My priority to be more and do more and create an experience they will never forget Capturing their memories in a fun and memorable way is just as important as their beautiful images

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The Gathering Place Fall Wedding | Lakin + Michael

Hello and Happy Friday!  I’ve got a whole lot of beautiful photos to show you (and a lot of words, per the usual) in the next couple of days.  Are you ready?!  I’m ready! Lakin and Michael’s (Mike’s) beautiful, fall, Gathering Place wedding is live!  It was my first time at The Gathering Place on Darlington Lake.  So, before I get too crazy with ALL the Hannah words, please give these two all your Hannah Barlow Photography love! ENJOY!

Collage of fall wedding photos at The Gathering Place in Darlington Lake

Last Saturday, I grabbed up Becca at home and we traveled out of town for this wedding to Darlington, Pennsylvania. Kari was planning on meeting us there.  I was so pumped to see Kari too and to shoot a wedding with her.  She used to second shoot all weddings with me but now she only gets to do the ones close to her home (North-ish of Pittsburgh)…which adds up to be only one or two a year.  We miss her so much so it’s always exciting to see her and see her photos on the blogs again (shoutout to both Becca and Kari because we took SO many photos I can’t keep track of whose is whose). Add in a new venue and it was shaping up to be a good day before we even started.  We pulled in to The Gathering Place and it was just beautiful.  Then, we quickly met up with Aaron Woods (of Aaron Woods Productions) and got right down to wedding details!  Fun fact…those shoes came from Shien and they were so beautiful! 

Navy and orange wedding details

We even got to do groom details!  If these colors don’t set the tone for a fall wedding, I don’t know what will!

Navy and orange groom wedding details

I absolutely know I had my nervous t-rex arms activated after details.  HA!  We were starting to run a weeeeeee bit behind and needed to get Lakin in her gorgeous dress (it was one of Becca’s favorites to date).  We had some rain and drizzle in the forecast on top of racing a timeline where the men would be arriving for their photos…so…I was a little nervous sweaty but holding it together and boy was it worth it. 

Black and white wedding photos of bride getting hair and make up done

BECAUSE…Feast your eyes on these beauties! Lakin got ready with the help of her Mom!

Black and white photos of bride getting ready with mother of the bride's help

Then, Lakin wanted to do a first look with some of her best friends! Cue all the friend emotions!

Bride's best friends see her for the first time in a first look

The mom’s got in on it too!

Mothers give the bride a hug on porch

Time for the ladies’ photos! I was a squealing machine…especially when the wind whipped that veil!

Bride laughs as veil flies in the wind

I still can’t put my finger on what I’d call this color but it’s unique…and you all know I love having something new to photograph! Also, Lakin’s sister’s dress was velvet and I ADORE velvet dresses! Not that that is too important for the blog but I do love a velvet dress!

Bridesmaids in burnt orange dresses pose with bride in lace dress in front of orange cabin

We added the men back in there!

Bridesmaids and two groomsmen cheer with bride

We got the ladies back in hiding since we were getting close to the men arriving and then we went inside and photographed the reception hall.  HUGE shoutout, praise and hallelujah bows to Jacob and Jon (above) who became the de facto wedding planners and helped me get things set up to be photographed (and generally kept the day rolling by organizing, fixing bouquets, fetching key members when I needed them, etc.). I ADORE AND APPRECIATE YOU BOTH!

The Gathering Place wedding reception details

The groom’s brother may be deployed overseas and unfortunately couldn’t make it…BUT they were everywhere. You’ll see!

Cardboard cut outs of men in military uniform at wedding

Then, the men arrived!  The one thing about my second shooters and team is that they don’t have big opinions on things and all of them are super laid back and nothing like me (Type A control freak, yes?)!  So, when they DO have opinions on things…I listen.  And Kari had big opinions about this building and wall.  She was right…it matched the aesthetic of this wedding JUSTTTTTTTTTT right.

Groom and groomsmen in navy tuxes pose in front of orange barn.

A group hug for the men and then Mike pulled out the model stops and I was SHOCKED and SO pumped up! Look at him go…

Groomsmen in navy tuxes hug groom

It was definitely crunch time and we made it! Now, time for the ceremony! This is such a unique set up for a ceremony and I loved that the guests (and the groom) had a nice long time to really appreciate the bride coming down the aisle.

Brides walks out of cabin and down the wedding aisle

Here comes the bride…from Kari’s angle!

Guests stand as bride walks down the aisle

Kari literally booted me out of the photo…can you believe it?! For sake of a photo like this? I’m A OK with it! Isn’t this view breathtaking?!

wide angle of wedding ceremony by lake

Mike’s brothers were live on Facetime to watch the wedding ceremony!

Deployed brothers watch wedding from iPad being held by dad

It sure was a beautiful ceremony!

