There are weddings that happen throughout one’s career that give you pause and reflection. Rachel and CJ’s Hare Wine Co wedding was absolutely one of them. I knew it would carry an emotional weight, both emotionally sweet and tough, but nothing could’ve prepared me for the sheer amount of love that was present on their day.
CJ and his groomsmen (and sweet little flower girl) were gathered in a rental home. The gentlemen shared laughs and inside jokes while they were getting dressed. CJ then presented them with their gift which included their own family crests. CJ exuded happiness and excitement as he spent this time with the men he chose to be at his side.
Rachel was alone in her bedroom when I arrived, having the final touches added to her makeup. Her older brother prepared the steak her soon to be hubby had lovingly prepared for her the night before (a girl after my own heart!) while her twin brother poked his head into the room every so often. Her mom kept herself busy with doing extra laundry to which Rachel laughed and shook her head. It wasn’t long before she was stepping into the gown for the last time before becoming a Mrs.
I rode with CJ to a special location they chose for their first look. When Rachel arrived, their reactions were perfect – CJ couldn’t take his eyes off her. As they had previously discussed eloping, they took that time to read other personalized vows and truly were the only ones in the world at that moment.
We arrived at Hare Wine Co to meet with their wedding party. That’s when the skies decided to open up just enough. But Rachel and CJ didn’t let that put any damper on their day; they grabbed an umbrella and we head into the vineyard. Just as the rain let up, their families started to arrive and the couple took the time to greet their guests. The love and connection they had with each person was beautiful. And when CJ’s dad arrived, it was a whole new bout of tears. His dad had recently fallen ill and it was truly inspiring that he was there to celebrate.
The skies still threatened to rain but Rachel was confident they would wait; she wanted nothing more than the ceremony she had dreamed of in the courtyard of Hare Wine Co. And she was right. The sun peeked out, the guests were sat, and Rachel walked to her groom. The sweet ceremony was officiated partially by her own father. His tears stopping him midway and it was Rachel’s hand that reached out to squeeze his. Her endearing gesture showed their deep connection. With plenty of tears from everyone in attendance, and a hilarious moment with a rogue gust of wind, they were finally married. A happy first kiss then hugs and tears all around.
The guests were treated to an incredible dinner by Your Farm Gate after a beautiful first dance where their Man of Honour and Best Man (and their partners/bridesmaids) joined them part way through. Then it was heartfelt and hilarious speeches to entertain them (including a hilarious song by the Best Man to the groom). In between which we snuck outside at sunset and Rachel shared adorable moments with her grandparents.
It was such an incredibly moving day and I am genuinely thankful to have be witness to it.
venue The Hare Wine Co
cooridator Lasting Events
officiant Cathy Davis + Co | Wendy Murray
florist VonMar Floral Boutique
hair Julie Pelette
catering Your Farm Gate
cake groom’s stepdad
The Hare Wine Co Wedding | Niagara Storytelling Weddings and Lifestyle Portraits | Darling Mine Photography | available for the Niagara region, GTA and all of Canada for weddings for romantic, adventurous couples | www.darlingmine.ca firstname.lastname@example.org | for information on booking wedding coverage, see here