• Joe + Emily | Part 1

I don’t even know how to begin this post…. because it’s the most important wedding that I have ever blogged. Today I’m sharing the first half of my sister’s wedding day. It seems surreal just to type that out. I mentioned in my toast that even though weddings are our LIFE, this day was so different from any other. It changes everything when you’re watching your dad walk down the aisle with your baby sister on his arm. It changes everything when you’re the one helping the bride into her dress and holding her train as she walks to her first look. My eyes are still puffy from all of the happy tears that were shed on Friday! I went through so many different emotions on Joe and Emy’s wedding day…. happy, sentimental, photographer-mode, overwhelmed, anxious, thankful, etc. It was a whirlwind!! I had many different roles and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

I absolutely loved being a part of Joe and Emy’s celebration and as I watched the day unfold, I was reminded of just how incredible it is to be a part of a wedding. I was beside Emy for every single part of her wedding day and as a sister and a photographer, there is nothing more special. I’ve seen a lot of weddings…. and so I couldn’t help but want the best of EVERYTHING for my little sister! I wanted her to have a beautiful, private first look that she would remember for a lifetime… I wanted her to feel beautiful in her dress and love her hair and makeup… I wanted them to have a ton of fun portrait locations… I wanted their timeline to be stress-free…. I wanted their love for one another to be captured genuinely… I wanted them to have a perfect ceremony that was filled with worship and praise… lastly, I just wanted them to have the day of their dreams…. and I’m not the bride but judging by how the day went, I’d say they experienced all of those things! It was perfect.. from beginning to end! I have SO many amazing people to thank for all of their hard work and that’s going to be a whole blog post in and of itself! We had such a dream team of vendors and helpers and we can’t thank them enough.

Joe and Emy, I’m kinda at a loss for words right now… (which is very odd for me:). There is so much that I could say in this post to you. As I went through these images and the images coming in Part 2, I found myself randomly tearing up because I’m just so thankful. God has been so incredibly faithful in so many ways. I was thankful for overcast skies and beautiful white balance… and I was thankful for an amazing venue and the sweetest friends that hosted my family on this special occasion… but most of all, I was thankful that my baby sister had found the love of her life… the perfect match. I always prayed for the guy that she would marry as we grew up. I wanted him to love the CRAZY, loud, hilarious Emy and to also love and respect the nurturing, wise, servant-hearted Emy. I wanted him to make her the best version of herself and to push her towards Christ. I also wanted him to be able to make her laugh but to be able to have deep, life-giving conversations with her…… my list was intense! …. And yet Joe fulfills all of those qualities.  It’s just icing on the cake that he has an incredible smile and an amazing family! :)

I mentioned in my toast to the newlyweds that I have always thought that our family was pretty awesome… but last Friday we stepped it up a notch when Joe became a part of it. Joe we are so excited to have you in our family!! You are an answered prayer and such a gift to us. Thank you for loving Emy the way you do. We couldn’t be happier for you guys!!!!

So now that I’ve rambled and rambled… I should probably let you all see the first half of this amazing day!! For those that have asked, I will be doing a post later on about how I managed shooting, singing and being MOH on the wedding day. I’ll also be posting about all of the amazing vendors who went above and beyond to make this shindig a huge success!!

For now, enjoy the first half of Joe and Emily’s wedding day!!! And I just have to say this… I honestly can’t remember who took each image but I just HAVE to thank Jill, Annamarie and Michael for tag-teaming the day with me. I’m just blown away by these images and I’m so thankful for all of your help!!!

I may or may not have bought these shoes for Emy just because I knew they would be beautiful in detail pictures:)

Amanda from Anthomanic blew us away…. in SO many ways! You just wait!!

This was my great aunt Margie’s brooch. I used one on my bouquet when I got married too! She was like our grandma on my dad’s side so it was special to have a piece of her legacy with us as we walked down the aisle!

Some bridesmaids details…

Joe and Emy let me design their invitations… and basically their whole wedding in general:) And I loved it!

I’m still in awe of her bouquet! What a masterpiece!!!

Joe’s aunt monogrammed all of our robes!!! So awesome! 

