Michener + Johnston Wed at The Lake House at Bulow

From visiting the most romantic city in the world, Santorini, to roaming the ancient ruins of Athens; Susan and Patrick’s love for each other grew stronger than ever during their ten day vacation in Greece. They knew this would be the first of many adventures together as a couple. When the time was right, Patrick grew the courage to propose to Susan at their favorite vineyard near their home in Arlington, VA.

With Susan’s parents residing in the Charleston area, the __ made Charleston the perfect location to celebrate their wedding, and The Lake House at Bulow offered the lowcountry rustic feeling that they were hoping for. We as wedding photographers are always thrilled when a couple chooses to do a first look. We perched Patrick on the secluded island where he waited for Susan to cross the bridge to join him. You could feel the blissful anticipation. Once Patrick turned to see her for the first time, you could see the pure joy in his eyes. He then grabbed his chest, because her beauty took his breath away!

The ceremony was held on the island under the canopy of towering pine trees and surrounded by the pond filled with beautiful water lilies.

After the ceremony, the guests were then guided to the Lake House where they enjoyed a delightful dinner buffet by The Pampered Palate! As the night progressed, everyone danced the night away under a umbrella of stars.

A special thank you to those who helped make this wedding so special: The Pampered Palate for providing a day-of coordinator and delicious catering, Snyder Event Rentals, Squeeze Onsite for the bar and cocktails, Lashes and Lace for doing Susan’s hair and make-up, and Going Coastal Transportation for giving everyone a lift!


For more photos of Charleston weddings, please visit www.rickdeanphotography.com.

Charleston wedding photography by Rick Dean Photography serving Charleston, SC and beyond.


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography


Michener + Johnston ©Rick Dean Photography

To Veil, or Not to Veil?

That is, of course, one of the many questions brides consider as they plan their wedding ensembles. Veils exude tradition and glamour, but can also provide a fun, playful look for weddings of all styles. Today’s brides who choose to don a veil have a multitude of options at their disposal. In today’s blog, we want to offer a brief overview of veil terminology and some of the features and advantages to each length and style.


Veil Lengths


Birdcage veils are short, often structured veils that end just below the eyes. Their short, netted style often makes for a flirty, vintage look. Birdcage veils work with almost all dresses, but they especially make great complements to tea-length dresses and Gatsbyesque gowns that might be overwhelmed with longer veil lengths.


Elbow and Fingertip Length

Elbow and fingertip length veils have both gained in popularity in recent years. Kate Middleton opted for fingertip length when it came to choosing her gorgeous, lace trimmed veil was fingertip length. Because elbow and fingertip length veils drape so beautifully over arms and shoulders, they make a great choice for brides who want some extra coverage or a romantic complement to their dress’s neckline.




Ballet or waltz-length veils get their name from the fact that they are short enough to make dancing a breeze. Typically, ballet veils fall between the knee and ankle, which means they offer an elegance and volume comparable to a floor length veil, but end just high enough that brides won’t have to worry about them touching the ground.

We searched through hundreds of weddings, but were unable to find an example for you. Needless to say it is not the most popular of veils, so if you are a trend setter then this might be the one for you!


Chapel, or floor length veils provide a beautiful, traditional option for veil-loving brides. They are second only to cathedral-length veils in terms of formality.



Cathedral length veils are the longest veils, which can vary from trailing a few inches on the floor to producing a lengthy train. Because of their elegant draping and length, cathedral veils are considered the most formal veil option.

    Charleston Wedding Photographer         20_20150129100239_6246013_medium

Other Veil Terms


The blusher is the part of a veil that conceal the face as the bride walks down the aisle. Considering that their original purpose was to conceal the bride until the groom could assess her as an object of interest, it’s probably a good thing that blushers are now an option rather than a requirement. Despite their somewhat unappealing history, today’s relatively sheer blushers can be an interesting aesthetic choice.

