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Otterkill Golf Club wedding

Stunning September Hudson Valley Wedding at the Country Club at Otterkill

Gabby and Mike’s stunning September Hudson Valley wedding took place at the beautiful Country Club at Otterkill. Their photographer, Erica Leman of Sweet Alice Photography has known the bride for some time, and recalls why shooting their wedding meant so much.
 
RELATED: SEE GABBY AND MIKE’S ENGAGEMENT SESSION HERE
 

“I first met Gabby at a wedding – but not her own,” says Erica. “She works as one of the coordinators at Hollow Brook Golf Club and told me after that wedding that it only took working with her for that one time two years ago to know that she wanted me to photograph her wedding (what a kind compliment!).”
 

Erica says, “Gabby and Mike are the most dynamic duo. Their happiness is infectious, and makes others aspire to what they are. They are hilarious, and always have others laughing. Most of all, they are kind and compassionate and have a deep love for all of the individuals in their lives who have always supported them.”
 

The Country Club at Otterkill recently went through a renovation, and Gabby and Mike were one of the first couples to get married there after that reno. Their wedding was also full of so many details. “Their little touches were so evident – the signs laid against chairs lining the ceremony aisle, the Marvel-themed wedding cake, the hue of the bridesmaid gowns. Everything was attended to perfectly,” says Erica.
 

What was Erica’s favorite moment to capture? She says, “…my very favorite was when, after the ceremony, walking away for formal portraits, Mike looked at Gabby with the biggest smile I have ever seen, and had tears in his eyes, just SO excited to know they were married. Every day should have this sort of love in it. Every single day.”
 
Photo Credit: Sweet Alice Photography
 


 

Vendors:

 

Photographer: Sweet Alice Photography

Venue: The Country Club at Otterkill

Cake: Dream Cakes Bakery

DJ: Music Speaks Volumes

Florist: Flowers by Reni

Hair: Pineapple Day Spa

Makeup: Makeup by Dia

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bohemian Hudson Valley Wedding at Locust Grove J Ferrara Photography

Bohemian Hudson Valley Wedding at Locust Grove Estate

Ashley and Tristian had a perfect day for their bohemian Hudson Valley wedding at Locust Grove Estate in Poughkeepsie. There were so many unique and fun details throughout this wedding starting with Ashley’s stunning blush wedding dress accentuated perfectly with the rhinestone belt she found on Etsy.
 

One of the most meaningful personal touches was a vintage VW bus Ashley rented for the reception. Tristian loves those old busses and this one happened to be converted into a photo booth which guests enjoyed throughout the night.
 

The ceremony was emotional and touching, as well and was beautifully led by Reverend Lisa Zaro.
 
Featured Photo Credit: J. Ferrara Photography
 

 

Vendors:

PhotographerJ. Ferrara Photography

VenueLocust Grove Estate

SignageEtsy

OfficiantPersonalized Ceremonies by Rev. Zarro

PhotoboothPhotobooth Planet

DJThe Digital Musicians

Read More

Lavish Hudson Valley Wedding at Whitby Castle

When you think of the Hudson Valley weddings, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Castle weddings probably aren’t on the top of your list, but this stunningly regal and lavish wedding at Whitby Castle in Rye, NY will have thinking otherwise.
 

Jamie and Dale got engaged in Paris, and so a castle wedding was only fitting! Their wedding was dripping in gorgeous details…from jewelry, to flowers, to signage, this couple has exquisite taste, and their wedding photographers, The Ramsdens, captured every detail perfectly.
 


 

Vendors…
 

Venue: Whitby Castle

Bride & Bridemaid’s Dressess: Lady Gray Bridal

Hair: Lulu’s Hair Studio

Flowers: The Flower Barn

String Trio: Capriccio Ensemble

DJ: Enriquez Entertainment

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Hudson Valley Wedding Nidya LLoyd Photography Le Chateau

Royal Hudson Valley Wedding at Le Chateau

It’s no secret that a bride feels like a queen on her wedding day, and this Hudson Valley wedding is dripping in royal elegance. Lori and Rob married this past march at Le Chateau in South Salem, New York, and was perfectly captured by Nidya Lloyd Photography.
 

Nidya says, “It was last spring when I met up with Lori & Rob for their engagement session…Lori is of the sweetest kind…with a smile that is simply brilliant. She is a nurturer by nature (say that 10x fast) and Robert is the recipient of all of her affection. Robert has a true protector spirit…and when he sees his lady and he melts. This is the type of couple that I could photograph all day!”
 

Here’s a fun fact…Lori’s dress was SO HUGE that it actually broke the hook the venue installed IN THE WALL!!
 

Featured photo and credit to all below: Nidya Lloyd Photography
 


 

Vendors:

 

DressBridal Reflections

HairHair by Val K

MakeupBeauty Entourage

JewelryLa Gravinese Jewelers

CrownEden Luxe Bridal

InvitesLaura Damiano Designs

VenueLe Chateau

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Krystal Pratt Productions Lake Minnewaska Engagement

Breathtaking Winter Engagement photos at Lake Minnewaska

Tell me about your love story?

