Peer & Amanda: married

I just love weddings. I love that it is the best day in a couples life. The pure joy is just so beautiful.  Being asked to photograph a couple's biggest day is something I will never take for granted. It is an honor to be there for every little detail in a couples wedding. 

June 7, 2015 was a gorgeous sunny day. It began bright and early for the wedding party as they all pitched in to help set up. Every one involved in this wedding had an important role to play. All using their talents to help the bride and groom make this day perfect. 

I was privileged to work with Darius Jenkins (you can check out his Instagram here) you'll notice his photos in this post as well. I began my day with the ladies and him with the gentlemen.  I'm sure you will all love his images as much as I do. 

Here are some highlights from this day!


you can also check out the hashtag #aagaardwedding2015 for photos from the bridal party and guests!  

Peer and Amanda, thank you for allowing us to be there. Thank you for trusting us to capture your best day ever.   

I asked the bride, Amanda, to hightlight her day for us from her eyes. I also asked her to give advice or some things she learned to help future brides. I'll leave you with her wisdom:

I woke up on my wedding day the happiest I had ever felt in my life. I have wanted to be married since I could remember, and it was finally happening. I went out to the balcony of my hotel, and literally yelled, “I’m getting married today!!!” I had so thoughtfully planned out the setup of my entire DIY wedding, allowing my beautiful bridal party to set up my venue for me, so that I could stay back at the hotel and be pampered as I got ready for the biggest day of my life. Before I knew it, the girls were arriving to get themselves ready, and everything became a blur. I began to panic for a moment, as we ran short on time. But thankfully, my bridesmaids pulled it all together, and we were right on schedule. I planned a first look with my Daddy, and that is a moment I will never forget. Once my first look was done, we shot my bridesmaids photos and headed to my venue. We hadn’t planned my grand arrival, so the girls snuck me in behind a sheet, after I hid in the parking lot in my sisters SUV so that no one would see me. Looking back, I was so nervous and excited, I didn’t realize at the time, how silly the whole situation was. HA! In what felt like in instant, I was walking down the aisle. I was so happy to see my groom, I can’t remember seeing another person’s face during the walk down. During the whole ceremony, I couldn’t help but stare directly at my husband, and he was so sweet, trying to look away to hold back the tears he swore was sunscreen in his eyes. We said I do, kissed and made it official! The rest of the day was filled with love, laughter, and a lot of photos. I smiled for more photos than I had in my life on my wedding day, and I am an avid picture taker! But looking back, my wedding day truly is a day I’ll never forget in my life. It was an emotional roller coaster, but worth every moment of crafting to do-it-myself, headache over finances to make the budget work, and tears of stress hoping it would all come together!

Top Things I Learned from my Big Day:
“Don’t try to create a day you want to be perfect, capture your day perfectly”: Advice from my amazing photographer. Holly and I had some specifics and guidelines, but we truly both agreed on a very organic experience. My favorite pictures from the day were the ones that happened on their own, even more than all the shots I wanted from the 4.4k pins I found on Pinterest.

Splurge for that upgrade: It was the week of my wedding, and I went to do a walk-through of my venue and decided to check out the hotel I had booked for some of my maids to stay with me the night before the wedding. When I got there, I realized why it was such an affordable hotel, and it just wasn’t what I wanted in my heart. I called Holly and one of my bridesmaids. They both said you do what you truly want, what feels right. I splurged for the nicer hotel, and it totally paid off. We stayed at the Hilton Waterfront Hotel, and they sent my girls and I champagne the night before the wedding, upgraded my night of wedding hotel to a suite, and sent complimentary snacks and champagne to my husband and me. Not to mention it was a beautiful setting for my photos, which was a big priority to me. This splurge was worth every dollar, and created a beautiful, stress free environment for my wedding weekend.

Things are going to go wrong: I read this on blogs, and heard from friends and family, but it doesn’t set in until you experience it for yourself. My example of this that stands out the most is my seating chart. My guest list called for a seating chart due to various reasons. I spent hours upon hours crafting a picture perfect, perfectly planned out seating chart. On the day of the wedding, not only did the guest list pieces not make it to the venue for set up, once set up, the chart somehow blew over, and most guests decided to sit wherever they wanted. And you know what? Life went on. No matter what you do to plan everything perfectly, life is going to happen. The day will go on, and it will still be the best day of your life.

Listen to your body: I live a pretty high stress life, and I am quite the planner. I had spent at least 365 days fully planning my big day. I had notebooks, and organizers, to do lists and plastic bins with all my hand crafted décor. I thought I had it all under control until I got back from my bachelorette party and the wee of the wedding arrived. I felt so much anxiety and stress, my body broke out in funky rashes and spots. At that point I had to call in the troops, try to delegate as much as possible to my bridal party and family, let go, and let God. I spent the day before my wedding being pampered, with a pedi and a massage, and the night before of my wedding with my bridesmaids having dinner, walking along the beach and giggling over a bonfire. I splurged for a $35 hotel breakfast, because everyone tells you to eat on your big day, and sprang for a makeup artist to make me look and feel my best on my big day. These small splurges helped keep my stress down and allowed me to enjoy the day. Remember what the day is all about, and take as many moments as you can to just take it all in.
Being married is the best feeling I have ever experienced in my life. After being with my husband for years, I didn’t think much would change after the wedding. I honestly fall more in love with him every day. Although the stress of a wedding can be overwhelming, the end result is so much more worth it than you could ever imagine. I wouldn’t change a thing from my wedding day, and I will cherish this day for a lifetime.
— Amanda Aagaard