Keri & Jim’s Branford House Wedding ~ Mystic Connecticut Photographers

Keri & Jim’s wedding was something Andy & I had been looking forward to for nearly two years! Even though we get to witness a lot of “I dos,” it’s not often that we’re also there for the, “Yes!” that inevitably leads a couple to the aisle. But, we were there for Keri’s, “Yes!” and that made also being there for her and Jim’s “I dos!” that much more special!!!

Back in the fall of 2013, a very sweet Jim had reached out to us because he was planning a romantic weekend on the Cape with his girlfriend, Keri, and he was going to pop the question and ask her to marry him. It doesn’t get much more romantic than that!! He reached out to us because he thought it would be nice to have that moment captured in photographs. Having never photographed an actual proposal before, we were super excited for the opportunity to be in on such an intimate moment.

Jim & I spoke over the phone and in emails for several weeks, planning how it would all go down. And, as if the love Gods were shining down on us all, Jim got an unseasonably warm November day to sweep his girl off her feet. As expected, Keri said, “Yes!” and so began the wedding planning. You can read more about them and their proposal HERE and also check out their super sweet spring love session HERE.

Andy & I have grown quite fond of Keri & Jim over these many months. They are two of the sweetest, kindest, most sincerely loving, happy, wonderful, fun people and we just knew their wedding would be full of the kind of love & goodness that makes getting great photos a cinch….and even better….makes us LOVE what we do!

The wedding itself took place at the stunning University of Connecticut’s Branford House, located at the seaside Avery Point in Groton. Originally built in 1903 by wealthy railroad magnate Morton Freeman Plant, the 31-room Tudor style granite mansion was designed by his wife, Nellie, and named after the town where he was born. Eventually, the mansion was sold and ended up in the hands of the State of Connecticut. It became the property of the US Coast Guard for a time, and then was turned over to the University of Connecticut as a branch campus.

With a unique history, the Branford House is a truly stunning backdrop for a wedding, and it was super fun for us to be somewhere new!

We arrived in Groton the day before the wedding to check out the area and find our spots for pictures…..and there were LOTS of great spots!! We then popped in on their welcome party later that night, to meet their families. Everyone was super welcoming, which made us even more excited for the big day.

The morning of the wedding, I met Keri & the girls at the Red Door Spa, in the Mystic Marriott, where Keri, Jim, their wedding party and nearly all of their wedding guests were staying. Loved that!

In this first photo, Keri is getting her wedding day make up applied, while her super sweet and doting MOH, Kate, looks on.

After hair & make up were done, the girls all headed to the Branford House to get dressed. With all of its stunning woodwork & detailed architecture, the Branford House was a picture perfect back drop for getting ready! Such a treat! But, the best part was that Keri was smiling the entire time. Sometimes brides get so caught in the moment of getting dressed that they pull really funny/serious faces. I’m often having to say, “happy thoughts” or “happy faces” to remind them to relax. But, with Keri, it was all smiles….all day!  See what I mean as Keri gets tied into her dress by Kate & another bestie, Justine…

I love the look on Keri’s lovely momma’s face as she watches her baby girl get dressed. Momma Jeannine and Justine help put the finishing ties to the dress, and she’s soon ready to go.

Love her girlfriends’ reactions….Sweet Jolene got a bit emotional. Awwwwww!!

Our gorgeous gals: Tara, Justine, Jessica (Jim’s cousin), Keri, Kate, Jolene & Jessica (Keri’s cousin). Pretty ladies + pretty light + pretty room = pretty easy job for me.

The arched doorways and stunning fireplace mantle made for a perfect frame for our lovely bride. Isn’t she ga ga gorgeous?!!

Meanwhile, back at the hotel, Jim gets a little help with his cufflinks from his best man, Brian, as the rest of the guys get ready too.

Love the nautical inspired bowties from Vineyard Vines….almost as much as this candid moment Andy captured as Frank (who’s married to Jim’s cousin, Jess) takes a selfie with Jim’s lovely momma, Gail.

Our handsome groom. I love this photo Andy captured of Jim….he looks so seriously serene, and this may have been the only time all day he wasn’t smiling the biggest smile I’ve ever seen. Watching Jim make his way to the ceremony was particularly sweet. He was BEAMING….like a kid on Christmas morning who got everything on his wish list!