 

Alexis: “Our first date was at an Applebee’s close to my college. We met in a parking lot by school to drive together to the restaurant and Steven got into my car with no shoes on! He recently came from a run and was trying to quickly change. I was kind of alarmed since this was our first meeting and I wasn’t sure what I was getting into. After getting to the restaurant we talked the whole time and laughed about how we ate at the same speed. We both new this was something special after our first date. As our relationship continued to grow we faced different challenges. We lived two hours apart from each other and we were both in college, so finding time to see each other was not always easy. We overcame the distance and fell in love with each other and created so many new memories traveling and pushing each other to try new things.

 

I knew Steven was the one because I could just see how much he cared for me and how special he made me feel all the time. I knew I could tell him anything that was on my mind and he wouldn’t judge me or laugh. He would always listen and always made me feel safe.

 

Tell me about the proposal?

 

Steven: First, I asked her mother for her blessing. Then, I met with her father to get his blessing as well. Once they both said yes, I felt excited moving forward with the planning. I started doing a lot of engagement ring research at different stores and on the web. During the planning, I had to casually find out her ring size without her getting suspicious and also find out what type of diamond she liked most. After a lot of shopping, I finally designed and purchased an engagement ring. The next step was to determine where and when I was going to propose.

 

Alexis brought up an idea to go to the Mohonk Mountain House to celebrate our three-and-a-half year anniversary, so I decided this would be the perfect opportunity because she planned the trip and she wouldn’t expect a thing. The week leading up to the proposal was full of excitement and nerves for me as I kept the ring secretly stored in our room without her even knowing. The morning of the proposal, we made the trip up to the Mountain House and started the day with breakfast.

 

As we walked around Lake Mohonk, I was trying to determine when and where I was actually going to propose. We then did a tour inside the house and during that tour I decided that I would propose at the Skytop Tower later that day. We climbed up the tower and I was planning on proposing on the top, but once we got up, it was raining extremely hard and was extremely windy. There were a few people on top as well and I wanted it to be private so we went back down and started to walk around by the base of the tower. I tried to inconspicuously make Alexis walk in front of me so that I could pull the ring out and surprise her. She kept turning around but I was able to have her look the other way long enough to pull out the ring and get down on one knee. I was very excited and nervous and forgot the speech I had planned. She was very excited and said ‘yes’!

 

Alexis: About two weeks before, I had told Steven that I wanted to go to the Mohonk Mountain House for the day. Little did I know he was already planning something special but didn’t have an exact plan. We had a 9:30 am. breakfast reservation and while we ate we brought up topics about the future and even marriage. We enjoyed the beautiful scenery and relaxing interior. We did a tour and walked around the grounds where we even saw a bald eagle! Later on, we started to hike up to the Skytop Tower where we enjoyed the beautiful view, but the weather was getting pretty rainy and windy. We made our way to the top of the Tower and we could barley keep our hats on. Steven suggested going back down and walking around the lake near the tower. He kept telling me to walk ahead because he wanted to take a picture but, the nosy person I am, I turned around too soon and saw him taking the ring box out of his pocket. I immediately started to cry and of course said ‘YES!’ We stayed in that moment for a while and later shared the news with our loved ones.

 

Why did you pick Lake Minnewaska for your engagement photos?


 

Steven: We picked this location because the Hudson Valley is an area that we’ve spent a lot of time in and have gone on many adventures in including hiking at Minnewaska State Park. I proposed to Alexis right next door at the Mohonk Mountain House and figured that Minnewaska State Park would be the perfect place for our photos, especially with beautiful mountains, lakes and views surrounding it. Also, Minnewaska State Park was the first place I ever took Alexis hiking and was so happy to share that adventure with her. It made picking it as our location even more special.

 

What was your favorite memory of your engagement photoshoot?

 

Alexis: My favorite memory was just being in the moment and being able to be as cheesy and in love as could be. I love being in Steven’s arms and being able to do this on top of a mountain is something I will never forget.

 

What is your favorite image from your engagement?

 

Alexis: I love the close up of Steven! I love how Krystal captured his happiness in a photo and it is one I will always cherish. My other favorite includes the one of us kissing with the whole lake in the background. I just love how perfect the landscape was captured but still focused on us as well.

 

Steven: My favorite picture was close up, where I am standing behind Alexis with my arms wrapped around her and Lake Minnewaska is in the background. In the picture we both have the biggest smiles and I love how it captures our true happiness and love for each other.

 

Did you include any DIY projects in your shoot?

 

Alexis: I created a double sided wood slice sign into our photos. My side read “Love you more.” It was always a saying that we said back and forth to each other and it means so much to me. The other side I designed for Steven it said “In it for the long run.” Because Steven is a runner, I thought it fit perfectly.

 

Can you describe the photo shoot for us?

