John & Ali
Willam Allen Farm
September 29, 2018
+Blog written by Tara Clark of Double H Photo+
Arriving at the William Allen Farm the air was warm and the sun was shining. It was the perfect day for an autumn wedding in Maine. A large red barn sat front and center surrounded by yellow and orange foliage. We immediately fell in love with the venue
& were anxious to see Ali & John!
We head in to the bridal suite first where we were welcomed by the bride & her best girls! The atmosphere was relaxed and playful- both welcoming and full of excitement.
When asked by one of her bridesmaid’s, “What are you most excited about Ali?”
She responded with, “Cake?"
And after a room filled with laughter, Ali continued with- “I’m just being funny -I’m excited about the vows.”
Ali’s dress was one of our favorite’s this year! The lace and slim fit made for a classic look while the lower back and beading brought a more modern feel.
Close by down the road John and his guys were getting ready at an Airbnb . They were enjoying a few beers and laughs as they teased John about his sock choices.
“I just expected like a caricature or something, you know?”
John explained with a big smile, “Time, you know? I got these like two weeks ago.”
John was ready to marry Ali- he was eager for the first look- as were we!
It was nearing the moment Ali and John were waiting for the most, not the cake, or the vows, but their first look.
John was waiting for her, back turned, in front of the barn. She approached him and put her hand on his shoulder, the smile on his face grew ten times when he saw Ali in front of him. They drank each other in -their hands smoothing jackets and touching lace. We all shared in the moment. Goosebumps in full swing and tears filling anyone’s eyes who looked on. John was overjoyed and couldn’t seem to get enough of Ali’s look. We could tell that John’s reaction gave Ali all she needed to begin one of the biggest days of her life.
“Ali and John, thank you for choosing us for such an important time in your lives. From the very beginning you two have been nothing but accommodating, welcoming and thankful. You allowed us total creative freedom and we appreciate you for putting your faith into our work. We absolutely adore the two of you and your families.” -Hannah
After their first look, it was time for formal photos. John and Ali willingly took off into the woods after finding the most incredible private path. Soaking in the moments, as they held hands tightly, walking along the dirt path surrounded by all the foliage. They were thankful to have had some alone time together before their ceremony.
The ceremony was to take place next to the pond. Perfect spot! Guests gathered on the lawn, taking off their sweaters and shawls to bask in the warm sunshine as they took their seats. In perfect synchronicity, John and the bridal party walked down the aisle to an instrumental rendition of “Here Comes the Sun.”
John’s face lit up when Ali came into view! It was as if they hadn’t experienced a first look at all. A certain level of giddiness that touched his entire face. Their officiant, Maria (who did the most incredible job), welcomed everyone and began to tell the story of Ali and John. She said they met at the end of the bar at Sonny’s in Portland and gave each other the ultimate chance. These two shared something with each other that night - on a whim, a happenstance; and it brought their entire lives together. They spoke of their love for dogs and Ali’s love for dogs. In fact, the officiant shared a poem called, “Love is like Owning a Dog.” It was perfect for these dog parents.
As we mentioned earlier - Ali’s dress was one of the favorites of the year…as was this ceremony!
The vows held our attention & we couldn’t help but soak up every word.
John began explaining how important family was to him. He wanted someone who was strong and self sufficient; someone who was his equal partner. He found these qualities in Ali. He gazed lovingly at Ali as he told her he looked forward to starting a family and that she would be be an incredible mom to their future kids. He chuckled as he told her that she embraced all of who he was. He promised to work on his listening skills and to get ice cream with her whenever she was craving it. He ended with, “I promise to say ‘I love you’ everyday -because there won’t be a day in my life that I don’t.”
Ali was next, holding her vows and beaming at John. She shared that he was just too good to be true. He embraced the crazy adoration and love she had for her dogs. She thanked him for climbing her walls and revealing her worth. He helped lessen her fear of the future. She confessed that she was a stronger person because of John being in her life. She ended with, “I vow to be yours -always yours for the rest of my life.”
Once they were pronounced husband and wife they shared a kiss- smiles widening as they turned to face their loved ones. They walked up the aisle to the proud clapping and whistling of their family and friends. Ali and John, along with their bridal party and family headed to edge of the field for a few photos. John’s family had everyone laughing with their photo antics. We’re not mentioning any names -cough Susan and Luke cough -father like daughter they say. The Muzzy Clan was lucky to gain one more and it was clear Ali fit right in with Susan, Todd, and John. Once all the photos were finished Ali and John grabbed a drink and headed to mingle and greet their guests.
We loved that they made time before the ceremony for photos so that after they could have more time to spend visiting with guests!
The barn doors opened and guests began heading in for the reception. The dinner had a farm-to-table feel loaded with rich flavors and a satisfying ending. The entire dinner had a family meal presence and we think that’s exactly what John and Ali hoped for!
The speeches began towards the end of dinner.
Michaela, the MOH, spoke of how she and Ali became friends in middle school and had been through a lot of firsts together growing up- which strengthened their bond. Richard, the best man, and John had begun their friendship in fifth grade! He mentioned that even though they didn’t see each other all the time it was like no time had passed and they picked up where they left off.
When the time came for their first dance, they took everyone by surprise with their classical dance moves. It turns out they took dance lessons together in preparation for their first dance as husband and wife! They were so cute as they followed their counts and steps with the occasional slip up which had them laughing.
“I feel as though I took some of my most favorite portraits during their first dance- so much laughter and realness came out.” -Hannah
Ali and her dad had also taken dance lessons together! We thought this was just the coolest thing. Ali’s father’s presence brought so much light to Ali.
When it was time for the mother and son dance it was immediately playful and fun -in true Muzzy fashion. Susan and Todd joined them on the dance floor and they all danced together. There was not a dry eye in the room :)
Once the dance floor opened, everyone hopped to their feet to enjoy music and dance alongside the Bride and Groom.
John & Ali,
Thank you for bringing us along to capture your big day together!
Rumi said, “May this marriage be full of laughter. Our everyday in paradise.”
We have no doubt you two will spend your lives together full of laughter. May all your best moments be shared together…. and with your dog babies. :)
All the love,
Double H Photo
Hannah, Robyn and Tara
+SPECIAL SHOUT OUTS+
Maid of Honor: Michaela Lessard
Best Man: Richard Munster
Bridesmaids: Lindsay Lindvall, Kara Taliento
Groomsmen: Kevin Mahoney, Justin Phillips
Bridal Party Hair: Caryn Cambra
Bridal Party Make-Up: Samantha Clark
Cake by: Two Fat Cats 47 India St. Portland, Maine 04101
Floral Arrangements: Maine Event Design and Decor