Wright's Mill Farm Wedding
Nicole & Matthew
October 12th, 2019
Whenever a bride asks me to meet her at her wedding venue before the big day to scout the location, I'm always a little bit hesitant to say yes as I know so much can change between our meeting and the actual wedding day.
This is especially true when the wedding in question takes place in the fall in New England but as I met with Nicole back in early September at Wright's Mill Farm, roughly six weeks before she said "I do" at the venue, I figured the best I could hope for was a nice day with a little bit of colorful foliage.
What I didn't know was it would be a stunning day that, despite the clouds, provided the perfect backdrop for a beautiful couple, a beautiful family and a beautiful wedding.
To say this was one wedding I was excited to photograph is an understatement and, yet, it somehow still exceeded my expectations.
From the moment I walked into Nicole's bridal prep session at Wright's Mill Farm, I knew this would be a special day.
Not only was the rustic setting full of awesome places to get detail shots of her dress, like this barn right across the street from where she was getting ready, but the bridal prep room itself had a really nice mirror that lended itself to some fun and creative shots of her as she put her dress on and read a note from her soon-to-be husband.
Nicole did a great job of keeping her emotions in check on her wedding day. What I didn't know at the time was that Matthew wouldn't be as lucky.
In what was easily one of my favorite moments this year, I got to watch Matthew's entire mental process as he saw his wife come down the aisle and he had, without question, one of the sweetest reactions I've ever seen a groom have in that moment as he just about lost it when he saw her emerge from the brush of the venue and start her walk to him to say "I do."
Talk about a great way to start a wedding ceremony.
Speaking of Nicole and Matt's ceremony, I don't know if they could have chosen a more beautiful place to become husband and wife. Wright's Mill Farm has a dedicated wedding ceremony area overlooking a waterfall in the middle of the woods and I can't imagine it looks better than it did on this October afternoon.
Nicole and Matt's ceremony was about 20 minutes long and featured a ton of sweet, sentimental moments between the bride and groom. I loved listening to their officiant, who kept the mood jovial, and I could see how much this meant to Nicole and Matt just by looking at the intense way they stared at each other as they exchanged rings and said their vows. This was truly a day they waited their entire lives for.
Following their ceremony, I was champing at the bit to have Nicole and Matt to myself for bride and groom portraits as I wanted to take full advantage of the luscious and vibrant grounds of their venue and we did just that.
Whether it was laying across jagged rocks to get just the right angle for a waterfall photo or trying not to fall off a bridge for their family and wedding party shots, I couldn't get enough of my time with these newlyweds.
By the time I was finished with Nicole and Matt's couples portraits, I felt like I could have left right there and called it a successful day. Thankfully, though, we still had their entire reception to shoot and this is where the night turned into something even more special and different.
Wright's Mill Farm is a beautiful location to have a wedding but their reception space is something you have to see to appreciate and Nicole and Matt did an incredible job blending the rustic elements of the venue with the handmade touches they wanted to use for decorations.
One of my favorite moments from Nicole and Matthew's wedding was their first dance. Set to "The Luckiest" by Ben Folds — which, by the way, summed this bride and groom up perfectly — Nicole and Matt danced during the beautiful string lights and decorations of the barn and the moment was just touching.
Following their first dance, Nicole and Matt settled in to a pair of touching speeches from their best man and maid of honor, respectively, a great dinner and started the back half of their formalities with an adorable cake cutting.
And even if they did technically mess up by cutting the top layer of the cake instead of the bottom, I don't think anyone would hold it against them.
I especially loved Nicole and Matt's dances with their parents as the big stage feel of the dance floor at Wright's Mill Farm really made these moments stand out.
Not to be outdone, the newlyweds got to have a surprise of their own as a group of their friends sang a special song to them to kick start the dancing portion of their evening.
I knew early on that Nicole and Matt were likely going to have a jam-packed dance floor but it wasn't until their kids really took over and started rocking out that the night took a sharp turn into absolute fun.
And, of course, the bride and groom were dead set in the middle of all the fun on the dance floor once they made their rounds with guests and checked out the fire pit outside.
As I got ready to head out of Nicole and Matt's wedding, I could tell they still had a long night of dancing planned and, to me, that's always a positive sign as these two really lived in the moment and soaked in every special second of their wedding day.
It's not often that I feel like a bride and groom hit every little moment of their wedding day the way they intended but I can confidently say Nicole and Matt did. These two had a clear vision for the day they wanted and they knocked it out of the park.
And whether that was thanks to Mother Nature blessing us with a picture perfect fall afternoon or their love setting the tone from the moment they saw each other until the moment the night ended, this was one wedding I know couldn't have gone better if they tried.
So congratulations Nicole and Matthew on an amazing wedding day and best of luck on your journey 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 Make-up: Leah Raffel from Face the Day Artistry in Stonington, Connecticut; Bride's Dress: Melissa Ashley, Westerly, Rhode Island; Groom's Suit: Trinket Shoppe Danielson, Connecticut; Florist: McKenna’s Flower Shop Norwich, Connecticut; Ceremony & Reception Location: Wright's Mill Farm, Canterbury, Connecticut; DJ: Mark Sullivan from Upbeat DJ, Canterbury, Connecticut; Cake: Chocolate Rose Bake Shop, Griswold, Connecticut.