Ooh! It’s been a while since I have blogged! I hope you’re following me over on Instagram as I have been sharing there more recently! But, alas, this blog post is long over due. This past Spring a dear friend of mine (client turned friend of course!) hired me to photograph her elopement at the very same venue me and my hubby married! It was a full circle little dream come true for me, especially being on the other side! We taxied over to Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel and then after their nuptials headed over Fremont street for photos… Hope you enjoy! xoxoxo

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Mark’s excitement for their upcoming “Elvis” ceremony set the tone of the day!

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I’ll never forget how starstruck and mesmorized Laura was to meet Elvis! Of course he walked her down the aisle!

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super fun las vegas wedding with elvis at viva las vegas wedding chapel
super fun las vegas wedding with elvis at viva las vegas wedding chapel

After their nuptials, we took a cab ride over to Fremont street for drinks, gambling and a little fun!

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bride and groom kiss while elvis impersonator drives by in vintage car

In this moment, I saw a really beautiful vintage car and literally pushed Laura & Mark into the street to kiss! Not until I got my film back did I realize that Elvis was driving the car!  Kismet.  The photo of Laura laughing is because Mark was worried about my liability insurance (he’s an attorney!) since I pushed them into on coming traffic.  :)

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Sharing my favorites from Bryant & Alan’s magical wedding at The Witt Estate. Special thanks to Snippet & Ink for sharing their sweet story.  And thanks to the amazing team of vendors including Alison Events, Jessica Lasky Catering and Shotgun Floral Design.

 

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Happy Anniversary to my best friend – Danielle! Danielle & Johnny married last Valentine’s Day 2015 at their home in our hometown of Vista, California. Shooting her wedding was special for me, and she included me in so many important parts.  We went dress shopping together –  and about to give up, we went into Macy’s and found her perfect short boho dress for $30! Since I work at Snippet & Ink I helped her source some amazing ceremony content ideas.  Her ceremony was probably the most meaningful one I had ever witnessed.  Danielle has a strong core of best friends from elementary school (we met in 4th grade!) and middle school.  Her friend Kevin (a talented musician) officiated their ceremony and both Danielle and Johnny included surprises for each other.

 

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Danielle has been journaling for as long as I can remember.  I’m talking since as long as I’ve known her!  She chronicled everything in her life including the night she met Johnny and their entire courtship.  I never realized how meaningful readings were until Danielle asked me and two other core best friends to read journal entries during their ceremony.  (How fun that I was their wedding photographer and also was part of the ceremony!) The readings were thoughtful, real, raw and one even indicated (before she had met Johnny) what her dream man looked like, how he treated his mother and what they would do together.  I don’t remember verbatim but something like: “He is tall and has green eyes, he’s a mama’s boy and treats her well, and he will be okay with watching The Office with me on a Saturday night.”  It’s insane to me that, that’s exactly who Johnny is and that’s exactly what Danielle asked the universe for.  Kismet.

 

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Danielle’s journals were so incredibly special, and then it was Johnny’s turn.  As he started to recite his vows, he harmoniously belted out a 6 song medley for Danielle from Beyoncé to Kenny Loggins. It was incredible and guess what – you can WATCH IT RIGHT HERE!  The ceremony was nothing short of magical and even as I write this I’m starting to tear up. There was lots of laughter and lots of happy crying.  It was perfect in so many ways, and exactly who Johnny and Danielle are.

 

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It really did take a village to produce Danielle & Johnny’s wedding and that’s one of the many reasons why I loved it. Friends and family banded together to create so many amazing things!  Johnny, his sisters and their friends created the teepee and spray painted it gold.  One sister created DIY Lace Tambourines, hand dipped gold glittered feathers, spray painted cans and bottles for table decor.  Another friend, a chalkboard artist, created all the signage.

 

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I’m sharing this story for so many reasons:  I’m very proud of my best friend and how hard she fought for this love.  Their wedding is by no means glitzy, or expensive, but the core of it was meaningful and it didn’t matter how much they spent on it. I photographed it and I love the pics. But most importantly, I’m deeply inspired by the meaning of their wedding and although I LOVED MY WEDDING part of me feels like I missed the mark on tying in more meaningful traditions, readings, vows, etc.  I only hope that all my clients really take this sweet story to heart.  Concentrate on what means most to you.  If you don’t have the budget, you can still have an amazing wedding, and Danielle & Johnny spent less than 5k on their perfect wedding! Focus on what matters because although the florals and details are gorgeous, they won’t be want you care about in 20 years.  You’re going to care about the photos that make you pause, the photos that bring back memories.

 

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This last photo is a favorite of mine.  Since Johnny and Danielle were on a tight budget they couldn’t plan a honeymoon.  Their friends surprised them by walking around to guests with a ‘honeymoon pot” fund. They were raise enough to allow Johnny and Danielle enjoy a two day mini moon – so sweet!  Thanks so much to Rock n Roll Bride Magazine for featuring their wedding!   xoxoxo

 

Vendor Credits:

Photography: Christina McNeill / Venue: Private Residence in Vista, California / Officiant: Kevin Martin / Rentals: Witty Rentals / Hair & Makeup: Audra Rene / Signage: Melinda Gabarda / Catering: Tekila Cocina / Dress: Macy’s / Shoes: Frye’s / Vest: Pendleton