Emily & Kaegan: An Intimate Wedding in Thornbury

You may remember photographs from Emily and Kaegan’s engagement session last year when I met them in New York for an early morning engagement shoot around their East Village neighborhood.  Fast forward a few months and I was driving back country dirt roads to meet them at an estate up in the hills of Thornbury for their intimate fall farm wedding. 

            It was one of those gorgeous days where dark purple storm clouds threatened the hills, but continually rolled through to reveal patches of sunlight.  It was warm enough for an outdoor ceremony and cocktail hour, while the reception moved into a beautifully rebuild barn complete with harvest tables, Turkish rugs, twinkle lights, and various chandeliers hanging from the ceiling.  Just a barn with chandeliers, casual. 

            Emily met Kaegan and I at the farm, ready for their first look in one of my favourite gowns ever.  Kaegan described her later as an 80’s supermodel, and it’s completely true, she has absolutely stunning style, combined with Kaegan’s 1920’s French actor aesthetic you could say I was excited to photograph them again!

            My favourite moment of the day arrived when it was time to head outside for their sunset photographs.  We set off into a wheat field to shoot for a few minutes when Emily turned to me and said ‘want to go on an adventure?!?’ heck yes, yes I do, always.  She quickly slipped out of her pink suede shoes, handed them to Kaegan, and set off barefoot through the field towards the forest.  We trudged into the forest together, until finally arriving at large concrete cube sunk into the ravine.  Emily explained that there were a number of these hidden around the property, the result of one of Kaegan’s final architecture school projects where he mixed escarpment rock into cement, poured giant blocks of concrete, then returned them to the land they came from.  She mentioned this might be a meaningful wedding photograph, I.was.stoked.  By far the best part was when we trekked back out of the woods at dusk and Emily discovered that her dress was absolutely full of burrs.  As we started carefully picking them off she made sure we had plenty of photographs of the occasion, saying that this represented them more than anything.

            Future brides and grooms, if you ever want to ask me ‘want to go on an adventure?’ on your wedding day, please know that my answer is always, always, heck.yes.

            Scroll through for some photographs of the most awesome couple, a dog who steals the show, the cutest flower girls, a forest adventure in a wedding dress, and the coziest barn wedding in the fall I’ve ever attended.  I’m going to be in love with these photos of these two for a longggg time.

 Vendors:
Caterer: Bruce Wine Bar
Florals: Ashley Elaine Florals
Rentals: Four Seasons rentals
Dress: BHLDN
Bridesmaids:  H&M

xo
-c

Annie & Colin's Toronto Waterfront Wedding at The Henley Room

Annie and Colin just make my heart happy.  They hosted a wedding with fabulous unique and retro flair, at a gorgeous waterfront venue in Toronto, that was absolutely jam packed with as much good music, food, and dancing to Abba as anyone could possibly ask for.  For anyone who knows me personally, you’ll understand how much I adore these guys already.

            Annie wore one of my favourite dresses of all time, designed by the talented Gabby of Truvelle Bridal, a stunning bridal design line out of Vancouver.  She paired it with some seriously shit kicker heels, a romantic up do, and a smile that truly lit the room.  Colin is a musician, by trade and talent, so I was already pumped to see what they described as the ‘cabaret’ that would be taking place during their cocktail hour, hosted by a number of their musically talented guests from Colin’s various performances and choirs.  Guys, if you’re ever invited to a wedding with a ‘cabaret’ go.  Do it.

            By far the most memorable moment however took place during their waterfront ceremony on the docks of The Henley Room.  Colin’s choir was arranged to sing a number of pieces throughout the ceremony, but he surprised Annie shortly after saying their vows by walking over to the choir, who proceeded to sing backup for him as he serenaded her with a song about growing old together.  I’ve never seen an entire audience start to cry before at a wedding, I was absolutely sobbing behind my camera, and Annie, true to form, stood smiling as absolutely massively as her face would allow, enjoying the heck out of the entire experience.  Have I mentioned that I adore these two?

