Best Made Videos – Seattle Wedding Videography Blog

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Moriarty Wedding on 8/19/17 at The Four Seasons Hotel in Seattle, Wa

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“Reid and team did a wonderful job capturing our special day! The highlight video did an exceptional job taking in the true essence of the moment. I highly recommend Best Made Videos to anyone who wants to relive their wedding day over and over. Thank you!”

Seattle’s waterfront is one of the most gorgeous in the world. There’s nothing sweeter than spending a day walking on the piers, visiting the great little stores like Ye Olde Curiosity Shoppe, grabbing a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants and tracing the dozens of ferries as they head out into the Sound and beyond. Have any doubts? Just watch the exemplary drone footage (say, that looks pretty familiar, doesn’t it?) that kicks off the Moriarty’s big wedding day!

A sophisticated day for sure—certainly underscored by the early-morning whiskey sipping with all the guys already decked to the nines in their tuxedos—the Moriarty’s decided to have an indoor wedding despite the weather being as clear as could be. Bride and Groom Sasha and Shane wed at the Four Seasons Hotel, just a block away from the world famous Pike Place Fish Market. Their first look, inside the hotel, was simply adorable. In front of a massive window, Sasha came up to Shane who greeted his bride-to-be with excitement and awe. We followed them around the hotel as they took photos both inside and out, the love in the air was palpable.

Soon we headed to a nearby rooftop where the true beauty of the city exploded out from behind—the Space Needle, the Sound, and Queen Anne rising to the north. You really cannot ask for better weather in Seattle—it was unreal. After swinging by EMP for some more fun photos, pictures continued back at the Four Seasons with the bridal party and the family until it was finally time to head inside for the ceremony. Signing the wedding book, guests were greeted by a live quartet playing classical music.

The ceremony, as formal as you’d want it to be with the signature wedding march playing, was pristine and joyous, with white flowers and curtains that perfectly contrasted with the stark black of the tuxedos. With absolute glee, the bride and groom finally sealed the bond with a kiss. They headed off to sign the papers while everyone helped themselves to a beer or two.

Following the cake cutting—with a cake that was almost too gorgeous to ruin—the event space was transformed to a purple that would make the Huskies jealous with the help of dozens of lights that provided the dancers with what they needed to dance into the wee hours of the morning. Everyone had a ball, shimmying and shaking their booties until they couldn’t go on. As everyone kept on dancing, the newly weds made their way outside one last time before the sun set off behind the Olympics in the west. Standing against the glistening sky, the bride and groom shared one last kiss before heading back inside to finish the night off strong.

Thanks again to Sasha and Shane for choosing Best Made Videos to film their wedding! We hope your first six months as a married couple have gone as great as possible. Let us know below if you have any comments or suggestions, we’re always looking to improve!

– Scott Johnson

Photography – Azzura

Venue – Four Seasons Seattle

DJ – Chris Graves

Wedding Planner – Perfectly Posh Events

Beauty – Bridal Beauty Agency, Sorrida Salon

Entertainment – Puget Sound Strings

Photo Booth – 321 FOTO | photo booth rentals

Favors – Lady Yum

Flowers – Flora Nova Design

Rentals and Decor – CORT Party Rental, Sweet n Design, Creative Ice, Prop Gallery Events

Stationary – Songbird Paperie

Transportation – British Motor Coach, Seattle STS Town car, Inc

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Wangner Wedding on 8/12/17 at Dairyland in Snohomish, Wa

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“Reid was absolutely amazing to work with!!! He made videoing our special day, flawless! He is very personable and responds promptly to any and every question we had. He also got us our clip video within a week and our full wedding videos shortly after!! We HIGHLY recommend Reid for your videographer!!”

For the uninitiated–and those who missed our Best Wedding Vows article–you might be surprised to learn that Dairyland is far from the milk theme park you imagined it to be. No, the only white you’ll be seeing her is the bride’s gown–because Dairyland is indeed a wedding venue. To the northeast of Seattle lies a fairly large area of farmland–wide open spaces that, in the right weather, can serve as the ultimate wedding venue. This is where Dairyland (along with Woodland Meadow Farms) lies, and for the last time there are no cows to serve as ring bearers!

