Making of Dior Gowns

Have you seen?! I love that Dior is doing this! It’s fascinating and it gives a great insight into why designer gowns are so incredibly pricey. A lot of people and painstaking hard work goes into each one of these gowns.

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Z+K Reception

My reception turned out to be everything I dreamed it would be and I think that’s one of the happiest things a bride can say. I wanted a crisp, clean, chic, classic, white wedding and it all fell into place beautifully. I may have had the vision but it took my entire family to make it all come true. I went thrifting for days (a drudgery I had to endure) to find vases, picture frames, and little trinkets to spray paint white and gold, which were my main colors, with accents of black and soft pinks. My sister Charlotte was at the forefront of the reception planning and even gave me the tip off about my venue, Southworth Hall. It’s a modest little hole in the wall from the outside, but the inside has so much potential for glamour! It’s very illusive, I’m afraid I don’t even have a website to direct you to; they don’t have pictures or real information up yet. My three favorite things about it: 1-Brick walls. Love them. 2- It was smaller and a little more cozy. It also meant that we could fill space fast, which I appreciated. 3- It is in downtown Provo. I love Provo. It brings back wonderful memories of my childhood and I think downtown especially has a particular charm I haven’t found anywhere else in the country. Zach and I spent the first half of our dating life in Provo, we went for numerous walks downtown together. It was a sentimental location for me. I also loved that all of my wedding festivities took place in Provo. It’s a quirk of mine but I like to keep things together, like a collection. My wedding and all the celebrations that went with it are part of my Provo collection.

Peter Tidwell, my brother-in-law, also known as The Mighty Baker, was my caterer for the evening. I requested homemade oreos, sugar cookies, pretty cupcakes sprinkles with gold dust, and mini cheesecakes. And let’s not forget my beautiful white cake!! Did Pete deliver or what!? I was very pleased with the delicacies we served and I loved that we got to offer our delicious wedding cake as well. My sister Allysann was so thoughtful; she made two plates full of our refreshments and stored them away for Zach and me to take home with us. I got to sample all the goodness! I know most brides and grooms never get to eat their own food so I’m grateful she thought of us. Peter is a baking wizard and if you or anyone else needs a caterer for a wedding, he’s my #1 recommendation.

Because Peter is a caterer, and therefore has a wholesale license to floral shops, my sisters and I were able to pick out the flowers together and arrange them ourselves! I really enjoyed that part. We did the same for Allysann when she got married (13 months before me) and I was looking forward to arranging my own blooms for my reception. They may look homemade but I like their appearance all the better for that. The effect turned out dainty and sweet.

Just like all wedding receptions, the morning and afternoon of the event was spent running last minute errands and taking care of the little things. I’m so grateful for my family who all took their assigned responsibilities seriously and made sure nothing fell through the cracks. Sharon got me ready for the last time, Charlotte and Peter took care of food, Lynn, Allysann, Bryan, Danielle, and Zach all set up. They pulled out the chairs and tables, covered them, strung lights, set out pictures and flower arrangements, and made sure the music and lights were just right. This was my family’s fourth wedding. We’re getting pretty good at it.

All Photos by Heather Nan Parkinson

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At 5:00 PM our guests arrived and the party started! Zach and I didn’t want to spend our whole evening standing in a line so we wandered around together and talked and laughed with all our people. Things were ideal, I couldn’t have asked for a smoother reception. I’m thankful to all who came to support the new Heckert family. Zach and I loved seeing our friends and family! We had to wrap up the merriment at 7:00 PM sharp because there was another event taking place at Southworth Hall that evening. Our remaining guests all ran outside and gave us a wonderful send off. I love those pictures. I obviously posted too many but how could I choose!? You get to see it in sequence. Maybe if I print all of them off and staple them together you can watch us leave like an animated flipbook?

