My husband and I have known Chrissy for several years, and I was SO honored to photograph her and Erik's DIY, backyard, New Jersey wedding this last weekend! The entire event was a planned masterpiece; Chrissy, along with the help of her beloved family/friends/slave labor, went to work creating every detail for her dream destination wedding on her sister's farm and the results were simply flawless
Chrissy and Erik have been long distance for their entire relationship, which is a challenge that few couples can overcome. But their fierce loyalty and commitment to each other was evident throughout the day! After years of waiting for each other and months of decision making, they simply floated along as if they were in their own little world and blissfully soaked in every moment of their absolutely perfect celebration.
Literally EVERYTHING you could see was homemade - Chrissy is a genius with a vivid imagination and their set up on the edge of the woods was charming!
Legacy is deeply important to both Chrissy and Erik, so they incorporated heirlooms, memories, and photos from their previous generations weddings. It was a beautiful display!
Every girl in Chrissy's family is given the same sapphire ring to borrow for their wedding - a beautiful contribution from their grandmother.
The gold rose on Chrissy's bouquet was the last gift her grandfather gave to her grandmother before passed away. It was Chrissy's desire to keep it close to her so she could remember their love and commitment to each other. So beautiful!!
Her dress was handmade with love - a work of art designed and sewn alongside her mom. The 180 buttons are a beautiful tradition passed down by her mother.
Chrissy was a bundle of energy getting ready, and was SO excited to finally see her groom!! (Yay no more long distance!!)
Both Chrissy and Erik made sure to surround themselves with people who would bring them joy - laughter rang out often throughout their day. :)
She made a stunning bride!!
Erik is an officer in the army, and looked SO dapper in his uniform!
Their first look was SO sweet, and they giggled together as Erik explained his uniform to his new bride.
We wandered the woods on the family owned farm, and Chrissy and Erik fell naturally into each others arms.
While I photographed Erik in his officer uniform, my amazing assistant Allison captured these GORGEOUS photos of the beautiful bride!
The flowers were all handmade, and they complimented the bridesmaids perfectly!
Such sweet girls!
Let's face it - these gentlemen stole the show. ALL THE CUTE!!
The entire bridal party was relaxed and so helpful! They were such a calming presence to the happy couple (which is always a good idea - weddings can become stressful!).
I don't normally share family photos here on my blog, but I couldn't resist sharing this photo of Chrissy's immediate family. They look so beautiful - all five daughters together and the growing number of nieces and nephews!!
Right at the beginning of the ceremony, Erik (who isn't usually emotional) shared a sweet moment with his parents. They're so happy to be getting such a wonderful daughter-in-law!
Their vows were spectacular, and I cried through them. As an outward symbol of their love, commitment, and service to each other, they chose to wash each other's feet as they recited their beautifully written vows. It was probably my favorite part of their entire day!
"Mrs. Bergen, you may kiss your groom!!"
YAY!! Married!! Happy tears were shed all around...
And we snuck the bride and groom off for a few photos...
Before the cake smashing and other festivities began. :)
Near the end of their reception, Chrissy and her father laughed their way through a special dance together....
And after one last hug with mom...
They were off to begin their new life together.
Chrissy and Erik... YOU DID IT!! I'm so so happy for you both, and I'm so thankful that I got to be a part of your beautiful wedding day. Thank you so much for trusting me with your memories, and for being such lovely hosts! I hope you enjoy every moment of your trip to Italy together and the rest of your lives as you begin this new and beautiful journey. Love you both!! :)