Alex and Michelle are two beautiful friends of mine I’ve known for several years. I’m a little foggy on the details, but I’m fairly certain I met them around the same time at a Young Adult Conference for my Diocese roughly 5 or 6 years ago. Maybe. It could be only 3 or 4 years ago and I wouldn’t know the difference. Friendships like these exist outside of time (yeah, I went there).
When I heard they were dating I was unreasonably excited and restrained myself from asking if they were going to get married until I felt they’d been together a good amount of time. That may have been 6 months, it may have been a year. Again, I’m not sure. But I do know that I asked Alex twice if marriage was the direction they were headed and he said yes both times. I don’t know why I asked twice. I guess I wanted to make doubly sure. When Alex proposed I was positively giddy for the two of them. Fast forward to Michelle asking me to do her and her party’s make up for their Fourth of July festivities and I was practically buzzing inside with excitement, nervousness (what if I screw everything up!?!?), and honor. I was so thrilled to be a part of her day. Little did I know just how pleased I was going to be.
The day of the wedding was absolutely chill. Michelle is one of those ladies who truly rolls with the punches. She is one of the most laid back people I’ve ever met. Nothing phases her and she’s always ready with a smile and laugh. She truly is lighthearted in every sense of the word. I absolutely loved doing everyone’s make up (6 faces in total: bride, 3 bridesmaids, and the mothers).
I did Michelle’s bridal trial the day she did her engagement shoot. The day of the wedding, she told me it was too smokey and she wanted to dial it down a bit and showed me a photo for inspiration. It was an easy change going from smokey to a classic, clean, bright eye that focused on eye liner and lashes. When I completed the eye make up and before I did her foundation, I handed her a mirror so she could see the new style. I wish SO BADLY I could have captured the look of elation on her face. Her jaw *literally* dropped and then she broke into a HUGE smile followed with, “I LOVE it! I really love it!” There have been few moments where someone reacts so big to their make up look. I am absolutely thrilled that I could make her feel her most beautiful on such an important day.
The Orthodox Christian Wedding ceremony is a beautiful experience to participate in. If you care to learn more about it, feel free to read a great program from The Knot here. If you are curious about The Crowning specifically, you can read more here. The very truncated version (as you can imagine, there is a tremendous amount of symbolism in Orthodox Christianity as a whole, let alone the Holy Sacrament of Marriage) is that the crowns are a symbol of the crowns that await us in Heaven, they call to mind the crown of martyrdom as all marriage is a practice in self sacrifice for both Bride and Groom, and a reminder that the Bride and Groom are the King and Queen of their newly formed family.
And then the festivities started. To say it was an emotional day is an understatement. To not only work but attend this wedding was such a pleasure. I cried a lot. I laughed a lot. I danced a lot. I ate a lot. And then danced some more.
And a gratuitous shot of my stuff. Just because I love this photo. 🙂
Be sure to head over to Alexis’s page for more amazing shots of the day. It was a love-filled special day.