Every wedding is different. Sometimes, the day is packed with cheerful laughter, jokes, and endless fun. Other times, the day takes on a very romantic, calm, and sentimental mood. But eeeevery once in a while, I am lucky enough to photograph a wedding that includes all of the above-mentioned traits. July 9, 2016 was one of those *special* weddings; one with so much love and laughter, your cheeks ache with perma-smile and your eyes well up with emotion.
Nicole and Matt became Mr. and Mrs. Bukas at the beautiful Mill at Fine Creek. Cascading, green ivy can be spotted as far as the eye can see, but the free-flowing creek is my favorite hidden treasure at this venue. If I could pick one word to sum up this beautiful location, it would be "WOW". I have photographed barns, beaches, ballrooms, churches, and country clubs, but The Mill is by far the biggest show-stopper of them all.
I have to mention my most favorite detail of the day; Nicole's dress. Not only is it absolutely STUNNING, but it is truly a work of art. Believe it or not, this gown was custom made for her, using fabric from her mother's original wedding dress (see photo of the original dress in the gallery below). And the best part? She didn't show her mom the final product until the grand reveal right before her ceremony! Nicole's mom had the most perfect reaction; true and utter bliss. This has to be one of my favorite wedding moments to have documented thus far.
If I had to choose a second favorite detail, it would be the fact that Aiden, (Nicole and Matt's adorable son) was able to witness his mommy and daddy get married. There is something so dear about the photo of him playing with his toy truck next to his parent's feet as they say their "I Do's" that makes me hold back tears every time I see it. The theme of family is carried out from start to finish, noting another beautiful first look between Nicole and her father before the nuptials began. Flowers were given to each set of parents during the ceremony to signify unity, which only further demonstrates how large this couple's hearts are.
From a naked fresh-fruit cake to a fully-stocked bar, this wedding had all the sweets and treats necessary to fuel a lively dance party after dinner. Lots of speeches, a few tears, and plenty of jokes later, Nicole danced the night away with her new husband, friends, and family before an ultra-colorful and fun glow stick exit. I'm so thankful for weddings like these, where the clouds seem to part and the stars all align so that "the perfect wedding day" can exist and keep me begging for more. Join me in taking a look back at my favorite photos from Nicole and Matt's special day!
*** As always, I am so honored to have been a part of this beautiful day, and I truly can't thank Nicole, Matt, or their sweet friends and family enough for their amazing treatment. I also have to give another huuuuuge shout-out to my super talented second-shooter/BFF (who captured a bunch of these awesome shots), Kam Goodrich of Kam Goodrich Photography; I could not have done this without you. ***
Check out Nicole's beautiful mother in her original wedding gown, long before Nicole customized it for her own wedding!!
Venue: The Mill at Fine Creek
DJ: DJ Kat of KD Productions
Musician: Corey Blake
Cake: Debra Bukas
Flowers and Coordination: Stewart Berry Designs
Hair: Amanda Alley
Makeup: Kirsty Wingfield
Photography: Sarah Elizabeth Kelly of Sarah Elizabeth Photography
Second-Photographer: Kamaron Goodrich of Kam Goodrich Photography
I'm Sarah Elizabeth! I specialize in engagements, weddings, and boudoir photography! Happily servicing Richmond and surrounding areas since 2013, but will gladly come to you!