 

Alexis: The day was beautiful. It was windy and my hair was flying everywhere, but I couldn’t have asked for a better day. It was also extremely icy, which I think made the shoot even more fun and challenging.

 

Steven: The day of the shoot we got lucky with a nice sunny day and not too cold. It snowed there a few days before, so there was snow around which make the pictures even more spectacular, especially how Lake Minnewaska was completely frozen. There was ice on some sections of the carriage roads which limited our photo locations slightly, but made it fun trying out different spots. Overall the shoot was great, starting from nerves in the beginning to feeling like a natural in front of the camera at the end.

 

Do you have advice for anyone else planning their engagement photo shoot?

 

Alexis: I would say definitely pick a location that is special to you both. It made our photo shoot so much more meaningful because we were creating more memories on top of the old ones we already had. Those memories included conquering fears and trying new things together in our relationship. It just made every photo so much more special.

 

Steven: Definitely pick a location that has an important meaning in your relationship, that way the moments created in the pictures will be so natural and full of love.

 

How/Why did you choose your photographer?

 

Alexis: I worked with Krystal in the past and knew the quality of her work was incredible. Her attention to detail is amazing and she really creates beautiful pieces. I also loved how she communicated with her photo subjects in the past and I knew she would be the perfect photographer for our first photo shoot.

 

Photo Credit: Krystal Platt Productions

 

 

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Crystal Stewart Photo Untermeyer Park Yonkers

Gorgeous Garden Engagement at Untermeyer Gardens in Yonkers

Natalie and Alek met in college where they were both studying biology and discovered they shared a fierce passion for public health. “We met at college in Organic Chemistry lab,” says Alek. “We were partners. I was a senior she was a sophomore. I always thought she was hot but she didn’t give me the time of day. It took a while.”

 

They let their relationship naturally fall into place. Alek says, “Well we really let things fall into place from the beginning. It felt so natural, we were just really attracted to each other. We met trying to attain the same biology degree so we really respect each other’s dedication to our respective fields and enjoy having deep conversations about that and life.”

 

Alek knew Nat was the one when she told him the story of why she wouldn’t talk to him at first. He says, “Months later, she told me the only reason she never gave me the time of day was because she was in a relationship, but she was really into me all that time in the lab. At that point I knew I could respect her. But I knew I loved her when I wrote out our first Valentine’s Day card. Somehow those words explained exactly how I felt to her and to myself.”

 

Their photo shoot, according to photographer Crystal Stewart, of Crystal Stewart Photo, was at Nat’s favorite place, Untermeyer Gardens. “Her favorite place,” says Stewart, “was this gorgeous private garden that is normally sprawling with vibrant color. This winter was brutal in the northeast, so upon arrival, we noticed that there was not even one pop of color. Initially very sad, the couple decided to just trust me and we really got some gorgeous images. Throughout the session, this couple was playful, joked around, dotted over one another and really showed how much they understood each other.”

 

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Dutchess Manor Wedding Majestic Studios Photography

Stunning Peach and Gray Wedding at Dutchess Manor

When wedding pros get married, this is what it looks like. What makes this wedding extra special is that it features wedding professionals we’ve worked with before. Frankie and Ava, owners of Elegant Invites by Fitting Image Graphics, had a stunning late summer wedding at Dutchess Manor, captured by Majestic Studios.
 

Both were gracious enough to share their engagement AND wedding photos with us.
 

Their Engagement:

 

How did you meet?

 

Ava says, “We were set up on a blind date. We had our first date at a fancy restaurant in White Plains on a cold winter night right before Christmas. We ordered so much food off the menu but barely ate any of it because we were captivated by each other and our conversation. After hours of talking, we both didn’t want it to end. However, when it was time to leave, Frankie was kind enough to drive me to my car. On the way there, I stopped by a Christmas tree stand to embrace the moment. It was there where I spotted mistletoe. Frankie didn’t get the hint, but when we got back to his car, he pulled out an enormous bouquet from his trunk. It was the largest amount of flowers I’d ever seen and knew this was going to be the start of something great.”
 

RELATED: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR SAVE THE DATES

 

What was your proposal like?

 

“After talking about getting engaged, I thought he’d never pop the question,” says Ava. “However, on Memorial Day weekend in 2016, Frankie convinced me to go on a work trip with him to Providence, Rhode Island. One of the nights we were there, Frankie planned a romantic evening for the two of us. It started with a surprise gondola boat ride around the canals of Providence… It was incredibly romantic, but I still didn’t suspect a thing. Afterwards, Frankie and I walked around the city where he proposed in front of a beautiful panorama. I learned later on that Frankie planned to propose on the gondola but was afraid of tipping the boat and losing the ring. So he came up with an impromptu plan “B”. As a newly engaged couple, Frankie planned dinner at the Melting Pot, my favorite restaurant.”
 

Check out their beautiful engagement photos below, by Majestic Studios, and then keep reading to learn more about their amazing wedding and see the stunning photos from their day.
 

