Friday, September 23, 2011

Lauren + Mike's Grandview Wedding Preview

We were so excited for Lauren and Mike's wedding to arrive!  It wasn't just because they are so adorable and sweet and that after meeting with them, getting to know them and learning about all the plans for their day we were anxious to see it all come together.  It was also because we would be reunited with some friends we haven't worked with in a while, photographer Lori O'Toole and Stephanie and Jeff from The DJ Solution, and were super excited to be teamed up again.

We began the day with Lauren and Mike at Locust Grove as they had their First Look and Formal Photography with Lori O'Toole.  What a beautiful location for photos!  So many different areas to work with from the gardens and greenhouse to the home itself and the river view, there is so much to work with on this property that you could spend an entire day and not be done finding new and interesting spots. 

Lauren and Mike were like pros as they were getting their pictures done.  Having been out with Lori for their engagement photos, they felt at ease with the cameras on them and knew exactly what to do.  At one point, Lori said to them, "snuggle spontaneously", they laughed and then did just that!  Since they were up for having some fun with the shots, we had them walking and running around the grounds for us.  The skies were blue, the clouds were billowy and the lighting was perfect.  It all made for some really pretty shots and some great footage for their wedding film.  Please check out Lori's stunning photographs from their beautiful wedding.

Lauren could have put Aphrodite to shame.  She looked simply elegant in her chiffon dress by Maggie Sottero.  I'm a big fan of light weight dresses for a summer wedding and this dress was the perfect gown for a hot July day.  Chiffon looks great no matter what you do with it.  It drapes naturally, looks ethereal as you walk and when a breeze hits it, phenomenal.  What goes better with a beautiful and flowing chiffon gown than a pair of Jimmy Choo sandals?  Not to be outdone, Mike was handsomely dressed in a smart gray suit and tie, but the best part of his attire had to be the awesome green and aqua argyle socks!  So fun!! 

Being the first in their group of friends to get married, we weren't sure what to expect from their bridal party.  Most first timers just want to get to the party and have no interest in posing for pictures, but this group was quite the opposite, especially the guys. Totally unexpected.  They were all so much fun and absolutely willing, even going so far as to suggest what they could do for a picture!!  The boys kept asking us if they could do a shot with flair.  Lori and I weren't completely sure where they were going, but we're game for fun.  In the photos above, the lovely ladies on the porch and the guys on the lawn, with their flair (as requested).

Once we all had our fill of picture taking, it was time to get to The Grandview for their ceremony which took place on the patio overlooking the Hudson River.

Lauren's mom walked her down the isle as The Dorian Quartet played "Here Comes the Bride".  Father Rich Hasselbach performed the ceremony which was both sweet and entertaining.  At one point he made mention of the weather and said, "Thank you, Lord, for sending the cloud and the breeze".  It was a much needed break from the sun and just in time for their vows.  One of my favorite parts of their ceremony (besides the pronouncement, always my absolute favorite part) was their recessional.  Lauren and Mike walked out to the quartet playing "Ants Marching" by Dave Matthews Band.  Never heard it before on strings alone and it was quite unexpected and very impressive.  I love when couples add personal touches like that!

Here is a preview clip of Lauren + Mike's wedding.  I felt it appropriate to use DMB since they're big fans.  Hope you enjoy!
If you enjoyed this clip, please post a comment here on our blog and/or on our Facebook Page (don't forget to "like us" while you're there).

Cocktail hour began the moment guests left the ceremony patio and were greeted at door with several beverage choices.  The Grandview always does a fantastic job with service and getting the party started right away.  Another area they excel at is presentation.  Have a look at some of these stills.  Above is the seafood bar complete with fish ice sculpture and bottom lit ice table covered with Colossal Shrimp, Oyster Shooters, and Littleneck Clams.  My favorite; the Seafood Martini.  How pretty! 

The fruit at The Grandview always looks too pretty to eat, but is also so fresh and delicious.  I love that Lauren and Mike also included some good old comfort food at their cocktail hour, expertly dressed up for a wedding by The Grandview, of course.  How cute are those sliders and the mini mac and cheese plates?

The tables in the ballroom were adorned with one of two types of centerpieces by Flowers by David Anthony.  The table numbers were very personal; double sided, tri-fold frames with the table number in the center and a picture of Lauren on the left and Mike on the right.  Great idea!  My favorite picture had to be the very special one at the sweetheart table of the two family members who had to stay at home for the night. (Mason, on the right, makes a special appearance in their engagement photos by Lori O'Toole).

The amber glow of Lauren and Mike's reception, designed by Hourglass Lighting, was both beautiful and dramatic.  Uplighting completely changes the look of any ballroom.  I love when a reception space has more than just the ambient lighting.  Uplighting makes the room pop and makes everything in the room stand out more.  As you'll see in the stills above and below, uplighting creates depth and drama.  

By the end of the cocktail hour, everyone in the crowd was ready for a party and who better to deliver than Stephanie and Jeff from The DJ Solution.  Fresh from playing acoustic guitar during the cocktail hour, Jeff took his place at the controls as Stephanie got the crowd ready for the bridal party entrances.  Check out Stephanie's post about this wedding on her blog where she writes about how Lauren and Mike personalized their entrance.  I'll have to dedicate another post to the dancing at this wedding because stills just won't do it justice.  Everyone had so much fun and were all so full of energy all night long!

Who can resist pictures by the water?  Lori and I grabbed Lauren and Mike for a quick set of shots on the docks and sidewalk at the marina.  When we did the photo below, Lauren said that this was probably Mike's favorite part of the day so far because he got to just lie down and relax.  Sometimes you need to just have a short break away from the crowd just to be together on your wedding day and while you do it, why not have a few photos taken.  It does look very relaxing. 

One last surprise Lauren and Mike had for their guests was the Viennese Hour.  They stood behind a curtain and as it rose, music was playing and flames came up from the ice cream station.  Talk about drama!  That was only the beginning though.  Look at all the precious little treats below!  Heart shaped individual cakes, mini cupcakes and creme brulee just to start.

These sweet treats were yet another clever presentation by The Grandview.  Who can choose between fresh peaches (below on the left) and sweet desserts made to look like them (on the right)?  Fresh fruit tarts covered with powdered sugar and stuffed chocolate chip cookies, there really was something here for everyone no matter the level of your sweet tooth.

There were several stations set up including the ice cream sundae station, a coffee and dessert drinks station, the many tables of cakes, pastries and cookies, but probably the most fun was the chocolate fountain.  Most people would expect to see strawberries, bananas and marshmallows, but the Twinkies and Ring Dings were a surprise.  I'm positive that no one left this wedding hungry.

I'm sure there will be another post on this wedding since there was just too much to fit in this one (even if only to show off some of the dancing and reception fun).  Congratulations to Lauren and Mike for setting a high standard for the rest of their friends by pulling off a fabulous wedding!

The Production Team

The Wedding Location: The Grandview
The Picture Location: Locust Grove
The Flowers: Flowers by David Anthony
The Officiant:Father Rich Hasselbach 
The Photographer:  Lori O'Toole Photography
The Ceremony Musicians: The Dorian Quartet
The Officiant:  Father Rich Hasselbach
The Uplighting:  Hourglass Lighting
The DJ + MC:  The DJ Solution

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1 comment:

Mr. T said...

Excellent recap of the wedding. The bride and groom looked great. Can't wait to see the full video.