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Karlin and Jeremy’s Archetype Engagement Shoot PLUS 12 BIG GIVEAWAYS!

Remember way back in September when we ran our awesome Archetype Studio Engagement Session giveaway? Lots of y’all entered, sharing your beautiful, touching, and in a couple of cases pretty darn hilarious, proposal stories with us. While we usually select our giveaway winners totally randomly, in this case, our staff teamed up with Terilyn Brown of Archetype to pick the entry that moved us most. Our winner? Karlin, who, like her fiancé Jeremy, is an active-duty U.S. Marine. The two met, and eventually fell in love, while stationed in Okinawa, Japan, but eventually Jeremy received orders to move back to the states, while Karlin remained in Japan. During his time back in the U.S., Jeremy, head over heels over Karlin, procured the ring he planned to give his girl one day.

That day eventually came, months later, when Karlin and Jeremy were fatefully reunited in Okinawa (and despite a super-typhoon that hit the area and almost derailed the smitten soldier’s proposal plans!). As Karlin recounts it, after a dinner date and frozen yogurt, he surprised her by asking someone to take their picture. “He is shy and will never ask a stranger to take a picture of us, much less carry a camera around—that is my job,” Karlin told us. “As soon as we were getting ready to pose he turns me around and was already down on one knee. I am not really sure what else happened after that.”

What happened is that Karlin said, “Yes.” And entered her story in our contest—and won. And this past month, when she and Jeremy were once again reunited, this time in Houston, the pair posed for Archetype’s camera—and the results, as you can see here, are utterly amazing (they make it hard for us to believe that adorable Jeremy could ever be camera shy!). For us here at the Houston Wedding Blog, it is the perfect convergence of an extraordinarily talented photographer, a beautiful and adoring couple, and a story of determination, devotion and LOVE—of country, and of each other.

When you’re done wiping away that tear or two you KNOW you just shed, scroll down below those gorgeous photos to find out how you can win one of 12 engagement sessions Archetype is giving away, one per (business) day, starting Thursday, December 1!

Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Engagement Shoot by Archetype Studios
Photos: Archetype Studio

ARCHETYPE STUDIO’S 12 DAYS OF ENGAGEMENT-SHOOT GIVEAWAYS CONTEST

The Prize(s): In the generous spirit of the Christmas season, and just because they love Houston brides as much as we do, Archetype Studio is giving away ONE engagement photography session—two-hour Houston location shoot, in-person ordering and image-consulting appointment, and one heirloom print any size up to 8×12—EVERY DAY for 12 business days, from December 1 through December 16.

Yes, really.

To Enter: E-mail us your name, fiancé’s name, wedding date and wedding reception venue. All requested information MUST be in your entry e-mail. You may enter ONCE per entry day during the contest period: Dec. 1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, and entries must be received by 5 p.m. each entry day in order to qualify. One winner will be randomly selected each day. We will notify winners by e-mail, and announce winners on Facebook.

You’ve seen their stunning photo work. Now be a part of it. Enter Archetype’s 12 Days of Engagement Session Giveaways contest, and good luck!!

Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer

“The best way to describe Ashley and Dan is to say they have big personalities,” hot Houston photographer Adam Nyholt told us, when we inquired about this amazing engagement shoot. “They both love fashion, and of course have great taste. For their engagement session they wanted a shoot that was unique and very much ‘them.’ I suggested the Foundation Room at House of Blues, not only for it’s dramatic vibe, but also because I knew nobody else has taken engagement portraits there.” Yup, that’s right, HOB’s ultra-exotic, super-sexy private party space was virgin territory for an engagement shoot when Ashley and Dan rocked the joint. We have a feeling it’s going to get a lot more popular, though, once brides-to-be get a look at these gorgeous photos (which also include a handful of lighthearted, romantic shots in picturesque Eleanor Tinsley Park). “During their entire session I encouraged them to relax and be themselves. They immediately warmed up and were kissing, striking dramatic poses and sometimes just being goofy. I loved it!” Nyholt says. So do we, and we hope you do, too.

Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer
Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer
Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer
Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer
Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer
Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer
Sultry House of Blues Engagement Shoot by Adam Nyholt Photographer

Photos: Adam Nyholt Photographer

Juli & Kyle’s Spectacular Sunset Lakeway Resort Wedding

We get lots of inquiries from brides who dream of doing a destination wedding, but really want to limit travel to within driving distance of Houston. One of the spots we love most for a wedding that’s close to home but feels like a million miles away is Lakeway Resort & Spa on the shores of Lake Travis in Texas Hill Country. Minutes from Austin, and an easy drive from Houston, Lakeway Resort offers wedding coordination, catering for up to 350 guests, and a list of top-notch vendors, so you barely have to lift a finger to plan your perfect wedding. There’s world-class golf, sailing and the heavenly San Saba Spa, too, making it ideal for a weekend-wedding retreat. Plus, Lakeway Resort has got one of the most scenic wedding sites we’ve ever seen—the gorgeous Vistas Glass Ballroom, which instantly turns that incredible lake sunset into a wedding backdrop no amount of decor could ever duplicate. See for yourself, in these beautiful photos of Juli and Kyle’s Lakeway Resort wedding, by top Austin photographer Matt Montalvo! Gorgeous couple, beautiful wedding location and sparklers, too! Who could ask for anything more? Congratulations, Juli and Kyle!

Juli & Kyle’s Spectacular Sunset Lakeway Resort Wedding
Juli & Kyle’s Spectacular Sunset Lakeway Resort Wedding
Juli & Kyle’s Spectacular Sunset Lakeway Resort Wedding
Juli & Kyle’s Spectacular Sunset Lakeway Resort Wedding
Juli & Kyle’s Spectacular Sunset Lakeway Resort Wedding

Photos: Matt Montalvo Photography

Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson

This retro-adorable engagement shoot from oh-so-talented Rachel Robinson is one of the sweetest we’ve seen. But the love story behind Amanda and Brandon’s engagement? That’s even sweeter.

Little did small-town Canadian girl Amanda know she’d end up with native Houstonian Brandon, all those afternoons she spent daydreaming on the shore of tiny Nipper’s Harbour, Newfoundland. But when Amanda, all grown up, with a degree in mechanical engineering, moved to Houston where several of her friends had put down roots, she couldn’t help but notice that cutie at the bar, the one wearing Chuck Taylors—just like the ones she was wearing! Sure, they got to talking, and even shared a smooch. But it wasn’t until the next night, when she ended up at the same bar to watch college football with friends, and happened to hear a familiar voice call out, “Amanda Newfoundland!” that she knew something special was happening. Over the next few months, through long chats and ping-pong games (she won), and despite her heading offshore for a job, and his shoulder surgery, the two fell in love. Hard.

Then came the day when Amanda walked into the living room to see Brandon down on one knee with a little blue box (“which we all know means Tiffany’s!” she says). For their engagement—for which their parents joined them for a few adorable pics—the couple did a “fun and flirty photo shoot” in different parts of downtown Houston. “Brandon was the best, through all my girly ideas,” which included cotton candy, a tea party and tons of vintage styling, Amanda says. Through all the darling costumes, great settings and cool props, you can see this couple’s deep, sincere adoration for each other in every shot. Beautiful work, Rachel. And happiest wishes, Amanda and Brandon!

Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Vintage Tea Party Engagement Shoot by Rachel Robinson Photos: Rachel Robinson Photography

Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography

As you know, we here at the Houston Wedding Blog aren’t huge fans of the concept of the soup-to-nuts DIY wedding—mainly because we believe a bride should be as unencumbered by stress as possible on her wedding day, and in the months leading up to it. Also because there’s often a big gap between what a bride envisions for her wedding, and what she’s able, practically speaking, to achieve. Which can lead to stress and disappointment, which are two words we do NOT believe should be associated with one’s wedding day. Ever.

Well, every once in a while, a wedding comes along that makes us think, “Wow, DIY done RIGHT.” Jana and Buddy’s wildly beautiful fete at Wimberley’s Red Corral Ranch, magnificently photographed by HWB fave Sarah Ainsworth, is just such a wedding. Coordinated, with a minimum of stress, by Jana’s talented mother and sister, this wedding manages to take a variety of references—Victorian, 1950s, Western, indie-hip—and blend them seamlessly, with little fuss, and much fabulousness. Everything—from the bride’s floral-and-pheasant-feather belt to the maids’ darling blue frocks to the mix-n-match table runners to the homemade pies to the live peacock—is of a piece, in this wedding that just seems to have Texas deep in its heart. Congratulations, Jana and Buddy!

Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography Peacock Pretty Ranch Wedding by Sarah Ainsworth Photography

Photography: Sarah Ainsworth Photography~Bride’s Dress: San Patrick~Flowers: Infinite Flowers & Events~Pies: Texas Pie Co.~Venue: Red Corral Ranch