RELATED: HUDSON VALLEY WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS SHARE 6 REASONS WHY YOU NEED ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS

 


 

RELATED: 5 TIPS YOU NEED TO KNOW FOR AWESOME ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS

 

Their Wedding:

 

According to Majestic Studios, “Ava and Frankie truly had a magical wedding day! From their engagement session to the end of their reception, all of their unique ideas and approaches to planning a wedding paid off, as you can see from the photos. Ava had a special moment with her father, where they saw each other for the first time the morning of her wedding. It was nearly impossible to hold back the tears!Photography was super important to these guys, so they planned to have enough time to visit two incredible locations, Boscobel and Stone Crop Gardens. Thankfully, weather was on our side for this early August day, and we took full advantage.Dutchess Manor provided the gorgeous sunset, one of many things this location is known for. It really was a storybook wedding for Ava and Frankie, and we’re so glad we were trusted to capture it for them!”
 

Why did you choose the Hudson Valley for your wedding?

 

Ava says, “I grew up in the Hudson Valley and loved the beauty and charm of the area. I envisioned having some kind of water in the background and so the Hudson River was the ideal choice. We visited some venues in the areas but had difficulty finding the right fit for us. After a long, tiring day, we decided to call it quits and have drinks at a local bar. We explained our long day to the bartender, and he suggested a place we hadn’t yet seen, Dutchess Manor. He gave us a glimmer of hope, and so we decided to check it out. When we saw it, we both knew instantly that we had found our place. It had everything we were looking for…”
 

RELATED: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE TONE OF YOUR INVITES

 

What was your wedding theme?

 

“Our theme was classical elegance,” says Ava. “We highlighted this theme with light summery colors of coral and gray. Each table had tall, glass lanterns surrounded by a ring of different shades of coral roses and a candle that lit up the table. Next to each plate was a customized menu with rose gold foil accents placed delicately into a classic coral napkin. Each chair had an off-white bow to further represent the elegant style we strived for. While our theme was elegant in nature, many of our guests are fun-loving people so we added fun yard games to our venue during our extended cocktail hour and strategically placed signage reminding our family and friends of our wedding hashtag and our customized Snapchat filters they could use on site. All stationery and signage was designed by us at Elegant Invites.”
 

What was your most memorable moment?

 

Ava says, “A couple of months before the wedding, we decided to take dance lessons to learn choreography for our first dance, which was to the song “Stand by You” by Rachel Platten. We practiced for weeks and months trying to get our steps natural and fluid. The end of our dance was supposed to be a dramatic lift identical to the epic Dirty Dancing finale. During rehearsal, sometimes I would actually nail the lift and sometimes I would accidentally end up hitting Frankie. In the end, we modified the lift and created a fun, yet romantic dance routine that truly reflected the love we felt for each other. On the day of our wedding after a few cocktail hour drinks, we felt more confident and nailed the dance perfectly. Big shout out to Stu and Chun Levin for teaching us our dance moves.”
 

RELATED: HOW TO MANAGE YOUR WEDDING INVITATIONS LIKE A PRO (PART 1)

 

Do you have any advice for engaged couples?

 

“As a newly married couple,” says Ava, “we have a few pieces of advice:
 

1. Create a spreadsheet of all the vendors you’ll need. As you start to secure vendors, fill in your spreadsheet with contact information, deposits, and cost. This will help you organize your vendors as well as serve as a budgeting tool.
 

2. Plan in advance. To make your wedding as special as you’ve always hoped for, give yourself time to plan. When you rush, you won’t be able to put the time in that you want. By allowing yourself time, you won’t stress and you’ll get the task done.
 

3. Create a master checklist. There are so many details that need to come together for your big day. It can be helpful to create a master list and next to each item, indicate when you plan to work on it. This will help with time management and organization.
 

4. Delegate. It can be hard to do everything on your own, but if you give certain tasks to a family member, bridesmaid, friend, or parent, you’ll have more time to do other things you need to work on.
 

5. Don’t forget the big picture. The big picture is that you’re getting married to the love of your life and best friend. It’s important to spend time with your loved one even while planning. Your wedding can easily take over your life, but don’t forget to spend QUALITY time during the time leading up to your wedding. Also, it’s impossible to have everything go perfectly. The weather may not be warm and sunny, your limo might arrive late, your hair may not be what you hoped for, or one of your guests may cancel at the last minute. These things happen. Take a step back and remember the big picture – you’re getting married today! Focus on the love you share and the future you hope to have together. This will help you get through the blips on your big day.”
 

