Davina + Daniel

First, let me get the obvious out of the way: Yes, their names really are Davina and Daniel! I have to admit, I thought their first email might be a joke, but in fact, they and their wedding were very real! We were obviously very curious to meet the couple who share our names, and we had the opportunity when we photographed their engagement session in New York City last spring. During this first "date," we  learned that the four of us also share a strong love of sushi, travel, and our families. We also learned that it is very strange for us to direct a couple using our own names, but we somehow managed to get used to this by their wedding day (and we do expect this to have been a once-in-a-lifetime thing!) Fast forward a few months, and we were all on the French Riviera to celebrate the union of the other Davina + Daniel. Festivities began days before the wedding with parties in Monaco, all leading up to one simply breath-taking event. Davina, Daniel, and close to 300 guests gathered at Davina's family's gorgeous home in Latte, Italy, near the French border and overlooking the Mediterranean sea. The whole day was flawless; stunning, really, from beginning to end, but it was the sense of togetherness that really left an impression on us. Among the olive trees, and with the salty sea breeze in the air, this wedding truly felt like a celebration and there was no doubt about it: these two families who came together that day absolutely adore one another.

After a private and emotional bedeken, sweet and simple ceremony, and a lively outdoor horah among the olive trees, guests enjoyed a classic Italian feast at one long table in the garden (remember when I said there were nearly 300 guests?!). Traditional Napolitan musicians provided entertainment, and then traditional Catalan dancers escorted Davina and Daniel, followed by all the guests, to an epic dance party further down on the property. It was almost 4am when we left, and although the party was being shut down, guests seemed ready to keep it going!

It was a tremendous opportunity for us to share in such a beautiful celebration with Davina and Daniel. A shout-out goes out to the incredible Guendalina, Sophie, and the whole team who pulled off every little detail to perfection, and of course to Davina and Daniel for entrusting us to capture it all.

Chatti + TJ

If Chatti and TJ's story were a fairytale, it would go something like this: Once upon a time, there was a boy and there was a girl. He was of Italian ancestry and she was Cambodian. They lived 5 miles from each other in Colorado, yet their paths never crossed there. One day, the boy decided to pursue new career opportunities in the far away land of Cambodia. A few miles away, she was breaking the same news to her family. It was in this far away land that boy finally met girl and - you guessed it! - they fell in love. They decided to marry in another far away land, Italy, where she had always dreamed of having her wedding and where he had family history. It was an event filled with love, laughter, and song. And, of course, they lived happily ever after. When Chatti, a wedding photographer herself, asked if we would photograph her wedding in Italy, we could not say "yes" fast enough. Luckily Chatti and TJ shared our enthusiasm, and less than a day after her initial email, we officially became their wedding photographers. They chose a classic Italian villa, nestled in the hills just outside the historical town of Cortona, as the setting for their wedding week. Since the two have travelled extensively and lived abroad throughout most of their relationship, they have built up an international group of friends who have become a family. A dozen of these family members not only joined Chatti and TJ in their wedding festivities, but rallied together to arrange flowers, hang banners, and even officiate the ceremony. It was a true labor of love.

Speaking of love, we also fell in love with these two sweet individuals, as well as their incredible group of guests. It was with open arms (literally!) that they greeted us on the first day and they never made us feel like we were any less than family. Despite a bit of rain during dinner that forced everyone to retreat to the dining room, the day truly did unfold, appropriately enough, like a fairytale.

Thank you Chatti and TJ for including us in your wedding plans. We loved every moment of our time in Tuscany with you and your wonderful family.

The Vendors Venue: Villa Ruffignano Catering: Marcella of Villa Ruffignano Dress: Marisa Styling: By the bride and executed by her wonderful friends Florals: Annalisa Banelli of La Bottega delle Idee

Janice + Jason

We have had the pleasure of getting to know Janice and Jason (the J's) through Jason's sister MJ and his brother-in-law Mike (the M's). The M's are two of the most important people to Daniel and I (the D's), so we the D's knew that because we love the M's, we would also love the J's (and we do!). On their wedding day we quickly learned that we are but two names on a very, very long list of people who also love the J's. From the start of the day to the end of the night, their posse of friends and family enthusiastically participated in surrounding them with a crazy amount of high energy. They ambushed them at the exit of the church, cheered them on during the limo ride drink-chugging, and every one of them took part in an epic dance-off... not surprising considering  one of the groomsmen is a member of the Jabbawockeez!

The J's incorporated their shared passions for beer, their cockerspaniel Fuji, and Star Wars into their wedding; my personal favorite was their "May the J's be with you" Instagram hashtag. Not only do the J's share these quirky interests and inside jokes with each other, but their friends and families are very much a part of the stories that led to their ongoing antics. Throughout the day I was reminded of how precious it is to not only find the person who brings out the best version of yourself, but also to find an entourage of friends who enrich your life. The J's have that in spades, and their wedding was a celebration of just that.

