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How To Find Your Soul-Mate Photographer

houston wedding photographer c wright photography swish and flick how to guideSoul-mate photographer, you ask? Is this even possible without spending a million dollars? Yes yes yes! I have to confess I hired a wedding photographer for my wedding who I loved creatively but I don’t think she fully “got” Robert and I as a couple. Had I followed some of these rules I might have gone in another direction or approached the day differently. And that’s not to say I dislike my wedding images, they are ahhhmazing! I am just saying they could have been even better had we gotten to soul-mate level.

Price vs Quality

The first thing that happens when you start looking for a photographer is you try to find a photographer whose images you love and fall within the budget you have {hopefully} established. A budget you hopefully didn’t get from The Knot, as their cookie-cutter budgets don’t take into account people’s priorities. They said I should only spend $80 on a hotel room with a $14,000 budget, which is unrealistic. I am now off-topic!!

H’ok. So you have loosely created your budget and are trying to find a photographer that fits within there that has images the speak to you. My best advice is to figure out what kinds of wedding images speak to you. Are they dark and moody? Light and airy? Bright and colorful? This will be the best jumping off point for you to start Google searching photographers in your area. You can also go to sites like Style me Pretty, Borrowed n Blue or Wedding Chicks and look up local photographers. If these photographers are featured there you will get a good gauge on their style.

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Christmas Minis Pt 1 | Houston Portrait Photographer

Christmas was less than a month ago {yay because uhhh I still have decorations up in the house}. This year I had them at Little G Farm as they have an awesome fence and a driveway that won’t quit! I had them styled with blankets, cute signs, hot cocoa and cookies. Thank you to Gracefully Sassy for the styling. Thank you to Good Gosh Ganache and Okie Doughkie!

The Winigers

Their son shyly said hi to me as we met, so I spent a few minutes asking him questions and finding out what he loved. That was the secret sauce! From there we were best buds during the session. They all loved the cookies and hot cocoa. It all created adorable moments!

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Top 5 Ways to Rock Your Engagement Session

top 5 ways to rock your engagement sessionYour engagement session is a great way to bring your love story to life! Like Tony Stark and Pepper Potts, your relationship might not have happened right away, but there was alway a spark. Your engagement pictures area great way to incorporate your passion for each other and the things that brought you together. For our engagement session, you bet your bottom my husband and I incorporated some Survivor elements into it {that was how we met, online, on a website devoted to the TV show Survivor}. Telling your story and looking awesome are just a few of the things to think about for your engagement session.

Location

When deciding on your location you have tons of options. You can use a blank slate, like a park to tell your story. You can choose a restaurant or location that is important to your relationship. Where did you go on your first date? Do you both love ice cream or coffee? All of those places are great choices for great pictures that can capture your personalities. If you are a more rustic couple, pictures at a barn or open field could work like a charm. Movie buffs? What about a movie theatre? Book lovers? A library would be an awesome choice. Comic books your thing? A comic book store to start and ending at a coffee shop while reading your favorite volumes would epic! The world is your oyseter and your shoot can be anything you want it to be.

Houston engagement photographer Swish & Flick

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How to Hire Your Vendor Tribe for Your Wedding

how to hire your vendor tribe for your weddingWith a vast amount of couples recently getting engaged and jumping into wedding planning, this how to guide is here to help you navigate hiring your vendors. You are essentially planning a big party, with a lot of people contributing to it. It can be overwhelming, and more times than I care to admit, I have heard horror stories about everything to florists, to bakers, DJs and venues to {gasp!} photographers. You don’t want that to be you!To help you make the best decisions possible, here are a few tips from my experience both as a bride and as an industry professional.

Contracts

Have one!

Promise me now, you will not hire any vendor without signing a contract. A contract you have read and understand. This piece of paper isn’t there to just protect the business owner; it’s there to protect you too. It sets the expectations for both parties to come together and do business. The wedding industry is made up mainly of self-employed individuals, and if you know the ‘right’ person, you might get a great discount {yay you!}, but don’t hire them if there isn’t even a whisper of a contract. That contract holds them accountable for their services to you and outlines payment, among other things.

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How I Got Engaged | Niagara Falls Proposal

It feel like a forever since I got engaged, even if it was just 6 years ago. Since Robert and I lived so far away, I knew he was going to do this on one of his visits that year. We had been talking a lot about getting married and the entire Visa process for me to move to Houston. I knew we had to get engaged sooner rather than later to start the process. In case you don’t know, it takes about a year to become a permanent resident in the USA if you get approved.

