meaghan + chris | surprise wedding at a cottage in wakefield

When you're 27 and a wedding photographer, your girlfriends are ALWAYS looking for the latest scoop when it comes to anything wedding related. I excitedly told the girls that I booked something totally and completely different...a wedding where no-one except the bride, the groom, and the bride's brother knew it was a wedding. 

That's right, a SURPRISE WEDDING was on the calendar for 2017 and coming faster than a freight train. They were dying when I couldn't tell them who it was for, but I felt it was my duty to keep as tight-lipped as possible! 

And now that the surprise is out of the bag, I am SO excited to share the story with you today!! 

This beautiful card was mailed out to Meaghan and Chris' closest family and friends, inviting them to an engagement party at a cottage in Wakefield. When I asked Meaghan how they would know to dress up a little, she assured me everyone would be in cocktail attire. And I know what you're all thinking after that episode of HBO's Girls, what if someone wore white?! Meaghan assured me that would be hilarious and she secretly hoped it would happen. 

Only a handful of times have I seen a bride and groom get ready together. It was so sweet to see them laughing and hanging out like a regular weekend morning, except with suits and ties and wedding gowns. 

Seriously so fun to style the his & hers side by side -- I never get to do that!

This bouquet by Blumenstudio was perfectly tailored to match the "wedding" invitation.

We decided to do the portrait session before the guests would arrive, so that they could have more time to enjoy the reception.  


I remember these few minutes so clearly. We were braving the tiny bit of rain (they seriously couldn't care less...) and watching the time carefully because it was possible that guests could arrive at any point. Between camera clicks we listened for tires on the gravel road. 

And then I asked them to run for a photo... 

Which turned into actually hearing a car driving down the road. They BOOKED IT for the backdoor of the cottage and made it in there without getting caught. If anyone had spotted them dressed like a bride and groom, the whole surprise would have been over!

Meaghan said this is her new favourite photo. 

Up in the master bedroom, Meaghan and I waited for text updates from Chris downstairs. He was keeping us informed of guests as they arrived, telling Meaghan that people were starting to wonder where she was. She ran the shower, then the blowdryer, weaving a web of lies that made us laugh while we drank cider and tried to be super hush-hush.

Meaghan and Chris had asked Andries and Dana to be in their wedding party, for a wedding that they thought would happen in August of 2018. This little surprise moment was so fun :) 

And Dana called Meaghan out for lying to her for months! 

A quick shot before the big reveal. Dana and Andries walked downstairs and no one was the wiser. When Dana grabbed her bouquet, the first guest did a double take... 

A few glances over by the stairs, followed by a couple shrieks, some hand-over-mouth surprised faces, and within 30 seconds everyone was caught up. 

That look of it all being so worth it... 

Meaghan and Chris exchanged rings and said their vows, and before everyone knew it they were holding up a glass of champagne and toasting the newlyweds!

And the cake that once said "engaged.."

Was replaced with a fitting new topper that was handmade by the bride herself...

Some of the happiest portraits ever coming at you. Something about the surprise made everyone just so stress-free. 

After a catered dinner and a few more drinks, Meaghan and Chris had their first dance as husband and wife. 

This day was magical and memorable and highly entertaining. It was an honour to be in on the surprise and to witness something different after all these years. Meaghan & Chris -- I am so excited that you can FINALLY let the secret out and celebrate your marriage! All my love guys! <3 


Makeup: Erin Best
Florals: BlumenStudio
Bride's Dress: BCBG from Encore Bridal
Bridal Accessories: Sarah Walsh Bridal
Menswear: Jiash Wu
Venue: AirBnB in Wakefield, QC


  1. Such a great idea! No expectations. No stress. Pure bliss. Such a cute couple!! And an amazing cottage!

  2. Beautiful! A wedding story I look forward to hearing retold for many happy years to come. Chris and Meaghan you are a fabulous couple.


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