Emily and Brett met in Nashville in 2014. They were immediately interested in one another, and by the end of their first date, they were nestled in a corner booth, listening to live music and holding hands. Fast forward a few years and Brett is hiding an engagement ring in the closet for Emily to find when she goes looking for a new lightbulb. With that part taken care of, the two brunched with family at a local Nashville eatery and then turned their attention to planning their nuptials.
We started our day at the home of Emily’s mother, Catherine. Her condo is located in a gorgeous spot in historic Myers Park, right near Queens University. Because Emily and Brett wanted to have their first look in a scenic and intimate spot, Catherine’s home made perfect sense as the getting ready location for both bride and groom. Before my second photographer and I parted ways to shoot the guys and girls, we took Emily and Brett for their first look—always one of my favorite moments to document—on the central lawn in front of Catherine’s condo. The long, trailing ribbons from Emily’s bouquet (created by Lily Greenthumbs) were so lovely moving softly in the breeze as Brett approached. As all couples seem to do in this perfectly unscripted moment of a wedding day, Emily and Brett nailed their first look. There was the perfect amount of oooh’s and ahhh’s over each other’s appearance with a few tender kisses for good measure.
Once we completed our pre-ceremony portraits, the bridal party hopped on a trolley and made their way to the ceremony site, Covenant Presbyterian Church. If you’re not familiar with the church, I’ll just tell you that it’s one of the prettiest churches in Charlotte. The exterior doors alone are a backdrop against which I could shoot all day, and then there’s the sanctuary, where the wooden arches and stained glass windows are a thing to behold. Perhaps my favorite part of the ceremony was when the officiant asked Emily and Brett to face their gathered friends and family and spent five minutes or more describing how the couple met and why they worked so well together. It was a sweet and funny interlude, and it lent the ceremony a huge amount of heart and warmth from the get-go.
From there, it was on to another fantastic venue for the reception: The Terrace at Cedar Hill. The guests enjoyed a cocktail hour on the side patio, complete with fabulous views of Charlotte’s skyline, and then made their way into the reception area for the bride and groom’s first dances. There was a break for dinner, and then dancing, dancing, dancing. The band was Attraction, and it was the first time I’d ever worked with them. The music was seriously awesome, and I remember being totally blown away by the lead singer, who just killed it. I hope I get to work with them again sometime soon.
As the night drew to a close, Emily changed out of her wedding gown and into a blue floral dress for the exit. She and Brett hopped into a limo and were off to their honeymoon at the Old Edwards Inn in Highlands, NC. Emily has always loved the hotel, and it’s where she had her bachelorette party. This is a mini-moon, a three-night trip full of hiking and good eating, and it will be followed by a longer honeymoon trip for their one-year anniversary.
I’m so happy I got to spend this extraordinary day and night with Emily, Brett, and their delightful crew of family and friends. It was a celebration full of love and humor, and it was an honor to be a part of it.
Wedding Coordinator: Sasha Thumann of Jackie Fogartie Events
Wedding Venue: Covenant Presbyterian Church
Reception Venue: The Terrace at Cedar Hill
Hair and Makeup: Megan Clouse of Blushing Hair and Makeup
Floral Design: Lily Greenthumbs
Cake Artist: Suarez Bakery
Catering: Best Impressions
Bride’s dress: Antonio Gual
Bridesmaid’s Dresses: The Bride Room
Groom’s Tux: Brooks Brothers
Thanks to Emily of Emily Renee Photography for contributing her beautiful images.
Be sure to check out Emily and Brett’s engagement session at the Duke Mansion in Charlotte, NC HERE.