Briona are some of the kindest people I’ve met. They are down to earth and bring such positive energy. When I arrived, Brett had just pulled up in his car and Briona was busy doing last minute party favors. Which, by the way, turned out so cute!! They had little jars of honey with their names, wedding date, and the phrase “Meant to Bee.” Wedding days are usually go, go, go and crazy. But this day felt relaxed. Everyone was joyful and excited as the two families came together as one.
I love to start all my wedding days off with details. Briona had her shoes, flowers, ring, and jeweled headband. Brett had his shoes, boutonniere, tie, and ring. I knew I had a little more time than usual. Since the tables were set up already, I decided to take a little extra care with pictures of the reception space. I got out my tripod and everything 😍. Buuuttt….a bit of a photographer fail. I did not realize that each beautiful table centerpiece still had the candles that were to be placed in the water vases sitting on top. Sooooo.. I have a bunch of beautiful reception photos that were not quite set up. 🤣 I might have laughed out loud telling Brett when I saw him actually going to put the candles in the water. #eforeffort
After details, I nudged Briona back to the getting ready room to finish her makeup and get into her gown. Her gown was stunning!!! The fabric was so flowy and had slits of sparkle lace mixed in. It fit her like a glove, however; she told me when it got altered that the sheer mesh at the top became extremely tight around her neck. Her mom and her had a plan to cut some of the mesh out once the gown was on. And that’s just what they did. 😂 It's a bit terrifying to take scissors to your wedding gown, but you can’t even tell!!! Good job you two!
Brett was wearing an ivory suit. Alex walked through the door to tell me Brett was ready. He had a big smile on his face saying how much he liked the “vanilla creme” color of the suit. I turned to Briona and told her the color Alex had designated the suit as. She smiled and said that Brett had said it was a bit “springtime” when he picked it up 😂😂😂. And that’s what we officially named Brett’s suit as: “springtime vanilla creme.” But jokes aside, I thought it looked very nice. I love the color and the small pop of light blue on the vest and tie.
The goal before the ceremony was to do a first look, a first look with Briona’s dad, take wedding party photos, and then hide everyone away just in time for the ceremony. Samuel Cedars is a mostly outdoor venue. In the event of rain, you can have a ceremony inside. Since there was an increasing chance of rain, they were holding off on setting up the chairs in the outdoor ceremony space. It was the perfect place for Brett and Briona’s first look. We chose a beautiful bush that started flaming red just this past week. A perfect backdrop for fall wedding photos. After, we hunted down Briona’s dad, hiding poor Briona behind a tree 😂 Sorry about that Briona. It took a bit longer to bring your dad over because we were on the struggle bus with his boutonniere. Eventually we were successful, it just took a few pins 😉.
I brought the wedding party out to the front field next to the parking lot. I was so excited about being able to take these photos in the field that I forgot how close to the ceremony we were and that people would be arriving. Cars began to increase in the background and we took the photos as fast as possible. It was worth it though!! During all these portraits, the decision had been made to officially have the ceremony outside!! It looked like rain was going to hold out just in time. Family members got to work decorating the arbor while staff started lining up the chairs. Back in the reception space, the cake had been delivered and it was a show stopper! A three tiered ivory cake that had a line of roses wound from the bottom to the top. It was Incredible. ❤️
Brett and Briona had a traditional ceremony. Her dad walked her down the aisle and gave her away to Brett. They exchanged vows and rings. Once the rings were exchanged, they sealed their marriage with their first kiss and were presented to their friends and family. After the ceremony, family pictures were completed at the altar. Just as we were finishing, a light mist started to come down. Little rain drops mixed in. We had the ceremony just in time. Once family photos were complete, we headed to the reception space. Doug, the officiant, got the marriage license prepared and two witnesses signed the document. Doug explained how they would need to mail the official copy back and placed the forms safely back inside the envelope. It was now time for the grand entrance. Brett and Briona were re-announced as they entered the reception space and went right into their first dance. They danced to “All I Need” by Foster. Next, a dance with Briona and her dad, followed by Brett and his mom. Dinner was officially served.
After dinner, Brett and Briona cut their cake. They carefully removed the top tier to be saved for later. As they cut into the middle tier, they carefully pulled out a perfectly cut slice of marble cake. It looked delicious. Oh my goodness!! I don’t say that about all cakes…but this one…WOW!! I think guests thought the exact same thing because people immediately lined up to get a piece themselves. Briona’s mom and another family member teamed up to divvy up the cake. They joked that they weren't professionals and the pieces might not have been perfect 😂 But I bet they still tasted delicious!! The cake cutting was followed by the anniversary dance and lots of mingling with guests. Brett and Briona went to each table to chat with friends and family as the night passed by. Nearing 8 p.m., a limo arrived to take Brett and Briona home. Guests lined up with sparklers to give them a big send off! The sparklers illuminated the drive way and Brett and Briona made their way through as guests cheered them on. They climbed into the limo and the door shut behind them. A perfect end to a perfect day. Brett and Briona, CONGRATULATIONS!!!
Brett + Briona
Venue: Samuel Cedars
Catering: Catering Creations
Officiant: Doug Thomas
Cake: Celebrations by Sonja
Flowers: Linda's Flowers
Suit: Men's Wearhouse
Dress: Norman's Bridal
Bride's Ring: Blue Nile
Groom's Ring: Custom Made
Bartending: Top Shelf
Photographer: Christina Zapata Photography