Every bride deserves to be celebrated in way that is unique to them. Here are my tips for 5 ways to level up your bridal brunch.
This is the first step since everything else like food, florals, and decor are based off of that! Ultimately the goal here is to find something that mimics the bride’s taste, since her opinion matters the most!
If you don’t have a theme in mind, pick a fun color palette and go from there! Not every bridal shower needs a theme, but a central idea/color is a great way to level up your bridal brunch.
For this bridal brunch styled shoot, we stuck with bright, vibrant colors like dark green, varying shades of pink, and gold. This created a super feminine and bold vibe for the decor!
Along with the colors and theme, decide what the dress code of the bridal shower will be! As the host/planner of the bridal shower, you set the tone here. Most likely, your guests will be wondering what to wear!
Will everyone dress up? Is this a casual yet cute event? Should guests all wear a certain color? If it’s going to be outside, make sure everyone knows so they can plan for the weather.
Bottom line: only the bride wears white!
Every party needs some snacks! To make it memorable for the bride, find something personalized and unique. You can never go wrong with cookies & cupcakes, especially when they’re from Kat’s Confections.
For Kansas City bridal showers, look into Go Go Candy Co! This is Kansas City’s one and only candy truck. This made our styled shoot sooo unique, fun, and YUMMY.
Decorating your bridal shower venue ensures that it’s photo-ready and super personalized for the bride! Being intentional with the glassware, signage, florals, and other decor really helps set a fun vibe and draw attention to the theme or color palette.
Centerpieces are an easy and gorgeous way to level up the area. These flowers are from The Little Clover and I’m obsesseddd with how they turned out.
While you’re planning the bridal shower decor, keep the bride’s chair in mind. This is where she’ll sit to open gifts. Decorate it BIG like with a balloon arch to really make her feel like a queen! This is more than a chair, it’s a throne.
Balloon arch courtesy of Dolli’s Design’s
During the bridal brunch, your guests will be mingling and eating and chatting with the bride about her upcoming wedding. It’s always fun to gather people with a bridal-themed game!
Keep these short and completely personalized to your guest of honor. The questions can be about the bride, her relationship with her partner, or about the partner! It’s always fun for everyone to learn more about them.
Playing bridal shower games is the perfect way to break the ice, get everyone laughing, and make the bride feel special.
Allllll the credit to these amazing Kansas City wedding vendors for their help at this styled shoot!
Venue: The Firehouse
Planner: Cake & Champagne Event Planning
Photographer: Natalie Nichole Photography (hey, that’s me!)
Videography: Isbell Creative
Rentals: Supply Event Rentals
Balloon Decor: Dolli’s Design’s
Florals: The Little Clover
Candy Truck: Go Go Candy Co
Cookies + Cupcakes: Kat’s Confections
Hair + Makeup: Lumiere Aesthetics Center
Kansas City is one of the prettiest places in the fall. The crisp wind paired with the warm sun makes outside activities so much more enjoyable. The leaves stay bright fall colors for weeks (my favorite to photograph!) and everyone is soaking up time with their loved ones before the busyness of the holiday season. If you’re a fan of fall, you’ll love these Seven Kansas City Fall Date Ideas. From First Fridays to fruit-picking, we’ve covered it all! Grab your significant other for some quality time. Let’s make some memories!
Is anyone surprised this is first on my list of date ideas? With a 10-acre corn maze and a 10-acre pumpkin patch, this is one of Kansas City’s favorite fall date activities.
The drive down south to Louisburg Cider Mill is beautiful, and the journey is beyond worth it! Their corn maze is always a unique theme, and the cider donuts are *chefs kiss.* Look into their upcoming events to find a day with local vendors, live music, hay wagon rides, and farm animals.
Cider Hill Family Orchard offers tons of delish apple treats to enjoy before you head out into the orchard to pick apples! There are other activities too: pumpkin picking, hayrides, fishing, and lots of photo opportunities. Bonus: leashed dogs are allowed!
Open Saturdays and Sundays, Alldredge Orchards is the perfect pumpkin picking place! They have a hayride, barnyard, and lots of goodies in their rustic barn store. Don’t worry, your leashed dog is allowed here too!
Downtown is always fun on Friday nights but the Crossroads are the place to be for you + your boo on First Fridays. Grab an adult Capri sun from Mean Mule, stop in Parlor for some live music, and peruse through dozens of art galleries. There are always booths to shop unique, local trinkets, and don’t forget about the food trucks!
First Fridays is a classic Kansas City date night! This Fall, the dates are September 3, October 1, and November 5th. Mark your calendars!
If you’ve been in Kansas City for any length of time, chances are you’ve been to the River Market! Every Saturday dozens of vendors gather to showcase their fresh fruits & veggies, homemade bread, specialty salsa, & beautiful bouquets of flowers.
