How the age of technology is wonderful. Think about it, so many relationships in this day and age stem from the internet. That’s where Kaitlin and Robert’s story began, on an app, in Montréal which brought us to their big day at Beantown Receptions.
I arrived at Beantown to find the space decorated with beautiful bud vases with flowers, pink accents and the sweetest table cards with the hashtag #springintowinter. I’ve been to this venue many times but I’d actually never seen this colour scheme and thought it brightened up the space so beautifully. Not long after my arrival came our Bride, her mom and her sister. I took her dress out of its big and stared at it in awe. I knew it was going to look so amazing on her. And then she showed me her necklace which was a family heirloom as it belonged to her grandmother. A lovely piece that she wore so beautifully. Robert’s details were also beautiful and meaningful as he wore his grand-fathers watch and cufflinks all the way from Poland.
As Kaitlin got dressed, Robert awaited nearby, a complete puddle of nerves while his bride giggled and filled the room with joy while her mom and sister helped her into her dress. Mom looked so beautiful in her blue dress which as I was informed later, she made herself! The raw silk material was chef’s kiss. She smiled as she helped her daughter with her mother’s necklace and held back tears. Don’t worry Margot, you would cry a lot later on. Robert had written a little something in a card to give to Kaitlin and so, everyone but myself left the room to give her a little privacy as she read it… And she burst into laughter! I was anticipating a tear or two, as is typical when spouses give each other cards on their wedding day, but no, Kaitlin literally laughed out loud. In the end it wasn’t a big, grand, emotional letter. It was essentially ‘’Love you. Can’t wait to marry you.’’ Which was in style with Robert and his adorable nerves.
We led our groom into some shade because of course, it was a super sunny day and we wanted him to actually be able to see Kaitlin for the first look and not be blinded by the light. As Kaitlin made her way over, Robert tried to keep his composure, tilting his head up and keeping his eyes closed. Kaitlin tapped his shoulder and when he spun to see her, he couldn’t help himself but to take a quick glance and take her immediately into his arms for a big hug and a kiss. Once his nerves left, he stepped back and had a real look at his bride and how beautiful she was. And so, they hugged again but this time, they held on for a long time. Kaitlin audibly sniffled and was crying on his shoulder, it was finally happening and she was just so overcome with joy. After wiping away her tears, and a few photos, we let the happy couple walk towards their ceremony space to meet their wedding party where we would continue with our adventure.
This wedding party was honestly so easy going and we had such a lovely time during their portraits. Wedding party portraits don’t always go so easy smooth because well, the more people, the more voices, the more people to round up and sometimes it’s truly like herding cats. But this group, well there was only two attendants on either side which made for our day to be a breeze! Also, I LOVED the bridesmaids’ dresses. I never see this kind of pattern, neckline or even texture on bridal party dresses so it was quite refreshing to see. Honestly, I would have worn this gown and you truly could, shorten it and wear it again (27 dresses anyone?). Time was flying and so we finished up with a few portraits of Robert and Kaitlin and then went to hide them as guests were starting to arrive.
Guests started mingling as they waited for their carriage ride to bring them to the ceremony site and honestly, I was like omg, everyone here is so stylish. I credit it with them having that classic European culture from Poland and bringing it to us here, in the Great White North. The guests were amazed that Beantown offered attendees this horse and carriage ride, truly a sweet and rustic charm for this magical day. Before heading over to the ceremony however, we still had to do a little magical moment with Kaitlin and Stewart, doing the reveal. Stewart was all smiles as he saw his little girl as a bride for the first time. The excitement in his eyes was palpable as he hugged his daughter and walked her over to await that special moment, patiently. And just like that, it was time to head over to the ceremony site, but not before a quick shot of Butterscotch Alcohol to ‘’warm the cockles’’ and be ready for that next step.
Pulling up to our spot, we noticed that woops, the cloud above us was very dark, and that drizzling rain was starting. Not wanting to get our party wet, we figured we would wait just a few minutes for it to past, it was simply a cloud after all. But alas, the sky had different plans for us and what started as waiting 5-10mins, turned into 30mins and us inviting the guests inside the barn area to keep dry because we were determined to have this ceremony outdoors! Eventually, the skies cleared, the seats were wiped down and dried for the guests and we were finally able to get things on their way.
Robert walked in arm in arm with both his mom and dad as his groomsmen followed suit. He first greeted Rehan with a big smile and an even bigger hug and then, well then came David, his best man. I honestly laughed so much at how he greeted him, performing a cross motion on him, tapping his forehead and then throwing his arms to the sky, a la prayer style. Everyone laughed as finally David gave him a big hug, almost lifting him off the ground before taking his place beside his best friend. The ladies made their way to their heart shaped spots as Kaitlin made her grand entrance, also arm in arm with her mom and dad. Margot kept her cool, and so did Stewart, good start, good start.
The ceremony was beautiful, how could it not be? Kaitlin and Robert spoke of how they met, inside jokes, promises to one another, having both her parents in tears, the bridesmaids in tears, the groomsmen in tears and of course, Robert’s mom in tears. But all those tears were filled with so many smiles no less. Surprisingly enough though, I don’t think neither Kaitlin nor Robert shed a tear during their ceremony, they just smiled through it all and held hands, hardly ever letting go. When it came time to announce them as Husband and Wife, the kiss was so sweet and everyone erupted into applause. They were announced for the first time as Mrs. And Mr. Winter, yep you read that right, Robert is taking Kaitlin’s last name and I LOVE THAT. They boarded their post ceremony ride on a private horse and buggy around the property as guests got started on cocktail hour (after a quick group photo once our happy couple came back of course).