            The rest of the evening passed in a beautiful, twinkle lit reception of good food, a gorgeous cake made by one of Annie’s talented friends, a shoe game played by the bride and groom that had the room in stitches, and a night of dancing the time away to Abba.  If you already love Annie and Colin as much as I do, make sure you checkout their Beaches engagement session from earlier this year, and take a page from Annie’s book if you want to plan your wedding day to really feel like ‘you’!

Vendors:
Floral: Quince Flowers
Dress: Sash and Bustle , Truvelle
Venue: The Henley Room, Argonauts Rowing Club
Hair: McManus and Campbell

Danielle & Anthony: Record Shops, Coffee, and Tacos, a Collingwood Engagement

I get to photograph Danielle & Anthony’s wedding just outside of Toronto, in Kleinburg in just a few weeks, so I thought it was a fitting time to share photos from the amazing engagement session we shot together a year ago! These two have spent so much time together at their family cottage up around Collingwood that they wanted to plan an engagement session exploring the area and enjoying some of their favourite things together. 

            These two knocked their engagement session out of the park, and planned the perfect combination of activities to shake things up, add variety, and really enjoy their time together.  I always recommend that people plan engagement sessions like their ideal date day together (with me tagging along as third wheel), and let me tell you, these two have amazing date days together!

            We started out meeting at Mad Dog coffee in Collingwood, a coffee shop/old time rock and roll record and paraphernalia shop.  We sipped dark coffee while browsing their favourite records, admired old Pink Floyd posters that cover the walls, and chatted music shows.  Next up was lattes in the sun at one of Collingwood’s best coffee shops, the Espresso Post, followed by a delicious dinner of tacos and nachos at the most fun, stylish, and trendy spot in town, Bent Taco. 

            To finish up, as the sun was getting low in the sky we drove over the Sunset Point, a beautiful shale beach with crystal clear water where they enjoyed exploring the shore line together, and dipping their toes in the cool Georgian Bay water.  Whether you’re taking engagement photographs or not, I recommend your next trip to Collingwood follow the same plan as these two, like I said, they nailed it.  

Best of 2018 Weddings

From Toronto, to Collingwood, to Muskoka, Perth, and even Barbados, this past 2018 wedding season was one for the books here at CFP. This was my third wedding season since launching the business back in 2016, and finally felt like I found my groove, managed to create a much healthier work/life balance, booked as much work as I could have possibly asked for, and was able to expand in ways I never imagined would by possible by year three. I could not feel more fortunate for the opportunity to work with so many amazing couples throughout the year, and finishing off strong with some beautiful winter weddings has left me inspired, excited, and chomping at the bit for my 2019 wedding season to start!

So, without further ado (this post is already a month and a half late after all), I will let you get to scrolling to take a look at my favorite moments of this past 2018 wedding season. Some will speak for themselves, many may not make sense, but all of them carry a little bit of my heart and make me so excited to see what year four will hold.

Christine and Spencer Get Married in the Tropics......I mean.........Collingwood

Oh man, here comes the hard part, how do I even begin to describe how incredible Christine & Spencer’s wedding was?  I’ll let the photos do most of the talking here, but have to tell you at least a little bit about how much fun these two managed to pack into one big day together!

Christine and Spencer were married in the backyard of Christine’s family home, looking out over the Collingwood waterfront from a clear tent canopy, and outdoor dance floor lit with string lights under the stars.  Christine went with the most fun and summery tropical theme for the day, complete with bright tropical flowers in the bouquets and a spectacular off the shoulder dress from Australian designer Grace Loves Lace.  Complete with her tan and Tom Cruise look alike hubby, their guests were transported from the Collingwood waterfront to a sunny California wedding!

From the get-go it was clear that everyone was there to have a good time, and Christine and Spencer created the perfect atmosphere to spend a picturesque day focused on family, friends, and food.  Everything else fell into place beautifully, but it was truly the smiles, laughter, and hugs that filled the day that captured my heart!

All mushiness aside, highlights from the day include their excited first look in a mossy forest glade with the dappled sunlight filtering through, a round tropical ceremony arch framing the iconic Collingwood escarpment in the background, a sunset to end all sunsets during dinner, and a flower girl who kept us smiling all day long.

