Our Wedding by KT Merry: Part One
Last year on May 12th I married my long time boyfriend Justin in a beautiful ceremony in Rosemary Beach, FL. I am now officially Mrs. Parra, which is so rad! I made the decision last summer to legally change my name, and I then decided to encompass all of my work into one website. I photograph more than weddings and decided that this would be the perfect opportunity to change my website and re-brand using my new last name. After all it’s forever baby! So I thought it would be fitting for my first blog post on the new site to be of my wedding images!
I’m so excited to finally be sharing this post with the world! I have waited over a year to do this post and I can’t believe it’s finally time! If you are in the wedding industry you already know that if you want your wedding images to be featured in a magazine or on a blog you have to wait to share them so as to give that particular medium exclusivity. Last fall we were completely thrilled when Style Me Pretty featured our wedding. We were then even more excited when Weddings Illustrated Magazine featured a few images as well. Since then a few other wonderful blogs shared our amazing photos, but now…it’s my turn! The best part is there are going to be images in my post that have never been seen before! I, being the bride, have got the inside scoop and funny stories behind certain images. First, I have to start off by thanking our INCREDIBLE photographer KT Merry and backdrops from katebackdrop and her husband Chad for our priceless and breathtaking images. There are truly no words to describe KT’s talent. She has inspired me as a photographer since I first met her in 2007 while working in Miami. She has been a friend, a mentor, and is hands down one of the best wedding photographers in the world!
So naturally I couldn’t fit all the images in just one post. With so many wonderful images to pick from I couldn’t choose, so I just picked them all!! In this first post I will cover the rehearsal, getting ready, bridal portraits, bridal party portraits and a few family shots. I previously spoke about Rosemary Beach in a past blog post and why I chose to have our wedding there. Check it out if you’d like to learn a little bit about this magical place. Lastly, before I get into the images I have to thank our family. Justin and I had the wedding of our dreams and it was all thanks to our amazing parents and the best sister in the world Miss Mallory Anne. From day one they supported our every decision, our every need and made it happen. It was truly a fairytale.
Here we go!
This was the day of our rehearsal. I was bringing gifts for the flower girl Lainy and ring bearers Tre and Eli to my parent’s cottage, Touchstone, which is where we had our rehearsal dinner. Justin met up with me on his bike and KT Merry just happened to be at Touchstone when we arrived:)
This was later that evening at the rehearsal on the Eastern Green.
This is the courtyard at Touchstone Cottage. Our wonderful florist made the magnolia leaf wreaths for the front doors. My amazing bridesmaid (and Justin’s cousin) Miranda surprised us by coordinating with our florist to provide these beautiful flower arrangements for the center of the tables. I totally cried when I saw them! We had a wonderful catered dinner outside listening to the courtyard fountain and eating pie baked by our very own baker lady Miss Teeny! Bacon Bourbon and Tiramisu being some of the favorites!
I got this idea off of a blog and thought it was such a cute idea. It ended up being a big hit with everyone, people loved all the funny kid pictures. A tip to other brides: bring framed images of people or animals that can’t be there for your big day. It helps personalize the space you will be staying in and it will make you smile every time you look at them:)
This was the welcome bag that greeted all of our guests filled with beach toys, local goodies to snack on, information on Rosemary and the surrounding areas, water bottles and for those who were in the bridal party an Itinerary. I found a wonderful gal on Etsy that designs these totes based on your love story! It started with how we met and ended at our wedding day…..so much fun! On the right is my adorable friend Blessing picking up her bag:)
Our beautiful invitation suite was designed by Rifle Paper Co. Those who know me well know that I am obsessed with everything Rifle! So naturally they were my first choice when it came to designing invites. They customized the design to correspond with our wedding colors, and with Justin’s approval I went as girly as I wanted! I will love it forever! I found some vintage magnolia stamps and a beautiful sailboat stamp that reminded me of the place where Justin and I got engaged, and my mom addressed them for me with her beautiful handwriting.
Our sweet puppy Charlie couldn’t make the trip down to Florida from Seattle for the wedding so we made a point to include him in little touches throughout our big day. We took our engagement photos with Charlie and had framed images of him in all the cottages and on the sign in table at the wedding. I also used an image I had taken of him as a little tag to go on our favors. My super talented cousin Meri made little round cookies with our initials on them and iced in pink and orange to match our wedding colors. They were super yummy!
