Archive for the ‘Weddings’ Category

edmonton wedding photographers haley shandro

Merry Christmas everybody!!!

I’ve been saving this post to be my last of 2015 because it was one of the highlights of my summer.  Katrina and Rich had an English garden-inspired wedding at the Hotel Macdonald and everything was glamorous and perfect. Katrina has been planning her wedding since she was a young girl, and it was fabulous to see all of her dreams come together for her special day.

Also exciting (and another reason I had to wait to put up this blog post) – their wedding was featured on WedLuxe!

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Katrina is SO bubbly, and she and Richard are incredibly in love.  Instead of my usual post, I’m going to let Katrina do the talking about their wedding!

The morning

To keep with tradition, we kissed each other goodnight of Friday and said “see you at the church”. Richard stayed at the Hotel MacDonald and Katrina stayed at her parents. In the morning, the girls woke up to an amazing breakfast spread that her auntie and mom’s best friend made. To calm the nerves, the girls huddled around and said a prayer to help both Richard and I focus on the magnitude of the day and help us live in the moment. The girls sipped champagne mimosas while getting their makeup and hair done in the kitchen. The girls day started much earlier then the boys. The boys grabbed an early lunch in their room and then got dressed. A little less chaotic. They even had time to take some shots around the hotel. Both of us wrote letters to each others parents, thanking them for raising us and instilling values that each one of us treasures in each other. Also, we wrote letters to one another. Thank goodness Katrina read these letters prior to makeup application. All morning both of us felt like it was Christmas morning and you just can’t wait to get downstairs to open presents.

The ceremony

The ceremony to us was the most important part of the day. After all, this is where we became husband and wife. We wanted our guests to see, hear and feel our love throughout the ceremony. We had an amazing string quartet play beautiful songs that we both connected with. My mom, baba and gido, ring bearers, groomsmen and Richard and his parents walked down to Pachelbel Canon in D. Then the flowergirls, bridesmaids, and Katrina and her dad walked down the aisle to “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri. When this song started to play, both Richard and Katrina were both overwhelmed with emotion. This was it. This was the moment we started our next chapter: marriage. This song also has meaning as after Richard proposed, Katrina said a “a thousand times yes”. The church was absolutely stunning. The aisle covered in handmade green garlands that had eucalyptus in them. The scent was unreal. During the whole ceremony, Richard and I could stop staring at each other – our eyes were locked on one another. It felt like we were the only people in the room – however, now looking back at our wedding video the place was packed. The readings, prayers, sermon were all perfect. When the priest said, “I now pronounce you husband and wife, Richard you may now kiss your bride”, we felt a surge of energy and locked lips. Meanwhile “A Beautiful Day” started to play. We were on cloud 9 walking out of that church. Such an amazing vibe.

Reception

All week the weather was calling for rainstorms and lightening, but the day was absolutely perfect. We got beautiful pictures of the big Alberta blue sky and then some amazing stormclouds in the background. We were so fortunate. We were able to have our champagne and cocktails out on the terrace that overlooked the entire River Valley. As we had a lot of people traveling to Alberta for the wedding, we wanted to ensure they got to soak up the beautiful landscape. The cocktails were a blast.

We chose to sit at a sweetheart table. When Richard and I go for dinners we always sit side-by-side. It felt only natural we sat this way at our wedding. Also, we chose to have our family and bridal party in front of us at their own tables, so that we could have some time during dinner to connect. This was really important and I think it’s one of the reasons we felt the day didn’t fly by. We got to recap our mornings, how we felt walking down the aisle, during the ceremony.

The speeches were fabulous. They made the whole room crack up laughing.

We then kicked off the dance with our first dance, which when splendid. I guess our 15 min rehearsal of playing the new Cinderella movie and trying to replicate the dance while our nieces and nephews danced around too did the trick. There was not a dry eye in the room during the father daughter dance. Such a special moment.

The band was incredible. 8 piece ensemble that played awesome music right up to till the end. You know it’s a great party when the dance floor is full at 1 in the morning. The party was so much fun. We even had wedding crashers!

We ended the night with Richard sweeping me up and carrying me into our room. The whole day was everything I’ve been dreaming of since I was a little girl – a magical environment with love oozing from everyone.

 

 

 

 

All of the fabulous vendors!

