When & where did you get married?
May 5th, 2018 at the Charlotte Harbor Yacht Club in Port Charlotte Florida
Is there any significance to the date or location?
My older sister got married at the same location 3 years earlier
Tell us about your gown?
My gown was by Essense of Australia with a beaded top and in the fit and flare style. I chose to go with a "blush color" to show my unique style instead of the traditional white.
Describe your man?
Andrew is hilarious but serious all at the same time. He is always making me feel loved and special and always knows the right thing to say. When it came to wedding planning he was pretty hands off but wanted to stick with a traditional style which I loved.
What traditions did you incorporate into your wedding day?
We made sure the first time we saw each other that day was when I walked down the aisle, the anticipation was so high and made for such a special moment.
Favorite wedding moment?
Our first dance was my favorite moment. It was really the only time all night we were able to be just the two of us, even though everyone was gathered around. I wish I could relive that moment over and over.
Detail your flowers for us?
We both wanted very simple, hence the single flowers in the centerpieces, I absolutely love garden roses so we made sure to incorporate them in my bouquet which with very neutral in color which complemented my dress. My bridesmaids carried hydrangeas with complemented the location and spring time feel we were going for. Also, the orchids hanging in the tree for our ceremony were absolutely my favorite part of our decorations. They were so delicate and beautiful and our guests could not stop talking about how much they loved them. They created the perfect backdrop for the moment we said I do.
Describe your day in one sentence?
Our wedding day was the most magical day of my life that I wish I could do over and over again.
Best advice for a bride to be?
Relax and enjoy every moment and don't sweat the small stuff because before you know it the day will be over.
How did you get started as a photographer?
I needed to find an outlet while earning my bachelor's degree in Psychology, so I took up Photography as a hobby when I didn't need to write papers or take exams. That was seven years ago, just having fun with a Canon Rebel T2i with the kit lens.
How many years have you been in business?
After earning my degree, I decided to go full time with Photography instead (the flexible hours were more appealing than an office job). I am celebrating my fifth year being full time!
What types of photography services do you offer?
I specialize in Wedding, Maternity, and Lifestyle Newborn Photography. I offer family photography as well, and just this year I started partnering with local "boss babes" in helping them brand their business with head shots and product/stock photography.
Tell me a little about your wedding packages?
I offer four packages, ranging from a three-hour "Elopement" package, to the remaining three based off of what you "Need", "Want", and "Desire" for your wedding day. I provide up to ten hours of service for your wedding day, including a second photographer for a minimum of six hours. I have also partnered with two local business ladies to include extra goodies (aside from the crystal USB and prints), such as a monogrammed shirt for the bride, and delicious monogrammed cookies for the couple.
What type of cameras & equipment do you use?
I have two full-framed camera bodies, both are Canon 6D. My go-to lenses are my 50mm 1.4 and 24-70mm. I also have a 85mm 1.8 and 15mm 2.8 lens. I use a couple of basic soft box lights on tripods for weddings, as well as four Shanny SN600SC Master Flash Speedlights. My favorite camera bag is the Kamrette Lyra Backpack!
For editing, what programs do you use?
When I first started, I solely used Photoshop CS4. It literally took me four years to integrate Lightroom into my editing workflow, and I regret not doing it sooner. PhotoMechanic has also been a game changer for my turn around time, as well as BlogStomp for my website and blogging.
What sets you apart from other photographers?
I am very patient, and I take my time with my clients. My website may say I shoot within a certain time frame, but if I feel like I didn't get what I needed for my client, I stay longer. I always shoot prior to sunset, and I schedule the session ahead of time to allow any wiggle-room I need if a child isn't cooperating or I am not confident enough in what we have gotten so far. I am also very laid back, and I am not bothered by children that may not be cooperating (or the husbands, ha!). I work with a lot of stressed out mothers, because let's be honest, a family session can be very stressful. I try to make the process as easy as possible on the parents, reassuring them their children are not a bother and we will get what we need. This rule also applies to the Lifestyle Newborn Session(s). I allow up to three hours for the baby to nurse as much as needed to get the sweet photos. For weddings, if there isn't a wedding planner present, I run the timeline - and my brides love that. It's a race against the clock, all the while making the day as stress-free as possible for my bride and groom. I have been a hairstylist, make up artist, janitor, and seamstress on a wedding day when it was needed; this is when I am so very thankful to have my second photographer to capture the moments while I am filling in a gap. Be rest assured those moments are rare, but it's better than a stressed out bride!
Has your work been featured?
