Anna and Graham were married on an especially beautiful day in late October. They had been together since their senior year at Wake Forest in 2013 when some mutual friends threw a party just so they could meet. Although it took them a little bit to start talking that first night, everything seems to have worked out just fine. These two are truly so well matched–the essence of compatibility.
The girls all got ready at Anna’s childhood home on Queens Road. I love when Anna saw her dad for the first time. She had just descended the gorgeous spiral staircase into her living room for her “first look” with her dad. As soon as he saw her, stunned, he just said, “Oh, Anna. Oh, Anna.” When she came to him, he put his face in her hands. It was such a tender moment between a dad and his little girl, after which my shirt came in handy for clearing my tears off of the back of my camera. It seems I shed a few tears on every wedding day. Good to get it out of the way early, I suppose.
The fellas got started at the Ritz Carlton in uptown Charlotte. Once they were dressed, they headed to Myers Park Country Club for some pre-ceremony portraits. The girls all showed up at MPCC soon after for their own portraits, having ridden the trolley from Anna’s parents’ house just down the road. This was where Anna and Graham had their own first look, and I adore the shots we captured of the two on them admiring one another in front of the trolley, the whole wedding party looking on. The high five exchanged at the end was particularly adorable.
Everyone rode the trolley from MPCC to St. Gabriel’s Church. This was the church in which Anna had grown up, and the man who would be marrying her and Graham was Father Frank O’Rourke, a family friend since before Anna was born. The ceremony was perfection. I remember watching Graham in the moments just before heading down the aisle. He made his way down the line of groomsmen, shaking hands with each of them, and I could feel how much he valued their involvement in this day. This is how the whole day felt—as though a few hundred people had come together to stand solid with these two in their union. There was such a sense of community.
The reception was a total blast. The music was provided by Java Band, and as they tend to do, the band kept the dance floor packed. The father of the bride surprised me with his, um, enthusiastic dance moves. When the band started playing “Hey Ya!” by OutKast, he flew into action, yelling “This is my favorite song!” as he bounced up and down like a bunny. And I guess it really was, because everyone knew how much he loved it. He was immediately joined on the dance floor by his wife and three children. While I was busy capturing the dancing hilarity, my second shooter, Kailey, was outside taking shots of the boys puffing on cigars, and these images are some of my favorites from the night. This is one of the reasons it is so crucial to have a second photographer—had Kailey not been there, I’d have missed something so special between Graham and his boys.
The sugar magnolia-themed cake was stunning, but of course it was, having been created by the absurdly talented Kathy Allen. Every time I see another one of her cakes I swear it is my new favorite. And they are all as delicious as they are awe inspiring. When the night was drawing to a close, Anna and Graham shared one last smooch under a bubble-gun salute, then climbed into a golf cart and sped—well, puttered—off into the night.
For their honeymoon, Anna and Graham went to South Africa, starting in Cape Town, and then taking two separate safari jaunts. I can only imagine how much fun they had fulfilling Anna’s lifelong Africa dream.
Ceremony Location: St. Gabriel Catholic Church
Reception Location: Myers Park Country Club
Wedding Planner: Sami Roberts of Something Perfect
Floral Design: Flowers from the Cellar
Cake Artist: Kathy Allen Cakes
Band: Java Band
Make-up Artist: Brandy Conley of Woo Skincare and Cosmetics
Hair Artist: Mandi English
Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Bill Levkoff
Tuxes: The Black Tux
Transportation: Trolleys of the Carolinas
Reception Lighting: Wink Lighting
An enormous thanks to Kailey of Kailey Faith Photography for her beautiful contributions to Anna & Graham’s wedding collection.
Be sure to check out images from Anna & Graham’s engagement session at the historic Wing Haven Gardens HERE