toms river wedding photography

Carriage House Wedding Photographer | Galloway, New Jersey

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I love working with people like Renata and Mark. I knew that any couple who would have a pie bar at their wedding (obvs) and pork roll sandwiches (How very New Jersey of them!) as parting gifts, would be an absolute joy to work with. 

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I met them for breakfast for our consultation, where I discovered how well their personalities and sense of humor meshed together. They were a couple destined for each other. I was so comfortable with them that I could not wait for their wedding day. 

 

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Renata was every bit as breathtaking and beautiful on their long awaited day. She looked radiant as ever in her beautiful gown and pearl encrusted Converse. I loved that we did a first look before the ceremony, it was so worth it to capture Mark's face as he saw his future wife on their wedding day. 

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Renata and Mark's wedding took place at the Carriage House, and was one of the most beautiful winter weddings I've had the pleasure of shooting. Despite the cold month, everything about the wedding was warm and cozy. There is a kind of old world charm there that makes it such a pretty place to be for an event as intimate as a wedding. 

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Many of the decorations were made by Gammy, Renata's grandmother! She even knitted shrugs for the bridal party to wear. Their families and guests were so welcoming and friendly - Gammy even had me sit and eat pie with her. 

The ceremony made me cry like a baby, of course! Renata shared a dance with not only Gammy, but with her new father-in-law. It was so sweet to witness the new bonds forming between these two families. 

 

 

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And of course the most fun married couple would have a football tossed instead of the garter ... Classic! 

And of course the most fun married couple would have a football tossed instead of the garter ... Classic! 

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Venue: The Carriage House

Hair: Lindsey Herring - MLP Dream Team Preferred Vendor

Make Up: Make Up By Jenielle

Florist: Anastasia Salerno

Shoes: Converse

Cake: Luscious & Sweet Gourmet Bakery

 

Katie & Jose | New Jersey Engagement

I met Katie at Whipped Creperie in Downtown Red Bank. She was looking for a photographer for her and her fiancé, Jose's October wedding. [Which I'm REALLY excited for, by the way!] Katie and I got along really well, and I loved [and still do love!] how important photography for her wedding is to her. Katie really wanted to do an engagement session so her and Jose could get comfortable with me and being in front of the camera. A lot of times couples are pretty nervous because it isn't every day that the attention is on them and a camera is glued to them all day. I feel like engagement sessions can be important in getting yourself comfortable with your photographer, and so did Katie.

I met Katie & Jose at their apartment in Red Bank. It was important to get photos at a few different locations, being that certain places had special meeting to them.

Now, it was HOT. Really hot. Katie & Jose were troopers! I also opted for us to walk to downtown, which they were all about! One of the first places they wanted photos by was where Broadway Grill used to be, which is now Toki. We also walked down Broad St and down to Marine Park, which is beautiful. Lastly, we took photos at their apartment & captured them in the polos they wore for work at Broadway Grill! I thought that personal touch was so meaningful and fun to add in to their engagement photos.

Here's a few we took that day...Enjoy!

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Hope you enjoyed them! Katie & Jose, I cannot wait for your wedding at Branches in October!

Rock Island Lake Club Wedding Photographer | Sparta, NJ

I met Ashley last year when she inquired with me about wedding photography. I had photographed her friend's wedding a few months prior. The minute I met Ashley I could tell that this wedding was going to be amazing. She radiated happiness, she was a giggly woman with a bubbly personality. I couldn't wait for her wedding!

Ashley & Angelo held their wedding on April 22nd, 2016 at Rock Island Lake Club, a stunning venue in Sparta, NJ that sits on a lake with beautiful views. I'm so grateful Ashley & Angelo decided to have me be their photographer. I felt like I had made a friend with Ashley, she is such an inviting person. Made me feel like I had known her for years. I love when I can relax and be myself with couples, and luckily I've been blessed with so many couples that I just click with. 

So I don't keep rambling about how amazing Ashley & Angelo are together, check out these awesome photos we captured throughout the day!

 

Thank you so much, Ashley & Angelo! You two will always have a special place in my heart. I wish you both nothing but happiness and lots of giggles!

