Head's up: this is going to be lengthy.
Since about half past 7 last Friday evening, making my way underground to the DuPoint Circle metro station, I have been considering this blog. What to write. Casey and I share the same birthday and a love for vintage jewelry... Poo-poo!
I didn't (and don't) want to trivialize this day in any way.
The truth is, it's been difficult for me to put into words how touched by this wedding, this couple, I was. Last autumn, Casey emailed me the day after she got engaged! To me, it was a HUGE compliment; that this crazy-smart, fiercely adventurous woman chose to email me the next day. I was immediately overcome with excitement. (I think I may have even cried a little bit).
At the time of our first emails, Casey and her fiancé David were looking into dates for a traditional wedding in October and November. Life has a funny way of sorting itself out, though, and shortly after we began emailing, David scored a job in New York City, and these two moved house from DC to Brooklyn to begin anew. Wedding plans were put on hold so that David and Casey both could settle into their new lives as New Yorkers!
Then, in May, Casey called me and said that she and David really just wanted to get married. (Love that). She explained that in the coming weeks, there was a date where loved ones on both sides of the family were all going to be able to be together, and the couple had decided to take advantage of the day and elope! They had reserved the incredible Anderson House in Washington D.C. and were wondering if I was available on that day too. I was!
I have a personal mantra, which is, "What is supposed to happen will". I try to apply this in every aspect of my life, as it helps me to put into perspective the blessings I have, and allows me to be grateful for the paths I've been down, and continue to pursue. There are, of course, days where I compare myself, and the things I do, to others. I am only human. However, events such as Casey and David's elopement remind me that I am so very blessed to do what I do, and, especially, with who.
There's a lot of talk in the wedding industry--and especially in the photography world--about ideal clients. I've given this a lot of thought, but it wasn't until I photographed Casey and David's day did I realize I was doing just that!
I've admired Casey for quite some time; we shared a class or two throughout our time at Poquoson High School. It wasn't until after high school--in recent years--that I reconnected with Casey, and marveled via those familiar square images as she shared her triumphs and travels.
After 8 years in China, working and volunteering around the country, even visiting North Korea (!!!), Casey gained fluency in the culture of the country, Mandarin, and a handsome boyfriend! She has a love for empowering women from all walks of life. What's more is that in all of the planning and emails sent back and forth between she and I, Casey reiterated how very important it was for her to be "in the moment" throughout their day, and that she valued my photography for my emphasis on moments.
Ultimately, a wedding day is all about those moments. Be it big or small, those threads which connect together to create the story of the first day of your marriage are what's most important. I needed to be reminded of this. I needed to come back to Earth; to remember why I am in this wedding photography game. It's not about me. Casey, knowing what I've stood for, was the one to bring me back to the place where I belong. What could be more ideal than that?
Casey and David's wedding day, from beginning to the sweetest end, was a highlight of my career so far. I photographed the day alongside my love, Logan, and he shot some of my favorite images from the day. (I am SO proud of him!)
The day was full of meaning, deep respect, spirituality, and a love that was is incredibly beautiful. I especially loved how David looks at Casey; how he's so very gentle and affectionate to her. These two share a passion for each other and a connection that's obviously very strong.
I adored this vintage hair clip one of Casey's sister fastened into her hair. One of my favorite moments during this part of the day was when Casey's other other sister joked that it was her turn to help, and she did, by assisting Casey with her birdcage veil.
Casey is the middle sister of two fiery redheads, who is clearly adored by them both!
And let me say this: I fell in love with those two!
Casey revealed very little about her bridal details to her mother and sisters before her wedding day, which created an element of surprise for everyone. No one had seen her beautiful J.Crew wedding gown.
When she traveled from Brooklyn to D.C., Casey brought with her a small selection of jewelry, which she laid out in the hotel room. Together, Casey, her mother, and her sisters looked over each piece thoughtfully, before ultimately deciding on a gorgeous vintage necklace. She adorned her fingers with a signet ring, and a ruby ring that was her mother's as a child.
The Anderson House, which was completed in the spring of 1905, was a mansion for Larz Anderson, who was an American diplomat, and his wife Isabel. They used the house for storing their collections of art, and hosting lavish parties. The home is mind-bendingly gorgeous. There's a room with a gilded papier-mache ceilings, and ridiculously ornate carved wood can be found throughout the house. It has been a venue I'd been eyeing for a little while, wanting to shoot. Coincidentally, Casey and David's anniversary is the same as Larz and Isabel's!
Before the ceremony inside, everyone met under the shade of magnolia trees, to witness Casey and David sign their katubah.
The ceremony took place inside, in the Ballroom. It was dramatic, intimate, and lovely.
One of my very favorite parts of the day was when we were given a guided tour around the house!
We may have deviated from the group a bit...
As Casey's mom put it, she's got a "killer neck".
Logan especially loved the bouquets the girls had! Little Shop of Flowers did a beautiful job!
To Casey & David, there are no words for how grateful I am to you both. Your wedding day was unlike any other! Here's to your bright, bright, bright future!
Hotel | Marriott Wardman Park
Wedding Gown | J. Crew
Flowers | Little Shop of Flowers
Ceremony Venue | The Anderson House, Washington D.C.
Catering | Windows
Rabbi | Esther Lederman
Katubah | This is Not a Katubah Yes It Is
Reception/Dinner Venue | The Tabard Inn
Cake | Rise Bakery
Cake Topper | Etsy