Mary Alice and I met and became best friends in the most unexpected place….Paris, France. We were in 6th grade when both of our families moved to Paris. She came from Connecticut and I came from Georgia. We attended the American School of Paris and met many more students from all over the world. It was one of the best experiences of my life and I met some of the most wonderful people, like Mary Alice, who I still keep in touch with.
When Mary Alice called to tell me she was engaged, I was thrilled for her and also so excited to see her (after almost ten years) see her family and meet this man she would spend the rest of her life with!
So, David and I jetted off to Virginia!
The wedding reception took place on her parent’s farm in Virginia, where I had visited once before in college. The ceremony took place on her Aunt and Uncle’s property along the bay. It was such a beautiful backdrop. The ceremony location and reception location were two different cultures that meshed so well together. It was the perfect combination of Machipongo, Virginia’s culture. If you aren’t familiar, Machipongo has water on both sides as it sits on the other side of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge (if you’re coming from Virginia Beach). The drive over is absolutely beautiful as you cross the bridge over the water and through the tunnels underwater.
Machipongo’s culture was so tastefully tied into Mary Alice and Pat’s wedding that I’m not even sure my words will do it justice. The pictures will do a better job! Since Machipongo sits along the water the cuisine you will find yourself enjoying is seafood. Oysters, clams….you name it! In fact, David and I enjoyed a dinner along the water our first night in town. And a pina colada for me of course! I used this scenery in Mary Alice and Pat’s details using seashells nearby to photograph their rings. Mary Alice wore a necklace that her dad had given her when she was 16 years old. It’s a beautiful multicolored fish dangling by a hook. I thought that was really special and unique.
Once the wedding moved to the farm for cocktail hour and the reception, I was blown away by so many things. First, the table name cards were actual oyster shells, the tablecloths were blue and white checkered patterns, her bouquets were sunflowers and the food came directly from the farm and was prepared locally. Each worker was a friend of the family and you could tell that meant a lot to Mary Alice’s parents. There were even turkeys hanging out nearby!
Mary Alice and Pat’s wedding had so much love poured into it and it was, in every way, a family event with nothing but friends and family helping, planning, and pouring their hearts into this wedding.
And her groom…..every glance, every hug, every kiss, every smile, that he gave his bride, was filled with so much love that you could tell how much he ADORES her and will always take care of her. During their couple portraits on the pier, they got SO lost in each other that I felt as if I was interrupting if I were to say anything. It was so perfect. Could not be happier for my friend.
Thank you so much to everyone involved that let David and I be a part of this special day!
Associate Photographer: David Byrd
A few personal photos from the trip and a walk down memory lane 🙂
Abby Byrd is a wedding and portrait photographer based out of Atlanta specializing in joyful film photography