Olivia & Seth, Summer Snowshoe Wedding

 

Olivia and Seth are one of those couples that exude authenticity. They celebrated their vows with a small group of people among the shoreline of snowshoe's lower lake. The pair love hiking and climbing, so making the trip from Williamsburg, VA, to the adventure-filled Pocahontas County, WV, just made sense. 

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One of my favorite moments before the ceremony was seeing Olivia swish around playfully in her gown. It was a beautiful petaled dress from BHLDN altered to fit the bride's preferred silhouette. 

Then of course, there was the awesome first look. With Seth and Olivia having so much of their love story recorded on hiking trails, I knew we had to get some images of the pair a little off road. And fortunately, Olivia didn't mind risking her dress for a backdrop suited to their style. 

I crossed a creek upstream from some fisherman and waded my way through tall grass. Once I found the right angle for the light and water, I used hand signals with an awesome bridesmaid who sent down Seth first. (We had zero cell service, so I'm REALLY glad she was watching over me!) Shouting over the rushing water, Seth could hear my instruction to mirror my body position. Then once he was facing the right direction, we sent down Olivia. What a first look! Despite the harsh light, this has got to be one of my favorite first looks of all time. 

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The pair exchanged vows and rings (carried by their adorable dog, Monster, a boston terrier) in front of a glassy lake and below a bright blue sky. Instead of the date, the Groom's ring had a figure-eight knot engraved within the band, a knot used to tie two ropes together while rock climbing. The bride and her maids carried hand-tied bouquets made that morning by the party, featuring soft pinks, vibrant purples, and pale blues. Toasts followed at the Boathouse's Dock where the couple's siblings recounted Seth and Olivia's courtship and travels with plenty of jokes added in for flavor. 

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And while Seth watched Olivia with the sweetest gaze the entire day, his face lit up when it was time for cake. Haha! Olivia baked the German Chocolate cupcakes and Seth was so excited. He was like, "I love this cake- I ask for it every time I have a birthday!" I just loved that.

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As the sun started dipping below the tree line we snuck off site for a few romantic "just married" portraits where I stayed back and shot with a long lens. I love giving couples just a little bit of direction and then letting them love on each other. My couples always say this time to just be with each other is one of their favorite moments of the wedding day. 

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As the sun sunk lower and lower, Snowshoe set a campfire a blaze and when the stars came out, Snowshoe added to the glitter with fireworks. I can't imagine a more fitting wedding day for this pair and felt so blessed to be among the guests near and dear. 

Thank you again Mr. and Mrs. Lyles! 

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Focusing on relationships and real moments, Claire Watson specializes in photography that captures true beauty and feels genuine and authentic. Claire Watson is a West Virginia Wedding Photographer based in Martinsburg, WV. She joyfully serves clients in West Virginia, Virginia, and Maryland.

 

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