Yes! You can find me on Beyond the Wanderlust, Wedding Wire, In Beauty + Chaos, and I am in network with Hulafrog and The Knot. I really need to be better about submitting my work; it's something I am working on for 2018 and 2019!
How can you be reached?
You may send inquiries through my website, www.heatherfphotography.com . My email is the second best form of communication: firstname.lastname@example.org
Brides may follow my Pinterest for wedding inspiration, and send me their own inspirations for upcoming sessions: www.pinterest.com/heatherfrankkk
Throwing the Bridal Bouquet and the Bride's Garter
On the bridal night in olden days guests would invade the bridal chamber, seize stockings and throw them backwards over their heads toward the bride and groom. The first female guest to hit the groom would be the next one to marry within a year, and the same applied for the first male to score with the bride's stocking. In retrospect, tossing the bouquet and the garter certainly seems a much more civilized idea!
Sharing the Wedding Cake
When the bride cuts the first slice of cake and offers it to her groom, she is carrying out an early Roman ritual. In Ancient Rome, couples plighted their troth by sharing food. Indeed, sharing food as a symbol of sharing one's life is practiced in many cultures.
Why Bridesmaids Are Dressed Alike
In more superstitious times, the bride and groom were surrounded by friends of similar ages dressed in similar attire, as a way of confusing evil demons. This way the demons could not find the real bride and groom and bring them bad luck. Today's bridesmaids dress alike, as do the groomsmen, as it's a way of confusing any who would wish the couple ill luck.
Wedding Bells & Honking Horns
The use of wedding bells has been a long standing tradition world wide for many centuries, but the origins date all the way back to Celtic origins. It is said that, not only in Celtic but many other cultures as well, they were used to keep evil spirits away that might cause harm or negativity on the wedding day. Therefore, ringing of the wedding bells, and making loud noises was thought to bestow good luck upon the bride and groom. In Scotland, and most other cultures, bells were also used to announce to the entire town that a wedding had just taken place. They were traditionally rung as the newly married, happy couple were leaving the church.
Today, in Ireland, wedding bells still play a very large role in wedding ceremonies. Brides and grooms are even given a marriage bell as a gift, and it must be placed within a central part of the home. What's even more interesting is that the bell can be used throughout the couple's years of marriage to bring an end to an argument without either partner having to admit that they are wrong!
Since cars do not date as far back as wedding bell traditions, the origins are somewhat newer than most traditions, but interestingly hold very similar beliefs. Car horns and making loud noises were also used to ward off evil spirits; however, honking the horn was often done on behalf of the bride as she rode to the ceremony, not away from it with the groom.
Why Is It Called A Honeymoon?
An old Teutonic custom held that the bride and groom ran away together, found a secluded place and spent thirty days, "until the moon waned," drinking hydromel. Hydromel was a fermented drink made with honey.
With this Ring...
Rings have been with us since time began, but how they became so intimately linked to engagement and marriage is another facet of man's social history. Before the minting of coins as currency, gold rings were circulated for that purpose. When a man gave his bride a gold ring, it signified that he trusted her with his property. During Elizabethan times, the gimmal, a set of interlocking rings, was quite popular. One ring of the set would be worn by the intended bride, another by the groom-to-be, and a third by a witness. All three rings would be united on the bride's finger at the marriage ceremony. Today the diamond solitaire, symbolic of wealth and undying love, is the popular choice for American engagements.
The Bride Wears Something Blue
Part of the old litany, "something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue," which prescribes the talismans a bride should wear on her wedding day, was quite specific about the color blue. Wearing a snippet of blue ribbon, or some other bit of blue about her gown, denotes purity, fidelity and love. It was also the color associated with the Virgin Mary.
Rice and Other Fertility Symbols
Showering rice upon the departing, newly married couple is a tradition that seems to have begun in Victorian times. Flowers were sometimes thrown, as well as shoes (satin slippers) in an older custom, but the throwing of rice -- long held as a symbol of fertility -- made its appearance about 1870. Confetti, little paper cutouts of horseshoes, hearts, and other motifs, also became popular to toss at the new couple. Both the rice and the confetti, however, presented some concerns. Though eaten by birds, rice wasn't a healthful item for them, and confetti presented difficulties in cleanup. Birdseed became the accepted substitution for rice, and fresh flower petals are often used. Blowing bubbles, instead of tossing tiny missiles, has become the modern send off for the bridal couple.