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Zach’s sister,Emma, and her husband, Steve, were outside doing a little wedding damage to Zach’s car while all the festivities were going on. They filled the car completely with balloons! It was a very cheerful mess!kaitlin_zach_reception_0860

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Pre Reception Romancing And Family Formals

I know the pictures are getting out of hand and it probably looks a great deal like I need to get over myself, but our incredible photographer requested two extra hours before our reception to take some more photos of us. I think she wanted them for her own use but she was generous enough to hand them over to Zag and me as well! I hope we helped Heather get the shots she was looking for. I don’t know how she feels about these but I love them! It was so gracious of her to give us two extra hours behind the camera for free. We wandered and crossed the streets of downtown Provo, several cars honked and hollered, and we even had an encounter with a homeless man. Side note- I love it when Zach interacts with bums, he’s always so sweet and patient with their drunken rants. Yes, we’ve had several experiences and it always melts my heart. Am I being politically incorrect here? Moving on…

The wind was as wild as it was on our wedding day so my veil was everywhere. That’s alright; I think it made for a couple fun pictures, even if it was a fat nuisance at the time. One of my favorite things about this photo shoot was the fact that Heather got some great ones of Zach. I feel like so often weddings are all about the bride and I really wanted this to be our wedding, not mine. Zach might “humph” at that, I’ll admit I shot down a few of his ideas, but take a look at his blog and tell me, what kind of a wedding would we have had!? He’s an incredible artist, I don’t know about wedding planner. But Heather took some fantastic shots with the groom’s face, she allowed him to show a lot of expression and personality. My favorites are the ones where I’m looking at him worshipfully. How embarrassing to discover my face has carried such a gooey, adoring expression for the last year and a half.

All Photos by Heather Nan Parkinson

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An hour before the reception started we took family photos and I couldn’t have been more pleased with the results. We’re related to such good-looking people! The pictures with our nieces turned out especially sweet. One of my top favorites is the one of Zach with Georgia on his lap. Too precious. Heather really was an ideal photographer. She thought of it all and captured tender moments as well. We love her.

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Ring Ceremony and Dinner

After taking pictures outside the temple our families and friends left for the Sky Room on BYU campus, where Zach and I held our ring ceremony and dinner the evening of our wedding. Zach and I decided on holding a reception the week after our honeymoon, hoping it would make things much less stressful for everyone involved. I anticipated a breezy wedding day; get married in the late afternoon and then head straight for a dinner and program. Zach’s mother, Julie, was entirely responsible for this event and she did a terrific job. It was beautiful and personal which was exactly what we wanted.

After taking pictures around the temple in a rain storm, Zach and I drove to the Sky Room to meet all our guests for the ring ceremony. My brother-in-law, Dan, officiated the ceremony, which means he poked fun at us the entire time. Most of his content had to do with how our personality differences and strengths support and complement each other. He was fun and sweet and made everyone giggle.  Then, at the request of the audience, Zach took the microphone to give a few words and started out tender but I snatched the mic to clarify when he began to thank various people in the crowd for making sure he never broke up with me. Zach and I are very happy and very in love but we had a few bumps in the road while we were dating. Both of us were initially terrified of marriage and the life change it requires. Our anxieties always seemed to be on opposite schedules; if he was scared and nervous, I felt calm and peaceful about it. But as soon as he began to feel good about moving forward, the fears settled in for me. We had hundreds of good times in between all of this, obviously, we were growing to love each other more every day, but somehow that didn’t make the plunge any easier. In fact, because Zach and I knew we were going to end up together from the very first date, it almost made it harder. We were fighting the inevitable. Choosing one person to belong to for the rest of your life and eternity is a big, sometimes scary deal. We both had to put so much work into making sure it was right. It took us 13 months from start to finish and I’m very glad we took our time. Zach was trying to express gratitude to our friends for helping us work through our fears and anxieties, but it might have sounded a little unromantic if you didn’t know the whole story. He made it up to me in front of all our guests with kisses and nuzzles. Silly Zaglette.

