We all know that the Bay Area has several destinations that draw tourists from around the world. From the Golden Gate Bridge to the pearl necklace lights of Lake Merritt to the bustling sights of the Silicon Valley, we are lucky to live in a place brimming with obvious attractions. However, it is the little known gems off the beaten path that really light us up as photographers. Shelldance Orchid Gardens is one of those places. It is a place where you can have a greenhouse wedding that feels both majestic and intimate, a perfect place to celebrate the first day of the rest of your lives together.
Leah and Tom currently live on the East Coast, but the magic of Shelldance (as well as their family and friends who live in the area) brought them back to the Bay for their wedding ceremony. The couple said their incredibly meaningful, wry and often funny vows to each other in a cozy greenhouse ceremony, surrounded by vibrant plants that matched the beautiful embroidery of Leah’s gown. We knew Leah and Tom were a lovely couple prior to their ceremony but we felt really lucky to be present for their vows which not only covered their steady love for each other but also Tom’s apparently well known fascination with the weather and traffic patterns. The lighthearted and warm nature that was expressed in their vows permeated the entire event, which made the venue feel even more like a secret hideaway just for the couple and their loved ones.
The event was full of lively details that we were happy to capture, from the live plant centerpieces, a sweet food spread by Fogcutter catering and an upbeat performance by Campbell’s Jazz Soup. These details provided a great backdrop for the heartwarming stories and funny anecdotes shared by Leah and Tom’s friends during the reception. Events like Leah and Tom’s wedding remind us just how lucky we are to be wedding photographers, as we get to be witness to the union of absolutely lovely people. #Blessed