Lauren + Steve :: The Casa Monica :: St. Augustine Wedding Photography

So, I know I always say how much I love my job, it is one of the coolest things in the world to do. But for me, its all about the STRESS, the challenges and differences in every wedding day. This wedding was no different, and maybe added a few crazy parts I was not expecting.

I had the absolute pleasure of photographing Lauren at the Lightner on the Monday before her wedding to do her bridals. While I had met Lauren and her mom before hand, after spending the afternoon with her doing her bridals, I knew her wedding was going to be FUN! I did not meet Steve till the day of the wedding, but as soon as he showed me his zoolander, I know that he was the perfect match for Lauren!

So…. I am walking with Steve to the church, and he mentions, oh so casually, that the New York Times {yeah, the NYT!} has a photographer at the wedding…because well, they want to feature the wedding in the paper. WAIT! What!

Then I get to the church, and the coordinator asks to speak to me. I am all smiles because I got more done in my pre ceremony formals then we had planned and a happy photographer is an on time photographer. Well, when Karen sees me, she says “you know”, and I said “I know what”, and she says, with the most serious face “Hillary Clinton is about to walk in the church”. Wait, WHAT???! THE Hillary Clinton, the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton?? Why yes, yes she is.

Lucky for us, Madame Secretary was beyond beyond gracious! She photographed with every single person at the cocktail party, and was all smiles the entire time! I know it meant so much to Lauren and Steve that she came, and I have to say, as an outsider, I was beyond impressed! I think it goes to show what amazing people all three of them are, but even more how fabulous Lauren and Steve are!

Lauren and Steve tied the knot at the the Cathedral Basilica In downtown St Augustine, and then had a fabulous soiree at the Casa Monica, and it was a wonderfully lavish affair filled with dancing, toasting, and loads of happiness. While the day had some curve balls, it was one of the best wedding days I have had the honor of photographing. And the couple, their special guests, the venues, and the coordinator did such a wonderful job bringing it all together!

Lauren and Steve {and to your parents}- you two are amazing! Lauren, your dimples still make me smile, and I can’t tell you how blessed I was to work with you both!  You two made my job an absolute breeze! I wish for you both a lifetime of love and laughter. Thank you so much for your kindness on your wedding day, but most of all for your trust! And just so you know, the offer for the Maldives still stands 🙂 Congrats to you both!!

 Their Fabulous team of Vendors:

Rehearsal Dinner Venue – Old City House Inn     Ceremony Venue – Cathedral Basilica of St. Augusine 

Reception Venue – Casa Monica Hotel     Bridal Gown – Custom, Veluz Reyes     Grooms Wear – Men’s Wearhouse, Calvin Klein

Makeup – Carrie Wilson    Hair – Graznya Mercado     Flowers – Rachael Kasie Design     Invitations – Paper Dance

Ceremony Music – Kyle Wehner     Reception Music  – Bitton Events     Engagement Ring – Grandmother’s 

Bride’s Wedding Ring – Grandmother’s     Groom’s Wedding Ring – J. Lewis Jewelry     Calligraphy – Elizabeth Heron

Coordinator – Karen Erwin, St. Augustine Weddings & Special Events

Caterer – Casa Monica Hotel     Cake Designer – Sweet Weddings Cakes  

Officiant  – Fr. Larry Richards     Videographer – Life and Love Studios

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Sometimes you need a little “lift” from your friends!

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Yes, it took 6 people to get her in her custom dress!

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Steve’s gift to Lauren, yeah, I am in love…

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did you two meet?

Steve and I met at work at the State Department in Washington D.C. in 2009.

How did he propose?

Steve surprised me by flying from his home in Venezuela to my home in Seattle. It was a Friday night.  He knocked on my door and when I opened, he was on bended knee and proposed on my doorstep.  After the proposal he took me away to a nearby B&B for a surprise weekend away!

How did you choose your theme, flowers, and overall design for your wedding?

I love old things with a rich history, so it made sense for us to get married in St. Augustine.  I love that we got married in the nation’s oldest city and in a very old church with a rich history.  Also, I chose to wear my grandmother’s rings as a way to honor her.  I wanted the flowers and the overall wedding design to be fresh, sophisticated, and classic, but also to blend with the antique vibe in St. Augustine.

What was the best part of your wedding day?

The best part of our wedding day was when I was finally able to walk down the aisle and join my husband-to-be at the altar, in front of all of the people that we love the most.  We had waited for that moment for so long!

What do you want to always remember from your wedding day?

I always want to remember every moment of our ceremony. It went by so quickly and every moment was so special and meaningful – I am glad we hired a videographer!

“IF I only I knew!” what is one piece of advise you would give to brides planning their wedding day?

I would advise brides to start getting ready as early as possible. The day goes by so quickly and I cherish every moment from the time I woke up that morning.

Where are you going on your honeymoon?

The Maldives.

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