Jasna Polana, Princeton, NJ
When Adrienne and I arrived at Jasna the weather was looking a bit 'iffy' for Brooke and Drew's big day. Luckily while they were both preparing for their first reveal the sun poked out from the clouds. It was pretty amazing timing because almost to the minute we finished shooting it started raining again. All the away to the church entrance to the church exit. But by the time we got back to Jasna it stopped again. Want to give a huge thank you to Brooke & Drew's bridal party for braving the master tub in the master suite. Check it out below. It also won a Fearless Photographers award.I wonder if it's the first time 13 people were all in it at once. Great people, great location, great party make for great images!!! Thank you guys for an amazing time.
Here is the team Brooke and Drew put together for their day:
Band- Lost In Paris
Hair- Nuvo Beauty Lounge
Make-Up- Nicck Townsend via Mack Stylist
Videographer- McKenzie Miller Films
Floral, Decor, Linens, Fabric Draping- Janet's Weddings and Parties
Save the Dates, Invitations, Day of Printed Materials- LoveLeigh Invitations
Reception Lighting- Fennelli Design
Here is their story:
How We Met:
I'm sure a lot of couples meet at work. Drew and I are no different, in that yes, we met at work. However, the circumstances around our meeting are probably different than most couples. I was the HR person that interviewed Drew when he came in for an interview (granted I was just the first interviewer, not the decision-maker or his future boss). Drew got hired for the job, and being new to the NYC area (he's originally from Philadelphia, and yes we're a Devils fan and a Flyers fan under one roof) would frequently ask me about places to go for happy hour, and would ask me if I wanted to go with him. We eventually started dating and were able to put our differences in sports teams aside, and 3.5 years later we were engaged.
Throughout the time we dated we had gone to Atlantic City several times. We always had a great time when we went. One particular time we won a bunch of money at roulette, stayed an extra night and spoiled ourselves with massages at the Water Club the next day. The Water Club has a gorgeous spa on the top level of the hotel with panoramic views of the ocean. One day Drew had asked me a few weeks in advance to go to Atlantic City for the weekend. At first I didn't think this was anything out of the ordinary. Then I asked him if he wanted me to make dinner reservations (the planner in me), he kept insisting he make the plans. So I knew something was up and I thought...maybe an engagement? The weekend comes around and we arrive on a Friday night. We both exhausted from the work week so we have some dinner and drinks, hit the casino for a little and go to bed. The next morning while Drew was in the shower, I made a point to snoop around to see if I could find a ring. I couldn't find one. Then being somewhat pouty, we go downstairs for brunch and Drew mentions he'd been trying to get us massage appointments but that it was short notice so we'd have to go up to the spa and talk to them in person. Already a few Bloody Mary's into my day I keep questioning why this can't just be done over the phone. We get up to the spa and it turns out there was no availability for a massage (or so I thought) and we go back down to the room. Before I know it Drew is down on one knee with the ring. I come to find out he wanted to propose in the spa by the big glass windows overlooking the ocean, but he was weirded out by the amount of people in robes sitting in the area that he planned on proposing. Drew had also invited our immediate family and close friends to AC for the weekend, so after we had dinner with just the two of us he took me to one of the bars in the hotel where our friends and family were waiting to party until the early hours of the morning.
We were married on September 13, 2014. Drew's parents were married in September and mine were married on the 13th of April. So we sort of combined their wedding dates to get our own. We had a traditional church wedding at the Church of the Sacred Heart in Trenton, NJ. Our reception was held at Jasna Polana in Princeton, NJ. It was so great to finally see how over a year of planning had come to life. We wanted our wedding to feel elegant but yet personal. There were napkins with fun facts about us, a pierogie station to pay tribute to my Polish heritage, and we had displayed photos of our parents and grand parents weddings in the cocktail hour space. It rained on our wedding day, but Jeff was still able to get great shots of us outdoors, we were even able to do our first look outside. To those on the fence about a first look- DO IT! It takes any nerves away, and you still get those butterflies when you walk down the aisle. Because we did the first look we were also able to get in extra shooting time with just us and Jeff. Also a word to any future Tisman couples out there-if Jeff suggests something that may seem a little wild...GO FOR IT! I cannot tell you how many compliments we've received on our photos, especially the one of all 13 of us in the bathtub in the Jasna bridal suite. The day was everything we could've hoped for and so much more, we were so thankful to be surrounded by such wonderful people who traveled near and far (special shout out to my Matron of Honor who traveled from Florida two weeks after giving birth to her first child) to celebrate with us.
Brooke & Andrew
Brookes shoes with some old world charm.
Loved this little flower girl. So much personality.
Brooks brides maids reaction to Drew letter to Brooke.
