Best of 2021 Weddings | Richmond Wedding Photographer

When I think of 2021, I will always be reminded of a life-changing year. It was the busiest wedding season since photographing weddings in 2017! I put over 20,000 miles on my car driving to and from 23 engagement sessions and 38 wedding days. This year forced me to grow in the best of ways.

Sitting down reflecting on this year I’m baffled, to say the least. Every year has its challenges and new exciting chapters. In June I left Charlottesville and started a new life in Richmond, Virginia. So far, I have loved Richmond and can’t wait to photograph more Richmond weddings in 2022 and 2023! And yes, I still plan to travel to Charlottesville and NOVA for weddings!

I can’t express my gratitude enough for all the wonderful vendors I’ve collaborated with this year that helped provide a seamless experience for the couples who finally got to say “I Do”. This year was like no other with all the rescheduling from the previous wedding season. I couldn’t have done it without the support and patience from my clients and fellow vendors.

To celebrate all of my couples this year, I wanted to highlight each AE Couple with fun superlatives / awards. This has been one of my favorite posts to write! It’s been a joy to reminisce on each wedding!

And now I present to you… the best of 2021 weddings!

The Best Cake Award

Christiana & Justin

The cake speaks for itself! Christiana and Justin had an elegant wedding at The Market at Grelen. In 2021 I noticed a trend in more colorful wedding bouquets and decor. I loved the pop of coral colors throughout their wedding day and the flowers on every tier of the cake! This cake was a statement piece at their reception!

Blue bridal shoes. Colorful wedding cake with flowers. Bride and groom portraits and first dance. Coral florals on wedding cake.

 Puppy Portraits Award

Megan & Chance

Meet Riley, a good boy who never fails to smile for some treats! Megan and Chance included their 1 year old pup for a couple of minutes during portraits. Pro-tip for puppy portraits: bring treats and a helper! It was such an honor to capture Megan and Chance’s wedding in a secluded area of Southwest Virginia.

Bride and groom photos with dog. Groom fist bumping ring bearer down the aisle. Wedding dress with lace in the back. Dog smiling at wedding.


The Best First Dance

Jordan & AJ

Jordan & AJ’s wedding was one to never forget, partially because of their first dance. It started off with the sweetest first look with Jordan’s bridesmaids followed by a first look with AJ. From the moment Jordan and I first spoke on the phone, I was looking forward to this day! Two of Jordan’s bridesmaids were past brides of mine. A second honorable award could be “Most AEP Couples in One Place”. As you’ll see, their “Best First Dance” superlative was well earned with a memorable flip! This set the bar for their reception. It was bittersweet to see them wave goodbye in the limo.

Bridesmaids crying seeing bride for the first time at Alturia Farm. Groom seeing bride for first time. Half up, half down bridal hairstyle. Group wedding party photo. Black and white bride and groom portrait at Alturia Farm. Ashley Eagleson Photography with clients. Flip during bride and groom first dance. Bride and groom waving goodbye in limo.


Most Intimate First Look

Justin & Andrea

The whole day I forgot I was in Virginia and felt like I was whisked away to Napa Valley or the wine regions of Italy. Justin and Andrea’s day was an intimate wedding surrounded by their closest family and friends in Southern Virginia. They shared the sweetest first look in the vineyard then read heartfelt letters written to each other! It was such a joy to capture all of the sweet moments shared between them!

Floral arch at wedding ceremony. Bride tapping groom's shoulder before first look. Bride and groom seeing each other for the first time. Bride and groom reading letters to each other. Wedding photos at vineyard venue near Roanoke.

Award For Faux Flowers

Nick & Shelly

Shelly and Nick are incredibly kind and light-hearted which made everything from our first email to their sparkler exit smooth and peaceful! It was so great to witness them finally tie the knot and dance with their family and friends.  I couldn’t believe it when Shelly showed me her bouquet and told me she had purchased them from Something Borrowed Blooms. I was amazed at how real the flowers looked!!

