Shannon and Connor get Hitched! 11/06/2021
Where to start with this epic day! Shannon and Connor came all the way to Florida from Iowa for their destination wedding. As a Florida native, I was excited to introduce them to all Florida has to offer! From our white sandy beaches, to our famous clear (gulf coast) waters, I knew this wedding was going to be something to remember. They began their day surrounded by close family and friends. The ceremony took place at the beachfront home of Shannons Aunt, located on Longboat Key. Her home was what dreams are made of! A wrap around balcony that allowed breathtaking views as far as the eye could see! I was in heaven. I even asked if I could move in. They chuckled, as if I had just made a cute joke. I wasn't kidding! Moving on... Shannons mother assisted her as she put on her gown, and her childhood best friend became super emotional when seeing her in it. It was a beautiful moment.
Once everyone was ready, Shannon decided to have a first look with her father as well as her husband to be. I love it when my couples decide to do first looks. Although I'm a sucker for the traditional practices of waiting till you walk down the aisle to see your new bride/groom, there's something special about sharing that intimate moment, before all of the hustle and bustle of the day begins. In my experience, couples tend to remember that moment a lot more vividly once everything is said and done. Both of these men were elated to see Shannon in all her gorgeousness.
The ceremony took place in the courtyard of her family's home. Layered with exotic flowers, and simple yet elegant decor, surrounded by family and friends, these two proclaimed their love and commitment to one another. And as we all know, I shed a few tears during the ceremony. What can I say?! I'm a sucker for love.
It's Party Time!
After the "I do's", we all headed over to the Zota Beach Resort for the cocktail hour and reception. This is perhaps one of the most beautiful venues I have ever had the pleasure of working in. The reception was right on the beach. And did I mention the staff? The reception was coordinated by wedding planners Swanky Soiree Events. From the champagne wall, to the black and gold decor, it was beautiful. The reception went off without a hitch and the organization from Swanky Soiree was a breath of fresh air. The hors d'oeuvres served during cocktail hour made me hungry. Bruschetta, fruit/cheese platters, and Beef Wellington bites were only a few of the (what seemed like) endless platters being passed around to guests as they mingled and enjoyed the pool side-open bar.
Once the bridal party was introduced and entered the reception space, the real party began. After dinner was served, the cake cutting, speeches, and dancing commenced. The couple decided to not have a first dance, and instead invited their family and friends to join in their celebration of their new life together.
Take a break to remember.
I usually ask my couples to take a quick break with me before the dancing commences. It's nice to just take a moment with just the two of you, and have some alone time. Well... kind of alone. I'm gonna be there with my camera. If I have the opportunity to get some sunset photos, I'm gonna take it! The weather on this particular day was a little finicky. It was deciding if it wanted to rain or not, and thankfully it didn't, but the clouds were making themselves known. And it made for some epic portraits.
Conclusion to an amazing day!
Once the sun went down, it was time for me to go. It was an amazing day, with amazing people. And I'm so happy that they chose me to capture one of the most important days of their life. I am incredibly lucky to be able to work with such amazing clients. Thank you, Shannon and Conner, for allowing me to join you on this epic journey. I wish you both a lifetime of love and happiness. Congratulations on your new life together. I can't wait to see what it brings you both.