Tara & Chase | Botanical Garden Elopement
Athens Georgia Wedding Photographer

July 15, 2021

I met Tara & Chase when Chase reached out about gifting Tara a photoshoot with her dog.  During that sweet photoshoot, I remember being in awe of how effortlessly and totally in love Tara & Chase were.  They’re one of those couples that just ooze happiness and joy, and I thought “I really hope I get to photograph them again someday.”  Well needless to say, I was ECSTATIC when they reached out about their wedding.

And I am SO GRATEFUL for the amount of trust they placed in me.  They decided to do a small, intimate wedding just the two of them, and they let me choose the location & timing for the event.  And when the forecast started showing rain, instead of panicking, they called me up and we talked about how we were going to make it super memorable and special, rain or shine.  So they got a couple clear umbrellas, I secured an indoor spot for the ceremony, & then we frolicked blissfully through the botanical gardens on a rainy, yet perfect, morning.  In fact, the rain cooled off the temperature and scared others away so that we had the gardens all to ourselves.

Hands down my FAVORITE moment of the morning was their First Look.  It was super raw and emotional.  My new life goal is to find a man who looks at me the way Chase looks at Tara.  He is so enamored by her, and he even said to me at one point:  “Claire, will you just let me know when you need me to look at you, because otherwise I’m going to be looking at Tara the entire time.” 

Even though this was a small “elopement” of sorts, Tara & Chase still added a lot of meaningful touches and details to tell the story of the day.  Tara made their vow books, boutonnière, and bouquet all by herself.  Her hair pins were made by her stepmom, and they were her “something borrowed” and “something old”… because the hair pin & pearls were what her sister wore on her wedding day, and the fabric was from her grandma’s wedding dress. 

Tara’s shoes were a birthday gift from Chase — a special pair of chucks adorned by Athens artist Jacob Wenzka.  Her engagement ring — a stunning vintage 1920’s art deco ring they stumbled upon.  And their officiant — a dear friend who drove down to Georgia to be a part of their ceremony.

Between Tara & Chase’s adventurous attitudes and their complete trust in me, we put together a truly magical wedding.

I could go on and on about how inspiring this couple is to me, and how much I LOVED their wedding decisions, but I’ll let you look at the photos and see for yourself.  Congrats, Chase & Tara!! 

Dress: Charme Bridal  //  Hair & Makeup: Rachel Carter  //  Custom Art on Chucks: Jacob Wenzka

Claire Diana