This is a fun Kansas City date if you’re a fan of supporting local businesses and shopping small! After shopping, grab lunch at The Opera House Coffee & Emporium, or take the free street car downtown.
There’s nothing more “Kansas City” than the plaza! The 2021 Plaza Art Fair is held September 24-26th and if you haven’t been before, this is your shot. This year is the 90th anniversary of the art fair! With live music, food stands, art exhibits, and different activities, you and your date won’t be bored.
Spend the afternoon shopping, trying drinks, & supporting small businesses. Pick up dinner from a food stand and eat it while you enjoy a live band. Grab ice cream from Ice Cream BAE in the Made in KC Marketplace to end your evening on a sweet note! This is a Kansas City fall date that you’ll remember for years.
Everyone knows Kansas City is beautiful in the fall. The trees stay yellow and orange for weeks and the weather is perfect. It’s definitely my favorite time for a couples photoshoot!
A photo session is such a cute way to top off your date. I can meet you at any of the places listed above to capture the sweet memories of your fall date! Or do you have another location in mind? Let’s chat about it and make alllll your Kansas City fall date dreams come true.
Follow along on Instagram where I’ll soon release my dates for mini-sessions! These are totally a fan-favorite so I don’t want you to miss them.
Connie and Greg wanted to do a 1920’s inspired photoshoot in Lexington Missouri. I travelled from Kansas City to photograph them all around downtown Lexington and then we headed to Linwood Lawn, a gorgeous venue a few miles away.
We spent the afternoon having fun around Lexington. Stopping where ever our hearts desired or creativity struck. Connie wore a vintage black dress that she paired with a fur coat, cloche hat, and black tights. She looked as if she had travelled through time from the roaring 1920’s to present day.
Connie and Greg have always had a love for all things vintage. They own a bar in Lexington and have filled the walls with old photographs and collectables. They cherish all of the stories that come along with each piece. They find joy in sharing those stories and admiring the beauty in history.
This 1920’s inspired photoshoot was extremely fun to plan. I love when my clients come to me with ideas. We’re able to be collaborative and bounce ideas off of one another. What starts as a simple idea can turn into so much more.
This photoshoot was perfect for Connie and Greg because it was unique and personal to them. It was always more than just a photoshoot. This gave them the opportunity to spend even more time together by creating a vision, choosing outfits, and deciding on locations. They got to be creative together which made it even more fun.
If you have an idea for a photoshoot you’d like to do in the Kansas City area or beyond, fill out my contact form and let’s start the planning process! Let’s step outside the box and bring your vision to life.
If you love the look of Linwood Lawn, check out Amanda and Joe’s wedding for even more images of the beautiful grounds.
In the midst of COVID-19, grooms Seth and Wyatt had to adapt their wedding to follow their state, county, and city guidelines. They planned their summer wedding at 425 downtown in Springfield, MO originally to be in May but then postponed to July.
Seth and Wyatt had always planned their wedding to be kept intimate, just family and close friends. With the threat of the pandemic it made that choice even clearer. They shortened their guest list even further so ensure their 65 guests would be safe and comfortable.
425 Downtown was the perfect venue for their wedding, it was right in the heart of downtown Springfield. It’s a spacious urban venue with red brick walls, exposed dark wooden beams, an in house bar, and a show-stopping chandelier.
Seth and Wyatt kept their decor simple and elegant. Sheer white draping for their alter and timeless white table cloths. Their decor really kept the focus on the venues effortless beauty.
Which in turn, kept the focus on the couple. The grooms planned their day around celebrating their love, and didn’t get caught up in the stress of wedding planning or trying to keep things “traditional” for their summer wedding at 425 Downtown.
They had a joint wedding party of their closest friends. This made their photos extra fun because they all took their photos together instead of having two separate groups. We took photos outside of the Hotel Vandivort which is just a short walk down the street from 425 Downtown.
Wyatt and Seth also walked down the aisle together, which I absolutely love because they are heading into marriage together. Taking these first steps as partners, hand in hand.
I love when couples plan the wedding they want instead of the wedding they think they need to have. It’s important to choose which traditions work for you and your partner and which ones can be forgotten. Don’t be afraid to shake things up, create something new, and make it completely YOU!
Check out how other couples are adjusting their wedding plans due to the coronavirus Change of Plans: Intimate Covid Wedding in Kansas City.
For some people, taking photos at 7am seems crazy. But if you’re willing to get up a little bit earlier, the sun will give you the most amazing light in return. Allison and Todd didn’t have any problem getting up for their maternity session at Shawnee Mission Park. They’re both teachers so they’re used to being up and at em’ before the sun.
The sun was extremely nice to us that Friday morning, we had the most gorgeous golden hour and we were all wrapped up before the summer heat really set in for the day.
