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Gee & Ieva

Fine art bridal portrait
Ontario Barn Wedding Puslinch // Noelle and Ben 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

Ontario Barn Wedding Puslinch // Noelle and Ben

What made you two choose as barn as your wedding venue?
We both don’t drive and take public transit everywhere, and while considering a restaurant or event space downtown was tempting, I really didn’t want to see a TTC vehicle anywhere on my wedding day. Though we are both Italian, a hall-style wedding wasn’t for us. I guess I just decided on a barn because I thought it would be a good way to get people out of the city for an afternoon, and have them witness a wedding and party in a location that wasn’t traditionally associated with Italian weddings.
We looked at a couple of barns in near Guelph and Niagara, but really fell in love with the private barn venue in Puslinch. We were greeted on side by a pack of puppies, two adorable donkeys (which they no longer gave), and a sheep wearing a tweed coat. Immediately I was in love with the animals, the property, and how wonderfully the barn was restored. We actually found it through a posting on Kijiji – bizzare, I know, but it definitely surprised us with its charm and affordability.
And the best part? We could bring in 100 per cent of our own vendors. This is not common, especially with Toronto venues and wedding venues in general, because they make you choose from a list of preferred vendors instead. Allowing us to have total control over the catering, décor, music, florals, and cake, helped us save money in the long run. We booked on the spot for a June 2017 date, a couple of weeks after we got engaged, leaving me lots of time for wedding planning. We decided to do both the ceremony and reception all on site, so guests wouldn’t have to worry about commuting from one place to another.

Your reception décor was awesome. How did it come together?
I basically started doing a little bit each month before the wedding. I also have to give credit to Ben for allowing me to go with such a unique colour palette – we did magenta and cherry red, with accents of baby blue. Definitely not conventional, and I can’t even begin to tell you how many of my friends and family weren’t sure what I was doing design-wise. I kept telling them to trust my creative vision (hah!), however, I don’t think they fully were able to understand everything until the day of the wedding.
I spent countless hours surfing Etsy for the right accents, ordering our ceremony carpet from the U.S., paper lanterns (which we then covered in polka dots) from Canada, and laser-cut table numbers (which I hand-painted and glittered) from the U.K. I also spent about a year collecting vintage tea-cups, dishes, and little kitschy 1950s statues to put our florals in. I made our head table ribbon curtain and sparkle garland, spray painted mason jars for other flowers, bought giant tissue puffballs our bridal party diligently fluffed and strung up the day before the wedding (please forgive me), and designed all my own invites/menus/placecards using both Minted and my basic Photoshop skills from work.
My mom also helped A LOT. She was basically my assistant wedding planner. We didn’t order enough blue fabric for our table runners, and managed to get a rush ship of an extra order delivered the day before our wedding to her office. Her colleagues were contacting Canadian customs to see if they could get it released faster – and when it finally arrived – someone drove it to her house. The amount of care they all had for a roll of burlap was pretty incredible. My mom then sewed these table runners the afternoon before the wedding, while we were doing other errands. (Scroll to the bottom of the post for more gold on planing tips and fun facts from Noelle).

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How did you and Ben meet?
We both went to the same high school, but I was dating someone else at the time and Ben really wasn’t on my radar. He definitely wouldn’t have been my type back then, and I wouldn’t have been his either. We were complete opposites. We reconnected during university while both single, through a mutual friend. We shared an evening of pizza and whiskey, and then eventually figured out we really liked each other and had a lot in common. We began dating long-distance, commuting between Kitchener and the GTA, so there were times it wasn’t easy. We also both had a lot of growing up to do. When Ben finished his degree, he moved back to Toronto and we decided to get more serious about our relationship, moving in together. The rest is history.