I truly can’t find the words to describe all the beauty and happiness folded into one day.  Christine and Spencer, you both bring smiles to everyone around you, value the good things in life, and made it SO much freeking fun to work with you!

Xo
-c

Vendors:
Video: community visuals
Officiant: joy officiates
Makeup: Megan Forrest Esthetics, Makeup by Lee
Hair: Ainsley Garbutt Hair
Catering: Culinary Designs Catering
Flowers: Simply Unique Flowers
Party Favours: Wilderness Soap Co 
Tent & Table, Linen & Cutlery Rentals: Party Happenings
Ghost Chairs: FOS Event Group
Dress Designer: Grace Loves Lace

Brownstones and Bagels, an East-Village New York Engagement Session.

I met Emily and Kaegan in New York for their urban engagement shoot, downtown in the East Village neighborhood where Kaegan was living at the time.  It could not have been a more perfect location for such a jet-setting, adventurous, and well-traveled couple.  Their love story began when they first met in university, completing their degrees in architecture, and they have since lived and worked all over the world, pursuing their careers as international architects. 

Throughout their relationship they’ve lived and worked, together and separately, from New York, to Japan, to North Bay, to Toronto, and beyond.  I was lucky to catch up with them early one morning outside of Kaegan’s flat in the East Village, when Emily and I both flew down for a visit.  They were game to get up ungodly early to spend some time exploring their neighborhood before everything got too busy (major brownie points for being so game guys!).  New York might be known as the city that never sleeps, but we didn’t run into too many people at 5:30 in the morning!  The next few hours were spent wandering classic brownstone-lined streets, visiting their favorite neighborhood haunts, and watching the city (and it’s many dog residents) come alive to start their day.   When we finally waved goodbye, they were off to get a bagel for breakfast, and Kaegan was musing about what kind of pizza he wanted to have later that day.  It could not have been any more classic New York. 

I first met Emily at The White Squirrel Coffee shop in Toronto, and knew we would get along right away when she told me she would be coming straight over from having brunch with friends.  I had no idea how awesome the two of them are together though until we started shooting together.  I should have known that they were going to be a tonne of fun by how game they were to arrange our early morning engagement session in New York, but I was still blown away by their creative and free spirited natures that came out to shine on their wedding day.  I’m still working on editing all of their wedding photographs from a few weekends ago, but I can’t wait to share photographs from our sunset session, you’re going to be so inspired by what down to earth and relaxed people they are, even tromping through the muddy woods on their wedding day!

Beth & Alex: A Sunny Engagement Shoot at their Georgian Bay Island Cottage

We spent an afternoon enjoying the warm summer breeze at Beth and Alex’s private family cottage on an island in Honey Harbour.

I first met Beth and Alex after work at Rooster Coffee in downtown Toronto, and instantly knew I wanted to work with them as soon as we started chatting dogs and cottages.  They have a friendly, laid back, Canadian-cottager vibe that carried through to all aspects of their relaxed and fun-loving engagement and wedding.   Alex is an avid outdoorsman, and Beth nurtures a secret talent for woodworking, learned from her grandfather and honed during summers at the cottage.  I could talk camping trips for hours, and am instantly awed by anyone with creative talent, so I couldn’t wait to spend time with these two over the course of our working together!

They invited me up to their family cottage to take their engagement photographs, tucked away in the islands of Honey Harbour. On a hot and sunny summer day, I was picked up in a little tin fishing boat at the nearby marina to start the afternoon. We cruised through sparkling waterways, past classic Canadian shield islands dotting the waters of Georgian Bay to reach their cottage. The family home was perched on top of a rocky island, and came complete with a welcoming crew of family and dogs.  These two clearly come by their friendly, happy natures honestly, how could you not when coming home to the cottage means being greeted on the dock by dogs, beer, and cookies!