Wedding at Virginia Cliffe Inn. Black and white photo of bride and groom holding hands. Bride and groom walking down aisle after first kiss. Bride and groom kissing at Virginia Cliffe Inn. Sparkler exit at wedding reception.

The Luckiest Rainy Wedding Day

Emily & Christian

Emily and I went to the same college but didn’t cross paths. During their engagement session, it was so great to officially meet her and get to know the both of them! Throughout our time together they’ve become more like friends and they even came to Richmond for a mini session after their wedding for pictures with their new pup! Before heading out to Emily and Christian’s wedding I triple checked that I had all my clear umbrellas in the trunk. It was pouring and the weather wasn’t looking to be in our favor. Up until after the first look, we took all the photos under covered porches. The rain eventually stopped and we were able to go outside for the rest of the evening! They say “rain is good luck on your wedding day” and we sure lucked out! Emily and Christian, your smiles are contagious and I adore you two!

Groom getting ready. Bride getting ready in bridal suite at The Barn at Timber Creek. Bride wiping away groom's tears. Bride and groom laughing. Black and white photo of bride and groom under veil. Reception space at The Barn at Timber Creek. Candid photo of bride and groom during reception.

The Largest Bridal Party

Nicole & Hunter

Nicole and Hunter’s Keswick Vineyards wedding was a lively event. As you see some of their wedding photos, you’ll notice that their energy and laughter are infectious! There was nothing but pure laughter and joy! Their wedding party brought on the party! Check out more from their wedding here!

Groom and groomsmen in black suites walking. Bride and groom walking down aisle happily at Keswick Vineyards. Wedding photos from Fall wedding. Group wedding party photo at Keswick Vineyards. Bride and groom with signature cocktail. Guests dancing at wedding reception.


Micro-Wedding Part Two of the Year

Erin & Roy

Erin and Roy were originally set to get married in May of 2020 and ended up postponing until September. Come September of 2020, the pandemic hadn’t ended and they decided to elope at The Greenbrier. A year later, they celebrated with their loved ones. There was a live band, an exquisitely decorated room inspired by The Greenbrier, and a lovely dinner. It was so great to finally see Erin and Roy come together with their friend and family after literally years of planning.

Wedding couple at The Greenbrier. Newlyweds at The Greenbrier. Wedding reception details at Glenmore Country Club.Live band at wedding.

Wedding reception details at Glenmore Country Club.


Best Outfit Change

Katie & Kelsey

In 2021 I captured 38 wedding days, 2 of which were associate shooting for Heather Dodge Photography. Katie and Kelsey was my first associate wedding for Heather! It was such an honor to photograph their wedding day. These two spent the morning getting ready together but kept their first dresses a surprise. They shared an emotional first look followed by reading their vows in private. After the ceremony, they changed into matching jumpsuits for the reception!


The Most Custom Designed Wedding Dress

Emily & Chris

Emily’s dress wins the award for the most custom-designed wedding dress! After the pandemic impacted their original wedding plans, Emily and Chris shared their vows during an intimate ceremony with just a handful of loved ones. A year later, they came together with both their families and friends and renewed their vows. It was such a special day to have everyone gathered together! One of my favorite moments was when Emily surprised Chris with a new look- the skirt of her wedding dress was able to come off for a shorter dress to dance in during the reception!

Elopement in Richmond, Virginia. Bride and groom walking down the streets of Richmond, VA.


Most Likely To Be Confused With a Styled Shoot

Tara & Babar

I will forever be dreaming of Tara and Babar’s wedding. Every detail throughout the day was elegant and didn’t take away from Keswick Vineyards view. A second award could be some of the best muted pastel florals!! This was my second wedding associate shooting for Heather Dodge Photography and I am so thankful to have been there to photograph Tara and Babar’s wedding at Keswick Vineyards. They were beyond kind and welcoming!