How did he propose?
Fun fact. It is possible to ruin your own proposal.
It was a Friday night and I was in the middle of cooking a big dinner for Ben and a few of his friends. It was going to be his birthday party, and I had been running around in the kitchen trying to get everything done. Ben accidentally left his phone at home that day, and it kept buzzing as I was prepping the food. I figured it was probably one of his friends wanting to know what to bring, or updating us of their plans. We have an open-phone policy, so I went ahead to check the messages. On the screen I saw a message from his bff: “So you’re going to do it tonight? You have the ring?” I literally threw the phone away from me, into a pile of clothes, and pretended I didn’t see what I just saw. We had talked about getting married for a while, he knew the ring details, and he had asked my parents for their permission at their recent anniversary dinner. Again, we’re that kind of family where everything is out in the open, I just didn’t expect to blow my own surprise engagement.
When Ben walked in the door after work, I was in bed resting before the guests came over. He was holding a huge LCBO bag and I immediately, jokingly, asked him how much money he had just spent on wine – he likes the expensive stuff! He replied “I decided to go ahead and get myself a gift for my birthday,”…and then he popped out the little ring box, from the LCBO bag, and said something along the lines of, “If you would marry me, that would be the best gift ever!” Of course, I said yes! Little did I know he told all our dinner party guests ahead of time that he would be proposing, so the night turned into an impromptu engagement party with flowers and bubbly and our closest friends. PS – I didn’t tell him I found out about the proposal from the phone, until about a week later. He now has a passcode in place.

What role did your wedding planner play?
Laura from Marvelle Events, and her team, did a phenomenal job doing month-before planning. She handled all the invoices, payments, organization, and taking care of all the things we didn’t think about – like ordering a disposal bin for on-site waste.
We also had a second event planner through our caterer, P&L Catering, who handled all our rentals for the day. The barn was literally just a barn, so we had to bring in everything – including the kitchen – and have it built on site. The level of organization to manage how complex that was, was pretty astounding. The majority of our larger décor rentals, such as tables, accent sofas and chairs, came from both Marvelle and a few other vendors in the Guelph area. They helped add some glamour to the rustic farm vibe we were going for.

Tell us about your flowers!
The flower aspect was pretty simple. I am not a florist. I work in digital marketing. I can’t even keep a house plant alive. That being the case, I wanted someone to take total control of our florals. Once I found the most amazing, talented and just sooooo-lovely Robyn from Guelph’s Blooms and Flora, I had met my match. She was so excited about our project, fit our budget, and was close to the venue. Our consulting session was pretty open ended. I gave her our colour scheme, details about volume of flowers we would require, dropped off 100+ vintage vases, teacups and other holders, and basically told her to do what she wanted. The result was that the flowers turned out to be one of the parts people remember the most about the day. Everyone kept commenting how bright and vibrant they were, and I think this had to do with the fact that Robyn and her team were able to showcase their love of flowers whichever way they saw fit.
Our biggest floral pieces were on either side of us at the ceremony – two large sprays resting on top our respective families’ trunks from when they both crossed over the ocean, from Italy to Canada, as new immigrants. Having those pieces anchor the place where we said our vows, was incredibly meaningful for the both of us, and was a way to pay tribute to the history of our family.

Your food also wasn’t traditional – what made you choose the dishes?
We both love fried chicken, and wanted to re-create our favourite ‘Fried Chicken Tuesday’ dinner from Parts & Labour restaurant in Toronto’s Parkdale neighbourhood. Again – not traditional for an Italian wedding. The good news was that P&L were totally on board to whip up a fried chicken and BBQ brisket feast. Guests enjoyed cocktails and appetizers right after the ceremony, outside the barn. We also had a shucker from Oyster Boy, since so many of our friends and family love oysters. Dinner was served family style, with a trio of salads (including a modern Caprese and Caesar as a nod to our Italian roots), and then the fried chicken and brisket, with gravy, mashed potatoes, collard greens and slaw. Vegetarians got an eggplant stew served over corn grits.
For dessert we had an all-you-can-eat pie bar, featuring pies from the Pie Plate in the Niagara-region, as well as pies that were hand-made by my mom and her friends. There was ice-cream, whipped cream, and other candy toppings to satisfy people’s sweet tooth. Our cake was very simple and something we’ve eaten a lot of in the past; a vanilla sprinkle party cake from Bobette and Belle – a bakery near our old apartment. We cut it secretly and didn’t really tell anyone so we could just enjoy the moment to ourselves.

