Thornewood Castle has quickly become one of my favorite places to shoot a wedding! The castle is full of such interesting collectibles and antiques, rich history, and light that changes throughout the day. There are even hidden rooms! Every time I shoot at a venue I have shot at before, my goal is to change things up and find new shooting spaces and angles. I am so thrilled with how this Thornewood Castle Wedding turned out for Erika and Elliott!
Erika and Elliott were referred to me by a couple from a few years ago, Erin and Troy (see their Trinity Tree Farm Wedding HERE!). I absolutely love personal referrals, especially if it means that I get to see a past #evariebcouple at a wedding! I met with Erika and Elliott at the cutest little cafe in Molbak’s and we instantly hit it off. They were genuine, asked wonderful questions, and just down to earth.
How they met:
During the first week of college at the University of Washington, Elliott asked to sit next to Erika in the dining hall and struck up a conversation (all we remember is talking about video games). They hung out the next day and Elliott asked Erika out on a bench in the quad. She said no(!), but they continued to hang out. Two weeks later, Elliott asked again and Erika said yes!
The Plan: Propose on a bench in Central Park, NYC, on our 8th anniversary (October 14th 2018). Our friend would be at the location and sneakily take pictures of the proposal.
What Actually Happened: Elliott and their friend didn’t agree beforehand on a location and got totally lost (Central Park is BIG). Erika, who totally knew what was about to happen (everyone is bad at keeping secrets!), made them call each other (after relentlessly teasing Elliott). Eventually, Elliott found a good bench, our friend found us, and the rest went pretty well we think!
Favorites from Erika and Elliott’s wedding day:
- Erika is a natural beauty and isn’t into wearing makeup or elaborate hair styling – she showed up on her wedding day with a simple, beautiful hairdo and a fresh glowing face. (There’s nothing better than that natural bridal glow!!!) So, instead of a ton of hair/makeup getting ready photos, after getting dressed we photographed Erika and her girlfriends playing ukulele and singing!!!
- Elliott, Erika, and their wedding party literally DANCED down the aisle to Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now”. It was a surprise for almost everyone and it was a HIT!!! The joy on their faces was absolute perfection. I can’t think of a better way to kick off a wedding ceremony.
- During cocktail hour we had planned to do family portraits. In a well executed effort to keep guests entertained while we were taking photos, their officiant (also a swing dance instructor) taught guests the key basics of swing dancing! Such a fun addition!!!
- The toasts were fantastic. Erika’s Dad held a plate in the air, tempted to break it on the ground in celebration! He was joking of course, but Erika and Elliott’s reaction was worth the joke! Elliott’s Mother made a beautiful toast about life being made up of hundreds of puzzle pieces and mapped out how, had life not had taken certain turns in the year prior to meeting, Erika and Elliott woudn’t have been sitting at the same table at UW and we wouldn’t all be sitting at tables together on their wedding night. (I’ll admit, it was a “oh goodness, here goes Eva crying at a wedding again” moment.)
- The familiar faces. Erika and Elliott received tons of fantastic referrals for friends – many of which I had worked together on prior weddings. I love the sense of community in the wedding industry! So wonderful to see so many familiar faces amongst the vendors AND guests!!!
Erika and Elliott’s Wedding Vendor Team:
- Venue: Thornewood Castle
- Day-Of Coordination: Fitsum-ism
- Catering: Crescent Moon Catering
- Bridal Gown Boutique: A Modest Choice Bridal
- Bridal Gown Designer: Venus Bridal, Modest Collection
- Bridal Shoes: TOMS
- Wedding Bands: Almaza Jewelers
- Suits: Jos. A Bank
- Officiant and Swing Dance Teacher: Jonathan Keith (He taught Erika and Elliott to swing dance in college!)
- DJ: DJ Suave (email – firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Photographer: Eva Rieb Photography
- Second: Christina Hyatt Photography