Post by – Liz Courtney
I met with Cristin and Shawn and in December of 2017 at a Starbucks. We spent a lot of time talking about their big day, what they wanted in terms of photography and about my business. I could immediately tell how in love they were and how excited they were for their big day. Cristin and I immediately connected. We parted ways that day and a couple weeks later I was officially their photographer. Over the next couple of months as they planned all the details of their big day, I spent my time getting excited to photograph their wedding day at the stunning Ruby Cora. May 19th dawned hot and muggy with a chance of rain. I walked into the Ruby Cora to find Cristin in the bridal suite excitedly getting ready with her ladies and Shawn hanging out with his guys in the equally gorgeous groom’s suite. Excitement was in the air. The entire day was smooth sailing. The groomsmen and bridesmaids were so much fun and were clearly excited to celebrate with Cristin and Shawn.
The ceremony came and went and not a drop of rain. Cristin’s mother walked her down the aisle as her father had passed away when Cristin was younger. Everyone there said that her dad kept the rain away so she could have the perfect wedding day. Shawn was so emotional and excited as he saw his bride walk down the aisle. Cristin and Shawn chose to do a first look and many people think that doing a first look will take away the emotions of seeing each other at the end of the aisle but I find that it isn’t usually the case. The moment you see your loved one at the altar is another feeling entirely and Shawn’s face when he saw Cristin said it all. He couldn’t wait to marry her! The two partook in Holy Communion and after some beautiful words by their officiant, Chad Rowland, the two exchanged rings and were officially husband and wife. The look on their faces said it all! The practically ran back up the aisle from excitement.
After a few fun and formal wedding party portraits, we took some time just for the two of them. I let them get close and sink in the moments that were quickly slipping away. Weddings do go very fast and that’s why I love couple time. This time allows you to be with your spouse and take it all in. The photos I took of these two are some of my favorites. They were so easy to work with and an absolutely gorgeous couple! During this time, it got a little crazy as the rain did threaten to start and during the reception it did sprinkle a little but it never poured. Mr. and Mrs. Jones were welcomed into their reception with laughter, clapping and so much joy. The two danced to Chris Stapleton’s Millionaire and after the cake cutting, the bouquet and garter toss and sweet toasts from Shawn’s best friend and Cristin’s sister, the party officially began. These guys can party. The dance floor was always packed and their music selection was on point. As the party wrapped up, everyone headed outside for their sparkler exit and let me tell you, this has to be my favorite sparkler exit. These two drove off from their wedding day in a Cadillac that Shawn has been working on restoring. It’s beautiful! What better way to leave one of the best days of your life then by a Cadillac!!
I can’t express how much fun and love was had on their big day. I asked Cristin to write a little bit about how she felt after her big day and this is what she had to say: “It was the most perfect day I could have ever imagined, my sweet Dad who is in heaven made sure his baby girl had the best day ever. Everyone who was a part of it made things so easy and carefree for me so I was able to soak in each moment without worry!”
Ceremony/Reception Venue: The Ruby Cora
Photographer: Liz Courtney Photography
Baker: Sweet Tooth Designer Cakes
Bridesmaids Dresses: Wedding Belles/Designer-Bill Levkoff
Wedding Dress: Wedding Belles/Designer-Maggie Soterro
I first met Kelsey via FaceTime. I love to meet my couples in person to talk about their wedding, but Kelsey and Joe live in Atlanta so that wasn’t going to be super convenient for them at all. Thank goodness for modern technology! Kelsey and I had the best conversation! We were able to talk about all the details that she and Joe had already planned for their Owen Farm wedding. For the details that they hadn’t decided on, we were able to talk about all their options and I was able to give a photographer’s opinion on what would photograph well. I really do love that part of my job! I remember one of the more important things that we talked about was the advantages of doing a first look and I’m so glad that they decided to go ahead and do a first look! We were able to capture so many special moments before the ceremony had even started.
I didn’t get to meet Joe until weeks later when Kelsey and Joe were in town visiting their families for the holidays. We met at Starbucks to finalize their timeline and make sure that they were going to have enough photography coverage to capture everything that they wanted. I got so excited just planning their timeline that I knew their wedding day was going to be so much fun. Kelsey and Joe are so funny and easy going and when we left Starbucks that day, they felt like friends instead of clients. If you spend even just a short amount of time with them, you will see that they are so perfect together.