RELATED: HOW TO MANAGE YOUR WEDDING INVITATIONS LIKE A PRO (PART 2)

 

Vendors:

 

Wedding Reception: The Dutchess Manor

Wedding Ceremony: St. James the Apostle in Carmel

Wedding Invites & Stationery: Elegant Invites by Fitting Image Graphics

Bridal Dress: Blossom Brides

Bridesmaid Dresses: RK Bridal, NYC

Men’s Suits: Men’s Warehouse

Photographer: Majestic Studios

Florist: Hudson Valley Floral

DJ: Total DJ Entertainment

Cake: The Pastry Garden

Dance Studio: Stu & Chun Levin

Hair: Steven Amendola Salon & Spa

Makeup: Stacie Cervini

Hotel: Hyatt House, Fishkill

Limo: M & V Limo

Shuttle Service: Leprechaun Lines

Travel Agent: Down Under Endeavors

Floral Bouquet Preserver: Keepsake Floral

Rings: Jewelry by Johan and Daniel’s Jeweler

Photo credit to all: Majestic Studios

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WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

Library-Themed Wedding at the Historic Barns of Nipmoose

“Kristina and Philip planned a library-themed destination wedding in the mountains of New York State. They picked a location with gorgeous historical barns, and worked hard on the decor and design of their wedding! I absolutely loved the details that they picked, being a fellow book and library lover! I also loved the florals with a mix of succulents and peonies! The entire day felt like a fairy tale with gorgeous weather and an absolutely stunning sunset. The band was rocking inside of one of the barns and guests were spread out on the grounds enjoying delicious food and drinks, yard games, and fire pits. The day was spectacular and a perfect representation of the two of them!” – Brooke Azevedo, Brooke Ellen Photography
 

Vendors:

 

Band: Silver Arrow Band

Florals: Rose to the Occasion

Caterer: Jeff Loshinsky Catering

Event Venue: Historic Barns of Nipmoose

Photo credit: Brooke Ellen Photography

 
WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

WEDDING AT HISTORIC BARNS OF NIPMOOSE BY Brooke Ellen Photography

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Wedding at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, Pocantico Hills

Stunning Country Glam Wedding at Blue Hill at Stone Barns

Ashlea and Zach’s wedding at Blue Hill at Stone Barns was the perfect setting for their August wedding. “Blue Hill at Stone Barns is a gorgeous place with amazing food. Blue Hill is a working four-season farm and educational center 30 miles north of New York City. We had perfect weather for their wedding day,” says James Ferrara of J. Ferrara Photography
 

He says, “Ashlea was a beautiful bride, with an extremely unique and awesome dress by designer Yolan Cris. She did a first look with Zach, and they were so cute together- laughing away and just so in love. We walked around the grounds to do their portraits, and this place is just so beautiful, there are so many amazing spots for photos.”
 

The ceremony itself was just as special as she walked down the aisle with not one, but two special people. Ferrara says, “Ashlea was walked down the aisle by both her dad and her stepdad, and I thought it was very sweet.”
 

As for the reception…”The party was ridiculous with lots of dancing and music by the Cafe Wha? band who were just terrific! The room was gorgeous, with the split stone walls and the candles and amazing floral designs,” says Ferrara.
 

Vendors

 

Florals: Verde Flowers

Shoes: Manolo Blahnik

Dress: Yolan Cris

Band: Cafe Wha? House Band

Venue: Blue Hill at Stone Barns
 

Take a scroll through this gallery for some amazing wedding inspiration. Featured photo and gallery courtesy of J. Ferrara Photography
 

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Faraway Farm Alpacas Yorktown Heights engagement photos

Alpaca Farm Engagement Session in Yorktown Heights

There is no shortage of amazing spots in the Hudson Valley perfect for your engagement session. However, Julia and Theo really wanted a location that was unique and different, yet matched something that they were both passionate about. “While throwing around ideas for their engagement session”, says Kathleen, owner of Parenthesis Photography, “Julia mentioned that she and Theo really loved animals, especially alpacas. After doing a little research I came across Faraway Farm Alpacas in Yorktown Heights, which looked amazing.”
 

Anytime you can incorporate animals into your photos, it just takes them to a whole new level. You never know what they’re going to do and they just instantly make you feel comfortable and happy. Kathleen says, “The alpacas were a little shy at first, but eventually warmed up after we gave them some treats.” Food works every time!.
 

While the engagement session was great, sometimes the best parts are in the quiet moments. “The end of their shoot was my favorite part though,” says Kathleen. “We stood by the fence near the edge of the woods, and I asked Julia and Theo to tell me about how they’d met and got engaged. We spent about ten minutes just talking about their relationship and taking photos until the sun started to go down.”
 

How many of you would love to have these alpacas in your engagement photos? Are you thinking of doing engagement photos in a non-traditional location? Have you taken engagement photos at a unique location? We’d love to see!
 

Featured photo credit and credit to all below: Parenthesis Photography

 

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The Timing of Your Portrait Session and Why it’s so Important

By Madison Baltodano, owner, and photographer at Bella Luz Imagery
 

Many photographers refer to the “Golden Hour” when suggesting times for your photos. So what is this “Golden Hour” of natural light and why is it so important? How do you use it to your advantage? What happens if you take photos outside of the “Golden Hour?”
 

What is the “Golden Hour?”