The lovely guys: Joe, Jason, Frank, Jim, Brian, Jason (Keri’s big brother) and Scott. Such warm, fun, funny guys! Love them!

Jim is an only child and the apple of his momma’s eye. Watching her relish how happy her son was on this very special day was such a treat. Jim’s proud papa, Richard, was also a love! Truly, such an awesome group to not only work with, but get to know and welcome to our bello family!

Keri makes her way to her soon-to-be hubby, flanked by her mom & dad, Jeannine & Peter. Is she beaming or what???!!!

As was her main squeeze…..if this isn’t the look of love, I don’t know what is!

More happy…..

As perfect as their proposal day and engagement day were, their wedding day could not be topped….perfection in every way!

Father Shawn Smith infused a lot of humor into Keri & Jim’s ceremony, which seemed perfectly befitting this fun couple!

Happy friends & family look on, showing their love & support with more happy smiles…

Audrey (Jess’s & Frank’s baby girl) listens sleepily during the ceremony…..what a little cherub, eh?!!!

With this ring….

Gail & Jeannine fight the wind on the point to light the unity candle. It made for some giggling by everyone. Love that!!

And with that….our new mister & missus are married. Happy. Happy. Happy!! Now off for some photos….

After the family portraits on the lawn, we took the bridal party to the front of the House to take advantage of the shade and cool building facade. This next shot makes me laugh because it was taken right after Andy got pooped on by a very angry seagull. There were several birds circling above us as we were photographing the bridal party. They were squawking and seemed irritated we were there. One let us know exactly how he felt. Ironically, I heard the splash as a portion of the sizable deposit hit the floor, right next to me, and I thought to myself, “Phew….that was close.” I looked up and the bridal party had this reaction as they realized the bird got Andy, who took it like a trooper and laughed it off. We got a picture of him too, but will save that one for Jim & Keri. Love the reactions of everyone…this was such a fun group! Totally worth getting pooped on. (Easy for me to say.) Happily, Andy was able to clean up and no one was the wiser…plus, it makes for a great story for Keri, Jim and their friends.

And then there were two….two very happy people.

Love these two together so much!!!

A little stroll to the lighthouse at sunset…..ahhhhhh!

A couple who laughs together stays together….

Jim gives us the thumbs up….she said Yes! AND I do! Woooo hooo!!

Love, smiles and delicious kisses…..This is love!

Such joy…and a backdrop that rivals any of the Newport Mansions. Could be my new favorite place to photograph!

The gorgeous Sperry Tent and beautiful cake by Coastal Gourmet Caterers.

Love the besties’ selfie introduction (and obviously so do J&K)….you guys rock!!

The new Mr. & Mrs……let’s get this party started!

In your arms….it’s where I always want to be….

Warm embraces as the setting sun streams into the tent. Just beautiful!

Love this sweet gal….way to rock the toast Katie!!

Jim & Keri reacting to all the love directed their way…eat it up guys! Eat up all that glorious love!

Sunset…..Mmmmmmm good!

Gail gets all emotional dancing with her sweet boy, as a tear runs down her beautiful face. So lovely!!!

Meanwhile Keri & her crazy dad get down on it….you go you two!!! Me & my dad went nuts to Shout at my & Andy’s wedding. I’ll never forget Dad turning to me while we’re on our backs on the floor and saying, “You make me wild, Chrissy!” It is in these moments of connection that our strongest memories are formed. Blessed are we who let love rule!!

And, who also play with cake…..deeeeelicious!

Get it guys…get it!!

Life is to be lived large and celebrated with great passion….today and always.

Dance like no one is watching….and smile with your whole heart.

For when the night comes our dreams shall be made of this….

Jim & Keri….I wish words could do justice to how much we appreciate you both, your families & friends and how warmly you all welcomed us into your lives and into this amazing day of love & celebration!! Your wedding was the stuff from which fairy tales are made. And, your love is both inspiring and contagious!! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!! For sharing your beautiful hearts and this beautiful day with us!! We feel so grateful to have been able to be there to document all of the love & goodness that sprang from a Yes that warm November day and led us all to this. You will forever hold a special place in our hearts as we hope these photos hold a special place in yours!! We adore you and feel so happy you found your way into our life!! More to come soon!! Big love & hugs, Chris & Andy xoxox

 

Holly & Paul’s Wychmere Wedding ~ Harwich Port Wedding Photographers

Holly & Paul’s fabulous Wychmere Beach Club wedding took place a few weekends ago, before the crazy heat wave. Instead, theirs was a quintessentially perfect Cape Cod day. Sunny, blue skies, not too hot and drrrryyyyyy, which for this sweaty gal is all I need to make for an amazing day!

