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I'm Elizabeth Gelineau, a photographer, dreamer, and accidental entrepreneur. Based in my hometown of Mobile, Ala., I photograph portraits, weddings and events on both sides of Mobile Bay. Grab a cup of coffee (or other beverage of your choice) and enjoy browsing around. I'm so glad you stopped by!

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Open Post

Let’s Eat Some Cake! At the end of a long day of photographing a wedding I look forward to enjoying a slice of wedding cake. That sugar rush always seems to carry me through the last hour of the reception. The wedding cake is often the stand out detail of the wedding reception. Whether you […]

June 27, 2018

Let’s Eat Some Cake!

At the end of a long day of photographing a wedding I look forward to enjoying a slice of wedding cake. That sugar rush always seems to carry me through the last hour of the reception. The wedding cake is often the stand out detail of the wedding reception. Whether you go for a traditional look (layered with buttercream icing), or a modern trend (naked cakes with creative fillings), you can’t get it wrong as long as it tastes good. Some couples skip the wedding cake in favor of a dessert table. Since I love all things classic and timeless, layer cakes still have my heart, but I also adore these newer trends!

I have seen some amazingly gorgeous cakes and some awesome dessert tables at weddings I’ve photographed. The cake is one of my FAVORITE details to photograph on wedding days. I like to think of it as taking a portrait of the cake. Sometimes I only have a couple of minutes to get the light right and grab my shot. I try to photograph reception details before guests enter the room, ensuring the scene is untouched. This allows the bride and groom to see something that they would otherwise miss since they are typically the last people to enter into the reception. Many times they barely get a good look at the cake before they cut into it!

Since I have a major love of wedding cakes and food photography, I was thrilled when I was given the opportunity to photograph some cakes for Mobile Bay Bride Magazine’s 2018 issue. The cakes that were part of the shoots I did were absolutely stunning! Today, I’m sharing those amazing cakes, plus some of my favorites from weddings I’ve photographed. I can’t imagine how my brides decide on a cake flavor and design because I love them all!

 

Cake Trends I Love

1. The all-white cake

The all-white wedding cake still reigns supreme! White is definitely a classic choice, but it does not have to be a boring one. I love seeing textured frosting, eye-catching florals and elaborate piping take an all-white cake from plain to fabulous! This cake is one that I photographed for Mobile Bay Bride Magazine and I absolutely loved the greenery that wrapped around each layer. Lemons and berries lend a summery feel to this simple design by Cakes by Judi.

Katie and Trent’s wedding cake is one of my all-time favorites! The gold accents and the texture of the pale flowers brought just the right amount of detail to this statuesque cake. The elegant floral arrangements framed up this area so beautifully. It really made the cake the focal point detail at the reception. To say I am still obsessed with this cake is an understatement! Couture Cakes really outdid themselves with this beautiful creation! Their cakes are also some of the most delicious you’ll ever taste!

I love, love, love texture on a cake and this cake certainly had texture! This cake by J.A.M. Cakery was from one of the first few weddings I second shot with my friend Jennie Tewell, but it remains an all-time favorite. It is also one of the best tasting cakes I’ve ever eaten. Even though I only got to take one bite before we had to rush out and photograph the exit, I still remember how delicious this cake was over three years later! J.A.M. Cakery is now based in Opelika.

I love a cake that makes a statement and Jillian and Collin’s cake did just that! This cake by Pollman’s Bake Shop was huge! I loved how the folding screen and floral garland created such a lovely backdrop for this cake portrait. The Edison lights that were strung above brought the perfect modern touch to this classic Mobile Bay wedding. The pastel roses added the perfect amount of color. I could have photographed this cake all day.

Katie and Patrick’s wedding was full of Southern classics and their wedding cake was no exception! I love this style of cake. The choice of flowers can really change up the look for this timeless design (scroll down to see what I mean!). Cakes by Judi works magic with buttercream frosting!

Different flowers create a different look! I love the color pop of hot pink flowers on this cake that Sally’s Piece-A-Cake created for the Mobile Bay Bride shoot. The design is very similar to Katie and Patrick’s cake shown above, but switching up the choice of flowers gives it a completely different feel! Both options are perfect for spring weddings!