Allison and Todd wanted to use the photos from their maternity session at Shawnee Mission Park for their baby announcement. They had been holding onto this secret for a while, once they found out they were having a baby girl they were ready to tell all their friends and family.
We started our session out at the dock, letting the light reflect off the still morning lake. Todd held Allison close and the sun’s warm rays lit up their faces. It truly took “maternity glow” and kicked it up a notch.
After the dock we headed to a big open filled spotted with adorable yellow wildflowers. Allison and Todd brought along their baby girls sonogram and the cutest “baby girl” balloon letters. We took pictures with both and then brought the focus back to just Allison, Todd, and their baby girl.
Maternity sessions are a great way to celebrate a growing family. It’s such an exciting time that should be documented. Photographing the major milestones in peoples lives is what makes my job as a photographer so rewarding. Sharing in these special moments and seeing all joy it brings.
Shawnee Mission Park is such an awesome location for all types of sessions, check out Shawnee Mission Park Couples Photos for other great spots still located in the park.
Anna and James wanted a naturally beautiful location for their summer engagement photos, Burr Oak Nature Center was the perfect choice. Within the park there are tons of great spots for photos. Fields of grass, wild flowers, and the stunning tall trees. It gave us a wide variety of options to mix it up if we wanted to.
Anna and James are getting married at The Hawthorn House in September. Their engagement session was the perfect way for us to get to know each other before their wedding day. Phone calls, Zoom meetings, and quick coffee dates are great, but if you get the chance to have your photographer actual photograph you before your wedding day, you definitely don’t want to pass that up.
Engagement photos give you the opportunity to practice in front of the camera. You get to learn how your photographer interacts with their couples, how the direct, and how they achieve their style. Engagement sessions are also awesome from the photographers perspective because they get to find all of your best angles, notice all the adorable ways you and your partner interact with each other, and they get to hear a little bit more of your love story.
Anna and James have been dating for over nine years! They fell for each other while they were in high school and have been madly in love ever since. They are so ready to get married, they’ve known for a long time that they are meant to be together; they’re excited to make it official.
If you want a great outdoor location for your engagement photos check out these spots that are similar to Burr Oak Nature Center; Shawnee Mission Park, Loose Park, and The Nelson Atkins Museum of Art.
As the sun began to set behind the blooming rose garden, Bridgette and John wrapped up in each others arms and smiled as they looked in each others eyes. It was the perfect summer evening for an engagement session at Loose Park.
Bridgette and John have been dating for two years now. Two years filled with love, laughter, and commitment. The gardens made for a beautiful background for their photos. It represented their growth throughout their relationship and their love blossoming into their new marriage.
Loose Park is a classic location in Kansas City for engagement photos. It’s filled with colorful blooms, stunning fountains, and pretty bridges. Every inch of the park is a photographers dream.
Bridgette, John, and I strolled around the park and had a blast! They are such a fun loving couple. Every photo idea I had, they added so much joy to the photos. John is so good at making Bridgette smile – goofy jokes, tickle attacks, and tons of kisses. Their session was just a peek into their relationship but I can tell their marriage will be strong, being built on the foundation of joy. They always strive to make each other happy and add a little fun to each other’s lives. Even when it’s a relaxing night just hanging out watching Harry Potter at home, there is never a dull moment for these two.
John added a lot of excitement to a very ordinary family dinner event by surprising Bridgette with a breathtaking sparkly ring and promising to love her for the rest of his life.
From the night of their engagement until their wedding next year Bridgette and John will have a lot of special days and they are excited to plan the rest of their lives together. Their summer engagement session at Loose Park was a great way to capture this time of their lives.
Love the look of nature for photos? Shawnee Mission Park is another great option in Kansas City
Amanda and Joe dreamed of a big wedding; imagining all of their family and friends sharing in the love at a gorgeous venue. They were devastated when the coronavirus hit and forced them to change their plans to a more intimate covid wedding in Kansas City.
There were two reasons they didn’t want to wait another whole year until having their wedding. Of course a big part of their decision was that they were too excited to be married already, waiting 12 long months seemed impossible. The second reason was Amanda’s adorable 92 year old grandpa. For as long as Amanda has been planning her wedding day she imagined her loving grandpa walking her down the aisle. They have such an amazing relationship, it would be hard for her to get married without him there as a witness to the ceremony.
“The moment it all hit me was when I was upstairs getting ready and I saw Joe walking in through the window. He was in his suit and I realized he is about to be my husband. We made it, and I felt so much relief.”
It was because of these reasons that they decided to postpone their grand wedding day for May 2021. They’re looking forward to throwing another big party for all of their family and friends at The Harlow but they wouldn’t have traded their intimate covid wedding in Kansas City for anything.