My dress was by Ivy & Aster and it was a blush pink which I thought would look much better on my fair skin than white. It was so comfortable and I felt amazing in it! I got my shoes from Kate Spade (another favorite of mine) and chose flats because I wanted to be comfortable and Justin is only an inch or two taller than me….so I didn’t want to tower over him! Another tip for brides: You spend all this money and time picking your perfect dress, find a beautiful hanger to showcase your dress on for your wedding photos. Plastic hangers make every photographer cringe!
Below: I also got special hangers for all my girls dresses, and made tags with the girls names. I decided to go with a bun for my wedding day hair because every time I attempted to do anything else it just ended up looking like “prom” hair. Having it down isn’t a smart option in the southern humidity so I went with a bun. I wanted it a little loose and carefree looking, just classic and simple. I loved it and I will never regret my choice!
I found these beautiful Irish linen hankies in Victoria, BC while on vacation. They had bunches of lavender embroidered on them which in the wedding world is good luck;) I bought one for myself and for all of my bridesmaids and had each girl’s initials embroidered on them. I designed my rose gold necklace with the help of Green Lake Jewelery Works here in Seattle. I used my mother’s original engagement diamond and had a little heart charm added. My earrings were a gift from my parents from Swarovski. My sash is actually a jeweled belt that I had sewn onto a thick satin ribbon. I love that I got a little bling in without being too flashy and I was able to get the thick bow in the back that I really wanted.
The bridesmaid flowers were made of posies of astilbe, which I had seen another bride use and I thought they were the perfect size for a bridesmaid bouquet. I loved that they were different than the usual bridesmaid bouquet you typically see, and they were the perfect shade of pink to go with the girl’s deep navy dresses.
Below: This picture of my sister and I cracks me up every time because the face I am making is the face of absolute RELIEF! Moments before when we were zipping up my dress my zipper got stuck….every bride’s nightmare! No one could get it to budge when finally my amazing mother in law Gigi came to the rescue with the suggestion of vaseline. Sure enough a little vaseline on the zipper and seconds later it zipped right up! The whole room let out a huge sigh of relief….including me!
The thistle pin was a gift from my Dad representing our Scottish heritage and the wings belonged to my late Grandfather Grayson who was a helicopter pilot for the Army. He had passed away just a month before the wedding so I wanted something of his close to me the whole day so I could remember to be thankful for life and all the gifts love brings.
SWOON! That was my then husband to be getting ready in our honeymoon cottage. The man loves his shoes, so I knew his wedding shoes would be something special. He ordered Italian leather boots with wood soles all the way from Italy….they smelled incredible! Justin’s suit and tie was from JCrew.
Um yea, then this happened….crazy guys!
Being a wedding photographer myself I knew the advantages of having a first look. We had a full hour and half to get all the bridal portraits we wanted then had another hour of bridal party and family portrait time. We got all the portraits out of the way before the ceremony even started which meant that we could just relax and enjoy the rest of the day! We didn’t feel rushed and enjoyed spending time together before we were surrounded by 100 + people. Plus I loved the idea of having a very private and romantic first glimpse of my groom. It was a nice reminder that the day was just about him and I.
These beach shots were actually taken during the reception. People were eating dinner and we slipped away to take a few beach shots. KT and Chad had the brilliant idea to bring a bike down to the beach. Biking is a huge part of the Rosemary Beach culture and the images are some of our favorites! Also after the ceremony I took off my These kiddos where so darn funny! They kept us giggling all day long:) They didn’t want to smile at first, but warmed up as the day progressed. Lainy is wearing a dress, shoes and headband from baby Gap and the boys are wearing tan and white seersucker suits. They all had a dressy yet beach wedding vibe. I didn’t want them to get too hot either.
The shot below cracks me up! Poor Tre was in desperate need of a potty break and Eli, bless his heart, he was so confused! Overall the kids were so great, they kept us smiling all day and were so well behaved!
I had a squeal moment over how cute the little pom poms on Lainy’s shoes were….I mean they were just so darn precious!
My wonderful family and a great shot of me and my Dadda:)
Below: Justin’s mom Gigi and his Grandmother Maria, and a lovely shot of Justin and his mom:)
How cute is my Dad! We rented a golf cart for the big day to cart us around so we didn’t have to walk too much and get all sweaty. Thankfully in May the humidity isn’t too bad! Finally we piled in the golf cart to head to the ceremony!
Stay tuned for part 2 which will include the ceremony and the reception.