 

The “Golden Hour” is the last hour of light as the sun is setting or the first hour of light as the sun is rising. During this time of day a beautiful, soft light is created which creates very flattering portraits. You can use this natural light to your benefit in many ways: posing with the sun behind you or with the sun in front of you. Each way will give you very dramatic and different images. Let’s take a look.
 

Sun behind the subject

 

Putting the sun behind the subject creates magical backlighting and artistic sun flares.
 

Sun behind the subject. Photo credit Bella Luz Imagery


 

Sun in front of the subject

 

Keeping the sun in front of the subject creates stronger contrasted images, yet still with soft, flattering light.
 

Sun in front of the subject. Photo credit: Bella Luz Imagery


 

What happens if you don’t take photos during the “Golden Hour?”

 

Sometimes couples want to do a first look, and take photos before the ceremony so that they can spend more time with their family and friends during the cocktail hour. This is a great idea and I highly suggest it, but a few things need to be considered for taking photos during the day.
 

Mid-day sun

 

An experienced photographer will work with mid-day sun to use it to their advantage in certain situations. Putting it behind your subject if at all possible will help, or taking wide sweeping landscape shots where the harsh shadows on the face aren’t as apparent also works well for high noon sun.
 

Mid-day sun. Photo credit: Bella Luz Imagery


 

Mid-day shade or clouds

 

Shade can be your best friend. Anytime you are taking photos in the shade, especially the shade of a large dense cloud, it is as if the sun has been put into a giant, soft box, again creating beautiful, soft, portrait quality light. So if you are taking photos mid-day or even early afternoon, look for a shaded area to do the first look and family photos.
 

Shaded photo, mid-day. Photo credit: Bella Luz Imagery


 

Cloud cover, mid-day. Photo credit: Bella Luz Photography


 

Overhead sun

 

If at all possible, avoid taking portraits with the sun directly overhead, which may create dark shadows on your eyes, or have you squinting as the sun hits your pupils.
 

Your photographer will know what lighting works best and what lighting they are most comfortable using and best suited for their style of photography. It is best to consult with them when planning your photography timeline for your wedding day.
 
What’s type of lighting is your favorite? What time will you be getting photos taken?
 

Featured photo shows the sun behind the subject. Photo credit: Bella Luz Imagery

 

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J Ferrara Photography Poughkeepsie Grandview Wedding

Summer Wedding at the Poughkeepsie Grandview

“Rita and Alex’s wedding at The (Poughkeepsie) Grandview was nothing short of one amazing day,” says James Ferrara of J. Ferrara Photography. “The bride’s dress was beautiful, and all day she was one big smile. She was relaxed, had fun, couldn’t care less about the rain that threw us for a loop,” he says. Summer weddings in the Hudson Valley can be unpredictable, and unfortunately, there’s nothing you can do about the weather. “It goes to show you how much the attitude of the bride sets the tone of the day,” says Ferrara.
 

“We went to the church (St. Martin De Porres Roman Catholic Church in Poughkeepsie) for the ceremony, and afterward, we headed up north for photos, with looming storm clouds on the horizon,” he says. “Just as we pulled up to Franklin D. Roosevelt Estate for photos, the rain started. We were only there several minutes, then headed to the Poughkeepsie train station and waited out the storm. Once the torrential rain and wind died down, we did bridal party photos there.  From there, we headed to The (Poughkeepsie) Grandview ballroom, where the rest of the night was great with a live band that kept everyone on their feet.”
 

How did you meet? Tell us about the proposal?

 

Rita says “We met as Freshman in college at The University of Scranton Chapman Lake Retreat Center. We worked together, attended a few classes together, and were friends for nearly all of college before we started dating. There was always something special about Alex. We shared fun times throughout college and when Alex and I finally realized we really liked each other more than just friends we started dating a few months before graduation. he and I were long distance for 3 years before we no longer had a 2+ hour drive between us.”
 

“The day of the proposal was also my dad’s birthday,” says Rita. “Before going to dinner with my dad, Alex took me back to the place we met. He got me there because he and mom cooked up a story… Since she works for the University, she told me that she thought she lost her wedding ring at a meeting there the day before. What an actress! On the way there, I asked Alex, “Do you think we’ll find the ring?” He said, “If there’s a ring there, we’ll find it.” When we got to campus, he proposed in the same exact place where we met…There are no videos or pictures from the proposal but I remember every single part of it…oF course, we go to the “birthday party for my dad” to find that he and mom knew all along. Dad says that 65 was the best birthday he’s ever had.”
 

What was the inspiration for your day? Did you have a specific theme, style or color palette? Did you incorporate any cultural or religious traditions in any part of your day?