After the ring ceremony we all took our seats for dinner. I had asked for a few of our siblings and friends to say a little something. My sister Danielle was the emcee. You can always count on Danielle to entertain, she’s a natural! We had Zach’s sister, Emma, my sisters Danielle and Allysann, one of my best friends, Jordan Metcalf, and two of his best friends, Ryan Metcalf and Ryan Richey, give toasts. Their words were so sweet and full of love and sincerity. Lots of tears from us all. After the toasts we watched a slide show my sister Sharon made for us. This was one of my favorite parts of the night. Zach sat at our table, I stood behind him with my arm around his shoulder, in my other arm I held my 3 year old niece, Georgia.  We watched the slide show together and by the last song I realized Zach was crying. It melted my heart completely. Our wedding day was the first time I had ever seen him cry and my heart felt like it was going to burst with love for everyone in the room who played a part in our story growing up, but especially for my new husband of… 3 hours. Your wedding day is heavy with emotion, you guys! I don’t even know if there will be another day in my life where I’m so overwhelmed with feelings! I kissed his cute, wet face and then we cut our cake (made by my totally talented brother-in-law, Peter, the Mighty Baker) and served it to everyone.

Our time was running out, we only had the Sky Room until 7:00 PM (which was perfect!) so I ran to the bathroom and my sister, Allysann, helped me change. It was there that I realized for the first time the entire evening that my hair looked like I survived a hurricane. HA! I was shocked! No one told me I looked so ratty and ridiculous! Ah well, these pictures make me laugh now. It’s all part of my wedding day memories! And I have much more pretty and pleasing pictures to come with my next post 😉

All Photos by Heather Nan Parkinson

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

 

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Wedding Day Remembrances

Siiiiiigh, my wedding day. It poured rain, the weather was frigid, and my hair was disastrous by the end of it all, but… it was a pretty spectacular day. In fact, I think all those things added to the charm of our event. The whole thing was so dreamlike. I mean that quite literally. The morning of November 22nd I woke up and thought “Is this really it? Am I seriously getting married today? The day I’ve been thinking of and expecting and looking forward to my entire life?! Naaaaaaah, it feels like any old average morning.” I got out of bed, said a morning prayer, read some scriptures, and brushed my teeth. Yup. Just like every day. I packed all my last minute morsels into my suitcase for my honeymoon, tried to remember everything I would need that day (wedding dress, veil, shoes, makeup, purse with all my important things, Zach’s wedding ring…etc. Sheesh.) and headed to Provo to my sister Charlotte’s house. My sister Sharon was staying at Charlotte’s and she was going to do my hair and makeup for the day. When I got there all my sisters cheered (they had slept at Charlotte’s) and I shook my fists in victory above my head even though, still, none of it felt real. I sat down on a chair, my brother-in-law, Dan, grabbed a mirror from off the wall and set it up for us and Sharon got to work at the kitchen table. You know, I really do enjoy having my makeup done by someone else who I trust. It’s such a treat.

I chose to have our wedding ceremony at 1:30 PM because I thought that would make it nice and easy on everyone. It meant we all got to sleep in and have a calm, relaxed morning getting ready. The thing is, Zach is a morning person (to the extreme) and had been up since 5:30 AM. He packed for our honeymoon, took a shower, shaved, got a manly manicure from his sister, Emma, changed into his wedding suit, and was lazily reading a book. Clearly it felt like just any old day for him, too. I got a few texts from him throughout the morning and finally he called me around 11:00AM. He whined that he was bored, that no one at home was paying attention to him (ha!), and asked if he could come over and be with me while I got ready. I know tradition says it’s wrong for the groom to see the bride before the ceremony but he was going to come get me so we could go to the temple together anyway, right? Might as well come over if you’re bored to tears, I say.

He came over and brought his journal with him. I was thrilled that he would write in his journal the day of our wedding!! Turns out he only wrote a sentence or two. Something like “I get married today.” Nice. As Sharon was working on me I couldn’t help but look outside the kitchen window and notice how harsh the wind was blowing and how dark the clouds loomed, I knew that a heavy rain shower was on its way. It made me a little nervous, I was hoping for a gorgeous snow fall, if weather had to happen, not hard, cold rain. Ah well. Once Sharon was finished with me, Zach and I grabbed our things, packed it all in the car good and tight (in the beginnings of the rain storm), and headed to the Provo Temple.

