Crystal Springs Golf Club Wedding| New Jersey Wedding Photography |April and Nick
I will be the first photographer to say (well, maybe not the first lol) that wedding season does not have to end in the summer or fall! There are only a few brave couples I’ve met who are willing to brave the cold (and potential snow storms) to celebrate their wedding during the most magical and bright season of the year. April and Nick are one of those couples! April and Nick celebrated their winter wedding at the beautiful Grand Cascades Lodge in Hamburg, NJ. This venue could not have been more perfect with detail matching the spirit of the season AND the beauty of a wedding celebration!
All of the girls, including the cutest little flower girls, started their day at the venue. I just love when this happens because it just makes for a very relaxed bride who knows she doesn’t have to shuffle around in a car at any point during the day. I cannot begin to tell you how incredible April’s dress was – I was OBSESSED – with long sleeves and lace it was so so so stunning and flowy! Such a perfect choice for April and the overall theme of the day. I couldn’t get enough of the three flower girls during all the prep dancing around in their beautiful dresses and pretty hair do’s. They couldn’t wait to have their pictures taken just like the grown ups in the room. They even helped me out taking some pictures!
Meanwhile, just down the road, Nick was getting ready with his groomsmen at Minerals Hotel and Spa. After both of them had finished their prep and individual mornings of pampering and fun, it was time for their first look! April and Nick shared their first look inside the Lodge in front of the Christmas trees and magical twinkling lights! It was absolutely stunning! After their first look, they had a beautiful moment with April’s son, Damon and her nephew, Luca who ran over to give them both big hugs! Did I mention they were wearing the most adorable tiny tuxes!?
Once April and Nick had shared their first moments together, we took a few bride and groom portraits by the tree. Then, they were joined by their amazing wedding party. It was so much fun! The group was very large and it just made for the best energy before the ceremony had even started. It was just so beautiful to see them surrounded by all of their amazing family and friends! After the wedding party photos inside the Lodge by the trees, we did a few family formals as well. I don’t think there is any better Christmas card setting than that – perfectly decorated, bright Christmas trees and everyone dressed in the finest (not to mention the big smiles on everyone’s face!) My assistant, Sydney, actually decorated all the trees which made me feel so lucky to have that as the photo backdrop!
After we finished all of the photos inside, I snuck April and Nick outside to do some portraits overlooking the mountains. This beautiful blue fog covered the mountains which made for one of the most stunning backdrops. The entire time I could not get over how amazing April’s dress looked in all of the photos and of course complete with her beautifully braided hair.
At this point in the day, it was time for everyone to hide and prep for the ceremony. My second shooter and I snuck back inside before all the guests started to arrive and took pictures of all the ceremony details. Pink Dahlia Floral did such an amazing job with the ceremony backdrop. Which – so cool – became their head table backdrop! It was this stunning gold ring covering in florals and lanterns. It matched everything perfectly.
April and Nick had a beautiful ceremony officiated by Nick’s cousin. It was perfectly short and very sweet. Nick and April read their own custom vows to each other – although Nick accidentally started reading April’s at first! The whole wedding was cracking up and April’s son Damon said out loud, “That was hilarious” which made everyone start laughing even harder!
After the ceremony, the guests, along with April and Nick headed into the rotunda at Crystal Springs for the cocktail hour. Everyone enjoyed a wide variety of delicious foods throughout the hour and had a chance to walk around and enjoy all the beautiful decor and Christmas decorations. While everyone was at the cocktail hour, I was able to photograph all of the beautiful reception details. I just LOVED all the florals, gold plates and wooden lanterns placed through the ballroom. I was especially obsessed with their gold sequin tablecloth at the sweetheart table! Another one of my favorite details of the night was their naked cake! This has to be MY FAVORITE and I just love how these photos came out with the trees sparkling in the background!
Once the reception kicked off, the DJ introduced the wedding party and both families. After introductions and an opening prayer, Nick’s dad and April both gave beautiful speeches. At the end of April’s toast and speech, her son yelled to her, “I love you Mommy!” and my heart seriously melted! He was such a trooper all day (and he was a lucky little guy at the end of the night with an early Christmas gift for his amazing behaviour – a nerf gun!) Following the speeches, April and Nick shared a beautiful first dance followed by two of the sweetest parents dances that made everyone in the room cheer!
Chris and his DJ team from D’Amico Entertainment had the dance floor packed for the rest of the night! It was so fun to see everyone enjoying themselves and celebrating the love between April and Nick. What a fun way to kick of the holiday season with all of your family and friends by your side. And best of all, I was able to sneak April and Nick out during the dancing and fun of the reception for a few last night portraits with all the Christmas lights in the background. It was the perfect way to end the night of photography!
April and Nick, I can’t thank you enough for giving me the opportunity to join in the celebrations with you! I can’t wait to see what your future holds!
Jenna Giaquinto – Wedding Planner
Pink Dahlia Floral (Kim) – Florist
Bloom Studio – Hair Artist
Sara Kazanjan – Makeup Artist
D’Amico Entertainment (Chris) – DJ/Entertainment
Grand Cascades Lodge – Wedding Venue