Making it even more special was the fact that Holly & Paul are wonderful people and a perfect pairing!! We first met Holly eight plus years ago, at the wedding of her sister, Michelle. And, we’ve had the pleasure of seeing her a few times since for family portraits on the Cape. Paul is a bit of a newcomer to our Bello family, although he & Holly have known each other for quite some time now. You can read more about them and their road to love HERE.

And, we can get right to what folks come here for….the photos!

I am completely in LOVE with Holly’s crazy beautiful Amsale wedding gown. There are few gowns I don’t love, but hers was something I would totally love to wear and am seriously considering getting married again so I can!! The tulle and lace detailing on the front was absolutely stunning and so beautifully feminine. And, on Holly…..it was perfection!!!

Some more room details in the beautiful Wychmere suites…such great rooms to photograph in…loveeee me a white background! And, Holly’s adorable Kate Spade shoes that perfectly complimented the belt on her dress. LOVE!

I mean….come on!!!! Is she gorgeous or what? Her hair by Fisher Experience and dress gave such an Audrey Hepburn vibe to me. And, the gorgeous flowers with blush peonies (in AUGUST no less….WOW!) by the fabulous Lilac Florals were the perfect compliment.

One word…..STUNNING!

Holly’s crazy cute nieces, Mackenzie and Cameron, are regulars in front of our cameras and two of the sweetest little peanuts there ever were. Mackie was seriously busting some killer moves later in the night and having the time of her life late into the night. Such wonderful memories of their Auntie’s special day!

Adorable little flower girls…

Waiting for her dad….

John is one of the nicest guys on the planet and seeing him see his baby girl ready to marry her dream guy was just delightful…

And off to the church she goes, with her gal pals in tow. Such a fun bunch!!

Meanwhile, in another area of the resort, Paul gets ready with his mates…

Including little brother and best man extraordinaire, Tommy.

Mackie & Cammie’s little brother, Will was also in the wedding party…though he seemed more interested in his dad’s phone. Can we talk about the linen suit and the saddle shoes for just a second???? Paired with a matching Vineyard Vines tie…same as the groomsmen were wearing. It’s just too much cuteness.

The guys are ready to go….

Preparing to enter the ceremony at Our Lady of Annunciation in Dennisport. Despite Cammie & Mackie’s best efforts, they cannot convince their cousin, Kinsley, that being a flower girl is really fun..ADORABLE!

Here comes the bride…

The hand off…

Love the storytelling going on in this next one….how Holly is holding onto Paul and her sister, Michelle, and how Paul’s lovely momma, Anne Marie is wiping tears in the background. So much love & pride! Just wonderful!

Sandwiched between her grandparents, Susan & John, Mackie looks on with intense curiosity as her Auntie Holly and soon-to-be Uncle Paul say, “I do!”

The look of love…

More love & happy faces….

And with a kiss, he & she become WE….

woooo hoooo…..

LOVE the happiness written all over their beautiful faces….

The timeless quality of this next lovely moment makes my heart purr.

This is why I love living and working where we do. Viva Cape Cod!!

Happy kisses…

And snuggling beneath the veil….soooo much happy!!!!!

We did it…..we’re married!!! It’s a moment that hits every couple after they say, “I do!” And, it’s one you just never forget.

A field of green beach grass + a bride & groom and their posse = Cape Cod wedding perfection

Holly & Paul sailed into their cocktail hour…talk about a grand entrance. LOOVE it!

And so did their friends & family…

Yeeeeeaaaahhhh!!!

It was a bit windy even in the harbor…..but that just meant they had to hold on tight, which is always a good thing.

Smiles and sailboats and sunny skies, oh my!

Waving to family & friends as they dock….now, let’s get this party started!

It’s been so fascinating for us to see how much things have changed in terms of the way folks photograph at weddings. When we first started you rarely saw a camera, and I suppose that’s still the case today, but now we see LOTS of phones and iPads and while it’s great that people can capture these fun moments, I love seeing people put down their phones and really being present in the moment. Just look at how different the faces are without a phone in front of them.

