So I guess you might be wondering how I got connected with Sarah and Gordon, and how it came to be that we went all the way to Germany to shoot their Wedding?! Well, years ago, when Sarah and I were kids, her mom and my uncle dated. They lived in Germany and would come home to the states every summer and stay with our family. I remember those summers with such fondness and we always had so much fun showing them around the states and driving up to Lake Michigan to climb the dunes and play in the waves. Sarah and I were buddies and our moms loved to dress us alike in the most hilariously 90's outfits you can imagine (which we reminisced and laughed about the whole weekend!) Well, life happened, and the last time Sarah and I saw each other was when we were 9 years old! 21 YEARS AGO!! But thanks to technology, we have kept in touch over the years. So now, rewind to last year, and her and her mom reached out to me with the idea to come to Germany for her Wedding. To say I was excited was an understatement! I couldn't wait!!! So, without further ado, here are the sneak peek photos, and a slight back story to their beautiful Wedding in Germany!
German culture, when it comes to Weddings, is a little different than here in the States. Many Weddings take place over two days. The first day is for the "official" part - the portion where you sign your marriage license with the government - and this is the day that you use as your anniversary date. For us, we do this months before the Wedding and it's no big deal, but there, this is the big day! The official day! And this day for me was straight out of a movie scene. Our flight was scheduled to land at 10am, with the ceremony starting at noon. We knew it would be tight, but we didn't have much choice with the flight schedule. Well, of course, when you have to be somewhere promptly, your flight is guaranteed to be late. And it was. We were delayed in Dublin and landed 30 min late, putting us at 10:40 when we landed. I was in panic mode. We jogged to baggage claim (of course our bag was dead last to come out), and I was having trouble getting my phone switched over to international calling, making it impossible to get ahold of our driver. I finally got wifi to work in the airport - but only if I stood in the dead center of the lobby - and was able to send him our location for pickup. Thank goodness he found us quickly and we loaded up. At this point it was 11:35 (and we were 20 min. from the town where the Wedding was happening). But....Germany has no speed limits....so we hauled it! We pulled into this tiny village that I swear could have been a village in Epcot, and just like in a movie scene, I see Sarah and her mom, Susanne, waving to us from the street, all dressed up. We pulled in as the bell tower was chiming, exchanged tearful hugs and kisses and went right up the winding staircase and into the ceremony. My heart was racing and I was standing there, in the clothes I had been wearing for 30 hours, shooting a wedding in the most adorable German village with the bells tolling, the breeze gently filling up the warm room, in a foreign language where I had no idea what they were saying but somehow I was still teary eyed. This was moment that was so sureal for me, I will never forget it.
After the ceremony, there was a champagne reception outside to celebrate. Susanne, Sarah's mom, is the kindest, most loving person you will ever meet, and we were finally able to sit down and catch our breath for minute. She got us a wifi hostspot so we could let our kids know we landed safely, got some water in us, and gave us her car to drive back to the hotel so we could change our clothes and freshen up before lunch. And when I say "she let us drive her car" - I mean she lent us her Audi convertible....to drive.....in Germany....for the weekend. Andrew was in HEAVAN! So we were able to go back and grab a quick shower before we headed to a 3:00 lunch reception at a beautiful vineyard overlooking the Rhine River. It was breathtaking! After lunch, we passed out for night at 6pm, and slept for 13 hours. We were exhausted!
Day 2: The church Wedding!
Day two is the church Wedding day! The day started at 9:30 with Sarah getting ready at the Inn (Parkhotel Tillman's in Erbach), in a room just down the hall from ours. From there we headed to Monastery for photos. This Monastery was gorgeous!! And full of amazing photo spots and gorgeous view of the vineyards that were all around this part of Germany. We had so much fun taking photos, joking around and communicating through the language barrier. But you don't need language to capture love <3 It was perfect!! After photos, we headed to church for a 1pm ceremony, followed by champagne on the Rhine River, then dessert, coffee and games at the hotel, followed by dinner, toasts and then dancing into the night! I called it a night by 12:30, but the party went until 4am!
This is the german tradition of sawing a log together.
It was such an honor, and I truly mean honor, that they had me all the way out to Germany to be a part of their Wedding. And not only for the Wedding, we were a part of the family the whole time were there and we felt so loved!! And we made a pact that it would NOT be 20 years before we saw each other again!
Hair and Makeup: Anika Smith
Hotel: Parkhotel Tillman's
Church: Evangelische Johanneskirche
Florals: Kreativ Im Hof