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I'm Ali Rae and I love building brands.
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Jennie & Alex…where do I begin with these two? As a wedding photographer, I see lots of couples and lots of interactions. None have been quite so sweet as Jennie and Alex together. It’s in the small things, you know? Like Jennie surprising Alex with his dog Kiah before the ceremony…like the sweet mementoes of family members that were unable to attend their wedding…like practicing your first dance in the few moments you have alone between your ceremony and reception.
We could not have asked for a more beautiful fall day. It was a crisp day yet still warm enough to be able to appreciate the occasional breeze that crossed over the pond. The girls’ bouquets of red and sandy rose were the perfect pop of color against their burgundy dresses. Morais Vineyards, which seems like it’s straight out of a European magazine, provided the most picturesque backdrop for their ceremony and reception.
This was a special wedding for me because I was able to bring Caleb, my husband, along to second shoot with me. Because of the move, we haven’t been able to shoot together in about a year. After the ceremony, he came up to me and hugged me, which isn’t totally normal for us on a workday. But he said, “Those are some of the most sincere vows I have ever heard.” And coming from a man of few words, that means a lot. And he was right–the personal vows that Alex and Jennie made to one another had everyone’s eyes a little teary.
Their reception began with a sweet welcome from Jennie’s mom and dad. After dinner, the toasts were impeccable! Yet again, you could tell the community that Jennie and Alex had built around themselves. Their friends, Whittney and Laronn, got married last year and did a joint speech that spoke about how Jennie and Alex were some of the most selfless individuals, helping them not only on their wedding day, but throughout their entire friendship. Their brother-in-law mentioned that he had judged Alex initially by his appearance, thinking he was going to be the typical frat guy…but instead he was pleasantly surprised that Alex was able to talk D&D with him and had found a lifelong friend in him. Toasts are always so special because they provide little glimpses into the couples’ lives and the glimpse into Jennie and Alex’s was nothing short of sweet and sincere.
Finally, other than Jennie and Alex getting married, my favorite part of the day was the father/daughter dance. Jennie’s father passed in her childhood, but considers her mother’s husband a dad in all ways. He had planned the most heartfelt surprise for her mid-dance. After dancing with her for a few moments, her father’s brother joined the two of them on the dance floor and she was able to complete the dance with her uncle in honor of her late father. She had no idea this was going to happen, so the surprise brought an even more emotional touch to it. I shot many of those images through the tears in my eyes.
To the new Mr. and Mrs. Newman, congratulations! Thank you so much for including me in your wedding day. It is an honor I’ll cherish forever, as I hope you all cherish these images! Cheers!
Photographer | Ali Rae Haney Photography
Venue | Morais Vineyards
Planner | Dragonfly Events
Bride & Bridesmaids’ Hair | Evergreen Beauty
Bride’s Makeup | Whittney Wharwood
Bridal Gown Designer | Made with Love
Bridal Gown Boutique | Annalise Bridal Boutique
Bridesmaids’ Dresses | Azazie
Groom & Groomsmen Tuxes | Men’s Wearhouse
Florist | Angie Nauman
Baker | Haute Cakes Pastry Shop
Caterer | The Chef’s Table
Paper Suite | Lucky Envelope
DJ | Level Up Entertainment
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