So many of my summer 2020 couples made the hard decision to make changes to their original wedding plans so they could still tie the knot on their original date. Keri and Darin were no different and their intimate Divine Child wedding turned out to be just the loveliest day!
Maybe you remember Keri and Darin’s beautiful fall engagement session, with appearances by their adorable dog Callie — she makes an appearance in their wedding photos too, don’t worry! If you’re thinking of including your dog in your wedding photos, do it! I wish Nora was in ours – biggest regret for me of our wedding day for sure.
Keri and Darin met at Central Michigan University and were together almost eight years before their wedding day! They were originally planning a large 300+ person wedding, so what you’ll see below is very different from what we thought we’d be doing! These two are some of the most genuinely kind people you’ll ever meet. Keri and I had some long phone calls to discuss how best to proceed with the wedding and I never was upset to hear from her. She and Darin handled all of the changes with a lot of grace. They told me that they knew what was important to them about their wedding and planned around that. I think it turned out exactly perfect because it really centered around Keri and Darin in a very relaxed environment.
Keri is a teacher at Divine Child and it was important for them when re-planning their wedding to keep the day as an intimate Divine Child wedding. Surrounded by their wedding party and closest family, they said “I do!” on their original wedding date, followed by a backyard reception at Keri’s parents’ home. It was all beautifully put together and full of so much love! It was a hot day, but I had so much fun with these two and their people. It was one of those days where you feel like family. We took portraits at Nankin Mills which is one of my favorite spots in the Dearborn area for photos!
Though Keri and Darin opted against a first look, they decided they still wanted a special moment to themselves before they saw each other down the aisle. They opted for a first touch around a door where they exchanged letters. If you’re not into the whole first look thing, this is a great way to still have a special moment together before the ceremony! I love when couples exchange letters (whether in person or separately) and think it’s a beautiful private moment for you both. Sometimes you can say things in writing that just won’t come out otherwise.
Katie and Adam’s Cherry Barc Farm wedding was supposed to happen in late May 2020, but the pandemic had other plans. They pushed it to later in the summer and were able to have their celebration!
Katie was referred to me by a college friend of mine and when we first met, I knew we’d get along great! By the time of this wedding, this was Katie and Adam’s third time being photographed by me…old pros! Their engagement photos are just adorable, check them out here!
Their Cherry Barc Farm wedding took place entirely on the property, including getting ready, the ceremony, and the reception. The guys got ready in the barn loft, while the ladies got ready in a separate on-site suite. Having everything in one place is always the best and gives us more time to take portraits or just a buffer in the schedule in case things run a little late!
After a beautiful first look, we took portraits around the property. Cherry Barc Farm is beautiful with gorgeous orchard vibes and lots of tall wildflowers. We tried to make use of all of it! Adam’s daughter Jade did a first look with her dad (the cutest thing and check out her flower girl dress!).
The ceremony took place under a beautiful large tree, and the rain we thought might show up didn’t even bother to come until much later in the day (whew). Katie and Adam were just brimming with happiness the whole day and I’m so glad they got to have the celebration they’ve been dreaming of for so long!
I’m also a huge fan of the emerald bridesmaid dresses on these ladies. What a gorgeous color! And honestly works in every season. I really like how jewel tones are becoming more popular.
Though we didn’t get a beautiful sunset, we ended the night with some portraits under the string lights — the second best thing you could have if you don’t get a sunset! I love an end of the night photo to round out the story of a day and to include in an album. It just gives it closure!
July is always a beautiful time for a wedding, but perfect for the Divine Child wedding of Leah and Dan. After making the difficult decision to cancel their reception, they decided that getting married on their original date with their closest family was perfect for them. Their Divine Child wedding in Dearborn was followed by some incredible Downtown Detroit wedding photos on literally the most beautiful July day. I don’t think we could have asked for more.
Despite not having the “traditional” wedding structure, Leah and Dan still wanted major aspects of their day captured, so we started with getting ready photos of them separately (Dan at the couple’s home and Leah at her parents’). I got to work alongside videographer Diffuse Media which was such a treat for me! These two did not opt for a first look but wrote each other letters which they read after getting dressed. They were absolutely beautiful to hear. Letters are one of my favorite ways to make a wedding day special without a first look.
