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Kiersten & Brandon - Gathering Place at Darlington Lake Wedding Photos {Pittsburgh Wedding Photo

Kiersten and Brandon's wedding at the Gathering Place at Darlington Lake was definitely one of my top most fun weddings of this year! The day was literally so laid back and full of humor, these people seriously made me feel like I wasn't working at all. The day started off early at the log cabin home on the property where I met Kiersten and the girls for some getting ready shots. For how many times I have been to Darlington Lake, I have never been inside of the cabin home, so I was excited to be able to head inside of it to see the space-- was I in for a surprise! The home was absolutely stunning with a huge two story open living room with a fireplace and the upstairs had bedrooms on either side of the house, with an open cross walk style hallway to connect the spaces. I found an open room for Kiersten to get ready in and to photograph her detail shots of her dress and accessories. I loved the brightness and coziness of the room, as it also had plenty of rustic and fall-like features about it. While it was the final days of Summer, Kiersten wanted to accentuate the Fall colors and have a warm Fall wedding. She definitely pulled it off with the venue choice, the maroon and grey outfit choices for the bridal party and the red/copper decor at the reception!

Once Kiersten was dressed, with the assistance of her mother, I think I captured one of my most favorite photos to date-- the natural reaction of her mother as she sees her daughter all dressed and ready to go, for the first time. The raw emotion is something I definitely try to capture throughout the day, and being a mother myself, it hit me hard that I'll be in that spot one day too. While most brides try to have a reveal for their fathers by making them come into the room after they're already prepared, I personally love the connection between a mother and daughter more. I feel as though mothers don't get enough credit throughout a wedding day, so the little things like this, really are sentimental and warm for me.

After capturing Kiersten with each of her bridesmaids and a few group shots in front of the cabin, I went to check up on the guys and grab the final touches of them getting ready under the pavilion. I'm always nervous walking into a large group of guys, because you never can tell what the mood is going to be like, but Brandon and the rest of the guys were nothing but wonderful and wholesome to work with! We had so much fun getting their individuals done (I saved more of the crazy antic filled ones for their own personal gallery) and afterwards, we did a few group shots (pun intended) by the water and in the parking lot (don't worry, no one was drinking/driving). The guys also made it a point to get the detail of their matching socks-- which you could see he REALLY liked his socks as he stopped mid aisle while walking down for the ceremony to show them off...

Next came for the first look in front of the cabin at Darlington Lake. The two started off nervous and then Brandon's shenanigans broke the nerves as he started making jokes as Kiersten was walking towards him (or as he stuck his butt out to her). Regardless, this was quite the fun first look! The two were so happy to see one another and it made for some pretty awesome portraits afterwards. Their wedding photos were all around the exterior of the log cabin at the Gathering Place at Darlington Lake! It's quite the gorgeous spot.

The sun came back out for the outdoor ceremony along the lake. Guests enjoyed this short and sweet ceremony from start to finish. Like I mentioned before, Brandon made quite the entrance with his short pause to "tie his shoe" aka show off his socks in the middle of the aisle once they entered (which, the guys entered in with a round of applause). Everyone was laughing and enjoying theirselves! Then the girls made their way to the front in a more traditional fashion. Next up was Kiersten! She did half of the walk with her step-father and the second half was with her father. This right here. This. This is everything. To see two men take care of their daughter in the way that they did was everything. I'm not going to lie; I cried. It was beautiful! Once the ceremony was in full swing, the two made for a fun time as they made their guests laugh with their antics throughout their vows (did you see the pinky promise and butt bump??). The ceremony ended with their kiss and off they went to celebrate!

The reception was bumping throughout the night! Brandon loves to shake his groove thing and was doing so all evening. After the toasts and parent dances (which Kiersten danced with her dad, mom and her step dad!), we snuck away to the other side of the lake for a few minutes to get some sunset photos, and OMG am I glad we did at that time!! Their sunset photos are some of my favorite! The golden glow against the lake and these two was nothing but a dream! Everything was so perfect throughout the whole day that I'm so glad that I was there to capture it all! Congrats to these two and their families!!

Photographer: Lovas Photography (Rachel)

Menswear: Men's Wearhouse

Donuts: Giant Eagle

Hair: Brittany Horrell & Danielle Boyles

Transportation: W.L. Roenigk

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