Do you have any planning tips and tricks?
Do as much as possible ahead of time, in monthly increments, so that way you are not stuck the month before your wedding dealing with everything all at once. Plan it out like you would a work project. Stick to your deadlines, beliefs, and budget …and don’t let any vendors push you around. Only work with companies that treat you fairly, and who have good people behind them. The wedding industry is crazy and there are a lot of people who prey on the emotions attached to the ‘big day’ for their own financial gain. We heard horror stories from friends, and truly avoided this, again because we were able to control all our own vendors.
Other planning tip: don’t rope your bridesmaids into doing an excessive amount of stupid sh–. They have lives too, jobs too, kids too, and need to deal with all of that. Sure, they helped out with a few crafts, and helped throw me a bachelorette party, but overall you need to expect to be ready to do all the planning work yourself.
Oh and yes – things will go wrong the day of your wedding. My dress ripped during the first look (there was a lot of tulle so it wasn’t a big deal), my veil attacked my dad during a windstorm as we were walking down the aisle (and it totally made everyone laugh), our bulk ice order got delivered to the venue the day before and almost melted (shout out to a local hotel for keeping it cool in their walk-in freezer), and our caterer forgot to order shot glasses. Everyone did shots out of coffee mugs, and it was not a big deal. In fact, maybe we’re going to start a new wedding trend…. #mugshots?

What was your favourite part of the wedding?
Obviously getting married to the love of my life was the highlight. Up there saying our vows, the world just stopped. It was such an intimate moment, even though were both on display. That feeling of total connection to the one you love, as you pledge your I-Dos, caught both of us off-guard in a good way. We waited so long to share that, I am forever grateful Ben and I found each other.
Beyond that, it was awesome seeing all of our family and friends enjoying the evening, and especially the food. And of course, as someone who planned the majority of her wedding herself, it was a dream to see it all come together. Months after the wedding we still have people telling us what a phenomenal event it was, and both Ben and I are so grateful for everyone’s support and love in helping us make that big day possible.

Looking back at all of the wonderful photos from Gee and Ieva continue to fill our hearts with joy, and they are such an important part of helping us remember how special our day was.

Music : – Bon Iver – 29 #Strafford APTS ( iTunes )

liberty village toronto engagement
Liberty Village Toronto Engagement // Courtney & Devin 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

Liberty Village Toronto Engagement // Courtney & Devin

One of the reasons our couples pick For People In Love Session with the wedding package is to see how the portrait session on the wedding day will go. For us it’s a good way to connect with our couples and see what direction we will take on a big day. After spending some time with you we often analyze what we would do differently and if needed to adjust some shooting strategies. What we often here from couples we worked with is how at ease they feel after photo session. It clears their mind regarding wedding portrait session, answers a lot of the questions about all the process and takes a lot of stress from their shoulders. On the wedding day you will have a lot on your plate and having one uncertainty less its a good thing. As we mention before For People In Love Session can be anything – your engagement, family portraits etc. Of course besides all the technicalities you will have fragments of your life and love captured that you will cherish forever.
Courtney and Devin decided to have their engagement photos to be taken in Liberty Village. That’s were they live and play so naturally corners around Carpet Factory and near Caffino restaurant was obvious thing to do. We met at School restaurant corner and continued further on. These two were amazing. Here is one frame for now.

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stoneacre farm wedding photographer
Stoneacre Farm Wedding Photographer // Noelle 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

Stoneacre Farm Wedding Photographer // Noelle

We recently photographed Noelle and Ben’s wedding at Stoneacre Farm in Puslinch Ontario. Ceremony was outside with magnificent Noelle’s entrance, you have to see it to understand what we are talking about we will definitely share that later. Wedding reception was at the barn, Noelle and Ben looked stellar, flowers and decorations were the bomb. There was a mountain of food and everything was just fantastic. It was our kind of wedding. For now… one frame with Noelle.