Wedding ceremony collage at the gathering place at Darlington Lake.

And THEN…it happened. What happened? Well, Lakin asked some of her BEST friends to be the officiants. They took that job very seriously. I even saw them (AND photographed) the practice earlier in the day (see below)…so let’s rewind the day for a second, if you will!

Groomsmen in grey pjs reads notes

Back to the present…and they STILL (just lookin’ at you Jacob) got the name wrong when pronouncing the couple. The great news? Kari, Becca and I…that’s right all three of us…got allllll the angles so Jacob will never…EVAAAAAAAA…be able to live this down. The other great thing? Everyone laughed. I got permission to positively shame and roast him in this blog too! HA! So, here’s the “moment”. I said we should make a tik tok out of it! But honestly…the “wrong name” sounds bad. He just said her maiden name instead of her new married name (she’d only been a Reese for a SECOND…we can let it slide, yes?)

Couple is pronounced man and wife

Nonetheless, the photos are hilarious! Uh oh…wrong name!

Bride laughs as officiant turns red over embarrassment

All in good fun…the day wasn’t ruined! It left us with great memories to laugh over! So, after family formals…we got RIGHT down to bridal party because for some reason…my brain shorted out…and I didn’t ever think about the the fact that the sun was setting earlier these days and an overcast day means even darker conditions so we had to hurryyyyyyyyyyy! First up…bridal party!

Bridal party stands together for group photo in front of orange trees

Shoutout to videographer Aaron Woods for being one of the best side kicks in this kind of scenario. He’s so laid back and he’s so chill and just goes with the flow and that meant tons of coverage for the both of us! I do NOT apologize in advance…nope…I’m so proud with the absolutely load of photos we got! It’s a lot of photos so here we go!

Bride and groom pose for wedding photos in green grass and orange leaves

…and that’s just a small bit of that bunch. To the next location!

Bride and groom hold hands and walk past the Gathering Place

Presenting to you…some more…very fall photos! There are SO many options at The Gathering Place for photos. You all know me…I like to think outside the box and that’s just what we did!

Bride and groom pose by lake while veil blows in wind

…and to the next place!

Groom holds bride's train as they walk walk away

You know…I’m not sure how I’ll pick favorites from this wedding!

Bride and groom post on cabin porch

Once again, Kari had big opinions. She loved these doors earlier in the day and she wasn’t about to let me forget! It was the perfect location to end bride and groom portraits AND…with a dip!

Bride and groom hold hands and pose in front of barn doors

Once the couple was announced, we went right into all the formal reception things…complete with a surprise speech from afar from Michael’s brothers that made even me tear up (being a military wife of three deployments and 22 years of service…it ALWAYS gets to me).

wedding reception overlooks a lake through windows at dusk

Then, after dinner (from Medure’s which is always 10/10 amazing), the couple started to mingle and then we snatched them up for a gazebo photo. This was a photo Lakin requested…and we put a full moon twist on it!

Groom dips bride at night under full moon in gazebo

THEN, it was time to let loose and let them party!! And they did NOT miss a beat! No pun intended!

Guests dance at wedding reception

Whewwwwwww…that was a long one but I couldn’t help it!! Lakin and Mike have been such an easy couple! There was so much I had to leave out for length or you would have been here reading this for a long long long time. From dad first looks to first touches and shots prior to the ceremony to Jacob, Jon and the bridesmaids helping fix bouquets and dresses…you name it. There was MORE and IS MORE in their full gallery! I can NOT wait to see Aaron’s full film (teaser on Aaron Woods Productions page). THIS…was quite a day! Give the Reeses’ (NOT the Fatulas)…all your Hannah Barlow Photography love. They’re MARRIED! Their fall, Gathering Place wedding is complete!

Disclaimer: Hannah Barlow Photography blogs only represent a small portion of photos the couple actually receives in their private gallery.  The blogs are meant to highlight favorite photos and favorite moments of the session/wedding day and do not represent an entire gallery.


Venue – The Gathering Place at Darlington Lake

Wedding Coordinator – Events 143 – Kate

Bride’s Gown – Bridal Beginning

Bridesmaids’ Attire – Azazie

Men’s Attire – Alfani Suits

Hair – Courtney Ross

Makeup – Paige McCabe

Florist – Theresa Zugay

Cake/Desserts – Sweets by Annette and Carlie (Cake), Nancy Kizemchak (Cookies)

DJ – DJ Bruce Matteo

Catering – Medures

Transportation Bus – McCarter Tours

Stationary – Truly Engaging

Officients – Jacob Durila and Jonathan Guaetta (Friends)

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My priority to be more and do more and create an experience they will never forget Capturing their memories in a fun and memorable way is just as important as their beautiful images





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