Breitenbach Wine Cellars is way out in Amish country, and I’m not going to lie–it was a little challenging to find, even with my trusty Google Maps. But once I got to the top of the hill where the Toolshed sits, it was oh-so-worth-it. What a beautiful place to have a wedding.
I met Cailie when I photographed her sister’s wedding in 2016. Not only was it a great wedding, but I remembered her family being particularly friendly and nice. So I was super excited when Cailie emailed me about photographing her wedding. I absolutely love it when family members come back to see me for their special events. It’s one of the perks of being a wedding and portrait photographer. Though the downside is accidentally calling the bride by her sister’s name–every photographer’s nightmare.
When I arrived at the Toolshed at Breitenbach, Cailie was already upstairs getting ready. She slipped into her gorgeous wedding dress from Henri’s in Columbus and her bridesmaids’ jaws dropped to the floor. She was absolutely stunning. When she completed the look with her grandmother’s necklace, there wasn’t a dry eye in the place. Cailie’s grandmother passed away less than a year ago, and her absence was keenly felt that day.
I always tell my clients their wedding day is not about me taking pictures, it’s about them getting married. It’s my job to take pictures while they get married. And that philosophy was put to the test when Cailie struggled not to cry as her mother and sister placed her grandmother’s jewelry around her neck. I remembered their grandmother from her sister’s wedding, and she was absolutely lovely. I knew they had a special relationship with her, and my heart broke for Cailie and her family in this moment, when I could see how deeply they wished her grandmother was there. My eyes welled up, so I hid behind my camera, and stayed quiet. Because the day wasn’t about me. I kept my camera plastered to my face, and tried to show them my heartfelt compassion for their loss through the photos I took of that moment.
The rest of the day was beautiful. Late October sunlight on a hilltop winery is an amazing spot for a wedding. Clients who are willing to try anything and let me be as creative as I wanna be, are a dream. Their wedding portraits at sunset could be a study in lighting, and how/when to do wedding portraits. Here are some of my favorites from Cailie and Allen’s Toolshed at Breitenbach Winery wedding.
Ceremony and Reception: The Toolshed at Breitenbach Wine Cellars
Flowers: Enchanted Acres Floral
Cake: Litty’s Cakes and Cookies
Music: Mobile Jams
Food: Theo’s Catering
Cailie’s Dress: Henri’s