Cocktail hour(s) came and went so quickly, it seems like a blur! There was drinks and an amazing Polish style charcuterie board for guests to enjoy as they walked the property grounds. We of course took the time to get family photos done which ooooooweeee were there ever a lot haha. But for Robert and Kaitlin, these were the important people and they wanted so many photos to commemorate it all. My favourites though had to be the photos with the two babies in attendance. I may not have kids, but god do I ever love them. I love to make them laugh and smile and it was easy with these two little girls. The funny part? Getting them to look at me and smile wasn’t the hard part, it was getting everyone else in the photos NOT to look at the babies and laugh at my shenanigans behind the camera. We spent the rest of cocktail mingling with guests, enjoying the rest of the sun the day had to offer and ended things with a few beautiful photos of the happy couple around the property one last time.
Reception was such a surprise for me because of how Kaitlin and Robert had arranged their seating chart. They didn’t want to be separate from their guests, but rather be included with the people they love and so they sat with them rather than at a sweetheart or table with their wedding party. I’m not sure I’ve really ever seen that (other than a kings table) so it was a nice change from my perspective. The evening went without a hitch with speeches to be had by Roberts mom, Kaitlin’s dad, David and Brenna, Kaitlin’s sister and made of honour. I always love listening to speeches because I always get these fun tidbits about each person as individuals but also stories of them together. Here are a few tidbits I thought were so sweet or funny from these speeches:
Both Kaitlin and Robert were in their respective Girl Guides and Scouts as children. Kaitlin’s Girl Guide name being Sundew which her dad, Stewart referenced. I laughed though because although it’s a beautiful thing, Stewart wanted to remind us that it was also a carnivorous plant, truly showing the two sides of his daughter! I think though he meant Kaitlin is carnivorous in the sense that she tackles and eats any obstacle that comes her way. Robert also apparently fell in love with Kaitlin’s eyes, hair and let’s not forget her lifeguard swimsuit! Yes that’s right, Kaitlin wanted to become a canoe instructor for her Girl Guides so she actually got her lifeguard certificate and obviously Robert got to reap the rewards on that one.
David’s speech was also very heartfelt, talking about how for the longest time, it was just him and Robert. Truly the bestest of friends who even for a while there had Kaitlin as their third wheel because of how close they have been for so long. This truly put Robert to tears, enough to the point he had to wipe his eyes multiple times, taking his glasses off in the process. But my ultimate favourite moment came when Brenna came up for her speech. She mentioned some beautiful moments of her and Kaitlin growing up. From sharing their dads computer chair to play games until, they were too old (i.e puberty hit and as our bodies do, the lady hips came through) to fit in it together. To having separate rooms but deciding they would rather share one big room and make it the coolest thing a teenager would love to have. The best however would be a Winters Promise.
This is a Promise that can NEVER be broken. So many in their lives, secrets, moments, anything they could share with one another, would never be broken. And so she invited Robert up to cross pinky’s and recite his first Winters promise to Brenna, to do many things, but most importantly of all, to love her sister forever. And so Robert’s first ever Winters promise came to be as guests cheered and he went over to kiss his wife.
Over the speakers, guests were invited to take their belongings and head outdoors. People seemed confused as to what was happening. When they saw that Kaitlin and Robert had popped up on the little island on Beantown’s pond, they cheered as they realized this is where they would be doing their first dance. They cheered even more when they realized that they had actually choreographed a beautiful dance, really showing off Kaitlin’s dress, full of twirls and swirls. The biggest surprise however, the fireworks! No one knew they were coming and guests were in total awe that Kaitlin and Robert got to have this magical moment under the stars.
That’s not all folks, it was time for the mother-son dance. Normally these dances are to a slow song, especially the father-daughter dance. But ohhhh nooooo, not tonight. I was in shock when Robert and his mom hit the dance floor and FREAKING KILLED IT! They danced to a Polish song and tore up the dance floor. Smiling and laughing the entire way through. The crowd loved it, and truly, so did I. Everyone was having so much fun that the song lasted a good 5-6minutes, tiring out Robert and his mom but it was an absolute joy for them both. Kaitlin and her dad didn’t disappoint though. They followed it up with a just as fun dance, swinging around the entire dance floor, Kaitlin holding her dress because her bustle broke but not having a care in the world as she laughed through the whole thing.
The remainder of my evening was to be had on the dance floor. Kaitlin and Robert really knew what songs their guests would like because the 90’s dance tunes, Abba, Backstreet Boys, 2000’s RnB, you name it, they had it. Guests were loving it, and so was I! In the end though, I finished things up with a portrait of Kaitlin and Robert by the pond, under the full moon. Their wedding day, 05-05-2023. The 5th, which both of them are born on the fifth of their respective month, was a magical day, complete with a full moon, just for them.
Love you both to the moon and back and I can’t wait to see where the future takes you. You’re both so smart, caring, and truly a joy to be around (and your families/friends were pretty awesome). Thank you for having me be a big part of your day xox
Hair – Erin Heather Beauty
Makeup – Brenna Winter
Wedding Dress – A&BÉ Seattle; Madi Lane
Bridesmaids Dresses – David’s Bridal
Groom and Groomsmen – SurMesur Ottawa
Flowers – A&M Florals
Stationary – Emily Lillies
Officiant – Keith Langille at Exceptional Ceremonies
Venue – Beantown Receptions