The Wangner’s wedding was a glorious day of love, happiness and a touch of the country life. Kicking off the day with hair, billiards, and a game of giant Jenga the spirits were high and the tension was loose. With the tower crashing to the floor, resulting in a loud rumble, it was perhaps time to really get into preparing for the big day.

Gifted a killer golden watch from Erika, Kayla looked stylish in her grey suit without a jacket–which would’ve been pretty impressive on this hot summer day–while Erika rocked an elegant, shoulderless gown. Their first look, which was started with Erika tapping on Kayla’s shoulder and Kayla not immediately turning around, showed the silly, fun-loving nature of the couple. Adorable photos taken in a horse stable and around the venue were an absolute delight as we followed the wide-eyed couple around the estate while they never let go of each other once.

When the ceremony kicked off, I’m sure nobody was expecting the tremendously emotional vows that were delivered by Erika that reduced not only herself, but also Kayla and pretty much the entire audience–even the officiant was getting a little teary! Kayla, a little overwhelmed and certainly sure she couldn’t follow what Erika just said, responded with matching emotions, telling Erika she’s her “best friend for life.”

As guests loaded up on snacks, hung out with old friends and new, signed the wedding book and waited for the reception, the wedding party soon came dancing on into the event space. Cutting their red, messy cake they smear it all over each other before tyding one another up. Their first dance was full of giggles and smiles as they held each other tightly for the first time as a married couple.

The night wore on as they danced away in a barn lit by chandeliers. Once the disco lights turned on, and the DJ started thumping the music, everyone got off their feet to party until they couldn’t party no more. Kayla, removing her jacket, became the life of the party as she hit the middle of the dance floor–heck, they even danced on the table!

Congratulations to the Wangners! We hope the first six months of your marriage was joyous and wonderful! Thanks again for choosing Best Made Videos to shoot your ceremony!

Like what you saw? Let us know below! We are always looking for suggestions and recommendations for what to do next!

– Scott Johnson

Photography – Hannah Wahl

Venue – Dairyland

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Lehuraux Wedding on 8/6/17 at Lord Hill Farms in Snohomish, Wa

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“Best Made Video came highly recommended by our photographer and they did not disappoint. We knew we wanted a videographer since most of my husband-to-be family could not make it since they were international. We wanted them to feel like they were there. Reid was the most responsive vendor we had for our wedding and great to work with. On our wedding day, Joe and Matt were professional, arrived on time, and had ideas for poses for the video. They were awesome to work with and captured our wedding day perfectly. After our wedding, we received our video highlight back really fast and it was amazing. We watch it over and over! I would highly recommend Reid and Best Made Video if you are looking for a videographer! You wont regret it!”

About thirty miles outside of Seattle lies Lord Hill Farms, a highly-rated wedding venue that boasts a seriously stunning estate and plenty of options for your wedding day, especially for those looking to get out of the hustle and bustle of the city. One look from above at the land and it’s clear as day why the Lehuraux’s decided to have their wedding there—it just takes your breath away. Plus they can cram as many as 350 people in for the wedding ceremony and up to 450 for the reception, so be sure to invite all of your cousins, even the ones twice removed.

The Lehuraux’s big day got underway with the bride and groom preparing themselves for the ceremony. On Tina’s side, an entourage of lovely ladies in magenta dresses—which complimented the decadent gown quite nicely—helped her get all primed for the day while the guys on Maxence’s side—rocking magenta ties—were smiling and having a good time.

The two met for their first look in a little walkway surrounded by flowers, which look to be the exact same ones Tina was holding. With a spin and a kiss, the two just couldn’t keep to themselves. There were nothing but cute smiles and wide-eyes, both fixating their eyes on one another. Soon the whole party came on out for group photos, the excitement welling up in Tina’s face for what was soon to come. Even the parent’s got in on it, too, which makes for some really special photos.

Held in a little field with a pond flanking the altar and the vast expanse of land behind it, the ceremony was a sight to behold with the wooden gazebo covered with purple drapes and flowers, and magenta dresses and ties popping right out of the video. Once the deal was sealed, Tina and Maxence’s smiles burst across their faces as they raised their hands in triumph to walk back down the aisle.