2. Naked Cakes

I was the kid that never wanted the slice of cake with the big rosette made of frosting. I have a sweet tooth, but don’t like overly sweetened desserts, so it’s no surprise that I love the naked cake trend! Naked cakes exemplify the art of simplicity. These cakes can be made to fit in with almost any wedding style and I consider them less of indulgence since each slice only has a small amount of frosting. Does that mean I can have two slices and not feel guilty about it? Just kidding!

I was obsessed with this cake by EllenJay Events that was part of the cake shoot I photographed for Mobile Bay Bride. Fall is my favorite season of the year, so it’s not a surprise that this cake had me all heart-eyes when they brought it in for me to photograph. I love that it’s a sweet potato cake and captures all the warmth of autumn!

I took this next cake photo while second shooting with my friend Jennie. It is still a favorite cake photo all these years later!

3. Cakes that Sparkle

For brides that love their bling, cakes with metallic elements are a huge hit. I love a little sparkle on a wedding cake! Whether you want just a hint of gold or you want to go all out, this is another one of my favorite trends. I love how this cake by The Little Cake Shop had both a bit of sparkle and great texture.

This amazing six-tier cake was absolutely stunning! I love that it’s traditional with a modern flair! The cascade of flowers brought just the right amount of softness to this cake. I still can’t get over this intricate lace detail! Perfection!

4. Why Have One Cake When You Can Have Three?

My friend Debby joked that she was having three cakes at her wedding because one was not enough. I love the multiple cake trend! Brides that go this route usually skip having a large tiered cake and select two or three smaller cakes in varying flavors. Some couples opt for the mini cakes in place of a groom’s cake and select an array of flavors, such as strawberry, lemon, chocolate and coconut. The possibilities are endless! Debby and Richard chose Cakes by Judi for their wedding cakes and I can happily say that I tasted two out of the three and they were fabulous!

Debby loves frosting and Richard doesn’t, so they decided to have one cake with traditional wedding cake and buttercream frosting and two smaller naked cakes (strawberry & chocolate), giving them each a delicious option to enjoy on their wedding day! How cute are these little cakes?!

Cupcakes are also still a popular option for smaller weddings and for couples that want to have more than one flavor option for guests. I absolutely adored this cupcake tree at Karen and Zach’s Mobile Botanical Gardens wedding. A friend of theirs made these delicious cupcakes as a wedding present. Both Karen and Zach work in longleaf pine forest conservation, so the addition of pine cone cake toppers was an adorable touch!

 

5. Marbled Cakes

I don’t remember exactly when I noticed marbled cakes showing up in my Instagram feed, but I do remember that I instantly loved the look. If you’re a fan of fondant cakes, this is a trend for you! I’m actually not even sure if marbled is the correct term for these cakes. Maybe watercolor would be a better description? Either way, I’m a fan. Both of these cakes were photographed for two different shoots I did for Mobile Bay Bride and both were created by Tara of Couture Cakes. Tara is an amazing cake artist. I’m always in awe of how her cakes look amazing AND taste amazing every single time!

6. Dessert Tables

Dessert tables are my FAVORITE! Who doesn’t love seeing a whole spread of sweet treats at a reception! Try one, or try them all!!! Some couples include a traditional bride’s cake and groom’s cake along with an array of desserts ranging from cake pops to mini cheese cakes, while others skip the traditional cakes completely in lieu of pies, tarts, decorated cookies, brownies and chocolate covered pretzels. This is where couples can get creative and have fun with their dessert selections. Like kids in a candy store, guests swarm the dessert table, eager to try out a little bit of everything. Best of all, there’s sure to be something on the table that will appeal to every guest. I’ve even seen gluten-free desserts represented!

This dessert table spread was created for a shoot I did for Mobile Bay Bride’s 2017 issue. Isn’t this watercolor technique beautiful?! EllenJay Events always puts together amazing dessert tables. They are truly a feast for the eyes! I am not so secretly obsessed with their decorated cookies (just ask my brides!)! It is so hard to stop by their midtown shop without buying one (or two, or three). Whenever I see their decorated cookies donning a dessert table, I know they won’t last long because they are just that good!

