venue: Emily's family's home, Hollis, NH
reception flowers: The Garden Party Floral Boutique Milford, NH
bride's bouquet: Emily's father, The Mixed Border Nursery & Gardens
caterer: Aspirations and The Meat House
cake: Em's grandma
dress: Country Bridals Jaffrey NH (Belsoie by Jasmine)
officiant: Emily's brother Andrew
wedding bands: A & E Diamond and Gold Inc. Merrimack, NH
I met Emily more than a dozen years ago when I was a senior in high school, and Em was a freshman. It was an unlikely match, but when we met during rehearsals for a school play in which we were both participating, there was no looking back. Em & I were inseparable, and have made many, many memories together since. Not many people can say one of their best friends share the same name, but for us, it's only makes sense.
Back in February, this was the email I received from Emily:
I’m assuming the answer is yes, but do you already have weddings booked for July 19th and July 26th?
And my reply:
WHY?! DO YOU HAVE NEWS TO TELL ME? I'll be really mad if you're telling me over email that you are engaged!
(and actually, I am teaching at my Cape Cod workshop on the 19th, but am available on the 26th)
Nope, they weren't engaged. They decided to skip that step. Emily and Steve, therefore, started planning what would be a surprise wedding at an otherwise normal summer bbq on the one Saturday I had free this summer. Weeks before the big day, Emily let her mom in on her little secret to give her the chance to find a dress, and her backyard bbq turned into a larger catered wedding at her family's home with the ceremony at her family's nursery and garden. Even tho the guest list swelled to 100, the theme- casual- stayed true and it was a great day.
On to the pictures...
Em's beloved pugs were the ring bearers.
Em, forgive me for posting this, but gosh, this image cracks me up. Here is Emma (as I call her) sequestered in her mother's room to get dressed. Her almost mother-in-law is peeking in the door to remind her that she was running late, and Emma takes a big gulp of champagne.
Emily's brother Andrew, in the line of fire in the busy kitchen, quickly finises the ceremony. Yes, he officiated! He was ordained for the day online.
The ceremony was under an arbor in their family's nursery, The Mixed Border.
I love this glance Emma is giving Steve.
Her parents sang them a James Taylor song.
Andrew pronounces them husband & wife!
First moment alone as Mr and Mrs.
I love this warm, glowy light!
I brought the flowers and cake from my studio opening to Emma's wedding. And altho the pink & brown did not match her wildflower decor, it was still fun to dress up the dining room table inside the house.
The cake joined the other yummy treats outside in the tent.
The nursery gardens were a perfect backdrop to the reception tent.
Seeing as we were surrounded by flowers, it only made sense to photograph their wedding bands among them.
Crayons were dispersed on the tables to encourage drawing on the tablecloths. Loved this sweet sentiment.
Two little baby birds were spotted on the ground below their nest.
Steve got a little carried away feeding their grandmother's favorite carrot cake to Emily. This image makes me laugh, and then want to throw up a little. :)
Simple. Fun. Celebration.
Emma and Steve, we are so happy and proud of you both! Even tho your surprise wedding morphed into something a bit bigger, it was still very much a reflection of you both. I really enjoyed meeting many of your extended family and new friends, and photographing in the backyard I spent many of our childhood days! Love you guys!