Big Spring Farm.… oh how we love you.

Morning shenanigans….

The girls!

Love this… so thankful Michael was there to photograph Joe getting ready!

Love this:)

I think Jill took this… and I’m obsessed with it.

Ohhh Emy you’re so beautiful!!!

Love this…

She read her letter from Joe out loud and that’s when the tears started… 

And then Daddy walked in… and there were more tears…

A lot more….

We have the most amazing parents…. loved these sweet moments.

Their first look…. there are just no words.

Michael and I captured the first look together… and I’m so thankful for his angle of Emy:)

Emy, you had to have felt like the most beautiful girl in the world during these moments….

And then they had a chance to pray together…


Love this from Michael’s angle!

These make me so HAPPY!!

I just kept thinking to myself “Oh my gosh, this is my SISTER!! I’m shooting HER wedding pictures!”… so surreal!


A little too much “fake laugh” Katelyn…

Jill thank you for these!!!!


Love you Emy!!!!

Love this!


That is one good looking couple!!!

Part two is coming tomorrow… here’s a sneak peek of what you get to look forward to!!!!!!!

HUGE thanks to the following vendors!! More about the planning process to come! :
DJ | Richard Greene Entertainment
Photographers | Michael, Katelyn, Jill & Annamarie
Videography | Jeremy Mitchell Cinema
Hair and Makeup | FBJ Studios
Coordination | Anna Burke Events
Rentals | Gibson Rentals
Catering | Chef’s Catering
Cake and Cupcakes | Sister Sweets
Venue | Big Spring Farm, Lexington Virginia
Floral Design | Amanda Veronee of Anthomanic
Vintage Rentals | Paisley and Jade
Dress | Bella Rose Richmond, Shout out to Camberley!!:)
Shoes | Jcrew
Bridesmaids Dresses | Adrianne Papell from Nordstroms
Groomsmen | Men’s Wearhouse
Bridesmaid’s Shoe’s | Target (Clips from Esty)
xoxo, Katelyn
69 Comments Weddings
  1. Leanne Wight reply

    These are beautiful! Those first look pictures had me crying like a baby! So sweet. Congratulations to your sister and her husband!

  2. Lacey Rabalais reply

    I think I might have even said it outloud while scrolling through these…”This needs to be a canvas”. But I said it about 50 times. Amazing work. It looks like a fabulous day. Such a blessing for you to capture and for her to have you capture such sweet memories. Great work as always!

  3. Lauren Hooker reply

    Wow! These are stunning. What an absolutely gorgeous couple, venue, wedding party – the list goes on and on! I’m so excited to see more. Thanks for sharing this sweet day with us!

  4. Amanda veronee reply

    Man oh man. Crazy gorgeous! Lots of very sweet moments :) and those flowers, uhhhh! So fun to create for this beautiful day!

  5. Melissa reply

    Good Lord Katelyn – These are incredible! I don’t know how you got through it – congratulations Joe and EmILY!

  6. Erin reply

    Oh my word. This is stunning Katelyn! I teared up a bit reading this and I haven’t even met your sister. I think it’s because I could feel the joy from the day. What a unique blog post from the perspective of the bride’s sister! So happy for your family!

  7. Sarah reply

    oh the tears. I just love the sweet moments you guys captured. absolutely beautiful. and that first look? OH MAN. perfect! I am so happy for your sister and Joe! :)

  8. Ashley Herrinton reply

    Love this SO much! Beautiful details, a lovely bride, and such pure emotion. Great job team!!

  9. Jennifer Krieg reply

    Absolutely gorgeous!! Blown away by these images!! Congrats to your sister!!! GORGEOUS!

  10. Brenda James reply

    Oh, KK, these are awesome! You and your photography “team” captured the day beautifully!

  11. Meredith Sledge reply


  12. Amanda Manupella reply

    GORGEOUS! The first look got me teary eyed!! I think you were completely correct Katelyn she must have felt like the most beautiful girl in the world with his reaction to her!!!

    and those bridesmaid dresses! I MUST HAVE ONE!