 

“I had many inspirations during the planning process… but, in reality, the inspiration was quite simple: we wanted to throw a party to celebrate our families, who made us who we are (ultimately the best partners for one another!),” says Rita “With every single detail and decision, Alex reminded me “we have to keep it fun” and we certainly did…The band was key to a fabulous party. Before we knew any details, we knew we were going to have a band. In terms of colors… I focused on romantic ivories, pinks, and peaches with lots of fresh green accents. Our religious ceremony was very traditional with both sides of the family having key parts in the mass. It was important to bring the family together from the very beginning. The Groom’s Mom sang during Communion and the Bride’s Mom was Maid of Honor. It meant a lot for me to have my father walk me down the aisle…Our priest, Father Scott Pilarz S.J., was someone we both met while attending The University of Scranton. He drove in from Maryland.
 

Let’s talk wedding decor. How did you decorate your space for the ceremony and the reception? Was any part of the decor DIY?

 

Rita says, “The wedding theme was an elegant, fun party that would ultimately bring everyone together on the dance floor. The venue was perfect with guests entering through a tunnel walkway to a windowed room that overlooked the Hudson River. Guests had the option to go outside on the deck or stay inside to enjoy the view from a room resembling a winery. We had a memory table with picture displays we created that sparked great stories about family not with us. When it was time for the reception the curtains that created the tunnel were raised allowing the guests to enter a room filled with summer flowers, candlelight and lots of love. We were blessed in that our venue was so stunning in itself. the view of the Hudson River was perfect (luckily, no rain for the cocktail hour) and our flowers were perfect for our space.”
 

What were the florals like? Did they play an important part in the overall style of your wedding?

 

“The flowers were magnificent and brought the elegance, beauty, and color we wanted,” says Rita. “We wanted there to be a romantic garden feeling that was soft and yet bright. The centerpieces and tablescapes were alternated on the tables allowing the eye to capture the beauty of the room with sparkling candlelight. My bridal bouquet incorporated flowers from my Communion veil. My Aunt Am, who was also my Godmother, made the veil. She passed away from cancer six years ago. Our florist was able to take these flowers and seamlessly weave them into my bouquet so part of her was with me throughout the day.”
 

Did you personalize the day in any way? What were some of your favorite parts of your wedding?

 

Rita says “The question is: What wasn’t personalized? Our signature drink at the cocktail hour was named “The Chapman Cooler” after Chapman Lake where we met and also where Alex proposed. Every single food choice was chosen based on our individual family favorites. Making sure there was pasta for my family and pigs in a blanket for Alex’s. We had a saxophone playing during cocktail hour. Alex worked on recommended songs to give the band for a year leading up to the wedding. Capping the night off, a Venetian hour and pretzels to-go kept the guests engaged and partying until the end. The University of Scranton has been a key part of our lives. As mentioned, not only were we married by our friend, a Jesuit priest, Fr. Scott Pilarz but we also had so many of our college friends in attendance…”
 

Let’s talk fashion. How did you both choose your wedding day look?

 

“I tried on dozens of dresses,” says Rita…”I truly did not know what look I wanted. but, I did know that it needed to match our theme: It needed to be fun! However, much like everything else, it also needed to be elegant and timeless. I wanted something that had a wow factor and that no one had seen before. I truly believe I found that in my Tara Keely dress…I felt like such a bride rocking that train down the aisle. As for Alex, he wanted classic black which is always something that I’ve loved. in fact, it is what my bridesmaids also wear. At first, I thought the bridesmaids would wear blush and the men navy. but, like many things when planning a wedding, visions evolve and at the end of the day, I loved how Alex’s shawl-collared tux stood out from the groomsmen.”

 

What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?

 

“It’s tough to say what was the most anticipated or special moment of the day,” says Rita. “When you are so involved in the planning, you are excited about every element… but, for me, the most anticipated moment of our day was our first dance. Alex and I struggled with the choice for our first dance for months (maybe a year). we went back and forth. Alex is very well versed in music so he was picky and I was less picky on the song but, having some dance experience, I knew the kind of dance we wanted…We danced to “Because the Night” by 10,000 Maniacs. We received so many compliments on our dance because it was a song that no one expected and truly kicked off the night as a party.”

 

Do you have any wedding planning or marriage advice?

 

Rita says, “For a few weeks after the wedding/honeymoon were over, I went through something referred to as “The Princess Crisis.” It sounds a little dramatic but I truly loved every single part of the planning that when it was over, I missed it. It just went by as quickly as everyone says it does. We danced all night and WITH EACH OTHER. I know that sounds funny but it is easy to get separated when there are so many people pulling you in different directions. Our friends gave us the advice to stay together during the day and we did. I would also say to process everything as “this is part of my story; it’s ok”… on the day of the wedding, my blusher was missing, it was raining during our pictures and we had to choose a new location, my bouquet was left at the first photo location and I didn’t have it for the second. Well, let me tell you what happened from all of those seemingly “imperfections” — my lovely friends saved the day and came through for me, we ended up getting beautiful pictures at the second location and beautifully romantic ones of Alex and I with an umbrella…and my flowers were safely recovered and there for my entrance. Every single thing is part of your story and no one’s story will be alike. If it was, weddings would not be as fun! Overall, my advice is from the moment you are engaged to enjoy the journey. Make the planning a partnership with your fiance. Take opinions as “just opinions” and make decisions based on what is most important to you – and on the day of, have the time of your life because that party is for you!”
 