Venue: Rock Island Lake Club

Cake: Palermo's Bakery

Florist: Gala Florist

DJ: Platinum Entertainment

Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero

Desiree Dean Designs Promotional Shoot: March 11th, 2016

Desiree Dean, owner of Desiree Dean Designs, hired me to take her promotional photos for her website and other marketing materials for her business. Desiree is a brilliant florist and is my go to when it comes to incorporating florals in any of my shoots. From bouquets to centerpieces and beautifully constructed succulent and floral crowns, necklaces and bracelets. Every time I order something from Desiree Dean Designs, I'm beyond stunned.

We had decided to hold the shoot at Cattus Island Park in Toms River, New Jersey. It's an amazing park with trails, bodies of water and hidden areas perfect for photography. As soon as Desiree arrived, she was in heaven! Desiree is a dog lover and while we walked through Cattus Island Park, her eyes instantly lit up at the sight of the multiple dogs being walked around by their owners. We wound up settling at a rustic picnic table where Desiree set up a sweet tea party setting complete with her custom floral arrangements. Her attention to detail was an instant reminder of the reasons why I adore her. The arrangements photographed lovely and simply showed off Desiree's eye for the art of florals.

The day of the shoot, Desiree went all out. She had hired a clothing, hair and makeup stylist and everything just worked! Desiree was so comfortable in her element; setting up for her editorial shots, the pops of colors that highlighted her face with her outfit, the warmth of the mock table setting had made the experience so sweet.

It was a delight to photograph Desiree. Desiree wasn't just a client. She's more than a client, she's my friend. A fellow female business owner, a collaborator. A talented florist that goes beyond your typical arrangements, she's an artist; a floral visionary.

{Links below for venue & vendor information}

Desiree Dean Designs

Hair by: Elan Studios

Makeup by: Blush by Elan

Location: Cattus Island Park

Alexandra & Andrew Jacoby: January 2nd, 2016

Alex and Andrew are such an amazing couple. Alex and I have been best friends for years, after high school. She is extremely bright, witty and so much fun to be around. Her husband Andrew is in the Navy and while he was stationed in Hawaii, Alex had planned their entire wedding in mere months.

It was an obvious cold day, but Alex and Andrew's love warmed up the day in its entirety. They both got ready at Alex's grandmothers' home and the two shared their "first look" there, as well. Both of their faces were priceless upon seeing one another for the first time, like I always say in my blogs, those are the moments I live for. To capture their "forever" in a photograph, it's elating.

I will never forget the sky on Alex and Andrew's day. It was the perfect hue of pinks and blues, they really couldn't get any luckier as far as beautiful days were concerned. The sky that surrounded them and their intimate, romantic ceremony was perfection.

Alex and Andrew's ceremony and reception were held with their closest family and friends present at a lovely location called Seabra's Armory in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. Alex's dress was stunning, a Lazaro gown, it hugged her beautifully and the fur shrug was the perfect added winter touch. Her hair and makeup held a very old Hollywood look that complimented both her down and Andrew's uniform. It truly felt like the two of them were in a film, they were breathtaking.

There reception was just as lovely and classic. An adorable cupcake tower, friends and family dancing the night away, a candy car and a beautiful "In Memoriam" table for their loved ones who could not be present for their special day. Every bit of detail was just as intimate and romantic as the wedding itself. Just as romantic as their love, as intimate as their relationship.

I really did enjoy photographing Alex and Andrew's wedding, not only because of how amazing their wedding was, but because of the history I have with Alex. To witness your friendship grow, your friend grow, your friend get married and to have the honor of capturing all of that from behind a lens; makes my heart grow.

Here's to forever Alexandra & Andrew,

Meghan Leigh

{Links below for venue & vendor information}

Venue: Seabra's Armory

Bride's gown: Lazaro

 

Ang & Chris Mini Couple Session: November 29th, 2015

Ang and Chris are just the sweetest couple. They hired me for a Mini Couple Session, just because; which I absolutely loved! I feel that couples only feel that they only should hire a photographer for their engagement and wedding, but that's not the case! Sometimes, you just want to have a little photo session for yourself to show off your love for one another and that is just as beautiful. And let me tell you something about Ang and Chris...they are so very much in love. There is a connection between the two of them, a bond, a shared adoration. They're the couple that are best friends, too. You can tell by their smiles, how they looked at one another, their body language. I loved photographing them.