Right when we got this image it started pouring!! We were able to get off about four shots before we were all running for cover.
One of my ALL TIME favorite bridal party images. This one also won a Fearless Photographers award.
Did I mention how great these two are? Love when my couples can have some fun on their wedding day.
Dad giving Brooke a kiss just before they walked up the aisle together.
Wooo Hoo!! In the back of the church as their bridal party was about to greet them.
The rain was pouring down as we left the church. But Drew the gentleman that he is held the umbrella for Brooke the entire time. ;)
Loved the ceiling at Jasna.Cool way to incorporate it.
The beautiful entrance to the reception room.
Always time for a selfie.
Grand'ma dancin' the night away. :)
Here are my favorite images of my brides for 2014. This is my first time making a 'Best Of' the year post. There are 36 of the most amazing beautiful brides on the planet. If I do say so myself. I love how each one really has their own look. I'll be making a "Best of Couples" next.
The Park Savoy, Florham Park, NJ
Lindsey & Nick had a beautiful day in July. Weather was perfect. The day started at Lindsey's home with her and the girls getting ready. We then headed to the church for the ceremony. We stopped in downtown Flemington for some shots around town before heading over to The Park Savoy for a rocking evening.
Here is their story:
How We Met:
Lindsey and Nick met at Albany Medical Center when Lindsey was a fourth year medical student and Nick was an Orthopaedic Surgery intern. Two of Lindsey's friends were Nick's medical students on his MICU rotation. They arranged for Lindsey and Nick to meet at Graney's, a favorite Albany Med hangout!
Nick surprised Lindsey with a weekend trip to New York City on Friday, April 5th, 2013. As soon as they entered their room at the W Hotel, Nick popped the question, and Lindsey of course said yes! Nick had a fun-filled weekend planned, including seeing a Broadway show and arranging a surprise dinner with their families.
Lindsey and Nick exchanged vows on July 20th, 2014 at Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton, the church that Lindsey’s family has belonged to for many years. After searching various wedding venues throughout New Jersey, Lindsey fell in love with The Park Savoy Estate located in Florham Park, NJ. An elegant mansion nestled on beautiful grounds not too far from Lindsey’s hometown, The Park Savoy was the perfect setting for Lindsey and Nick’s wedding reception. The wedding day and entire weekend were absolutely perfect with gorgeous weather, delicious food and drinks, a fantastic band, and an unforgettable celebration with all of our closest family and friends!!
One of the snacks Lindsey & Nick gave out was popcorn. Loved how the wording worked out with the rings.
Photography is all about story telling. One of the things as photographers is we need to be observant about our surroundings to tell that story. It is of Lindsey getting ready at her mom's home she grew up in. The picture on the wall is her graduation photo. This plays with the fact that you don't see her face as she gets ready for another milestone in her life, her wedding day. It's funny when I walk into people's home's and wander around their homes they often ask 'Do you need anything?". I just say "no thank you. Just looking"
So if your a future bride and you see me wandering around your house now you know why. (Please inform your parents.)
Lindsey's dad was with her on this day also.
Loved the shadows and feeling of this image of Nick.
Mom was beaming as her and Lindsey walked up the aisle together.
Joey supplied the bubbles for the Lindsey & Nick.
West Mountain Inn, Arlington, Vermont
Dan & I headed up to beautiful Vermont for Elena & Johan's big day. It was perfect weather and an even more perfect setting amongst the green mountains. Elena & Johan along with their family and friends were such a pleasure to photograph. The whole day was so relaxed and just good energy. Exactly what you would think and expect from a Vermont wedding.
Here is their story:
How we met:
We met when we were young professionals working in Washington, DC. We both worked for think tanks where the young people from both organizations would always socialize together. As a result, we were friends for a long time before we began dating. Over time, we moved in together, adopted a cat together, weathered each other's graduate school experiences, and began planning for the future.
We decided together that we would get married, although Johan still had a proposal planned. He is from Sweden, and in December 2012 we traveled to Stockholm to begin a Christmas trip to visit his family and friends. The funny thing is that Johan was doing work in Africa the week before the trip, and so he didn't feel comfortable traveling so much with the ring. So Elena carried it with her to Sweden! He booked a beautiful hotel room right on the water in Stockholm. After his proposal, we met friends in the hotel lobby for some champagne, and then went out dancing all night long! The whole city was decorated so beautifully for Christmas -- it was wonderful.