Vendors:

 

Photographer: J. Ferrara Photography

Dress: Tara Keely

Florals: Flowers by David Anthony

Venue/Catering: The Poughkeepsie Grandview

Band: Sound Image Entertainment

Cinema and Video: Kevin Fonash Studios

 

 

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Charming Rose & Gold Wedding at Falkirk Estate & Country Club

Falkirk Estate & Country Club in Central Valley, NY was the perfect setting for Amanda and Chris’s wedding. Having met in high school, they weren’t high school sweethearts…just friends. Little did they know, they would turn out to be each others soul mates!
 

After hanging out in the same circle of friends, they realized they had a lot in common and became close as time went on. They even did the baby project for health class together! Once high school was over they kept in touch and one day, they realized that their friendship was turning into something more.
 

During their first year of dating, Chris, who at the time was working a part-time job with not much extra money, decided to make Amanda’s birthday gift. He went out and bought construction paper, stick-on googly eyes and a couple of other art supplies to hand make a picture frame of himself. When Amanda opened her gift, she thought it was the sweetest and most thoughtful gift anyone has ever given her!
 

Seven years later, Chris, as an ode to their first year of dating, wanted to show Amanda how far they have come. He proposed to her the same way!
 

On a random Thursday, November 5, 2015, Chris picked up Amanda from work. As soon as she walked into their apartment, she saw a beautiful display of red roses, along with a handmade picture frame of Chris with the words “Will You Marry Me?” going across it. After she said yes, they celebrated by popping a bottle of champagne and calling all of their loved ones to share the news!
 

Vendors:

 

Venue: Falkirk Estate and Country Club

Photographer: BOM Photography

Dress: Memories Bridal by Reem

Cake Designer: Palermo’s Bakery

Floral Designer: Yumila Wedding and Event Floral Design

 

Photo Credit to All: BOM Photography

 

 

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J Ferrara Photography Hudson Valley Wedding Hollowbrook Golf Club

Fall wedding at Hollow Brook Golf Club

Christina and Mike celebrated their late fall Hudson Valley wedding at Hollow Brook Golf Club. According to their photographer, James Ferrara of J. Ferrara Photography, “Christina and Mike are SUCH a fun couple. When we arrived, the girls were all just hanging out, putting on custom temporary tattoos with the couples hashtag. Christina’s dress was gorgeous and fit her perfectly.” Once “getting ready” shots were taken, Ferrara says, “We did a first look on the porch, and then walked and drove around the grounds on a golf cart to do their portraits. It was a chilly day for sure, but these two were troopers and the cold doesn’t show through the images.” However, the cold temps did mean an inside ceremony. “With it being so cold, we had the ceremony inside, which is a first for us, but it worked out just fine. Anthony from Platinum Entertainment DJs kept the party rocking all night, even getting the bride and groom to crowd surf!! It was a terrific day, filled with love and laughter and lots and lots of fun.” Check out this amazing gallery of this amazingly fun wedding to get inspiration for your own special day.
 

Vendors:

 

Photographer: J. Ferrara Photography
 

Photo Booth: iFlick Photo Booth
 

Transportation: Silver Star Limo
 

Bakery: Dream Cakes Bakery
 

Florals: Joseph Richards Florals
 

Officiant: Jeremy Ziegler
 

DJ/Entertainment: Platinum Entertainment DJ’s
 

Reception Venue: Hollow Brook Golf Club
 

Photo Credit to all: J. Ferrara Photography

 

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J Ferrara Photography Abigail Kirsch Tappan Hill Mansion wedding Tarrytown, NY

Elegant Tappan Hill Mansion Wedding in Tarrytown, New York

Emily and Matt had the perfect day for their Hudson Valley fall wedding. Taking place at the majestic Tappan Hill Mansion in Tarrytown, NY, both the bride and the groom were glowing as bright as the sun was for them that day. J. Ferrara Photography elegantly captured every moment. “This was a gorgeous fall wedding at Tappan Hill Mansion in Tarrytown NY,” says Ferrara. “Emily and Matt are both beautiful people that are so in love, it just shows through every image.  Emily’s Hayley Paige dress was stunning, and Matt looked sharp in his tux.” Ferrara recalls the timeline of the day…”We did a first look, followed by portraits, and then a beautiful ceremony outside with the perfect late day sun glow.  A reception followed in the ballroom with lots of dancing and laughs.” Check out the beautiful gallery below to get some inspiration for your wedding day.
 

Vendors

 

Caterer: Abigail Kirsch
 

Dress: Hayley Paige
 

DJ: Generation Events
 

Venue: Tappan Hill Mansion
 

Photographer: J. Ferrara Photography
 

Photo Credit to all: J. Ferrara Photography

 

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