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Springtime Follansbee Wedding

Real Weddings

A Springtime Wedding in Follansbee, West Virginia

Happy Hump Day, everyone!  Time me!  It’s been just four days since this big day!  It happens every year! I start off so organized and on the ball!  So, I’m happy to report I’ve finished Tiffany and Kristin’s wedding and can’t even wait to show you!  Ashleigh and I shot this second Hannah Barlow Photography wedding last Saturday and celebrated with the happy couple in Follansbee, West Virginia!  It’s not very often I get to do weddings in Follansbee.  I actually think it’s been over 2 years since I’ve done one which is so strange because I live just 20 minutes from the town!  But anyway, this wedding was EVERYTHING I love about my job.  Love, happiness, uniqueness (straight down to the color palette)…and so much more!  So, sit back, relax, make sure you have lots of time to enjoy this one!  Tiffany and Kristin are now Mrs. and Mrs. Newton and I’m SO READY to share and celebrate their marriage with all of you!  Enjoy!

My Grandma Jackson was famous for saying this to her children and to us grandchildren.  She’d even make it a song…”Loooooove one Annoooooothhhhher!”  SING IT!  The details at this wedding were making Ashleigh and I squeal (ok, maybe me more than Ashleigh…but she did have lots to say about them and that’s saying something).  Tiffany is definitely in the running for best dressed in a suit.  Good grief!  That thing had alllll the details AND it was black and white (my favorite, ya know).  That color palette…YES, PLEASE!  I don’t believe I’ve ever photographed that one before!  YAY!  The rings were unique, as well AND rose gold…ummmMmmMmm…YES! YES YES and YES!  Kristin was loving the rustic wood of our formal photo location too!! It was a win for the day all the way around!! That includes the weather…which was supposed to be complete crap but turned out to be perfect (minus the wind).

I knew going into this day it would be full of a lot of laughter and love…and laughter…and more laughing.  As I mentioned in my live video (which you can find on my Facebook Page), Kristin is unlike any person I’ve ever met.  Her spunk and love for life can’t be matched!  Her and I go way back to high school and our softball days.  I can remember squeezing into our friend Mary’s little, Ford, pickup truck (one of those that had the tiny…really tiny…sideways seats) to rush to get food and get back in time for the games.  Kristin was ALWAYS our entertainment.  We laughed then the same way we laughed this day.  Nothing’s changed…except the addition of Tiffany, of course.  I even high fived her (Tiffany) because LET ME TELL YOU…I didn’t think I’d ever see the day Kristin was all dressed up in a white, lace dress on her wedding day…in floral, high heels…getting all particular about wedding details and photos!  It was so amazing and there wasn’t one part of this day that wasn’t enjoyable!

I am switching it up with the blogs a little.  So, brace yourselves!  I’m going to mix up the photos just a bit so please comment and let me know if you like the change or if you want me to go back!  A little of this…a little of that!  I’m “told” this is what you’re supposed to do with a blog…but you know…I’ve never been one to blog the “correct” way! HA!  I blog for you…not for the rules.  So, here are some more amazing details…and props…and the happy couple!  That ring shot (below) is going on my website.  Like…right after I post this!  It’s one of my favorites!

At one point, a bottle of wine appeared!  The sun came out and  I told them to get this party started! So, we laughed, of course, while taking this!

…and it turns out that bottle of wine was meant for me!  Seriously, my couples are THE BEST!  My husband totally wanted to bust open this bad boy last night because he knew it was made by Italians (Kristin comes from a huge Italian family) but I wouldn’t let him! Nope!  This is going in my office right next to my bottle of rum from Sam and Joe! HA!  “Blushing Brides” <— That’s what they named it.  COME ON!  How cute and clever is that?!

Wedding photos were one of their top priorities and I am still so touched they picked me to be their wedding photographer!  So, we just kept on shooting until the family arrived.  It really did throw me off though.  They weren’t worried about a lot of detail shots or getting ready shots because they just wanted to enjoy the morning together before all the craziness.  I was totally fine with it, of course!! Whatever my couples want…they absolutely get!  BUT…that morning…I stood at my car and it just felt all wrong! HA!  You all know I’m an overly organized wedding photographer and with as many weddings as I do, having a system and sticking to it is key.  Well, I literally felt lost and like I was forgetting something! HA!  Starting formal photos and family photos right off the bat was totally weird…but then Ashleigh showed up, then the couple showed up, and I got in the groove and this magic just kept happening!  Later at the reception in Follansbee (these ones above and below were taken at Brooke Hills Park), I looked at Ashleigh and said, “Did I really take that many photos already?!”  I had to switch out the cards after just three hours which is saying something!  I took lots and lots of photos!  How could I not?!

