Chandler, ARIZONA :: Jamy & Marvin :: Cultural Traditions // Real LGBTQ Wedding

:: Cultural Traditions ::

Photographed & Submitted by :: {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography

East met West in this AMAZING wedding that took place in June 2015 at NOAH’s in Chandler! This was all about fun, food, wine, and the coming together of Marvin’s Chinese family and Jamy’s Midwest Family. These families had just met for the first time the evening before at the rehearsal dinner, and I was taken with the love and joy that oozed throughout the evening! Jamy and Marvin truly wanted their wedding day to be something that folks “oohed” and “aahed” over, as well as talked about for months to come! With careful planning, they did just that…

No one, and I mean not ONE guest was allowed into the ballroom until it was time to be seated for the ceremony. Beforehand, guests were treated by the soothing sounds of the Allegro Quartet, as they sipped on libations provided by A Couple of Bartenders. {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography provided a “portrait booth” (not a photo booth!) where couples and families could get photos taken and printed out to take home as a remembrance of the day. Straight to the Plate Catering provided white gloved, butler passed appetizers that were most scrumptious!

When the time came, folks were escorted to the main ballroom where their senses were blown away by the breathtaking aroma of the flowers, the exquisite display of lighting, floral design, and high end table settings, as the Allegro Quartet continued with their melodic music. Everyone sat down at their tables, yes, tables, not just seats, as this was going to be a wedding like no other, that flowed like one of Jamy and Marvin’s dinner parties.

The ceremony was conducted by a dear friend, and fellow wine club member, Jacqueline Diaz. She captivated everyone with her “storytelling ways” that brought both families together, as well as a number of tears to people’s eyes. Following the ceremony, we were all brought back to reality by the thunderous drums that preceded the traditional Chinese wedding dragon who followed close behind. This in itself was a cultural blast with everyone’s eyes riveted on the dragon and cell phones capturing every moment of the display. This ended with the traditional presentation of a scroll to Jamy and Marvin, and applause by all.

Jamy and Marvin love a good party. Even though this was their wedding day, they wanted it to be about everyone who had come to celebrate, so they planned everything accordingly and everything flowed perfectly.

As soon as everyone was re-seated, a dinner prayer was said, and Straight to the Plate Catering got the buffet line going. Jamy and Marvin managed to grab a few bites before sneaking out to sign their marriage license, as their guests enjoyed the fare. Following dinner, toasts were given, thanks were said, and Scott Faver of the Party Favers queued the music for the first dance, which was a stage production in itself. Jamy and Marvin “danced in the clouds” for their first dance as a married couple, and it was beyond magical. After their first dance, Jamy and Marvin made their way to the three tiered wedding cake by Sue Jacobs cakes that sat upon a bed of flowers created by Eternal Event Designs. The cake was cut, and the party got started!

The newlyweds remember all too well all the fun weddings they’d gone to, and how the photos just seemed to be repetitious, and sometimes a bit blackmail worthy, so this is where the photography ended….well, until a group “shot” was done to toast the lovebirds.

You may recognize these two handsome grooms from their engagement session feature! Check it out here.

DISTINCTIONS

Cultural Traditions. Family. Perfect Planning.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography
Venue :: NOAH’s Event Venue
Event Planner :: {MRSter Approved} De Atley Events
Design {Floral, Draping, Lighting} :: {MRSter ApprovedEternal Event Design
Officiant :: Jacqueline Diaz
Apparel :: Celebrity Tux & Tails
Catering :: Straight to the Plate Catering
Cake :: Sue Jacobs Cakes
Bar Service :: Couple of Bartenders
Rentals :: YKnot Party Rentals
Musicians :: Allegro Quartet
DJ :: The Party Favers
Lion Dancers :: Arizona Martial Arts Lion Dance Association
Invitations :: Magrith Tsen Keck
Menu & Place Cards :: Pixels & Posies Prints & Printables

LOCATION

Chandler, Arizona, USA

COLORS

    

Chandler, ARIZONA :: Cody & Sian :: Long Distance Love // Real Wedding

:: Long Distance Love ::

Submitted by :: The Bride
Photographed by :: Poppy Seed Photography

Cody and I have a love story like no other.

The both of us actually met when we were toddlers; I was two years old and Cody was three years old. His dad was in the American Air Force and they were stationed in Oxfordshire in the UK (where I am originally from). Our siblings went to school together, and our families became friends because of this. After a while, Cody and his family moved back to the USA, and after that, our families unfortunately lost touch.

