Category Archives: United States

Engagement: Natalie & Susanna

From the couple:

How We Met
Natalie and Susanna met at the University of the Pacific after a Pep Band gig. Susanna was in charge of the instrument closet and was bringing Natalie’s roommate an instrument to borrow. For years Susanna thought she was carrying a tenor saxophone, and Natalie said it was a trombone. True to form, Natalie was right.

After a year of friendship, Natalie and Susanna started taking a music history course together on Romanticism. It was through that course and their camaraderie in their music fraternity that they began to fall in love. (It didn’t hurt that Susanna had to borrow Natalie’s textbook constantly either!)

At first it was a cute joke. Natalie soon become Susanna’s fake girlfriend because everything in the universe seemed to say they should be together. From their love of The Court Jester to sharing the same shoe size and a love of words and grammar, they seemed to be a perfect match.

Within a month of “fake dating” they realized that what they had was real, and with a bit of pushing from friends and some liquid courage they moved from “fake dating” to just dating.

The Proposal
Four years later, Susanna and Natalie knew that they both wanted to propose to each other, so they decided that one would go first, and the other would go right after. Like the planners they are, they decided they would go to University of the Pacific, where they first met, to propose. Conveniently, Susanna had a choir concert in Stockton the night of 9/24, so they went to Pacific after the concert. (Well, after they had a drink first so they weren’t as nervous…)

When they were “fake girlfriends,” Susanna would walk Natalie to her car after their Romanticism class. Susanna would even carry Natalie’s books for her while walking to her car! They went back to that classroom after 4 years of absence and started their walk. Most of what was said on the walk is now a blur, but the part Natalie remembers the most is when Susanna said, “When we were walking to your car 4 year ago, I had no idea that I was walking with my future wife.” She stopped walking, turned to Natalie and said, “Will you marry me?” And through much crying she said, “Yes! Of course!”

Then it was Natalie’s turn! She took Susanna on a walk to a beautiful part of campus called The Columns. It is a circle of Ionic columns, with circular benches all around. Natalie wanted to bring Susanna there because the architecture reminded her of their trip to Italy together, and how in love they felt there. She had always wanted to bring Susanna back to Rome to propose by the Pantheon, and the columns reminded her of their special place. She took out a card, and handed it to Susanna. The card talked about some of the themes from their Romanticism class, and how the music they listened to was circular in form, with no end, just like their relationship. At the end of the card, she wrote, “Will you marry me? Check yes or no!” Of course, she forgot to bring a pen! But Susanna had one and checked yes.

Photos courtesy of Bill Quinn Photography.

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Event Credits

Location: University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA engagementPhotography: Bill Quinn Photography
Also posted in California, Credits, Lesbian Engagement Shoot, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region | Tagged , , | 1 Response

Wedding: Mo & Stacey

From Amanda Photographic: Mo & Stacey are two of the most genuine people I’ve had the good fortune to meet since moving to Bend. We hit it off immediately over pints of cider and gushing about wedding plans, snowy adventures, and their dog Georgia. We started our photo-relationship with their engagement session at Edison Sno-Park just outside Bend, which contrasts so beautifully with their summer forest wedding at Horse Creek Lodge in McKenzie Bridge.

The wedding day started like any other… with a mountain bike ride. A dozen or so wedding guests joined them for a few “laps” around a forested trail system near the lodge while designated friends and family continued set up for the ceremony and reception later that afternoon. Both Mo and Stacey agreed that it was a great way to get some energy out while spending time with friends. 

They got ready together while guests began to filter in and enjoy the teahouse tipi, lawn games, photo-booth, and scenery. When it was time for the service to begin the guests made their way down a wooded path with photos of the brides on either side; they were greeted by a sage smudging before entering the clearing. Both Mo and Stacey were walked part way down the aisle by their parents and Georgia; after a family hug the parents found their seats at the front while Stacey & Mo high-fived their way down the aisle – their roomie, Alicia, played her guitar and sang for the processional. A close friend, Jenni, officiated the ceremony while radiating love and joy over them; another friend, John Paul, made their rings and passed them between guests for blessings. Thoughtful vows were exchanged that were serious with a pinch of humor followed by placing a ring on the other’s finger. Another friend, Beth, read an original poem that she wrote for their wedding that left everyone who wasn’t already crying in tears. This was my FAVORITE part! 

***

I asked Stacey & Mo what they thought about their special day. Here’s what they had to say:

What was your favorite part of the day?

Mo: The Ceremony. Stacey doing 15 push-ups in a wedding dress. (It totally happened!)

Stacey: The ceremony—looking out at all the smiles and the teary faces of our most favorite people….and sharing the most pivotal experience of my life with all of them. All of the hugs!

What are you most looking forward to in married life?

Mo: More adventures!

Stacey: Not planning another wedding. (Lol!)

What advice do you have for others?

Mo: Make lists, ask for help, invite people you want to build community with.

Stacey: Make lists and make more lists, Smaller is better—invite those closest to you, and those that you want to pull even tighter into your community. Delegate tasks…don’t do everything yourself. Ask for help—friends are resourceful and are always happy to help!