The Groom Must Not See His Bride
Tradition holds that the groom must not lay eyes on the bride the day of the ceremony until they meet at the altar. The superstition is that this can bring the couple bad luck, since they have glimpsed the future before it has happened. Reaching even further back into tradition, because most marriages were arranged by family members, the newlyweds were very rarely allowed to see each other. Family members that exchanged a dowry (property or money brought by a bride to her husband on their wedding day) feared that if the groom was not attracted to the bride, he may refuse to marry her. This is also why brides were "given away" by their father to the groom at the actual ceremony. Most all grooms saw their brides for the first time upon lifting her veil just prior to the ceremony.
Carrying the Bride Over the Threshold
When the groom carries the bride over the threshold, he is reenacting a very old tradition derived from many cultures, and one which can be traced to Roman times. This ritual was carried out to protect the bride from worrisome demons which might be lurking about the new home. If she were to trip entering the doorway, it would bring bad luck to the couple. This unhappy chance was avoided by carrying her through the doorway and over the threshold.
How did you first meet?
My dad actually introduced Samir + I (unintentionally). My father + Samir's father have been friends for about 25 years. It was Samir's birthday weekend + his father was hosting a pig roast to celebrate. We hit it off pretty much immediately. We were both amazed that in the 25+ years our fathers have known each other, we had never met.
What is the most attractive qualities about your fiance?
Samir is the utmost respectful man. He always holds the door for strangers, and without question - if you needed the shirt off his back, he would give it to you. He is also such a hard working, dedicated man. He works 60+ hours a week still finds time to love & spoil me. His mama definitely raised him right!
What is your fondest dating memory?
Our first weekend in Savannah. I took a road trip to see him about 3 weeks after we'd met. He was living in Georgia, near Savannah for work. That weekend was amazing! We explored the city together, ate amazing food, and honestly I knew I was going to spend the rest of my life with him. That was the weekend I fell in love with him.
What day did you get engaged?
June 21st, 2018
Where & how did he ask?
He proposed at home. He asked me to spend the rest of my life with him, and without a doubt I said YES!
Wedding Date & Location
November 2019 - Port Charlotte, FL
How many years has your venue been established?
We’ve been doing weddings for over 5 years now.
What types of events can you accommodate?
Mainly weddings. But we can do other events as well.
What are your ceremony options?
We offer the Oaks for three days. The day before for setup, decorating and rehearsal. The day of. And the day after for cleanup. Most people choose to have their wedding under the oak tree canopy, and their reception in the barn, but others have opted to have their wedding in the barn as well. (Also an option in case of rain)
What is your capacity for any event?
We are rated for 210 in the barn, but usually recommend 150 and under unless they choose to bring in additional tents.
What is your deposit amount to reserve the room & date?
We require a $1,000 deposit, but break it into $500 due at time of signing the contract, and $500 due 30 days after receipt of the contract.
What is the food & beverage price range?
We allow the couple to provide their own caterers. We also offer a bar b w pad if they want to have onsite bar b q cooking.
What are some complimentary rental items you include?
Our venue rental includes the three days, the brides room, grooms room, caterers corner, claw foot tubs for sodas, water, etc., restrooms, fire pit and wood, whiskey barrel bar, ceremony site with rustic woodland benches, and tables and chairs for the reception for up to 150 people. Also includes the barn curtains, chandeliers, and lighting. We have also just completed a 30 x 24 outdoor area perfect for dining or dancing under the stars. Our current price is only $3,500 for all of this if you book in 2018-May of 2019. Now accepting bookings for 2019 and 2020.
Perks and benefits of booking with your venue?
We tell couples that they are the artists, the Oaks is their canvas, and we want them to “paint” their wedding the way they and Pinterest envision. We also offer a Clydesdale and princess carriage option at an additional $500.
What are your bar options?
We provide the whiskey barrel bar, they provide their beverages and their bartenders.
Looking for the perfect venue in Punta Gorda to host your next wedding, party or other special event? Look no further- here is the 10 Best Punta Gorda Venues.
1) Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center tops our list with it's waterfront views and banquet seating for up to 1000. The Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center has the size to hold just about any event. Located at 75 Taylor Street Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
From ceremonies on the water’s edge to intimate receptions accented by a spectacular sunset we are nestled on the tranquil Charlotte Harbor, painting the perfect backdrop for your special day. Source: www.charlotteharborecc.com
2) Cypress M. Ranch- If your looking for an authentic ranch wedding Cypress M. Ranch is the place to book! With it's private bridal cabin and cowboy quarters, a newly remodeled catering kitchen and on site restrooms. This property is perfect for your country chic wedding. Located at 43650 Bermont Road Punta Gorda, Florida 33982.
