//SPOTLIGHT// The St. Vrain Wedding Venue in Longmont

Well hey there! Any chance you're still looking for a wedding venue? What's that you say, you're looking for somewhere, urban, elegant and close to adorable places to take photos. Well, I'd say you're in luck! 

This new venue in Longmont, the St. Vrain, recently left me standing in the doorway drooling with my mouth open. Seriously. I cannot believe how perfect this place is!! I visited it the evening of Yore's Holiday Craft Fair and it was an adorable and charming event. While I was there, I took the opportunity to take a look around downstairs and fantasize about how gorgeous weddings there would be (and, of course, grabbed a couple photos too)!

"the St. Vrain recently left me standing in the doorway drooling..."

Overall, the St. Vrain wedding venue oozes class, style, and totally nails the balance between chic and urban. Exposed brick, whitewashed walls, chandeliers galore, and the whole place is full of these charming little areas that would be great for photos, or just different nooks for your guests to get lost in. You could easily stay in the venue for photos because its so stunning, but if you wanted to take a walk outside, the adorable old town of Longmont would be right at your feet!! How perfect is that. Say you're the type who wants those iconic mountain views as well as the perfect urban venue? Good thing you could drive about 10 minutes to get those gorgeous sunset shots before heading back to the venue. 

Does it sound too good to be true?? Trust me, that's what I thought too, but just check out these photos!! Then, go see it in real life and book your wedding there. Right. Now.

 

Every wall of this place could be an art piece on its own. They even feature several artists throughout the venue! ART LOVERS REJOICE!!

Every wall of this place could be an art piece on its own. They even feature several artists throughout the venue! ART LOVERS REJOICE!!

Does that wall have gold crystals in it?? Yes, yes it does. Check out all those cute couches and comfy areas to hang out as well!

Does that wall have gold crystals in it?? Yes, yes it does. Check out all those cute couches and comfy areas to hang out as well!

A little sneak peek into the two getting ready spaces... modern, chic, and just STUNNING. As a photographer, getting ready rooms are often the death of me. Most venues add them as an afterthought, but not the St. Vrain. I would hang out here all day!

A little sneak peek into the two getting ready spaces... modern, chic, and just STUNNING. As a photographer, getting ready rooms are often the death of me. Most venues add them as an afterthought, but not the St. Vrain. I would hang out here all day!

Here's some wider shots of the whole space. Check out the exposed beams, twinkle lights, and chandeliers in the upstairs room!!! Notice those gorgeous chairs and tables too! So much is already perfectly styled for you to use. 

Here's some wider shots of the whole space. Check out the exposed beams, twinkle lights, and chandeliers in the upstairs room!!! Notice those gorgeous chairs and tables too! So much is already perfectly styled for you to use. 

Getting married at the St. Vrain wedding venue?? Please get in touch so we can collab in this amazing space! 

Ilona + Alex | Union Station Engagement Photos

Ilona + Alex | Union Station Engagement Photos

Denver Union Station engagement photos with Ilona + Alex. Photography by Kate Merrill, Denver Wedding Photographer. 

//ADVICE// How to plan a wedding timeline

 
wedding timeline planning

This is something I spend a lot of time going over with my couples.  Even though almost every single one of the nearly 300 weddings I've worked has had the exact same basic timeline, it doesn't seem to be information that a lot of other vendors are trying to get into your hands! They just want to know what time you want dinner to be, what time you want your ceremony to be, but when you express an opinion they gently steer you towards this standard wedding timeline anyway. So, this post is all about how to plan your wedding timeline!

"Hold up!" you say..."I thought you were all about NON-Traditional weddings, Kate!" True. You caught me. Here's the thing, though. Nailing that "Non-Traditional" vibe works really well when you're riffing off the structure of how a "Normal" wedding should go. It gives your guests a sense of comfort that they know what will happen next, but then gives you the chance to knock their socks off with something crazy at the perfect moment. Plus, remember those venue coordinators who want your timeline to go just how they want? That conversation will go oh-so-much better if you can say..."Instead of a cocktail hour, we want to have a pre-dinner rock concert. Don't worry, our photographer said if we do our photos before the ceremony, she doesn't need cocktail hour for photos." Hook. Line. And sinker. 

I think that's enough preamble for now. Here's the standard timeline that every wedding uses so you can plan your wedding on YOUR terms. 

We'll need to start with your ceremony time. From there, the rest of the wedding timeline planning is just working backwards! I'm going to build this timeline based on a ceremony time of 4pm (which is a pretty common time here in Colorado). 

2:00pm  Photography start time

I like having about two hours prior to the ceremony, and arriving just as hair/makeup is finishing up.

2:30PM Separate Wedding Party Photos

If you aren't seeing each other before the ceremony, we'll work with one side of the wedding party first, then the other side. It takes 20-30 minutes for these :)

3:45pm Staging for Ceremony

4:00PM Ceremony

4:45PM Cocktail Hour

Also time for full wedding party photos, family photos, and photos of you guys together.

5:45PM Guests asked to be seated for dinner

6:00PM Announcement (if applicable) and the start of dinner

7:00PM Toasts 

They're usually around 20 minutes unless you have a very verbose family member, haha.

7:20PM Parent Dances (if applicable)

7:30PM Couple's First Dance

7:35PM Cake Cutting

7:45PM Dance floor opens!!

I like staying for about an hour after the dancing starts. After that things tend to be a little repetetive. BUT, if you're having a crazy send-off (sparklers, anyone?) you better keep us around!

11:00PM Grand Exit (if applicable)/The Party Ends

I hope that all helps you guys with how to plan a wedding timeline! I'd love to hear what you think of this post and if it helped you out. 

 

Not booked with me, but want to chat after reading this post? Click below!!

 

//Products// The Americano Album

album spotlight: the americano

Americano-001_WEB.jpg

I'm so excited to share some photos of one of my favorite wedding albums. Today, we're grabbing an Americano (espresso with water added, similar in strength to drip coffee) and taking a peek at this lovely little album with a customized leather cover. I include 20 pages with it standard, but you can always add a few more! This, and the espresso shot are the two albums in the group that don't have photo paper printed pages. That makes them great as a book to write on if you need to (think guestbook for your wedding). 

Take a peek at the detailed photos below! You'll notice (like all my albums) it has a layflat center seams, and pages that lay flat by themselves. The leather cover definitely elevates the look and it feels so soft and silky! The colors from Ali + Kelton's winter wonderland wedding pop beautifully on the crisp matte paper.

Americano-002_WEB.jpg

Thanks for taking a look! Click here if you want to order one of these beauties for your wedding or engagement photos. 

//products// The Espresso Shot Album

album spotlight: the espresso shot

wedding album

The espresso shot is the smallest and most budget-friendly wedding album that I offer. While in a perfect world, I want all of my couples to get a gorgeous leather bound coffee table book, I know it's not always in the cards. That said, I LOVE this album as an engagement session book. The fact that the pages aren't photo paper like some of the higher end albums means that it works great as a guest book for your wedding with some of your favorite photos printed alongside lines for your friends and family to leave you a note! 

Take a peek at the detailed photos below! Even though the pages are thin, you still get the huge bonus of a layflat center seam. That means there's no risk of a photo getting cut off when it overlaps the middle of the book. The cover is the same thickness as the other pages, so it feels more like a paperback novel or thick art magazine than a hardcover book. I like the feel of it though. The paper is smooth, thick, and the photos print on it marvelously. 

wedding albums

Thanks for checking out this album! Let me know if you have questions about it, and click here if you want to reach out and order one for your engagement or wedding photos!