After the documents were signed, the drinks started to flow with an open bar before everyone retreated inside for the reception. The space inside is perfect for a large amount of people with plenty of tables and chairs for those who don’t feel like dancing and those who’ve danced a little too much. Along with a photo booth for some silly group photos, tons of food and drinks, and a DJ who knew how to get everyone dancing together, the night was just a sheer blast.

Tina and Max, following the ceremony, found themselves walking down a dirty road for some private photos of just the two. As they dipped and kissed, the excitement and joy was almost palpable. At the end of the night, as they were heading off to start their new adventure together, they were sent off by their guests holding dozens of sparklers. It was a marvelous sight, and an even more beautiful way to end the night!

Thanks again to Tina and Maxence for choosing Best Made Videos to film your wedding. Let us know below what you thought! Comments and suggestions are always welcome.

– Scott Johnson

Photography – Tasha Owen

Venue – Lord Hill Farms

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Berry – Reich Wedding on 8/10/17 at Kitsap Memorial State Park

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We LOVE it!!! Thank you so much!!

Though it might be require a bit of traveling–if you’re coming from Seattle it means a ferry–Kitsap Memorial State Park is one of Washington’s many, many breathtaking parts and a constant reminder of the sheer natural beauty that the state has to offer. Located on Hood Canal, the 58-acre park just a short drive north of Poulsbo is the perfect destination for your wedding with almost 2,000 feet of shoreline. Even the Parks Department knows how beautiful and romantic it is for a wedding, with the opening description on their site reading, “Lovebirds, take heed!”

Bride and groom Kaylee and Conor thought this would be the perfect place for their wedding, and there’s really no questioning their decision especially when the weather behaved admirably–hardly a cloud in sight! Their day began as any would expect: the girls got ready, sipped champagne, did their hair, and bustled around with the urgency that the day required.

The boys…well…they played Mario Kart. Which to some might seem silly, but to others it is the perfect way to take the edge off of what is surely a high-stress day. But soon they got ready!

Conor struggled with his shoelaces quite a bit (remember this from our Favorite Wedding Video Surprises?) but he eventually got to be presentable for his bride who donned an open-back A-line gown. The adorable first look came next with their pearly whites shining with happiness. With the light creeping in through the trees, the photos and video we got were extraordinary, especially when everyone else got in on the fun and had a grand old time goofing around and making each other smile.

In a clearing in the woods, filled with dozens of white chairs, the bride and groom stood before their friends and family and tied the knot in a serene ceremony. With the officiant declaring them man and wife, she adds with a cute little whisper, “you can kiss,” before the two throw themselves at each other in a passionate embrace.

While the bride and groom took care of all of the official business, guests entertained themselves with bean bag toss, Giant Jenga, and barrels full of beverages! Cake cutting, dancing under twinkling lights in a gigantic wood cabin, and food came next. Be on the lookout for an adorable little boy strutting his best moves before he’s overtaken by the adults in the room when they started to really get into the party, even lifting up the groom in an almost unsafe fashion.

As the evening progressed, we headed outside with the newlyweds as they posed for more shots on the waterline. The sun was slowly creeping behind the hills in the distance, the perfect way to close out a day that couldn’t have gone any better. Thanks again to Conor and Kaylee for choosing Best Made Videos for their wedding ceremony. We hope your six-month anniversary goes swimmingly!

Did you like the video? Want to see something different than what we’re doing? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll be sure to get back to you!

– Scott Johnson

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Vera Wedding on 8/4/17 at Russell’s Loft in Bothell, Wa

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“We found Reid (Best Made Videos) on Yelp. He was awesome to have as our videographer and worked well with all of our other vendors (photographer, DJ, officiant). My favorite thing about Best Made Videos are the upgrades they offer (we didn’t opt for any), but it’s nice to know you could have a drone or 4K video upgrade.”

Frequent visitors to our website will surely recognize the Vera Wedding from our Favorite Vows series. The wedding of Mathew and Alex is truly one of our most unforgettable, mostly because of the vows the two share for each other as they recount their legendary story of love, conflict, and acceptance, but also because there’s little uncertainty to the love they have for one another as you will witness in the video.

