Creed and Elizabeth | Wildcliff Weddings and Events

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Creed and Elizabeth | Wildcliff Weddings and Events

Refined Winter White Elopement At Lakeside Cave In Blackwater, Missouri

An intimate silence fell across the stately grounds. The lake waters were placid. Everything was covered in fluffy white snow, from the pampas grass to the nearly leafless tree tops, and a light fog created a dream-like effect as it drifted atop the turquoise lake. Pops of yellow and green and deep red florals were brilliantly vivid against the snow white landscape. The sun offered a bit of warmth as it peeked out from behind the clouds throughout the late morning and afternoon, and offered a golden glow along the hillside where dinner would be served. Macrame chandeliers and vintage novels paired with jewel-toned blooms perfectly arranged on rustic driftwood and stone-inspired tableware fostered a cohesive and inviting experience for the couple’s friends and family.

This was truly earthy elegance at it’s finest for this raw, yet refined, winter white elopement.

When Austin and Hannah Painter from Wildcliff Weddings and Events invited me to photograph their wedding editorial in November, I’m pretty sure an excited “Yes!” came out of my mouth before they could even finish their sentence! The remote grounds of Wildcliff Events in Blackwater, Missouri offer a perfect retreat for destination weddings in the Midwest. The serene blue-green lake waters and the earth-toned cliff-side cave become a picturesque ceremony backdrop that most couples dare to even dream about. For this editorial, the lake was even more luminous as white snow glistened along the shore, the result of a blizzard earlier that week. The ceremony space was grand all on it’s own, but thoughtfully chosen blooms provided a perfect radiance and tied in well with the hillside reception.

A quaint bridal cottage sits adjacent to the lake and is the perfect blend of old-world charm and contemporary sophistication. Elizabeth’s signature bridal style matched seamlessly. She wore a white lace gown and natural makeup with a simple updo. A playful felt hat added to the fashionable elegance. And with an unexpected visit from a handsome white horse with baby blue eyes, Elizabeth’s bridal portraits became nearly dreamlike!

Elizabeth and Creed, our bride and groom models, were a treat to photograph. They were both playful and joyous and brought out the delight in this editorial. Their refreshing sense of humor and brilliant smiles illuminated any space they occupied, but especially at the sweetheart table under the sycamore tree on the hillside. As the evening sunlight kissed everything it touched and all-white macrame chandeliers suspended above them, Elizabeth and Creed were nothing more than pure happiness as they offered one another a toast.

The hillside reception at sunset offered a colorful end to this organic-inspired elopement. From the elegant wingback chairs for the guests of honor to the simple, natural elements of the centerpieces, every little detail was thoughtfully curated. It truly was perfect styling for a perfect winter retreat.

Photographer: Kelsi Kliethermes Photography | Venue: Wildcliff Weddings and Events | Vintage Rentals: Pretty Little Things | Rentals: A1 Party & Event Rental | Floral Design: Tiger Garden | Bridal Boutique: Belle Mariee Bridal Boutique | HAMU: Nicole Hughes | Invitation Suite: The Ink Cafe | Film Lab: Photovision Prints | Models: Elizabeth Fairchild and Creed Flood


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Matt and Emily | Ten Year Anniversary Session Jefferson City, Missouri

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Matt and Emily | Ten Year Anniversary Session Jefferson City, Missouri

Autumn Anniversary Session At Wilson’s Serenity Point

If ten years of marriage looks this good, I cannot wait until Blake and I celebrate this milestone!

Matt and Emily Kliethermes are our sweet neighbors (and we’re not related at all, coincidentally!) and I was elated when they scheduled a Driftwood Mini Session with me this year! This couple absolutely radiates joy and are so fun to be around. And let me just go ahead and give them the best dressed award for the year, because Matt’s suit coat paired with Emily’s sage velvet dress is just magnificent!

Congratulations on ten years of marriage (a little early) Matt and Emily! Thank you so much for allowing me to document this important milestone for you!


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Gabrielle and Logan | Missouri River Driftwood Mini Session

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Gabrielle and Logan | Missouri River Driftwood Mini Session

Autumn Around The Banks Of Missouri River, Jefferson City, Missouri

This sweet couple inspired my Driftwood Mini Sessions this year! I remember Gabbie posting an image from last year’s mini session with Logan on her Instagram Story a few months ago and asked if I would do more mini sessions this year. Of course anytime I can get these two awesome people in front of my camera I’m going to say yes!! It was so much fun catching up with this ambitious and incredibly kind couple. The evening sun softly diffused through the golden maple and sycamore trees to create a perfect setting for their session along the driftwood shore of the Missouri River.

