Thank you to Shutter Sprite Photography for sharing this beautiful heartfelt intimate wedding.
Take a moment to read about this Elopement giveaway that will forever be more than just about a wedding celebration, yet a celebration of love and hope for this couple.
Shutter Sprite Photography says...
I just recently met Ariel and Nathan and did their engagement session. They won a Dream Elopement Giveaway provided by a team of more than 10 wedding vendors. This decision was based on Ariel's heartfelt submission, which explained her desire to get married much sooner than planned so that her father could walk her down the aisle. Ariel's father battled cancer in 2015 and had 18 inches of his colon removed. Then, in May of 2017, he was feeling ill again and the doctors diagnosed him again with colon cancer. However, this time they told him that he had only months to live. Ariel and Nathan have been engaged since just after the first surgery in 2015, but they had planned on finishing college before tying the knot. After, the news of her father's prognosis Ariel decided that she wanted to get married before the cancer made her dad too weak to walk her down the aisle or even worse.The only problem was that they did not have any money saved to get married right away. In October Ariel saw a post about an Elopement giveaway. She says that she and Nathan prayed about it and then felt that they should submit an entry to the contest. To their surprise and delight, they won.
On December 10th, my husband and I had the privilege of shooting Ariel and Nathan's Dream Elopement. It was a beautiful, intimate event at the Barn at Williams Manor. Ariel and Nathan chose to have the vendors design their day and let it be a surprise to them. They did tell us that her favorite color is purple and they like rustic with a little glam. Ariel wore her own dress that she had purchased sometime back, when Nathan initially proposed. All the other details were thoughtful designed with Ariel's style and contest entry essay in mind. Everything turned out perfect, from the first details of invitations created by Amor Paloma on handmade paper to the gorgeous floral design by Mott's Floral and the glamorous hair and makeup by Shannan Rebold, and down to the AHHHHH-mazing sunset for some Mr & Mrs shots, after the nuptials.
While the bride and groom were getting ready, the vendors were working hard to prepare the venue. Due to cold climate and Ariel's father's health, we chose to keep the ceremony and the reception within the barn, with all the doors closed. The dark wood farm tables dressed with lace, antique silver and loads of rich purple hued florals, paired with antique furniture, chandeliers and low lighting created an elegantly, intimate atmosphere for the reception .
The Ceremony was set on the opposite side of the barn. The focal point was a floral arbor created onsite for Ariel and Nathan's wedding. Ariel and Nathan had been very calm all day, especially for a couple who had planned on waiting another year and a half to get married. But plans changed after Ariel's dad's diagnosis in May. Then, they embraced that change, prayerfully entering our elopement giveaway contest just over a month ago. Now, here they were, sitting in separate rooms waiting with was quiet confidence until they would finally see each other (and they wedding) for the first time at 3 pm.
The ceremony was thoughtful and sweet. The groom cried during his vows. Then, during the reception the newlyweds acted like giddy school kids, laughing and teasing each other while cutting the cake. There was also lots of kissing and smiles.
During the parent dances there was a somber moment when Ariel danced with her dad. It was easy to see how weak he had become from the cancer and so the dance was an especially emotional moment for everyone.
After the reception, we took a few more shots of the bride and groom. We started these photos by allowing Ariel and Nathan to read love letters that they had written to each other before they said' "I do". Even, then, I witnessed the authenticity of their love and their faith.
They are such a beautiful couple and though I initially thought it would be nice to "give back" , this event has actually been such a blessing to me. It has been amazing watching everything unfold, seeing so many hard-working vendors go above and beyond because they just wanted to bless this couple.
Every time I think about the elopement, I think that it could only be this perfect by God's design. That thought humbles me, that I was part of His plan. I will always remember this as one of my most cherished experiences my photography career. It has been wonderful to be surrounded by so much selfless generousity from the vendors and also to witness the couple's unwaving faith and trust. My prayers will continue to go up for these families because I know the future looks difficult. I also know that God has already provided more than they had asked or imaginged as He brought this couple together with a Love that bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things. So I have hope. No matter what the future holds, God will hold them together with this Love.
Photographer: Shutter Sprite Photography
Officiant: I Now Thee Wed
Event Planner: Team Wedding
DJ: Stephen Goff Entertainment
Makeup Artist: Hair & Make-Up Artistry by Shannan Rebold
Accomodations: The Cabin Rental Store
Cake Designer: Custom confections by Amber
Design & Decor: Sisters Vintage Rentals
Event Venue: The Barn at Williams Manor
Equipment Rentals: Rothchild Event Rentals
Linens & Coverings: White Table
Tuxedo & Mens Attire: Prestige Tuxedo
Dress Store: Davids Bridal
Floral Designer: Mott's Floral Design
Happy Wedding Planning!