The two grooms started their days getting ready together—with a little help from YouTube in the art of bow-tying, because that is no easy feat—at a Hilton, sipping bubbly and preparing for one of the biggest days they will ever share. Foregoing a traditional wedding party and best mans, the two simply stood at the altar with the officiant by themselves—and they also got ready together, which is often considered “unlucky,” but that had no implications on a day that went almost like a fairy tale. And then, with pressed tuxes, a little liquid courage, and a whole lot of love, Alex and Mathew met to be wed at Russell’s Loft by the legendary Ray Van Winkle.

As mentioned before, their storied vows show an epic saga of ups and downs, doubt and realization and ultimately the proposal that led to this moment. As Alex starts, he dives into the past and the first time they met. He doubted he’d ever meet anyone that felt the same way about him as he did about them, but they were like “two lesbians in love, moving fast.” Cue the chuckles followed by an emotional beat where Alex describes how safe and comfortable and at ease he felt to be with Mathew. He ends his vows with a declaration of his love.

Mathew responds with personal accounts of his own accepting of his sexuality. He always wondered “why me, why did I deserve this,” and doubted that he would ever reach this moment—standing with the person of his dreams, about to get married—but here he was, about to do just that. Vows like this hit us right in the feels, and surely you as well, because they are so true and full of love and emotion. Without further ado, the two lunged in for a passionate kiss to finally seal the deal.

Sneaking away for a gorgeous photoshoot around the estate, the two lovebirds looked like kids as they couldn’t keep their hands off one another, snapping photos with the sun setting off in the distance. These two are both the best of friends and the kindest of lovers, which is a pretty swell combination if you ask us.

As the night turned to dancing and partying, capping off with a glow-stick tunnel of love with everyone they love, the air was alive with music and wonder—the end to a perfect day. We want to thank Mathew and Alex for letting us video their ceremony and wish them nothing but the best!

– Scott Johnson

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Davis Elopement on 8/6/17 in the Quinault Rainforest

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“Reid was a pleasure to work with during the entire process; he was friendly, prompt, and thorough. We are unbelievably grateful for all of the amazing footage he captured. We were also amazed by how quickly he was able to put together such a beautiful video. I would definitely recommend Best Made Videos”

There’s something about the Pacific Northwest that calls out to the nature lovers, even those who prefer Birkenstocks and wool socks to hiking boots. From its expansive wildlife–bears, wolves, salmon, orca whales, and relentless squirrel population–to its near-constant rainfall, and all of the waterfalls, mountains and forests you could ever imagine, it’s no surprise that outdoor megastore REI was founded in the city almost a century ago.

But it’s also no surprise, as least when it comes to weddings, that the foreboding dreariness and dampness of the region sends couples indoors or undercover in order to tie the knot. Though the summer does indeed offer far more sun than the rest of the year, these days are always going to be a gamble, especially when it can transition from rain storms to clear skies in the matter of minutes and then back again another half dozen times throughout the day. When we say that Seattle weather is bipolar, we absolutely mean it.

Today’s video isn’t your typical wedding at a typical venue with the typical accoutrements–this is far and away the most simple yet elegantly assembled elopements we’ve ever had the honor of filming. On a misty day in August, Ashleigh and Malick trekked their way into towering Quinault Rainforest (famous for its “Valley of the Giants,” which boasts six of the largest trees in the country and world) to elope.There were no guests, no altar, no nothing–it was almost as barebones it could’ve been aside from an utterly adorable first look and officiant of the ceremony.

It’s becoming increasingly popular, especially amongst younger couples who don’t want all the pomp and circumstance, to simply elope. There’s significantly less planning (still even less than our Surprise Wedding videos), it’s deeply personal, and it saves on tons of money. Due to their increasing popularity, we’re proud to offer a special package for elopements–prices start at just $1000 and include two videographers and edited highlights and your ceremony video.

Malik, who in his vows reveals his deep, undying love for Ashleigh, opens his heart to her as he describes how she came into his life and “wrote her name on every page.” A year earlier he had left for boot camp, but they met on this day deep in the woods to establish their bond for life. Amongst the giant trees and the creeping mist, they tied the knot and walked off into the future together, even if he might have to be apart to serve his country.

All in all, Malik and Ashleigh’s went off without a hitch. While it may not appeal to everyone, elopements are often a better choice for people who either don’t have the money or simply don’t want an extravagant event. Nevertheless, there’s no way to deny that these two have something special going on. Thanks again to Ashleigh and Malik for choosing Best Made Videos to film their ceremony, we wish you all the best!