Thank you for choosing another mini session with me this year, Gabbie and Logan!


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Joey and Elizabeth Robinson | Wedding at The Legacy Barn

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Joey and Elizabeth Robinson | Wedding at The Legacy Barn

Snowy Fall Wedding in Barnett, Missouri

As Joey’s Best Man and brother straightened the tie around his neck in the groom’s room, Elizabeth was slipping into a white gown made perfectly for her across the hall. She smiled at her mother and soon to be mother-in-law who stood near the large window of the bridal suite as her sister and Matron on Honor laced up the back of her dress. She truly glowed, a perfect and most beautiful blushing bride on such a cold fall day in Mid-Missouri. Snow blanketed patches of the ground and glistened in the afternoon sun and ice-sickles gripped firmly to the roof of The Legacy Barn, but it was cozy and warm inside as Elizabeth glided down the stairs and into the great room. Joey stood ahead of her in the aisle way, and she swayed back and forth, nervously, shifting from one leg to the other before she walked up to Joey and hugged him from behind. Smiling, he turned to face his Bride, who was radiant. He lifted a hand in the air and said, “You. Look. Beautiful.”

Joey and Elizabeth, who have been friends for so long, were finally preparing to say, “I do.”

As their friends and family rose out of their seats, the double doors were opening behind them to reveal Elizabeth and her father grinning ear to ear. Elizabeth looked at her father and they shared a laugh. Her eyes then met with her groom’s and she shed a tear. I turned to see Joey’s reaction to his bride making her walk down the aisle and he was wiping away tears too. Elizabeth’s father held her arm a little tighter and lovingly gazed at his daughter who he was about to give away. And with Elizabeth on her father’s arm, her mother’s touch upon her hand, and Joey’s brother and Best Man’s hand steadily braced on his shoulder, Joey and Elizabeth and their new marriage together were prayed over. What a beautiful moment!

Highlights

  • Elizabeth and Joey tied the knot on Saturday, November 10th at The Legacy Barn in Barnett, Missouri. This lovely barn restored to a wedding venue was a charming setting for an intimate wedding, and let so much of the evening autumn glow indoors!

  • The newlyweds performed a tree planting ritual during their marriage ceremony that they will plant at their new home together, a wonderful reminder of a beautiful day.

  • Joey, Elizabeth, and their entire bridal party were so great to brave the below freezing temperatures for portraits outdoors before the ceremony! Just look at those golden veil shots!

  • This sweet couple is proof that wonderful emotion can still be present during the ceremony, even though there was a first look! If you’re thinking about writing off a first look because it might take away from the emotion of the grand entrance at the ceremony, think again! Joey and Elizabeth both shed tears during the grand entrance of their ceremony, and they had a first look hours prior!

Congratulations to the new Joey and Elizabeth Robinson!

Bless your marriage!

Venue: The Legacy Barn | Rentals: Custom Occasions LLC | Florist: Versailles Greenhouse | Bridal Boutique: Mias Bridal | Hair Artist: Sarah Smith at Elements Salon | Makeup Artist: Jessica Jane at Once Upon a Bride | DJ: Around The Clock Mobile DJ | Suits: Men’s Wearhouse | Bridesmaids Gowns: Azazie


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Kent and Cheyenne Shikles | Mighty Oak Lodge Wedding

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Kent and Cheyenne Shikles | Mighty Oak Lodge Wedding

Lakeside Fall Wedding in Lebanon, Missouri

A melody drifted along with the brisk breeze in the air as Cheyenne made her way down the paved pathway to the grand oak tree just ahead. Kent was waiting for her there, underneath the twisting ornate branches with leaves that were just beginning to change their color for fall. What a climactic moment, as this was the first time that Kent had seen his Bride all day, and she was a vision. He held her hand as her mother gave her away. They smiled sweetly at one another as their preacher officiated the ceremony, and couldn’t contain their laughter when their pup, Rhett, softly whined from the audience to be with them. With the nearby lake rippling in the wind and surrounded by so many of their favorite people, this was the moment that Kent and Cheyenne would begin their marriage.

Highlights

  • Though rain had been predicted for their wedding day, Cheyenne and Kent were greeted with sunshine and pleasant temperatures during the morning. Almost as if it were on cue, the clouds and a brisk wind blew in at the start of their marriage ceremony, leaving behind brilliantly vivid colors in the surrounding landscape!