  13. Vanessa Chupp reply

    so gorgeous!! Looks like it was such an incredible day for your family!! Can’t wait to see the rest :)

  14. ashley barnett reply

    Yay yay yay!! I’m cracking up because I totally filmed that May calendar too hahaha!

  15. Renee @ savoring life through the lens reply

    Oh my gosh, kaitlyn! I always looooove your pictures!! But these are just amazing and actually brought me to happy tears!! They are just beautiful…I can feel the happy emotion through them all. Those barn pictures…wow!! Your sisters dress looks stunning in there!!! Amazing!! I can’t wait for part 2!! Congrats to your sister!!

  16. Mary Marantz reply

    Ahhh so beautiful you guys! I was tearing up the whole way through! xo

  17. Jill Powers reply

    AND I’m crying!!! That first look is, hands down, the best ever! I LOVE everything about this and even though I was there, I can’t wait for part II!! :) I’m SO happy for you, Joe and Emy! God is good!! xoxo

  18. Katie reynolds reply

    SO SO SO SO SO GORGEOUS!!!! So sad we couldn’t be there! Everything looks perfect! Emy you are such a beautiful bride!!!!

  19. Anna Burke reply

    YESSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!! Can’t wait for tomorrow’s post :) Everything was absolutely stunning and so well thought out (way to go, KK!) – and it was all captured beautifully! A gift Joe and Emy will treasure for MANY years to come :) Love you all!!!!

  20. Val Mitchell reply

    Wow! The whole thing is just STUNNING!!!!

  21. Brittney reply

    Oh Kateyln, these images are beautiful! I can’t even imagine how special this day was for you and your family.

  22. Kristie Bradley reply

    Katelyn, This is an absolutely perfect wedding!! Congratulations to emy and joe and props to you for pulling off so many roles!

  23. Kathryn Grace reply

    Gorgeous, gorgeous!!

  24. Deborah Zoe reply

    We are sitting in the office with our Jaws to the floor:):) BEAUTIFUL!!!

  25. colleen reply

    absolutely amazing!

  26. ashley link reply

    excuse me while i’m just blubbering like a crazy lady at work! haha. gah! i don’t know how you handled this! just thinking about my sisters’ days was making me so emotional! haha.

    so beautiful and such a beautiful gift for her! <3

  27. Valerie Duvick reply

    Wow. Incredible. The colors, the details, the emotions, the fact that you got to play all those roles…..amazing! Can’t wait to hear how you did it!!

  28. Kristina W. reply

    These are so beautiful! Emy is gorgeous in every shot and the wedding colors are so pretty! She and Joe are so handsome together and this wedding makes me so happy! Congratulations to the lucky couple and family!

  29. Fonville reply

    Katelyn these just leave me speechless! Words just aren’t big enough to describe how wonderful these are!

  30. Emy reply

    Oh my goodness gracious KK… This blew me away! Joe and I can’t stop looking at them! Man, you make us look good! ;) we love you so much! Can’t wait to order a bunch of prints and canvases… Our house is gonna be covered in them!!! I LOVE each and every one of them! Thank you so much KK!

  31. Beverly lilly reply

    Emy! Radiant girl- wow! Wow! Wow! you were just so beauitful! It seems like a story book wedding that everyone dreams of having with the love of their life. Congrats!!

  32. Jamie reply

    Most gorgeous wedding photos ever. Ever. Ever!!!!! The end. ;0)

  33. Shannon reply

    It was so hard not to smile from ear to ear at these photos! Not only are they gorgeous, but OH MY, the way Joe looks at her – the way everyone is just beaming at one another, it’s just so sweet! Love! Can’t wait to see part 2!

  34. Sydni Jackson reply

    WOW. Just wow. There is so much LOVE going on – I don’t think any sister has loved another so much! Emily couldn’t be more blessed to have such a caring, generous older sister. Who is PHENOMENALLY talented!! Seriously – these are blowing me away. Most beautiful wedding EVER!

  35. laura beth stricker reply

    I was in awe! Stunning. Emy radiated with pure joy. CAnnot wait for Part Two!

  36. Robyn reply


  37. Carissa Kennedy reply

    OH WOW!!! These photos are gorgeous!!! I don’t even know your sister, but I cried reading this post :) The details, the floral, the emotional moments, the venue – stunning!