I always ask couples to incorporate activities they love or places that are important to them into the engagement session, and Beth and Alex knocked it out of the park planning this shoot!  We started off across the island, fishing rods and beer in hand, heading to their favourite watering hole overlooking Giants Tomb across the bay.  The fish weren’t biting, but their pup, Brodie was happily occupied swimming after each cast, trying to catch the bait himself.  They enjoyed beers on the rocks, toes splashing in the warm water, took the tin boat out for a cruise, and finished by hiking through the island to a small wooden platform in the woods, furnished with Muskoka chairs, with a view over the bay.  This is where Alex proposed to Beth, surrounded by tea lights in wooden candle holders she had made that summer, smelling like pine trees, and with a view over the most meaningful place in the world to them. It’s so much fun to visit the spot where a couple got engaged and spend some time reminiscing together!

We had the best time taking their engagement photographs together, and I can’t wait to show you details from their relaxed and heartfelt wedding I photographed in Toronto this summer!l

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Abby & Matt: A Modern Rooftop Wedding at Toronto's Lavelle Restaurant

A Modern Toronto Rooftop Wedding with the Perfect Classic Touch 

Abby and Matt were married at Lavelle Restaurant.  Perched on top of the city, with long elegant swimming pools, and bright blue cabanas lining the deck, this new wedding venue restaurant has 360 degree views of Toronto, and you can see the CN tower from almost any angle.  The food is fantastic, the décor is so much fun to photograph, and the mixed indoor/outdoor space is perfect for summer weddings!  Abby and Matt thought the restaurant suited them perfectly on their hunt for a great wedding venue, so theirs was the first wedding ever held up on this gorgeous rooftop. I’m so excited to see what other events are hosted here in the future!  I also can’t wait for you to see some of the sunset photographs we took together from the rooftop. The sky turned a beautiful salmon colour all around, lights began to come on across the city, and the CN tower stood tall the background.  Toronto has the best rooftops for sunset photographs!

Working with an awesome new Toronto event planning team, ‘Riley and Dallas’, Abby and Matt created the perfectly stylish and fashionable Toronto urban wedding.  The trendy and modern décor of the venue (picture Miami beach meets Toronto skyline) contrasted perfectly with the more classic and elegant wedding touches they added, including classic white and green floral arrangements that spiralled up the pillars of the chuppah, and long harvest tables decorated with fluffy floral centerpieces and calligraphy cards.  They had both a modern dancefloor made of clear plexiglass covering one of the pools (awesome), and a nostalgic vintage cake topper that made it’s first appearance at their grandparents’ wedding! They truly spanned the best of both worlds designing a wedding that was so perfectly classic and modern at the same time.

The venue normally operates as a restaurant, so the food was spectacular, arriving on loaded family-style sharing platters as the sun set over the city, turning everything in the restaurant to gold.  Champagne flowed all through the evening, and Abby and Matt were the perfect hosts, visiting tables and making sure that, above all else, everyone was having a great time.

Personally, my favourite moment of the day was their first look.  I can’t wait for you to see the incredible excitement on both of their faces getting to see one another!  Their happy, wiggly, doodle puppy arrived shortly after to join the photographs, and was just as excited as they were about his own furry first look. 

The amount of individual style included in this wedding is inspiring.  Take a scroll through to see Abby’s gorgeous long gown, and the pop of red incorporated into the groomsmen’s shoes and jackets, reminiscent of something straight out of a film noire cast.  I could have spent twice as long taking photographs of their fashionable guests just to remember all the amazing outfits!

Truly though, as you scroll through this gallery you’ll be struck by only one thing, the immense happiness of Abby and Matt to be together.  From their joyful first look moment, to a beautiful Jewish ceremony under a windswept chuppah where they both couldn’t stop smiling, to the dance floor at the end of the night where they danced the night away under a gorgeous cityscape lit up all across the horizon, these two are perfectly and joyously happy. Plus, their cake cutting photographs are some of my favorite yet, they had so much fun with this iconic wedding day moment!

Shout out to the awesome vendors who worked on creating this wedding together!

Planners: Riley & Dallas
Flowers: Fuscia Designs
Table & chair rentals: Gervais Rentals
Linens: Simply Beautiful Décor
Photo booth: MiMir photo
Veil: Jeffrey Bridal by Merike
Acoustic music: Jesse Gold
DJ: BelloSound
Plexi glass pool cover flooring: EventSing

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