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August 29, 2017

For August, the weather on their wedding day was surprisingly cool. I mean, it was still warm, but August is typically the hottest month of the year in Iowa and this year has been strangely cool in comparison. Kristen and the ladies were on the second floor in the church, in a room filled with cozy chairs, music playing through someone’s iPhone, and windows that looked out over the street below, filled with people enjoying Saturday’s nearby farmer’s market. Veritas Church in Cedar Rapids is very industrial and it made me so excited because I’ve been longing for a modern-industrial wedding location for years.

Chad & Kristen met in 2015 on a mission trip in South Carolina. At the end of the summer, they went their ways, her back to school at Iowa and he back to Minnesota, but it didn’t take long for him to make a trip to Iowa to see her. “We hadn’t seen each other for over a month since the mission trip had ended,” she said. “We had just been talking on the phone and FaceTiming so I was pretty nervous. When he got here, he got out of his car and gave me flowers and had this sweet video he had made for me right before he had left South Carolina the month before.” Chad added, “I asked her to be my girlfriend the second I got there.”

They dated long distance the remainder of that school year and then last summer, he moved to Iowa City to be closer to her. “I knew Chad was special since the day I met him. But it wasn’t until [last] summer that I for sure knew he was the one. He had just moved down to Iowa City and while the transition was a little shaky of being in the same place for the first time, there were just some moments that I was like, ‘Wow, he came all the way here just for me and I can’t imagine life without him.’ He is so selfless and caring and while I can’t pick out one definite moment of when I knew, it just kind of happened.”

Chad had known for a long time, perhaps giving him more reason to uproot his life and move to Iowa. “On my birthday about half a month [after meeting her], I wrote her a note about how I felt and that I knew she was the one.” He gave that note to her the day he proposed.

And their wedding day was filled with all the anticipation and joy of two people finally starting their lives together as husband and wife. Their ceremony was filled with their love for Jesus and their respect for each other. It was a beautiful start to their marriage and it was an honor to not only witness it, but document it for them.

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The commentary provided by Kristen’s sweet grandma’s was so fun to listen to as they reminisced about their own wedding days and the difference between then and now.
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The back of Kristen’s gown was so stunning and the dress fit her so perfectly!
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We went to a nearby park for photos and this was the first time that day Kristen and Chad saw each other. Their first look was so sweet and filled with the most tender, genuine moments.
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After their wedding at Veritas Church, we drove to the Celebration Farm for their reception.
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Kristen & Chad, I wish you all the blessings in the world as you begin your marriage. The wedding day was just the beginning–and what a beginning it was–and it only gets more wonderful and more meaningful from there.

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Photography: Emily Crall Photography

Florals: E’s Florals

Cupcakes: Scratch Cupcakery

Catering: Dostal Catering

DJ: Twisted Mics Music Entertainment

Makeup & Hair: Salon Voche 

Paper Suite: Wedding Paper Divas

Bridal Gown: Stella York from Bucci’s Bridal

Maids’ Gowns: David’s Bridal

Suits: Men’s Wearhouse

Ceremony Venue: Veritas Church

Reception Venue: The Celebration Farm, Timber Frame

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July 11, 2017

On the first day of July, the sun shone down brilliantly on the barns at Celebration Farm. Inside the Double Round, the reception details were being put in place, while inside the Timber Frame, the ladies were eating sandwiches and finishing up hair and makeup. Maddie was relaxed and calm, excited to see her groom.

Maddie & Matt had their first date back in February of 2014, having met a couple weeks before. “Matt first laid eyes on me when I was out for a friend’s birthday [in downtown Iowa City]. One of my friends started talking to one of his friends and she kept trying to set us up.” It wasn’t until later when both of their parties moved to another bar that she finally went over and sat next to him and started talking.

Their first date was 10 days later. “I was so impressed because Matt called me to set up our first date! In an era full of texting, this gesture was very meaningful to me. I was very nervous because I wasn’t sure if he would still like me, but I was hopeful because I knew we had so much in common,” she says. One of Matt’s coworkers, a mutual friend of mine, told me she takes credit for that phone call saying she encouraged him to call Maddie specifically for the reason that Maddie would most likely only be expecting a text.