Cypress M Ranch is the perfect setting for your dream western wedding or any special events. We are nestled in the midst of old Florida beauty with cypress trees & flowing creek yet centrally located to Punta Gorda, Sarasota, Ft Myers & Naples. Source: http://www.cypressmranch.com/
3) Laishley Crab House- With gorgeous views of the Charlotte Harbor and delicious seafood options a plenty. Laishley Crab House has a rustic nautical feel that can easily be transformed if your heart desires. Located at 150 Laishley Court Punta Gorda, Florida 33950
Laishley Crab House is pleased to provide services for functions and events. We offer full catering services, an event room that seats 150 people, and a conference room that seats 20 people. We are convienently located near major hotels, and shopping & cultural centers. Laishley Crab House has boat and marina access. Source: https://www.laishleycrabhouse.com/functions.html
4) Punta Gorda Isle Civic Association- The PGICA is a perfect blank slate for any wedding or special event. With ample space in both the auditorium and meeting rooms it fits most wedding sizes just right! Located at 2001 Shreve Street Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
The PGICA is a popular location for events hosted by our clubs, association members and community members outside of the association. Available for rent are the auditorium, meeting rooms and outdoor pavilion. A wide range of events have been held here, including weddings and receptions, birthday parties, celebrations of life, financial seminars, educational programs, corporate meetings, entertainment, and much more. Source: http://www.pgica.org/facility_rentalInfo.html
5) The Wyvern Hotel - With Punta Gorda's only roof top bar the Wyvern Hotel has got the edge on sophistication. With their newly remodeled restaurant 88 Keys and the banquet/meeting room - River Room on the first floor you have two options for your intimate wedding with a cocktail hour on the roof top and accommodations for your guest all wrapped up in one hotel. Located at 101 E. Retta Esplanade Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
Whether you are planning a business meeting, family reunion or wedding reception, the 650-square-foot River Room on the lobby level of The Wyvern Hotel is perfect for intimate gatherings of all types. From full catering and event design services to on-site technical support, we work with you throughout the planning process to ensure that your function at our Punta Gorda venue is considered an unparalleled success. Source: https://www.thewyvernhotel.com/gather/
6) The Bayfront Event Center is a perfect blank slate for all kinds of special events. Not only do they include full use of all the tables and chairs the affordability of this venue is a major perk. Located at 750 W Retta Esplanade Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
The Bayfront YMCA Event Center is located on Charlotte Harbor in the heart of downtown Punta Gorda. Our event room can hold up to 200 people with over 3,000 square feet of space for your next event. Bayfront is a beautiful location for weddings, anniversary, birthday, graduation or engagement parties, baby shower, staff get together or conferences. Rental of the Bayfront includes tables, chairs and use of kitchen which has an oven, microwave, refrigerator, freezer and ice machine available. Source: https://www.swflymca.org/locations/bayfront-center/bayfront-center/
7) Punta Gorda Woman's Club has a large, open floor plan and the rental price includes full use of the stage and outdoor gardens. What a little gem! Located at 118 Sullivan Street Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
8) Captain's Table located at the end of Fisherman's Village offers picture perfect views of the water and delicious cuisine for a wedding up to 75 guests. Located at 1200 W. Retta Esplanade Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
You and your guests can take in the stunning views and elegant ambiance while enjoying the freshest seafood, mouthwatering steaks and finest service that only the Captain’s Table Restaurant can provide. Our staff would be happy to assist you with every detail of your next business function, wedding reception, rehearsal dinner, birthday celebration, anniversary party or other special occasion. The private dining room is available for groups up to 75. Source: http://thecaptainstable.com/private-dining/
9) Twin Isle County Club- Enjoy golf course views at the country club located at the southern end of Punta Gorda at 301 Madrid Blvd.
The main dining room with wonderful views of the golf course, comfortably sits over 200 guests, making it perfectly suited to host events. An exceptional culinary experience awaits you under the direction of an award winning executive Chef. In addition, the dining room can be partitioned off to accommodate smaller private functions and business meetings. Source: https://www.twinislescc.org/Dining
10) Four Points by Sheraton has the perfect lawn overlooking the beautiful Charlotte Harbor. Perfect spot to host an outdoor event under the stars or a tent. Located at 33 Tamiami Trail Punta Gorda, Florida 33950.
Filled with a passion for weddings, events and marketing- Marie has been with our PCF team for a number of years. Behind the scenes with her organization skills and design talent. Reach out to her with any questions you might have!