  38. Alicia Daw reply

    These are STUNNING! And I totally teared up at the first look images

  39. Kate reply

    WOW. WOW. WOW! I was tearing up at those first look pictures….these are fab, and need to be canvases all over their house ;) one of my favorite posts to date!! Can’t wait to see part II tomorrow!! xoxo

  40. Sarah G reply

    OH MY! I love every single detail of this. I think this is my favorite wedding you have photographed! those florals, oh i cannot wait to see the rest!

  41. Amanda reply

    WOW. WOW WOW WOW!! These are so beautiful and that one B&W Jill took of Emily – I Die. just GORGEOUS. I can’t wait for part 2!!

  42. Lauren Swann reply

    Em, you look absolutely stunning!!!!! Also, that is seriously the best first look ever!!! I teared up a little bit!! So excited for you guys!!! Xoxo!!

  43. Lauren reply

    These blow me away…love the colors, the details, the joy…everything!

  44. Sabrina reply

    Oh my word… you girls (and Michael!) did such an amazing job! I’ve only met your sister once but I cried and then laughed through all of it! So so beautiful!! Congrats to Joe and Emily!!

  45. Kimber Wassenberg reply

    Drop-dead gorgeous and amazing….that’s what everything in this post is! I love everything. Thanks so much for sharing all of these wonderful photos!

  46. Megan reply

    That first look had me in complete tears! What a dream wedding, and we haven’t even seen the whole thing yet. Amazing work!

  47. Jan Beale reply

    Crying again…………

  48. Laura reply

    These are so amazingly gorgeous, Katelyn! Your sister is stunning and has to be dying over these!

  49. Holly reply

    Oh my gosh y’all are beautiful. I can only DREAM of a love like this! :)

  50. Veronica DePrato reply

    This is too much! “Beautiful” doesn’t even cover it!

  51. Carla B. reply

    These pictures are so beautiful. The father/daughter pics are what got me. I can’t pick a favorite picture, can’t wait to see part two. Congrats to the newlyweds and may god bless you with many years of happiness together.

  52. Tangie reply

    Beautiful, beautiful wedding photos! I love the way you adore your sister and prayed for her to receive god’s best! What a wonderful sister you are.

  53. Lanye reply

    Katelyn I seriously teared up while reading this! It reminded me so much of my brothers wedding. For the record, I was a bridesmaid and I cried like a baby all the way down the aisle after the ceremony. Hahaha!

  54. Annamarie reply

    I love this so much!!! It was such an honor to be a part of it! And I’m so happy for Emy and Joe :) :)…Such an amazing couple!! Can’t wait to see part two!!!! Ohhh those flowers were the prettiest thing I’ve ever seen!

  55. Judy reply

    just beautiful!

  56. Antonia reply

    I love your heart in this post…and those flowers. Gorgeous on both parts!

  57. Hollie reply

    This is definitely the most beautiful wedding I’ve ever seen on your blog… and I’ve been following for quite some time! Those first look photos made me cry!

  58. Elizabeth V reply

    This is just dreamy!

  59. jamie delaine reply

    oh wow, katelyn, they are darling. you’re the best.

  60. Ariana – Hey Wedding Lady reply

    Feeling a tiny bit overwhlemed by how gorgeous part 1 is – definitely excited about part 2!

  61. Anna – OMG Yum! reply

    OMG!!! So gorgeous!!!! Love all the details!!! What an amazing day! To be part of the wedding AND photograph her wedding. Wow! :)

  62. Anna Liz reply

    Oh my goodness. That is THE absolute best first look I’ve ever seen! =) So very sweet… can’t believe you tackled photographing the whole day, too!

  63. Krista reply

    I LOVED these. Esp the portraits under that huge beautiful tree! They Are amazing!! Thanks for sharing your gift.

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  65. Mirasol p. lopez reply

    Beautiful and stunning.;)

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  68. Digital Party Pros Photography reply

    oh to have gorgeous venues like that all the time

  69. Lisa reply

    I love the colours of the flowers! So beautiful!

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