  • Kent and Cheyenne have a shared love for dogs, so their sweet pup Rhett was destined to make an appearance on their big day. He was most content being near Kent and Cheyenne and loved greeting guests with a big smile.

  • The newlyweds had a fun way of getting their guests involved in their reception celebration. Each table had a card with a song, and when the corresponding song played during dinner, that was the guests’ cue that it was their turn for dinner! How neat is that?!

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Shikles! It was an honor to witness your beautiful wedding!

Bless your marriage!

Venue: Mighty Oak Lodge | Planning: Elle Palmer | Rentals: Mighty Oak Lodge and Reinhardt Circle | Florist: Above and Beyond | Bridal Boutique: Norman’s Bridal | Jeweler: Henley Jewelers | Jewelry: Kendra Scott | HAMU: A Good Hair Day | DJ: Elite Lighting and Sound | Catering, Bar, and Cake: Reinhardt Circle




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Tanner and Hannah Wells | Blue Bell Farm Wedding

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Tanner and Hannah Wells | Blue Bell Farm Wedding

Autumn Sunset Wedding in Columbia, Missouri

It was almost time for her to slip into her dress, but first there was a letter to be read from her soon to be husband. She sat in the middle of the bed in the bridal suite ready to read his letter when her bridesmaids walked in, surprising her with a gift from all of them. It was a book, and inside was a letter not only from her fiance, but notes, well wishes, letters, and pictures from her bridesmaids and her father as well. Tears streamed down Hannah’s face as she glanced at each page, and when her friends left the room she read Tanner’s letter silently with a smile on her face.

What was predicted to be a cold, windy, and rainy day turned out to be brilliantly sunny and warm. Only slight breezes plucked golden leaves from the limbs of trees, whirling them about in the air before they landed on the ground. Hannah held the ends of her veil at her sides as she faced the open golden fields. Tanner stood ahead of her, and when she called out his name he turned to see a most beautiful Bride. A smile beamed across his face as he grabbed Hannah up in a great hug, swaying her back and forth a little. “You look beautiful!” he exclaimed, and kissed her. This was truly the perfect setting for the first day of their marriage.

Surrounded by a wonderful group of loving and selfless friends and family, Tanner and Hannah celebrated becoming Mr. and Mrs. Wells at Blue Bell Farm on October 27th. Lovely shades of blush, burgundy, ivory, and deep greens ran throughout the course of their day, and paired wonderfully with the fall foliage outdoors. With comfortable temperatures throughout the day, guests were treated to an indoor and outdoor experience at the venue, with dinner and dancing inside and cocktails and bonfires near the veranda.

Highlights

  • Hannah and her mother exchanged gifts with one another just before Hannah’s first look with Tanner. It just so happens that they unknowingly gifted each other the same gift, a locket!

  • Tanner and Hannah had the fun idea to replace name cards with pumpkins for their bridal party. The face of each pumpkin had a member of the bridal party’s name written, and they were simply darling!

  • Right after the couple was announced for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Wells, they were greeted with a petal toss for their grand exit. It was a really fun way to get their guests involved in their ceremony.

  • The Bride and Groom really love portraits at sunset, so before the big day we made sure to incorporate “just married” portraits during golden hour into their timeline. As you’ll soon see, their wedding day ended with a brilliant sunset!

Congratulations Tanner and Hannah Wells! Blake and I are truly honored to have documented all of the amazing memories of your wedding day!

Bless your marriage!

Venue: Blue Bell Farm | Planner/Coordinator: Kristen Thackery | Rentals and Design: Pretty Little Things and U.S. Rents It | Florist: Sugarberry Blooms | Bridal Boutique: Breeze Bridal | Gown Designer: Eddy K | Bridal Shoe Designer: Gianna Bini | Jewelers: Buchroeders and Duncan II Jewelry | HAMU: Once Upon a Bride | Singer: Jordan Heckemeyer | DJ: S&S DJ Solutions | Catering and Hors D’Oeuvres: Lutz Famous BBQ | Cake: Wanda Higgins | Popcorn Bar: Osage River Popcorn | Bar Service: Blue Bell Farm | Videographer: John Pattyson




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Joe and Rachel Kempker | Maternity

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Joe and Rachel Kempker | Maternity

A blissfully cool and quiet fall evening on their family farm was the perfect setting to document this most important milestone in Joe and Rachel’s lives. The rolling hills paired with the evening sun created a warm glow that illuminated the countryside where the pair often take walks before sunset. Rachel wore a lovely burgundy gown the flowed elegantly over her first ever baby bump.