We decided to have their couple shoot at Allaire State Park in Farmingdale, New Jersey. Allaire is a beautiful park, it was once a 19th century iron making town; so there are plenty of places to photograph. Historical homes, churches, etc. it has to be one of my favorite places in New Jersey to hold a photo shoot.

Ang, Chris and I got along instantly. As soon as we met our energies just clicked and it made for a wonderful day and shooting environment. As I photographed their love, we talked about Chris being in the U.S. Air Force and how they met. I still think back on this day and remember how much fun it was, how calm it was and how cute they were.

Every couple is different. Every couple has their own style, their own way of showing what they mean to each other, their own way of how they carry themselves. Ang and Chris have this warmth about them; individually and as a couple and I love to photograph such spirit. I truly hope I get to work with them again, one day.

Here's to forever Ang & Chris,

Meghan Leigh

Annie & Javier Morales: October 10th, 2015

Annie & Javier. These two are a match made in heaven. Now...Annie & Javier hadn't started dating right away, but...what they have now was right in front of them all along. They were best friends for 8 YEARS before they started dating. Since then, they have been inseparable. They balance each other out perfectly. It's a relationship to truly look up to. Their wedding was a beautiful autumn themed, DIY wedding. Annie had every detail planned, and she did not miss a thing!

Annie had gotten sick before her wedding day - pneumonia! Can I just say that Annie is the strongest woman I've had the pleasure of meeting? If she hadn't told me she was sick, I would have never known! She has a bubbly, fun, out-going personality. I felt like I had known her forever, and surprisingly - her wedding day was the first day we had actually met! We became friends from that moment!

Just how meticulous was Annie in planning her and Javier's big day? How can someone cover up pneumonia? Let me show you. Annie was GLOWING!

 

Even the guys looked awesome! I mean, check out those cuff links! Seriously!? I love when thought gets put into details like cuff links, it isn't something that gets thought about often. When it does, though....Really awesome things can occur. IE: Superhero cuff links on a wedding day.

Now on to the ceremony & reception...

Annie & Javier chose to have their wedding at the beautiful Royce Brook Golf Club in Hillsborough, New Jersey.

For their First Look, I drove Annie in a golf cart (my first time driving one ;]) to a bridge where she and Javier saw each other for the first time that day. It was a beautiful moment. I always love first looks. I'm so glad Annie trusted me driving her in her beautiful dress in a golf cart, it was not a short drive. =D Also check out that beautiful brooch bouquet Annie is holding. Another awesome DIY detail.

For the reception, it was held under a big, white tent. It was beautiful. Surrounded with colors of autumn. There was a cigar bar, a candy bar, two cakes!!!! (TWO!) Guests were dancing the night away. I won't ever forget Javier's face when he saw his Mario Groom's cake. It was seriously awesome, and such a thoughtful surprise! The amazing thought that Annie had put into this wedding, down to every last detail is something to admire. The little touches here and there, I could hardly keep up. Everytime I turned around I was noticing something else! She even had the cutest (I say cutest in the sense that this was really cute, considering I am one of those people that are terrified of creepy crawly things) spider brooch in her hair! Another fall Halloween element she added. She had personalized the wedding to make it completely her own, and she did it to make her and Javier happy. It was their day. That is something that everyone should admire. I know I do.

 

Thank you so much for allowing me to be a part of your big day, Annie & Javier! I could not have been more honored to photograph such an amazing event!

 

Vendor Details

Venue: Royce Brook Golf Club

Hair: Lake Nelson Beauty Shop

Wedding Dress *Black lace & belt added by Annie to customize*: Demetrios Bridal Salon

Men's Tuxes: Men's Wearhouse

Make-Up: Perfect Bridals By Christina