How do we even begin to explain what an honour it was and how amazing it was to photograph this destination wedding weekend on Hornby Island, B.C., for two of the sweetest souls.
Mariah and Mark invited us to come along to their epic destination wedding to a place that is so special to them, Hornby Island, British Columbia. We learnt that Hornby Island is a very special place and holds many fond memories to both their family and to their relationship together. Nothing makes us happier then getting to photograph two best friends on their wedding day. And when you add in travel, one of the sweetest & most welcoming guest lists, a wedding party that were the literal definition of hype team, a laid back cocktail hour including lawn games, special cocktails and DONUTS, holy crap could this destination wedding weekend at Hornby Island get any better?!
One of the very unique aspects of being a wedding photographer, is the large amount of time we spend with our couples on a wedding day. Often times, we end up being two of the people our couples spend some of the most time with on their wedding day. With that in mind, it’s so important to us that our couples can imagine themselves spending their wedding day with us, and we can imagine spending it with them. It’s a very special friendship we form with our couples, and it makes us so happy when we work with couples such as Mark and Mariah, who treat us like guests/friends, and so much less like just the hired help. From their engagement photoshoot to the final hug goodbye, Mariah and Mark were nothing but a joy to work with, and we are so thankful they chose us to document their wedding.
Mariah and Mark invited and included us in every aspect of their weekend wedding itinerary. After three ferries, and a lot of podcasts while we drove, we finally arrived at Hornby Island and did some location scouting for the wedding the following day. Afterwards, we joined our couple and their guests for their welcome dinner and karaoke night. If you’re curious how to get to Hornby Island from Vancouver, here’s the resource we used to plan this trip – Hornby Island, BC | Find Your Way | Getting to Hornby.
On the Saturday of course was Mariah and Mark’s wedding day, which we will go into detail below on. Many guests rented wooden cabins at Sea Breeze Lodge’s property, or stayed in local airbnb’s. Mariah and Mark made a detailed itinerary with relevant information for out of town guests on their wedding website, including the exact timing and location for their second wedding ceremony.
After celebrating and documenting all day long on Saturday, Morgan and I were invited and partook in the goodbye brunch hosted at Sea Breeze Lodge on Hornby Island by the bride and groom. We loaded up on coffees and a delicious feast before hugging Mariah and Mark extra hard, then headed back on the big journey home with many of the other guests.
Mariah and Mark really took the time to plan out how they wanted their wedding weekend to shape up, and what traditions were and were not important to them for their wedding day. I love when couples consider the many different elements of a wedding day, and customize their wedding day in a way that is authentic to themselves and their relationship. For example, Mariah and Mark opted to have two wedding ceremonies, at two different locations, both on their actual wedding day. The first ceremony was their legal one, on the sandy beaches of Hornby Island, and was extremely intimate involving only their wedding party, us, and their legal officiant. It was short, sweet, and so beyond beautiful. The second wedding ceremony was officiated by Mark’s dad, which created a very distinctive, laid back and extremely special ceremony.
Another tradition they opted to forgo was a wedding cake! Mariah and Mark purchased delicious donuts by a local baker rather than having a traditional multi tiered wedding cake.
Sea Breeze Lodge at Hornby Island has an amazing outdoor lawn space that was such a great space for Mariah and Mark’s cocktail hour. Guests sipped on delicious beverages while playing a variety of lawn games, all while overlooking the ocean. Mariah and Mark didn’t want many formal speeches at their reception, however over the course of the weekend we listened to many beautiful impromptu toasts and candid conversations, all of which made it ever so obvious how important Mariah and Mark are to many of their guests and what a big impact they’ve had on so many of their friends and family members. The dance floor was held outside on the back patio at Sea Breeze Lodge, and was filled all night long. As the sun set down and the stars came out, we noticed the easy going vibe of our bride and groom and their guests. From snuggled up couples by the fireplace, the distant sound of the waves crashing on the beach, the dance floor always brimming with guests, and late night snacks brought out to keep the evening going as we said our goodbyes.
Mariah and Mark’s destination wedding weekend at Hornby Island was truly one of a kind, and we are so thankful we got to be a part of it.