Bryanna and Ethan traveled from Seattle, Washington to get married in the lovely Shenandoah Valley. They picked the most perfect time of year for their Virginia wedding too. Fall weddings in Virginia are very popular because not only is the weather so nice, but everywhere you look it is so beautiful! Bryanna and Ethan met while attending Virginia Tech and were anxious to return to Virginia to become husband and wife.
Bryanna and I spoke on the phone several time before their wedding but we never met in person until their wedding day. Bryanna, Ethan, and their family were so easy to get along with it didn't matter that we had never met before. Her family welcomed me into their home, where Bryanna and her bridesmaids got ready, and into a very special day of their lives. I actually started the day at the American Hotel where the parents of the bride along with their siblings were preparing the final touches on the reception area at the American Hotel. Bryanna and Ethan chose to do most of their wedding decor themselves, along with the help of their family and they did an amazing job. The mother of the bride made four, yes four, wedding cakes. She chose different styles that the couple expressed interest in so they didn't have to pick just one. I was able to capture photos of her mom and dad putting the cakes together at the American Hotel that morning. The tables were filled with cute fall decorations all DIY of course. The wedding party table was so pretty with pumpkin place cards and a custom heart with the couple's initials. You can tell the amount of time and love that went into every decoration there.
Bryanna and Ethan got married at a local church, also decorated by family. The church floor even matched their wedding colors of plum and red. The wind was in full force so we did many of the portraits inside of the church that day. After the very sweet and emotional ceremony we made one more unique stop before heading to downtown Staunton. The bride's grandfather was unable to attend the wedding because he was in the hospital with pneumonia. So, we took the bride's entire family to the hospital for a few family portraits with her grandfather. He was so happy to see the bride and groom and the rest of the family, it was such a special moment!
Next, we headed to downtown Staunton. The wedding party braved the chilly winds to do some outdoor portraits before entering the reception. The American Hotel is surrounded by so many great locations for wedding portraits. We also snuck out for some sunset photos on the Sears Bridge.
The reception at The American Hotel was so much fun. The DJ kept things moving with fun music and all the guests were dancing throughout the night. Bryanna and Ethan not only had four wedding cakes, but homemade fudge and cookies too. Then later in the evening they put out a sweet and salty snack bar for guests to enjoy! Luckily the wind slowed down enough for the couple to have a sparkler exit before they left for the tropical honeymoon!