Wedding Planner: Cocktails and Details
Ceremony: St. George Anglican Church
Reception: Fairmont Hotel Macdonald
Stationery: Pinkpolka Invitations and Stationery
Floral Design: FaBLOOMosity
Wedding Gown: Hayley Paige from Delica Bridal
Bridesmaids Dresses: Jenny Yoo
Formal Wear: SUITS by Curtis Eliot
Makeup: Ashley Saskiw of East West Beauty Collective
Hair: Terwillegar Hair
Decor Rentals: Elegant Touches and Chic Boutique Rentals
Cake: Carlene Saskiw
Entertainment: Side One
Cinematography: Jaymarie Studios

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Extra special thanks to my second shooter Jesse for being generally AWESOME!

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Dolly and Mike were married in Hawaii just before I shot their reception at Woodvale Community Hall on the Millwoods Golf Course. We know Dolly from other weddings that we have shot, and I was honoured to be able to shoot her reception. Because they traveled for their wedding, Dolly and Mike had a travel theme for their reception with unique handmade centrepieces on each table representing different destinations around the world.

Dolly and Mike met in Zumba. They are both instructors. It was incredible seeing the passion that Dolly and Mike have for each other physically expressed through their dancing. The dancing at the reception was phenomenal as many of their family and friends share their love for dance.

– Michael

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Ashley & Adam’s wedding was my last of 2015, and I can honestly say that I gave them every ounce of energy I had left, and a little bit extra after all the Red Bull that I had!  I was buzzing with excitement for their wedding not just because it was the perfect way to end my season but also because I absolutely genuinely LAUGH every time I am around these two. They are so positive and bubbly and quirky and happy together and it’s totally infectious.  I’ve had the pleasure of photographing the maid of honour before, and I worked with Ashley’s sister back in my scientist days, so it felt like hanging out with old friends all day.

We went to some pretty cool and diverse locations for photos!  Melissa and the guys got to go into Rexall place for a few before the ceremony at Highlands United Church, and then afterwards we went to Borden Park which easily has some of the most fascinating art pieces this city has to offer.  We finished up downtown at Craft Beer Market, and then I took a stroll with Ashley & Adam for some alone time at the Art Gallery. We basically had a tour of Edmonton!

Ashley & Adam – my wish for your marriage is that you always hold your zest for life and for each other, and never ever stop laughing.  Congratulations!!

– Haley

Hair: Roxx Salon & Spa
Makeup: Eclectica Beauty Studio
Decor: River City
Dress and Suit: Bridal House
Cake: Cake Affair
Reception: St. Albert Inn

Ashley wore her great grandmother’s locket – a family tradition!

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Thanks to Melissa for all her hard work on this wedding and all year!!

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I can’t imagine a better way to spend Hallowe’en than shooting Amy and Kim’s wedding at the Matrix Hotel. In the morning the ladies got ready together at the hotel. This was the first wedding that I have been to with the religious portion presided over by a Buddhist monk. It was beautiful and calm.

Amy and Kim are bookworms, so we popped over to Audrey’s Bookstore for a few pictures, then we lucked into getting inside BLVD Kitcken & Bar before it opened so that we could take some pictures in front of their huge library wall.

At their intimate reception, everything was tastefully decorated in an orange and black pumpkin theme. My second shooter Ali was fun to work with as always. She posed the two skeleton lovers to look at each other. Fun for a Halloween wedding!

Amy and Kim, you had a beautiful wedding and I wish you a wonderful future together!

– Michael

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I have to admit I don’t totally remember meeting Kelsey & Parker the first time – I was shooting Parker’s brother Pat’s wedding to Kristy, and I their family is HUGE! Fast forward 5 years, and it was Parker’s turn! When Kelsey and her sister came in to consult with me about the wedding I’m pretty sure it sounded like there were about 15 girls in the room – we chatted and were very excited about everything, and I couldn’t wait for this wedding!

Kelsey & Parker met in high school and have been dating since they were 15.  They an outdoorsy and rustic couple and Kelsey knew immediately after Parker proposed on the side of the river that she wanted to have a fall wedding.  We absolutely lucked out with the weather, and the timing of the fall leaves couldn’t have been more beautiful.  Everybody was really relaxed and happy despite some pretty chilly weather, and by the end of the night Kelsey and I had a Lady and the Tramp moment with a gingerbread cookie, and everyone was busting a move on the dance floor, especially the kids!!

I’m so happy for these two love birds, and want to say a special thank you to the whole bridal party and all of the family who helped make the day run so smoothly!!

– Haley

Florist: Drayton Valley House of Flowers
Cake: Cake Affair
Hair & Makeup: Jack’d Up Beauty
Wedding Dress: The Bridal House
Groom’s Suit: The Tuxedo House

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Behind the scenes with me and Melissa! I’m short, so I try to find anything I can climb on to get some height!

