Gardens at SIUE

Niki & Joey: Family by Bolla Photo

Alice: Six Months Old by Bolla Photo

Aloha! 2017 is off to a great (but cold!!!) start with the adorable Alice! She's in town visiting from Hawaii but came prepared for winter in Illinois with her bear snow suit. I just can't get over this cutie!

Jamie & Joel: Wedding at the Wildey Theatre by Bolla Photo

Joel and Jamie are a couple who are right up my alley! Since I actually wrote this blog post from the bottom-up, I will refrain from any further gushing about how fabulous these two are! Prepare for some gushing! You have been forewarned! ;-)

First looks. Have I mentioned how much I love first looks? I really love first looks! These two adorable expressive people epitomize why I love first looks! Both of their reactions could not be any better if I scripted them myself! Amazement, excitement, joy, love...emotions, tears, smiles, hugs, kisses? Check! Check! Check to all of the above! Love it!

Per tradition, Jamie had her father, Joe, walk her down the aisle. But her mom, Barbara, joined them when they reached the altar so that both parents could officially give her away to be married. I thought that was such a sweet gesture! Both Jamie's and Joel's families are just so sweet!

Jamie and Joel were so ecstatic to be married! They are naturally just that cute and fun-loving, though, too! The only possible issue I could raise against these two (and even this is actually good, not bad) is that they laugh so much with each other it was sometimes challenging to do any non-laughing photos, especially during their engagement session. We had such a blast!! Love, love, love fun couples like them!

This was my first wedding at the Wildey Theatre in Edwardsville. It is such a fantastic venue! (I loved it so much I rented it for the baby shower I hosted in June!) The exposed brick and domed ceiling require little additional decorating. Jamie took advantage of that and used simple and elegant silver accents along with lanterns and flowers. Between the vanilla scented LED candles and the delicious cake from Bailey Cakes, the room filled with the heavenliest aroma. 

Just before sunset, Jamie and Joel humored my fancies and agreed to go frolicking (OK, not actually frolicking...although I'm sure that would have made for some great photos too!) just outside of city limits. On our way back into the reception, we, of course, had to get the obligatory photo with the theater marquee. 

Congratulations, Jamie and Joel!

St. Louis Wedding Ceremony: Our Lord's Lutheran Church, Maryville, IL
St. Louis Reception Venue: Wildey Theatre, Edwardsville, IL
Cake Artist: Bailey Cakes, Edwardsville, IL

Claire & Ryan: The June Bride by Bolla Photo

"Oh, they say when you marry in June, you're a bride all your life." That song from the classic musical "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" is stuck in my head every year when my June weddings start up. (...and now I'm singing it to myself as I write this.) It strikes me as no surprise that Claire and Ryan chose to get married in June. Claire is a classic traditional bride and her wedding day reflected simple elegance in all of her details.

The royal blue Claire chose certainly pops in all of her many classy details. And those flowers! I just love orchids! 

Here is the coffee table guestbook that I did for Claire and Ryan so that they could show off some of their favorite engagement photos to all of their 400+ guests. 

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After the ceremony, everyone endured the heat and humidity of the Midwest in June for some wedding party photos at the Gardens at SIUE before heading to Highland.

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Before heading to the reception, we stopped at the old brewery in Highland so that Claire and Ryan could get a few quick photos with their adorable puppy!

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Congratulations, Claire and Ryan!

Ceremony: Trinity Lutheran Church, Edwardsville, IL
Reception: KC Hall, Highland, IL
Hair and Makeup Artists: Salon de Guerra, Highland, IL
Floral Artist, Widmer Floral, Highland, IL
Dress: Frew’s Bridal, Alton, IL

Aiemie & Billy: Snowy Engagement Fun by Bolla Photo

Having never really been photographed professionally (aside from at his brother’s wedding a few years back), Billy and Aiemie both wanted to make sure their photos that would be fun and relaxed…which, of course, I’m all for! Last week’s dusting of snow turned into a foot of FUN for this week’s session at the Gardens at SIUE in Edwardsville.

The snow was too fluffy for snowballs, but Aiemie and Billy didn’t let that stop them from an all-out snowfight! War quickly turned back to love as the two cuddled to warm up.

Majoring in both psychology and sociology, Aiemie spends a lot of time at the campus library. Inside I was excited to find an antique iron elevator cage.

And I couldn’t leave without spying on some smooching between the bookshelves!

I’m super excited to get these two back in front of my camera at their wedding this May.