Did you elope? Have a super private ceremony? How did that go for you? Let us know below!

– Scott Johnson



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Fotopoulos Wedding on 7/22/17 at St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church in Seattle, Wa

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Something we always like to mention is the massive amount of diverse, creative and meaningful weddings that our clients want us to film. For every massive family celebration that gathers everyone and their cousin under one roof there is a juxtaposing ceremony that is quiet and small, and for every gorgeous sunny day outside in the country there is an equally rainy and cold day spent inside. But the one thing we love the most is seeing other cultures celebrating in their traditional manner because it transcends the love of the bride and groom and represents their entire being.

The Fotopoulos wedding is just one of many examples of a traditional, cultural and religious wedding for Greeks. You may have seen this wedding before—it was referenced in our Favorite Venues article because the St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church is a beauty—but it’s one of our favorites for many reasons other than the stunning church!

The day began a search—a search for toothpaste. It’s funny how of all trivial things you might be lacking on such a big day in your life that brushing your teeth would seem like one you’d have in the bag. But with fresh teeth—made even fresher with a swig from a flask—the smiles shone bright as the bride and groom met at the church for their swooning first look outside the church where groom Yanni teased us—anything to keep him smiling—until his bride tapped him on the shoulder.

As the entourage of bridesmaids and groomsmen slowly amassed in front of the church, one would think it’s the entire guest list with how many of them there are! But alas, there awaited more guests inside for the wedding itself! Even more beautiful than the weather that day—but perhaps not as much as the bride—is the church itself with its depictions of the stations of the cross, stained glass windows and the drooping chandeliers that add light to an already breathtaking venue.

With an entire army alongside the bride and groom, the two tied the knot and sealed it with a kiss as what felt like a thunder of applause greeted them from the audience. The official signing, taking place with a prayer inside the priest’s office, legitimized the ceremony. Arriving to dimmed lights and all of their family and friends, the bride and groom strolled into the ballroom for their first dance.

Our favorite part of the reception was the traditional greek dancing with everyone going around in a circle. You’ve surely seen this somewhere before, but being there to experience it firsthand is a wild ride. With a private photo booth and photographer, guests could snap the night away with cherished memories they could carry forever.

Yanni and Chelsea’s wedding day was such an honor to film! We hope the New Year is treating you well! Have a favorite moment from the video? Want us to write about something specific? We’d love to hear from you, so drop us a line below!

– Scott Johnson

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Chan – Hayashi Wedding on 7/29/17 at The Seattle Tennis Club in Seattle, Wa

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“I feel so incredibly lucky that I was able to book Best Made Videos for my wedding! They are the total package – super easy to work with (I’ve never met anyone who responds as quickly), totally professional (I’m pretty camera shy but they made me feel so comfortable and I completely forgot they were even there), fast (they turned around our videos before we even returned from the honeymoon), talented (they captured every important moment perfectly), and provide the best value (other companies charge an arm and a leg and I can’t believe how much we get for the prices they charge). I cannot thank Reid, Joe, and the team enough! Thank you for capturing our day so perfectly and ensuring we get to enjoy it all for years to come.”

On a sweltering, sun-soaked July day just begging you to go to the beach (visitors to the city will still be devastatingly chilled by the crisp waters even during the summer) the Chan-Hayashi Wedding got kicked off early in the day by the waters of Lake Washington at the Seattle Tennis Club. The magnificent estate can play host to just about everyone you could think of, and they provide full catering too!

Getting ready for their big day, Rebecca’s side had to perform surgery to untangle her necklace, which had somehow jumbled up like a pair of earbuds left in your pocket for too long, resulting in a big cheer. With flowers in her hair, a strapless dress and a long train, Rebecca stunned everyone, especially Justin when they met for their first look out on the docks. As the water lapped up on shore and the sun beamed down on them, it was truly a special time for the two. Shortly after, the entire bridal party lined up on the dock for a group photo.

Continuing around the estate, the party went along with all the silly poses and formations we had for them, and at one point even lifting Rebecca and Justin up individually. The poses continued for some time with everyone trying to stifle their contagious laughter. It was a great looking group with the men in their suave light-grey suits and the bridesmaids in periwinkle dresses.

