Mavris Arts & Event Center Indianapolis wedding photography
Thankfully I am a photographer as there are weddings where my words can’t begin to describe the beauty and love. Candace and Adjei’s wedding was one such soiree. How the two looked at each other, the happy tears, the joyous family… left me in awe. Thank you Candace and Adjei in having me be your wedding photographer. I am ever so grateful to have had the opportunity to document your heartfelt celebrations.
Q&A with the bride and groom:
Adjei and I knew we wanted to get married downtown. Adjei grew up in the city and also works downtown. I wanted our out of town guests to see downtown Indy. After looking at three amazing downtown venues, we chose the Mavris because we love that our guests would get a chance to view the city’s skyline. We loved that we would get to use all three floors dripping with chandeliers, hard wood floors and exposed brick.
When we went to the Mavris they only had a handful of summer dates left-July 3rd and 4th in particular. At first we were leaning towards the 4th but we knew since we had so many out of town guests we wanted to have a whole weekend of events. So we landed on July 3rd for the wedding, July 4th for the “I Do BBQ” and July 5th for the celebration of blessings in which Adjei and I wore handmade garments from Ghana.
The colors, décor, and theme…
We wanted a very summery and romantic feel. Blush and coral with pops of gold, mint, and navy originally came from an understated Fourth of July color palette. We wanted to candles everywhere to play off of the dark woods. We wanted everything to look unstructured yet very put together. Our theme was a love story theme. Our engagement shoot was at the downtown library so we wanted to have a very understated book/love story theme. Our signage and simple décor spoke to this. We love DIY projects and put a lot of thought into all of the little details:
- gold and coral paper straws
- Love story book programs – designed and assembled by the groom
- framed photos and love story quotes
- books on the table from our personal book collection (we both love to read)
- signature cocktail voted on by the bridal party (Marital Bliss)
- beverage coasters dripped in wedding colors and the “love” theme
- calendar guest book
- basket with flip flops
- advice cards designed by the groom
- cake table and cocktail table design by the bride and groom
Overview of the day…
I woke up to the sound of pitter pattering on the roof and was so worried that the weather wouldn’t hold but by the time I went to my hair appointment the skies were starting to clear. The ladies arrived to the bridal suite at 11:00 where a mimosas bar and cheese platters were set up. Makeup artists began working on all the girls while we sipped champagne, listened to music and laughed about the upcoming day. The girls had beautiful mint and blush getting ready robes and before I knew it, it was time to see Adjei in the garden and walk down the aisle.
The boys were set to arrive at the Man Cave at 1:00. Not sure what time they arrived but it was in time for the I Do’s.
- Seeing Adjei in the Garden during our first look.
- Our Recessional with flags and Kente cloth pocket squares.
- Our First Dance
- My husband’s long-winded speech
- Photo booth action
There are several things that stand out when I reflect upon one the best weekend I’ll ever witness.
For me having a first look was one of the best decisions made during the planning process. For couples who think it will take away from the moment of seeing each other during the ceremony, it did not ruin anything! My stunning wife and I were able to share a private moment that even further solidified what I already knew, Candace is the beautiful one born for me.
My most memorable moment was how Candace and I uniquely blended our shared American and Ghanaian cultures throughout the wedding weekend celebration. I loved that we brought together people from all different parts of our lives.
- The ring pop- he’s so silly!
- All of the crash and booms (really not funny) but I’m telling myself that since we didn’t have fireworks we had to have a little action.
- All of the heckling during after ceremony photos.
During the formal photos, a groomsman was running extremely late. In order to shield the true nature of his whereabouts my best man kept telling me randomly funny answers when I demanded to know why a groomsman was so late. My best man knew that knowing a groomsmen location was second to what was truly important and that was taking time the time to look at my soon to be wife and how grateful I am that she never gave up on me and unabashedly accepts all of me. I also think (now know) that she wasn’t buying the lame excuses, but that endeared her to me even more.
During the ceremony, someone accidentally broke a glass candle holder and even though it came at an awkward moment, it never took away from the beauty before me. I remember holding Candace’s hand even tighter and whispered “It’s ok. Nothing but us matters”.
Overall, I lived through a thousand half-loves which had to be forsaken before one whole heart could be taken home. Candace has become the one I rely upon to care and love me. The weekend had a couple errors, but so is life. Despite life’s miscues, the most important thing is we got married on that day and from here forth, everything we will share that goes right is a bonus and everything else that shall go wrong will be a funny story to tell.
Overall, the day was amazing! Our guests loved the ceremony, food, and we danced until midnight. Adjei and I had so much fun and feel like all of our planning paid off. The two important things throughout our wedding planning were- supporting small businesses (Wild Heart Blooms; The Cake Hole; Tick Tock Media; etc.) and representing both of our cultures. I joked throughout that this was our Big Fat AFRICAN American Wedding. We worked really hard to incorporate elements from Adjei’s Ghanaian culture into our ceremony and reception while still acknowledging my American side. Some of those elements were the Kente cloth pocket squares (groomsmen), dancehall and high life Ghanaian music played during the prelude, recessional and reception, and the Ghanaian light soup.
First Dance Songs:
Adjei and Candace – “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran
There was this song on the radio that I kept hearing that I just fell in love with. Adjei came home one night and said he wanted to play a song that he thought would be nice for our first dance. When he played the song he looked over and saw me belting out the lyrics with my eyes closed. It was the same song that I had fallen in love with.
Candace and Dad (Jeff Ewing) “Unforgettable” by Nat King Cole (Same song he danced with my sister to 12 years ago)
Adjei and Mom (Charlotte Nortey) “Sweet Mother” by Prince Nico Mbarga
Vendors: Wedding dress – Blu by Mori Lee, from Nancy’s Bridal, Florals – Wild Heart Blooms (Amanda Glow), Videographer – Bliss Video Memories, Venue and catering– Mavris Arts and Event Center (Ellie Lowe, Event Coordinator), Bridesmaid dresses – Bella Bridesmaids, Wedding shoes – Badgley Mischka, Pianist –Sharon Johnson, Hair – Chiteca Taylor from Indianapolis Hair Studios, Makeup – Ashley Elizabeth Makeup, Wedding Cake/Cupcakes – Jovanna at The Cake Hole` Shove it in!, Men’s Suits – Men’s Warehouse, Groom’s Suit – Macy’s, Invitations, Programs, etc. – Designed by the Groom, Wedding Bands – Jared’s Galleria of Jewelry, DJ – Tick Tock Media (DJ Metrognome), Wedding Coordinator – Life’s Celebrations (Jean Smith), Photo booth – Grins and Giggles LLC, Photographer: Stacy Able Photography
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Midwest Wedding Photographer based in Indianapolis, Indiana and available for destinations worldwide