Shaela and Dustin’s wedding day was nothing short of absolutely spectacular. These people have a tribe that they have surrounded themselves with from family to new and old friends. It’s so apparent in all of these photos that despite what nerves they might have had before their wedding, that quickly dissipated as the love and encouragement that they received took its place.
Every wedding party is a little bit different. Some are more serious, some like to party, and some are all laughs and giggles. The groomsmen crew fall to the latter half of these descriptions since most of them went and graduated from college together. Dustin picked such a fun and supportive group of men to stand with him during his big day. But there were a fair share of shenanigans which made Dustin’s and Shaela’s wedding day that much more memorable which you’ll see below.
One of the outstanding details besides the sharp blue suits and mahogany brown shoes that the gents wore was the boutonniere and how well it was made. Gold and cream tucked into a cone that ALREADY HAD A PIN BUILT ONTO IT! Let’s seriously take a moment to thank God that these were the absolute easiest boutonnieres to put on and that they will also last forever. Brides and grooms, take note.
Like I said, every group is a little different so while I take the groom away for a few solo portraits while everyone else files out to get their portrait taken, I can usually gauge the crowd during these moments. In between the cat calls behind me to Dustin and the encouragement to chug the rest of the Jameson that I suggested Dustin take a small drink of (he only had a bit Shaela–promise!) I knew it was going to be fun.
Most of the men that Dustin graduated with are wrestlers or fellow sportsmen. So while not everyone grappled on the mat, most had so I wanted to help them incorporate that into their images. I also suggested that Dustin be picked up and tossed around. While he didn’t go flying, it seems that a good goosing (or worse) when all of boys picked him up.
They then frolicked down the hill in the backyard, avoiding dog poop, and holding hands in the most ridiculous way.
Then it was off to see Shaela, who was prepping at her sister’s house just a few blocks away. While the atmosphere was much quieter and subdued, no wrestling or pedialyte in sight, there was still a prewedding day buzz. So, while the girls continued prepping their hair and makeup, thanks to Shaela, her sister, and a few other master’s in the bridal party, I took to the details.
Shaela is lovely and the dress that she chose to wear complemented her body type, her natural beauty and her quiet sense of elegance and practicality. The details were ornate and made to match the decor of the wedding. She chose to wear flats due to the wedding being outdoors and at The Barn on 231, which I think is an excellent choice since there is a bit of walking that has to be done to get around. Her bouquet had a small but personal piece of jewelry that her mother helped to intwine into it, which was a heart shaped necklace that Shaela had given her as a child. Her twin sister and maid of honor also carried a bouquet that complemented Shaela’s as well. The photos with the girls was fun and while I try to get everyone to emote genuinely, it did take a little sass from the Queens Bey, RiRi, and Britney to really bring that out.
Despite the small sprinkles that happened well before the ceremony, we were able to get the rest of the group photos done beforehand and Dustin and Shaela managed to not see one another at their very adamant requests. The bridal crew also were such a help to do any last minute decorations, errands, and anything else they could do to ensure that the Kult Wedding Day was a hit. The ceremony was large but intimate and took place out in nature, complemented by flowing drapes, old doors, and their nearest and dearest family and friends.
After we finished up with portraits, I asked Shaela and Dustin to take a short (and bumpy) ride back a bit beyond the farm to enjoy the first few moments of being together. I also suggest to my brides and grooms that even if the party is in full swing and motion, take 5 minutes together alone on your wedding day. The last person you get to really spend any time with is your spouse and while it seems silly because you’re together for the latter half of the day, you’re also entertaining, dancing, schmoozing, and catching up — all while precariously balancing your friends and very recent marriage. So, thankfully, our wagon ride trip didn’t take too long and I was able to capture a few of the bumpy but sweet moments that these two shared.
Everything else went off without a hitch (what a weird expression) and we ended their evening with sparklers.
I was able to break down my gear afterward and enjoy some of their wedding day as well at the end as Dustin is a close friend of mine.
I wish them all the happiness and while they have been together for over 7 years, their lives are just truly beginning. Much love to you both and thanks for having me out. I am so happy for you two.
Suit: Men’s Warehouse