Sweet Lovin’ Wedding Contest was co-produced by Simon of Capture Productions and me of Michele Mateus Photography.

It’s wonderful to give back to your community, and so Simon of Capture Productions and I came up with the idea of gifting one winning couple a complimentary elopement package of an estimated $9,500 value! Our favourite part was reading all the Sweet Lovin’ stories that came in – it was incredibly fun, and often funny!

Once we had the idea we knew we needed to bring together an outstanding vendor team to make this day amazing.

Right from the start, our team showed strength. Rosa Pearson stepped up to create a brand for Sweet Lovin’ that said it all! Fun. Energetic. Timeless! All important things when you want to run an annual contest – and see your brand grow! After that, it was all about getting the message out and that we did. Stories started rolling in.

We had a goal. Draw one winning couple. We were so glad it was a draw because it would have been hard to pick a winning story.

We met at a mutual friend’s birthday party in 2011 when we were 19 years old! We fell in love hard and fast and ended up moving away together only 6 months after we met. Taylor started his career and I ended up getting pregnant. 19&20 been together for 8 months, living so far away from our families, and pregnant!

Fast forward 9 months and on July 23rd 2012 we welcome our beautiful baby girl Hanna Violet into this world! We quickly became parents and homeowners and life changed in such crazy and amazing ways! I lived the stay at home mom life and taylor worked away in camp. It was hard, but so good.

We decided we wanted to have another baby and 2 short years after Hanna was born we welcomed Genevieve Leontine into our family in a beautiful, magical home birth on July 13th 2014. That experience changed my life. Since then, Taylor has been able to stop working away (2016), we have bought and renovated our second home (2015), we bought a dog(2015), have gone on some amazing family trips, and are now expecting our third baby in May 2018!

We have planned and had to cancel our wedding 3 times now. I have our rings, the dress… we have just always had something come up financially and haven’t been able to commit. I have always wanted to just elope with our girls. I am not a huge fan of huge traditional weddings, the thought makes me nervous, so a small intimate gathering is all I need.

I feel like we have had so much pressure from our families over the 7 years we have been together to get married it almost has fallen completely off our radar because it feels like it would be more for everyone else and not us, who it really should be all about.

I’d love to win this package and run away for the weekend with my little family and finally be able to say I share the same last name as my kids. We would be forever grateful as this isn’t something we can afford on our own now that Taylor no longer works camp work. Thank you for the opportunity!”

There wasn’t a dry eye in the house the evening of their wedding. It was pretty special. We knew we couldn’t have asked for a more perfect couple (or in this case, family) to win our first annual Sweet Lovin’ contest.

An extra-big thank goes out to Hasti of La Vista Events. She jumped on board as our wedding coordinator and then took our idea and ran with it. From cake pops for the kiddos to a limo service she organized it all. She even found elegant and simple trimmings from the Little Wedding Shoppe which added a beautiful touch to the day (and to the photographs, of course 😉).

Keeping kids entertained is key in family elopements! And that’s why I am grateful we had Tiffany of La Vista Events working with us. She was THE ONLY reason we were able to get images of the bride and groom enjoying a little “alone” time with me and Simon.

Another highlight was spoiling the kids with Kinder Surprise, stickers and Pez.

When Simon and I first spoke to Sophia she was so shocked that they actually won and she shared their story and their style, we knew right away that we couldn’t have asked for a better couple to win (is it ok to kinda say that?!)

Sophia and her beautiful family live in Comox on Vancouver Island. They’re outdoorsy. They love just being in the woods. She shared this sentiment with Simon and me — once she got over the initial shock that she’d actually won. As soon as she said, woodsy, outdoorsy Simon was already picking the perfect spot for their elopement to take place.

While these two (and their kids) eloped, they weren’t without family. In the time leading up to the wedding day, one of Sophia’s aunts contacted me. She was thankful for such an amazing gift to a niece that she loved dearly. I offered up an idea – a way to connect with Sophia and her family on their elopement. She agreed. So on the evening of the ceremony, we presented beautiful letters from friends and family to the bride and groom. It was lovely.

Simon chose the location. Although it was quite the hike for little legs, the space was breathtaking.

Did I mention the cake pops were a big hit too?!

Eloping? Give me a shout to talk about photography elopement packages. And of course, I can help with vendor referrals.

P.s. I love that Sophia was open to breastfeeding on the beach with her newest little one while being photographed. It was a tender moment for them both and extra special on her wedding day!

Marloe was born a month before the wedding and Sophia’s sister joined in on the evening to help out with her. Kids names: Marloe Florence Long was born on April 23rd and joins big sisters Hanna and Genevieve.

A note from Michele Hobson, our florist:

When I talked to Sophie she explained that she and Taylor really appreciated the pacific north west aesthetic, using lots of seasonal and local foliage and textures along with soft and lush blooms with pops of colour. I knew our backdrop would be full of deep emerald greens from the mountains and lake so wanted to add pops of coral and deep garnet red for that pop. I used peonies, fuchsia, lisianthus, bunny tail grass, ferns and foraged poplar and tied it all with plant dyed silk ribbon in deep coral.

A final BIG BIG THANK YOU to our amazing vendor team! Without them Sweet Lovin’ couldn’t have happened and we are so grateful to have worked on this together with them all!
Amazing Vendors

Capture Productions – Husband & Wife team Simon & Melissa
Blossom & Vine Floral Company – Michelle Hobson
Young Hip & Married – Shawn Miller
La Vista Events – Hasti & Tiffany
Goddess Beauty – Harleen Deol
Jaconde Patisserie – Behnaz
Nite Owl Limo Services
The Little Wedding Shoppe

flowers girls
flower girls
daddy & daughter's portraits
daddy & daughter's portrait
sisters embracing
bride & groom
bride & groom elopement ceremony
bride & groom
bride & groom
bride & groom
portrait of a bride & groom
bride & groom
bride & groom portrait
flowers girls
flower girl portrait
bride & groom cutting a wedding cake
bride & groom cutting a wedding cake
bride, groom, and flower girls
bride, groom & flower girls
nursing mother portrait
nursing mother portrait
bride & groom portrait
bride & groom
bride & groom on the beach
bride & groom portrait
bride & groom portrait
bride & groom with a limousine
bride & groom in a limousine