Two brides kissing with sparklers

New Year’s Elopement in the Grand Rapids Woods

“And when I am with you, everything feels familiar. Like two people finding love after a lifetime of watching it slip through their hands.” – Robert M. Drake

This winter elopement in Grand Rapids, Michigan was a perfect celebration of love and life.

A New Year’s Eve Elopement

Marie and Kayla were planning their wedding for New Year’s Eve 2020. They had to reschedule because of the pandemic laws regarding indoor events. I reached out to see if they wanted to do a portrait session that day, instead. So they could still celebrate, in a way, on their original date.

One thing led to another, and after some thought, they decided to go ahead and elope on Dec 31st, with a small handful of close loved ones in attendance. I helped them choose a location, and it turned out to be GORGEOUS!

Winter Forest Vibes

We found this stick lean-to thing that someone had already put together, and we decorated it to make a perfect forest ceremony backdrop. Marie and Kayla did “rock-paper-scissors” to see who would read their vows first.

After the ceremony, I said a couple of obligatory sentences- “under the power vested in me…etc.” And then I made their marriage legal by signing the marriage license. Did you know I’m an ordained minister? I don’t do whole marriage ceremonies, because I can’t do that AND photograph it. But I’m happy to help couples who want to do their own ceremony!

Enjoying the Forest

The guests parted and we headed back into the woods for a champagne toast and portraits. The quiet woods and the snowy trails were so beautiful! I’m still swooning over the atmosphere of this Michigan forest in the winter! Can you believe this is just minutes from downtown Grand Rapids?

Anyway, check out Marie and Kayla’s elopement story. I can’t wait for their formal party next winter!

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Lume Photography is a documentary elopement and wedding photographer based in Michigan, traveling worldwide. Behind the camera you’ll find me (Andrea)- a girl who loves animals, the wilderness, and love stories. I believe in magic, soulmates, and the hidden forces of energy that connect everything and everyone in the universe. My passion is documenting the moments, emotions, and connection between two souls in love, in wild places.

My home base is located in SE Michigan, but my second home is Northern Michigan. I’m frequently visiting Traverse City, Marquette & the Upper Peninsula. I’ve traveled all over, including Arizona, Colorado, Costa Rica, Scotland, and beyond to photograph wild elopements and small destination weddings.

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8 Comments

  1. How very sweet! I love how they incorporated existing natural elements in their snowy elopement. These images are so loving. :)

  2. These have such a cinematic feel to them! I’ve always wanted to photograph a snowy elopement. You totally nailed these!

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