Bittersweet Farm Wedding Photos
David & Janice
Bittersweet Farm, Westport, Massachusetts (Ceremony & Reception)
October 1st, 2023
If I could change one thing about most weddings, it would be how serious everyone takes everything. Yes, I get it. Weddings are incredibly special days and they mean a lot but, in my experience, the couples who have the best wedding days are the ones who take themselves the least seriously and that's one of the main reasons I had so much fun photographing David and Janice's big day at Bittersweet Farm back in October.
David and Janice said “I do” on an absolutely beautiful fall afternoon in Westport, Massachusetts and at no point during their entire wedding celebration did I ever feel the moment was anything other than delightful silliness. And I mean that in the best way possible.
Whether it was the bride coming down the aisle to “The Final Countdown,” the wedding party making sure to chow down on messy barbecue RIGHT before we started formal photos or one of the wildest and craziest receptions I've seen in years, David and Janice's day was downright fun and an amazing reminder of what can happen when two people stay true to themselves on the best day of their lives.
And I can think of no bigger compliment.
From the moment I walked into Bittersweet Farm to start my coverage of David and Janice's wedding day, I knew exactly what to expect. This was because, in large part, of the first thing I photographed: A first look between Janice and her father.
Now, most first looks are serious occasions that might spark a few laughs and tears but are overall pretty emotional, heartwarming moments. For Janice and her father, though? Not so much.
The first words I heard on Janice's wedding day were from her father who said, with 100 percent certainty “She wants me to cry but I'm not going to.” True to his word, he didn't and that didn't stop the bride from busting his chops over it.
I knew, right away, this would be a fun day and we were only getting started.
Thankfully, David and Janice's first look together was more akin to the traditional sappy and romantic moments I'm used to and love to document.
While the two of them still laughed and joked during it, it was nice to see this moment of the bride and groom alone and really able to savor the magnitude of the day they had ahead of themselves.
I was also happy we were able to give them a few minutes alone before the day ramped up all the way because once the ceremony started, it was go-go-go for the rest of the night.
David and Janice couldn't have chosen a better setting for their wedding ceremony. I've done a few weddings at Bittersweet Farm and when the weather is nice, their outdoor ceremony space is one of the nicest I've ever photographed.
I loved this ceremony for this bride and groom, if for nothing more than the hilarious moment when Janice surprised all her wedding guests with a professional wrestling-worthy entrance set to one of the greatest songs of all time in “The Final Countdown.”
David loved it and it's hard to blame him as the sheer ridiculousness of THAT song playing as a bridal processional song made it hard not to laugh for everyone there, photographer included.
It's easily among my favorite moments of this entire year and set the tone perfectly for their ceremony itself.
David and Janice's ceremony was everything I love about wedding ceremonies and then some. While there were some fun moments and jokes sprinkled in by their officiant, and the two of them certainly made sure to inject their personality into the proceedings, that never took away from how big a moment this clearly was for the bride and groom.
This is why I love still photography. It can capture so many things that are left unsaid and show you exactly how happy people are. In that regard, David and Janice's wedding ceremony was perfection and by the time they started dancing down the aisle after officially becoming husband and wife, I could tell these newlyweds were on cloud nine and happier than they'd ever been before now that their partnership was officially official.
Janice and David's wedding ceremony was about the last time the day was anything resembling “normal” and I say that in the best way as I love fun couples and few had as much fun as these two.
I knew things were going to slowly get crazier as everyone gathered together for formal photos but, before I even took the first posed shot, stopped what they were doing to have a bunch of barbecue. Priorities, right?
Still, I couldn't be upset. The vibe for these photos was so much fun and so relaxed that all I had to do was sit back and wait for the silliness to overtake the moment and it sure did. Over and over again.
Given the nature and tone of David and Janice's wedding day up until this point, I genuinely had no idea what to expect from their bride and groom formals. Thankfully, while we had a TON of fun during this part of the day (Especially with Janice's full on cheek grab of her man), we still got plenty of beautiful photos of the newlyweds and took full advantage of one of my favorite spots for bride/groom portraits.
I loved how these looked, especially the shots on the long winding road behind Bittersweet Farm's iconic white fence and while I could have worked with this bride and groom for another hour, I could tell both they (and I) wanted to get to the party portion of the evening as soon as possible.
First things first. I'd be remiss if I didn't take a moment to share some of the details of Janice and David's wedding day because, man, they knocked it out of the park.
Bittersweet Farm is a beautiful rustic venue and, admittedly, I might be a bit bias to any wedding color scheme that is purple-heavy but I loved all the little touches David and Janice put into their big day. These were definitely some of my favorites of the year.
I know guests were thrilled when they saw how the venue was laid out. And the minute the bride and groom were introduced? I know the excitement for what was to come skyrocketed.
David and Janice kicked off their wedding with a beautiful first dance set to “Lady May” by Tyler Childers.
The first, in my opinion, is where Bittersweet Farms proves to be one of the most underrated venues in New England and David and Janice's shows why. I loved how amazing this venue looked as these two danced for the first time as husband and wife and while the dance floor itself might not be huge, the beautiful string lights and wood beams always gives a first dance a special feeling in this location.
Talk about a great way to start a reception.
Following their first dance, David and Janice kept their reception simple yet timeless. The pair had three great speeches (kicked off by one of my favorite moments of the day when Janice's father broke his promise not to cry and Janice herself pumped her fist in celebration), a great father-daughter dance and a super cute cake cutting.
These moments, on their own, were tremendous. Little did I know the best was yet to come …
From the very first moment David and Janice's reception started, I knew the party was ON. To say this was one of my favorite receptions this year is an understatement. It was such an amazingly fun time that I lost track of time and just focused on capturing all the craziness around me.
And I could tell that's exactly what these newlyweds wanted and what their guests will take away from this day the most.
I think my favorite part about David and Janice's wedding reception was just how much fun the bride and groom themselves were having. Every single time I looked around, they were right in the thick of things dancing with friends and letting loose.
Janice, especially, was in great spirits and every time I thought this night peaked, it kept getting better and better.
As David and Janice's wedding came to a close, I was fortunate to stick around until the very end and see the bride and groom saying their goodbyes as I packed my gear up.
I am normally gone by the time this happens but it was really nice to see just how appreciative David and Janice were to all of their friends and family who stuck the night out and closed the evening out with them and, perhaps more importantly, it was awesome to see the full reality of the day start to dawn on both the bride and groom.
David and Janice had the wedding of their dreams, on their terms, and I adore when you leave an event knowing that's exactly what happened and that things couldn't have gone better if you tried.
So thank you David and Janice for allowing me to play a small part in capturing the magic you two had on that beautiful October afternoon in Westport. I wish you all the best on this new, exciting and (I can just about guarantee) fun chapter of your lives together as husband and wife. :)
-Paul J. Spetrini
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The Vendor List:
Photographer: Paul J. Spetrini, Paul J. Spetrini Photography; Bride's Hair: Krystal Rose of Salon Fusion; Bride's Make-Up: Maggie of Salon Fusion; Bride's Dress: Alexandra's Boutique; Groom's Suit: Men’s Wearhouse; Florist: Salo Wood Flowers; Ceremony & Reception Venue: Bittersweet Farm, Westport, Massachusetts; DJ: The Dapper Gents; Cake: Montillos.