It was always her favorite time of year, since she was a little girl. As soon as she sees the lights on the trees and snow on the ground her excitement would grow. Because she knew what was coming. It was what she had waited for all year. No, not the presents under the tree (but you have to admit they are a nice bonus), that wasn't the best part. She was looking forward to having all of the family coming together - laughing and talking around the table during dinner, catching up, telling stories and really paying attention to one another - something that sometimes seems to get lost in the hustle and bustle of the rest of the year. And that's exactly why she loved Christmastime so much. Because it feels completely separate the rest of year. It's a time when the stresses and obligations of everyday life seemed to be put pause so you can remember the people that mean the most to you and show them just how much you care about them.
Which is exactly what he did a year ago. He took her to the one place he could find that seemed to have the most lights he'd ever seen, got down on one knee and told her just about much she means to him. And asked her for the best present he could have ever gotten - for her to be his wife. She would have said yes no matter what, she's clearly crazy about him but knowing that he had specifically asked her during her favorite time of year and scouted out the perfect place to do it made her fall in love with him that much more right in that very moment. And when it came time to set a date for the big day, they didn't have to think very long about when it would be - the choice was obvious.
So this year she was even more excited when there started to be snow on the ground and lights on the trees. More than ever before she couldn't wait for the holiday season to arrive because she knew that just two weeks before Christmas, all of her family would gather around for dinner, laughing and joking, telling stories, dancing, and enjoying getting together to celebrate yet another joyous occasion - their marriage. And this year she didn't even think about any presents under the tree because she already received the best present she could have ever asked for - a loving husband and now not one but two families to gather together for the holidays. No doubt it will always be her favorite time of the year.
ALLISON & ERIC
We started the morning at Allison's parents house where the abundant decorations and light blanket of snow on the ground outside really set the mood for the rest of the day. As Allison and her girls were finishing up having their hair and make-up done by Angela and Janice from Naomi Martinez Salon in West Hartford, we took a few minutes to grab some fun candid shots of them. We really enjoy capturing the energy of those moments especially since they tend to go by so fast and seeing them later really brings you right back to how you were feeling at that moment as the ceremony time was drawing closer.
We then heading outside to photograph Allison's custom Modern Trosseau gown that she got from The White Dress by the Shore in Clinton (where she also got all of her accessories, fur wrap included - check it out below). We couldn't resist bringing the beautiful dress outside to photograh it with the snowy backdrop and Allison was totally up for letting us bring it wherever we thought was best - which of course we loved! It wasn't long after we brought it back inside that it was time for Allison to put it on and head over to St. Paul's Church in Glastonbury for the ceremony. The church was especially significant since it happened to be the very same place where her parents got married.
Since Allison & Eric scheduled tons of time in between the ceremony & reception, we had the opportunity to head over to Hartford City Hall for shots of the two of them and the bridal party. City Hall is beautiful anytime of year but it was especially stunning decked out in the holiday decorations - exactly what Allison had been looking for. After a brief stop over to grab some shots in the city lights in downtown Hartford we headed over to the Riverview in Simsbury for the reception where Allison & Eric tied in inspiration of the day in so many fun and unique ways. From the band playing instrumental Christmas songs during the cocktail hour, passed trays of eggnog and hot coco, creating their own a signature white creamy cocktail - even the cake looked like a stack of wrapped presents! They had thought of everything.
And with one look around the room you could see that Allison & Eric had achieved exactly what they had hoped for their day - all of their family and friends gathered together, laughing, talking, stepping away from everyday life and remembering what's really important - one another.
When we saw this tree and the winter blue sky behind it, we just had to take Allison's dress outside to show it off. After all Allison really loves this time of year and it seemed only fitting to get a dress photo outside among the winter backdrop.
Allison's gorgeous bouquet was made of white roses and and pearl details, perfect for her winter wedding.
We absolutely loved the antique feel of the bridesmaid's flowers, so beautiful and timeless.
Allison got ready at her parent's house which was decked out with Christmas decorations just about everywhere you looked.
Allison's mom helped put her wonderful cathedral length veil on...
Right before leaving for the church Allison braved the cold for a couple of quick bridals.
Allison & Eric's ceremony was held at Saint Paul's Church in Glastonbury which just happened to be the same church that Allison's parents got married in.
Kathleen stayed in the back to catch Allison arriving and entering the church...
...as I caught all of the action going on up front. Eric was so relaxed and just ready to get married.
The flower girl and ring bearer confidently made their way down the aisle.
Allison paused and gave her Dad a smile before making her journey down the aisle to her soon-to-be husband. This is my view from the front...
...and this is Kathleen's view a moment later from the back.
It is always an emotional and sweet moment as the father of the bride hands off his daughter in marriage and this was certainly no exception as Allison's Dad handed her off.
It really must have been incredibly special for Allison to get married in the same church where her parents started it all years before.
The flower girl paid very close attention to every detail of the day, maybe even dreaming about her own wedding one day.
We love when a church has a balcony. It really gives us a great opportunity to capture the architecture and the feel of the church.
Allison & Eric's ring exchange and then first kiss as husband and wife!
I absolutely love this image. As the guys watched on during the ceremony, a ray of light came through one of the windows of the church and perfectly illuminated one of Allison's brothers.
They lit a unity candle.
After the ceremony we headed over to Hartford City Hall with both Allison & Eric as well as their wedding party.
For those of you who have never been to Hartford City Hall, it is a really great building, filled with sweeping staircases, balconies and a great atrium. It is such a fun place to shoot. Just keep scrolling to see how wonderful this building is. When we got there we started immediately with some shots of their full wedding party... first a relaxed formal shot...
...followed by something a little more fun. Check out how high that bridesmaid got with a little help of one of the groomsmen. So much fun! :)
After we spent some time with the wedding party we took Allison & Eric around the building for some shots of the two of them. These stairwells as really incredible.
Equally as incredible as the balconies over looking the atrium.
We really loved the way that the blue of the ceiling met with the stone architecture.
Allison & Eric looked really great and of course we had to show them off a little with some timeless formals.
This is one of my personal favorite images that we captured while we were here. There is just something about the ceiling and the light especially in black and white that I just love.
On our way back down to the main floor we paused to take advantage of the stairs one more time.
As we said earlier, Allison & Eric really love this time of year and really love Christmas so what is better than a huge poinsettia Christmas tree in the background of some of their wedding images.
They enjoyed a sweet kiss before heading out to their reception.
On our way to The Riverview for their reception, we stopped for a quick second to get a couple of photos in front of the holiday lights in downtown Hartford.
When we arrived at The Riverview we started by capturing some details of the room. It looked absolutely gorgeous with timeless touches throughout.
We really loved how they had photos of family member's weddings displayed as guests walked in. We also really loved the gold touches on their cake.
We thought this was a fun way to photograph their rings and what is even more fun is if you look close you might recognize a person or two in this photo! :)
Their wedding party surrounded them as they danced their first dance together as husband and wife.
As they finished their dance, Eric dipped Allison and gave her a kiss. This is my shot...
...and this is Kathleen's at the same moment.
The best man and maid of honor as well as Allison's Dad all made toasts...
...as Allison & Eric held hands and listened.
Pandemonium Band did a great job providing the musical entertainment for the evening.
Kathleen was so amazed that this band had a keytar player, you don't often see that! :)
Allison danced with her Dad and Eric danced with his Mom.
Allison & Eric - we had such a wonderful time capturing your wedding and spending the day with the both of you as well as your families. We hope to catch up with you again soon! ~Rob & Kathleen