Steven and Andrew were wed on April 3, 2016. April 3 is a meaningful day for the couple, as it marks their first date, the day they got engaged, and most importantly, their wedding day. They pulled off DIY rainbow bracelets for their guests that said “Andrew & Steven’s Gay Wedding 04-03-16” which definitely gives you their sense of humor. Their wedding was entirely rainbow-themed from their rainbow socks to their rainbow raccoon tails all the way to their rainbow drinks! The day started off with lots of wind, but quickly got warmer before they read their handwritten vows to each other at Cheers & Lakeside Chalet, a private 70-acre property with ponds, forests and lush grounds.
FROM THE PHOTOGRAPHER
Andrew and Steven both got ready for their nuptials at Cheers & Lakeside Chalet in Lancaster, Ohio. Andrew hid away in one of their cute, lodge-style rooms while Steven got ready in a room next to where the ceremony and reception were located. This venue was gorgeous to begin with, but with the couple’s special touches, it was even more amazing! Their wedding theme was rainbow and red, orange, yellow, green, blue and violet tastefully decorated the venue. Every detail was planned perfectly. The wedding invitations and wedding programs were made by Design with Heart and beautifully complimented the couple’s theme.
Andrew and Steven’s parents were with them before the ceremony, helping them prepare. It was wonderful seeing all of them together, being silly and enjoying the time before the big event. I was with Andrew as his mom and dad helped him calm his nerves and get dressed. Tony (my husband and photography partner) was with Steven and his parents, capturing his coolness under pressure. We caught some candid moments between Steven and Andrew and their moms, detail shots and getting ready shots.
After they were all dressed, Andrew headed over to the ceremony location where Steven (and everyone else) was waiting. Steven was escorted by his mom and dad. Then, two-by-two the wedding party headed down the aisle until it was time for Andrew to walk down. He was also escorted by his parents, and Steven and Andrew’s first look was precious.
Steven and Andrew wrote their own vows to each other. Andrew tried his best to hold himself together as he read his vows aloud. Both vows were beautifully written. They made us laugh, they made us cry and they made us a little jealous of their relationship. After the vows, the couple said “I do” and then released two white doves over the lake. The couple shared their first kiss as husband and husband and everyone celebrated with tears and applause.
After a quick receiving line, we shot the formal family photos and then took Steven, Andrew and his parents outside for some more fun. Steven and Andrew bought some fun accessories for themselves and their parents to wear when being introduced into the reception. We had to get shots of this, and afterwards we had the chance to work with the boys alone.
After the fun introduction at the reception, Steven and Andrew’s best men gave their speeches. I don’t usually share toast photos online; however, one of their best men was Andrew’s brother. He gave one of the most moving toasts I’ve ever heard. He actually had to stop talking during his speech and let one of the other groomsmen take over for him. Andrew encouraged his brother throughout his speech and consoled him when it got more emotional.
This is the second wedding Tony and I have photographed where there was an epic cake smash. Honestly, cake smash photos usually aren’t share worthy, but in this case, they totally were. You can just see the “I’m going to get you good” look in Andrew’s face as he unwraps his cupcake for Steven in the first photo below of the sequence (make sure you get a look at the wedding guest who was wearing the hat in the background). After Andrew gets Steven, Andrew’s dad comes up to hold his arms in order for Steven to get his payback.
After the boys got cleaned up, it was time for first dances. Steven and Andrew had their first dance as husband and husband before they shared touching dances with their mothers. Their rainbow raccoon tails even made an appearance for the dances.
To complete the night, we grabbed the rings and played with some detail shots. M&M’s and Skittles were displayed around the venue for guests to enjoy, so why not put the rings in the dish for a pic? We also used the couple’s “signature album” which was a rainbow flag that all of the guests signed. Their rings were inscribed with their wedding date and special emjoi’s that they always use when texting each other.
Steven and Andrew, it was such a pleasure photographing all of your special moments — from your engagement session to your wedding day. We cannot wait for next time to take your picture! Thank you for making us part of your day. Your family and friends are absolutely wonderful. You will have an amazing future with them by your sides.
Photography & Video: Mak Rabbitt
Entertainment: Master Mix DJ Michael Walker
Stationery: Design With Heart
Suits: Wedding Plantation
Rainbow Cocktail: Cheers & Lakeside Chalet
Fruity Pebbles Treats: by Andrew’s father
Officiant: Andrew’s uncle