The Church of the Divine Child in Dearborn is a gorgeous church to be married in, and I was lucky enough to capture a Divine Child wedding twice in 2020! After a beautiful mass, we headed downtown to the Detroit riverfront for some downtown Detroit wedding photos. Then we made sure to end at Woodward Avenue and Parker’s Alley for a few urban shots. I just love the images of the Renaissance Center in the backdrop – too gorgeous! I’m lucky for clients who listen to my location suggestions and let me take the reins to make gorgeous images.
Though COVID threw these two some curveballs, as Leah said, the important thing to them was to be married. And they did just that and had such a beautiful day, even if it wasn’t the Masonic Temple large reception they envisioned.
I just love a summer Detroit backyard wedding. One of my favorite parts of 2020 was the pivoting to backyard wedding celebrations. Leina and Tom planned a simple backyard wedding to begin with; no change of plans needed when the pandemic continued to impact our lives.
It was a hot day for a Detroit backyard wedding. And I truly mean hot – very sweaty, very humid, and just a typical midwestern Michigan July day, just before Independence Day. But this didn’t make the celebration any less special, just that everyone changed out of their suits and ties and pants after all the photos were done.
Leina has an infectious personality. She is sweet and has a big laugh as you can see in the photos. I loved her simple boho dress – it just suited her. A first look with Tom and then her son Eli was the perfect way to kick off this Detroit backyard wedding!
The ceremony space was decorated with an arch with florals by the insanely talented (and super sweet but now Nashville bound) Kinship Flower Farm. Tom and Leina said their vows amongst their closest family and friends, about 30 or so people. After the ceremony and signing of the marriage license, they participated in a Polish tradition in which the husband and wife are presented with two shot glasses, one has vodka and one has water. Whoever gets the vodka is apparently the boss of the marriage. Maybe you can figure out who won by the images.
The best part of summer backyard weddings is their simplicity. The kids played badminton and danced in sprinklers. The guests greeted Tom’s mother’s chickens. Everyone ate and chatted leisurely. There were a few toasts and most people were dressed comfortably. I feel like it was absolutely perfect and I hope for more Detroit backyard weddings in the future!
Back in March, we just didn’t know how things were going to pan out with the pandemic. Many of my May and June couples decided to move their wedding dates to later in the year or to 2021. Sharon and Destin knew they wanted to get married on their original date if they could. Luckily, they were able to make it work with their immediate families and have their intimate COVID Michigan wedding! This was a huge departure from their planned large wedding at The Townsend Hotel in Birmingham, but to them, getting married was the important part.
The couple was married at Orchard Lake Community Church, which is right on Cass Lake, a beautiful summer backdrop! We had literally the perfect summer day. Sharon did her own hair and make-up for the occasion, and I think she did a fantastic job. In front of their immediate families, they said their vows in their intimate COVID Michigan wedding.
These two did not reschedule their reception and thank goodness I was able to document this beautiful day for them. Even an intimate wedding deserves beautiful photos!
Last year, I was so lucky to photograph a Fenton Brewery Winery wedding not once but twice! Yes, Amber and Ben’s summer Fenton Brewery Winery wedding was the perfect way to end my busy August 2019. Remember their amazing engagement session at Blake’s?
I knew Amber and Ben’s Fenton Brewery Winery wedding was going to be freaking gorgeous because when I first met Amber and her stepmom Kariss for a consult, she described to me a perfect blend of rustic whimsy with a brewery vibe. That’s exactly what we got!
Not only was the space beautiful and literally perfectly decorated with growlers, greenery and handmade wine cork coaster favors, but Amber literally looked straight out of Game of Thrones or Brave or just like a warrior princess. Her hair was a DREAM!
One of my favorite things about Amber and Ben is that they truly have fun together. They know how to laugh together and my favorite photos of them are when they’re laughing. Most of the day was filled with smiles and laughter, not many tears at all! Okay, a few from dad. But I thought everyone brought the joy vibes most all of the day!
When you have a wedding at a brewery winery, you know you’re going to have loads of beer (and beer references). There were hops in Amber’s bouquet and hop cuff links for Ben. All of the guys had hop socks!
I think the most special moment of the entire wedding was watching Amber dance with her grandpa. It wasn’t a planned part that we had discussed ahead of time or anything but I loved that she decided to share a dance with him. It was the sweetest thing to watch.
I’m so glad I got to photograph this summer Fenton Brewery Winery wedding. Someone please take me back in 2020 or 2021! This venue is one of my favorites!