Dessert tables are also a great option for weddings that are smaller, or won’t include a meal at the reception!

 

7. The Groom’s Cake

Did you know the tradition of a groom’s cake originated in Victorian England? I’ve always thought of the groom’s cake as a Southern tradition ever since I was at a wedding where a guest from up north asked me why there were two cakes at the reception. They had never heard of a groom’s cake. I had never met someone who hadn’t heard of a groom’s cake. We were both fascinated. Fast forward a few years and I’ve discovered that it is indeed mostly us Southerners that continue the groom’s cake tradition, but thanks to Google I now know where the idea of the groom’s cake came from. I’m just glad we dropped the tradition of the groom’s cake being made out of fruitcake.

Groom’s cakes are such a fun tradition! I love seeing the groom’s personality shine through them. It’s also fun when you know the groom’s cake is a surprise from the bride. Sometimes I’m photographing the groom’s cake at the rehearsal dinner and sometimes both are at the wedding reception. I’ve seen my share of creative groom’s cakes, but you can never go wrong if you incorporate your SEC football team. These are some of my favorites!

Star Wars is also a frequent groom’s cake theme! I keep wondering if I’m ever going to see a Harry Potter groom’s cake. I’ll probably totally geek out if I ever do!

Are you craving cake yet? I am! Don’t be afraid to have fun with your cake design. Remember, it’s most important that it tastes fabulous and that it’s something you love!

Want more wedding inspiration? Tell me in the comments below what you’d like to see in my next wedding day inspiration post!

Are you recently engaged? I’ve put together a free e-book full of tips to help you plan your special day! Sign up for my newsletter to receive a link to the insider’s guide, 7 Tips for Staying Organized While Planning Your Dream Wedding.

Category:

Cakes | Wedding Inspiration

2018

Open Post

Wedding Dresses for the Southern Bride Spring wedding season is just kicking off and this post is for Southern brides who are on the hunt for that perfect gown. The wedding dress is definitely a favorite topic for all of us girls to talk about! On wedding days, something happens when the bride puts on […]

March 7, 2018

Wedding Dresses for the Southern Bride

Spring wedding season is just kicking off and this post is for Southern brides who are on the hunt for that perfect gown. The wedding dress is definitely a favorite topic for all of us girls to talk about! On wedding days, something happens when the bride puts on her dress. There is a change in the atmosphere in the room. It’s like Tinker Bell sprinkled her pixie dust over the scene and everything is magical. Tears, smiles, hugs and nerves are often present. I LOVE photographing this special moment!

The wedding dress is also one of the main elements from the wedding day that will likely become a family heirloom, along with the wedding album of course! Some brides wear gowns that are already heirlooms, passed down from generation to generation. I love to photograph the dress before the bride puts it on. There will be plenty of portraits of the bride wearing her dress, but I also love to capture the details of this heirloom before it’s worn. I like to get up close and capture that delicate lace and beading, in addition to taking a wide shot showing the dress in all it’s glory.

No matter the style, or details–ball gown, a-line, mermaid, lace, satin, beaded, with train or without–I love them all! I especially love when brides see themselves in their gown for the first time. They usually take a deep breath, smile (maybe with some happy tears in their eyes) and quickly let everyone know that it’s time to get the show on the road. Their excitement and joy is always contagious!

I wish I could share ALL of my favorite gowns in this post, but here are a few favorites showing diverse silhouettes and styles! Do you see one that’s calling your name?! If so, tell me in the comments!

Are you recently engaged? I am a Mobile Alabama wedding photographer and I would love to chat with you about your upcoming wedding!

Contact me for more information on wedding packages and availability. Check out my recent weddings here!