Planning a wedding during a pandemic is definitely stressful. Especially the coronavirus; rules and regulations were changing daily. Amanda and Joe felt like they were thrown every curve ball in the book. So many of their plans got changed, rearranged, and then changed again. Luckily they had family behind them helping take a little weight off of their shoulders. Amanda says she never thought the day would actually come after every hurdle they had to jump over during the planning process.
No matter how many times things had to be changed, Amanda and Joe kept their focus on their future marriage. They wanted their ceremony to reflect them as a couple, from when they first started dating to their first leap into being husband and wife.
“I loved how Joe was looking at me.
He just kept repeating “you are so beautiful” while his eyes were full of tears.
Definitely a moment I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”
During their ceremony I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room, I definitely was tearing up behind the camera and in my mask. There was so much love, and thought put into it. The officient spoke beautifully about Amanda and Joe, he talked about the importance of connection and how much admiration they both have for their families. Even though there were only 10 people, I’ve never been in a room that felt so full. Two families were truly connected with love.
Sometimes when you’re wedding planning you have to make a change of plans. It can be overwhelming, but it’s so important to take a step back and remember not to sweat the small stuff and lean on each other. Once you are up the aisle with the love of your life by your side, nothing else matters. It’s a moment for you two to feel like the only ones in the whole world – soak in that moment while you’re standing up their. This is it, it’s here, you made it. Your marriage is about to begin.
“If anything, wedding planning during a pandemic taught me to be much more go with the flow and embrace everything with a sense of humor. It allowed me to just say “whatever happens, happens.” I know it sounds cliche but what they say is true.”-Amanda
protect our planet – use biodegradable confetti
A key part of having a stress free wedding is having vendors that you trust. Here are the questions you really need to be asking your photographer to guarantee you’ll be taken care of.
Shawnee Mission Park was the perfect location for Jordyn and Austin’s couples photos. The tall grass and the beautiful lake gave us alllllllll the natural summer vibes we could want for their laid-back photoshoot.
Jordyn and Austin are used to taking iphone photos but they wanted to have a professional photo session to remember such a transitional time in their lives. They both have finished up school are getting ready for some big changes; Jordyn is about to start her new job here in Kansas City and in just a few weeks Austin will be moving to Omaha to train for his new job. Jordyn and Austin have known each other since middle school and have been together for three and a half years. This will be their first time being states away. They’ll miss being able to get dressed up and try out new restaurants together for date nights but they know it’ll be all the more meaningful when their together again.
Jordyn and Austin’s Shawnee Mission Park couples photos stunningly documented their love; the way Austin looks at Jordyn when she smiles, or the way Jordyn gently holds Austin’s hand. Subtle ways they express their love for each other.
The key to capturing those intimate and candid moments between you and your partner is to try to forget the camera even exists. Find a photographer that you trust to guide you through poses and ideas that help make you feel comfortable. When you’re relaxed during a photoshoot you’re able to be more carefree. The natural chemistry between you and your partner will shine through and your photographer will be able to capture it all.
click here for even more tips to having the best couples photo session EVER!
A photographer’s camera bag is practically their life line. It holds our most important equipment, those go-tos that we seriously can’t live without. I’m currently packing all my good stuff in a g-raphy bag that I bought off amazon. I love it because it’s a backpack so it’s super easy to throw on my shoulders and keep moving around. It doesn’t look too big but it holds SO MUCH!
My number one thing that I always have is of course, my camera. I use a Canon 5D Mark IV, she’s my baby. She also looks huge because I like to keep a battery pack (holds two batteries instead of one) on my camera just to ensure I’ll have enough charge to last all day long. Then I have my trusty 24-105mm lens and my nifty-fifty lens (50mm). I also pack my Yongnuo YN560 III speedlite for all those tricky lighting situations and my newest addition to my toolkit my MagSphere which helps diffuse my flash to give me a wider more flattering light. My flash was going through a ton of batteries so I have officially made the switch to reusable batteries, I had a few other photog friends recommend the batteries sold at Ikea (I know I was shocked too, who would think ikea would be the place for batteries?) I carry two sets of 4 batteries with me and their little charger so I can always charge on the go.
Another thing that never leaves my bag is my handy SD card holder, I bought it off amazon too and it holds up to 12 SD cards so I can always have a back up. The more SD cards I have, the more amazing photos I can take of my clients. The rest of the stuff in my bag is what I call the “fun stuff” I have a little bag of confetti incase a celebratory photo needs a little more sparkle, an extra white ribbon because you never know when you’ll need it. My absolute favorite things in my camera bag are my Mrs. Box, which is the cutest little light pink velvet ring box, and my Gem Pen which can clean up any stone in a ring to make sure it shines as bright as it can.
The rest of the stuff in my bag is pretty basic, extra cards, my camera battery charger, business cards, and an incase of emergency granola bar (this may or may not be over a year old, but hey if it’s an emergency I’ll still eat it… just don’t tell my mom 😉 )
Magmod -sphere + grid