Blush-a-liciousness.

I think this is my favorite color palette at the moment…so stinking pretty.

Seats for the stars of the day….

Guests enjoying themselves during cocktail hour.  I just love documenting these candid moments.

More happy….

Happily ever hashtaged…

Mr. & Mrs.

Love this moment when a couple is introduced to their reception…so much fun energy, so much love & support. It’s just wonderful!

And right into their first dance…still smiling and basking in the glory of all the love & support.

More love & support, and some playful teasing came during the speeches…first up, MOH Michelle….love her!!!

Bridesmaid Emily giggles during the speeches….so cute!

Tommy’s speech was part loving tribute, part roast, and everyone ate it up….

Though none more so than big brother, Paul!

Ready to get rowdy….friends enjoying themselves on the dance floor.

And bridesmaid Catherine tore it up best with this awe-inspiring split that her friends were definitely digging….

A little Photo Booth fun….

Our newlyweds….ready to start this next happy chapter in their lives together.

Holly & Paul, thank you both so very much for inviting us to share in this wonderful day with you, your families and super sweet friends!! Getting to be there to document all of the beautiful details, the super fun celebration and most especially the inspiring love you both have for each other and those closest to you was such a treat!! We adore you and hope these photos (and the MANY more soon to follow) serve as happy reminders for many, many long, love-filled years to come!!

With big love & hugs, Christine & Andy xoxoxo

PS…We’d also like to give a special shout out to wedding planner extraordinaire Allison Liset and her incredible team (Sheri, Megan & Kim)at Elegant Engagements, who saved the day by running out to Macy’s to buy a suit for Holly’s brother Paul, because his didn’t make it. Don’t ask! You ladies rocked it and kept things running smoothly all day!! Love working with you all! xoxo

Kelly & Bryan’s Black Rock Country Club Wedding ~ Hingham Wedding Photographers

Our last wedding of the season could not have ended on a happier note than it did getting to be a part of Kelly & Bryan’s wonderful, love-filled celebration at the beautiful Black Rock Country Club in Hingham.

We had been looking forward to seeing Kelly & Bryan  say, “I do!” for quite a while, since we first met them at the wedding of Kelly’s very sweet cousin, Cara. We photographed Cara & Brendan’s Martha’s Vineyard wedding last year and fell head over heels for the whole family! And, when Kelly & Bryan told us they were engaged, we just knew we were in for another sweet treat with this pair, whose love & affection for one another runs deep and is easy to see!

All of this was confirmed when we photographed their engagement session earlier this summer in Sandwich.

But, the love could not have burned brighter than it did at their wedding a few weeks ago (okay, it’s been several weeks now….thank you K&B for your patience as we fell a bit behind this year….you guys rock!!).  It truly was a spectacular day and everyone (including me & Andy) had a fabulous time.

So….without further ado…..here’s a few of our favorite moments & details from Kelly & Bryan’s day of love!

LOOOOOVE Kel’s crazy cute and sparkle-liciously fabulous Kate Spade shoes. And, love her & Bryan’s beautiful commitment jewelery.

Kelly had these super sweet oxford shirts made for her and her girls to lounge in the morning of the wedding. Her shirt had a particularly cute touch! Love it!! And, love her BEAUTIFUL invites by Bella Figura. Letterpress & stylish calligraphy makes me swoon!

Our beautiful bride Kelly, gets a helping hand getting into her stunning gown from her crazy sweet momma, Dawn (love her!!) and one of her besties, her sister-in-law and MOH, Kristin. Isn’t Kelly gorgeous? And, that smile….lights up every room she enters!

Meanwhile, our handsome groom, Bryan, awaits the arrival of his soon-to-be Mrs.

Getting a look…..love this moment as brides see themselves all put together for the first time. You know how suddenly it hits you?….”This is really happening!” It’s so exciting and joyful and a little nerve-wracking in the best kind of way! (PS…love the look on Kel’s friend Nicole’s face as she catches a glimpse of her bestie….so sweet!)

Bryan and his brothers, P.J. and Andrew. Such sweet guys!

Bryan excitedly awaits seeing Kelly for the first time. Here she comes….

Loooooove Kelly’s expression as she locks eyes with Bryan for the first time. Happy tears….is there anything better? Maybe just the passionate embrace & love-filled kiss that follows!

