{you are the story. i am the narrator.}

{you are the story. i am the narrator.}

Mr. & Mrs. Castañeda

Shay and Andrew’s Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos were some of my favourites from last year. From the wrap around porch at Shay’s parents’ house to the vintage dress for which Shay searched high and low, the wedding party in shades of blue to the invitations the couple designed themselves, every gorgeous detail was in place for this July wedding. The most remarkable thing about the wedding day, though, wasn’t its perfection. Instead, I found it beautifully reassuring that Shay and Andrew’s priorities were easily apparent in their day: launching into marriage.

But let’s back up. You probably remember Shay and Andrew from their beautiful sunset engagement photos (also in Rancho Palos Verdes), and the sweet smiles and beautiful look this couple shared. I knew I was in for something special on their wedding day, but nothing could have prepared me for all the delight and joy that was to come.

Rancho Palos Verdes Wedding Photos

It was hot. Even with a white house and a white porch, white inside, white everywhere, it was hot. But that’s July in California, no matter how close you are to the bluffs in Rancho Palos Verdes, and Shay and Andrew’s wedding took place walking distance from the cliffs. As I arrived, final setup for the nuptials was still underway; on one side of the house, Shay and her girls were starting to get ready, and on the other, the groomsmen were killing time and waiting out the heat.

shabby chic wedding details photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Remember what I said about perfection? Well, here it is.

shabby chic vintage wedding dress photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosvintage wedding getting ready photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Shay gave her bridesmaids the prettiest collection of gifts, all in these lovely clutches with each bridesmaid’s initials monogrammed on the front. Hello, thoughtful!

bridesmaid gift getting ready photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosvintage wedding dress getting ready photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

After getting into her dress, Shay did a bridesmaid first look. She had this beautiful look of glee on her face as she came out–and the bridesmaids’ reactions were adorable, from matching her laughter to shedding a few tears. It really was a sweet moment, and I’d love to have more of these in future weddings!

bridesmaids first look wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Okay, can you say, “Best groom getting ready room ever?” Because I can, and I’ve only ever said it about this library/billiard room combination. When I walked in on the guys playing pool, I almost died of happiness. Plus that cute little bowtie the ring bearer is wearing? Too much. I loved it all.

groomsmen getting ready photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

One of my favourite things about photographing weddings is having a peek into the relationships holding up my couples. Watching Andrew’s brother help him into his wedding day suit was so meaningful.

groom getting ready photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Shay and Andrew opted to have a first look so that immediately following the ceremony, they could join their guests. I found a cute little nook on the porch that was just right for their first moment together on the wedding day. (And can I just say how much I love wrap around porches, and that I kinda sorta wish I could shoot some Southern backyard weddings to get a little more of it?! Gah. Backyard weddings in general are a favourite of mine, and then once you take them classy and shabby chic like this? Perfection.)

private estate first look wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Can we take a moment to observe the rareness of a twenty-person wedding party that is not only extremely well-behaved, but also super friendly and helpful? It tells a lot about a couple when they’re surrounded by this much love and support.

large wedding party photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Isn’t Shay’s bouquet a dream?

bridal portraits vintage wedding dress photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Never failing to come in as one of my favourite moments, the guys took a moment before the ceremony to pray for Andrew and Shay’s wedding, and bless the groom. <3

groomsmen praying photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Oh, and gelato for the guests (and for Andrew, before Shay walked down the aisle.)

private estate ceremony photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosrancho palos verdes wedding ceremony photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosfirst kiss wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Okay, these two had the whole wedding party bawling during the father daughter dance and the mother son dance. It was clearly really special for Shay and Andrew to have these moments with their parents on their wedding day, and with their moving relationships on display, there was not a dry eye in the place.

first dance wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosbouquet toss wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

At last, a beautiful grand exit through a tunnel of their friends!

grand exit wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

And as our last stop before this sweet couple stole off to their honeymoon, we headed to the bluffs for some classic Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos, romantic and scenic, showcasing the beauty of the place. I mean, c’mon, look at that gorgeous blue sky!

rancho palos verdes cliffs wedding photos | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosromantic wedding photos in rancho palos verdes | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photossweet wedding photos in rancho palos verdes | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosprivate estate wedding in rancho palos verdes | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photosoutdoor wedding photos in Southern California | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photoswilderness wedding photos in Southern California | Rancho Palos Verdes wedding photos

Shay and Andrew, it was such an honour to be a part of your day, and I can’t believe you’ll soon be celebrating a year! Thanks for choosing me as your photographer! I loved every second of my time with you.

comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

follow the stories on instagram

@megankuethenPhoto