Bride and Groom Sunset

What can I say about this day other than it was absolute perfection? Tom and Sam enjoyed every moment of their rustic countryside wedding. From the first moment I met these two beautiful souls at their engagement session, I knew that working with them would be the stuff of dreams. I can't say more without showing the photos, so here we go - starting at the beginning:

bride getting ready

Emma and I started out with Sam's getting ready photos at her hotel. As you can see, Sam doesn't need a lot of help in the beauty department, but her long-time hairstylists created the perfect deconstructed bohemian updo to convey the free-spirited bridal look Sam was going for.

bridal prep robes and hairstyle poses

It was really important to Sam that both of her mothers - her own mom and Tom's mom - helped her into her gown. It was a beautiful moment to watch their loving hands button her into her form-fitting lace sheath. 

bride getting buttoned into her dress
moms getting bride into her dress
bridal shoes getting ready

After Tom and Sam had their private first look, we took them out for some romantic portraits in a field of tall grass and wildflowers to fit the natural feel Sam wanted for her photos. I always enjoy chatting with my couples about their vision for their portraits. It's so inspiring to collaborate. As a California lifestyle photographer, using locations with beautiful light is the perfect way to insure gorgeous wedding day portraits with a natural feel.

smiling and happy bride
happy couple on their wedding day

Sam and Tom elected to have their ceremony at Sammi's family ranch. Sam had grown up swimming in the lake where the ceremony site was placed, and she and Tom both had great memories of their courtship here. But before the ceremony, Sammi chose to have a first look with her dad at their family cabin.

first look with dad
dad hugging daughter on her wedding day

Meanwhile, the wedding party was ready to get the real party started!

wedding party champagne

The lakeside ceremony was full of meaningful vows, memorable stories, laughter and tears.

bride and dad walking down aisle
bohemian wedding ceremony
bohemian wedding recessional

After the ceremony, we took the happy newlyweds and their attendants for portraits. I love photographing couples after the ceremony, because all the pressure and stress is over and the natural emotions are running high!

bride and groom portraits
wedding party lakeside
bridal party portraits rustic and bohemian

Then it was time for dinner and cake - everybody's favorite part of the day!

wedding cake and ring detail shots

The toasts were heartfelt and sincere, especially the toast that Sam's sister gave as maid-of-honor. I don't think there was a dry eye under the tent. These sisters have such a special bond.

reception toasts

As the sun started to set, Tom and Sam took to the dance floor and set a great pace for the rest of the evening. It was wonderful to be a part of their beautiful day, and to share in the moments of their perfect wedding story. 

bouquet toss
bouquet toss
reception tent after dark

Sammi is a personal trainer for women, and she has a great inspirational Instagram feed! Follow her here: Sammigfit


Catering: Nolands Catering

Cake: Dawns Couture Cakes

DJ: Safari Sound

Florist: Countryside Flowers

Hairstylist: Natalie's New Outlooks

Assistant Photographer: Emma Roy