The wedding took place at Owen Farm which is a gorgeous wedding venue with the whole package. Kelsey and her girls were able to get ready in the main house and the guys got ready in the adoarble Silo house near the reception location. It is a perfect setup to keep the bride and groom from accidentally seeing each other! Kelsey and I were able to go outside the main house to capture her getting in her dress, a few moments with just her girls, and the moment her dad got to see her in her wedding dress for the first time. First looks with dads are always a favorite of mine to capture! Kelsey’s dad reminds me so much of my own dad so when he got to see his baby girl in her wedding dress for the first time, I had to fight back tears of my own. Now that I have a baby girl of my own, I am soooooo much more teary-eyed while photographing weddings.
Once we were done with Kelsey’s first look with her dad, it was time for Joe to see his bride. They exchanged their gifts right before their first look and it was so sweet to witness. Both of them had written the same exact thing at the beginning to their letters to one another! They couldn’t help but laugh and I couldn’t help but think how perfect they are for one another. Joe’s reaction to Kelsey’s gift was so sweet and perfect. It seriously made me want to go back in time and redo the gift I gave my husband on our wedding day.
I’m so glad that my wonderful friend Bri was able to shoot alongside me that day so that we could capture both Kelsey and Joe’s faces during the first look. I love how intimate first looks can be and that couples get to have this sweet and private moment where they can hug and actually talk to one another. Joe’s face when he saw Kelsey for the first time was so perfect. You could see how much he loves her and you just know that he feels like the luckiest man in the world for getting to marry her. Their ceremony and reception were perfect and I think my favorite moments were Kelsey’s father daughter dance to Van Morrison’s Brown Eyed Girl (so so fun!!) and her dad’s toast to them. Mr. Kenneth’s toast was the perfect balance of funny, sweet, and meaningful!
OH! And I loved their Krispy Kreme donut bar instead of the traditional cake. I love me some Krispy Kreme donuts!!
Kelsey and Joe, thank you so much for choosing me to photograph your elegant country wedding! You guys were a joy to get to be with on your day and I hope that we will keep in touch so that I can celebrate all your big moments as your life grows together. Below are just a few (ok, maybe a lot!) of my favorite images from your wedding day and I hope that you love them as much as I do!
Each half of the heart that was sewn into the bottom of Kelsey’s dress was a piece from each of her two grandfather’s shirts.
Kelsey’s florals were stunning!
It’s always fun when little ones are part of the ceremony. I think there might have been two meltdowns but they eventually all made it down the aisle with a little help. They were so adorable!
I love that they rang the “wedding bell” right after the ceremony.
How gorgeous was Kelsey’s veil that her mother made?!
I’m so glad they humored me and snuck away before sunset to get a few more photos.
Their wedding hashtag was PERFECT!
It all started with a proposal in the rain, while stranded with car trouble in Gatlinburg! Lauren said ‘yes’ to Anthony and so on November 11, 2017, at The Tanglewood House here in Clarksville. The two love birds tied the knot! The walls of the popular wedding venue were filled with warmth and love as Lauren and Anthony’s family and friends gathered to witness them declare their love for each other in the afternoon on that crisp, cool, fall day. We, the husband and wife team of Wallflower Wedding Photography, were selected by the happy couple to have the honor and privilege of capturing their blissful day.
Lauren chose burgundy and navy blue as her colors, which were tastefully combined in the flower arrangements and the bridal party’s attire. The couple opted for a first look, which Lauren chose to have Anthony blindfolded at first, she then removed the blindfold, revealing herself in her beautiful gown for the first time. Kevin, their 5 year old son, was the best man and carried out his duties wonderfully, delivering a classic speech at dinner!
The cake was simple, yet elegant, and tasted delicious! The family was all smiles all day and were so welcoming to us, making our job more of a pleasure to capture their special day! Van was the DJ and MC for the day, doing a fantastic job of keeping things running smoothly and the dance floor hopping! The dancing started off with the traditional bride and groom, then the bride with her father and then in lieu of a groom and mother dance, Anthony chose to have a special dance with his son! The guestbook was a creative puzzle, in which all the guests were to sign a piece of the puzzle, which would later be assembled and framed as a keepsake.The entire family was so sweet and welcoming!
Congratulations you two, may your journey together be magical and wonderful!
Photography and story by Wallflower Wedding Photography
The 12th annual Wedding & Event Showcase was held at the Wilma Rudolph Event Center yesterday. Brides, along with their friends and family, filled the building’s sold out floor looking to meet the area’s top wedding and event professionals.
The Nicoletta’s Catering Stage had a full slate of events throughout the afternoon including the Clarksville Brides’ signature scavenger hunt. A game that qualifies five people for the Cake Dive.
The professional panel featuring planners from Every Detail Event Planning, It Takes 2 Event Planning, and PSR Events caught a lot of attention. Brides were able to have questions answered about budgets, guest lists, venue selection, and more.
