November 18, 2021

Curt & Rachel | Raspberry Plain Manor, Virginia Wedding

I’m Stephanie, a wedding + lifestyle photographer based in Colorado Springs, Colorado and Warrenton, Virginia. Whether I’m by the mountains of Colorado or Virginia, my soul feels at home, surrounded by rural living and the raw beauty of nature. I genuinely love what I do, and feel so passionate to share the enthusiasm and joy of these celebrations with you!

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Curt & Rachel | Raspberry Plain Manor, Virginia Wedding

Curt and Rachel FINALLY had the wedding of their dreams!! After the pandemic brought a lot of stress on their original plans last year, they were put in the unfortunate circumstance to postpone. I was so sad that I wasn’t available to photograph their new wedding date — But we worked together to have Michelle Lieb step in my place and photograph their wedding at Raspberry Plain Manor!

It’s hard to believe that I photographed Curtis and Rachel TWO years ago for their engagement session in Old Town Alexandria! They were so incredibly sweet during our time together, and I loved hearing the same thing from Michelle after she photographed their wedding day! 🙂 And speaking of their wedding day — They looked INCREDIBLE! I love that Rachel wore a fairytale dress that just screamed, “twirl me!” HAHA! And Michelle took advantage of it because some of my favorite photos of them involved showing off the dress!! Check out their fairytale day documented by Michelle (edited by me) below!!!

Curt & Rachel | Raspberry Plain Manor, Virginia Wedding


Prepping for the Ceremony.

While Curt and Rachel were in their separate quarters, they were just steps away from each other! But they wouldn’t dare see each other before the first look so it wasn’t a problem that a door or two separated them. 🙂 Rachel had already shared a gift and letter with Curt … And talk about a GIFT! She gave him an electric guitar!!!! Sayyyy what?! So fun!!! Curt made sure that not only his gift (YSL bracelet) left her speechless… but his impressionable, sentimental letter. I love a letter exchange — Whether it was exchanged on the wedding day or just before, it’s something worth cherishing forever!!! Alex and I keep our wedding day letters (as well as anniversary) inside our album so we see them every year when we reminisce our wedding day. <3

I love how one of a kind Rachel’s wedding dress is from Zoya Atelier, especially with back jewelry!! She was particularly excited about it, and it was documented so well in the photos!! Also, her hair and makeup (by Updo Specialist and Makeup by Shirin) fit the fairytale look perfectly!!! After she was ready to see Curt, she got to sneak in a special moment with her parents, and I love their reactions!! And when Curt was dressed and ready, it was time for their first look!!!

The First Look.

For YEARS now, they waited for this moment… To finally see each other dressed up for their wedding day and become Mr. and Mrs.! I know nerves were high just before their first look, but I’m sure it was all washed away as soon as they came in for that first hug! And looking at the photo below, I can FEEL the love! 🙂

When we had our final meeting, they talked about how much they loved the grounds around the manor, including the gardens and the swing! So they wandered around enjoying each other’s company while being documented just before their wedding party came outside to join them on a perfect September day!!! I’m SO happy they had a picture-perfect day after waiting another year!!! 🙂

Their Best Friends.

Curt and Rachel had their wedding party join them outside for photos in the field. It was a pretty large group — NINE on each side!!! But everyone looked AMAZING — The guys kept it classic with the black suit and the girls wore long, flowy dresses in all different styles.

The Ceremony.

Curt and Rachel gathered their families and friends in the back of the manor for their ceremony. One of my favorite officiants (Wedding Ceremonies by Jeff) officiated their wedding — He’s SO good making everyone laugh while also making the ceremony personal/meaningful!! And I love the photo of Rachel laughing below!!!

After their vow and ring exchange, Jeff pronounced them … FINALLY … as husband and wife!! Not only did Curt kiss Rachel, but he also did the Prince Charming move and swooped her down for their first kiss! Seriously looks effortless – Kudos! Haha! Then they were off to kick off their celebration!!!

Mr. & Mrs.!!!

But before joining their party, they celebrated privately in the golden light! Some of my FAVORITE photos from the day!!! I’m glad they took some time from their cocktail hour for these dreamy portraits. <3 Curt and Rachel, you rocked it!!!

The Details.

Being that the Raspberry Plain Manor has a HUGE ballroom, Curt and Rachel managed to fill it up quickly with the number of guests they invited! But the ballroom doesn’t need too much decorating because … I mean, check it out below! It’s already GRAND with the huge windows, hardwood floors, and the beautiful chandeliers! Affordable Arrangements created florals for each table at different heights to create visual interest around the room. While the candles created a romantic ambiance when the room darkened after the sun set. For dessert by Gala Cuisine, they offered a variety of little pastries as well as the traditional cake, of course! And then for a late night treat — They had Taco Bell which was a little surprise from Curt and Rachel! I know my husband would be ALL about that! HAHA!

The Reception.

Rachel and Curt had a grand entrance ready to show off their dance moves! Seriously, looking through their party made me wish I could’ve been there to help celebrate!! It looked like a BLAST! But before their party, they enjoyed special dances with each other, their parents, a few funny/embarrassing speeches, and a delicious dinner provided by Gala Cuisine!

Everyone was anxious to break the ice on the dance floor so Dominion Wedding Entertainmentquickly got the reception moving to the PARTY! And it didn’t seem like it took a lot to make this group dance … Curt and Rachel, I can feel the energy through these shots by Michelle!!! You all look like so much FUN! Haha! I keep trying to guess the song in each photo, but I feel like you all could make any song dance-worthy! Maybe you all could gather again next year for your one-year anniversary for another party, and I can come document/dance with you all? HAHA!

The evening came quickly to an end, but just before the sparkler exit, the guys gathered around Rachel for one last entertaining performance! HAHA! The best!!! Then family and friends gathered outside to wish them off on their married way! 🙂 It looked like a perfect day!!!

Thank You!!

THANK YOU, Curt and Rachel, for having Michelle document your beautiful wedding day at Raspberry Plain Manor!!! I’m SO bummed I wasn’t able to celebrate with you all, but GOSH… It looked like a BLAST! I’m happy that you were able to have the wedding of your dreams — You deserved it!!! CONGRATS!!!!


Thanks to the vendors who made this happen!!

Venue: Raspberry Plain Manor
Photographer: Stephanie Messick Photography | Associate Photographer: Lieb Photographic LLC
Hair: Devon Baltimore Updo Specialist
Makeup: Make Up by Shirin
Caterer: Gala Cuisine
Florist: Affordable Arrangements
DJ: Dominion Wedding Entertainment
Stationery: Zola
Dress: Zoya Atelier
Officiant: Wedding Ceremonies by Jeff
Photo Booth: Alist Photobooths
Transportation: RMA Chauffeured Transportation



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