Category:

Gorgeous Gowns | Wedding Inspiration

2018

Open Post

Finding Your Bridal Bouquet Style I have always loved flowers (except for lilies…hello allergies!). When I was a teenager, I started buying Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine and I always drooled over the gorgeous floral designs that filled the pages. Back in those days I never dreamed I would become a wedding photographer! There wasn’t even […]

February 14, 2018

Finding Your Bridal Bouquet Style

I have always loved flowers (except for lilies…hello allergies!). When I was a teenager, I started buying Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine and I always drooled over the gorgeous floral designs that filled the pages. Back in those days I never dreamed I would become a wedding photographer! There wasn’t even the hint of such a dream in my mind. When I did start photographing weddings, the bouquets quickly became one of my favorite details to photograph. I just love seeing how a bride’s bouquet matches her personality (because I think they always do!).

I initially wrote this post in honor of Valentine’s Day. But dozens of bouquet shots later, it’s just a fun way to share some of my favorite bouquets categorized by style for a little wedding inspiration. This is just a small selection of favorites because, honestly, this post could be three times this long if I posted all the bouquets I love. If you’re in the midst of planning your big day, I hope seeing these beautiful creations gives you some ideas for your own bridal bouquet. I am constantly in awe of the talent of the florists that create these beautiful designs. Keep scrolling to see what I mean!

White Bouquets

For the traditional, classic bride that wants a timeless bouquet, I am absolutely in love with the all white (or mostly white) bouquet designs. Soft and elegant, these bouquets are usually full of gorgeous blooms like roses and hydrangeas (two of my favorites)! They are also great for highlighting special heirlooms like brooches, rosaries, lockets and other family heirlooms that brides may want to attach to the bouquet stem.

white bridal bouquet with roses peonies and greenery white bride bouquet with roses and peonies and shamrock pined to stems belle bouquet floristWhite bridal bouquet with orchids, roses, ranunculus, dusty miller and eucalyptus.

Dramatic Designs

If you want to make a statement with your bouquet, select one full of dramatic blooms or a lot of greenery. Dahlias, peonies and ranunculus are some of my favorites that I see in these types of bouquets! I also love when bouquets of dramatic blooms have a soft color palette of creamy pinks, whites and soft yellows, or are totally seasonal (again, I’m obsessed with flowers!). These bouquets stand out as works of art and definitely have a wow factor.

Colorful bride bouquet from a fall wedding with burgundy dahlias, cream and red roses.Creamy white bridal bouquet with large peonies, ranunculus, roses and eucalyptus

Colorful Bouquets

At the opposite end of the spectrum from the all-white bouquet is the fun and cheerful colorful bouquet. I love it when brides incorporate their wedding colors into the bouquet. When there is a hint of the bridesmaid dress color in the bridal bouquet, or a color that is complimentary to the bridesmaid dress color, it really creates a cohesive look in the bridal party portraits.

Cascading Bouquets

Few things are more romantic and feminine than a cascading bouquet. For brides that love flowers, this is the ultimate bouquet design. These bouquets will also give you an arm workout, but they’re SO worth it! 🙂

Large spring bride bouquet with cascading flowers, including bridal wreath, roses and ranunculus.

Southern Elegance Bouquet

While there are always new trends in the world of weddings, I will always love the classics. These bouquets are all Southern in their choice of color and bloom selection (you can never go wrong with hydrangeas, dusty miller, eucalyptus or roses). The scale of these bouquets is the perfect balance between large and small.

white bride bouquet with roses and greenery

Which bouquet style is your favorite? Tell me in the comments!

Looking for a Mobile Alabama Wedding photographer? Contact me for more information on wedding photography!

 

VENDORS

Julia Greer Fobes

Elizabeth’s Garden

Belle Bouquet

Victoria Austin Designs

Sarah Beth’s Florist

Wildflowers Fairhope

Chrissy Helvenston

Category:

Bride Bouquets | Wedding Inspiration

2018

Open Post

A little preparation before wedding week arrives can really ease your mind and help keep things running smooth on wedding day. After nearly three years of photographing weddings, I’ve learned a few tips that can keep the day on track and save the day should a disaster occur. Brides that do the following ahead of wedding week, are always…

August 15, 2017

The Organized Bride Series

A little preparation before wedding week arrives can really ease your mind and help keep things running smooth on wedding day. After nearly three years of photographing weddings, I’ve learned a few tips that can keep the day on track and save the day should a disaster occur. Brides that do the following ahead of wedding week, are always the most relaxed because they know they’ve done the preparation to make the day go as smooth as possible. Does every wedding have a hiccup, or two? Yes. But, when the bride is prepared, those little hiccups are quickly smoothed over. Do these five things before wedding week and you’re sure to be able to relax and enjoy your special day!