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Mantillas are a type of lace-trimmed veil that drapes over the top of the head and circles the face. Mantillas originated in Spain and are a beautiful traditional option.



Regardless of length, brides can often choose to add tiers to their veil for additional volume and variety. Two or three-tiered veils are a common way to add some extra oomph to an understated gown.

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Between the vast array of lengths and styles, brides who want a veil should have no problem finding something to match their dress and style. Flirty or glamorous, veils not only offer a way of cementing one’s wedding style, they also make for beautiful texture and movement. Veils can also be a great way to incorporate your “Something Old” or your “Something Borrowed.” In fact, many of our brides have worn heirloom veils passed down from family or friends. In short, veils are a fascinating wedding tradition with many options for modern twists, and a great finishing touch to one’s wedding ensemble.

Robinson + Lemery Wed at Hibernian Hall

Ciara wanted her bridal portraits to be taken at her parents home located in one of the historic neighborhoods of downtown Charleston. This home has been in her family for generations, so you could see her sentimental attachment and comfort during our photoshoot. The haint-blue paint, exposed brick, antique furniture and even her little pooch complimented the classic look we were portraying. The solid wood french doors that are the main entrance to the phone made for very special portraits as the doors were made by Ciara’s grandfather.

Robert and Ciara shared a very beautiful and traditional full mass ceremony at the St. Mary of the Annunciation Catholic Church. This is the family church that Ciara grew up in and was active as an alter girl along with her sisters.  You may recall seeing images from this church a few months ago, as this was when her sister Keely married her beau, TC.

Their reception was held at Hibernian Hall where the bride and groom were greeted by their cousin playing celtic music from his Irish bagpipes.  The guests danced the night away to the tunes provided by party band, 7Once from South Augusta, SC.

A special thank you to those vendors who helped with this wedding: Sue Henderson and Carolyn Eiserhardt with Dazzling Designs for the day-of coordination, Fresh Foods Market Catering for the sumptuous food, Sugar Bakeshop for the mouth-watering cake and miniature desserts, Squeeze for making expert cocktails, and Ohh! Events for filling the room with the tables, chairs and linen rentals.

For more photos of Charleston weddings, please visit www.rickdeanphotography.com.

Charleston wedding photography by Rick Dean Photography serving Charleston, SC and beyond.


Bridal Portraits Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


Ciara getting ready for her big day! Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


Robert getting ready for the big day! Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


Wedding Ceremony Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


Husband and Wife Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


Wedding Details Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


Wedding Reception Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography


The Send Off Robinson + Lemery ©Rick Dean Photography

Aschman + Barry Wed at Middleton Place and Celebrate at William Aiken House

Dana and Will didn’t just plan a gorgeous Charleston wedding: they created a multi-day extravaganza. The fun-loving couple was as attuned to their guests as each other. Since every guest traveled to the city for their nuptials, Dana and Will created an itinerary full of Charleston activities to assure their friends and family made the most of their own forays into Charleston. In addition to a series of carriage tours and dinners, the men ventured out on fishing trips and golfed at Patriots Point and the ladies brunched and pampered themselves throughout town. On Thursday, the couple, their families and their wedding party of two had an intimate rehearsal dinner at High Cotton, one of Charleston’s most acclaimed restaurants.


Rehearsal Dinner Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography

On Friday evening, Dana and Will thanked all their guests with a welcome party at The Cooper River Room. Following a evening filled with great music, delicious food, and nearly every yard game imaginable, Dana and Will celebrated the final moments of their wedding eve with a stunning sunset beneath the Ravenel Bridge.


Welcome Party Decor Ashmann + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Welcome Party Food Ashmann + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Welcome Party Fun Ashmann + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Welcome Party The Happy Couple Ashmann + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography

The next morning, Dana and Will met with their respective families to prepare for their big day. After completing her hair and makeup in her family’s suite at The Francis Marion Hotel, Dana proceeded to the William Aiken House to dress and take family photos. The bride retreated into the property’s historic carriage house to find her stunning lace gown, which contrasted beautifully with the cottage’s exposed brick and antique silver mirrors.


