A relaxed, romantic Virginia wedding, abounding in playful, southern charm (from the breathtaking Silverbrook Farm to evening entertainment from a bluegrass band) and a golden lab that will totally steal your heart…
Candace contacted me looking for a professional wedding photographer that she could completely trust with her wedding day. Several of her friends had worked with me in the past (Kristen & Aaron and Natalie & Brian to mention a few) and she knew that I would capture natural, unique, creative photographs that they could treasure for years.
Their colors were blush pink and sage green and their rustic, romantic theme was flawlessly executed.
Here are a few of the details that I captured in the morning while the girls finished their wedding day preparations at Silverbrook Farm. I loved that there were so many natural elements that I could incorporate to bring in that relaxed organic feeling that encompassed their day into the detail photos.
Candace wanted her bridesmaids to all feel comfortable and beautiful and had them each choose their own bridesmaids’ dress. Each bridesmaid chose a knee-length blush dress– they came together beautifully and were soft and romantic. Here they are hanging outside which even brings in more of that natural feel with the light and the blurred leaves in the foreground and background.
I photographed Candace’s reflection in an antique gold mirror as she put on her earrings. I like to capture unique perspectives and this gives the photo a dreamy, whimsical feeling that fit the wedding so well.
Candace and Travis started dating in high school. Over the past several years their families have become close. I liked how both Travis and Candace’s mom helped her with her wedding gown.
While we were inside, I still wanted the photograph to have an organic feel. I utilized natural window light and kept some flowers in the foreground and framed the scene in windowpanes. I also under-exposed the image a bit to draw attention to the lace of Candace’s dress as well as the floral crown in her hair.
Her maids of honor helped her to put on the finishing touches… wow, look at that train! Candace’s dress was from the TLC Botique in Frederick, Maryland.
Rooney!!! Rooney is Travis and Candace’s golden lab– he didn’t want to miss any of the wedding fun…
Yup a kiss on the chin, hahaha!
I can’t say enough positive words about Silverbrook Farm and its fabulous owner, Dottie. Every inch of the property is filled with rustic, vintage charm and beautifully bohemian antiques. It is absolutely stunning from the gardens and forest to the fields and farm house– everything is decorated with impeccable style and taste. Here Candace sits at an antique dressing table and touches up her lipstick.
It was time for their first look. I found a place that was quiet and secluded in the woods on a rustic bridge built over a winding stream.
Travis shared that he had been so anxious and nervous leading up to the moment, emotionally on edge, but the first look changed all of that.
Seeing his bride brought tears to his eyes. He kept telling her how beautiful she was and said that he felt like the luckiest man. Here he wipes away a tear…
Candace was teary, too. She said she was thinking about their journey to marriage and that looking at him she knew without a doubt that he was going to be the best husband.
He looked so handsome and in his eyes she could see that he felt the same way.
Travis said a prayer for their wedding day at that moment, which was so special to Candace.
I really like the lines in this photo– they almost lead your eyes from their faces down Candace’s train, up the tree trunk, down the foliage and back.
The ladies hair and make-up designs were created by Salon Element and were a very kind *gift* to the bride from salon owners, Thulyna & Vu. Thulyna and her teams’ work was incredible and speaks for itself, wow!!
Daniel Vaughn designs created Candace’s floral crown and the bridal bouquets. Travis had worked there when he attended Penn State University.
While I love capturing candid, emotional photos I also make sure to photograph more traditional portraits of the bride and groom as well. Such a sweet couple 🙂
Travis shared that he met Candace in high school– she was cute, funny and always smiling. He was impressed by her intelligence, crazy work ethic and the way that she cares for others.
He noted that while she can be serious and driven she also really knows how to have fun. He loves traveling with her and looks forward to all of the adventures that they will have together.
I think this next photograph illustrates Candace’s fun-loving personalty and beaming smile so well. Also, I love that they are in such a quirky setting, among lawn chess pieces in the garden– it suggests play. I framed them in the bow of a tree and love the natural feel of the chessboard with wood, stone and greens growing between the spaces.
