You know when you meet someone, and you just click?
That was how I felt when Chantelle + Joe first messaged me.
These two were in a pickle as the photographer they had originally planned on having for their wedding dropped out a month or so before the big day. They found me, sent me a message and, luckily, I still had their wedding date available!
Their wedding was larger than an intimate wedding and, whilst I specialize in documenting elopements and intimate weddings, I do actually take on a handful of larger weddings each year! I was more than happy to be flexible with them and decided to help them out because I wanted to make sure they had a wedding photographer on their big day! I swear, things like this happen for a reason, because it was SUCH a lovely time!
Chantelle + Joe are seriously the sweetest couple. They both had children of their own, and this wedding really symbolized their two families becoming one and creating their own happily ever after kind of moment.
Their day was emotional, hilarious, and filled with so much freaking love. Everything about their wedding day was truly about them and their families, and it was so lovely to see. Getting ready with Chantelle and her gals was hysterical! They were such a funny bunch, and it honestly felt like I was an honorary member of their family for the day, which Chantelle and I joke about even now :)
Chantelle + Joe held their coastal wedding in Plymouth, MA at the Hotel 1620, which was a gorgeous hotel across the street from the ocean pretty much. They originally were supposed to have the wedding outside next to the beach, but decided about an hour before the ceremony to play it safe and move the ceremony inside into one of the rooms in the hotel. Chantelle + Joe were bummed, understandably, yet remained cheery. Honestly, their focus at that point was to just do the dang thing! They were both anxiously waiting to see each other.
Chantelle wanted a first look, just not with Joe. She decided to do a first look with her adult son, which was super sweet and emotional for both of them. Shortly after the first look, we got everyone ready for the ceremony! It was dark and moody, which was quite the change from their originally scheduled idea, but it felt cozy and intimate, which is exactly what they were going for, so it all worked out in the end.
Once Chantelle + Joe said 'I do,' and sealed the deal with a kiss, they embraced and greeted everyone who came out to celebrate their special, long-awaited day. That may have been my favorite moment of the day. It was slightly chaotic but in the best way, like swarms of people hugging the couple and whispering sweet mentions of congratulations in their ears. It was right next to where cocktail hour was taking place as well, and it demonstrated, yet again, how the focus of their day was on them, their love, and getting to celebrate it all with their favorite people.
Once most everyone had been greeted, I snuck the couple + their wedding party away so we could catch a ride on a trolley and head over to a scenic area next to the ocean for formal photos! We lucked out because the rain had let up and, although it was a little chilly, everyone had high spirits for their portraits. And dang, they had a big wedding party that was so hilarious. Seriously, I was laughing so hard the whole time because they were all goofing around and having a blast together. In a moment that feels oddly soooo structured in a wedding day, it was so refreshing to see everyone genuinely enjoying their time together, and being good sports when I requested that we get one photo of everyone smiling at the camera.
The real magic happened when I just had Chantelle + Joe in front of the lens because their entire wedding party opted to stay outside and be their ultimate hype squad, rather than heading back onto the trolley to warm up. Chantelle + Joe were laughing, and their whole wedding party was helping them stay light and loose during the photos. This lead to really natural photos that I added a little magic to with a prism to level them up a tad. It was truly such a fun time.
Once we finished up, everyone was pretty excited to warm up again, and I think we all knew the perfect way to do so was to get some food in them, and to get the dance floor going asap!
After everyone ate, some folks stood up to say a few words. Joe's father had passed away recently and wasn't able to be at their wedding, so many of the speeches paid tribute to him, and passed on the words to the couple that they imagined Joe's dad might have said. It was emotional, beautiful, and dang, I had everything I could do not to sob through all the speeches if I'm being honest. The dance floor was needed afterwards and EVERYONE was ready to bust a move! No seriously, I'm pretty sure I saw everyone get on the dance floor at least once, which believe me, does not happen at every wedding!
Overall, Chantelle + Joe's day was so special. It was fun-loving and heart warming, and it will be a day I always remember. So thankful the stars aligned for us to work together so that I could document their big day.
Thanks so much for reading the story of their wedding day!
The Francis Frames