The Day

So I went into the day with a large inkling it was happening. Robert is great in many ways, but he normally doesn’t take the reigns when it comes to planning a day of activities. I knew when he wanted to plan our day at Niagara Falls that something was up. As well, this trip his parents were visiting, and staying at Niagara Falls, so it didn’t take much for me to put things together.

Niagara Falls engagement

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Houston Bridal Extravaganza–A How-To Survival Guide

The Houston Bridal Extravaganza happened over the weekend. According to its site over 5,000 brides attended to get help planning their wedding. Hundreds of vendors were there to get seen by brides they normally wouldn’t have access to, and although the space is well-organized, it is still overwhelming. So if you went over the weekend, feel free to add to my survival list!

Have a Plan

Going into an extravaganza where there are 400 vendors vying for your attention requires planning. Get with your significant other and know what you need for your wedding. Make a list of what it is you are struggling to find and what you both want from the vendor. If you go in saying “I need a venue”, but you don’t know what kind of venue, where you want it to be, you will be overwhelmed. There are a ton of choices! Everything from elegant and intimate {The Gallery is a great example for this one}, to out in the country {White Oaks or 2k Reserve come to mind}. There are a lot in-between and they all have beautiful displays.

Same thing with photography and videographers–you will find there are a ton, with various styles. So before you go, sit down together and look at wedding images and decide what style you like. Do you like dark and moody {Endless Exposures is a great example}? Light and airy {Christine Gosch is great at this}? Bright and colorful {Stacy Anderson Photography rocks at that}? Or do you want someone who has more of a feel to their images–like soft and romantic or documentary-style and less posed. Thus, having a plan will help you eliminate vendors and help you stay on track.

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Houston Wedding Photographer – Heaven on Earth

Why Heaven on Earth

Heaven on Earth is up next on venues I photographed at in 2016. This venue reminds me of Kendall Plantation, specifically the reception area. You can see the magic of that wedding here.

Getting Ready

Heaven on Earth is this huge home that has two separate bedroom areas for both the bride and the groom to get ready in. The bridal area has an ornate bed, which is perfect to showcase the dress for pictures. It also has many different ways in and out of it, so it gives the photographer the ability to be a fly on the wall if they choose, while the bride is getting in her dress.

strawberry-pickin-1strawberry-pickin-2Houston wedding photographer

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Houston Wedding Photographer – Gamez Wedding

Houston Wedding Photographer – Gamez Wedding

I couldn’t help but fall in love with this couple as soon as I heard their adorable story. The now newlyweds met through their mutual friend at a UFC viewing party. Their love story began while Stacey finished school. The age-old phrase must be true– distance really does make the heart grow fonder, which I know from personal experience with my husband! Thus, when she moved back to the area, their love blossomed. On their 5-year anniversary, in front of the Houston skyline (the same spot where Jorge told Stacey he loved her for the first time) he popped the question.

The Wedding

The ceremony was held at the Prince of Peace church, a gorgeous Catholic church in North Houston. The pastor during the ceremony made the traditional funny and personalized.  The setting matched the couple’s colors, royal blue and silver, to the breathtaking stained glass they were married under. La Tranquilla Ranch, which is a few miles down the road, is where the reception was held. A mariachi band serenaded the guests throughout the night– what a fun surprise for everyone! My favorite detail from the reception had to be the candy bar, but really, is that a surprise? They had such a variety of tasty treats to suit every kind of sweet tooth. As the night wound to an end, the couple made their grand exit under an arch of sparklers. A perfect ending to a perfect day.

I loved the touches that represented the couple, from the groom’s cake, to the fireman hats. The shirts the women wore before getting into their dresses. The sparkly Keds Stacey wore after the ceremony. These two really do make a genuinely amazing couple. Not only that, but the people they chose to surround themselves on this sacred day in their lives tells so much about them. Thank you for letting me into your lives and granting me the honor of getting to know the two of you better.

Vendors:

Cake: Who Made the Cake? {http://whomadethecake.com/}

Ceremony: Prince of Peace Church {https://pophouston.org/}

Reception: La Tranquilla Ranch {http://www.latranquilaranch.com/}

Dress: Princess Bridal {http://theprincessbridal.com/}

Flowers: Cornelius Florist {http://www.corneliusflorist.com/}

Bride Tribe Sign: Dixie & Twine {https://www.etsy.com/shop/DixieAndTwine}

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