Gabi and John’s The Somerset Palace Wedding

December winter weddings have a certain allure to them. First of, being in New Jersey you don’t know if it’s going to be 60 degrees, 20 degrees, sunny or snowing. Gabi and John’s engagement session was taken in 30-degree weather, so they’re no stranger to taking photos in the cold. For Gabi and John’s The Somerset Palace wedding, we got snow! As a photographer, shooting in the snow is a welcomed challenge. You have to work fast, smart and efficiently while remaining creative.

The Somerset Palace is located about ten miles west of New York City. With it’s grand open space, columns and grandiose atmosphere, it’s no wonder it’s New Jersey’s ninth-highest ranked wedding venue.


Getting Ready

While Gabi and her girls drank mimosas,  John and his guys drank beer. While Gabi and her girls ran around getting make up, hair and taking selfies, John and his boys drank beer. While Gabi and her girls ooh and ahh’d as Gabi walked down the stairs, John and his boys…drank beer.

Looking for a spot for bride portraits is one of my main priorities when I walk into bride prep. I love using shadows and textures in my photos, and using window light helps me achieve this look. Luckily for me, Gabi’s parent’s house has a gorgeous space in their bedroom that allowed me to control the window light coming into the room. This allowed me to create cool portraits for Gabi.

Once everyone was done, we made our way to the church.


It’s Snowing!

As Gabi walked down the aisle, hundreds of adoring eyes watched every step. None more adoring than John’s eyes though. The look on his face as she walked down the aisle was priceless! As the ceremony progressed, the guests listened to bible verses, advice on love all the while anticipating the first kiss. When the moment finally came, it was a beautiful moment for two people in love! As the ceremony concluded, guests discovered it started snowing outside, adding to the winter-themed wedding atmosphere!

It’s Still Snowing

Forecasters didn’t anticipate howe much snow actually came down! Luckily, The Somerset Palace staff was on top of it. They shoveled the snow off an area that allowed us to use an outdoor space for bridal party photos. I had set up four flashes to add dramatic light, color and depth to the photos. Once done with the bridal party photos, I walked Gabi and John around the building, using different areas as backdrops. I wanted to showcase the snow as an element to their photos, as it was a big part of what made their day so unique. Years from now, I can imagine them telling stories of how it snowed on their wedding day! These happen to be some of my favorite photos of the year!

Duck, Duck, Goose

I’ve seen some pretty cool bridal party entrances, but I’ve never seen a bridal party come in, form a circle and play a quick game of duck, duck goose! As their game wrapped up, Gabi and John made their way down the grand staircase, to the dance floor and danced their first dance and husband and wife. They started to dance, and snow fell on the dance floor! It was very cool too capture!!!

Laughter, dancing, great food and awesome music from the Seth Tieger Band filled the night. One of John’s groomsmen even got up and sang Chicken Fried by the Zac Brown Band! Everyone, including me, had a great time celebrating the night away!

JWP wishes Gabi and John a lifetime of cold beers on a Friday night, a pair of jeans that fit just right, and the radiooooo up!