1. Gather the Details

This is one thing you do not want to be worried about during wedding week because there are so many other things that require your attention during the final days before the wedding. Before wedding week arrives, take time to gather your bridal details that you would like photographed. Except for your wedding dress and your bridal bouquet, all of your smaller details should fit in a box, tote bag, or other container (shoes, wedding rings, other jewelry, invitation suite, etc.). Putting them in a container that will keep them together will make it easy for you to transport them to your getting ready location. When I arrive on wedding day and ask for those details, it will be easy for your Maid of Honor, mom, or sister to let me know where those details are if they are in one container. Trust me, you do not want to have to take a break from hair and makeup the day of the wedding to gather these things together once I arrive.

2. Try on The Dress

I can’t tell you how many times brides are putting on their dress for the first time after the final fitting on wedding day. Final fittings are a fun, often emotional, experience. The big day is SO close and your mind is racing over what all needs to be done. At the final fitting, there is someone there that knows the ins and outs of the zippers, the buttons and the belts to help you get into your dress. They are there to help your Maid of Honor, or mom, or sister to figure out the bustle. It all goes much quicker and much smoother at the final fitting than it likely will go on wedding day. On wedding day, that wonderful person from the salon is not there to help you get into your dress and getting into that gorgeous gown is often easier said than done. Doing a trial run ahead of the wedding is so helpful! If the buttons require a crochet hook, you are more likely to remember to pack that in your bag if you’ve tried your dress on ahead of wedding week without the help of the professionals at the salon. Bonus, if you discover something is out of order with your wedding day ensemble, you stand a better chance of getting it fixed before wedding day!

3. Break in the Shoes

Don’t wait until wedding day to wear your shoes for the first time! This is sure to cause blisters, something that will not only slow you down, but can also cause a lot of pain. What bride wants to deal with that on wedding day?! Wear your shoes around the house to break them in so that they don’t kill your feet on wedding day. As long as you’re wearing them inside, they’ll still look fresh and new for your detail photographs.

4. Share Contact Information

As a wedding photographer, I always make sure I have the phone numbers for the bride, groom and wedding planner saved to my phone ahead of the wedding, but most grooms do not have my contact information, or the planner’s. It’s easy to forget to make sure the groom has that information beforehand and there have been many times where I’ve found myself needing to call the groom on wedding day (one common time is when we are preparing for a First Look!).

Lets be honest. Today, pretty much everyone screens their calls. If you don’t know who is calling, you’re unlikely to answer, especially if you’re in the middle of your wedding day!!!! If your photographer needs to get in touch with your groom on wedding day, you want to make sure he has that number in his phone. Guys are often at a separate location from the girls and your photographer may need to reach him to coordinate a meeting place, or give him a heads up about a last minute schedule change.

It’s also a good idea to share contact information for your photographer and planner with your maid of honor, or your mom, just in case you are not able to answer your phone and they need to get in touch with you at some point during the day. Make sure you give their numbers to your photographer in advance as well.

5. Prepare an Emergency Kit

Grey MB Greene Bag With Bridal Emergency Kit, including bandaids, sewing kit, Tide to Go Stick, Deodorant, protein bar and pain reliever.

I’ve never photographed a wedding where someone didn’t need one of the following items: band-aids, pain reliever, snacks, deodorant, needle and thread, or a bobby pin. It’s for this reason that I have a small collection of “wedding day emergency items” in my camera bag just in case, but that emergency kit is small and the bare minimum. A week before the wedding, create a wedding day preparedness kit and fill it with essentials that could come to the rescue should something happen on wedding day. Some things I’ve seen brides bring to the getting ready suite that have saved the day are listed below. In all likelihood you won’t use the majority of these items, but being prepared will ease your mind that all will be fine should something occur. Pack all of these items in a cute bag (I love the small MB Greene cosmetic bags because they are lined with a waterproof material that is easy to clean) and you’ll know you have something for nearly every minor emergency.