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It only took us about 5-10 minutes to get there but that’s all the time mother nature needed. By the time we arrived it was pouring. Zach tried to pull the car up as close to the front door of the temple as possible without running over the flower beds. Surprisingly, his mother was there to greet me with an umbrella. She and Zach’s family came very early because they were scared to be late due to the weather. Zach let me out and then drove off to park the car. Was this even real? I mean, was I really at the temple to get married!? I waited for Zach and then he and I took care of all the temple business we needed to, including handing over our marriage license to be signed after it was all over. Wow. That’s when it started to sink in and I began to feel jittery. Oh man. This is real. I’m about to become Zachary’s wife. AH! Me? A wife!? So crazy! Didn’t I know I was going to marry Zach from the moment he took me home on our first date? Did I not expect this the whole 5 months we were engaged?? What did I think an engagement was, anyway? I loved (still do) Zach! He’s my man! I know, I know, it sounds crazy, but it was then that the adrenaline kicked in and the reality of it all hit me hard. I squeezed his hand (probably too tightly) goodbye as we had to go separate ways to change for the ceremony. Once we got back together they gave us some time to be alone before our guests arrived. It was a special moment I hope I never forget. Zach reminded me how much he loves me. I love him so much. It was all going to be okay. So much better than okay! We were going to live a very happy life together, not without hard times, but we would push through those together and grow closer for it. We held each other and I wished I could feel what he was feeling because A) I was curious to know exactly what was going on in his mind, and B) he appeared calm as a cucumber about it all, I wished he could give me some of that. But that’s exactly what he was trying to do. He’s such a good Zaglentine for me. Finally they told us everyone was situated and the two of us walked into the room. Oh dear. I’m afraid I lost it there. All my pretty makeup Sharon had done for me ran down my face as I looked at my most favorite people in the world and felt such a wonderful feeling of support and love. I had Zach’s hand in mine and I realized not for the first time how extremely blessed I am to know and be so intimately acquainted with all of those incredible people. And most importantly, I had Zach. We were doing this enormously life changing and eternally crucial thing together.

Zach and I were told by many people afterward that both of our little feetsies were bouncing up and down nervously throughout the entire ceremony. We gave hugs and thanked everyone who came to be with us on our day. We were lucky enough to have another special moment after everyone left to be completely alone, to hold each other, and bawl our eyes out. We did it! After everything we had been through, we finally did it. We were sealed together forever; he was my husband, I was his wife. Pretty powerful.

All of our people were waiting outside for us when we came out of the temple doors and then it was time for pictures!! Yipeeeeee! Let me tell you, as nervous and apprehensive as I felt before we were married, I felt equally as giddy and joyful afterwards. All the hard parts were over. I love Zach an incredible amount and I’m looking forward to the many many years we have ahead of us. And that’s where I’ll leave off on this story. “Wait, there’s more!?” Yes. If you know me at all you know I can’t tell a story short. There are a few more events and a few more feelings to share!

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

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Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

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Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

Provo LDS Temple Wedding - Utah Wedding Photographer

P.S. Zach and I fell in love with our wedding day photographer, Heather nan Parkinson. We met her for the first time outside of the temple and it took her all of two seconds to win our hearts. I was familiar with her work, of course, and knew that I would be the luckiest lady bride ever to have her shoot our wedding. I was right. I’m crazy about these photos and especially of the ones yet to be posted on this blog. She’s incredible! Heather is the perfect combination of kindness and sarcasm, it’s exactly what I look for when hoping to find a best friend. She was so fun, efficient, took charge when she needed to, and gave us incredible photos. She also recently had her work printed in the Utah Bride & Groom Magazine. Go look and be dazzled. She won our allegiance.