There was no question that we would get married in Vermont. Elena's parents' vacation home is one of our favorite places, and the wedding was the perfect opportunity to bring everyone together in such a beautiful place. We were so pleased to find out that a lot of people followed our suggestions and went out hiking, kayaking, and swimming that weekend! So many of Johan's friends and family traveled from Sweden for the occasion, and so we really tried to incorporate some Swedish traditions into the event, including having two close friends as Toastmasters, Schnapps toasts, and other fun things. The officiant was our close friend that brought everyone to tears. The wedding weekend had perfect weather, with blue skies breaking over the mountains just after the ceremony. The people, the location, the flowers, the music: everything was perfect. We wish we could do it all over again!
Elena & Johan
Mom helping Elena put the finishing touches on.
In the next two images you'll see my army of photographers I travel with. This assures me of NEVER missing a shot. Now if I can only get them to put their phones down and use the cameras I taught them on... ;)
Dad's reveal seeing his beautiful daughter as a bride for the first time.
The next several images were all shot on the beautiful grounds of the Inn.
What a spot for a wedding!!
The reception was held in a restored barn.
Elena getting ready for a crazy night of dancing. :)
Their first dance which also included the parents.
Classic hora festivities.
I think Johan's dad had the best time of all. :)
There were lots of speeches of love through the night.
Oheka Castle, Huntington, NY
I can finally say I shot a Oheka wedding. I have been wanting to photograph here for a long time. I have seen so many incredible images from here. It was definitely on my list. Lucky for me Gillian and Steven chose me to capture their day. The forecast called for rain all day. But after a brief shower or two the sun came out and shined on their day. They had an incredible time with family and friends dancing the night away in celebration.
Here is their story:
How We Met:
Steve and I were introduced to each other through mutual friends but nothing romantic happened because I was already spoken for. Still, I couldn’t get that goofy guy with the contagious smile and laugh out of my head. Once my relationship ended, I decided to take a giant leap out of my comfort zone and send Steve my phone number. Needless to say, he sent me a text within minutes and we went on our first date a few days later! Our first date was perfect. We talked for hours about everything…..we talked so much I even forgot to go to the bathroom and wet my pants. We both left that night knowing we met someone special and 17 months later we got engaged.
Our engagement was perfect though it certainly didn’t go as Steve planned. I had made a dinner reservation so didn’t think Steve was planning a proposal. We were visiting family in New Jersey and heading back to our apartment in NYC. I was running late and Steve was panicking about missing our dinner reservation, which was odd since usually it’s the other way around. We had about 15 minutes until our reservation and I insisted I needed to change and walk Pumpernickel (our dog). Steve ended up walking Pumpernickel so I could get upstairs to change. Once in the apartment, I was convinced someone had broken in…..not because anything was missing but rather, it was cleaner than when I left. Apparently I thought robbers clean for you too. While I’m trying to figure out who broke into our apartment, Steve is in the elevator, pressing the button to every floor and trying to tie the ring box on Pumpernickel’s collar. The rest went something like this….our apartment door opens, Pumpernickel gives a shake, the ring falls off of him, I freak out about the robber, Steve’s on his hands and knees looking for the ring and before I can question what on earth he’s doing on the floor, he finds it and the rest is history. I later found out, Steve had gone to the apartment to tidy up and show his Dad the ring!
Our wedding day was the best day of our lives. We had it at Oheka Castle in Huntington, NY…a far cry from the destination wedding with a small group of people we always talked about but we wouldn’t change a thing about it. I was beyond calm and wasn’t feeling nervous at all leading up o the wedding. That was until, the weather was awful in the morning and I was in a tizzy about the ceremony that was supposed to be outside. I had a chat with Jeff, he told me a story about his brothers wedding and he said, it’s your wedding Gillian, if you want it to be outside, it should be outside. From that point on I was back to my calm, cool and collected self, I didn’t care about the weather, the ceremony was happening outside. If I didn’t care about getting wet, none of our guests should. Ironically just as we were about to start the sky cleared and it was the most beautiful day (we believe it was all the angels we have watching from above, especially Steve’s mom who could not be with us that day but we know was looking down on us). The wedding went just as we wanted it to and it was truly the happiest day of our lives. We felt so blessed to be surrounded by the people that mean the most to us and have their support.
Gillian & Steven
LOL!! Gillian getting sprayed with something. :)
I loved the next three images so much I decided to put them all there. The light and the design of the bridal suite was amazing.
Mom helping out.
Gillian opening Steve's gift and letter to her.
Dad lending a hand to Steve as he gets ready for the big day.
Love this one of Gillian.
The grand entrance at Oheka. Loved the light, the symmetry and the couple. :)
All the kids of the bridal party. And look at that. Only one was crying. :)
A little bribery never hurt anyone.
Of course the classic image from Oheka. If you get married here you will get this image.
The proud dad walking his beautiful bride up the aisle.
Uh, what's going on here?? Actually dad is trying to block the wind as they try to light the unity candle. :)