MARRIED: Mandalin + Hunter by Carrie Turner

I loved this wedding. I had the chance to get to know Mandalin and Hunter well during the wedding planning, from shooting an engagement and bridal session for them, and also because I had the good fortune of photographing Mandalin's sister Caroline's wedding. There were great moments, beautiful light, gorgeous details, sequins (!), and a cat photobomber during the bride and groom portraits. It meant so much to me to see my photos used throughout the celebration as well - in the guest book, in a beautiful printed portrait from Mandalin's bridal session, and in the lining of the groom's jacket. It was a lovely day, in so many ways, and I was honored to be there both to celebrate with my clients who've become my friends, and to photograph their beautiful wedding. 

Getting Ready Location: Engaged Asheville • Hair and Makeup: Dollbox Productions 

Venue and Catering: Celine and Company On Broadway • Flowers: The Bloom Room

Cake: Andrea Hollifield • DJ: Spinfire Entertainment

Second Photographer: Nick King

MARRIED: Valerie + Gerhard by Carrie Turner

I love the story of how Valerie and Gerhard met. When Valerie and her mom and brothers moved to Hendersonville 4 years ago, they moved into a house two doors down from Gerhard. He welcomed them to the neighborhood the night they moved in and the rest, as they say, is history.

During the ceremony, on the sunny deck at Crest Center, a swarm of bees rose up behind the wedding party and swirled around before floating off into the sky. It felt like a little blessing from nature for the couple. Gerhard and his family are from South Africa, and I found it especially touching when Gerhard's mom gave a blessing before the meal in Afrikaans. I didn't understand any of the words, except for "family", which seemed so appropriate at a celebration bringing these two families together. At the end of the night, guests circled around the newlyweds on the dance floor, and they all danced together in celebration. 

Congratulations, Valerie and Gerhard, and thank you for sharing your beautiful day with me! 

Thank you to the following awesome vendors for making Valerie and Gerhard's day so perfect: 

Venue: The Crest Center • Officiant: Rev. Jacqueline Weiks, M.S.S. • Cake: Short Street Cakes 

DJ: Sound Extreme Entertainment • Ice Sculpture: Masterpiece Sculptures 

Second Photographer: Sarah Whitmeyer

BRIDAL: Mandalin by Carrie Turner

I have never considered myself much of a studio photographer, but as Mandalin and I planned for her bridal session, I felt that to achieve our vision for her session, the simplicity and control of a studio was needed. This was a bit outside of my comfort zone, but I'm so glad we pursued it. My amazing friend René of Luxe House Photographic allowed me the use of her studio, with the most beautiful light and feel I've seen in a studio space. This session has become one of my all-time favorites, and I feel like I've been opened up to a whole new world I can't wait to explore further. Let this be a lesson to us all to give in when pushed beyond our comfort levels, especially when it comes to creative endeavors, because the beauty of what we can discover in unchartered territory is so worth it. 

MARRIED: Mariate + James by Carrie Turner

An intimate, candlelight ceremony surrounded by family, bilingual vowels, my very favorite homemade cookies, and a handknit gold dress are just a few of the elements that made the wedding of Mariate and James so special. It was truly an honor to photograph this lovely day. 

 

MARRIED: Courtney + Andy by Carrie Turner

From our first telephone conversation, I was drawn into Courtney and Andy's love story. Their devotion to each other and their deep gratitude for having found one another was so profound. I felt instantly like I was witnessing something very important and special. On their wedding day, friends and family surrounded this new couple with love and encouragement. During the final dance of the evening, all the guests present gathered on the dance floor encircling the couple, a perfect symbol for how much love and care had been imbued in the entire wedding day. 

Congratulations Courtney and Andy - I could not be happier for you both. xoxo 

Lots of love to those who created this beautiful day, including: 

Venue: The Crest Center and Pavilion • Bridal Assistant: Weddings by Wendy

Flowers: Becky's Florist • Desserts: Karen Donatelli • Bride and Groom Gifts: Shinola

Second Photographer: Sarah Whitmeyer

ENGAGED: Mandalin and Hunter by Carrie Turner

I met up with Mandalin and Hunter at Primland Resort for their engagement session recently. In spite of extreme heat, the place was absolutely beautiful and we had so much fun exploring this place that (to me) was combination mountain lodge, art museum, and observatory. 

Congratulations Mandalin and Hunter! I really look forward to celebrating your wedding with you. xoxo

FOOD + DRINK: King Daddy's Chicken and Waffles by Carrie Turner

Waffles are just awesome bread.
— John Green

I am a fan of big breakfasts. Years ago my mom gave me a Fiesta-ware waffle iron and it has become a Saturday-morning staple in our house. There's nothing like a freshly-made waffle, especially one made with real buttermilk. Around here we like to start our weekends with a big breakfast, so when King Daddy's Chicken and Waffles opened in our neighborhood, I was ecstatic. King Daddy's has also opened my eyes to the delicious Southern culinary tradition of fried chicken and waffles, satisfying the need for both savory and sweet at the breakfast table. 

I was so happy to shoot some photos for King Daddy's recently, capturing both the friendly atmosphere and delicious food. It's a beautiful space with lovely natural light, a welcoming staff, and some of the best breakfast you can find in our fair city. Enjoy! And be sure to stop by King Daddy's the next time you're in the mood for an amazing Southern breakfast. 



