Wedding photographers Brooke and Tavis wanted to do their own wedding differently. So they took eight of their closest friends to Iceland where they eloped overlooking the ocean. Their friend Ryan officiated the ceremony, Samm Blake capture the magic and Luke Lindgren filmed the day.
“Like all good modern day love stories, Facebook played its role in how we met”, Brooke told me. “We are both photographers and ran in the same circles. I have to admit, I lied and said I was in desperate need of new headshots… all so I could get to know him better. We became best friends first and then lovers. I have never felt luckier to have both a lover and best friend as my husband.”
“We chose Iceland because in 2007 I saw a documentary by Sigur Ros called Heima, which is Icelandic for ‘home’,” she continued. “I always said if I was ever to marry again… we would go get lost in that magical place and start our journey as husband and wife there. We had just a handful of our closest friends with us and spent a amazing week together exploring the countryside. We didn’t have a theme at all. There was a lot of personal symbolism for us though – the contrast of fire and ice and extremes in nature.”
For both of them, the ceremony was the most poignant part of the day. “Seeing him for the first time was my favourite moment”, Brooke remembered. “I don’t think I had ever been so nervous in my entire life. While getting ready I struggled with feeling like I could control my nervous ticks. It was nothing to do with my amazing husband but more so my past experiences with love and relationships creeping in. I had never felt more vulnerable. However once I finally reached Tavis a sense of safety, peace and calm overwhelmed me. He’s my home and having that moment on that day is something I will never forget.”
The bride wore a one-of-a-kind, custom made emerald green dress, which looked way too perfect with her fiery red hair. It didn’t all go perfectly to plan though. “At the time I wasn’t thrilled about this particular event, but now I can laugh about the irony of some hiccups with my gown. Picture this: My gown designer was unable to build in a bra as I had hoped. So I just planned to tape them in place. The morning of our wedding my bridesmaids and I drove around until we found the Icelandic version of Home Depot and bought different types of tape – industrial strength.”
“I later learned that while I was getting my hair and make up done my bridesmaids had been on YouTube learning the art of boob taping! With a little effort we created a duck tape built in bra. Lets just say I had to sneak away during the reception to painfully and slowly pull off their creation! Sexy, no? So that didn’t quite go as hoped, but I am forever grateful to my amazing bridesmaids for helping me through it!”
After the ceremony and photos, the wedding party had a meal in the rented accommodation that they were staying in. “Catering in the middle of nowhere Iceland is nearly impossible. But we kept our bellies happy with a local shop which served yummy veggie burgers and fries to go. We also has cheese plates and bread with local jams. Our cake was from a local bakery. We had eaten there the day we arrive and tried their cake. I don’t even really like sweets but instantly fell madly in love and asked if we could get one made for our wedding. Sixty bucks later I had the most amazing cake anyone had ever tasted. It was like girl scout cookie crumble, mint and thick rich caramel all in one amazing bite.”
While the couple’s biggest expense was flying their friends halfway across the world for their dream wedding, they saved money by avoiding a lot of, if not all, wedding traditions. “Forgetting all the fluff saved us lots of money”, the bride explained. “Its easy to blow the budget on those little details but for us, we just wanted to enjoy the natural beauty of Iceland. One of the most important things to me was that we all DANCED. And dance we did. The girls even ran outside in the dark barefoot to frolic under the stars. To me that was magic. There is nothing I’d change about our wedding. I loved it all so much. There are always things that could have gone smoother like the duck tape boobs but it was our day; duck tape, stars, dancing take-out food and all.”