 

Wedding Day Preparedness Kit

Wedding Day Preparedness Kit Graphic, including bandaids, sewing kit, Tide to Go Stick, Deodorant, protein bar and pain reliever.

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Category:

5 Things to Do Before Wedding Week

2017

Open Post

I LOVE sparkler exits, but they are also one of the trickiest things to photograph. I will never forget my first experience with sparklers at a wedding. The main thing I could think about was…

July 11, 2017

The Organized Bride Series

I LOVE sparkler exits, but they are also one of the trickiest things to photograph. I will never forget my first experience with sparklers at a wedding. The main thing I could think about was how fast the moment went by. Thankfully, I was second shooting at this particular wedding, so my first experience with sparklers was alongside an experienced wedding photographer. The pressure was on her to get the shot, not on me. However, since that wedding, I have photographed many sparkler exits where the pressure was on me to get the shot and there are definitely some tips I’ve learned along the way. If you’re getting sparklers for your grand exit, it’s likely because you want a fun sparkler exit photo. Follow these tips and you’re sure to make the most of that moment!

1. Get Ready…Because They Don’t Last Long

Sparklers last a VERY short period of time, so timing is of the essence. Once your guests begin to gather for the exit, you want to be near the door and ready to exit at any second. If you’re at a wedding where I’m shooting a sparkler exit, you’ll hear me say over and over as guests come outside, “don’t light them until we give you the signal.” However, what often happens is someone innocently pops out a lighter and starts lighting sparklers, not realizing that lighting the sparklers too soon can actually cause us to miss out on the sparkler photo if the bride and groom aren’t yet near the door and ready to exit. Once it’s been announced you’re going to exit, you want to be within sight of the door so that you can exit as soon as you’re given the cue.

2. Splurge for Longer Sparklers

This is something I’ve learned from my photographer friends and by experience! Not all sparklers are the same. For the best sparkler exit, be sure to order the longer sparklers since they’ll burn longer. You can also get the kind that are labeled smokeless. While all fire has some smoke, these sparklers tend to have more sparkle and smoke isn’t as heavy and thick.

3. Walk A Bit Slower for More Photos

This is your time to really savor the final moment of your wedding day, so take your time going through that sparkler tunnel. Enjoy it! The slower you walk, the more photos we are able to take of this moment, which is the last moment of your wedding! If you have a long tunnel of sparklers, you can still walk through briskly, but if you have a short distance to go from the doorway to the car you’ll definitely want to walk a bit slower than your normal stride to ensure that fun moment is thoroughly captured on camera.

bride and groom walking through sparkler tunnel

4. The Wow Factor

Want to really add that wow factor to your sparkler exit? Pause halfway between the door and the car for a kiss, dip or twirl. This is guaranteed to give your exit photo that “wow” factor and is so much fun for your guests.

5. What About Sparkler Alternatives?

If you want the look of sparklers, then you need to go with the real thing. It’s hard to get that glow from anything else, even though there are many non-flammable options on the market. In most cases, you’ll need much more of the non-flammable style lights (glow sticks, LED lights, etc.) than you’d need of the sparklers to get the same amount of glow. If your venue doesn’t allow sparklers, opt for something totally different and make it amazing. Bio-degradable confetti is my new favorite sparkler alternative. I also love balloons, bubbles, rose petals, and ribbon wands. There are many possibilities! Remember, what truly makes the exit photo fun is the happiness of the bride and groom!

Planning your dream wedding? I’d love to chat about the details of your day!

Contact me for more information on availability and wedding packages!

Category:

Make the Most of Your Sparkler Exit

For Brides

Welcome! I'm Elizabeth.

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I'm Elizabeth Gelineau, a photographer, dreamer, and accidental entrepreneur. Based in my hometown of Mobile, Ala., I photograph portraits, weddings and events on both sides of Mobile Bay. Grab a cup of coffee (or other beverage of your choice) and enjoy browsing around. I'm so glad you stopped by!

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