How to Throw a Truly Unique Wedding Reception

Thought this was going to be a “how-to” blog? Well maybe if you could give me some tips on how to achieve what the title states I’d be in better shape! As I mentioned in my last post, time sure does fly. The 2 months mark hit me like a tonne of bricks – “YOU STILL HAVE SO MANY DETAILS TO TAKE CARE OF”. Remember the days when I was ahead of the game and proud of my planning? Well fast forward through the busiest summer of my life, 20 weddings later and here we are! I’m a little embarrassed at how poorly I’ve managed my time, and how I figured I could shoot approx. 20 weddings (and COUNTLESS engagement shoots) in the span of 4 months and have all of those millions of photos edited and sent out to clients before  my own wedding took place. I forgot to factor in a buffer period when I’ll likely go all “bridezilla” for the entirety of October when I’m tying up loose ends and frantically finishing my DIY projects. 

I can just see myself now, spray-painting 160 pinecones gold to use as placeholders:




We actually have made SOME progress in recent weeks: Mom and I sat down and made a flower list – we got right into the nitty-gritty of where things will go, how many arrangements we’ll need etc etc. Everything has been ordered and we’ll see what we get! What a fantastic planning day that was – I’m starting to see the vision come together and the florals that Mom is going to provide will be the most amazing part of the “look”. We are both on the same page with what I’m hoping are “unique” florals. Some more updated inspiration for your viewing pleasure (we’ve now added burgundy to the mix!):








Mom and I are lucky enough to be friends with a very talented costume designer and milliner who is helping to beautify us on the big day. A week ago she came down for a visit and hemmed my dress, worked out a way to bustle it and is making a custom belt that I am SOOO freaking excited about. She designed the most beautiful lace skirt for Mom to wear and is basically SAVING US. We will be eternally grateful. Originally I went to a seamstress with Mom and she was unsure about how to bustle the dress, but Loreen knew what to do almost immediately, and there is no one I would trust more than her to take scissors to my dress!  

This past Friday, Dan & I took the day off of work to book our honeymoon (yay! It’s legit!) and get our ever-so-important Marriage License at City Hall. We’re now working with a new travel agent, and I couldn’t be more happy with her – unlike like the last agent we spoke to who was totally down on everything Paris, and never returned our emails or calls. Our agent Dianne is enthusiastic, prompt and is working hard for us. We’ve literally paid for the entire trip minus spending money, so that feels good! We’ll be starting in Paris, staying in the opera district for 4 nights in a beautiful hotel, and then flying to Cork Ireland. We’ll explore Cork for a day, then do a train tour of the west coast of Ireland for a few days ( insert SQUEALS of excitement!!!) and end up in Dublin for two nights. But more on that later, that’s a whole separate blog post!

Isn’t he handsome? I love this photo and his expression. This was on our way out of City Hall after picking up our Marriage License! What a mush-ball.


So yes, back to throwing a unique wedding reception. Dan and I had the pleasure of photographing a beautiful wedding this past weekend AT our venue…and let me tell you, right down to the stationary, linens, dresses and flowers – it totally looked like what I had planned for our big day. It was surreal to see it being experienced through another couple’s eyes! It gave me mixed emotions at first, I must admit. Was I really so naive to think that my plans and ideas were really THAT unique? Don’t get me wrong, there are going to be noticeable differences, in what the bridesmaids will wear, the choice of centrepieces and some other details but boy was it ever close. It was beautiful! Mom reassured me that what we have planned for decor is actually quite different, but it got me thinking – really how “different” will our day be from a run-of-the-mill wedding at that venue? I’m starting to re-think some of my choices (I’m not happy with our guestbook and would like to find an alternative, as one example). But when the heck will all of this deciding, planning, confirming and executing happen? In-between all of the editing and shooting, that’s when! Although I’m tempted to throw a pity-party about the fact that I won’t have the luxury of basking in all of the planning glory that I though October would be – I’m thankful for all of the work we’ve had this year. It’s allowed us to pay for the wedding of our dreams in full. Seriously, in full. By ourselves. 

We have 3 more weddings to shoot before it’s all about US and our big day, and although I’m stressed for time, I’d also just LOVE for the day to be here so I can marry the man of my dreams. 


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