Earlier this month, I had the great honor and pleasure of shooting the wedding of my very dear friend, Michelle and her new husband, Peter. It’s hard to believe that I’ve known Michelle for almost eight years now! It all started way back in 2004; I got my first “real”, full-time job at a big law firm where I didn’t know anyone, or really anything about law, having had a background in communications (why I thought this was a good fit, I’ll never know!) Michelle, being the kind and friendly soul that she is, took me under her wing, showed me the ins and outs of excel spreadsheets, mail merges and billing procedures and of course, the joys of the after work happy hour. Over the course of the years that we both worked there, we bonded over very serious topics such as: sushi, Perez Hilton, Brangelina and office gossip. After Michelle moved back to Tampa to become the special assistant to former FL Governor Charlie Crist, and I left the firm to have more babies (and subsequently start a career in photography) we kept in touch through Facebook, and seeing each other whenever she came to Orlando to visit. I was absolutely thrilled when I got Michelle’s message last year saying she was engaged! And wanted me to shoot her wedding! It’s not often that I have the pleasure of shooting my friends’ weddings, so when I do, it’s really special. I knew when I met Peter at our initial consultation that he and Michelle were perfectly suited for each other. They are both heavily involved in politics (Peter is the author of St. Peter’s Blog) and their community in St. Pete. And they made googly eyes and gushed over each other the whole time 🙂 I absolutely love that they incorporated important family symbols and subtle political elements into their classic, elegant “winter white” wedding. Michelle wore her grandfather’s vintage car keys pinned to her crinoline and a breast cancer survivor pink ribbon pinned to her bouquet as a tribute to a close friend. In honor of Peter’s late father, the ring bearer carried their rings down the aisle tied to the book, The Stranger, his favorite, and his presence was symbolized by a bouquet of white roses where he would have been seated. The ceremony was breathtakingly beautiful and sweet under the Banyan trees at the St. Petersburg Museum of Fine Arts. In true Michelle style, there were a lot of laughs, and a few happy tears as they said their vows before family and friends (and even a few paparazzi!) before making their grand entrance to the reception. Guests dined, danced, and filled out mad-libs to celebrate Michelle and Peter’s happy union. As the festivities wound down, and the guests made their way outside, Michelle and Peter shared one last dance before making their exit amidst a sea of sparklers to their horse drawn carriage. I’m sad to say that this preggo girl didn’t make it to out to the (I’m sure very memorable) after party but I smiled all the way back to Orlando thinking of my sweet, beautiful friend Michelle, her wonderful new husband Peter, and the happy life I know they are going to have together!
Congratulations Michelle and Peter! I love you!!
Hair/Makeup: Michele Renee Studio
Florist: The Bridal Florist
DJ/Lighting: Impulse Entertainment