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I went to Lac La Biche for my first time to shoot Karissa and Logan’s wedding on his family’s farm property. It was an all-out Western themed wedding where the groomsmen wore cowboy hats and the entire bridal party donned cowboy boots. Karissa arrived at the ceremony in a horse-drawn wagon! Even the ceremony corral and wedding arch were hand built by family. This is the first wedding that I have been to where sunflower seeds were thrown at the couple as they recessed down the aisle after they were married. All of the photos were taken at the family properties, and the reception was at the Craigend Hall.

Karissa and Logan have a great connection. They were childhood friends and dated for their entire adult lives until getting married. They were positively giddy for their entire wedding day, and they always have a huge smile on their face when I see them. I am delighted that I got to shoot their wedding with my second shooter Trina.

Florist: Peggy at Hypnotic Bloom
Officiant: Shari Chevigny
Wedding Dress: Sophia Tolli – Novelle Bridal Shop
Bridesmaids Dresses: Tiffany – Novelle Bridal Shop 
Groom’s Suit: Derk’s Formal Wear

– Michael

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Soorya and Curtis’s intimate small wedding was held in the tropical pyramid at the Muttart Conservatory. It was a small, quiet affair. Curtis adores Soorya and he couldn’t stop smiling at her all day.

Congratulations Soorya and Curtis.

– Michael

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This summer I shot Rakiya and Baldeep’s engagement photos in Banff while I was there to shoot Melissa and Nick’s wedding. It was a beautiful day at Lake Minnewanka. We tooks some pictures by the water, then went for a hike in the forest.

The wedding was two months later in the fall. Their Sikh ceremony was at Gurdwara Singh Sabha in Milwoods, and the civil ceremony was held at the Westin Edmonton. I loved how unique their civil ceremony was, held in the reception hall while all of the guests were seated at the tables where they would later have dinner.

The reception was a great fusion of cultures. The guests were treated to choreographed Punjabi dances from the Sikh community, and a Zumba flash mob by Rakiya’s Zumba dance group. The DJ transitioned seamlessly back and forth between Bhangra, Lebanese and pop music. The dance floor was always packed, keeping my second shooter Wil and me busy!

Officiant: Julie Tkachuk
Cake: Crave Cupcakes
Hair: Terwillegar Hair
Wedding Dress: Delica Bridal
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: David’s Bridal
Stationry: PinkPolka
Makeup: Tiiu Antrea

– Michael

 

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Double happiness certainly describes Sandra and Vince! My second shooter Bruce and I spent an awesome day with them – we started with hilarious door games at Sandra’s parents’ house, and then headed out to the gorgeous Renaissance Airport Hotel for their ceremony and photos. I photographed the first wedding that ever took place at the hotel, and it was really cool to go back again. The food there is amazing too!

From their engagement session in Canmore to their wedding, I’ve had a chance to see Sandra and Vince together and how adorable they are together. Vince constantly has a smile on his face, and even more so when Sandra is around. The whole bridal party had us in stitches!

After the sweet ceremony and traditional Chinese tea ceremony, we had a lot of time for photos and Sandra and Vince let me take them on a hike through the river valley – they were up for just about anything I had to suggest!

And it’s a good thing we got a big of a workout….the reception at Beijing Beijing was basically never-ending food! I’ll try anything once, and there were lots of new things for me to try.

Congratulations you two!

– Haley

Ceremony: Renaissance Edmonton Airport Hotel
Reception: Beijing Beijing
Florist: Flowers in the Park
Wedding Dress: Bridal Debut
Groom’s Suit: Moore’s

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Katherine & Tom are both incredibly kind people.  Listening to the stories that their friends and family shared about them at the reception was so heartwarming and I feel lucky to know them.  I have an extra special place in my heart for these two, as shortly after their wedding Katherine joined our family as nanny for our kids and we absolutely love her.  Katherine is such a good mom, and she’s been wonderful with our kids.  I have to say…I’ve loved getting to know Katherine, we have a lot in common and she’s just a fabulous person.

If you read my last blog post you’ll know I LOVE watching the groom’s face as the bride comes down the aisle, and Tom did not disappoint – he could not contain himself when he saw Katherine, and I don’t blame him. She looked absolutely stunning, and what better venue than the gorgeous St. Joseph’s Basilica! Their group of friends was fabulous to work with, and even the kids were easy for me to photograph!

It’s easy to see how much these two love each other and it was an absolute joy to photograph their wedding.  Special thanks to my second shooter Ali for being quirky and awesome =)

– Haley

Ceremony: St. Joseph’s Basilica
Reception: Chateau Louis
Florist: Wild Orchid
Makeup: Mookie Salinas
Wedding Dress: Bridal House
Groom’s Suit: Derks

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