We had never forgotten about the Clark family, and in fact, my sister spent hours tirelessly searching the internet years later, trying to find them… Unfortunately not having any luck!

Almost twenty years later, totally out of the blue, Cody’s dad John, found my mum on Facebook… Pretty crazy! From there, Cody and I reconnected, and over time, both felt an undeniable connection that neither of us had experienced before. After almost a couple of years of doing the (extremely) long distance thing, travelling back and forth between Arizona and England to see each other (that’s over 5,000 miles away!), Cody proposed to me on Thousand Steps Beach in California on the 15th of March 2014.

I relocated to Arizona at the end of August 2014, so Cody and I could begin our life together. We then got married on the 26th of October that year! We chose to get married in an air hangar, and to have a vintage 1940’s theme; both symbolising our long distance love journey, and how we originally met by his dad being in the American Air Force. The smaller details were a fusion of British and American culture.

We had a very intimate ceremony with just our close family in attendance; some who had travelled from the UK to be there. We were also able to Skype in some of my other close family members from home who were unable to make it! The wonders of technology! Some of Cody’s closest friends joined us for the evening reception, which was nice and laid back; drinks flowing and a taco truck serving some delicious food!

It was a perfect day for the both of us, and a huge step in our crazy journey of life together!

“It might take a year, it might take a day, but what’s meant to be will always find its way.” Unknown Author

PSSTT :: If you missed their engagement session, click here to take a peek!

DISTINCTIONS

Long Distance Love. American & British. Journey of Life.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: Poppy Seed Photography
Venue {Ceremony & Reception} :: Chandler Air Service
Apparel {Bride} :: Beau Belles
Apparel {Groom} :: Rose Tuxedo
Apparel {Bridesmaids} :: JCPenney
Hair :: Hair By Rubi King {HRK}
Rentals {Tea Crockery} :: Tea Crockery
Rentals {Vintage Car} :: Roscoe & Louie
Floral :: {MRSter Approved} Butterfly Petals

LOCATION

Chandler, Arizona, USA.

COLORS

  

Chandler, ARIZONA :: Stephanie & Jessica :: A Love Story // Real LGBTQ Wedding

:: A Love Story  ::

Photographed & Submitted by :: {MRSter Approved} Mi Amore Photography

Stephanie & Jessica shared their wedding vows in February, amongst their closest family and friends. The venue they chose for their big day was Noahs Event Venue in Chandler, Arizona. They decorated the event center with their favorite books, and guests were given coloring book marks to doodle on! The dessert table was filled with delicious cupcakes and their cheescake wedding cake that had the cutest little toppers!

Their love for each other is truly special.

DISTINCTIONS

Bookworms. Desert Landscape. Cute Cupcakes.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: {MRSter ApprovedMi Amore Photography
Venue ::NOAH’S Event Venue

LOCATION

Chandler, Arizona, USA.

COLORS

    

Phoenix, ARIZONA :: Kishia & Jen :: Colorful Farm Wedding // Real LGBTQ Wedding

:: Colorful Farm Wedding ::

Photographed & Submitted by :: {MRSter ApprovedAlyssa Campbell Photography

Kishia and Jen wanted a beautiful outdoor casual morning celebration of their love and {MRSter Approved} The Farm at South Mountain couldn’t have been a better backdrop to their day. They had musician friends playing guitar and singing throughout the day, including a special song sung during the ceremony. Both Kishia and Jen’s daughters were in the ceremony, and two friends married them and did a fabulous job with the ceremony.

I could see Kishia and Jen’s love for their tribe throughout the wedding. I loved the moment right before the kiss where the officiant made the two wait for the big moment, causing hearty laughs from Kishia, Jen and their guests before he finally let them have their kiss to seal the deal!

It was such an honor to document their joy-filled, colorful wedding and Jen and Kishia were so open and warm and joyful.

DISTINCTIONS

Colorful. Friends & Family. Beautiful Brides.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: {MRSter Approved} Alyssa Campbell Photography
Venue :: {MRSter ApprovedThe Farm at South Mountain
Catering :: {MRSter Approved} Santa Barbara Catering
Floral :: Crazy Daisies Flowers

LOCATION

Phoenix, Arizona, USA.

COLORS

   

Gilbert, ARIZONA :: Jamy & Marvin :: Wine, Food, Friends... And LOVE! // Real LGBTQ Engagement

:: Wine, Food, Friends… And LOVE! ::

Photographed & Submitted by :: {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography

Meet Jamy {of MRSter Approved Eternal Event Design} and Marvin, a couple of the best guys you will ever meet. Funloving. Silly (and serious). Lovers of good wine, food, friends, and love.