Authentic Photos and Designs Styled Bridal Photoshoot at The Ruby Cora, Adams, TN. Curated and styled by lead photographer Christy Hunter for Authentic Photos and Designs. www.authenticphotosanddesigns.com
Flowers: A Rose Garden Florist, Ashland City www.arosegardenflorist.com
Models: Laurel Vaughn, Brian Vance (for AMAX Agency)
Venue: The Ruby Cora www.therubycora.com
HMUA: Brittany Pentecost (Tangles Salon in Springfield)
Dress: Glitz Bridal Nashville www.glitznashville.com
Tux: To The Nines (Joelton)
Did you know that a solar eclipse is coming to the area August 21st? Kind of hard not to, at this point! The area is excited to host many folks traveling for the best view of this event.
What does that have to do with weddings? Well not much except at two points you’ll get to see a diamond ring! Known as Bailey’s Beads.
As the moon passes the sun the rugged terrain of the moon allows lighting to pass through in some places and not in others. The diamond effect happens when only one “bead” is left to shine through set in a bright ring around the moon.
We can’t help but think of how awesome a proposal during this part of the eclipse would be! You have a couple of weeks to plan and pull this one off fellas!
Please be careful during this event and wear proper eye protection! Also, be sure to check out the many local viewing events like the one hosted by our friends at Burdoc Farms!
Alfred Angelo made waves this week when they suddenly and without notice closed their stores. The closure has left many brides and their wedding party scrambling to figure out what to do. While many questions for Alfred Angelo are still to be answered many brides will be looking for quick fixes.
In our area many of the local bridal boutiques have stepped up to offer help. We have put their offers together here for your reference. Please note that these offers are only for those impacted by the Alfred Angelo closures. You will need to provide your proof of purchase to receive these specials.
Wedding Belles (Clarksville) – 30% off Wedding Gowns and waived rush fees.
Special Occasions (Hopkinsville) – Waived rush fees.
Anne’s Bridal (Paducah) – No posted offers but they are in the middle of their summer sale with up to 50% off.
David’s Bridal (Nashville) – 30% off gowns and waived rush fee.
Glitz Bridal (Nashville) – No posted offers but they are running a summer sale currently.
Planning a wedding is stressful enough without something like this happening. We hope this list finds someone in need and we know these local professionals will glad help you out! Please let us know if we missed any sales or offers!
The inspiration from this shoot designed by j. photography was derived directly by Pantone’s color of the year and the rustic charm of The Belle Hollow, a beautiful Clarksville, TN venue. Stunning floral designs and accents pieces were provided by J. Botanica that beautifully complemented the outdoor brick fireplace, romantic tables, and archway that The Belle Hollow provided. The soft pinks paired so beautifully with the mixed greenery and lace to give the entire shoot such a romantic atmosphere. J. Botanica provided our bride, Abby, with three different bouquet options with one option being a non-traditional wreath. Wreaths are becoming more of a recent trend in the wedding industry and provide a unique element to any wedding.
Abby and Donavan DeGrie were the models for the inspiration shoot and are a real life married couple that live in the area. They just celebrated their first wedding anniversary so this is perfect timing to showcase this soft romantic wedding inspiration shoot that they got to be involved in. The beautiful gown that Abby is wearing combined soft lace tulle with delicate beading and was provided by Wedding Belles, a designer wedding gown boutique located in downtown Clarksville, TN. The wedding invitation suite by Sweet as Honey Studio was designed to harmonize well with the inspiration of the shoot by incorporating soft watercolors and a handwritten script. The delicious macaroon treats were provided by Thistle Sweets and give an exceptionally tasty option to wedding events that you do not typically see. Abby’s makeup was executed by Katelyn Hamaker and her romantic updo hairstyle was styled by Nicole Gordon.
If a soft and romantic wedding design is what you’re interested in, look no further. This shoot has so many romantic details that were captured by j. photography, a premier wedding photographer serving Clarksville, TN and Nashville, TN.
Our 11th Wedding & Event Showcase couldn’t have happened on a day with better weather for an afternoon in January. Attendance records were smashed as hundreds of brides, grooms, family, and friends took the floor of the Wilma Rudolph Event Center looking for wedding professionals.
The show featured lots of samples, mock-ups, demos, and advice from our local experts. We saw many of the latest fashions at our fashion show by Wedding Belles. Then capped the afternoon with our Cake Dive featuring a cake by Too Sweet Wedding cakes. Inside of the cake was a diamond pendant courtesy of McKenzie & Smiley Jewelers.
Thank you to our bridal show photographer Joan of Art Photography for capturing our day. Be sure to mark your calendar for the next Clarksville Brides Wedding & Events Showcase on January 21st, 2018.