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May 8, 2018

It was the most glorious day for their wedding. The sun was bright and the air was crisp without being cold. Lindsay and her ladies were getting hair and makeup done in the bridal suite at Bella Sala, while the guys relaxed in the reception hall. The waterfall outside splashed water down over the rocks, gurgling along the tiny little stream. At long last, it was their wedding day! And it was perfect.

Bella_Sala_Wedding_EmilyCrall_Photo_1169.jpgGideon surprised Lindsay with his proposal right before their one year anniversary in 2016. “We planned a trip to Des Moines the weekend before our anniversary to celebrate. We made reservations at a fancy Italian restaurant and before that, Gideon wanted to show me Gray’s Lake. He wouldn’t tell me where we were going and it made me so frustrated! It was freezing that night and me eyes were watering, my nose was running, and I wondered why in the heck he’d chosen that night of all nights to show me this lake. I was ruining his special plans by complaining. While we were walking, I realized he wasn’t standing next to me anymore. When I turned around, I saw him down on one knee. He asked me to marry him and I didn’t believe him! It felt so surreal! The bitter cold disappeared and all that I saw was him. Nothing else mattered. We kissed and hugged and then he looked at me and said, ‘So is that a yes?’ I then said yes a thousand times. To think I could have ruined such a beautiful night with my bad attitude.” Bella_Sala_Wedding_EmilyCrall_Photo_1170.jpg
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I asked what their dreams are for the future and Lindsay said, “To always be honest with one another. To always love and care for one another. To enjoy every trip, every milestone together. To have and raise beautiful, healthy, smart children of our own to love for the rest of our lives together.” I love that. I love seeing the special, beautiful bond they share.

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Bridal Gown: Morilee from XOXO Bridal
Maids’ Gowns & Men’s Suits: XOXO Bridal
Venue: Bella Sala

June 9, 2015

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The thing that stuck out to me the most from their engagement session last summer was their chemistry. It’s not in-your-face and steamy like Hollywood would like to portray. It’s something so much deeper and richer. It’s quiet. It’s gentle. It’s intimate. It’s peaceful and comfortable. It’s real. And that, this is the most beautiful kind of love to photograph. I was so excited to photograph them again because working with a couple like Bethany and Zach is such a pleasure.

Their Bella Sala wedding was beautiful and fun, a day filled with so much joy. We started the day at the Newman Student Center where their ceremony was held. After the ceremony, we went to Kent Park for photos and then to Bella Sala where everyone celebrated for the rest of the evening.

Bethany & Zach, I hope you know how much I truly mean this: I loved being with you on your wedding day. You are an amazing couple and I am so excited to see how much you continue to grow together through the years!

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Bethany’s stunning bouquet (those colors!) had pieces of jewelry from her grandmothers in it and was wrapped around the stems with lace from her mother’s wedding dress.

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Ahh!! Bethany, you are so gorgeous!! Your smile radiates pure joy.

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One of my favorite parts of the day is in the evening when I get to sneak the couple out for a few minutes for some photos. The light is so golden and the photos are usually my favorite because you can sense the happiness and contentment in a couple. They are married, they have already been celebrating, and now they get a chance to breathe and soak it in before returning to the party.

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Photography: Emily Crall Photography
Ceremony Venue: Newman Catholic Student Center
Reception Venue: Bella Sala
Florals: Wolf Floral
Cake Artist: Barb Weever
Catering: Dostal Catering
DJ: Bam Productions
Makeup: Kristen Donahoe
Hair: Kaci at Zen Salon
Bridal Gown: XOXO Bridal
Maids’ Gowns: David’s Bridal
Suits: Men’s Wearhouse
Invitations & Paper Goods: Abby Smith
Priest: Fr. Ed Fitzpatick
Musician: Joe Mattingly

September 15, 2014

Paige & Christopher’s gorgeous wedding day was so much fun! And before they flew back to California, we had one more photo shoot to make happen and it was, by far, one of my favorites!

Presenting Sergeant Christopher Prior and his beautiful wife, Paige, in this stunning military wedding day after session:

Military Wedding Shoot - PaigeChris © Emily Crall_0002.jpgWe experienced a plethora of weather systems during this one evening. First there were clouds and impending thunderstorms. Then, tornado winds. And somewhere in all of that, the sun came out brighter than ever. It kept me on my toes trying to keep them dry and safe as well as changing my camera settings constantly for the ever-changing light. The hard work that it took to bring these images together though makes me even more proud of them. I’ll photograph these two any day of the week.
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Immediately after this image, the wind tore this umbrella nearly apart. There’s a pretty great outtake of it.

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September 11, 2014

They’ve been together for years. But not just in normal years. They met back in their school days. They’ve been married almost 4 years and have made it through 3 deployments. Theirs is a relationship bonded and secured through closeness and distance, through happiness and pain. It was such an honor to celebrate their “big wedding” and vow renewal this past Saturday. Their wedding was held by the waterfall at Bella Sala and the day graced us with a cool breeze to offset the hot sun.

Paige & Christopher are based in California, but they call Iowa home. These two will be moving back to Iowa within the next year and I am so excited to have them nearby! Paige is also a photographer and it’s always fun to befriend others in the industry.

Come back next week for a special Day After session before they flew back to California.

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Paige & Chris opted for a First Look to give us plenty of time for photos before the ceremony.

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Photography: Emily Crall Photography
Venue: Bella Sala
Makeup: Lindsey of Electric Beach
Hair: Kailee of Hair by Kailee
Bridal Gown: Allure from Heart to Heart Bridal
Bridesmaid Gowns: Alfred Angelo from XOXO Bridal
Florals: Pleasant Valley
Cake Artist: A Koch’s Cakes
Catering & Linens: Dostal Catering
DJ & Uplighting: Livewire Entertainment
Paper Suite: Remember November Shop

July 9, 2014

letter-it‘s clear that their love for each other includes a healthy dose of respect and care. They share a genuine connection and understanding that is so beautiful to witness. With all of the July 4th festivities happening around the country, these two wrapped themselves close with their friends and families to celebrate the start of this new phase of their relationship.

While the ceremony was held at Bella Sala, we actually started the day in the ladies’ suite at the Clarion before heading to Kent Park for photos, which happened to be where we had done their engagement session as well.

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