Wedding Dress Fancies

A few years ago, I think I was in my second to last year in design school, my class took a field trip to the De Young Museum in San Francisco where there was an exhibit held for the ever brilliant designer, Balenciaga. I knew his name and was familiar with a couple of his pieces, but once we walked through the doors and I saw display after display of his work, I literally felt a warm sensation in my heart, like it was melting. Balenciaga was in the prime of his career in the 1950s and 1960s, he trained under Christian Dior. His aesthetic spoke to me in a way only black and white movies and vintage vogue magazines can. As I walked through and stopped to examine all his gorgeous work, there was a dress in particular that caught my eye. I stared at it for far too long and took note of the name of the gown and the year he created it so I could go home and google more about it. Ah! It was incredible! I found the original photo shoot taken with that dress and saved the picture to use as inspiration, whenever the time may come.

As Zach and I began to talk seriously of marriage, I knew I planned to make my own wedding dress, but how could I ever choose which style to go with!? There are way too many gorgeous silhouettes and eras to choose from! Should I try something sleek and drapey like a 30s bombshell? Did I want simple lines or ruffles and frills? Should I go for lace, satin, chiffon, tulle…!?  This is why I so desperately need to become a bridal designer. There are too many ideas and designs in my head and I need an outlet. But my own wedding day; that was a huge commitment. How did I always want to be remembered? The option occurred to me to try a voluminous dress since I would never ever have another excuse to wear a giant gown. The more that thought rolled around in my head the more I began to convince myself I needed to wear a ballgown just once in my life. I’m not sure at what point in all these wedding dress musings I thought back to that Balenciaga gown, but I know that once I saw the image in my head, there was no going back. I had finally made up my mind and that was that. I wasn’t going to attempt to recreate it of course, but I was going to use it as inspiration to create my own design.

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Dreamy and gorgeous, right!?

People kept telling me I would go crazy if I tried to make my own wedding dress and I knew they were probably right, but… am I a designer or am I a designer!? I mean this with all humility, but I knew no one could craft my own design better than I could. Still, I could admit there was some truth to what everyone was saying. I was planning a wedding, working full time, trying to find a place for us to live as newly weds, and designing for Provo Fashion Week. What’s a girl to do? Because I was so pressed for time I thought I could save myself some grief and buy a dress online. That way I could completely take it apart and remake it rather than starting from scratch. At least that gave me a skeleton to work with. I found a tulle ankle length dress for $140 online and removed the bodice completely. I bought a hoop skirt on eBay because I figured if I was going to go big I might as well go all the way. Once I put the tulle skirt and hoop skirt on my dress form, Vivian, I realized the hoop was too wide for the skirt. I had to cut into the satin layer under the tulle and add 6”-7” inch wide panels to the front and the back in order for the skirt to lie nicely over the hoops.

The bodice was a little harder for me to make up my mind about. I already had the design of course, but what fabric to use!? It had to be gold, of that I was sure, but did I want an intricate gold beaded fabric? Gold lace? How about brocade? That’s what I landed on. I took a Saturday trip up to SLC with my mother to check out a darling little fabric shop called Tissu and the second I walked through the doors I found it. It was that easy! Do you understand how rare that is? I never seem to find the fabric my mind so desperately wants for its designs. The gold and cream floral brocade was perfect and only cost $40. I brought it home and immediately got to work. I made a quick pattern for a circle skirt I used for the peplum and pulled out a simple bodice pattern for the top. As I was cutting it out I decided I wanted to make it a wide V-neck so I did a little detour off the pattern to make my own neckline. I enjoyed the effect it made on my neck and shoulders, the fabric stood up just ½” off my body. Awesome. There were a couple of days full of tweaking and hemming and taking it in here and there, but I finished it completely at the end of September and was totally ready to wear it to the temple come November 22nd. That’s the story of how this little white and gold wedding dress came to be. And the blush length veil? It just seemed like the perfect 60s touch to polish off the look. I went to Icings and found a faux diamond hair comb that coordinated well with my ring and the whole ensemble and then found some slightly shimmery gold tulle at the fabric store and whipped out that veil in less than an hour. I really enjoyed making it, I think I should make a few more and sell them online, just for the fun of it.