OOooOo man OoOo man…these details!  Feast your eyes on these babies!

Then, we started family photos and the love was flowing from everyone present!  Meet Tiffany’s mom and Kristin’s dad who were two of many who couldn’t resist sharing a smooch with the brides!

Ok, maybe her brother, Michael, could resist!  JUST KIDDING!  I totally told them to do this – “Do something brotherly to her!”  And he did this.  NAILED IT!

Italian families, I tell ya!  They stick together for EVERYTHING!  That includes sticking close to Grandma (who will be 90 years young soon…can you believe it?!).  Fun Fact:  Back when I was a budding photographer and before I had an official business, I photographed her 80th (I think…maybe 85th?) birthday party!! There’s another example of it all coming full circle! I love it so much!! But seriously we’ve got cousins holding hair down in this photo below.  We’ve got brothers ready to grab Grandma and about one dozen other family members standing to my left and right not pictures ready and willing to do whatever we need!  They are just like I remember…close-knit, loving, and so much fun!

And here they all are together for one big, group shot!  They requested a photo all together, of course!  I couldn’t get back far enough (and even tried to stand in a car…on a car…and Tiffany even tried to take the antenna off that was blocking my view…not kidding).  Total face palm moment…in the end, we just moved the car.  Because the keys were already in it! HA!

Tiffany’s mom saved the day!  You all probably know by now I send out a little checklist/reminder 5 days before the wedding.  Among the things on there…make your bed (for pretty getting ready shots) and don’t forget the invitation.  Well, Kristin made her bed…and texted me about it! HA!!  As I mentioned, I wasn’t even going to their house BUT she did forget an invitation!  Jackie was on it though!  She got this out of the car so I could give the happy couple the wedding invitation shot these beautiful details deserved!

And while I was doing that…selfies were happening!

Then, we headed to the lake for just a few more formal photos!  Tiffany DEFINITELY wins the award for best shoes!  I mean…look at them!! I even spit shined them (literally)! HA!  When I got to editing these, I took a good look at Kristin’s tattoo and couldn’t even believe how perfect everything about that bottom photo became!  The shoes, the details, the flowers, the couple…the tattoo!! Wedding photography perfection!  My heart is so happy!

Then, we were off to the ceremony and reception!  Both were held at Vito’s 2 in Follansbee, WV!  Ironically, it’s the same place I photographed Grandma’s birthday party all those years ago!  But before we got ready for the ceremony, I snapped all these detail shots below!  Again, I loved the uniqueness of this day!  Hot sauce (one of my favorites) with a cute little (and appropriate) label were the favors!

More wedding details!

This cake table was SO pretty!  I particularly LOVED the knife and fork!

Then, it was time for the ceremony!  We started off with Tiffany and Kristin walking hand in hand down the aisle.  Also, shoutout to Ashleigh for the photo on the right (below).  I’ve never made her shoot before.  I didn’t need a second shooter for this wedding because the time was about half what we normally shoot…much less people…I knew the couple…it just worked out!  I created a custom package for them that met all their needs and desires…BUT…just for fun…I threw a camera in Ashleigh’s hand and told her to wing it.  It’s the same thing I did to Kari all those years back…HA!  Nothing like throwing them to the wolves, right?!

I actually know Miranda who officiated this wedding!  I didn’t expect to see her so that was a fun surprise!

The laughs just kept on coming!  That photo below (on the right) is one of my favorites from the whole day!

Vows were exchanged (which they hand wrote all organized…and they may have even been laminated, if I remember correctly).  Those beautiful rings were exchanged.  More laughing.  And then the brides shared their first kiss as a married couple!

If you didn’t get the memo, Tiffany was super excited to be married!

I’m serious.  Check out how happy she is! I LOVE IT SO MUCH!

Italians do a lot of things well.  They did a lot of things well at this wedding too!  But look at those peach cookies!! I hear there was schnapps in there too!