Before they know it, Joe and Rachel’s lives will be forever changed, for the better, as baby boy Kempker will make them first time parents.

While this is a very special “first” in this sweet couple’s lives, they also made this session a “first” for me: my first maternity session. What a distinct honor it is to be considered a lifelong photographer. Just a little over a year ago I was photographing these two as they became husband and wife, and how special it is to be asked to follow them throughout their lives to document their story as it continues to unfold.

Though I met Joe and Rachel for the first time when they asked me to photograph their wedding, the pair have grown to be close friends with Blake and I. We often get together during the week for dinner and a card game or two, and at one of our most recent gatherings Rachel let me feel baby Kempker rolling around in her belly! I’ve never experienced anything quite like that, and it quickly makes you realize how precious and mesmerizing life is.

The Kempkers were down for anything during their session. We mostly laughed and joked around, but we ended the session with a beauty of a portrait vision that Rachel had. There is a very mature oak tree that magnificently stands on the bank of the creek below their house. Rachel said, “It reminds me of the tree of life.” I placed them underneath the tree and then walked through a nearby pasture (bravely, I might add…as their cows were staring at me like a crazy lady) to take the shot. I took 20 images, in fact, and stitched them together to create one of my very favorite panorama portraits ever! As I stare at that portrait of two wonderful and loving people who are about to welcome a new life into this world, as the sun is just about to set over the hillside yet offering a glow through the trees of that proud oak, I think of a line from “The Giving Tree”:

“Once there was a tree, and she loved a little boy.” 

Joe and Rachel, thank you so much for trusting me with your portraits and giving me this honor. I cannot wait to meet Baby Kempker really soon!


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Miles and Daniela Walker

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Miles and Daniela Walker

She waited, smiling, hidden just behind the fence row covered with established butterfly bushes and roses as their son Mason toddled down the aisle. Rumbles of thunder were heard softly in the distance, but the warm October sun shed it’s light here and there about the clouds. The band strummed a lively tune, and as she stepped out for her grand entrance I heard a guest say, “This is like a destination wedding!” Miles stood stoically at the arbor ahead as Daniela glided down the aisle. Winsome lavender snapdragon petals led the way, tossed about earlier by Miles and Daniela’s grandmothers (who were the loveliest flower girls!). Daniela WAS radiant, the epitome of it, wearing a loving and proud smile and the pearls from her mother’s wedding dress in her veil and on her gown. This was their time, and as the cedar branches swayed and monarch butterflies drifted in the breeze, Miles and Daniela became husband and wife.

Mr. and Mrs. Walker tied the knot with an intimate celebration in the quaint and secret butterfly garden at Dodson Orchards on Sunday, October 7th. The venue looked more like the romantic French countryside rather than Southeast Missouri! From the first look to the thoughtful details to the first dance, everything was so special and loving and all that Daniela and Miles’ relationship encompasses. The selfless couple treated their guests to lunch and champagne with a shuttle ride to the ceremony and dinner, drinks, and live music at the reception. Everyone left with a wonderful experience and truly wonderful memories.

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Miles and Daniela planned the color scheme of their wedding around the colors of the sunset: soft pastel pinks and purples and pops of subtle orange and hues of deep blue. I was shocked at how well this theme ran throughout their entire day! The pair made extra room in their timeline to have a small and intimate sunset session in the vineyard, and I cannot wait to receive those film scans!

  • Daniela’s wedding gown and veil were extra special, as the pearls in her gown and on her veil were hand-sewn one by one from her mother’s wedding dress.

  • Miles and Daniela each read handwritten vows to one another, while their sweet son Mason took a front row seat to witness in the aisle ;).

  • Both Miles and Daniela’s grandmothers were the flower girls! They had the greatest time sprinkling petals before their granddaughter would make her grand entrance. It truly was an honor!

  • As a lovely touch, fresh figs were hand cut and placed delicately in each table centerpiece. They were quite the talk of the evening, also making their appearance on the jaw-dropping wedding cake!

Congratulations Miles and Daniela! Blake and I absolutely loved every minute of your special day. Thanks for choosing us to share in it with you!

Bless your marriage!

Venue: Dodson Orchards | Planner/Coordinator/Stylist: Shannon Lemp with My Blush Events | Florist: Butterfields Florist | Bridal Boutique: The Enchanted Bride | HAMU: Jessica Rae Artistry | Jeweler: Mesa Jewelers | Band: Sojourn Rocs | Caterer: Kenrick’s Catering | Cake: Sarah’s Cake Shop


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James and Samantha Derbyshire

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James and Samantha Derbyshire

The day started with matching pajamas and a mimosa toast.

