What an amazing adventure wedding Scott and I shared with Serena and Dave! We first met last fall when I was asked to capture their engagement session; we totally hit it off and things quickly progressed from there before we knew it we were talking about their upcoming June wedding in the Tennessee mountains; I was just filled with wanderlust and excitement for them! The adventurous soul in me glowed with delight as we talked about their details, adorable little bed and breakfast tucked away and off gravel roads, and the intimate gathering they were planning with just very close family. This was a special wedding as Scott was assisting and shooting with me, which made the adventure and trip that much more special to me.
Our trip started off a couple of days before their wedding so we had ample time to get down there (Scott, Casanova, and I totally drove- you get to see way more of this beautiful country and make a real adventure out of it); and we met everyone at the hotel the night before the wedding. I have to tell you- it was lovely to have dinner, a drink, and chat with Serena and Dave’s parents, siblings, and grandparents. They really made us feel like we were part of the family, and to be honest, we felt like we fit right in. We all talked for hours about adventure trips we’ve all had, shared many photos of our fur babies, and of course, the excitement around Dave and Serena’s beautifully planned day. We all departed early enough for showers and a good nights rest so we were fully charged and ready for their wedding day.
I was so full of giggles and excitement as we drove down twisty, single lane, gravel roads to Butterfly Hollow; (if you know us personally you know Scott and I have a thing with dirt roads; we feel they are filled with adventure). We reached a handmade, painted sign marking the mile long driveway to the property and our morning had started…eeeek! I met with Serena and Dave in their cabin to start with their carefully selected details as Dave and Serena relaxed. As always, we had so much fun as we played with their details… and there may or may not be like 15 different ring shots included in their final edit. Honestly, it was such a relaxed morning, we really got to play with creativity. My favorite detail would have to be Serena’s gift to Dave: a custom, handmade Damascus steel butchers knife. I may have gotten a little carried away with it… but it is so beautiful!!!
After a relaxing morning and some pampering, Dave finished his final details and Serena slipped into her gown before sharing a first look. These two share a fun, silly, and relaxed dynamic and it really shines in their images. When Serena turned Dave around, he took me so seriously (which was awesome, by the way) when I said, “Don’t open your eyes until I tell you to,” that he didn’t opened them at first- and I never noticed until he asked if he could open them! (So, I have to laugh at myself for not noticing this during their first look; but, in my defense, I was looking though a tiny viewfinder on my DSLR and couldn’t tell from my angle his eyes were closed!) After he was given permission to gaze upon his beautiful bride, they shared some cute jokes; meanwhile, a butterfly came and landed on Serena’s veil- which was so fitting for the day. We then went into a bridal session, and family began to arrive for their ceremony.
Family were seated as Serena, Dave, and their adorable flower girl (niece, Ellen), prepared for their ceremony. I absolutely adore kiddos and their unpredictable personalities; she stared off with a leisurely walk, then broke into a robust sprint, before coming to a pensive stop with flower basket in hand… seriously adorable. After careful consideration of what was happening and judging the small crow, she eventually very thoughtfully handed out dried flower bouquet keepsakes to each guest before finding her seat. Dave and Serena made their way to their family and shared a loving and warm ceremony. The light was absolutely amazing; it danced between the trees and kissed their silhouettes as they made their promises and sealed it with a kiss- I could have shot for hours, but we had other events on the agenda! We then went into family photos, where I have the most EXCITING news to share!!! Honestly, I’ve never had such an honor, but Serena had the idea to make their pregnancy announcement at the final planned family photo with everyone in it- and I had the honors to say it! Make sure you slow your scroll, you’ll see a series of family photos at the end and they are worth stopping for. We did some shout-out repeats like, “Congrats, Dave and Serena,” and “Happy Wedding Day,” before finally, “SERENA’S PREGNANT!!!” You’ll see some smiles, then the group subtly realize what I (and they) just said! It worked out perfectly and just the way we planned; what a truly special moment to share!
We then enjoyed a loving dinner (the best BBQ we’ve had- props to Tennessee), and that light just got magical again! It was golden hour, that last hour before sunset and Serena and Dave opted for one more mini-session before the sun set on their wedding day. Due to the valley we were in and the mountains, we didn’t get a spectacular sunset display, but we did get the most delicious golden light to play in! Honestly, the heat and humidity had subsided for the day, the light not as intense, and I feel some of their most beautiful photos came from their golden hour session. They then shared some cake before calling it an early night as guests headed out so they could really enjoy some alone time together. I can’t stop gushing over their wedding day enough; it was truly amazingly memorable and so very intimate; but filled with an abundance of love, some sarcasm, and lot of laughs! Thank you again Serena and Dave for asking us to share in such a special day! Warm wishes to you and your family- but I know we will see more of another; as Scott and I feel we made some true friends though this amazing journey. here are a few favorites that highlight tier day: