Nick & Molly are no Stranger to my lens, or my website
By chance in 2019 Molly e-mailed me to book her and Nick's Engagement photos. She is a co-worker of my sister-in-law Liz and we actually were sitting next to each other at Liz's baby shower with me unaware that she was my future client. Today in 2022 I have seen these two through their wedding milestones and we have created this connection that I am very grateful for. "You're our photographer for life," Molly laughs, yet not kidding at all as we sit down for their interview. I had an idea to start interviewing my Wedding clients to showcase more of their wedding photos, but we paired this chat with a lifestyle session as well, since Molly launched a stationary line and needed me to capture some of her new products - it all lined up perfectly.
Nick and Molly met in high school but became a couple their Junior Year in college. Molly attended the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia, Nick, The University of Albany. At a friend's summer party it was choreographed for Nick and Molly to be left alone while he taught her to play pool (which is the oldest trick in the book, is it not?) and they've been an item ever since. Both are now 29, (double) married, and are starting the rest of their lives together. Nick is the owner of Preferred Events which is a party rental company and Molly is an artist who works a day job while also producing beautiful paintings that she introduces as collections on her website. You can own her art as stationary now, Whalen Design is a brand you shouldn't sleep on. Both of these creative people have entrepreneural goals and spirits, but are a little more opposite in overall personality. Molly is a more reserved, quieter type person with Nick being very extroverted and charismatic. He gravitates towards grand gestures and the element of surprise, while Molly likes to know what happens next - which leads us to the story of their engagement.
"I planned the entire thing in one day,"
was the response that Nick gave me when I asked how they got engaged. The Whalen family was taking a Disney vacation and Nick decided at the eleventh hour what was going to go down and make the big ask. He called a family member who was a jeweler to ask if the ring would be done in time, he was told no....and then was told that actually, it could work. He tracked down his future Father-In-Law to ask for Molly's hand, and then he set out for one of the biggest surprises he had ever planned. When he arrived, he snuck up on the wrong family at dinner before finally surprising the Whalens, Molly, mid-meal, was very surprised to see Nick. The proposal didn't happen there, and didn't happen at the planned spot either (apparently Molly's family has a habit of being late) but luckily right before it was about to happen, Molly's sister Kelly noticed something was about to go down and got the whole thing on video.
The goal was to get married on October 17th 2020 - and we know how the story goes about wedding planning in 2020. This is where Molly's indecisiveness actually saved them, since they decided on their venue just when everything went upside-down, so they had no deposits, and nothing to lose. The Church held their ceremony mass where friends and family were able to bare witness, and before leaving on a big family vacation they stopped for burgers at All American. This was a tradition adopted from Nick's family that worked out so perfectly for their ceremony. Being officially married, they gave themselves an entire year to plan a reception. I happened to be available for photos, and captured some of the most fun wedding shots I have gotten to date when they grabbed burgers after they exchanged vows. After that, Nick and Molly were officially married - but still wanted a celebration to match their joy.
when i received the text from molly about their reception
I got goosebumps. Why? Because hours before she texted me I had said no to an event because I had possible holiday sessions penciled in for the date in question. I had nothing booked, but I declined an event knowing I possibly wanted to book for holiday. For Nick & Molly's reception it was a no brainer for me, of course I would make it happen. It just seemed like one of those direct acts of fate. When they were planning their Hallockville celebration they battled with the idea of re-doing their ceremony, and decided that ultimately they just wanted to party. It was their day, and they did it unique to them. Food trucks, the best and most well decorated tent you've ever seen, and a bunch of people so happy to all be together. The energy was infectiously wonderful - all of these people genuinely loved this couple and liked being together and that went hand in hand with the perfect weather. Almost a year after their ceremony - the party was incredible. "The coolest part was that we got to have a traditional and modern first look, the traditional being at the ceremony and the modern at our reception, I feel really lucky with that," Molly recalled when we reviewed their gallery. It was really something special overall.
Talk about lining up perfectly
if you are viewing this on a phone you may not view the grid above the way it is intended unless you turn your screen. Did you do it? Scroll up and look at those six images. Yes, I knew I did that prompt at their engagement session, but no, I did not realize just how perfect that turned out until writing this post. These two were the first people outside of my household to hear about my rebrand. They were the first couple to know I was jumping into weddings, and I truly had no idea they would become such a big part of my brand. This year, I will be photographing Molly's sister Kelly's wedding and have been capturing some of Whalen Design's products as the brand grows. These two are as genuine and kind as they look, and I am so happy to share their story.
You can follow Molly on Instagram @WhalenDesign and Nick's company @preferredeventsli where you will find their contact and shop information regarding Art & Event Rentals