#HQWedding in Wilmington, DE
J&J Studios had the ultimate privilege of being the wedding photographer for Dana and Sean. As I go through their images from their special day, I can’t help to get goosebumps. It was simply awesome to witness two extraordinary people let their love for each other shine the entire day.
Dana and Sean met on social media in 2009, thanks to Facebook! Sean wanted to get to know Dana more, so he made a move (on one of Dana’s posts, of course!). The two met up for a swim date, and they became inseparable ever since.
Fall In Love
One beautiful day in Delaware, Sean and Dana took a trip to a pumpkin patch. While they were searching for the perfect pumpkin, Sean quickly wrote ‘Marry Me‘ on one and put the ring on it. As Dana came over to see if he found any good ones yet, he asked, “Which pumpkin do you like best?” Guess what? Surprise! Sean got down on one knee, and the rest is history. It was an autumn outing they remember for the rest of their lives.
COVID-19’s Unwanted Arrival
Since the proposal, the two have planned the perfect wedding. Everything was going smoothly until March of this year when COVID-19 hit. A global pandemic can definitely change things. Being essential workers, Dana and Sean had little to no time to prepare for their big day. On top of that, Dana was a student during the summer semester. Their days consisted of sleep, work, and school. There were hard times that came, and they honestly considered postponing.
Not All Heroes Wear Capes
But, a ray of hope came along. Luckily, a woman named Leanne from Luxe & Lovely Events, reached out to them and asked if they needed help getting everything ready. She was the perfect coordinator for them, and the three had an instant bond. In July, they decided they would get married on the day they planned, and there was nothing that would stop them. She took over the wedding planning from there, and let’s just say, it was a wedding I will never forget. The superwoman handled the signage, decor, florals, centerpieces, hotel boxes – I mean just about everything. To social distance and be as safe as possible, they decided on having an outdoor ceremony that included plenty of room.
The Big Day
It was a great time capturing the wedding parties get ready at the Hilton Wilmington/Christiana. It was honestly like spa day for Dana and Sean! Face masks, undereye patches, hair trims – you name it. There’s no better feeling than looking and feeling your best on your wedding day. Both of them cleaned up nicely and looked fantastic.
I really wanted to add some of these (funny) shots of Dana with his wedding anxiety going. 🙂 He was fine, of course. No wet feet here, whatsoever. And here’s one of Sean vaping it up!
We traveled over to a beautiful gem nestled in Wilmington, Delaware, called The Farmhouse. The seating outside consisted of classic white chairs, which paired perfectly against the dark green grass. Some of the seats in the front were reserved for those in Heaven. It’s always a bittersweet moment seeing those who couldn’t be there. And the chairs that run parallel with the aisle, those were decorated with sunflowers.
Dana and Sean were inspired to come up with their own theme, so they came up with ‘HQ Wedding’ (#HQWedding)! – sort of like ‘GQ men’s style’. H is the first letter of Dana’s last name, and Q is the first letter of Sean’s last name. Always cool to see how people come up with theirs!
We asked the sweet couple about The Farmhouse and why they chose it:
“Sean and I looked at a few venues, and then our friends referred us to The Farmhouse and instantly fell in love with the grounds of The Farmhouse. We first met with Anna and she was amazing! She made us feel very welcomed and was always there for us every step of the way. She accommodated all of our wants to make our special day spectacular.”
The First Look
Before the ceremony, I photographed their first look. This is always a tender and intimate moment between a couple. It was a touching moment to witness. When we asked Dana what one of his favorite moments from their wedding day, it was this:
Dana – “When I was walking up to Sean during our first look. His back was towards me, but I could see him smiling ear to ear. It gave me butterflies. He turned around to see me and the love in his eyes was unforgettable.”
During their ceremony, they decided to do the unity candles. Both of their mothers came forward to light a candle, and then both Dana and Sean took the candles and lit another candle using those two. This is a sweet symbolization of two souls and two families coming together.
The grooms decided to write their own personal vows and brought smiles across each other’s faces. Their ceremony was beautiful and surrounded by those they love.
After the ceremony, we stayed outside a bit longer for more portraits of them with their wedding party. Oh, peep those snazzy Christian Louboutin red bottom wedding shoes. They killed it. Dana’s vest was custom made: black in the front, red on the back. The ladies wore red dresses and the gentlemen wore red bowties to match.
A Slice Of Heaven
One of the prettiest cakes I have ever seen in my life was theirs. Thoughtfully created by Dan Langan at Baked By Dan, or more famously known from The Food Network, this was a true masterpiece – and delicious, too!
Check THIS out…
Of course, the cake was decorated in red roses and sunflowers – the flowers that were part of the wedding theme. Their friends designed and built them a custom champagne wall. Pretty cool, huh?
Every piece of decoration was wonderful. From the tables with black plates and gold napkins to their beautiful sunflower guest log, there wasn’t one single detail left out.
Did you know they are huge fans of Taylor Swift? But then again, who isn’t?!
Dance Into Forever
Let me just say this: I have never laughed so much like I did during their reception, ever! It was a blast. You can tell they are the life of any party and that they are surrounded by fun-loving friends and family. From the twerking to the lap dances, it was so funny to see everyone let loose and get jiggy with it. They literally danced the night away!
Some of Sean’s favorite memories from the day included seeing Dana walk down the aisle with his mom. A moment he won’t ever forget. Another favorite was when the two of them had their mother/son dances during the reception. They all danced together for the first time as a family!
Forever & Beyond
During the reception, we stepped back outside for more portraits of Dana and Sean. When the night came to an end, wedding guests sent the newlyweds off with a sparkler exit. We are so honored to have captured such a wonderful day for these two. This is a wedding I won’t ever forget. Thank you both for including J&J Studios on your special day. We wish you a lifetime of joy and happiness!
THE AMAZING VENDORS!
Sean & Dana – “We were blessed with great vendors. Every single one of them were very accommodating and willing to be flexible with anything related to COVID-19. We couldn’t of asked for better vendors!”
Here’s a special thanks to everyone who helped make the perfect wedding! We want to make sure we give a shoutout to everyone who went above and beyond.
The beautiful hotel where everyone stayed and got ready.
Hair and Makeup
The mastermind behind the beauty and styling!
Stunning sunflowers and roses creations.
The venue itself catered amazing cuisine!
Delectable mini creme brulee & more!
Baked By Dan – Dan Langan: @bakedbydan
They recreated their invitation into a memorable glass piece!
Custom Masks by KP’s Craft Room – Dana Rappa
Keeping everyone safe and stylish!
The perfect place to find your dream tux.
She did a fantastic job officiating two beautiful souls.
Sisters Jewelry of Mullica Hill – Donna
Exquisitely designed wedding rings!
First Generation Sound Production – Sean Lee
He knows exactly how to turn it up a notch and get people moving!
The Farmhouse – Anna
Her help with coordinating this event was so helpful. The venue was beautiful, inside and out!
She is a workhorse! Everything went smoothly, thanks to her.
Classic shoes with fiery red bottoms!
Get In Touch
So you have a date set for your wedding. But do you have a wedding photographer who will capture those important moments during your day? Look no further! Click here to find out more information!