The ceremony, held under a tented event space and overlooking the water, was touching on all accounts, especially the vows spoken by the bride and groom. The officiant also delivered some special lines that dug right into the heart strings. Following the big kiss that sealed the deal, the newly weds retreated for a tea ceremony with their parents and some more private photos with their merged families.

Heading on inside to the ballroom, the bride and groom arrived to cut the cake and perform their first dance—with elegant dip and all—before the rest of the guests joined in on the fun. Once the chandeliers dimmed and the party lights went on, the whole room was on their feet, dancing and partying the hot summer night away. At one point, someone even had a tie wrapped around their head. Now that’s a party!

When the day drew to an end, Rebecca and Justin headed back out to the shores for one last photo shoot as they stood on the shore, staring off into the distance at Mt. Rainier, these two were preparing to embark on the great journey of life together with the pinks and blues of the sky intermingling—one of the most beautiful sights you can witness on a summer night in Seattle.

Thanks again to Rebecca and Justin for choosing Best Made Videos to film your wedding! We hope that you had a wonderful six-month anniversary!

Did you enjoy the video? Let us know in the comments below! We are always taking suggestions and recommendations for what to write about, so don’t be shy!

– Scott Johnson

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Anderson Wedding on 7/21/17 at Swans Trail Farms in Snohomish, Wa

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“I’ve watched the highlights video like 10 times, it makes me laugh each time I watch it. There are some pretty hilarious moments that just crack me up! Zach loved it too!”

In a city like Seattle, you’ll find countless locations to get married. Towering sky-rises, little churches tucked between massive buildings, historical structures that tell a story and brand new marvels of architecture are just some of the many venues you’ll find—but that’s just the city. Head off in any direction from Seattle (though west will eventually put you out in the middle of the ocean) and you’ll find vineyards, farms, quaint towns and some of the most serene landscapes you’re likely to ever find.

On a sunny day in July, the Andersons tied the knot at the idyllic Swans Trail Farm (which is already a pretty hopping place come Autumn with their massive pumpkin patch) located just a short drive north of the city. All the way up in Snohomish, and right by some delectable vineyards, the region is a far cry from what city-life has to offer—and that’s exactly why we love heading out into the country.

A picture-perfect day started out just so as everyone got ready at Adam’s Manor, a gorgeous estate just down the road in Snohomish. One of our favorite wedding dress shots from this last year was the shot of Tracy’s dress on the front of the amazing house. The ornate details of Adam’s Manor also lead to some great shots of Tracy’s shoes and other wedding day details.

Adorned in peach-colored dresses, the bridesmaids assisted the lovely Tracy with her stunning dress as laughs were had as they forgot we were even there! As the clouds rolled in, photos were taken around the venue with the bridal party looking radiant amongst the rustic locale.

Groom Zachary finally joins the picture with everything mostly in order—there is that funny mishap with the groomsmen “forgetting” his pants, which you can find out more about here—and soon (with a pair of stand-in jeans) the men align for some epic photos out in the fields amongst a beached boat. We would be lying if we told you that we didn’t continue to tease our clients about the funny occurrences, but we do need to get our clients smiling somehow! Thankfully, all that besmirched the day was near wardrobe crisis, but we hardly consider that a loss at all.

The ceremony to follow was a touching display of the bride and groom’s love for each other, with both sides of the family intermingling with each other as “no sides” were taken in the seating. This fun trend keeps popping up wherever we go, and we absolutely love it. The forgotten pants were still remembered after the wedding as the post-wedding photoshoot featured some low-hanging apparel to tease the absent-minded groomsmen.

With the rest of the day turning to overcast, the glistening lights strung over the dance floor lit up for everyone to party the night away. As the day slowly came to an end, the sky darkened to a deep purple and the guests danced until they couldn’t dance no more. As always, we want to wish nothing but happiness and love for the married couple and thank you for picking Best Made Videos to shoot your wedding day. What was your favorite part of the wedding? Let us know in the comments below!

– Scott Johnson

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by Scott Johnson

Most of us don’t want to admit it, but we can all be lazy when it comes to planning things. So when something like a wedding needs to be planned–often with an absurdly daunting list of a hundred different things that need to be ordered and organized–it’s not a surprise that a lot of people shut down and hire a wedding planner in order to take on the weight of planning a decadent affair.