***

Soapbox: In some of our initial emails it was brought to my attention that planning a wedding and attempting to hire vendors was a bit of a daunting task. Each time Mo would email a potential vendor she would have to preface it with the fact that she and Stacey are a same-sex couple hoping to work with them. Fortunately there are sites like A Bicycle Built For Two, which is where they found me. It hadn’t occurred to me (privilege) that one aspect of wedding planning/vendor hiring that could be particularly stressful for queer couples is coming-out over and over and over again to strangers via email. Is this person LGBT-friendly? Affirming? In our current climate, being part of the LGBT community is hard enough. Planning a wedding is hard enough. Doing both probably feels impossible sometimes. …which to me is complete crap! Nobody should feel sadness, fear, pain, or loss because of who they love. If you are fortunate enough to love and be loved by another human being hold on to it with everything you have…and give a big middle finger to anyone who tries to take that away from you. Mo & Stacey—I adore you both, your love for adventure, your fierce commitment to your community, and the work you both do. Thank you for letting me celebrate you!!!

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Event Credits

Catering: El SanchoLocation: Horse Creek Lodge, McKenzie Bridge, OregonMusic: Cascade CrescendoOther: Rings: John Paul DesignsPhotography: Amanda PhotographicVenue: Horse Creek Lodge
Also posted in Caterer, Credits, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Music, Oregon, Other, Pants + Dress, photographer, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Rustic, Style, Venue | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Engagement: Link & Lupe

From Erin, Link and Lupe’s photographer: Not too long ago, I had the great pleasure of meeting Link and Lupe for the first time. Referred by a mutual friend, they contacted me about photographing their engagement session, and intimate wedding to be held in Boston. Link and Lupe were planning to get married in Boston prior to their move to Massachusetts from California. So, after many emails back and forth, and a few phone calls, we had a plan! For their engagement session, we decided to meet up in Amherst, for coffee at Amherst Coffee HA!, because well, COFFEE!!! What followed was a stroll at the Emily Dickinson Museum, and then a gorgeous hike beside the river, and in the woods at The Robert Frost Trail.

The images captured during Link and Lupe’s engagement session, tell the story of the true, deep love that Link & Lupe share…you can see and feel their connection, their commitment to one another. From the gentle tenderness of a hand upon the skin, to that moment of lingering just before a kiss…it all says so much. This kind of deep love, this human connection is what I hope we are all able to find in this life. Thank you Link and Lupe!

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Event Credits

Location: Boston, MassachusettsPhotography: Erin Long Photography
Also posted in Credits, Lesbian Engagement Shoot, Massachusetts, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Rustic | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Wedding: Aleah & Hannah

From Hannah and Aleah: The inspiration and preparation for our wedding started in April of 2014, a few months before we would get engaged on a freezing cold evening in the woods behind Hannah’s house. That Spring, Hannah’s parents purchased a plot of land up the hill from her childhood home in Readfield, Maine that held the remnants of a dairy farm dating back to the 1800s. The field where we would hold our ceremony two years later was full of rubble: rusted plows, heavy hand-carved beams, and scraps of old milk receipts. Hannah’s father, Steve, with the vision of an eternal optimist, looked at that pile of debris and saw our wedding.

The theme of our ceremony and our day was, without a question, that of community. In the year that followed our engagement, our community—friends from our alma mater, Colby College, colleagues from Boston and New York, and the fine people of Readfield, Maine—threw on their work gloves and rallied behind the cause of building a wedding venue from the ground up. They came in droves to haul wood and sheet metal, de-nail boards, and move rocks to build stone walls.

On August 6th, we celebrated our wedding on the completely rehabilitated farm that so many of our guests had been a part of transforming. Everything about the day from the literal ground up was DIY; our families collectively built the birch tree chuppah and all of the tables, neighbors planted flowers, made centerpieces, strung lights, and two of our friends arranged and played cello and fiddle music for the processional. Aleah’s mother even made a beautiful quilt for the ceremony to replace the traditional Jewish prayer shawl, a tallit, under which the couple traditionally stands with their parents. Figuring out which traditions of Judaism, Aleah’s faith, were important to both of us was a part of planning our ceremony with our dear friend and officiant. Using the quilt in the ceremony, as well as stepping on a glass and listening to our friends read the seven Jewish wedding blessings, were some of the ways we combined Aleah’s faith with Hannah’s personal beliefs.

One of our favorite memories of the day was our “first family dance.” We chose to dance to the Talking Heads “This Must be the Place” with all of our immediate family members. While we started the dance with both our fathers, we were quickly joined on the dance floor by our mothers, brothers and sister. Throughout the dance we kept switching partners, and a highlight was watching our fathers dance together!

Our advice to future bride(s) is to find intentional time to talk about the why behind the wedding. Every time we sat down to talk about the nitty gritty details (napkin colors, number of tables, porta-potties!) we would start our conversation with “reasons.” These were little reminders not only of why we were getting married, but why we had fallen in love in the first place.