The girls were all smiles and giggles when Samantha popped a bottle of champagne outside of the bridal suite. After whipping up a few mimosas, enjoyed in their special monogrammed champagne flutes, it was time to get dressed. But first, the bridesmaids had a little surprise up their sleeves. They had prepared a scrapbook full of letters they had written to Samantha on her wedding day, and had even included a letter from the Groom himself. This moment was filled with tears and laughter from everyone in the room as Samantha read a few of the letters out loud. Hugging her friends and wiping her tears, it was time to slip into her wedding gown.

James stood still in the wide open field, a blue horizon with cotton candy clouds ahead of him. He slipped his thumb into his pocket and tapped his fingers rapidly, nervously, as the swish of Samantha’s dress could be heard behind him. She carried a lovely bouquet full of untamed, colorful flowers and feathers. “James?” she proclaimed, his cue that it was okay to finally turn around. Years of friendship and memory-making turned proposal and wedding planning all led up to this climactic moment when James was finally going to see the love of his life as a Bride. He turned slowly. When their eyes met he cocked his head to the side. They both smiled, and when he said ‘hello,’ Samantha held out her arms and pulled him in for a kiss and a hug.

It was the first day of fall, and despite earlier predictions of rain the day was beautiful. Sunny, cool, and only slight breezes. “We chose this day based upon the farmer’s almanac,” Samantha said. “It said that today would be the best day in 2018 to get married.” It was right. All of their friends and family from Missouri and beyond traveled to Sullivan, MO. to witness their first day as husband and wife. James and Samantha exchanged handwritten, heartfelt vows during sunset under a jaw dropping arbor that her father had built for the occasion. They dined and danced the evening away, celebrating the first day of the rest of their lives together.

“Today could not have been more perfect.” - Samantha Derbyshire.

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Derbyshire! Thank you for sharing your humble hearts and sweet souls with the world. Bless your marriage.

Venue: Seven T Farms | Rentals: Wright Party Rentals | Florist: Watson’s Florist and Gifts | Bridal Gown Designer: Stella York | Bridal Shoe Designer: Stiefeld Boots | Jeweler: Shane Co. | HAMU: Jenny Bush Makeup: Joy Loveless (assistant Tayler Soaib) | DJ: Mike with Complete Weddings and Events STL | Caterer and Bar: Andre’s Banquets and Catering | Cake and Sweets: Teresa Lynn Cakes LLC | Seamstress: Margo’s A Wedding Place | Officiant: Justin Tunnicliff


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Chris and Alicia Bahr

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Chris and Alicia Bahr

A soft breeze danced across the water of the nearby lake, creating gentle ripples that twinkled from the reflection of the bright September sun. Lovely melodies from “Moon River” drifted through the air with each pluck of the harp. Friends and family visited quietly with one another, shaded from the warm sun with umbrellas. To their delight, a large cloud rolled in and positioned itself directly in front of the sun. It was the only cloud in the sky, and it stuck around until Chris and Alicia shared their first kiss as husband and wife.

Alicia was the epitome of elegance and grace as she made her grand entrance as a Bride with her father. She couldn’t help but smile at all of the guests surrounding her, and Chris couldn’t take his eyes from his Bride. They exchanged vows with sincere hearts before placing handwritten letters to one another in a time capsule along with their favorite bottle of wine. They’ll open this box when they celebrate their first wedding anniversary, and will continue to add letters and a bottle of wine to the box with each anniversary. Their guests could hardly wait to celebrate the two as they were announced for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Bahr.

Chris and Alicia, your wedding day was truly wonderful in every way, and so marriage-centered. It was our honor to be there to capture it, and Blake and I cannot thank you enough for allowing us to witness and document this special time in your lives.

Bless your marriage.

Venue: Little Piney Lodge | Planner/Coordinator/Stylist: Kristi Ruprecht | Rentals: A1 Party and Event Rentals and Pretty Little Things | Florist: SS Wedding Designs | Invitation Suite and Signage: The Ink Cafe | Bridal Boutique: Town & Country Bridal Boutique in St. Louis | Bridal Gown Designer: Lis Simon | Bridal Shoe Designer: Cole Haan | Jeweler: Buchroeders | HAMU: Emily Perkins with The Beach Salon | DJ: Taylor at Complete | Caterer: Swiss | Cake and Sweets: Sugar and Spice Laura’s Delights