Jessica & Steven | Sunset wedding at Grande Oaks

Do you know these two?? Then you know they define “Opposites Attract”. They swapped stereo types during the wedding planning and I slowly but surely understood that every detail would be handled perfectly… by Steve.
Most weeks I spend emailing, editing and checking sunset times. Knowing that there is a high chance that my advice will be ignored and then questioned afterwards as to why I didn’t force my opinion. *(And people wonder why I am getting pickier about my couples?!)
But this was great. From the get go I had my girl Jess in my corner. Since Steve already knows that she is right about everything, (as all of us women tend to be) he soon took the giant leap on board and not only asked for my advice- he followed it.
Having your wedding anywhere near sunset can be completely stressful. Besides researching sunset times, you need to tour your venue and view where the lighting will be during your ceremony and of course have a backup plan for weather. Grande Oaks (where they filmed Caddy Shack!) is more than a stunning wedding venue. It takes you far away from a typical Florida wedding and gives you Southern charm under the Oaks.
The display of oak trees would be enough to feel like you are away from it all, but the complete orchestra of details brought together to bring in the essence of Fall was something out of a magazine.
The groom and his dad actually built the wooden doors that graced the center of the ceremony. It made the backdrop for their first look and the entire ceremony one of a kind.
This bride and her family have been like a second family to me growing up, so the fact that I was able to capture the important moments of their big day meant so much to me. You know you’re family when the bride’s mom actually stands up during the processional to hug you *(yep, happened while I was shooting and I could not have been more proud).
With planes soaring overhead during the ceremony- we learned exactly how marriage can be like the sport of baseball. Don’t think they go hand in hand? I would love to get a copy of all of the analogies because by the end I was pretty convinced that I actually liked baseball. They had their first date at a baseball game so it was too sweet to see how they tied it all together.
While we ran off after the big kiss to catch the ideal golden hour– my awesome second shooter Justin was able to catch the cocktail hour complete with cigar rolling, custom drinks and delicious food.
After the speeches and special dances.. we were all treated to Southern cooking at it’s finest! I saw chicken and waffles and my now Texan heart nearly leapt across the table. There was so many stations to create your perfect plate of comfort food that I was tempted to take the rest of the night off!
But of course I would have missed the singing battle to the soundtrack of Grease (which I am positive the gals dominated) and a slicing open of a bottle with a sword. Yep. Glad I put down my fork long enough to keep shooting. Oh! And for those who didn’t know how these two fell in love- they had their love story written out on the groom’s cake like a fairytale book.
Moral of the story… If you have a vision in your head for your wedding and you have enough determination- you can really make it happen. Reach out to your vendors for advice. If they have nothing great to offer- maybe consider hiring someone else. (cough cough… ask me about vendor lists).

Congrats again to my lovely Jessie and her lucky husband Steven! So happy you two make each other so happy.
No way I could have done this without my second shooter- Justin Young Photography
Video Team— Anchor Weddings  
DJ Ray Ramis with Eddie B & Co  
Groom’s Cake- Elite Cake Creations
Invitations- Lisa with The Invitorium at Kopikats
Special photography lighting made possible by MagnetMod gear

5 thoughts on “Jessica & Steven | Sunset wedding at Grande Oaks

  1. What a beautiful wedding at Grande Oaks! Seems like that ceremony time lined up with sunset perfectly for some stunning portraits! Stunning photography by Elizabeth Birdsong

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  2. I’m having destination wedding photography dreams right now! This Grande Oaks wedding in Florida looks like the perfect break for an Austin, Texas wedding photographer! Beautiful wedding photography!

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  3. I love your ability to nail every single portion of wedding photography from details, to candids, to romantic night shots. This is a stunning wedding from Grande Oaks, and that night portrait proves why any couple is lucky to get you as their Austin wedding photographer (or anywhere else for that matter!)

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