Are they ready for this? Ummmmm…I’d say without a doubt, yes!

Love these two together….just so wonderful. Such love & devotion, and a kindness that is at once inspiring and simply beautiful to behold.

Kelly smiles with her entire being….especially when her gaze is cast on Bryan. And, seeing it happen is wonderfully infectious!

Kisses & cuddles and moments like this….just wonderful.

The look of love…..this is IT!

Stunning! And, so is Kelly’s beautiful bouquet by Jen Cahill at The Tangled Web.

To the rock that made Black Rock famous, for a few quite moments alone before the ceremony….

Hello beauties…

Dawn and Kelly’s brother, Billy, make their way to the ceremony….just love this sweet moment/exchange between mother & son on their daughter/sister’s big day! Sweetness overload!

Here comes our gorgeous bride and her proud papa, Bill. Nerves, excitement and love all rolled into one fleeting moment.

Love is this……when you look into the eyes of the person who holds your heart in their gentle embrace and you just know, beyond any doubt, that THIS is where you and your heart are meant to be….forever!

Watching Kelly  & Bryan recite their vows was so moving. I felt much as sweet Cara (center) did.

And with a kiss, a promise of love is forever sealed.

And, suddenly…..breath returns with joyful exhalation.

They did it!!! Wooooo hoooo! Now, let’s get this party started!

Lovin’ the sheer drapery & new chandelier. That wasn’t there the last time we were at Black Rock. It gave such an airy sophistication to the room and helped with bouncing flash (photographers will appreciate this). Also loved the gold chiavari chairs and beautiful floral arrangements by Tangled Web….stunning!

The cake by Veronica’s Sweetcakes in Marshfield was  perfection.

Kelly’s cousin, Joey, has a playful exchange with a guest on the lawn below cocktail hour. I don’t know why I like this photo so much, but I do. I just love photos that capture people unprompted and in moments unrehearsed.

Bryan chats with friends during cocktail hour.

Kelly’s niece, Emma, had everyone at the wedding wrapped around her precious little finger…including her cousin, Davin, who is quite the charmer himself! Meanwhile, wedding guests enjoy cocktail and good conversation.

These girls were having so much fun all day/night. Loved watching and photographing them.

Our happy couple during their first dance….smiles so big they lit up the room!

Kelly is one of the kindest, most loving, sincere, sweet, generous, delightful people and watching her as she listened to her sweet Dad sing her and Bryan’s praises was precious in every way!!! And, can we talk about Bryan’s sweet, humble face as he takes in the moment. LOVE these two!!

MOH Kristin also gave a moving speech that raised glasses high!

Daddy’s dance…one of my favorite moments of every wedding!

Raisin’ the roof….you go ladies!

Killin’ it, Kel!!!

I really wish Andy & I got invited to more weddings as guests because dancin’ with my honey is one of my favorite things to do…watching other honeys get down on it ain’t so bad either!

Who can guess what song was specially requested for this VERY HAPPY flower girl? I’ll give you a  hint…..Emma really ‘Let It Go’ big for this one!!! Much to the delight of EVERYONE in the room!

A perfect ending to a perfect day….and the beginning of a beautiful new chapter for two extraordinary people! Andy & I were soooo happy to have been a part of it!!

We’d like to extend a heart-felt thank you to Kim C. and all of the fabulous staff at the Black Rock Country Club for being so accommodating and generally wonderful to work with. Thank you too to Bill & Dawn for entrusting us with documenting your daughter’s special day, but most especially for just being the wonderful, warm, welcoming, fabulous people you are! We loved getting to share another happy milestone with your amazing family. And, thank you too to Bryan’s wonderful parents, Lauren, Paul & Greg, for also being so great to us! You all are very lucky to have so much love in your lives!! A special shout out too, to our sweet Cara for being such a huge Bello cheerleader!! Honestly, wish we could put you, Bren & Coops in our pockets and carry you around everywhere with us! But, the biggest thanks go to Kelly & Bryan for opening your hearts to us in such a beautiful way, for sharing one of the most significant and intimate days in your lives with us in such an honest way! We love you both as individuals and together….well, ain’t nothing going to stop you two!! Thank you for inspiring us with your boundless love for each other, for life and for those closest to you! We hope these photos serve as beautiful reminders of that love and of the wonderful memories made this beautiful day! With big love & hugs, Christine & Andy xoxoxo