Dana getting ready for her big day! Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Will getting ready for the big day! Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography

After a series of family photos and bridal portraits, the Aschman’s proceeded to Middleton Place for the ceremony. A caravan of excited guests shortly followed the family down scenic Highway 61 to Middleton, where they were offered refreshments, fans, and colorful sunglasses.


Bridal Portraits Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Stunning Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography

As the wedding march began, Dana emerged from between the natural vine archways of the adjacent garden and descended the stone steps to join her husband-to-be. Together, they stood beneath the canopy of two ancient oaks that overlooked the majestic Ashley River. While the couple said their “I dos” beneath a gorgeous blue sky, intense clouds began rolling in immediately afterwards. Fortunately, the rain held off just long enough for everyone to make it to the reception at the William Aiken House and for the newlyweds to pose for a series of harborside portraits. As soon as the newlyweds held each other close for their first dance under the sanctuary of the gorgeously canopied tent, it started to down pour. It was truly a magical moment.


Wedding Ceremony Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Wedding Ceremony Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Wedding Reception Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Husband and Wife Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


First Dance Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography


The send off! Aschman + Barry ©Rick Dean Photography

A special shout out to all of those who made this magical weekend possible: Thank you Sara Cavallon of Sara Cavallon Celebrations for designing, planning and orchestrating this incredible event. Awesome cake by Cakes By Kasarda. Thank you Justin Wham for putting together the beautiful flowers. Thank you Smile Lounge for entertaining the guests with your photobooth. Thank you Other Brother Entertainment for the ceremony and reception music. Thank you William Aiken House for the delicious catering. Thank you Technical Event Company for creating the perfect ambiance. Thank you Snyder Event Rentals for providing your tables, chairs and glassware. Thank you Wedding Hair by Charlotte and Jonny Sherwood for making Dana look like a princess on her special day. Thank you inventivEnvironments for the gorgeous draping.

For more photos of Charleston weddings, please visit www.rickdeanphotography.com.

Charleston wedding photography by Rick Dean Photography serving Charleston, SC and beyond.

Wingate Plantation! Charleston’s Newest Wedding Venue

We are excited to announce a new outdoor wedding venue on Johns Island, Wingate Plantation. This venue is a great option for anyone looking for a plantation setting near the Kiawah/Seabrook area. This historic plantation is located on acres of gorgeous green fields, next to a small romantic pond and dotted with majestic oak trees draped in Spanish moss. It is the perfect location for the whimsical, lowcountry wedding you have always dreamt of.



The quaint farmhouse located on the property is open for the bride and her bridesmaids to get ready in. When you walk inside there is a spacious living room with plenty of seating, and through the door on the left is one large bedroom with a small bathroom.  To the right of the living room is a small kitchen where you can keep the bridal party munchies and drinks, and could be used later by your catering company.




The charming front porch and tree swing provide ideal places to take bridal portraits and of the newlyweds after they say “I do”. Sarah Rodelsperger, sitting in for the future soon-to-be mrs., is the venue coordinator for Wingate Plantation. She was kind enough to show us around so we could get a good feel for the location.

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The barn, just right of the farmhouse, offers a cozy room for the groom and groomsmen to hang out in.




One really neat option that differentiates Wingate Plantation from the rest, is that they offer vintage church pews for rent. This provides a more traditional feel without having to be inside!


The above photo courtesy of Andrew Donnan  http://donnanphoto.com


The above photo courtesy of Andrew Donnan  http://donnanphoto.com20_20150115105825_6225580_large

The property includes a huge 40×80 white tent with a concrete floor making for the perfect reception hall.




 This location will do extremely well without a doubt, so make sure to book your day for the upcoming wedding season! We look forward to capturing our first wedding at the Wingate Plantation very soon.
Charleston wedding photography by Rick Dean Photography.