The First Look We Never Had

Around our six-month milestone of marriage, a new friend in Austin, Meredith, (who happens to have her own amazing business, Bristol Lane Florals, and was super encouraging when I told her about my dream of starting this blog!) asked me if Jeff and I would like to be models for an upcoming styled shoot. She was collaborating with several other Austin wedding vendors/friends for a new blog/magazine, Cottage Hill. When I got her text, a few things went through my mind:

  1. Wait, actual models?
  2. I wonder if Jeff would be down to do this? I asked him. He said, “Sounds fun!” Check.

And with that, the decision was made. I was even more excited when I learned a little more about Cottage Hill’s vision. Rather than paraphrase, I’ll refer to them to say it best: We celebrate beautiful weddings, inspire forever marriages, and whole-heartedly believe in the promises of living a meaningful life – “I do” is only the beginning. Heck yes, I’m all about that.

What a wonderful, fun experience this was. The vendors so sweet and talented, and you can tell they are each doing something they deeply love. I would recommend any one of them to a friend for her wedding day. We didn’t know we were portraying a first look until we got to the shoot, and we didn’t actually do a first look on our wedding day, so it was fun to pretend. You can see the full and final post here. This was the all-star line-up:

Photography by Shalyn Nelson, with Love the Nelsons :: Venue: Green Pastures :: Florals by Bristol Lane Floral Design :: Hair & Make-up by Makenzi Laine :: Custom Wedding Dress Illustration by Marry Me In Spring :: Vows by Wondrous Whimsy :: Design + Coordination by Westcott Weddings 

So yes, that bit in there about “custom wedding dress illustration” begs an explanation. Another new friend in Austin, Catherine, has also started her own business (do you see a common thread here yet?) called Marry Me In Spring. Needless to say, Catherine is  t a l e n t e d.  She did an illustration of me in my wedding dress for the shoot (as a little wedding day present from my beau) by looking at a picture from our true wedding day. Best part is we got to keep it, and it’s the one you see in our bedroom.

I really wish we had captured my genuine reaction when I opened it for the first time (imagine: jaw drops, heart skips a beat, mind flashes back to that super special day) because the shot we took later just doesn’t do it justice. On that note: I’m absolutely horrible at acting, and it turns out my husband is a champ and even made fake tears happen at one point during the shoot. So there’s that.

The detail in Catherine’s illustrations truly makes them one-of-a-kind works of art. From the lace to the hair to the bride’s essence (in Jeff’s words, she captured my “wedding day confidence”!), it is all depicted beautifully. She also does family illustrations – I can’t wait to order one, one day!

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