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I'm a branding photographer living in Charleston, South Carolina, a lover of eating strawberries, and my obsession is teaching others how to live a life they love.

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Our Intimate Charleston Wedding

Aug 6

This past July, Hunter and I got married in an intimate Charleston wedding ceremony! The coronavirus pandemic forced us to postpone our original wedding date like so many other couples this year. We were devastated to pause all of our plans only a week before the big day in March. But of course, we knew it was the right decision to protect those we love most. Since getting married in the interim, we’ve realized the many perks of having an intimate wedding!

Back in March when we postponed, we had already finalized every wedding detail. Luckily, all of our vendors were willing and able to postpone along with us to October. We postponed again to June 2021 when we realized the pandemic was not going to be “over” by then. Completely changing our wedding was out of the question, so our only option was to postpone until we felt we could have the original wedding we planned. Besides the logistics of vendor contracts and date availability, we had our hearts set on the original vision of the day and wanted as many guests as possible to feel completely comfortable attending.

Although we weren’t sure it could happen, Hunter and I still wanted to get legally married this year. We were so ready, and the thought of waiting over a year was pretty painful. But, we had a lot of factors to consider with the pandemic. Coronavirus cases and deaths sharply increased starting mid-June in Charleston. Some family members, including Hunter, are considered high risk. We had no interest in putting anyone in danger of contracting COVID. My sister and brother-in-law would also have to drive over 15 hours to get to Charleston. Luckily, our families were more than willing to quarantine before we all came together. They also enjoyed getting out of their normal routines at home!

Our Charleston wedding venue and vendors

When considering a location for our intimate Charleston wedding, Zero George hotel instantly came to mind. Hunter and I stayed in 2017 for a staycation, and we felt at home the entire time. Four historic homes converted into 16 hotel rooms and an award-winning restaurant comprise the hotel. Inside the grounds, canopies of greenery cover cozy brick courtyards. Along with their COVID safety protocols, I knew Zero George would be the perfect place for a safe outdoor ceremony.

We had just three Charleston wedding vendors: our officiant Doug Farmer, our florist Lily of Flowershop, and my dear friend and photographer Gayle Brooker. I can’t thank them enough for making our intimate ceremony as safe and special as it could be!

Emily Kotarski custom designed my dress and veil. It felt so special to have a dress that was one-of-a-kind! My necklace is from my sweet photography client Grace + Hudson Jewelry, my earrings are from BHLDN, and my shoes are from Cole Haan. For this ceremony, I did my own nails using Dazzle Dry, my own makeup, and my sister did my hair!

It was definitely strange not having our extended families and friends at the wedding. But if all goes to plan, our June 2021 wedding will be so relaxed! We’ve already done the never-ending planning, nerve-wracking first look, and the tear-jerking ceremony. All we have to do in June is celebrate everyone coming together. Bonus: I get to wear my dress twice!

Bride and groom posing at Zero George hotel downtown Charleston, SC
Bride walking down the stairs at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
Bride wearing a mask to prevent the spread of coronavirus
Bride posing in a courtyard at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
Bridal wearing a veil and holding a bouquet in a courtyard
Brightly colored bridal bouquet with whites, corals, soft pinks, and greens.
Groom in a tux walking on a porch at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride lifts up her veil during a first look with her groom
A bride and groom hold hands during their first look
A groom smiles at his bride during their first look
A bride and groom hold hands during their first look at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom kiss
A bride and groom laughing and kissing on a porch at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride with a braided updo posing with her brightly colored bouquet
A bridal bouquet made by florist Flowershop in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom kiss at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom walk together in a courtyard in Charleston, SC
A bride smiling at her groom
A bride and groom walking by the Gaillard Center in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom chatting and adjusting the bride's veil
A bride and groom holding each other  on their wedding day
A bride and groom kissing under an archway at the Gaillard Center in Charleston, SC
A family wedding portrait with the bride and groom
A family wedding portrait with the bride and groom
A family wedding portrait with the bride and groom
Bride Abby Murphy and her groom Hunter pose together at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride and her father preparing to walk down the aisle
A bride and her father walking down the aisle
A groom and wedding guests watching the bride and her father walk down the aisle
A bride and her father standing at the altar
A bride and groom holding hands during their intimate Charleston wedding ceremony at Zero George hotel
A groom reads his vows to his bride during their wedding ceremony
A bride and groom holding hands during their intimate Charleston wedding ceremony at Zero George hotel
A groom places a wedding ring on his bride's finger
A bride and groom kiss during their intimate wedding ceremony at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom hold their hands up in celebration before they walk down the aisle as husband and wife
A bride and groom holding hands and smiling after they've walked down the aisle together
A bride and groom holding champagne in a courtyard
A bride and groom hold up champagne to cheers after they've just gotten married
Wedding guests wearing masks to prevent the spread of coronavirus give a thumbs up to the newly married bride and groom
The bride and groom do a cheers with their family with champagne and cocktails
A bride and groom and their wedding guests gather in a courtyard for cocktail hour
A groom smiles at the photographer in a candid moment during cocktail hour
A stylish couple smiling together during a wedding cocktail hour
A bride and groom's hands while sitting next to each other, showcasing their new wedding rings
A bride and groom kissing and walking in a courtyard at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom holding each other after getting married at Zero George hotel in Charleston, SC
A bride and groom as they walk away into an intimate courtyard
A bride and groom kiss, wrapped in the bride's veil
A bride and groom pose together in the courtyard at Zero George hotel
A bride and groom pose together in the courtyard at Zero George hotel
A bride and groom exit their intimate Charleston wedding reception at Zero George hotel

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comments +

  1. Katie Harris says:

    Such a beautiful day celebrating such a great couple! Congratulations and love!

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