And if you’re interested in the woman behind the camera for these photos (and you absolutely should be!), I’ll tell you the story of finding my photographer as well. I searched long and hard for a photographer who I felt had a very different, artistic eye for my wedding photos. It was among my very highest priorities in all the wedding planning. Right up there with the dress! I felt like I needed all my sweat and tears to come to life through the perspective of my photographer so that it could be preserved for my posterity. Sentimentalities and record keeping has always been a thing for me. One day in early July I was perusing pinterest and I typed in “Provo temple weddings” to see if I could be inspired by any other weddings done in the Provo temple. I came across some photos that were absolutely incredible!! I fell in love with them and especially the photographer. I went to her website and found even more exciting wedding photos to make my heart skip! I just had to have this woman photograph my wedding. She seemed to attract artful brides and I hoped against hope that she could make my wedding come to life the way I had it all imagined in my head. I reached out to her and she responded by telling me she was due to have a baby end of October but that she was willing to do a bridal session for me a month or two before the wedding. She also gave me a great list of photographer recommendations, and really, they all looked equally sumptuous. (I found our photographer for the rest of our wedding through her and Zach and I loved her as well!) I was bummed that she couldn’t do my wedding but absolutely willing to take what I could get from her. I set the appointment for her to take some formal pictures of Zach and me in Salt Lake City a month and a half before our wedding date. What she did with us was pure magic. I love these photos and I hope our children and their children’s children will too. I’m all about family photos! Go see Brooke Shultz’s website and blog here. It will make your heart sing.

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I’ll blog about the actual wedding day and the reception as soon as I get those photos back!

Designer Dreams

Do you ever get a bee in your bonnet and it won’t stop buzzing until you take that thought and put it into action?  A few years ago when I was still in design school I dreamed up a cream peplum pencil skirt (this is just before peplums were THE thing) and I couldn’t let it go. I thought about it for weeks until finally one Saturday afternoon when I was tired of wishing for it I sat down at my sewing machine and made it happen. That’s probably one of my favorite things about being a designer. I love to come up with a concept and then after days (and sometimes days and days and days) of hard work, you get to hold it in your hands. What started out in your head became and real, tangible garment! I wore this “dream made real” skirt a few times and then allowed it to get pushed back so far in my closet that I hardly ever thought of it again. I found it the other day and thought that it at least deserved a cameo on my blog. After all, it’s my own!

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Black Lace Top: eBay

Cream Peplum Skirt: Me

Gold Kitten Heels: eBay

Pearl Plated Necklace: Forever 21

Gold Clutch: Savers

Photography By Charlotte Tidwell

Just Call Me Ginger

There are two different names for this kind of dress; trapeze dress and tent dress. Trapeze dress is much more flattering so obviously that’s what I’m goin’ with. I bought this dress from Burlington Coat Factory just before I moved to San Francisco because I loved the pleated black chiffon. I wore it to a formal dinner and dance my church held every Christmas season and it ended up being the perfect dress for the occasion. I danced with my friend Clay that night and we both felt so upscale as we swirled around the dance floor! Every time he twirled me my dress would fly open all the way up to my waist (good thing the dress is lined) and then as he pulled me in it would coil back around my legs before settling again. Was I being Ginger Rogers!? I thought so. No wonder so many girls dream of becoming ballroom dancers, swaying with and manipulating fabric is a delectable hobby.