From Gretchen, Aleah and Hannah’s photographer: Looking through the photos to select images to submit I was struck by how much laughter and love I captured this day. I loved the way both Aleah and Hannah were able to incorporate important parts of their lives into the day’s celebration and made sure that their family and friends knew how much they appreciated their help with the venue and celebrations as well as their love and support of their union.

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Event Credits

Attire: Hannah's Dress: BHLDN // Aleah's dress: Jenny YooFlorist: handpicked from Elvin's Farm // jewelry: Alexis Russell, Wedding Band: D. Cole JewelersLocation: Readfield, MaineMusic: Justin Gilbert DJ // Cake: Silly's Portland // Caterer: White Flour CateringPhotography: Gretchen Powers Film and Photo
Also posted in Attire, Attire, Cakes and Dessert, Casual Elegance, Caterer, Classic, Credits, DIY, Dress + Dress, Florist, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Maine, Music, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, Two Dress Wedding | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Responses

Wedding: Kayla & Lauren

From Kayla & Lauren: We shared our engagement photos a while back & wanted to share our wedding photos too! Our day was everything we could have wanted. We felt so lucky to be surrounded by our friends and family with so much love.

Photos courtesy of Michelle VanTine Photography.

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Event Credits

Attire: New York Bride and GroomCakes and Dessert: Fancy Cakes by LeslieCatering: The Tabard InnFlorist: Park FloristLocation: The Tabard Inn - Washington DCPhotography: Michelle VanTine Photography
Also posted in Attire, Attire, Cakes and Dessert, Caterer, Classic, Credits, Dress + Dress, Florist, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, Two Dress Wedding, Venue, Washington DC | Tagged , , , , , | Comments closed

Wedding: Jen & Beth

We found today’s wedding through Beth’s personal blog, The Babbling Blonde—and we couldn’t be happier! After you’ve ready Beth & Jen’s story and scrolled through the gorgeous photos below, make your next step Beth’s site, where you can read Beth’s “Tales of a Bisexual Bride,” as well as other stories from Beth and Jen’s wedding planning experience!

Now, here’s their story: Jen and Beth met in the early spring of 2014 when they began working at the same company. After a fast friendship made them platonic companions for the next year, both of them finally wised up to the fact that there was something more to the relationship. They began dating in the summer of 2015, and Jen proposed at Konzelmann winery among the waters of Niagara Falls in Canada in July of 2016.

As a super fan of the Dave Matthews Band, Beth had previously bribed Jen to chase the band around to quite a few concerts over the years, including one in Charlottesville, Virginia. While they were in town for the show that same summer, they attended a wine tasting at Blenheim Vineyards, the local winery owned by Dave. Beth and Jen fell in love with the atmosphere and decided to make it their wedding venue.

After several visits to the winery and a few months of hectic planning, the two tied the knot on April 22, 2017. The skies couldn’t have been darker, and the rain couldn’t have been steadier, but everything was perfect under the tent outside by the sprawling vineyard. The cozy ceremony took place in the same space as the reception with a few reading from close friends, a gift and sand ceremony with Jen’s  5-year-old daughter, Mia, and an ode to the elements.

Once they made it official, Beth, Jen, and Mia ate and danced the night away with their closest family and friends. The first dance was to Ellie Goulding’s “Love Me Like You Do”, and they finished the night out in rambunctious style with Katy Perry’s “I Kissed A Girl”. The food was delicious, the cake was to die for, and guests also enjoyed a homestyle cookie table supplied by Beth’s family, which is a Pittsburgh and West Virginia wedding staple.

The wedding made official what everyone already knew: a little family of two became #McDpartyof3, finally legally.

Photos courtesy of Melissa Jean Photography.

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Event Credits

Catering: C & O Restaurant // Bakery: Sweethaus Bakery Location: Blenheim Vineyards // Photographer: Melissa Jean PhotographyOfficiant: Amber Baker // Hair & Make-Up: Best Face Forward and Kelly Matheny of Bella Hair
Also posted in Attire, Cakes and Dessert, Caterer, Classic, Credits, Family, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Officiant, Other, Pants + Dress, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, Tattoos, Venue, Virginia | Tagged , , , , , | Comments closed

Engagement: Allison & Tiffany

From the couple’s photographer, Cassandra: For Allison and Tiffany, it was love at first sight. Playful, lighthearted, and endlessly making one another laugh, these lovebirds infuse joy in all who surround them.

Our original plans to visit a Nashville park for Allison and Tiffany’s destination engagement were very much canceled when the skies opened up and it stormed the entire weekend. We moved our session to the gorgeous Gaylord Opryland Resort, which featured architectural details, palms, fountains, and even beautiful New Orleans-style buildings — which all made for the perfect location to celebrate their upcoming “I Do’s.” 

Photos courtesy of Cassandra Zetta.

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Event Credits

Location: Gaylord Opryland Resort, Nashville, TNPhotography: Cassandra Zetta (www.cassandrazetta.com)
Also posted in Credits, Lesbian Engagement Shoot, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Tennessee | Tagged , | Comments closed
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