Brianne and Mark thought they could escape September hurricane weather in Florida, but believe it or not – our scheduled elopement day was a complete wash because even in Maine we still get effects from the hurricanes down south.
With the extreme winds and rain forecasted for their outdoor elopement day, we all decided it would be best to shift to the following day. Since it was just the two of them, they had the flexibility to reschedule to a new day. And fortunately, I had availability in my schedule to make that happen and I was able to share their elopement experience in the morning, before having a second one later that afternoon. That is a big perk of elopements – since you’re not accommodating other guests you have so much flexibility for your timing, the activities you want to do, and creating a day tailored to you.
We all met at Jordan Pond in Acadia National Park, and they led us to a spot they had picked out for their ceremony. It was tucked off of the walking path to provide a little more privacy and better views of Bubble Rocks in the background. Fortunately the rain had passed, but the extreme winds stuck around. The gale force winds ripping off of Jordan Pond, created white caps on the water making it look like the ocean. It was cold, it was windy, but it was spectacular. Mother Nature’s forceful surprises truly added to the adventure.
In true elopement fashion, their officiant Rev. Erika Hewitt, stopped two hikers passing by before we got started to ask if they would be witnesses to this marriage. They graciously agreed and we got started with their meaning ceremony.
In lieu of their family being present with them, their parents wrote letters for Bri and Mark to read to each other. Their eyes filled with tears hearing the kind words their family had for them. I personally loved this idea so much. I think it’s an incredible way to include loved ones and add even more sentiment to your elopement experience.
In addition, prior to their trip to Maine, Rev. Erika gave them the suggestion to fill a jar with little collections throughout their trip. The jar was filled with stones from the shore, leaves from their walks, blooms from her bouquet, and best of all – a whisker from their beloved kitty who didn’t make the trip to Maine from Florida. This one pulled at cat mama heart strings! Now, in addition to their photographs and heirloom albums, they have this tiny little jar filled with sentiment to help remember their elopement trip.
What ways will you add sentiment into your special day? Scroll through the photos for some inspiration!
Elopements • January 15, 2023
Luxury meets adventure in Acadia National Park… This glamorous couple chose outfits that were still similar to your traditional wedding attire. Nick was in a full suit and tie with a boutonniere, and Amber wore a long sleeve white gown that flowed so perfectly in the wind. Being a professional cosmetologist in Clearwater Florida, Amber did all of her own hair and makeup flawlessly. Her simple jewelry paired so perfectly with the elegant glam and bridal bouquet that complimented the colors of the cold Atlantic ocean.
Amber and Nick traveled to Maine, fully trusted me (who they’d never met before), to pick her up from her hotel in Downtown Bar Harbor and drive her to meet Nick in the National Park so they could see each other for a first look. I prepped them in advance on where he should stand and face at Sand Beach so that she could walk down the stairs and reveal her gown to him. After we spent a little bit of time at Sand Beach for some portraits, they followed me to our next spot, which was a little hidden gem I keep up my sleeve and they hadn’t seen before. I led them down a steep path through the evergreens, where we landed at a small, secluded spot on the pink granite cliffs of Acadia. It towered over a pebble cove where you can hear the waves crashing and rolling the rocks against each other as they are going in and out. The peaceful sounds of nature paired with the crisp salty air blowing across the water and onto your cheeks made for the most serene spot to share handwritten vows.
As Amber + Nick read from their custom vow books, I wasn’t able to hear what they were saying, but I could tell by their expressions that it was filled with lots of love, emotion, and happiness. Once they sealed the deal with the exchange of wedding bands and a first kiss, we spent some more time rock hopping along the rigid coast of Maine.
While they may live in Florida now, they chose Acadia because its scenery reminded them of Nick’s hometown in Alaska. During our few short hours together, they told me all about their love story, how they met, and the things they love the most. (Hearing about their travels and their trip to Alaska together, has me even more excited for my trip there in August of 2023!)
We finished up our time together back in Downtown Bar Harbor, at the hotel they were staying at. The architecture and grounds of The Bar Harbor Regency created a slight European with classic elegance.
This is the perfect example of being able to have a luxury wedding experience with fun and adventure as well. From just a couple of phone calls, emails and questionnaires we had already got a sense of each other’s personalities so when we met for the first time on the day of their elopement, there was no feeling of awkwardness. There was an instant connection that made it so easy to talk to each other and learn more and more about them as we spent that time together. In result, we created timeless photographs that are classy and packed with adventure, truly reflecting their love story and our full elopement experience that we created together.
Who knew climbing through nature in a wedding and hiking boots could look so fabulous?!
Elopements • January 14, 2023