So, then the epic champagne opening happened.  My goodness…we were ALL laughing so hard.  You need champagne in your glass before a toast, right?! RIGHT!  So, someone needed to open that.  Kristin was so afraid it would pop.  Tiffany looked a bit concerned, as well.
So, Kristin’s mom came in to try and help.
There was a lot of build up. We were all laughing hysterically.  We were all most definitely cringing.  We all were anxiously waiting to see what would happen.  I, of course, was photographing this madness.
…only for Kristin to realize it was a twist off top! I’m not even kidding.  Talk about anticlimactic! I mean…THIS is Kristin in a nutshell.  EVERYONE was laughing.
So, then the toasts happen!  Stephania and Michael nailed it!  Short…sweet…and from the heart!
Here’s a funny thing about Michale’s speech.  Kristin said he didn’t want to do one.  Mom made him.  I never would have guessed!  He’s charismatic…so much so that he started walking…while talking…right at me.  Picture it!  Here I am…squatting so I don’t block the view (left photo below) and then he comes right at me…quickly.  Honest to goodness, he was so in the moment I thought he’d run over me! HA!  So, I stood up and started walking backwards (having no idea what was behind me) and he just kept talking (and thanking people for coming…which his dad thought he forgot to do) and walking toward me!  I’ll be prepared next wedding just in case another person does this but that was something funny that had never happened to me before!  In all seriousness though, that’s exactly how you’re supposed to make a speech.  Say nice things..thank everyone…work the crowd.  He nailed it!  They both did!
Then, I told them they should do that arm cross thing and take a sip of champagne.  Of course, there was more laughing than drinking!

Then, they shared their first dance to Jesse Decker’s wedding song WHICH I CAN NOT find on iTunes for some reason!! You know I ALWAYS download my couple’s wedding songs and listen to them while I edit and blog (which I’m doing right now off You Tube…click there to hear it).

During the cake cutting, there was more laughing!  Surprised?!  You shouldn’t be at this point!  A wedding day should have all the love and laughter you can squeeze out!  They totally thought they butchered this cake…I’ve seen worse!
Kristin’s closest friends were hoping she’d have a full blown bridal party…but she didn’t.  So, they stole the centerpieces off the tables to make bouquets so they could have this sweet photo!  I love women on a mission!  Kristin said they even threatened to wear matching dresses! HA!
Then, the reception kept going.  No crazy dancing and what not this day.  They had to head to mass shortly after so Tiffany could be confirmed!  I snapped a bunch of these before I left and even got more family photos.
…and while Ashleigh and I were leaving…I saw this sign and HAD to have a photo, of course!

Well, that’s it!  That’s a wrap on the second Hannah Barlow Photography wedding of the year.  I still think this is only my second Follansbee wedding ever and my only one this year!  On a closing note, I can’t even contain my happiness and excitement for these two!  I’d only met Tiffany one other time at our pre-booking consultation but I knew immediately she was a gem AND perfect for Kristin.  Of course, I knew I liked Kristin (that’s something she would say).  She’s one of those people it doesn’t matter how long it’s been since the last time you saw her…it feels like yesterday!  Yep, Tiffany and Kristin are amazing people inside and out.  Their families surrounded them with undying love on their wedding day and that love was evident from the moment I arrived until the moment I left.  They even invited us to stay for dinner and we did.  The food was AMAZING.  Forget that fancy wedding food.  We ate a taco bar, BBQ bar, AND a chicken tender and tots bar and it was AMAZING!  Seriously, we eat a lot of wedding food…we’d rather go this route every time!! It’s nice for a change!  But seriously, back to the couple and their marriage.  These two would do absolutely anything for anyone.  I witnessed it first hand on their wedding day.  A very special moment I’ll always remember this day was when one of Tiffany’s step kids came up to her mid-reception.  He’s a young one.  He asked Kristin and Tiffany (excitedly) if he could stay over night at their house…on their wedding night.  Neither one of them even missed a beat.  Their “deal” was that he had to go to church with them, of course, because they were already planning to go.  Then, they told him he could stay all weekend until Monday.  It was a sweet moment and showed their true colors.  On their wedding night and throughout the rest of the weekend, they were willing to share it.  They did not even hesitate.  THAT is Kristin and Tiffany in a nutshell.  Loving and giving.  I want to hug them all over again!  So, give them HUGE Hannah Barlow Photography digital hugs and give them lots and lots of love on the feed!  They deserve it!

CONGRATS TO THE NEWTONS!

They plan to honeymoon next year in Ireland!  Maybe they’ll take me with them since they’re so giving! HA! Kidding…kind of!  That’s all, folks!

_________________________________________________________

Vendor Shoutouts!

Kristin’s Dress – David’s Bridal

Tiffany’s Tux – Weisbeger’s Clothing Follansbee, West Virginia <— NEW preferred vendor!

Formal Photo Location – Brooke Hills Park

Ceremony/Reception Venue – Vito’s 2

Flowers – Kasey Marino – Follansbee Flower Shop

Cake/Cupcakes – Whisk

Officiant – Miranda Carroll

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