PORTRAIT: The W Family + kitten by Carrie Turner

A kitten is in the animal world what a rosebud is in the garden.
— Robert Southey

When Beth contacted me for a family portrait session, she said she had a location secured for us. It turned out to be an awesome sculpture/glass garden in West Asheville. I've driven, walked, and run past this garden many times and wondered what it was like in the interior, but I never explored it further. A sign at the entrance greeted me with "yes you may" - and I was so glad I did! What a magical, unexpected place. Also joining us for the session was a tiny, adorable kitten, who added so much to our time together and provided constant entertainment for the kids. 

Thanks for a lovely time and a perfect location, Beth and family. XOXO. 

 

ENGAGED: Beth + Jon by Carrie Turner

If you wait for the perfect moment when all is safe and assured, it may never arrive.
— Maurice Chevalier

The Blue Ridge Parkway is an unpredictable place. Darkness can fall quickly, frigid temps can surprise you, views become clouded by sudden fog, and glorious fall color can become wintery bare branches with just a subtle increase in elevation. Scheduling a photo session on the Parkway is always a bit of a gamble. Lucky for us, Beth and Jon's sunrise engagement session at Waterrock Knob was a risk worth taking, and even though it was a bit chilly the beautiful light and perfect fall color made for a beautiful setting. 

Congratulations on your engagement, Beth and Jon, and best wishes for a lifetime of risks with beautiful payoffs. 

 

ENGAGED: Stephanie + Bryan by Carrie Turner

An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.
— Henry David Thoreau

Stephanie and Bryan bravely met me in downtown Asheville for an early morning, chilly engagement session in October. We had a great time exploring some old buildings, visiting the south slope, and the Botanical Gardens. Their two dogs even joined in for a few photos. The best part was getting to know these two great people and to see their relationship unfold in front of my lens. I'm so looking forward to photographing their wedding next year. Thanks for a great morning, Stephanie and Bryan! XOXO. 


WEDDING: Taryn + Mike by Carrie Turner

Keep close to nature’s heart
— John Muir

For two people who met in the wilderness of Western North Carolina, there could not have been a more-perfect day or location for Taryn and Mike's wedding. They were married on a glorious fall day at the Pines Country Inn in Pisgah Forest, NC. Their ceremony spot was surrounded by friends, family, and the beautiful scenery of nature. From her handmade shoes to a bright and sunny bouquet to goldfish centerpieces at the reception, Taryn's creativity infused the entire day with a fun, colorful touch. Lots of joy and laughter filled the day, and it was such a pleasure to be there to document it. Best wishes for many years of adventure, nature, and love, Taryn and Mike! 

Many thanks to my good friend Kendra Stanley-Mills for collaborating with me to photograph this wedding. Other talented vendors include:

Wedding Planner: April Gladieux, Your Perfect Day • Venue: Pines Country Inn 

Flowers: Farm Girl Garden Design • Catering: Square Root Restaurant

Cake and Cupcakes: Blue Ridge Bakery • Rentals: Classic Event Rentals

DJ: Adrian Sethi


WEDDING: Hilary + Douglas by Carrie Turner

Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.
— Rabindranath Tagore

Fall in Western North Carolina this year brought with it some serious rainstorms, and Hilary and Douglas were married on our second weekend of all-day rain in October. The rain seemed to just intensify the changing colors all around us, though, and meant that during the ceremony family and friends crowded close to the couple. It was in that intimate space that these two were married by a friend, with their dogs at their feet and umbrellas all around. It was a beautiful day and the rain became just an afterthought. 

Special thanks to Ashley Gillett for photographing with me. 

Thanks to the following for their contributions: 

Venue: private residence • Flowers: Merrimon Florist • Tent rental: Classic Event Rental 

Catering: Lady Fingers Catering • Cake and Cupcakes: Gimme Some Sugar Sweets • DJ: DJ Malik 

WEDDING: Caroline + Daniel by Carrie Turner

And when it rains on your parade, look up rather than down. Without the rain, there would be no rainbow.
— Gilbert K. Chesterton

If rain on a wedding day is truly good luck, then Caroline and Daniel will have the luckiest life ever. Hurricane Joaquin was an uninvited guest at their wedding in October, but that didn't stop Caroline and Daniel, and their family and friends, from celebrating in the most-joyful way possible. It was a beautiful day full of laughter and tears, and you'd never have known the day-long downpours weren't all part of the plan. 

Thank you, Caroline and Daniel, for sharing your beautiful wedding day with me and for happily weathering the rainstorm. You two were amazing! 

Special thanks to Abby Moore for second shooting with me. 

Special thanks to the following talented vendors:

Ceremony: Dutch Cove Missionary Baptist Church • Reception: Canton Armory

Cake: Just Simply Delicious • Catering: Gerald's Fireplace Restaurant

Makeup: Flawless Asheville Airbrush Artisty • Wedding Coordinator: Monique Worley

BRIDE: Caroline by Carrie Turner

There are no words that can tell the hidden spirit of the wilderness, that can reveal its mystery, its melancholy, and its charm
— President Theodore Roosevelt

When Caroline suggested we do her bridal session in the Cataloochee Valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, I was worried we might be interrupted by crowds flocking to the Valley for a glimpse of the elk herd. Worse yet, I was afraid we wouldn't even be able to shoot there with the elk at their peak of activity and the Park therefore closing sections of the Valley to keep visitors safe. 

When we arrived, though, it was a beautiful day, and we found the historic Palmer Chapel completely empty. Fall was just beginning to color the leaves, the afternoon sun was warm and golden, and Caroline was perfectly at home in her beautiful gown, cowboy boots, and handmade antique brooch bouquet. There were many visitors, and lots of elk, but we still found many lovely spots for photos where we could capture both the awesome natural beauty of the valley as well as this magical time in Caroline's life. 

Thanks for sharing this day with me, Caroline!