Fourteen years ago in January, these two met at a bar in Chicago, and let’s just say the rest is history. Life has brought them from where they began in Chicago, out to the valley of the sun, where they’ve continued with their love of all that is good (wine, food, and friends). These two know how to put on a party, let me tell you!

Funny thing is, they’re not much for having their photos taken, so we had to come up with a fun way of capturing them. Thankfully, their engagement session was done as their friend and not their photographer, or we probably wouldn’t have been able to capture some of these shots (those of you who are photographers would understand!). So, we took a “walk” one cloudy day through old town Gilbert, and finished things off, with what else, a glass of wine?

Many thanks to the person who had their ADORABLE bike locked up, as this was our million dollar shot of the session! I might have to invest in one of these for future sessions!

I can’t even begin to tell you how honored I was when they asked me to be their wedding photographer! This was going to be my first Mr. & Mr. event, and I was THRILLED! I am looking forward to showing off their wedding images in a future submission, as they won the “2015 Best Wedding Under $50,000” presented by the International Special Event Society, Arizona Chapter. You’re gonna FLIP when you see what they managed to pull off!

DISTINCTIONS

MRSter Approved. LGBTQ Engagement. Time For Wine.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography

LOCATION

Gilbert, Arizona, USA.

Phoenix, ARIZONA :: Melanie & Laine :: Key To My Heart // Real LGBTQ Engagement

:: Key To My Heart  ::

Submitted & Photographed by :: {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography

Life is a journey in so many ways. In lives we lead, in the relationships we have, and sometimes, in the bodies we were born with.

I met Melanie {MRSter Advisory Board Member} and Laine last summer, as they had won an engagement session at the Phoenix Pride Silent Auction in June. Before our face to face meeting, Melanie had sent me a link to their website, I think to “prep” me for what I was going to be experiencing during my time with them. Take some time and enjoy the “journey” with them by taking a look at Melanie’s blog here.

Their engagement session ended up being a combination of an engagement and holiday photo session with Melanie’s four kids, who were just a hoot! They weren’t too keen on an actual photo shoot, but by the end, three of them had become my “helpers” and were asking if I’d ever need any models in the future! It was so wonderful to see how excited they were for their mom and Laine, and made the shoot even more fun with some of their antics (as you can see from the images!).

Laine’s transformation from a woman to a man has been quite incredible. They’ve planned their wedding around the time when Laine’s journey would be complete. Their engagement session took place close to the half way point of this journey, as they wanted the process documented through photos as well.

I’m so grateful to have been a part of this “journey” with them, and am so excited to follow their love story as it continues to unfold.

DISTINCTIONS

Engagement. Journey. LGBTQ Transformation. Family Photos.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: {MRSter Approved} Elizabeth Douglas Photography

LOCATION

Granada Park, Phoenix, Arizona

Scottsdale, ARIZONA :: Erika & Roberta :: Proposal Picnic // Real LGBT Engagement

:: Proposal Picnic ::

Submitted by :: Maria of Elizabeth Douglas Photography

Erika and Roberta (Robbi) were in from Harvard visiting Erika’s family for the holidays. Erika is a true Zonie (aka unicorn…born and raised in AZ), where Roberta is an East Coast gal. They took a day trip down to Southern Arizona where Erika LOVES to hike and explore. Roberta had something else in mind, so they stopped to pick up some wine, cheese and crackers, and turned it into a proposal picnic! I was completely taken in by the lovely ring, as I noticed a hint of blue in it…sure enough, it’s an aquamarine! What a wonderful choice for a beautiful bride to be (hey, and she’s already got her “something blue” for their wedding day!).

Needless to say, Erika said, “YES!” and we had the pleasure of capturing their Engagement Session, along with family portraits for Erika’s family. Keeping our fingers crossed that we’ll be meeting back up with them, either in Sedona or Hawaii for their wedding day as well!

CONGRATULATIONS, you two! Oh, and Erika, you still owe me a slice of Egg Nog Pie! LOL! (Erika is an AVID baker, and her goods look and sound scrumptious!).

DISTINCTIONS

Surprise. Proposal Picnic. Something Blue.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: Elizabeth Douglas Photography

LOCATION

Scottsdale, Arizona.

Scottsdale, ARIZONA :: Cody & Sian :: Childhood Sweethearts // Real Engagement

:: Childhood Sweehearts ::

Submitted by :: Fiancée, (and MRSter Social Media Queen), Sian.