Of course, there’s also the option of not planning much at all. You could just boogie on down to the courthouse and get married like Richard and Stacey.

These two proved you can still have a ton of fun getting married and taking pictures around downtown Seattle with just a small bridal party in tow and the sense of carefree joy you get when you do something on a whim, rather than wait months and months for an event to happen.

The other option, as movies like What If and shows like Parks and Recreation have inspired a number of people in recent years, is throwing a surprise wedding. Take Ashleigh Banfield (CNN host) for example who, upon not wanting to get bogged down in “a million details,” threw a surprise wedding for all those in attendance at what they presumed would be her 50th birthday party.

So, essentially, the couple just had to plan for a birthday party and that was pretty much it! Check out the article from People to learn more about their day!

We don’t get too many offers to shoot surprise weddings—mostly because we’re often booked months in advance and the idea of a surprise wedding is pretty much the exact opposite of that—but we have indeed had two that were truly special events full of love and excitement. Also, they just so happened to take place at the same venue. Weird. But that’s just the way we like it! Let’s find out more about them, shall we?


Alford Wedding

One of our most emotional weddings, the Alford’s was a truly spectacular day. About a month in the works, the surprise wedding was staged as your typical Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone is dressed up, ready to eat some good food, excited to see family and friends—but they’re in for just a little bit more than that!

What makes this day so special is the love these two have for each other and the sheer impact their children have in their decision. Feeling like it was a “good idea” but still “non-traditional,” the couple very quickly established the plans within a month—which by our standards is pretty darn impressive. The wedding, to be held at the place they had their first kiss, is amazingly touching.

Raising a kid on her own, it was always Desiree’s hope that Hartley would find a father figure. “I cared more about her having a father figure more than a mate for myself.” It seemed like she found the best of both worlds with Ron!

Even more special, Ron didn’t know his father which makes his connection with Hartley almost kismet. The bond these two have with their respective kids is something else, but merging the two amazing families is one of those things you only see in movies—until now.

Part of the planning also had to involve including his son who was recently diagnosed with Leukemia, which had shaken things up a bit, but the ability to have everyone be there is what makes it even more fantastic for these two.

The day went off without a hitch, as everyone was welcomed to the wedding right away—with many doubting Ron’s words! As soon as they all saw the chairs and the officiant, it all became clear—this wasn’t just Thanksgiving dinner.

Cofield Wedding

One of the most thrilling aspects of a surprise wedding is that it feels almost like you’re pulling off a big heist. Only a few select people are in on the operation—lest certain family members feel betrayed—in order to make it run smoothly. It is done under utmost secrecy, because then that destroys the whole “surprise” aspect of it. But most importantly, the rewards are key—the excitement and shock on everyone’s face is utterly priceless.

So the Cofield wedding kicked off as a “engagement dinner,” planned for about two months. They both wanted small weddings, Mallory was lacking the “wedding gene,” and simply didn’t want to have all the bells and whistles—but they still wanted to make it special. Only close family and friends were invited, essentially the “wedding party,” as well as his boss who happens to be a preacher.

Once everyone was sat down in Mama Stortini’s, Mike got up on stage with his preacher boss and asked her directly, in front of everyone, if she wanted to officiate their wedding. Being in on the plan, she responds with, “well I’m honored. I don’t even know what to say, but why not just do it now? You have all your family and friends here.” Then it clicked with everyone. The tears, applause and cheers were everything you expect them to be. Everyone got duped! But at least it was the good kind!

Earlier this year, the Cofield’s surprise wedding was actually featured on Offbeat Bride! The article, written by Catherine Clark, discusses the diverse background of the parents of both of the bride and groom. After a more-or-less “traditional” ceremony, the two changed garbs to perform the traditional Korean Pyebaek bowing ceremony, in honor of Mike’s heritage, who is also African-American while the bride is Chinese, Greek, Italian and German!

Surprise weddings can be a lot of fun if pulled off correctly, though for some it might upset some of the more traditional family members. There’s not much more that can be the look on everyone’s face, however, so just that alone might be enough to convince you to throw your own!


Did you have a surprise wedding? Ever been to one and have pics and videos to share? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll be sure to feature you!

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