Best of 2023: Furry Friends

Today we’re brining you one of our favorite categories in our Best of 2023 series. It’s fluffy, furry, and filled with an enormous amount of aww-factor. Yes, we’re talking about that adorable element of your big day – animals! From dapper dogs to sweet felines and even animals from the farm, this category is stacked with four legged friends that made celebrations extraordinarily un-fur-gettable!

But the excitement doesn’t end there! After you’ve seen our picks, it’s over to you to vote for your favorite in our Readers Choice Award below. 

Cockapoo Cuddles

This adorable cockapoo, Walter, loved being a special part of his parent’s big day at Weatherhead Hollow. What a dapper dog!
 
Photo: Anne Taylor Photography

Pawsome on Camera

These sweet pooches were ready for their close up! Perfectly groomed and all smiles on their parent’s big day, they made sure to work every angle.
 

Radiant Ring Bearer

Have you ever seen a cuter ring bearer? Nigel took his role very seriously when his humans tied the knot at Soule House & Carriage Barn.We’re melting over his sweet smile and leash adorned with colorful flowers.
 
Photo: Sincerely Liz Photography 

First Look Sealed with a Kiss

This couple’s first look was made extra special with the incorporation of their dog. There’s no bigger stamp of approval than a smooch from your pooch!
 

Something Borrowed, Something Chewed

For couples who want to incorporate their furry friend into their special day, but may not be able to physically bring them- look no further! This beautiful cake baked by the couple’s dear friend, included their dog sneakily taking a bite out of tier two. We also love that the couple included polaroids of themselves during their first look to adorn the top!
 
Photo: K. Lenox Photography, Venue: Sugarbush Resort, Florals: A School House Garden

The Flower Pup

You’ve heard of a flower girl but what about a flower pup?! This proud girl’s smile says it all: “my parents are getting married today!”
 

Feline Fine

We’ve officially found the most purrrfect ring bearer! Wedding planner I Dews Design & Events made sure to incorporate Ives not only into the ceremony but also throughout the event’s decor.
 
Photo: Markella Kyprios Photo

Pawsitively Adorable

Spotted: the happiest pup ever! From the itty-bitty tuxedo and bow tie combo to a beaming grin, we’re melting at how cute this dog is.
 

Falling in Puppy Love

This couple’s gorgeous wedding day was made extra special with the incorporation of their smiling corgi, Murray! We love how his bowtie perfectly matches the bride’s bouquet.
 

Party Animal

A true Vermont photobomb! This sweet cow from Landgoes Farm couldn’t resist popping into this couple’s wedding photoshoot.
 

Un-fur-gettable Love

You, me, and dog makes three! You can feel the love radiate from this photo. Cuddles and kisses from your owners, what could be better?
 

Until Fetch Do Us Part

On their special day, the couple’s beloved dog was overwhelmed with joy, its excitement manifesting in endless running about. The furry bundle of energy simply couldn’t stay still as it echoed its owners’ elation.
 

Dressed to the K9s

This charming German Shepherd is all dolled up, sporting a neat tuxedo for his owner’s special wedding day. His loving eyes and huge smile show that he was a cherished part of this celebration!
 
Photo: Coryn Kiefer Photography, Venue: Inn at Grace Farm, Florals: Tipsy Tulip Designs

Fur-ever Love

This stunning photograph of the happy couple, surrounded by lush green grass and basking in the warm glow of the sun, is made all the more special by the presence of their beloved four-legged bestie!
 

Colossal Canine

Felix, the colossal canine of affection, stood impeccably groomed and donning his finest attire, during his parent’s big day. (Not pictured: a champagne dog toy for toasting his owners)
 

Dapper Dynamic Duo

Dynamic duo, Damion and Dyson, couldn’t contain their excitement at their parent’s wedding. This may be the most adorable (and stylish!) case of the zoomies we have ever seen.
 

Sweet Smooch

A little dog with a whole lot of love to give! What better way to mark fur-ever as husband and wife than with a smooch from your favorite four legged friend?
 

Readers Choice Awards

Now that you’ve seen our picks for the best Vermont furry friends in 2023, it’s time for you to vote! We’ll share your top picks for each category at the end of the month.

Planning Your Own Vermont Wedding?

Snag your copy of our Ultimate Wedding Planning Guide  inspiration, advice & guides to plan your very best Vermont wedding! During this month the guide is on sale for only $20.24! 

Sign up our email newsletter to receive updates when new stories drop! 

Best of 2023: Elopements

Elopements let the couple focus on their connection and commitment, without distractions or expectations from others, making for a truly enchanting and romantic celebration. The below celebrations are proof! Here are some of our favorite moments from Vermont elopements in 2023.

But the excitement doesn’t end there! After you’ve seen our picks, it’s over to you to vote for your favorite in our Readers Choice Award below. 

Slope-side Vows

In a mix of romance and adrenaline, this couple chose to take their love to literal new heights with a snowy, slope-side elopement. We love this sweet snap taken on the ski lift on the way up to Killington’s summit.
 

A Fairytale Ending

Choosing to elope with a hint of fairy tale charm, this couple decided to rent a Vermont castle on Airbnb for their romantic nuptials! This beautiful location in Irasburg Vermont transformed their simple elopement into an enchanting, intimate wedding experience right out of a storybook.
 

Autumnal Romance

These brides chose the serene location of Lake Willoughby for their fall elopement. The cozy affair was perfectly adorned with warm flannel blankets, glowing lanterns, seasonal florals, and pumpkins, bringing their enchanting autumn wedding to life!
 

