8 Favorite Wedding Venues- Let the planning Begin

Laura and Zach In the apple Trees At Quonquont Farm

Laura and Zach In the apple Trees At Quonquont Farm

When I first got engaged two things happened: 1- I would admire my ring finger at every stoplight (like a crazy person) 2- I felt super confident about wedding planning. We got this! No problem! 

But with every relative and co-worker asking for details there was a growing sense of urgency. Where! When! Eeek! I felt like I was just adding, increasing and remembering things the shoulds. Where to start? What type of wedding did we really want? 

In a way, it was like apartment hunting. Picturing a new life— walking to work, different neighborhood, imagining a future Katie…In a word: overwhelming. But once I signed the lease, I felt settled and life started to make sense again. 

I think that’s what happens with wedding planning. Once you finally pick a wedding venue, it's a relief and you can mentally picture the day.

So, a bit of unsolicited advice. Start with the wedding venue (and a rough idea of your guest count) and go from there. 

To help with finding the perfect venue, here are a few of my favorite places I’ve visited over the years as a wedding professional. All are equal parts gorgeous and functional. 

  1. Lyman Estate- Located in Waltham, it’s an short drive from downtown Boston but that’s easy to forget with the sweeping (and quiet) landscape. It offers groom and bridal suites, some of the biggest oak trees ever and a wrap-around porch. For larger groups, you’ll need a tent but it has the space for an indoor cocktail/dessert hour. 
  2. Quonquont Farm- This venue has a special place in my heart being located in Western Massachusetts, near where I grew up. It allows for some super flexibility in terms of ceremony and reception. Your picks include: apple orchard, field, patio and elegant barn. It’s really got it all. The staff is super lovely as well. 
  3. Pierce House- All you need to know: mansion in Lincoln, MA, long manicured lawns, the flexibility to have a tented, lawn or inside function. I love how this venue feels like home for the day.  
  4. Codman House- The highlight is the Italian Garden, perfect for a special, unique ceremony. The Carriage House can host dancing or an intimate wedding reception. You'll probably need a wedding planner or taskmaster friend to pull off a wedding here. 
  5. LaBelle Winery- If you’re ok with heading to Southern New Hampshire, check out this venue. Literally located on a winery, it has ceremony options outside or inside the modern, rustic inspired event space. It can host larger weddings and I found the staff to be a well-oiled machine. 
  6. The Marriott Long Wharf- The Boston Harbor Hotel, The Fairmont, The Ritz are all perfect in their own way but The Marriott Long Wharf holds a bit of original Boston charm. I think it’s partly the 180 degree view of the harbor and the proximity to well-trod landmarks. It’s a great place for couples with lots of guests coming in from out of town— close to the airport and lots rooms available on-site. 
  7. The Holden Inn- 100% Cape Cod charm. This wedding venue is for the couple that 1- wants a tented wedding 2- loves the idea of their bridal party staying on site. Located in Wellfleet, it’s a great venue for a small to mid-size wedding and provides a low-key yet classic feel. 
  8. Moraine Farm- Federick Law Olmstead helped to design the green space around the venue so it’s a bit of a photographers' dream. Lots of outdoor nooks, crannies and greenery. There are also a few pretty indoor spaces for cocktail hour and a convenient bridal suite on the first floor. 

If you want to check out more options, view my wedding venues and locations list. Tons more places including Downtown Boston, Vermont and Cape Cod. 

with Love, from Katie

A quick snap outside the Holden Inn, Cape Cod

A quick snap outside the Holden Inn, Cape Cod

Details at Laura + Zach's wedding, Quonquont Farm

Details at Laura + Zach's wedding, Quonquont Farm

Heck ya no vacancy! There's a wedding happening 

Heck ya no vacancy! There's a wedding happening 

Inside the barn reception Space, Quonquont Farm

Inside the barn reception Space, Quonquont Farm

Ceremony location at The Codman Estate 

Ceremony location at The Codman Estate 

Detail of the Italian Garden, Codman Estate

Detail of the Italian Garden, Codman Estate

Wine Corks- we got em! LaBelle Winery

Wine Corks- we got em! LaBelle Winery

Codman Estate Gardens

Codman Estate Gardens

Interior event space at LaBelle Winery 

Interior event space at LaBelle Winery 

Carol + Alex in the vineyards at LaBelle Winery 

Carol + Alex in the vineyards at LaBelle Winery 

Year In Review 2017

Stick with me on this. Everything turns out ok. 

I’m driving. The Ted Williams tunnel. Sunday afternoon traffic. My husband Steve in the passenger seat. Pippa in her car seat, checking out the lights coasting by.  

Suddenly, we all flew forward. We had been hit from behind by a car that was doing 80mph. It felt like driving on ice, car slipping left and right. I can’t remember a few seconds but then I was back, Steve calling 9-11.  

We were in an accident without answers. The who’s and why’s, we’ll never really know. Only that the state trooper told us, "the other driver had a medical emergency” and we had zero injuries. 

Moments like this make you adjust your view on the world. You remember to see things more clearly. Appreciate the little things. 

And think: We. Were. So. Lucky. 

How does this tie into my work?

Looking back at my year of photographs from 2017, every wedding and family shoot left a mark on me. Had me thinking a little deeper. I departed every session with the thoughts, hopes of my couples drifting into my mind. The speeches. The looks. The quick gestures. I left buzzing from the excitement and the joy and the happy tears.

Often, I have a hard time getting to sleep at night after shoots. Thinking about the good stuff in life. 

And always thinking: I. Am. So. Lucky. 

Thank you to each and everyone one of my clients. 

with Love, from Katie

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East Boston Engagement Session- Susan + Corey

I always love photographing couples in places that are meaningful to them. So to meet up with Susan and Corey in East Boston was the perfect fit. With a sunny day, a break from the chilly days earlier in the week, we hit up KO Pies and Piers Park. Check out that view of the city! I loved chatting with these two and am psyched to shoot their wedding in 2018. 

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New England Aquarium Wedding- SamAnTHA + Ben

I capped off my 2017 wedding season with Samantha and Ben at the Boston Harbor Hotel and New England Aquarium. Seeing Samantha with her family,  I was filled with gratitude on being able to work with people that approach the world with such love. Samantha and Ben's day began with a first look on the harbor overlooking the ocean. From there, we headed to the Aquarium for a serene ceremony on the top floor, surrounded by the fish tanks. The night capped off with dancing, speeches and cupcakes. Samantha and Ben, thank you so much for a perfect day. I send huge congratulations! 

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