I don’t exactly love winter weather, but I sure do love winter weddings! I might be a little biased since my husband and I had a winter wedding, but there’s just something special about them! Katelyn and Will will probably agree with me, and their January wedding at The Cheshire in St. Louis was a beautiful day with fairly mild weather for Missouri at that time of year! Their big day was a nice contrast to their summer engagement session, and we had plenty of sun and smiles, and an epic dance party to end the night!
Katelyn and Will’s wedding day began with them getting ready separately; Katelyn with her girls in a beautiful room at The Cheshire, where the reception would be held, and Will with his guys at his and Katelyn’s house. Both crews were calm and relaxed, having fun visiting as they prepared for the day. Katelyn’s Renaissance-style suite had this incredible, dramatic light coming through the windows, so we made great use of it to create some gorgeous bridal portraits to match the cozy charm of the hotel and reception space. (Will looked great, too!)
After Will arrived at the hotel and Katelyn had her first look with her dad (so sweet!), we made our way outside to the courtyard for the bride and groom to have an intimate first look with just the two of them…and me…and Brittany, my second shooter. They were so excited to see each other, I don’t think they even noticed we were there snapping away! And with that, it was time to travel to the church to get these two married!
Katelyn and Will’s first look didn’t take away any of the magic of the two of them seeing each other as Katelyn walked down the aisle with her father, and Will was just as in awe of his beautiful bride. The couple exchanged vows and rings in their gorgeous church, surrounded by the warm glow of the church lanterns and the love and support of their family and friends. After sealing their vows with the first kiss as a married couple, Mr. and Mrs. Hatch walked down the aisle together before joining their family at the altar for photographs together.
January is a great month for a winter wedding; you’re right between the holidays and Valentine’s Day, Forest Park isn’t packed full of people and other wedding groups also taking photos, and St. Louis often has these crazy weather days where it isn’t a frozen tundra outside! Katelyn and Will were lucky enough for just that, and the winter sun gave us gorgeous light to take some beautiful photos outdoors in Forest Park without completely freezing our asses off (it was still chilly, and the bridesmaids happily made good use of all of the hand warmers I brought). My plan to take photos at The Muny to be sheltered from the wind sooooort of backfired in that we were in the shade and it was more of a wind tunnel, but this group powered through and we got some really great photos with the wedding party!
We then sent the whole crew back to the bus to warm up while the newlyweds got to snuggle up for their portraits together. With their black, white, and gold color scheme, I knew The Muny and Pagoda Lake would be a perfect match and provide a stunning backdrop for their photos. We timed it perfectly to catch the glow of the sun dropping behind the pagoda and lighting up the dried grass all around them. I’m swooning just thinking about it all again!
With picture time out of the way, the couple and wedding party were ready to get the party started and hopped on the bus to head to a little cocktail hour pre-game with all of their guests at Tamm Ave Bar in Dogtown. Mr. and Mrs. Hatch were greeted at the door with glasses of Champagne and then were ushered to the game room to join their guests for a toast and time to mingle on the patio!
As cocktail hour began, Katelyn and Will took a moment to themselves (and again…photographers there as the third and fourth wheels) in the cigar lounge at The Cheshire. We just had to get a few more dramatic photos of these two together to match the badass lounge vibe they had going on in that room! We got them back to cocktail hour quickly so they could enjoy the time with friends and family and their jazz trio that provided some really rad music!
Once everyone made their way upstairs to the stunning reception room, the wedding party and newlyweds were announced in! They cut and enjoyed their cake (dessert before dinner is always great!) before Katelyn’s father welcomed and thanked everyone and dinner was served. Phenomenal toasts were given by the couple’s siblings, and then it was time to dance.
Katelyn and her father’s dance together was a wonderful surprise to everyone, as they danced to a recording of her grandfather singing, and I don’t think Will’s mom stopped smiling once as she shared a dance with her son. Katelyn and Will’s first dance finished with a bang as they invited everyone else to join them on the dance floor, and then the party just didn’t stop! The dance party went on all night, while guests also enjoyed photos in the photo booth and leaving voicemails for the couple with their vintage phone audio guestbook!
As always, we had one last “parting shot” with the bride and groom before letting them celebrate the rest of the night. We met on the candlelit stairs for Katelyn and Will’s last photos of the night, which were both fun and sweet, right until their moment got crashed by a fun party photo together with friends!
Katelyn & Will’s Winter Wedding Dream Team:
Planner/Coordinator: Ali Margherio
Katelyn’s Attire: White Traditions Bridal House, gown by Justin Alexander
Hair & Make-up: Lili Hu Looks
Will’s Attire: The Black Tux
Jeweler: Genovese Jewelers
Florals: Rouge Floral Design
Ceremony Venue: St. James the Greater Catholic Church
Reception Venue/Hotel: The Cheshire
Catering: Boundary at The Cheshire
Dessert: The Cakery
DJ: Greg Buerkle
Jazz Trio: Arranged by Mike Murano
Photobooth: Everyday Elegance
Transportation: JED Limousine
Photography: Kelly Cook