I’m doing something radical y’all… blogging just a DAY after delivery! You heard me right, these are just a sample of our freshest gallery. I figure if I don’t do it now, who knows if I ever will. There is a pile of 100+ weddings I’ve meant to blog. But this particular and very recent day filled us up with so much excitement and momentum that I just have to share!
When Mer got in touch with me, we were wrapping up a lot of editing and packing to go home to Louisiana. I got a very sweet sneaky message from her asking if we were available to shoot “an event” in Louisville just before NYE. She’s getting her PhD at Penn State so I was immediately curious as to what this could be for. I also knew that she and a group of our mutual friends had planned their yearly reunion in Kentucky this year. The final piece of the puzzle came in when I remembered how happily in love she is with a handsome guy she had been steadily dating. I had an idea, but I probed her anyway with some questions and she quickly let us in on the fact that they were eloping while visiting home in Louisville. We knew that we had to come back to KY for a wedding on NYE, so it was very plausible that we could document their day.
And y’all, WE ARE SO GLAD we came up a day early for this special experience. It was exactly the kind of day I would have dreamed for us if we had gone this route. At first, they had planned to wed at the local courthouse. However, the day before, they learned that the courthouse was going to be closed. She filled me in and I, of course, GOT REAL EXCITED about the possibilities. I reminded her that back in the day, many weddings were planned quickly, held in the front room of the bride’s home, and celebrated simply with food and drink. Ultimately, that meant we could sign the darn license anywhere and take some epic photos after. By that evening, that was essentially the plan.
We showed up that day to warm greetings and hugs. Her family home was still sweetly decorated with lights and garland from Christmas. I found Meredith upstairs dressed in this gorgeous throwback blue velvet winter dress and a heirloom fur cap. Her bouquet was handmade by a friend’s mother and she rocked these moto-inspired white leather booties. Benjamin was downstairs with Ganer in a stunner of a suit, chatting with his best friend and having his boutonnière pinned by his mom. Everything happened so incredibly quickly and we just fired off the cameras trying to catch it all.
Before we knew it, Meredith was coming down the stairs and the ceremony was taking place in front of the family room fireplace. To everyone’s surprise, the officiant (and friend), with only a day’s prep, had prepared much more than the minimum and performed a beautiful speech. There was even a poetry reading, y’all. They said “I do”, kissed, and hugged everyone in the room. There was champagne, bourbon, and beer going around to keep the warm vibes going. After the newlyweds signed their license, the entire crew piled into cars to go to Monnik Beer Co. for lunch and continued celebration. There, we ate a mostly vegetarian/vegan lunch and took advantage of the stunning surroundings for portraits. Before heading back to the house, we stopped by Day’s coffee, where the couple had their very first date (thanks Tinder!). The day ended with a bonfire, cake cutting, and more celebratory drinks. We were treated so warmly. Everyone embraced us first as friends and then as documentarians. I took a slice of cake home that was covered in Andes chocolates.
This is the kind of day that reminds me why I believe in intimate weddings so much. When you only have 2 weeks to plan something, you have to make decisions both practically and based on who you are, here and now. You pull the resources and people together that are available and eager at any moment. I consistently find that couples are surprised by just how much gets done. Someone prepares a beautiful speech. Someone else brings a cake. Mom finds heirloom hankies and garters to remind you that this day is just as much about your family’s history as it is about your family’s future. These kinds of days allow you to feel delightfully surprised and never, ever disappointed.
Ben and Mer- you two have an electric connection and we feel so privileged to have had this time with you two. Moreover, your friends and family are the absolute best. Thank you for having us up to capture this impromptu, magical experience.