Speaking of quirky, Candace and Travis had this sign made for them and hung it on the tree next to their wedding ceremony site. I thought silly faces were definitely in order…
A final kiss before separating for the ceremony. I love the misty blue of the Virginia mountains in the distance and the fences separating Silver brook from the neighboring farms.
Men gathered in the sitting room pre-ceremony. You can see the elegant couches and handsome stone fireplace in the background. Roony hid behind the couch chewing on a bone, hahaha.
It was the bone that Travis used to lure him down the aisle– they both wanted him to be a part of the wedding. What a fun moment…
Candace said she fell for Travis in high school because of his hysterical personality and his bright blue eyes. She added that he has the kindest heart.
You can see those vibrant blue eyes and that huge heart as he watched Candace walk towards him as her father escorted her down the aisle.
The photo is a little softer than my typical crisp, clear images, but I think it fits this soft, emotional moment well:
Candace and Travis wrote their own vows. They were personal and came straight from the heart.
The setting was spectacular beneath the bows of a huge tree under an arbor climbing with more clematis than I’ve ever seen, surrounded with their closest friends and family and the backdrop of the farm and Virginia mountains in the distance. Wow!!!
Dot officiated the ceremony and read from Taylor Mali’s “How Falling in Love is Like Owning a Dog.” Roony totally approved and stayed by their side throughout most of the service, almost seeming to smile approvingly at the couple and their wedding guests. 🙂
Husband and wife…
One of the things that struck me during the ceremony that I haven’t mentioned yet is Candace’s grandparents. They sat in the front row and held hands. It was a beautiful thing.
They have been married for 63 years and her grandmother is struggling with dementia. There is something so moving and beautiful about this image:
The bridal party was quite large– 18 members (including Rooney haha).
The soft foliage and relaxed feel in the frame garden provided the perfect setting for the light gray suits and vests and pale pinks gowns. So romantic…
There was a golden glow as Travis and Candace moved to the reception space following cocktail hour. I love the color of the mountains– just stunning!
Silverbrook farm is only an hour outside of DC near Leesburg, Washington couples, and the drive up is lovely ;).
The Silverbrook reception was awesome, and it was no ordinary barn. Look at the plaster in between the rafters the antique rugs and furniture, the shabby chic chairs. Everything is meticulously curated and lovely.
Mismatched china and wooden farm tables with burlap runners were used for dinner service. It added to the relaxed, country feel while giving a nod to natural and sophisticated elements as well. Dot provided the china.
The desserts were also eclectic and beautifully made. Here are just a few of the many cupcakes that were provided for wedding guests. Look how pretty these berries are! Job well done, Market Salamander!!!
There are even a few chandeliers throughout. I silhouetted Candace and Travis against this vibrant Toy-Story-blue sky along with one of the chandeliers in the barn.
The food was amazing and provided by Smokin’ Willy who set up smoke tents on the Silverbrook Farm property. They provided southern classics including pork barbeque, corn bread, mac and cheese and other southern “comfort foods.” They brought a ton of food and it was all eaten, people went up for seconds, maybe even thirds, haha!
Music was provided by the Naked Mountain Boys, a bluegrass band that opened the dancefloor with the classic “Man of Constant Sorrow” Yes that links to George Clooney in Oh Brother Where Art Thou ;). Candace said she chose them because she thought they woudl be a lot of fun and something unique that woudl be entertaining for everyone. She was right :).
I love working in spaces where I can shoot from an interesting perspective. Here I am up in the hayloft, haha!
We had one of the most epic sunsets that I have witnessed to date– it looked like the sky was on fire, I was waiting for Miss Scarlett to say, “After all, tomorrow is another day!” It would be so fitting :).
Candace and Travis your wedding was incredibly personal and unique. You are both amazing people and it was such a treat for me to spend the day at your side and exploring the gorgeous grounds of Silverbrook farm. I hope that viewing these photos allows you to live your wedding day for many many years to come!!!