Becoming the Bride Again | Styled Shoot with Crystal Belcher Photography

On a perfectly sunny Monday, I was excited, jittery, and could not believe the day had arrived. I was going to play the bride....after six years of marriage, I got to put on a gown again. I had my hair and makeup done, and my dude wore a fancy suit. (He was looking pretty good, if I may say so.) As I've mentioned before, Cal and I did not have a lot of portrait time on our wedding day. This has always bugged me and left me short on images to blow up for our (one day) house. So FINALLY, we will have some naturally lit portraits to hang on the wall. Another benefit to doing this shoot was networking with new local(and far) vendors! The shoot theme, which is still a bit of a surprise, has been something I've been dreaming up for a while now. FINALLY seeing it come to life made me so happy.

I could not have had a better team for the day. Everyone seemed to read my mind, which is far more than I could ever hope for. Ruth of Raise the Ruth Events staged the vegetable cart (yes, vegetable cart!) EXACTLY how I envisioned it. She also played a huge role in putting the finishing touches on some things after I got all garbed up.

Ruth of Raise the Ruth Events and a preview of our sweetheart table

Ruth of Raise the Ruth Events and a preview of our sweetheart table

The ladies of the Norfolk Botanical Garden wedding team were SO HELPFUL! Between the four of them, we had an extra set of hands for the duration of the shoot. They even drove us around in one of the fancy NBG golf carts. I will forever be grateful for that because my dress weighed approximately 87 lbs and it was 87 degrees. (Slight exaggeration on the dress, but not on the weather.)

The wedding team of Norfolk Botanical Garden. I like to call them "The Hair Club."

The wedding team of Norfolk Botanical Garden. I like to call them "The Hair Club."

ps- Ladies, thank you for the snacks! ;)

Crystal and I talked via text message and email for the majority of planning. It was so nice to spend the afternoon watching her work. I first met Crystal at a wedding I was in over two years ago. I am so impressed by her ability to take command of the scene while shooting. I highly recommend her to anyone looking to connect for weddings, portraits, or styled shoots. Plus, I'm fairly confident she made me look a whole lot better than I actually did. #magiccameraskills

My fairy godmother, Sharra, worked her hair and makeup magic on this mug. Then, she stayed on set to do whatever needed to be done. I'm quite sure she spent the majority of the time following me around with my train so I could do stuff. Girl is a champ!

Overall, everything went according to plan. As soon as we started shooting, a dark, scary cloud moved toward us like a full-throttle steam engine. We nervously scooted around the gardens, all the while keeping our eyes on the skies. Thankfully, we captured everything, packed up, and cleaned up without a single drop of water. I cannot wait to share the shoot with you....but not until it gets published. So this iPhone photo will have to do...

I'm wearing Maggie Sottero from Maya Couture. Cal is wearing Jos. A. Bank.

I'm wearing Maggie Sottero from Maya Couture. Cal is wearing Jos. A. Bank.