I’M BACK! That’s right! I originally wasn’t going to come back into the office until tomorrow but this couple has waited longer than ANY OTHER COUPLE in Hannah Barlow Photography history for their engagement session and I can’t stand it…they’ve waited 11 days. That’s right and it’s been long enough! It may not seem like a long time to many of you (especially if you’re new here) BUT that’s just so long for me. I was on vacation this last week and this seriously amazing and sweet couple was A OK with waiting…so I just had to get it out and posted today. SO, please give Melanie and Justin ALL your love because their pink inspired engagement session at Oglebay is on the blog RIGHT now!
These two are having their wedding at Oglebay next year so it was fitting we did their engagement photos there too! Not to mention they tell me this is one of their favorite places AND was also one of their first date locations!! I MEAN…you all know how much I love a good story and these two have QUITE THE STORY. “It was all meant to be” could be said over and over and over again for these two…including me meeting them AT Oglebay’s wedding showcase LAST year (2022)…before they were even engaged. My booth was parked right next to DJ Brian Oliver’s booth (who is also their wedding DJ now). They got to meet both of us and months later, after they were engaged…they reached out and booked us!
This is usually and traditionally the part of the blog I tell you all about them (cliff notes version) and talk about how good of a photo they take (but really..look at them). THEY, however, filled out my couple fun fact survey like no one ever has and gave me the best details AND story…so, I’ll let them tell you…word for word. This is how their engagement went down. It’s important to note that Melanie had said to a friend years ago that she wanted to find someone who liked the beach and rollercoasters (among other things)…THAT is definitely important to the engagement story. HERE WE GO…AND I quote…
“In August of 2022, Justin and Melanie planned a trip with friends to one of their all time favorite places, Cedar Point. They arrived at Hotel Breakers, began the day at the beach & pool, and headed back to the room to get ready for dinner. They ate dinner in the resort at Tomo Hibachi. After dinner, their friends expressed interest in going to the TGI Fridays bar for a couple of drinks. Melanie was not trilled as she would prefer to go walk on the beach.
She whispered to Justin, “can we please not go to the bar?”
He replied, “Okay, how about we take a walk on the beach, then we can meet our friends at the bar later.”
Melanie agreed and they headed to the beach. It was a beautiful summer evening on Lake Erie. They walked down the shore for a while before Justin said “Oh no, what is that??”
Melanie not paying attention (of course) said “What? The Jet Skis? Are they new??
Justin said “No, don’t you see the lit-up sign?”
Melanie sees the “Marry Me” sign and proceeds cry and hyperventilate in shock and excitement. The moment she waited for was finally here.
They arrive at the “Marry Me” sign surrounded by candles and rose pedals. Justin recites his speech and gets down on his knee for the big “Will you Marry Me?”
Melanie cries out “yes”! Easiest decision she’s ever made. The coolest part was the riders on the WindSeeker watched and cheered for them as they descended from the ride.
She then waves to the photographer and notices a man in disguise taking a video.. quickly realizing, it was her step-dad Eric. Then comes her mom, Justin’s family, and friends who had been hiding the entire time. The night ended lots of hugs, tears, and celebrating on the beach.
Little did she know, Justin was planning this for months.”
I MEAN!…I MEANNNNNN!!! Come on…I’m telling you, when I was reading this this morning, I was having a total Hannah moment. I went from squealing to “NO WAY” to “COME ONNNN”…this is all fairy tale stuff in real life! I can’t say it enough…I have the coolest job EVER! FOR REAL! My goodness, they take a great photo too AND their wedding colors will be light pink, mauve and light purple (much like their engagement session). I can’t wait to see it all come together!
This session was less than 24 hours before I left for vacation. I did give the couple the option to opt out and do it at a later date so they didn’t have to wait (I know how the excitement can be) but they were totally sweet and were willing to wait and cheered me on to enjoy vacation. So, when these photos show the sweetness, I’m telling you it’s legit and they are two sincere and kind humans!
On our way to some stone wall areas, we stopped at this little place. I’ve never actually taken photos in this little nook by Oglebay’s mansion but I’m digging it!
THIS one below..is definitely a favorite of mine! WEBSITE MATERIAL RIGHT HERE!
Melanie and Justin had done their research and scoured my feeds (which I LOVE) and found some photos they liked vibe-wise. Stone was a huge part of that! I knew I could make this little area look great again with lots of options!
Little did I know, they’d make one of my favorite (but most difficult to look natural) poses AMAZING!! AND in black and white…
It was SUCH a relaxed session. Hair, makeup, outfits…10/10…it all makes sense though. They said they are going for “grand but also cozy” for their wedding vibe and after meeting and photographing these two it makes SO MUCH SENSE to me!
AND…when you can walk on out of your session with all the angles and they’re ALL keepers? It’s going to be an absolutely unforgettable wedding! I JUST KNOW IT!
I’m so so so happy I got this session up and posted! Huge shoutout to Bongiorno.bella (find her over on IG) for the stunning makeup! Happy Monday, everyone!! I hope you’re enjoying it!