Barbara & Daniel’s Fairy Tale Wedding in Chota Falls


Chota Falls wedding

You might remember Barbara & Daniel from their gorgeous Waterfall Day-After session that was featured here a few weeks ago. Today I’m pleased to show you their fairy tale wedding — also by a waterfall! No it’s not fairy tale themed… I just felt it would be appropriate to call it such since they have such an amazing love story and they do look like a prince and princess in the photos. 🙂

Again we have Steffi Smith of Cariad Photography to thank for the beautiful images and here she is to tell us more about the day:

Chota Falls is one beautiful venue. With it’s natural waterfall and romantic European style chapel it has everything a bride and groom can wish for. I photograph a lot of weddings for this venue, but this one was a really romantic affair. The couple had been sweethearts during their teenage years, but life separated them. However they always remained in love with each other. Both went their own ways — Daniel the groom became a decorated helicopter pilot and flew missions for this county in Iraq and Afghanistan. Upon his return he and Barbara reconnected and they had a true fairy tale wedding at Chota Falls. It felt like I was photographing a prince and princess… it was so sweet. Chota’s beautiful backdrops made it even more so. Both absolutely love Scotland so their wedding had a lot of Scottish feelings added to it. This was a small intimate wedding and so special to all including myself. 🙂

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

As Steffi and I mentioned earlier, they have an amazing story which you can read about in their previous feature on this site. They also had a first look and Barbara’s here to share the details:

One thing we did to make our day special was to see each other before the ceremony in the chapel. Our photographer positioned Daniel at the front and then shut the doors as I was positioned at the back. They opened the doors and as I walked down the isle toward my groom, they snapped a few shots of us seeing each other for the first time. It was so intimate and memorable! The stress of everything melted away and we were given the chance to be “in the moment”. Time moves so quickly on that day, I am forever grateful that our photographer shared the wisdom of stopping time to allow us to breathe it all in.

Chota Falls wedding

Don’t Barbara and Daniel make such a gorgeous twosome? From this point on I will let the lovely bride tell you all about their special day in her own words:

We wanted a very intimate, Celtic themed wedding in Scotland but we couldn’t fly everyone we wanted there. (Besides the fact my sweet mother emphatically stated she would NOT get on a plane and fly that far. No way. Nuh-uh. Not gonna happen!) So, we decided to bring a bit of Scotland to the south! The venue we fell in love with was Chota Falls. It held every bit of old-world charm that we were looking for and the staff worked tirelessly to create our special dream day. It had a chapel that was nestled into the hillside but we chose the spectacular waterfall and lagoon to exchange our vows.

Chota Falls wedding

Daniel, his brothers, and his best man wore their respective military uniforms. The Army, Air Force, and Coast Guard were all represented that day! We wanted to honor his service and pay respect to the sacrifices that we made to serve our country. (After 20 years of service, Daniel was highly decorated with several air medals and a combat action badge he received from his last tour to Afghanistan.) He looked every bit the part of the handsome prince, come to claim his princess! As I rode up to the falls in the horse and buggy, his brothers opened the large, wrought iron gate. It was very special to have them there, opening the way for us to begin our new lives together.

Chota Falls wedding

We hired a wonderful bag piper to play for the ceremony. He played the theme from “Braveheart” as he walked down the isle infront of me, heralding my entrance. As the pipes echoed off the terrain, and with the waterfall in front, it seemed as if even the very air smelled of Scotland! I carried a lovely bouquet of white roses, hydrangeas, and thistles with a long, black-watch plaid ribbon tied around them. We felt like the details of our wedding should be infused with Gaelic heritage.

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

We also wrote our own vows. Really, it was more or less, sharing our hearts with one another. One thing we know, is that life is too short and too precious to go through it without letting your love be known to those around you!

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Chota Falls wedding

Our delicious cake had Celtic knotwork around it and we gave shortbread cookies with an Irish blessing as our favors. Even Daniel’s cufflinks were Celtic crosses!

Chota Falls wedding

We danced a waltz to a beautiful song and people told us afterward that we looked like the prince and princess out of a fairy tale story. Honestly, that is how I felt! Every boy wants to be the hero and every girl wants to be the princess…. the good news is you can have it! If I can share any wisdom it is this, go for your dreams! You were made a princess (or a prince) so don’t settle for less. Don’t get caught up in the stress of the wedding but remember what made you fall in love with this amazing person! Let those you hold dear celebrate YOU and remember that these three remain, faith, hope, and love, but the greatest of these is love! It can span time, continents, and bring life back to broken hearts!

Chota Falls wedding

Thank you Steffi for sending your lovely images of this beautiful wedding my way, and congratulations Barbara & Daniel! I wish you two a lifetime of married bliss! 🙂

Photographer: Steffi Smith of Cariad Photography
Venue & Catering: Chota Falls
Dress: Oleg Cassini
Coordinator: Lawanna Luther
Floral: Henry Luther
Bag Pipes: Nathan Mann
Cake: Cecilia Villaveces Cakes

Image submission via Two Bright Lights

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