Vows with a View

* Sigh * This image perfectly exudes that just married feeling! In the picturesque setting of Middlebury, Vermont, this couple exchanged vows in a classic and timeless celebration of love.
 

Toasting to Forever

This vibrant, elopement photoshoot utilized classic designs with a mix of peachy-pink, and coral hues against soft light blue accents! Styled by wedding planner I Dews Design & Events it’s an elegant yet whimsical garden party we’d love to attend!
 
Photo: Anne Mientka

Love in the Snow

This couple braved chilly winter temps for their special day together! The dusting of snow on the nearby mountains, the bride’s veil flowing in the wind and a warm embrace – there is something so special about a wintertime elopement!
 

Dancing in the Rain

2023’s trend of rain didn’t stop this couple from fully embracing their love story. (In fact, the moody skies and mud added to it!) This couple giggled and danced in the rain during their misty photoshoot and we can’t imagine anything more romantic!
 

Readers Choice Awards

Now that you’ve seen our picks for the best Vermont elopements in 2023, it’s time for you to vote! We’ll share your top picks for each category at the end of the month.

Planning Your Own Vermont Wedding?

Snag your copy of our Ultimate Wedding Planning Guide  inspiration, advice & guides to plan your very best Vermont wedding! During this month the guide is on sale for only $20.24! 

Sign up our email newsletter to receive updates when new stories drop! 

Meet Wedding Photographer, Arielle Thomas Photography

Are you looking for wedding photos that stand out and capture the true spirit of your special day? Arielle of Arielle Thomas Photography is a fun and colorful wedding photographer with a passion for taking timeless and vibrant photos.

Arielle loves working with couples who aren’t afraid to be bold and think outside of the box. With her help, you can ensure your wedding photos reflect your unique personalities and the joy of your special day. Keep reading to learn more about Arielle and her work below.

How did you get into wedding photography?

My origin story is somewhat unique. I was working at a camera store, and I made a ton of connections through customers there. I was fired from the camera store in 2016, and launched my business the next day with roughly $200 to my name. I really had to hustle to make it happen, as I had no real financial support system to lean on! 

I had made friends with some wedding photographers and started second shooting with them. I’d scour the internet for work, doing anything I could to pick up jobs, and then it all took off! I continued to develop my skills and leaned into my natural talent for capturing images. And now here I am!

How would you describe your photography style?

I have a very fun approach to wedding photography. I tell my clients that I immerse myself into their wedding and become a part of it, keeping my eyes peeled for all the cool moments. 

I would describe my style classic with a bright, bold edge. I joke that I was taught all the rules, and learned how to break them to create galleries my couples love!

What inspires your work?

Location, location, location! Nothing gets me going like an epic backdrop. (I am also a mega hopeless romantic!) I originally started out as a fashion photographer, so my inspiration is also derived from that.

Any special tips for couples for choosing or working with a wedding photographer?

It’s important to vibe with your photographer. I love working with couples who are fun and goofy –  it’s no fun if you don’t get along and the couple doesn’t feel comfortable.

What’s your favorite moment during a wedding?

Sunset hour is such a great reprieve. It’s a moment for us to escape allows the couple to have a quiet moment together.

What’s your favorite thing to do in VT? 

I love to take a dip in one of my secret swim spots! And The Hippie Chickpea in Montpelier is a must visit. 

If you weren’t a wedding photographer what would you do?

No idea! I am a great dancer, and almost double majored in photography and dance … so maybe a dancer! That or some kind of high class jewel thief. 😉 

What’s a song that always gets you on the dance floor?

It’s a tie between Billie Jean by Michael Jackson and Fireball by Pitbull!

Thanks, Arielle! Learn more about Arielle Thomas Photography by visiting her profile in the Vermont Weddings Vendor Guide.

A Dreamy Vermont Farm Wedding at Lareau Farm Inn

For couples looking for an idyllic countryside wedding, Lareau Farm Inn in Waitsfield, Vermont is the perfect venue. Nestled in a picturesque Mad River Valley and surrounded by beautiful rolling hills, this charming farm is the perfect backdrop for a dreamy summer wedding. It also the birthplace of beloved Vermont staple, American Flatbread — yum!

Couple Brittany and Max had their special day at Lareau Farm Inn on a beautiful July day and Arielle Thomas Photography was there to capture every detail. Continue reading to see more photos and learn all about this colorful wedding.

A Chill Vermont Wedding in The Mad River Valley

Brittany and Max had a laidback July wedding with their closest family and friends, with a focus on having fun together.

“I loved capturing this wedding because you can tell Brittany and Max are super in love with just the way they look at each other. I guarantee their cheeks were sore from smiling so much!” says photographer Arielle Thomas.

The day was filled with sunshine, laughter and loads of high-energy dancing. (And when guests didn’t want to dance, they could easily transition to lawn games, such as corn hole!)

And we can’t overlook the small, sentimental details. Both Brittany’s  bouquet charm and ‘love dad’ embroidery on her wedding veil honored her late father so he was there in spirit. (A beautiful example of how to honor loved ones at your wedding) The table numbers during the reception also featured photos of Brittany and Max over the years.

To round out an already sweet day, The Goose Chase Cake Design created a dreamy dessert table to keep guests fueled for an evening of dancing!

Vendors:

Venue: Lareau Farm Inn,  Photographer: Arielle Thomas Photography, Florist: Cedar Circle Farm, Dessert: The Goose Chase Cake Design, Videographer: Josh Wroblewski, Guestbook “Phone”: FeteFone.

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