Once upon a time was the beginning of Chris and April’s story. Just a boy and a girl. Church camp, music, and a big group of friends dominated their early memories together. Years of friendship developed into feelings for each other that just might have taken them by surprise at first! Once they discovered that God had made them just perfect for each other, years of friendship turned into years of waiting patiently for the right time to come. The time when they would promise each other forever.
I met Chris and April when I was in college in east Tennessee. Far away from my family and hours away from Joel (who was my dashing, young boyfriend at the time), I found a home away from home in my new church family. I remember riding to church a few times with the DeTroye family, Chris and his brothers in the backseat, never dreaming that one day I would have the honor of photographing his marriage to one of the sweet girls that reached out to me with her friendship during that time.
Fast forward a few years, and this sweet, patient couple is saying, “I do!” Chris and April recruited the help of their family and friends to put endless hours of love into this amazing, crafty, DIY wedding! April has always been super creative, and she put her talents to good use!
We swoon when the groom surprises his bride on their wedding day with a sweet gesture of how much he’s cherishing this day. Chris had us deliver a surprise gift to April while she was getting her hair and makeup done. So, so sweet!
Oh, the First Look. We can never say enough wonderful things about this moment. We snuck over to an adorable little park in downtown Kingsport to take some pictures, and it made the perfect romantic backdrop for the morning. Chris was so, so precious when he saw April for the first time.
Enter the groomsmen. These guys were just ridiculously awesome.
We adore bridal parties that will be totally goofy with us. We didn’t even have to prompt this one! A couple of the bridesmaids and groomsmen switched their bouquet for a flask, and it just went from there. So hilarious!
One more goofy moment, courtesy of the groom… (and I love how the rest of the bridal party has no idea what’s going on and are just smiling away so sweetly! Except April. She so knows what she’s getting into.)
Oh, these precious girls! As beautiful on the inside as they are on the outside, they were just a dream.
I just had to throw this one in for you guys to see. We were taking just a couple more bridal portraits of April when Chris jumped in and surprised his bride with a kiss. Her face is so adorably priceless!
After a dreamy bride and groom session at the park, we headed back to the church to get ready for the ceremony!
We believe so much in those precious, unseen moments that make the day real. Sometimes you have a moment in a place where the light is not perfect, where hairspray bottles and yellow walls provide the backdrop. But those moments are the ones that you’ll remember most vividly. The moments where your best friends pray with you and for you. The moments where you come to the throne of God and thank the Creator of life and of love.
One more goofy picture (of course!) before Chris and April entered the reception. :)
They are just adorable.
We couldn’t get enough of all of April’s DIY decor at the reception!
Oooh, the candy bar. Love!!
Check out this cake. So. Amazing.
The groom might just be a Dr Enuf fan. Just maybe. :)
A little dancing and a lot of sweet laughter filled this reception.
Check out Chris and April’s dreamy engagement session here!
Chris and April, we know how much this day meant to you. We’re so honored and blessed to have been a part of your story! Thank you for your friendship, and for choosing your wedding date so we could be there to photograph it! :) You two are just the bees knees!
A huge shout out to the people that helped make this wedding day beautiful!
Photography: Joel and Amber Wedding Photography :)
Hair Artist: Emilea Eskola
Makeup Artist: Holly Summers
Officiant: Brent Bradley
Musicians: Elizabeth Saulsbury (piano), Katie Richardson (harp)
Videographer: Isaac Ellis
Catering: Marisa Neil
Cake Artist: Cathy Miller
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