Welcome to my blog! I'm thrilled to be able to share with you my favorite images from weddings, engagements, maternity, and more! Grab a cup of coffee and get snuggly cuz this blog will give you all the feels!
I’m a face to face kinda girl. I like to have coffee with my clients, go do fun things with them, get to know the inner workings of their relationship. It bonds us so on the wedding day there is another friend on your side, who just happens to be taking pictures of your gorgeous face. Muryel & Sean didn’t give me any of that…and yet we somehow bonded despite the distance! These two are are busy people, I’m pretty sure it took at least 2 months for Muryel & I to even schedule a phone conversation! But we kept at it and when we finally made first contact it was like we’d known each other for years! Over the phone? How did that happen? Well, I think it was just meant to be!
So fear not my friends, even if I don’t get to meet you in person, there’s still hope! 😉
Muryel greeted me in the parking lot! Hah! I was so excited to finally see her gorgeous face in person, not just stalking her on Facebook! From that moment on the day was a dream!
I seriously could shoot these two every day of my life and I’d be happy. Just LOOK at how in love they are. Laughter, tears, and beautiful moments as far as the eye can see! It’s enough to make ME cry too! Once we left the “first look,” we headed to an empty lot that family friends owned on the Neuse River that was only two houses down from where Muryel grew up. The location held a lot of meaning to everyone and just so happened to have an epic view of the river!
Not sure what to light up in celebration of your wedding day? Lanterns, Fireworks, Sparklers? Why not all three! Talk about an epic way to celebrate the union of this amazing duo! It was just as epic as the party! I think there were a lot of people waiting for this particular day and it was so fun to watch everyone let loose! Seriously guys…can you just get married every weekend and hire me to do the wedding? That’d be great! 😉
I just love these two and I’m so honored to have been “the one” selected to document their day. It was extra special and I love that we can officially call each other friends!
Muryel is so elegant!
Even MORE tears! I’m dying here people!
– Tell me a bit about the planning process for your wedding (how did you pick the venue, colors, funny stories, etc.):
Our wedding planning process was very laid back. After dating for four and a half years, the only thing that was truly important to us was actually making our marriage official. We knew for a long time that we wanted to get married in our hometown, New Bern, NC. As far as venue is concerned, we got incredibly lucky! My next door neighbor growing up had donated his house to a control fire burn several years prior. So, when deciding on our actual venue our long-time family friend, Dr. Kirk Harum, was kind enough to let us borrow his property (and the best view of the Neuse river, for that matter) for our wedding weekend. It was the perfect location and coincidentally only two houses down from the house I was born and raised in! We didn’t have specific wedding “colors” but knew we wanted it to be neutral themed. There were actually several times that my sister, my dad and my husband would get frustrated with me because instead of making a decision regarding our planning, I’d just ask them to make the decision for me!
– What was the most memorable moment(s) of your day?
There were so many precious memories from that day… but a few of our favorites include: our wedding reveal moment, our perfect wedding vows, the sky lanterns that were released in memory of all those that couldn’t be with us on our wedding day, the fireworks to conclude the night, and the Father of the Bride whisking us away in his boat “The Keeper.”
– Funniest memory from your wedding day?
By far, the funniest memories from the wedding weekend were: #1 Sean realizing that he forgot both the Father-of-the-Groom and the Father-of-the-Bride’s tuxedo vest and tie in Raleigh, NC on the day before the wedding. Thank goodness my best friend was on her way from Raleigh and swung by our house to pick them up in time and #2 my sister (the MOH) trying to fit myself, my veil, and all of my white dress into the oh-so-very-tiny Pontiac Solstice we drove with the top down to the wedding. We then laughed the whole way to the ceremony cite. Absolutely a memory I will never forget.
– If you had to do it all over again would you change anything?
Not one thing! It was the best experience we have ever had, and would do everything the exact same.
– Any advice for future bride & grooms?
Stay true to yourselves. It is so easy to get wrapped up in the wedding planning process, become stressed out and a tad bit grumpy. Just remember this is and will be the best day of your entire life. It’s not a matter of if something will go wrong, but when something WILL go wrong… I.e. We forgot our table numbers! So, three of my best friends ran around town that morning, bought all the supplies and frames, and then sat on the floor of the hair salon the morning of the wedding while we were all getting our hair and makeup done and made our table numbers only hours before the ceremony and reception. But guess what, it got done! They were perfect and no one ever knew! Roll with the punches, have a mimosa to take the edge off, and use your friends and family to your advantage because they all want to help and make your day perfect in any way they can!
– What was your biggest fear before hiring me? Did it come true, and if not, what happened instead?
Our biggest fear before hiring Mabyn was the fact that we had never met her. At the time, I was living in Charlotte finishing Physician Assistant School and Sean was living in Washington, D.C. for work. We were all so busy that there was never a perfect time when we could all sit down, get to know each other, and decide if she was the right fit for us and our wedding. It was important to us that we meshed well with our photographer, shared the same type of vision of what we wanted in our photos, and ultimately hoped to build a life-long friendship with our photographer. However, after I was finally able to schedule a phone meeting with Mabyn, I knew she was our girl. We sat on the phone on a Wednesday night for an hour and a half, just as if we had known each other for years, laughing, cutting up, and getting to know each other. After it is all said and done, I know that we couldn’t have picked a better photographer.
– What, specifically, was your favorite part of working with Mabyn Ludke Photography and why?
Often times throughout the process, I was probably a little “too laid back,” if there is such a thing. There were times when Mabyn and I were supposed to meet and I would have to cancel last minute, times where I was supposed to email her something regarding our contract/details and I would forget, and times on the wedding day that things didn’t quite go as planned, but the entire time Mabyn had a smile on her face, was encouraging and was seemingly just as “go-with-the-flow” as I was. She was so easy to talk to, always had a smile on her face, and the best photographer I could’ve ever wished for.
– If you were to recommend Mabyn Ludke Photography to your best friend, what would you say?
If you don’t hire Mabyn Ludke to be your photographer, you are an idiot! Mabyn is an absolute gem. You will not find another photographer that is friendlier, smarter, harder working, or more passionate about their career than Mabyn. She has this uncanny ability to make you and everyone else she is photographing feel like you were born to be in front of her lens. After all is said and done and your wedding day has come and gone, you will have unbelievably phenomenal photos to remind you of your spectacular day and a lifelong friend in your photographer, which is something not many brides/grooms can say.
Hair: Lindsey Everett Ireland, owner of La Bella Donna Salon; New Bern, NC // Makeup Artist: Melissa Sullivan Caves, makeup extraordinaire; New Bern, NC // Dress Designer & Store Location: Allure Bridal; Dar Lynn’s Bridal & Formal Wear; Matthews, NC // Jewelry: David’s Bridal // Veil or Hair accessories: Dar Lynn’s Bridal & Formal Wear; Matthews, NC // Shoes: Vince Camuto // Maid of Honor Dress: Aidan Mattox // Grooms Attire: Ticknors Men’s Clothier; Raleigh, NC // Ceremony & Reception Venue: The Harum Place; New Bern, NC // Additional photo venue (reveal moment): The Fulcher Residence; New Bern, NC // Florist: Mary Gierie-Pavelo; Harris Teeter, New Bern, NC // DJ: Brian Hales with CK Entertainment; New Bern, NC // Caterer: Chef Smoke, owner of the Flame; New Bern, NC // Cake: Your Perfect Cake; Greenville, NC // Event Designer: Cathy Fulcher and Carolyn Kuhn; New Bern, NC // Tent & Lighting: Island Essentials; Emerald Isle, NC // Invitations & Stationary: Created and designed by lifelong family friend, Leslie Andrews; New Bern, NC
Jenna & Jon are no muss no fuss people. They love the outdoors, good wine and beer, and those little quiet moments that they spend with their loved ones. So when planning their wedding, they didn’t want this big “to-do” with 100s of people. They wanted something simply “them.”
Nothing could be more “them” than getting married on Jenna’s family’s farm. They spent the past year renovating it to make it picture perfect for their day, and it was just that, perfect! With their closest family and friends there to celebrate with them, Jenna and Jon officially vowed themselves to one another. It was simple, elegant, and completely personal. My favorite part was the champagne toast right after the first kiss! A unique and beautiful way to start off their new journey together.
Their reception was full of funny stories, dancing, mustache’s, and taco trucks! Yes, they had a taco truck come near the end of their party and cater. I personally recommend the Korean taco, it was AMAZING!
And what better way to end the evening with their own personal fireworks show? BAM! You’re married! 😉
How did your fiance propose? He proposed on New Years, which is cliche’ but later on he told me it was to set a deadline for himself because he was so nervous. We went for nice hike that day and then to the grocery store to get some things for dinner. When we got home he kept his jacket on all night, which I thought was strange. Turns out he had his great grandmothers ring in the pocket and was just trying to work up the nerve to ask all day.
Tell me a bit about the planning process for your wedding : We always knew we wanted to get married on my parents farm. My parent’s got married there when my grandparents owned it. It was truly a labor of love to convert a working farm barn into a reception space! It took us a year!
What was the most memorable moment(s) of your day? The first look. I was so nervous up until the minute I saw John! Then all my nerves melted away and I was like “lets do this!”
Funniest memory from your wedding day? John broke out in hives right before the wedding!! He was so itchy all during the ceremony! It is funny looking back at it, but I am sure he was uncomfortable.
If you had to do it all over again would you change anything? I probably would have “let go” a little more in the weeks leading up to the wedding.
Any advice for future bride & grooms? Take some time to yourselves on the day of the wedding. John is traditional and originally didn’t want to see me before the ceremony but we are SO GLAD we decided to do the first look! The day goes so fast, it is nice to have a little pep rally together ahead of time.
What was your favorite part about working with Mabyn Ludke Photography? Mabyn was amazing! She makes you feel so comfortable and you forget she is even there; even though she is rolling around on the ground to get the perfect shot! She is so unobtrusive and able to capture special moments
Hair: New Image Hair Salon, Watkins Glen, NY// Dress Designer & Store Location: David’s Bridal Big Flats, NY// Jewelry: Etsy, yard sales, thrift stores
Veil or Hair accessories: Made by bride and MOB// Shoes: Thrift store//Bridesmaids Dresses: Various// Grooms Attire: Bride and MOB made groomsmen’s vests, Groom’s suit came from Shepler’s Wester Wear// Ceremony Venue: Bride’s parent’s property// Reception Venue: Bride’s parent’s barn// Florist: Plenty of Posie’s, Gather FLX// Band: Scott Adams// Caterer: Brud Holland// Cake: Jessica Thorpe – Glen Mountain Market // Event Designer: Heather Hallagan – Gather FLX// Wedding Coordinator: Melissa Thompson – Gather FLX// Invitations & Stationary: Scott Ender