May

12

2020

Dolly Sods WV Wedding: Mary & Tyler

Deep Creek Lake Wedding Photographer

Mary and Tyler had a beautifully unique wedding at Dolly Sods in West Virginia. They rented a cabin in neighboring Canaan Valley, invited 12 of their closest family and friends to join them, and enjoyed a casual, relaxing weekend in the mountains to celebrate their union. It was the first time I had experienced a wedding like this…and it happened six years ago.

I wrote Mary and Tyler’s wedding blog post in 2014, but because it was published on jessicafikeblog.com and because I wasn’t knowledgeable enough in URL value, the content and the site no longer exist. BUT with the current changes happening in the world of weddings, the remake of their wedding blog post is needed, and so very appropriate. 

“Big weddings” aren’t allowed right now. Gathering by the hundreds has been restricted and so many couples who were planning to marry in 2020 are having to drastically change their plans. Some are cancelling, some are postponing and some are opting for small ceremonies this year and holding a big party later. 

That’s exactly what Mary and Tyler did six years ago. They had the small ceremony now/sooner rather than later + big party later kind of wedding before it was cool! It was more important for them to marry on a certain date and do it at their favorite hiking spot…and that meant they wouldn’t be able to accommodate 100+ people. So they had two wedding days! A very small wedding day in the mountains in June and a big party a West Virginia venue in August. Getting married one day and then having your celebration another day…and doing it months later!? This obviously wasn’t a familiar concept, and I remember not really understanding it at first. But I was able to capture both for Mary and Tyler and I remember feeling so inspired by the unique choices they had made for their wedding…

When I arrived at the cabin in the mountains, their hiking sandals were polished and ready, Mary’s friend Julia (who eventually became a JFP bride!) did her hair, Tyler relaxed in the living room…

Mary designed and created all the florals for the day! 

Beyond her bridal bouquet and her bridesmaids bouquet, Mary also decorated the cabin with flowers…

Her sister prepping dinner, her dad enjoying a drink…and Mary stealing some sweet moments with her family before she gets dressed.

I just loved this little dining set up! The florals, lace table covering and chandelier really made the space feel elegant…

Some flowers for the dog, too!

Mary even stole some sweet moments with Tyler before she got dressed. Why shouldn’t you get to hang out as much as possible on your wedding day!? Rent a cabin in the mountains, have just 12 wedding guests and suddenly all the “rules” get thrown out the window! I’m a big fan of this, friends!

She also stole some sweet moments with their dog…

A first look that included the dog. 🙂

Dolly Sods was a bit of a hike from the cabin, so we hopped in a caravan of cars and headed up the mountain. Mary and Tyler were so kind to let me ride with them…

Mary finished her vows in the car. I was so impressed that she was able to look down and write while riding on the dirt mountain road. I definitely would have gotten sick to my stomach, ha!

Mary and Tyler’s favorite hiking spot was just beyond these trees…

What an aisle for the bride to walk down! 🙂

And what a view! Both for Tyler…seeing his bride coming down the aisle. And for all of us looking out into the mountains!

Mary’s parents…how cute are they!? 🙂

Small weddings also include some nice family portraits…

And bridesmaids, too!

Rain was in the forecast so we worked through some quick bride-groom portraits! And about five minutes later, we got caught in the rain…

A quick escape in the rain!

Back in the car for one more portrait spot!

Love this classy, elegant moment of Mary…:) 

They didn’t care that we’d get wet and that their clothes might get dirty. They also didn’t care that we didn’t to hop across rocks and trail through thick bushes to get to our next photo location. They just wanted to have fun, embrace the adventure and capture  the beauty of the area that they chose to get married in…

This is the Bear Rocks area of Dolly Sods…

A few snuggles before we headed back to the cabin…

And when we arrived, the group was waiting with champagne!

They all enjoyed a home cooked meal, decadent desserts and just a no-stress, relaxing, celebratory evening. I was so impressed by everything and just felt like WOW, this is such a different experience! Something so different than the traditional and the “normal”, but yet just as meaningful and enjoyable…and maybe even more so than those “big weddings” that we’re used to having.

Mary and Tyler were able to have a personal, unique, intimate wedding day that completely focused on the two of them, but they were also able to have the giant celebration that included a large group of their friends and family, too! There’s so much value in both of the ways they decided to have a wedding and I really hope these originators can be inspiration for other engaged couples, too. Virus or no virus. 🙂

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