Cody and I actually met on the school playground MANY years ago, when we were both just babies; I was two years old and Cody was three years old. His dad was in the American Air Force and they were stationed in Oxfordshire in the UK (where I am originally from). Our siblings went to primary school (elementary) together, and our families became friends because of this.

Almost twenty years later, Cody and I reconnected, and ended up falling head over heels for each other. After doing the long distance thing for a couple of years, Cody proposed to me on Thousand Steps Beach in California on the 15th of March 2014!

Due to the background of how we first met, we chose a park as the location for our engagement shoot. We played on the kids playground for half of the session, and it was so much fun! Our photographer, Chelsee, made us feel so relaxed and comfortable, the three of us were laughing and joking around all day. We then went to our second location, DC Ranch, to finish up the shoot. It was a blast, and as I’m sure you’ll agree, Chelsee captured some amazing engagement photos for us!

DISTINCTIONS

Party In The Park. Long Distance Love. Childhood Nostalgia.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Photography :: Poppy Seed Photography

LOCATION

Vista Del Camino Park & DC Ranch, Scottsdale, Arizona.

Phoenix, ARIZONA :: Happy Anniversary to Karen & Nelda - Arizona's First Same Sex Couple To Marry // Flashback Friday // Real LGBT Wedding

:: Happy Anniversary to Karen & Nelda ::

Photographed by :: Largo Photography

On November 23rd, 2014, the most historical wedding in the history of Arizona took place. The wedding of Karen and Nelda. Today, we hope you will join us in wishing them a very happy anniversary, and enjoy the incredible images from their day.

Though just over a year has passed since the wedding of these wonderful ladies, the whole day still stands out vividly in my mind. Karen and Nelda were one of the very first same-sex couples to obtain a marriage certificate in Arizona, and it was incredible to celebrate their union with a wedding event produced by local MRSter vendors.

The day started at the Orpheum Theatre in downtown Phoenix; the perfect venue for Karen and Nelda’s wedding ceremony. What a stage! The team did an incredible job with ensuring the lighting was perfect, and Butterfly Petals {MRSter Approved} blew everyone away with the floral wall that they designed and executed for the big day. It. Is. Rad!

After the moving ceremony, the guests made their way to the reception venue – The Farm at South Mountain {MRSter Approved}. The whole evening was full of love, laughter, and plenty of dancing! It was so wonderful to see such a huge number of guests there to celebrate the love that Karen and Nelda share. Later in the evening, Serendipity Cinematography {MRSter Approved} surprised Karen and Nelda with a same day edit, and I can assure you that there was not a dry eye in the house!

Thank you to all of those involved for making this the most epic wedding. After almost a 57 year engagement, Karen and Nelda needed a wedding with a wow factor… Something I think you can all agree was achieved thanks to all of the incredibly talented vendors involved. Thank you for being a part of Karen and Nelda’s journey.

You can find out more about Karen and Nelda’s love story here.

DISTINCTIONS

Making History. A Day To Remember. 57 Years In The Making.

THE PROFESSIONALS

Many thanks to the following (many of them FABuLIST) vendors who came together to support Karen and Nelda ::

Ceremony Venue :: Orpheum Theatre Phoenix
Evening Reception Venue ::  {MRSter Approved} – The Farm at South Mountain
Catering :: {MRSter Approved} – Santa Barbara Catering Company
Catering :: Aventura Catering
Floral :: {MRSter Approved} – Butterfly Petals
Event Planner :: {MRSter Approved} – Life Design Event Planning
Rentals :: {MRSter Approved} – Kool. Party Rentals
Rentals :: {MRSter Approved} – Cre8tive Event Rentals
Photography :: {MRSter Approved} – Cyndi Hardy Photography
Photography :: Keith Pitts Photography
Photography ::  Largo Photography
Photography :: Randy’s Vision Photography
Cinematography :: {MRSter Approved} – Serendipity Cinematography
Photo Booth :: {MRSter Approved} – The Traveling Photo Booth
Photo Booth :: Funbooth
Event Production :: Living Energy
DJ :: {MRSter Approved} – Got You Covered!
Hot Beverages :: {MRSter Approved} – Cappuccino Subito
Beverages :: Hensley
Beverages :: Alliance Beverages
Decor :: Creative Occasions
PR // Social Media :: Sherry L Butler Communications
Floral Preservation :: {MRSter Approved} – Floral Keepsakes
Transportation :: Carey Limousine
Transportation :: United Parking Systems
Wedding Cake :: Let Them Eat Cake

LOCATION

Phoenix, Arizona.

COLORS