Fall olive green and orange wedding colors at Keswick Vineyards. Fall wedding ceremony at Keswick Vineyards. Couple laughing while veil flies at Keswick Vineyards taken by Richmond wedding photographer. Wedding reception at Keswick Vineyards decorated for Fall. Groom and groomsmen in tuxes. Best of Richmond weddings. Bride dancing at wedding.


The Windiest Wedding

Erin & Luke

From the first time Erin and I chatted, we imminently clicked and I felt like we were old friends! Over the year we exchanged emails and Instagram DMs. She told me she couldn’t wait for me to meet her bridesmaids because she knew we’d all mesh so well together! It’s always special when you find “your people” who make you feel at home. Luke and Erin win the award for the windiest ceremony. I almost always check the weather for rain but never have I thought to check for wind before! Not once did I hear Erin or Luke complain about the wind or cold temperatures. The wind added the most dramatic flair to their ceremony photos at King Family Vineyards!

Bridesmaid hugging bride. Fall wedding at King Family Vineyard. Groomsmen in blue suits at King Family Vineyards wedding. Windy wedding ceremony at King Family Vineyard. Portrait of bride and groom. Minimalistic reception decoration. Fun bride and groom introduction.


The Most Unique Bridal Bouquets

Kristin & Mason

I’ve only ever seen photos on Pinterest of hoop bridal bouquets and was so excited when I walked into the bridal suite and saw the unique design Kristin had picked out! The hoop bridal bouquet was the perfect alternative to a traditional bouquet!

Bridal details. Bridal suite with balloon arch. Burgundy velvet bridesmaid dresses. Bride and groom running with wedding party. Wedding ceremony in pine trees. Bride and groom laughing at The Barn at Timber Creek. Night portraits at The Barn at Timber Creek.


The Best Fall Foliage

Lauren & Bob

I almost gave these two the “longest engagement award”! Their original date was set back for the Spring of 2020!! Their November 2022 wedding was blessed with a late Fall and just in time for peak foliage. The Fall colors were unreal from Moss Vineyards. Truly some of the prettiest colors I’ve ever seen!

Fall wedding at Charlottesville Wedding venue. Bride and groom portraits taken by Richmond Wedding photographer. Bride and groom wedding portraits at Moss Vineyards.


Sentimental Ceremony Superlative

Evans  & Devin

Throughout our time together, Evans kept saying she was praying for great weather so they could do their ceremony outside at Agecroft Hall. It’s not that she didn’t want an inside ceremony, but she really wanted to be able to get married at the same location as her grandparents! The week of the wedding the weather wasn’t looking promising and it even rained most of the morning. Thankfully, it ended up clearing out and being one of the warmest December weddings one could ever wish for!!

Bride at The Greencroft wedding. Groom seeing bride for the first time. Wedding ceremony at The Greencroft. Winter wedding portrait by Richmond wedding photographer. Bridesmaids wearing midnight blue. Wedding at The Branch Museum in Richmond Virginia. Branch museum wedding reception.


The Best and Coldest Golden Hour of 2021

Andrea & Lucas

My last wedding of the year was at King Family Vineyards and it was by farthest the coldest wedding of the year. Andrea and Lucas shared their vows in private after their first look before heading to the ceremony. After the ceremony, I asked her if she would be okay bracing the cold one more time for portraits. We waited inside until the light was perfect and then whisked away to chase the light and these were some of my favorite golden hour pictures of the year!

Sharing private vows at King Family Vineyards. Holiday themed wedding. Winter wedding in Charlottesville. Holiday themed wedding. Winter wedding portraits by Richmond Wedding Photographer. Winter bride and groom portrait. Christmas themed wedding reception. Bride and groom portraits wrapped in veil at King Family Vineyards. King Family Vineyards wedding.


If you’re wanting to see more of 2021, take a more detailed look at these weddings:

A Vineyard Wedding In Charlottesville

Market at Grelen Garden Wedding

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My mission is to authentically capture your day exactly as it unfolds, preserving the genuine emotions and raw beauty that makes your story uniquely yours from a storyteller lens. Honored to capture your day with depth and attention to the fine details.

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