I’m a wedding & elopement photographer for laid back couples that value the idea of being married more than just having a party. They want photos that show their true selves and represent their love of nature, and prefer to be more natural than overly posed.
Brittany and Michael’s Sisters Oregon winter wedding was one of the prettiest weddings I’ve had a chance to photograph (or been to for that matter). Perhaps it’s because I absolutely love the snow, but I also think it has a lot to do with the fact that these two are some of the most genuine, kind, and sweet people I know. I really got to know them more at their engagement session in Shevlin Park last fall, which you can read all about here, and I knew we had a great connection! Brittany loves the snow too, and she and Michael were so excited to ring in the New Year with their friends and family at Five Pine Lodge in Sisters. I was really crossing my fingers that good ole’ Mother Nature would deliver, as sometimes it can be dry around here that time of year. But man, did we ever have a winter to remember! And, for me, that memory includes these cuties’ Sisters Oregon winter wedding!
I was a little worried that it was going to be downright blustery for Brittany & Michael’s wedding day, given that it snowed almost every single day that month. However, that New Year’s Eve weekend, the sun decided to make an appearance, making for the most gorgeous winter scene! Driving into Sisters that morning from Bend, I knew it was going to be a beautiful blue sky, Central Oregon day. I showed up to Brittany’s cabin where her best friend, Terry, was doing her hair. Terry isan amazing stylist from her hometown in WA, and it was really special he was doing her hair for her wedding. When her hair was done, Brittany had Christine from Makeup Mafia weddings create a beautiful smoky eye.
The Elda Teresa Lodge at Five Pine is a beautiful wedding venue, especially surrounded by tall pines and tons of snow!
The beautiful natural light in Brittany’s cabin, as well as the amazing blanket of snow outside, was the perfect setting to capture all of the details that go into the day. Brittany’s handmade gown was stunning and her flowers, with white anemone as the focal point of her bouquet, were to die for!
Brittany & Michael wrote handwritten notes to each other to read as they were getting ready, or so Brittany thought. There was a bit of a mix up, and Michael thought they would be reading them together, which they actually did a bit later after their first look. But, with a moment like this, I just couldn’t not share this photo of Brittany’s beautiful reaction to Michael’s words.
As Brittany was getting ready, Michael and his friends were hanging out in his cabin, playing chess and watching a football game.
Brittany is ready to slip into her gorgeous gown! Her sister and girlfriend help her into her dress, while her mom ties the gray sash around her waist. And, before she steps out for her first look with Michael, she pops a bottle of bubbly for a toast with her besties!
The grounds surrounding Five Pine Lodge were blanketed with almost a foot of snow in most spots, creating that perfect snowy scene Brittany so wanted for her wedding to Michael on New Year’s Eve. Michael waited just around the corner from Brittany’s cabin and the venue, excited to see his bride for the first time in her gorgeous gown. My second shooter hung out with Michael as I walked Brittany out to meet him. First looks are one of my favorite parts of the day to photograph, and this is why. Just look at Michael’s smile, grinning ear to ear!
And remember how Brittany read her letter from Michael. It doesn’t even matter, because together, they read them again under the perfect light. My second shooter captured this amazing wide angle shot with the sun flare between the tall pines!
When it’s below freezing outside and you’re wearing formal attire, it can be difficult to try not to look and feel stiff. But thankfully, the warm building was just feet away. Plus, someone had the foresight to bring those little hand warmer pouches, so no one would freeze to death! The light was gorgeous through the pines. Such a beautiful setting for this Sisters Oregon winter wedding!
These cuties headed back to their cabin to warm up and drink some champagne while their guests began to arrive. The ceremony was held inside the Elda Teresa lodge at Five Pine, in front of a roaring fire. It was a heartfelt ceremony, and Brittany’s dad made sure to make everyone laugh. He even had his vintage Rolleiflex camera, which he made sure to use and snap a photo of these two standing up there (he got my seal of approval first).
Beautiful floral arrangements decorate the tables and a cake, featuring a topper that includes their love of cats, along with fun party favors for the New Year’s Eve celebration decorate the room. Guests dine on delicious food prepared by the lodge and listen to toasts given by their family and friends. It’s clear how much these two are loved!
After dinner and toasts, it was time for Brittany & Michael to cut their delicious cake and then get out on the dance floor!
DJ Kurlz kicks it up a notch, bringing guests out of to shake and groove to the tunes. Fun lights spin around the floor as people boogie! Guests also enjoy a photo booth filled with fun props.
I truly had an amazing time photographing Brittany & Michael’s Sisters Oregon winter wedding. They are both amazing people, with wonderful families and I am so happy for them. Truly, you guys rock! Wishing you a lifetime of love and friendship.
It’s also a big honor for me that Brittany & Michael’s wedding was just featured in the Spring/Summer 2017 edition of Wedventure Magazine! So, grab a copy today, sit down with a cup of coffee and enjoy.
Thanks to these amazing vendors who helped pull off such a gorgeous New Year’s Eve celebration.
Bride’s hair: Terry Tisdale Salon
Bride’s makeup and bridesmaids hair & makeup: Makeup Mafia Weddings
Flowers: Summer Robbins Flowers
Venue: Five Pine Lodge
Lighting: O’Brien Events
Entertainment: Flip Flop Sounds
Photo Booth: Flip Flop Sounds
Cake: The Cake Lady
Dress: Lena Medoyeff Studio
Photographer: Erica Swantek Photography
Second Photographer: Gary Calicott Photography
Hello! I’m Erica, a sentimental wedding photographer for free-spirited and natural couples that love celebrating outdoors! I’m based in beautiful Bend, OR but always willing to travel for love. If you are planning a wedding, I’d love to talk to you. I still have a few dates left in 2017 and I’m currently booking for 2018. Contact me today and let’s grab a beer or coffee and get to know each other!