The M's have enriched our lives since the moment we met them, and we are so grateful to have been included in the J's circle with such warm and open arms. Thanks for sharing your wedding day with us, you two. "This will be a day long remembered." (that's a Star Wars quote... which I'll admit I had to Google!)

 

The Vendors Venue: Hilton Waterfront Huntington Beach Church: Our Lady Queen of Angels Coordinator: Simply Sweet Weddings Photobooth Rental: Photobooth Supply Co. Videographer: Film Foto Fusion DJ: SGM Events Cake: Kings Hawaiian Bakery Hair: Eileen Alvarez Make-up: Beauty by TK

Megan + Max

Megan and Max knew they wanted a destination wedding, the only problem was they could not find a location that felt quite right. When they could not settle on the perfect Caribbean resort, they thought that perhaps they were not looking in the right place. And then Ireland came to mind. With ample golfing for Max and beautiful scenery to suit Megan, the country that neither had ever visited suddenly hit the mark. And just like that, a beach wedding turned into an Irish castle wedding. Nothing could have prepared Daniel and I for the stunning landscapes and rustic charm of Ireland. Springfield castle, complete with resident peacocks, was definitely one of the most unique locations we have photographed yet... even without any ghostly encounters (much to my disappointment!). On the wedding day, I was happy to play double duty and jump in to do Megan's makeup - a real testament to this bride's low-key nature! Megan and Max chose to have their ceremony in the former dungeon, which happens to be the oldest part of the castle, dating back to the 13th century. The space's dark and moody feel was the perfect contrast to Megan and Max's joy; shared by everyone in attendance. Following the ceremony, Megan and Max's intimate group of 15 gathered in the parlor for traditional Irish mead (quite tasty, we thought!) and then feasted on a meal prepared entirely of local - and delicious! - ingredients.

A visit to Ireland simply would not have been complete without a tour of the stunning cliffsides the country is known for, so the day after the wedding, we all piled into a bus and headed off to explore the Dingle Peninsula. With breathtaking views consisting of rolling hills, cliffs, ocean, sheep, and the classic dry stone walls, we could not resist the temptation to grab a few more portraits of Megan and Max. Keen to be a part of it, they literally changed in the back of the bus and trekked through wind and lumpy grass to give us just a few more images!

Thank you, Megan and Max, for allowing us to join your intimate group of 15, for braving the elements for a few more portraits, and for trusting us with the task of capturing your wedding weekend memories.

Magali + Stefan

On this blog, I get the opportunity to express how special the couples we photograph are, and how much we value the bond that we build with them. This post is particularly unique and special to me, as I have been building a bond with this bride for almost 27 years. Magali and I are cousins, but we are so much more than that; we have been constant friends since we were born. Our parents tell us that we traded our pacifiers and got into trouble together (like the time we climbed onto the kitchen table and ate butter), and our friendship continued throughout our teenage years and into adulthood. I probably share more embarrassing memories and inside jokes with her than with anyone else in the world, and we know each other better than almost anyone. So when Stefan came around when we were just 18, I wasn't too sure what to make of him... he had a lot to live up to! But it wasn't too long before this goofy and silly little man made his way into our hearts too, and it's been pretty hard to imagine one of them without the other ever since. It is obvious to anyone who meets these two: they are simply perfect for each other. With Stefan, Magi is the person I have always known and loved: vivacious, happy, and a worthy opponent to her new husband in the 'silly and goofy' category. Stepping back from photography for their special day was a tough task for me, but I knew their wedding memories would be in Daniel's capable hands, as well as those of our associate photographers at Grey Sparrow, Marie-Christine and Jean-Michel. So on a cold winter's day in Montreal, Magali and Stefan stuck to their guns and lived out their dream of an outdoor winter ceremony. Stefan had us all laughing and crying as he shouted out his vows, consisting of lyrics from their favorite songs, for the entire park to hear. The band Minuit, featuring both my father and Magali's, made their second appearance in two years at the reception (the last time was at our wedding in Mexico), and their music ensured that guests never left the dance floor. With MC and JM there, Daniel was more than willing to put his camera down and join the party. As a final personal, musical touch, my sister Arielle and Magali's father led the couple's first dance with a sweet rendition of the Civil Wars' I've Got This Friend.

It was an honor to stand along side one of my best friends as she married a man who we just cannot imagine her without, and I know that it was a pleasure for Daniel, MC and JM to document it. Thanks for being in our lives, Magali and Stefan. We love you so very much!

You can browse through some of our favorite moments from their wedding by clicking on the arrows above. Many of these images were made by Marie-Christine Genero and Jean-Michel Lacombe of Grey Sparrow studio.

 

The Vendors:

Venue: Parisian Laundry Catering: Java U Coordination: Elyna of Unity Weddings Make-up Artist: Tiffany of Victoria Tiffany Flowers: Mother of the bride Cake: Ashley, Friend of the bride Band: Minuit Dress: Anne-Jean Michel Bride's Shoes: Kate Spade Groom's suit: Penguin Groom's shoes: Vans