Saphire Estate Wedding
Jacqueline & Michael
October 6th, 2019
It can be so tempting when you're getting married to sterilize every aspect of your day and conform to the standard decor and traditions of what you think a wedding is "supposed to be" that you forget what it's "supposed to be" is about you.
Because of this, I absolutely LOVE when couples find cool ways to show off their true personalities and nowhere was this clearer during Jacqueline and Michael's October wedding at Saphire Estate in Sharon, Massachusetts, than in the little ways they highlighted their love of the Boston Bruins.
Be it a Bruins-colored tie for the groom, his matching set of cuff links and socks, the bride's Bruins garter or their hockey-infused centerpieces and invitations, you couldn't walk away from their wedding wondering where their sports allegiance lies.
But it was their wedding cake that, to me, summed up the day nicely. On one side, it was the standard three-level white cake. But on the back? Nothing but Bruins logos everywhere.
That theme of staying timeless when necessary and respecting the magnitude of a classic wedding while also finding ways your own personality and spirit is why Jacqueline and Michael's wedding was so much fun and a truly awesome day for both the bride and groom at the center of it and the photographer hired to document it all.
My coverage of Jacqueline and Michael's big day started at one of my favorite places to be: Patriot Place.
But, even though this was a Sunday in the fall in New England, being in the grounds that Tom Brady and Bill Belichick built didn't involve football on this lovely October afternoon as the Pats were in Washington and I was on site to capture Jacqueline's bridal prep at the on-site Hilton Garden & Inn hotel.
And what a relaxing bridal prep it was. With just one bridesmaid, her mom and her two flower girls on site, Jacqueline's prep session was a breeze and we were essentially ready to go an hour or more before needed.
Talk about an easy start to what is normally a crazy, time-crunched and stressful day.
Even though I enjoyed Jacqueline's relaxing bridal prep session, I couldn't help but anxiously count down the minutes remaining for us to leave as I was super eager to check out her wedding/reception venue as I had never been to Saphire Estate before and it was at the top of my list of places I wanted to shoot a wedding at.
When we did arrive, I knew right from the moment we walked in the bridal suite it would remain there even after the day was over.
Even though Jackie was as cool as a cucumber for most of her bridal prep, I could tell how much this day meant to her and those around her as her wedding ceremony approached faster and faster.
And, in what was one of the sweetest things I've seen in quite some time, I couldn't help but think "Aww!" when Jackie asked her mom to help her put her shoes on, proving little girls never really grow up and are never too old to ask for their mother's help.
Add in an emotional first look with her dad and Jackie was definitely ready to get out of that bridal prep area before she cried any more.
Which was good because her wedding ceremony would be full of laughs and smiles in place of those tears.
Right from the moment Michael saw his bride and the sun strained to poke through the clouds, I could tell this would be a special wedding ceremony and this bride and groom made sure that was true.
Jacqueline and Michael's ceremony wasn't long but it was full of touching moments between the bride and groom. I especially loved the way they looked at each other as they held hands and exchanged their rings and vows.
As perfect as Jacqueline and Michael's day was going up to the moment they said "I do," I've learned very few, if any, weddings go off perfectly and on this day, the biggest hiccup was yet to come as, unbeknownst to us, Michael was going to suddenly get ill during formal photos.
But, like the truly amazing team they are, Jacqueline and Michael never stressed and never really let it bother them. We gave Michael some time to recover and, after asking if he wanted to keep going, the groom powered through and we captured a wide variety of fun bride and groom portraits in the time we had remaining before the start of their reception.
I only mention it here, honestly, because it was inspiring to see Jackie and Mike tackle their first challenge as newlyweds so well and not buckle under the pressure of the moment. And once Michael felt better, the rest of the night was a breeze.
Speaking of Jackie and Mike's reception, I don't know if they could have picked a better location for their theme as Saphire Estate really was stunning with their yellow and blue theme and custom Bruins-related decor.
While we're on the subject of ways Jacqueline and Michael took the typical wedding reception and added their own flair, I have to say that their soundtrack to the night was quite possibly my favorite part of their wedding.
Not only did they share their first dance to "Tangled up in you" by Staind but their DJ Mike Tarara from Music Matters even incorporated a bunch of heavy metal/rock music into the flow and it worked perfectly.
Then again, I may just be partial because I love that kind of music but I feel like it made all of Jackie and Mike's big moments stand out, starting with that first dance.
Following their first dance and a handful of sweet and funny toasts, Jacqueline and Michael wanted to try their hand at some sunset photos and how could I say no?
I really loved the shots of these newlyweds on the small beach near their venue, perhaps more so than our first round of photos, because Michael was feeling worlds better and looked more like himself than he did before.
It didn't hurt that we got a nice sunset to cap those photos either.
With formal photos over, for real this time, Jacqueline and Michael went straight into the rest of their formalities for the evening. They started by cutting their cake which, by the way, was a huge hit for their friends and family members who adored the two sides to the dessert.
Moments later, Jackie shared a heartfelt dance with her father ... who had secretly worked with the DJ to create custom lyrics to their chosen song before presenting her with a frame of said lyrics in a real watershed moment.
Michael and his mom capped the festivities with a sweet dance of their own, during which I don't think the groom's mom stopped smiling once.
The moment the formalities of the evening were over, Jacqueline and Michael's guests wasted no time hitting the dance floor and tearing things up and they never slowed down at all. Not once. All night.
Sunday night wedding or no Sunday night wedding, this was a party through and through and it was a blast to photograph.
As much fun as Jackie and Mike's reception was, it wouldn't have been nearly as big a hit if the bride and groom weren't seemingly at the center of the dance floor all night long.
It was only fitting that they closed their evening in the center of their friends and family members for a beautiful final dance that really put a bow on the whole event.
As I got ready to leave Jacqueline and Michael's wedding, I couldn't help but think about how much fun the entire day was and how the bride and groom did an amazing job living in every little moment that defined the afternoon.
When you're planning a wedding, everyone tells you to cherish the day because it goes by so fast and I think Jackie and Mike really took that to heart. They stayed true to their vision of what a wedding should be right from the start and it was absolutely perfect. Even when it wasn't.
So congratulations Jacqueline and Michael on a wonderful wedding day and best of luck in your future together. If your wedding proved anything, it's that there's no obstacle you can't handle. Together. Always.
-Paul J. Spetrini
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The Vendor List:
Photographer: Paul J. Spetrini, Paul J. Spetrini Photography; Bride's Hair: Colleen Harty from Shear Style Hair Salon; Bride's Make-up: Courtney Leger from Courtney Leger Beauty; Bride's Dress: Spark Bridal; Dress Alterations: Rose from Sewing Creations by Rose; Groom's Suit: Eileen from Simply Dainty; Florist: Cheryl from Petals Florist and Gift Shop; Ceremony & Reception Location: Saphire Estate, located in Sharon, Massachusetts; DJ/Photobooth: Mike Tarara from Music Matters; Cake: A Piece of Cake LLC; Officiant: Rev. Deborah Hoch.