Castles, dragons, axe throwing, a horse and carriage, and actual ash falling out of the sky. What more could you want from a medieval wedding???
Tanya and Mike are officially married and their medieval wedding was INSANE!! First, let me remind you of this amazing couple. Mike and Tanya met at the University of Central Florida in the theatre program (where Jack and I also met them). Tanya was in the stage management program and Mike was the assistant technical director in the scene shop. The two went on their first date 8 months after Tanya and I graduated. They went mini golfing and saw Fantasmic at Disney’s Hollywood Studios (on a night I was working on the pyro team!). Tanya proclaimed to her bridesmaid, Ana, and officiant, Peggy, that she had feelings, and it was love ever since.
Built for a king and queen, this medieval wedding was a DIY masterpiece. Arriving at the venue, we laid eyes on the most stunning castle facade. Mike, being the amazing carpenter that he is, custom built a majority of their wedding. This castle was no exception. With three sets of stairs, house crests and flags, stained glass windows, torches, and a large doorway, it was the perfect place for these two to say their vows.
Walking around the venue, we were welcomed by custom games. Mike built a bar slide, axe throw, and a ring toss, along with other games for guests to play. Set up at the back of the farm was a giant tent for the reception. Inside, two exquisitely built chandeliers hung from poles. Mike and Tanya hand-carved trees with tea lights sitting in water beads for each table for centerpieces. The front of the tent had signs quoting the bride and groom. Tanya and Mike sat in thrones of their wedding colors at their sweetheart table with dragon tables to each side.
Tanya wore a stunning lace ballgown accompanied by a crown and veil. Wood and sheet music made up the bouquets for the bridal party. Mike and his groomsmen adorned custom hatchets, completing the medieval wedding theme.
Riding in on a horse and carriage, Tanya was a queen ready to marry her king. Her dad helped her out of the carriage and walked her down the aisle to meet Mike. Peggy shared the story of how these two came to be and family members read passages of love during the ceremony. Mike and Tanya wrote their own vows and had the guests both laughing and crying. They exchanged rings, shared their kiss (two, if you count the social media kiss for those who wanted their own picture!), and they were finally husband and wife.
The most special moment of the day for us was the reception. Tanya and Mike worked with choreographer (and our close friend), Shelby Jay, to learn a sweet dance for their wedding. They danced to “All of Me” by John Legend, and you could really tell they put their all into it. The mother and son dance is what hit me most. Mike lost his mom almost 5 years ago this month. Kim, Mike’s sister, took on the motherly role in the family and this included the dance. The two siblings celebrated their love for their mom. Laughing, crying, and just enjoying being in the company of one another, they danced away.
Mike and Tanya, I cannot express to you how honored we were to photograph your most special day. You two are some of our best friends and we are so excited to see where your lives head next. We love you both to pieces! Enjoy your sneak peek and enjoy your Tennessee honeymoon!
Venue: Astor Farm
Dress Designer: The Aventura Bridal & Tuxedo
Florist: Hanky Panky Blooms
Wedding Coordinator: Jeana Caporelli
Officiant: Peggy Carter
Choreographer: Shelby Jay
Scenic and Decor: Mike Layton
Catering: Rat Rods Woodfire Pizza
Bridesmaid Dresses: David’s Bridal
Groom and Groomsmen: Men’s Wearhouse
Hair: Alexis Northrop
Makeup: Kayla Villanueva
Crown: Captured Curls
Want to see some of our other weddings? Click below!