I don’t think I’ve ever gone into a wedding without having ever met or spoken to the bride or groom…but that’s what happened at Wendy and David’s Greenville Country Club wedding on April 29th! Wendy’s sister-in-law, who is also a photographer, contacted me for the couples’ wedding day and I’m so glad she did because it was an amazing event.
We arrived before the wedding party and were greeted by Paula from Paula and Dana Event Planning. She showed us around the clubhouse which is situated on one of the highest points in Delaware giving it breathtaking views. I couldn’t wait to photograph the couple with this amazing background. We then headed upstairs to where the girls would be getting ready and started shooting all the details. We started with Wendy’s Gabrielle’s dress and I feel in love! It was simple, yet elegant and the perfect shade of blush. Plus, the high-low skirt was perfect for showing off her amazing shoes.
When the ladies arrived, they were all looking flawless with hair by Carmen at Fabrizio Salon and Spa and makeup by Lizzie at Houppett. I was so excited to finally meet the bride! She was wearing one of her father’s button-down shirts, which was such a sweet idea. I could tell she was a little nervous, but so excited. Before asking Wendy to get her dress on, we helped her sister, Stacy, sneak something into it. Stacy put a pin inside Wendy’s dress with a blue safety pin for something blue, an elephant charm that Wendy gave Stacy for something borrowed, and their grandmother’s #1 MomMom charm for something old. When Wendy discovered the surprise, the sisters shared an emotional moment that had everyone in tears.
Once Wendy was dressed, we grabbed her incredible bouquet by Christopher Maney Designs which was brimming with hydrangeas, roses and tons of amazing orchids. Then we took some time with just her to get bridal portraits. Wendy really looked stunning and the Greenville Country Club had lots of great areas to shoot in. I especially loved shooting on the stairs in the main lobby. The light coming in from the large windows was just amazing. Wendy was on the stairs when her dad arrived. When he saw how beautiful she looked, he said, “I might not give the bride away.” We gave them a moment and then finished up with Wendy and the girls.
Now it was time to meet David. He and the groomsmen were in a separate area of the country club getting dressed. We got a few shots of him and the guys before heading outside to the formal boxwood gardens to do their first look. David waited with anticipation while Wendy made her way to him. When he turned around to see his soon-to-be bride, his face lit up. They were both so entranced with each other, that I think they may have forgotten I was there! I loved being able to capture them interacting and laughing without them even noticing me. Once they came back to reality, we walked around the property getting photos of Wendy and David together. It was amazing to see how calm both of them became once they were together. I think my favorite part of the day was when I took them into the field behind the country club and the band started practicing their wedding song, Sea of Love. David took Wendy by the hand and they started dancing around the field…it was magical.
Next their wedding party and families joined us outside for some quick group shots. Then they all retreated back inside to wait for cocktail hour to begin. Guests started arriving and enjoyed butlered hors d’oeuvres, cocktails and music from Righter than Rain String Duo while waiting for the ceremony to start at sundown. I took this time to shoot the reception site and was blown away by the beautiful scenery of the setting sun. I had to get Wendy and David back out there for sunset photos. This was not as easy as I thought. David was surrounded by excited guests and Wendy was upstairs relaxing with her bridesmaids. She had even taken her wedding dress off! But I convinced them and I think the photos speak for themselves.
Now it was finally time for the ceremony. Seated in the garden, guest awaited the big moment. After the wedding party entered, Wendy was escorted by her parents and David by his sisters. They met under a beautifully decorated huppah that sat in front of an amazing ivy-covered wall. The ceremony itself was full of many Jewish traditions, including the blessing of betrothal, giving of the ring, reading of the Ketubah (Marriage Contract), and the breaking of the glass. During the ceremony, the Rabbi explained that David means beloved in Hebrew and Wendy means gold. He also spoke about how the couple spoke of each other to him. Wendy said that David is calming, sweet, and honest and always makes her laugh. David said that Wendy has the unique ability to make everyone around her feel special and that she is loving, kind and welcomed his family with open arms. It was so lovely to hear about the bride and groom in their own words.
After the ceremony, everyone headed to the reception area and started the celebration with the Hora. I always enjoy this energetic and unpredictable dance! The looks on the faces of the couple while being hoisted into the air on chairs is so fun to capture. Once everyone was seated, Wendy’s dad, Al, began the wedding meal with a blessing over the challah, an elaborately braided bread. During dinner, David’s son gave a toast as did Wendy’s sister and niece. There was laughter, tears and lots of love. After dinner, the couple went inside to enjoy their first dance. Uptown Band performed a beautiful rendition of Sea of Love and then invited everyone onto he dance floor to get the party started. The dance floor was packed and everyone was showing off their best moves. Then the band slowed it down for parent dances. Wendy danced with her father and David danced with Wendy’s mom. It was a sweet moment that nobody wanted to miss.
The cake by Hotel du Pont was adorned with orchids and Wendy surprised David with a groom’s cake. David is a fisherman, so Wendy had a custom cake made featuring David in a boat catching Wendy on his fishing line. It was the cutest! The couple cut the cakes and got back to dancing. It was soon time for the Krenzel or crowning. This is a dance that honors parents who have married off their last child. Wendy’s parents were seated on chairs in the middle of the dance floor and Wendy and David placed crowns of flowers in their hair. Then family and friends danced around, kissing them as they passed in front. You could really see the pride in her parent’s faces and the joy and love surrounding them.
I loved the simple beauty of this Greenville Country Club wedding, with a focus on family and fun. I am thankful to have been a part of Wendy and David’s wonderful day and wish them years of love and happiness. Please enjoy some highlights and a slideshow below.