Summerset Inn Wedding | Whitney & Kyle

Whitney & Kyle’s wedding was, hand’s down, one of my absolute favorite weddings of my career. The perfect mix of non-traditional, do it our way, kind of flow and all of the pretty little wedding day details that people like me drool over. First off, I absolutely love it when a venue is personal to a couple… and it could not have been more personal than getting married in your childhood home. Lucky for me, it just happens to also be one of my absolute favorite local wedding venues, Summerset Winery. They were married in the vineyards and spent the rest of the day and evening at The Inn, Whitney’s childhood home. Seriously… if you know me, you already know that this alone puts this wedding in my top ten. We actually planned our own wedding at Summerset back in the day.

When I arrived everyone was still getting ready. The guys and girls were casually mingling together all throughout the house.

Iowa Winery WeddingSummerset WinerySummerset Winery

Although they had a first look coming, they weren’t afraid to cross paths before they were ready and even spent some quiet time together rehearsing their vows. Which, by the way, were INSANE! I’ve never seen a couple do tandem vows before and wasn’t sure how I felt about the lack of surprise in hearing the other one’s promises, but it was so moving and so real I’m a huge fan of this nonconventional approach. Iowa Vineyard WeddingThey each wrote private letters for the other one to read before their first look. Whitney and her dad shared a moment before she had her first glance at Kyle too. Love!!
The sun popped in and out all day while we did our portraits. I tried to keep the lighting in my edits pretty true to the natural light, it offered us so much variety and was so pretty in so many different ways. Can we talk for a minute about this dress????
 Rather than wear their own wedding rings for their portraits, they chose to wear their spouses ring since they were not quite married yet. It was a thoughtful and intentional decision. And… another little touch that I just loved about this couple. During a quick patch of downtime we had, I snapped some quick portraits for some family members before the cocktail hour began. Then grabbed a handful of extra shots before they started greeting their guests. This property is just perfect for entertaining. So pretty and so many areas for people to spread out and get comfortable.
How amazing is it that Cyd’s made a custom cut out of the Summerset logo for the bread??? As you may have imagined, the wine was flowing at this wedding. Beer too… As their cocktail hour came to an end, their guests made their way to the vineyard for the ceremony. Many of them hiked through the woods, the family did.
Now, back to my commentary on their vows… I have never seen such an engaged group of guests at a wedding. Their vow exchanged seemed to draw in their guests just as much as it did each of them. It really surprised me how truly meaningful the experience was. When it came time for the ring exchange, they took that upon themselves as well and did not receive a word of instruction. As the sun set, a champagne toast was poured for each guest in the vineyard before they all returned to The Inn for the reception. Seriously, if you’re looking for a party band… Pie in the Sky is who you need. Not your traditional wedding band. So. Much. Fun.

Vendor Love

Venue | Summerset Winery & Inn (Ceremony in the Summerset Vineyards, all other activities at The Inn)

Caterer | Cyd’s Catering

Florist | Hy-Vee

Videographer | Situasian Films

Bride’s Dress | Effie’s Bridal Trunk

Groom’s Suit | Heimie’s Haberdashery

Band | Pie in the Sky

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Tara + Brody | Full Preview

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Glen Oaks Country Club Wedding

It’s been such a long time since I’ve photographed a Glen Oaks Country Club wedding and I was just so excited to get back there that I couldn’t wait but throw up a good sized sneak peek, even though their film is just being sent out today. I was actually quite excited that it rained throughout the night too. We were left with a relatively overcast day to work with, which meant no restriction on location and we could truly shoot wherever we wanted on this beautiful course. Not to mention, rain is kind of becoming their thing as it rained on the day we shot their engagement photos too.

country club weddingwest des moines photographerdes moines wedding photographeriowa wedding photographerglen oaks country club weddingglen oaks weddingiowa wedding photographerThis day was filled with so many special and emotional moments, it’s just so much fun to go back through and edit. Below is when Samantha and her father shared a moment together before her first look with Anton. life art photographs bride and father first lookglen oaks country club weddingfirst look

Katie McDonald, my studio partner at Wheelhouse Studio joined me to photograph Samantha and Anton’s wedding that day. I absolutely adore working together. We shot both photo and video and will be sharing our video work in the weeks to come. I absolutely adore working together! Our styles are quite distinct, and yet so complimentary that it blows my mind each and every time we shoot a wedding. As I culled through the images it was so fun to see how we each produced a set of images that is true to our own individual styles, but when they are combined together they coordinate so well together it becomes hard to tell who shot which image. Now that we’ve gotten to know the lay of the land, we’re so looking forward to our next Glen Oaks Country Club wedding. glen oaksbride and groomwedding photo ideasdes moines wedding photographeriowa wedding photographerglen oaks weddingwedding pictures wedding at glen oakswedding photo ideas at glen oaksdes moines wedding photographerwedding photographers in des moineswedding photographers in iowaglen oaks wedding

Keep watching the blog for a peek at their film images and video!


FLORALS: Shelly Sarver Designs

BRIDE’S DRESS: Maggie Sottero from Bridal Boutique in Lewisville, TX

GROOM’S TUX: Vera Wang from Men’s Warehouse

DECOR/RENTALS: Vintage Love Rentals

VIDEOGRAPHER: Wheelhouse Studio


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Jenna + Matt | St. Ambrose Cathedral

You may remember Jenna & Matt’s engagement session from not so long ago… In fact, there were two different versions posted (one digital and the other one of their film scans). I knew that their wedding at would not disappoint and it surely did not! Amazing venues like St. Ambrose Cathedral and the downtown Marriott combined with Jenna’s classic, yet trendy sense of style were sure to be a winning mix. Not to mention the fact that the two of them are just so effortlessly in sync with one another it makes them such a joy to photograph. I photographed both digital and film images of their wedding day, but could not help but put up a post containing solely film images after seeing how amazingly beautiful they all turned out.

I’m typically a huge stickler for sharp image, with a focus point that is intentional. More times than not, when I miss focus I’ll toss the image. On a rare occasion you get a keeper like this one. The following set of images are from their first look. The first image came out unintentionally out of focus, but I thought it was so beautiful and the missed focus almost seems to provide meaningful context in the situation as well. Two lives yet to be defined before they become one… as they touch, it all becomes clear.

Needless to say, I’m in love with how this shot turned out. St. Ambrose Cathedral

Keep watching for a full post of their wedding day with a combination of digital and film shots in the coming weeks. Their entire day was filled with beautiful moments, so much to share!

Jenna and Matt chose each of the following vendors to help put their wedding celebration together:

Wedding Venue: St. Ambrose Cathedral

Reception Venue & Hotel Accommodations: Marriott, downtown

Florals: Cam Bam Custom Florals

Bride’s Dress: Bridal Connection, Ankeny



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Baby A

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Molly + Jason

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