Amy and Alex were married on a sunny and warm June day in Maine at French’s Point in Searsport. These two grew up vacationing on the Maine Coast and after getting engaged on Marginal Way in Ogunquit, they knew the ocean was the background they wanted for their big day.
What they weren’t planning was for their entire day to be turned on its head because of COVID. I’m not going to lie, I was a bit nervous about this wedding. It was going to be my first of the year and of the pandemic, but with the help of Purple Orchid Events, safety was put first and everything went extremely well. This wedding was entirely outside, with a twinkly-lit patio dinner while baby foxes played as speeches happened, and a beautiful sunset that mimicked the pinks and blues of the day. It couldn’t have been more perfect.
French’s Point is such a gem. Tucked away down multiple dirt roads in the small town of Stockton Springs, this venue is truly a little oasis. The rooms are beautiful and the staff is so accommodating, you’ll want to stay there long after your wedding day. You have a 180-degree view of the ocean, and the rest is lush flowers and forests.
Amy + Alex chose a first look on the pebble beach on the property, where they couldn’t contain their giggles. I am a big proponent of First Looks for a number of reasons. If you want to stick with traditions and wait to see each other at your ceremony, I completely respect that! It does, however, completely change the timeline of your wedding day.
Seeing each other before the ceremony can alleviate so much stress and jitters before the wedding. After I photograph your first look moment, I give all of my couples a few minutes alone to: #1 oogle over how amazing each other looks and #2 breathe. You’ve been directing hair and makeup, locating your wedding party, rewriting vows, handling last-minute planning, (and maybe nursing a hangover) all morning and honestly, you deserve a few minutes of peace.
After we’ve regrouped, we take about 15 minutes to take portraits, then meet back up with your wedding party and loved ones. It is at this time that we get all of the group photos done. The best part of this? You don’t have to round up your family and friends after the ceremony when the last thing they want to do is pose for me while appetizers and cocktails are being served to your other guests.
When you opt for a first look, you’re trading that moment of your person seeing you for the first time as you walk down the aisle, for you both walking away from the ceremony and into your cocktail hour to spend almost the whole time with your loved ones. Depending on the day, we might go on a small portrait adventure during cocktail hour, but I promise you will get so much more time celebrating when you opt for this route.
Okay, back to Amy + Alex. The rest of the day was filled with stories of the couple and how they’ve grown together with their friends and family over the past 6 years, and one of the biggest takeaways I got from this wedding day was during Amy’s maid of honor speech, given by one of her oldest friends. She actually had all the guests take a moment and notice something around them that they hadn’t before. whether it was the sound of the ocean, the colors of the sunset, or the smell of dinner cooking, she encouraged them to be present. I loved this, especially during such a crazy and uncertain time as this.
I hope this wedding encourages those of you getting married to embrace the smaller wedding size and all of the changes that come along with a COVID wedding and remember that at the end of the day you are marrying your best friend, and that’s what matters most.