Blumen Gardens Wedding Photography | Benny & Abbie

I don't think it's possible for me to say enough good things about Abbie and Benny. They're two of the most humble people I've ever met and deeply care about their friends and family. Their love for God and each other is a breath of fresh air and you just can't help but want to spend more time with them. What a joy to have witnessed their marriage!


You are so stunning, Abbie. Drew Barrymore ain't got nothin' on you. ;)


Things were running way behind (as they usually do!), so I think we literally had 10-15 minutes to photograph all the wedding party pictures before they had to run off and hide from guests. NBD. This was a stellar group so they totally nailed it. 


Time to get married!


This right here. It's the exact picture I want when Seth walks our Abby down the aisle some day. 


I don't normally post family formals, but I want to say that even though I'm primarily a natural light photographer, I think it's super important to know how to use artificial light just in case. I mentioned earlier how things were running really behind. Well, the ceremony started about 15-20 minutes later than planned. With a late-September, outdoor, evening wedding, we already knew we'd be cutting it close for family pictures after the ceremony with the light, and with the setback, it was almost full dark as the wedding ended. I always bring an off-camera light to give us flexibility in any circumstance, but I was sooooo thankful for it because it was literally pitch black when we started family pictures. I couldn't even have used a flash on-camera because we were outside and without the modeling light on my Alien Bee there was literally no light for my camera to even focus for the flash to work. Honestly, if this were three years ago, I'd have been up a creek without a paddle. Just a bit of encouragement to my fellow photographers who may be hesitant to use lights at all. The image below wouldn't have happened without it. And now back to our regularly scheduled program. :D


Benny's mom is quite possibly one of the cutest people in the world. Her smile is such a beacon of light!


Love you guys so much!! Blessings!!

(See their engagement session HERE.)

Huge thanks to Nicki Defilippis for second shooting this wedding with me!


Benny & Abbie | Married September 25th, 2015 | Sycamore, IL

Hair: Done by Maid Of Honor, Niki DeRuyck (Works at Ulta Salon)

Makeup: Maria Ventura (Urban Decay)

Florist: Jewel (all baby's breath)

Bride's Dress: House of Brides

Bridesmaid's Dresses: House of Brides

Tuxs: Black Tie Formal Wear

Getting Ready Venue: Pheasant Run 

Ceremony + Reception Venue: Blumen Gardens

Caterer: Tom and Jerry's

Cake: Blackberry Baking Company

Liquor & Bartender: Lundeen's Liquor

DJ: Bobby Vaughn

Transportation: H&M Limousine Company

Videographer : Allegory Weddings


Favorite wedding day memory:

Abbie: I have 2, my first favorite moment of the day was the first look with Benny. It was a moment of ultimate peace and comfort for me. He surprised me during the first look and had our amazing friends/photographer + videographer pray over our marriage. That moment was so emotionally great and so meaningful I still get chills thinking about it. My other favorite moment was when I saw my dad before I walked down the aisle. It wasn't a planned first look so I was sad when I realized no one told the photographer to run back to capture the moment but luckily my bridal party kept their cell phones on them and were able to snap a few pics. My relationship with my dad is super special, we've always been extremely close however we don't show a lot of emotion. Its a great family trait , but that moment was one of raw emotion and eternal love. I had never seen my dad emotional like that which made my heart smile. 


Is there anything you would have done differently?

Abbie: I would have allowed more time for makeup, which caused the delay for me getting ready and for us getting to Blumen on time for pictures. We didn't get half of the pictures I wanted due to not being there when we should have been. However I believe things happened the way they were supposed to and it still turned out to be a great day! 


Best piece of advice for brides and grooms?

Abbie: Have an amazing day of coordinator! I knew of NOTHING that went wrong in the setting up of the ceremony and reception, I knew NOTHING of other "unpleasant surprises" that happened. It was such a blessing. Plan your wedding how YOU want to and not how others (including parents) tell you to. It was amazing to me in the planing process to read how stressed brides were or how many things they would have liked to have done but they went with other peoples wishes/opinions. But to then walk in to our venue and immediately feel peace, comfort and nothing but excitement and happiness. It was because everything about that day felt genuine to me and Benny. It didn't feel like it was something that someone else planned and we just showed up and filled in the spots where we were instructed. It was a true reflection of the things we love and stuff that makes us happy.  Allow yourself to have fun and enjoy the time with your new spouse, friends, and family. 


Where did you you go for your honeymoon?

Abbie: We were gifted a trip to Seattle. It was the most amazing time ever! We rented a car and drove up to Vancouver since it was only 2.5 hours away. I have an intense love for Starbucks coffee so it was such a fun experience to go to the first one ever. Even though we didn't go somewhere exotic, tropical, or over the top it was the best honeymoon for us and that's all that mattered. I think the best part of the honeymoon was just getting to experience new places and things together. The best things in life are even THAT much better together.


Final Reflections:

Abbie: The thing that kept me the most calm was the fact that I had been planning for a better marriage than wedding day. A wedding is just one day and your marriage should last your lifetime and in the grand scheme of things the drama of one day won't matter 10 years, 20, 40, or 80 years down the road as long as I am still married to my soul mate and the one that God chose for me to be with. 

Our wedding day was filled with so much love it was overwhelming. From our families and friends, our vendors, and especially for each other, you couldn't deny feeling everyone's love and God's hand over the day. I am so thankful for how it turned out