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St. John’s Episcopal Church + DAC Holiday Wedding

Standing in the small elevator with all of our gear, I exhaled a deep breath.

“You okay?” my wife asked.

“Yeah, just a little nervous” I replied.

The first time I met Jaclyn and Chef was on their wedding day. They recently came into town from Chicago, but our hectic holiday schedules prevented us from getting together before their wedding. My nervousness quickly dissipated as they, their families, and their guests were so friendly and welcoming, I felt like more like a guest at their wedding with an all-access pass. The day was going to be beautiful: Jaclyn and Chef held their ceremony at the beautiful St. John’s Episcopal Church, right next to Comerica Park, and their DAC holiday wedding reception immediately following.

~

Jaclyn and Chef both got ready at the Detroit Athletic Club, an exclusive private club at the heart of downtown Detroit.

DAC Holiday wedding

While Jaclyn was getting her hair and makeup ready, we started our day photographing Chef getting dressed with the help of his best man.

DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding

Once Chef was ready, it was Jaclyn’s turn. Behind me while I worked was a team of bridesmaids who enthusiastically watched and captured candid moments as their best friend turned into a bride. However, there were two very important people that I wanted to help Jaclyn first hand: her mom and sister. Jaclyn would be wearing a necklace worn by her grandmother, mom, and sister all on their wedding days. Knowing this, the photos of Jaclyn getting ready would take on a new meaning.

DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding

Jaclyn was absolutely stunning in her wedding dress. Simple, elegant, regal.

DAC Holiday wedding

With both Jaclyn and Chef ready, it was time for their first look. I love when couples choose to do a first look. Not only does it change the flow of the day, it gives them an opportunity to fully express their excitement and emotions.

DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding

With many first looks, there is a moment where the bride looks at the groom unlike anyone else. I love the genuine excitement and admiration expressed by Jaclyn.

DAC Holiday wedding

With the first look behind us, we stayed at the DAC and photographed Jaclyn and Chef.

DAC Holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding

With all of the moving parts in the morning, Jaclyn still hadn’t read her card from Chef. We stepped into a quiet room so the videographer could record audio and Jaclyn could have some privacy.

DAC Holiday wedding

There was one more important person who was waiting to see Jaclyn: her dad.

DAC Holiday wedding

On our way to the ceremony, we stopped at the Detroit Public Library to photograph the bridal party.

Groomsmen at the Detroit Public Library
Bridesmaids at the Detroit Public Library
wedding at the Detroit Public Library
wedding at the Detroit Public Library
wedding at the Detroit Public Library
wedding at the Detroit Public Library
wedding at the Detroit Public Library

We arrived at St. John’s Episcopal Church before the ceremony. Family was patiently waiting as we set up our lights and got ready for some formals. One of the benefits of having a first look is the ability to now photograph all of the family formals before the ceremony, allowing the bride and groom to later join their guests for cocktail hour.

St. John's Episcopal Church wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church wedding

After the family formals, Jaclyn hid as guests arrived. The church was full. Per the rules of the church, we only had access to the balcony for the duration of the ceremony. The good news is, the view was spectacular.

St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding

I love images that capture and tell a story. This image of Jaclyn’s walk down the aisle is one of those images.

St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding
St. John's Episcopal Church Detroit wedding

After the ceremony, we headed back for their DAC holiday wedding reception. Guests mingled downstairs during cocktail hour while the finishing touches were being put on the reception area.

Detroit DAC holiday wedding
Detroit DAC holiday wedding
Detroit DAC holiday wedding
DAC Holiday wedding

Jaclyn’s parents opened up the evening with a touching speech, welcoming guests and congratulating the newly married couple. Other speeches followed, offering up a mix of stories and a few jokes, all with an overtone of love and support.

Detroit DAC holiday wedding

Later, Jaclyn and Chef opened up the dance floor and got their DAC holiday wedding reception party started.

Detroit DAC holiday wedding
Detroit DAC holiday wedding
Detroit DAC holiday wedding
Mother-son wedding dance
Detroit DAC holiday wedding

January 21, 2020

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