I don’t think I have ever been so invested in a wedding as I was with Meredith and Matthew’s wedding. From the very first conversation, it was all hands on deck with planning, logistics, locations, and looks, which is great. I love that stuff! A successful wedding isn’t just providing beautiful images, but creating a memorable experience for the couple. Everything was in place after months of planning…then Covid hit. Their wedding at Saints Peter and Paul and the Detroit Athletic Club was on hold.
I felt so bad for Matthew and Meredith. Their original wedding was to take place at the end of March. At the peak of their anticipation leading up to the wedding, the state (and the nation for that matter) shut down. All we could do was sit and wait until it was safe to start planning again. I felt honored when Meredith told me that moving forward, I had to be her photographer. I was just as committed as she was to making wedding 2.0 happen and to make it even better.
After several months, a new plan started to emerge; one that was honestly even better and more authentic than the first. Instead of compromising on the locations to fit the original timeline, we made the timeline fit the locations. We made the day family and photo-focused. It was very important to Matthew to be married in the church, which I thought was a beautiful value to uphold. With that, Meredith and Matthew had their wedding at Saints Peter and Paul Jesuit Church in downtown Detroit.
Meredith got ready in her house with her sister and bridesmaids nearby, keeping her laughing and in a jovial mood. It wasn’t hard to do as everyone was excited for the day to finally be here.
Once Meredith was dressed, she shared a beautiful moment with her dad, seeing her for the first time.
After Meredith was ready for her wedding at Saints Peter and Paul, we headed down to the Detroit Athletic Club, where Matthew and his family were enjoying a quiet morning before they needed to get ready. With some help from his parents, Matthew put the finishing touches on his wedding attire and looked like a handsome gentleman.
Since Matthew and Meredith would be saying traditional vows at their ceremony, they wrote their own personal vows to each other to read before the ceremony. I love this idea. (Becky and I did the same thing and those words are now framed and hanging in our house as a reminder.) For special moments like this, it is always best to make it private and let the words and emotions sink in.
With a few minutes to spare, we used the beautiful backdrop of the DAC for some portraits of Matthew and his family.
Soon, it was time for their wedding at Saints Peter and Paul Jesuit Church in Detroit. I may be partial because I too was married here, but it is one of my favorite churches in Detroit. The aisle is long, the lighting is beautiful, and the couple sits facing the congregation. Overall, it is a beautiful church (and Detroit’s oldest) to have a wedding.
Matthew was quite emotional when Meredith came down the aisle. It was touching to see him respond so genuinely and vulnerably when he saw his bride for the first time.
One of my favorite photos to take during the ceremony is the sequence of the kiss, the celebration, and the walk down the aisle. With ceremonies being formal, this is the first time for the couple to let a little of their own personalities shine.
With Matthew and Meredith being officially married, it was time to celebrate. I was so happy for not only them, but their whole families to finally get to experience this moment.
First stop, shutting down Woodward for a little celebratory stroll.
One of Meredith’s dream locations for her wedding was to photograph at the DIA. The clean elegance of the DIA was the perfect backdrop for Meredith’s colorful bouquet and bridesmaids.
Adding to the list of reasons why their wedding was perfect, the DIA was empty so we took our time and enjoyed the opportunity to photograph them in some beautiful spots.
After the DIA, we continued downtown, slowly making our way to the top of the Ren Cen for dinner at The Highlands.
The view from the Highlands was beautiful. The intimate gathering of guests enjoyed three course meal and plenty of memories.
As we wrapped up our evening, friends and family were waiting at Matthew’s family’s house, ready to welcome and celebrate with the newlyweds.