milwaukee wedding

Schlitz Audubon Engagement Session

Madelyn and Matt braved the cold and gave us the all the cuteness at their engagement session last week! We can’t wait to shoot their wedding at Schlitz Audubon in May, and love that they chose the same location in a different season for photos. We are huge fans of the Audubon, and all they contribute to the north shore community. We’ve shot their fundraising gala two years in a row now! If you’ve never been - check it out!

Milwaukee Winter Elopement - Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum

OOPS I haven’t blogged since August and that wedding was from April - eeeek!!!

Let’s start at the end, shall we? This past weekend we finished out our FIRST ever wedding season with an incredible elopement at Villa Terrace. I’m not sure if it fits the literal definition of elopement….but what I do know is that it was short and sweet and PERFECTION.

We first met Alejandro back in July. He inquired about us photographing his surprise proposal on the roof of Hotel Metro, and I was like YUP. Alejandro is an international student here from Mexico, studying medicine at MCW, where he met the love of his life, Janna. His proposal was elaborately planned - think rose petals, family secretly watching, and a frickin MARIACHI BAND! You guys!! As Janna was walking down he serenaded her as they played. HEART MELT.

So, needless to say, she said yes, and we have been peeing our pants excited about their big day ever since.

While Alejandro got ready with his parents downstairs, Janna and her friends were upstairs making sure everything was in place. With a wedding planned for next year in Cancun, they didn’t have an ‘official’ bridal party at this ceremony, but Janna took the opportunity to ask her closest friends and sisters if they’d be her bridesmaids in Mexico next year. Of course they said yes!

What I especially loved about their day, was the importance they put on photos. Of course, everyone wants great photos, but often it’s a struggle to have ample time for magic makin’ on such a busy day. Before the ceremony, Janna and I ran around the museum like kids in a candy shop, finding light and ideas everywhere we looked. FInally, these sweet peas had a first touch, peppered with so many ‘I love you’s and ‘I can’t wait to marry you’s. SWOON!

Their short and sweet ceremony was followed by a champagne toast on the deck and desserts, while we ran away and snuck in some more photos.

Julia & Jeff

Julia and Jeff kicked off our wedding season on April 7th, and it was an incredible way to start the year! We had home field advantage, with their ceremony at the beautiful Old St Mary's just blocks from our apartment, and reception at the Milwaukee Athletic Club. 


We started the day poppin' bottles on the roof (one of many bottle pops of the day!), then Julia's bridesmaids looked on while she had an emotional first look with her father. First looks with dads are so special; if you've been thinking about doing one, DO IT! 


Guys.....can we talk about Julia's dress for a minute?! That train! That lace! Julia kept the rest of the details simple (check out those flowers from Milwaukee Flower Co!) and kept her dramatic Kitty Chen dress as the focal point. 

Julia and Jeff had a traditional ceremony in the gorgeous Old St Mary's, where they made promises to each other, and their future family. And of course, they sealed the deal with their classic dip! These two came with more dips than a Super Bowl Party, ya'll. Yeah I said it, I went there! 

We braved the cold (well, Julia did, the rest of us could take breaks in coats) and headed to the Milwaukee Art Museum, and Lake Shore State Park for photos.

While everyone was finishing up cocktail hour, I snuck Julia and Jeff up to the roof for some time with just the two of them.

When Brian and I got married I was in such a tizzy trying to get everything ready, that when we arrived at our venue I even said to Brian "I don't even think I'm going to cry!" because of how crazy the day was. Yeah, if you know me, you know how ridiculous that statement is. Our photographer made everyone else go away, got us all quiet and close and snuggly, and then it hit me, and I cried for like an hour straight. MY POINT is that it is essential to spend some time with just your lover on your day. Not just time taking photos while your family watches, but some intimate, quiet time to reflect on everything. And just to stare at that beautiful face that loves you back. And maybe pop some more bottles, like Julia and Jeff. 

While we waited for dinner and dancing, we all filled out a card for the Hatkes to read on a future anniversary. How cute is that!? 

The night ended with twirls, more dips, and so many well wishes to Julia and Jeff as they begin their lives together, and make their big move to Australia. What a night!