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Black Pleated Chiffon Trapeze Dress: BCF

Black with Cream Polka Dots Chiffon Button-Up: Deseret Industries- Logan Utah

Draped Pearl Necklace: Forever 21

Black High Heels: Head Over Heels

Photography By Charlotte Tidwell

Titillating Teal

There is such a deliciously embarrassing story behind this outfit. But first I have to tell you that one of my best friends, Carissa, sent me this dress for my 22nd birthday while I was living in San Francisco. She and her sister Stacy (another BFF) have always been amazing at remembering my birthday and sent delightful packages to me while I was away. They are such darlings. I fell in love with the vibrancy of this teal dress the moment I opened Carissa’s birthday package, and I quickly learned to appreciate how easy it was to accessorize and dress it up. This cutie little dress became a summer basic for me. My only complaint is that it cuts me off at the widest part of my ribcage (just under the bust. That’s why I hardly ever go for empire waist tops and dresses) and I’m not sure it creates the best silhouette for my body shape. But who cares!? It’s been a dream for me over the years. I have gotten a little small for it however, and because of that I have to take in extra from inside and safety pin it whenever I wear it. Still, I couldn’t let it go. I felt like it was light and breezy, flirty and fun.

 Okay, now I’ll get to the juice. Last June I started dating a guy who, by the way, was the guy I was telling Zach about when we had our first conversation last summer. I’ll call him Dave, just so we have a name for the story. Dave asked me out for a 3rd date and because I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about him I said yes. He picked me up in Orem and took me to dinner in Farmington (Can’t remember why it had to be Farmington?) and then afterwards we drove to the Salt Lake City Capitol building and put a blanket down on the lawn so we could play card games. It was a beautiful summer evening and the capitol was lit up magnificently. I remember being completely content except for the fear in the back of my mind that he was going to kiss me. I wasn’t ready for that.  He was coming on pretty strong with the hand holding and the caresses. I’ve never been the kind of girl that can date someone halfheartedly; I’m either in or out. I detest men who are wishy washy in relationships and I never wanted to be “that girl” either. But I tried to drive those thoughts out of my mind and focus on having fun. Dating is supposed to be FUN! I wanted to keep things lighthearted and easy. As we lay there on the blanket playing UNO, I had a moment where I got a little too excited because I was sure I was about to win. I leaned over fast, threw my card down, and shouted “UNO”!! That did it. In my hasty lunge forward the safety pin inside my dress popped and my dress dropped open. Ugh. Yes. It’s the hilarious/sad/sorry truth. I thought I could probably die on the spot and that would be just fine by me. Poor Dave, he definitely got a good look at what was behind my dress and he didn’t know what to say or do. I rushed to fix it but… it was kind of difficult. I was mortified but also found the humor in the situation. After the first few moments of embarrassment, I began to laugh. What the heck!? Why is life so cruel!? And why do these humiliating things always seem to happen to me!? He continued to be awkward, he had no idea how to handle the situation. Shortly after the incident we packed up all our stuff and he drove me home. Yes, there was an attempted kiss on the doorstep. No, it did not happen.

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Teal Wrap Dress: Birthday present from Carissa

Vintage Floral Brooch: eBay

Yellow Stilettoes: Savers

Gold Cuff Bracelet: Goodwill- Boston

Large Round Framed Glasses: Zenni Optical

Photos By Charlotte Tidwell

Beautiful Italian Shoes? Yes Please.

This entire outfit is courtesy of my future mother-in-law, Julie Heckert. Remember when she took me to Goodwill in Salt lake as a belated birthday present? She knew the secret to my soul. Mmmmmmmmm I love thrift shopping. Julie is actually the one who found these delicious suede heels, that Julie has got an eye for expensive Italian shoes. She found me three pairs that I ended up loving! It’s gotta be that Italian blood of hers. And this tweed trumpet skirt was just what I’ve been looking for to add to my work wardrobe…meaning my all day every day wardrobe. It’s always an issue for me. My fiancé was telling me the other night that I need to learn how to dress for the occasion, but I say “why be drab when you could be fab!?” Who’s with me!? Anyone? Anyone at all? Ugh. He’s got a point.

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Black (but secretly they are navy) Suede Heels: Goodwill- Salt Lake City

Brown, Black, and Cream Tweed Trumpet Skirt: Goodwill0 Salt Lake City

Black Button-Up Light Sweater: Julie hand-me-down

Gold Chain Necklace: Forever 21

Photography By Charlotte Tidwell