So now, a little over 3 years later, they were married under the blue skies in the outdoor amphitheater. Congratulations, Maddie & Matt! I wish you a lifetime of true joy and happiness together!

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These earring studs were a gift from Maddie’s dad to her mom on their wedding day and now a gift from her mom to her on her own wedding day.
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Maddie’s stunning gown had no zipper so she had to shimmy into it (with lots of help) early in the morning before hair and makeup. If you look closely in some of the other photos, you can see the high illusion neckline, though it was nearly invisible to spot!
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Maddie & Matt exchanged gifts just prior to seeing each other for the first time. I loved seeing these sweet, calm moments in the day.
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Maddie and Matt chose a first look so they could do all of their photos beforehand. This is also a huge relief for anyone who gets nervous or anxious about walking down the aisle with everyone watching (that was me on our wedding day!). Seeing each other breaks all those nerves and helps you focus exactly on what your day is all about: your commitment.
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These beaming smiles!! <3
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Maddie, you are a vision!!!
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As I took this photo of Matt, Maddie was over to the side whistling. 🙂
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There were very few shaded areas for a large group, but we managed to find this spot close to the trees for the bridal party photos and I think it’s perfect!
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Cocktail hour was held in the Timber Frame barn and while that was happening…
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…we took a quick trip to the fire station for a couple of photos of Maddie & Matt with the fire truck. (Matt is an Iowa City firefighter!)
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They chose donuts in lieu of a cake!
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During the reception, I snuck them back outside for a few quick sunset photos. The light was stunning at this time of day and these photos are always some of my favorite, wedding after wedding.
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While back inside, the party continued!
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Photography: Emily Crall Photography

Wedding Coordinator: Town or Country Event Design & Coordination

Venue: The Celebration Farm

Videography: Kerschner Candids

Florals: Hy-Vee Wilson Avenue

Donuts: Hurts Donuts

Catering: Local Burrito

DJ: Ultimate Entertainment

Makeup: Lindsey Coblentz

Hair: Salon Aria

Paper Suite: Zephyr Weddings

Bridal Gown: Olvi from Panache Bridal

Maids’ Gowns: XOXO Bridal

Suits: Holley’s Shop for Men

Photo Booth: Weddings by Carue

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June 12, 2017

One of my favorite memories from Caitlin & Brad’s wedding is how happy everyone was despite being miserable in the humidity and heat that day. I rushed through photos faster than I ever had before (or since!) and we were all sweating from every pore in our bodies, but we made it…and the photos don’t show even a drop of sweat. 🙂

I always think a cooperative bridal party deserves way more props than they get. The bride and groom, of course, are going to weather the heat or rain or sun or whatever weather elements get thrown their way because it’s their wedding. But a bridal party who puts up with all of that as well gets credit. They get credit for showing up, smiling, and not complaining because they love their friends who are getting married.

We are in June and already hitting the high-90s with intense humidity so the next few months are going to prove challenging for many more bridal parties, but I am looking forward to meeting so many people who adore their friends more than the discomfort of summer weddings in Iowa.

Caitlin & Brad’s gorgeous wedding from last July is being featured today on Borrowed & Blue and it’s so much fun to look through some of my favorite images again!

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May 24, 2017

Last summer I had the honor of photographing Melanie & Dan’s wedding. It was such a unique celebration of marriage with their combination of traditional American and traditional Hindu ceremonies. Their wedding day was bursting with colors: bright pinks, citrus oranges, deep reds, and shimmering golds! It was a feast for the eyes. In the time since, their wedding has been featured four times (on Maharani Weddings, Baubles & Bowties, and The Big Fat Indian Wedding) and today on Borrowed & Blue.

This wedding day was such a wonderful collaboration of many talented artists and I’m so glad to not only work with such talent, but to see my clients being so well treated and loved by everyone they have chosen to work with. Enjoy another look back at this beautiful wedding day.

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