Saturday, November 26, 2011

Stephanie and Pete - 11.11.11 - Naples, FL Wedding Photographer

This wedding was as amazing as it looks... SO many thanks to Stephanie and Pete!

View more photos and order prints from both their wedding AND engagement session in Chicago HERE, and save $25 when you spend 200 by entering the discount code: 25off

Their story..

It all started off at a local sushi bar in Naples, FL where Stephanie was out with a group of high school girlfriends for dinner. Pete was also there with friends and after much encouragement he went up to talk to her on her way to the bathroom. Yes, very romantic. Pete can still remember what she was wearing that night and knew that he had met someone special and couldn’t wait to see her again. The relationship started out very slow, there being a six year age difference, and Stephanie still in high school, her parents were not Pete’s biggest fans. Although, over time, Pete’s determination and witty charm won over the hearts of Stephanie and her family.  After four years of dating, they were ready for a change and moved to Chicago where Stephanie studies at DePaul University and Pete owns a real estate brokerage.

On a foggy summer afternoon Pete took Stephanie for a picnic to their favorite place in the city down by the lake where you can see the entire city skyline. Unbeknown to Stephanie, Pete was planning to propose. He had hired a pilot to fly overhead with a banner on the back on the plane saying, “Steph, will you marry me? -Pete.” The entire day Pete was so nervous and Chicago’s weather was predictably unpredictable.  The fog was so bad you couldn’t see someone standing 10 feet in front of you, so how would she see the banner in the air? But as the picnic went on, the fog began to lift and just in time the plane came into view and Pete got down on one knee! It was so romantic and shocking!
After dating for six and a half years, it was time to tie the knot. We couldn’t of been more excited for our wedding day. All of the preparations and planning were finally going to pay off. When planning the wedding we didn’t have a theme, I just knew I wanted lots of white flowers and tons of candles. I wanted it to feel romantic and full of life. My husband was so nervous about standing in front of so many people, so to calm his nerves we opted for an evening ceremony under the stars, which gave it an even more intimate feel. With the lights shinning on us, he couldn’t even see our family and friends watching and it made it feel like it was just us there. We also chose my husband’s father to marry us, which made a very special ceremony. The reception had an elegant vibe, with white table linens and silver candle holders and centerpieces with hydrangeas and roses.  The large crystal chandeliers shimmered in the candle lit room. It was the magical fairy tale that I had envisioned.  The music pumped through the lively room and the guests danced the night away on the dance floor. The first dance was to Brad Paisley’s song, “Then”. The special moment that we both won’t forget was seeing each other for the first time.  We opted for the nontraditional way and saw each other before the ceremony. It was just us and our amazing photographer to capture the magical moment. We got to actually take it all in and enjoy the moment of seeing each other prepared to become husband and wife. Another special touch that made our night perfect was the photo booth we rented. Our guests got to take silly photos of themselves and then they added the photos to our guest book. and wrote something to us along side the photos. It is something that we can look at and laugh for years and years. The funny faces will never get old. The night was everything we had hoped for and more. It was perfect and it was our night. We got to celebrate with our family and friends as we became husband and wife. It was such an amazing night!

Wedding Details

Ceremony and Reception Site- Royal Poinciana Country ClubNaples, FL
Photography- Clane Gessel (Email:
Videography- IHeart Films
Wedding Planner- Jessica James Events
Photo booth- Photomagic
DJ-John Scott
Bridesmaid dresses- Jenny Yoo
Formal Wear- Men’s Wearhouse
Hair- Robert of Philadelphia
Makeup-Purely You Spa
Cake- Ella’s Cakes
Invitations-William Arthur

Many, many many thanks to miss Heather Thomas for flying out and helping me with this wedding... Photos wouldn't have been as amazing without you.