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berkeley church wedding photographer toronto
Berkeley Church Wedding Toronto // Lia & Mike 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

Berkeley Church Wedding Toronto // Lia & Mike

Berkeley Church in Toronto is unique wedding venue and thankfully will not be consumed by another condo building just yet. Sadly it’s not so great news for Berkeley Fieldhouse. This year we will be shooting some of our last weddings at the Berkeley Fieldhouse. Toronto attracting more and more people who want’s to live and play here and naturally city needs to grow. It’s kind of good thing from one perspective and not so great from the other. More people means more vibrant city and that’s awesome. It’s also sad to loose some unique places including some great wedding venues to a condo buildings. As space in Toronto shrinks many unique store fronts, coffee shops and restaurants closing their doors as owners can’t keep up with sky rocketing leases or just sold off to a developer. Once new building is build old restaurant, coffee shop or a specially wedding venue space is not necessary replaced with the new one. Buildings that are build without consideration for the neighbourhood destroys charm and atmosphere of the area. For us directly it means less interesting corners to shot at. New shiny building walls just don’t have the same feeling like old beat up but full of character brick walls. Would be sad to see Toronto become one giant condo with bunch of Starbucks coffee shops on concourse level. Hopefully we will still have enough awesome buildings left to celebrate unique weddings in and not be forced out of the Toronto to some banquet hall in the middle of a parking lot.
For now lets enjoy what’s left. Let’s celebrate warmth, emotion and uniqueness. As much as these words describe Berkeley Church it also describe Lia and Mike. These two not only embraced Berkley Church old atmosphere but also build a beautiful alter that they got married under. After spending little bit of time with our couple we knew that their connection to each other goes way back before this awesome wedding.

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Music : – Gem Club – Marathon (In Roses) ( iTunes )

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Kurtz Orchards Wedding In Niagara On The Lake // Lindsay & TC 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

Kurtz Orchards Wedding In Niagara On The Lake // Lindsay & TC

Last year we had a chance to shoot Kurtz Orchards wedding in Niagara On The Lake. An hour drive from Toronto and we were passing vinery after vinery and enjoying views of endless stripy fields full of grapes. Niagara On The Lake is always fun and refreshing, whenever you coming to explore some new amazing local vines, attending someones wedding or just driving thru and admiring the scenery. We love shooting outdoor weddings so Niagara On The Lake region is perfect for us. This time we shot two birds with one stone. Besides using Kurtz Orchards Farm And Market property we sneaked into Gracewood Estate near by for some photos as well. No matter which location you would pick for your wedding it would be awesome no matter what. Not only Kurtz Orchards venue has rows and rows of vines but peach trees as well. There were a lot of spots we were able to use for Lindsay and TC’s portraits. We endured some showers but when you have brave couple rarely anything goes not according to the plan. Lindsay and TC exchanged their wows at the peach tree oasis under the string lights. For desert during the dusk session rainbow coloured the sky for us so we were able to capture some amazing lit portraits of these two. We finished amazing day with fire torches and sound of live band.

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Music : – Roo Panes – Know Me Well ( iTunes )

propeller coffee wedding
Propeller Coffee Wedding Toronto // Jenny & Matt 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

Propeller Coffee Wedding Toronto // Jenny & Matt

We asked for isight into Jenny and Matt’s wedding at Propeller Coffee Co. from Ali Harrison, a local paper cutting artist and owner of Toronto-based arts business Light + Paper and thats what she had to say.

I am not a wedding planner. I am actually not even a “wedding person.” But I do have a love for making beautiful things, an annoying attention for detail, and a hidden desire to boss people around. So, when my good friends Jenny and Matt asked me to help with a few aspects of their wedding, I quickly grew addicted to the power and soon became de-facto wedding planner.
Jenny and Matt agreed that they wanted to throw a chill, fun party for their friends and family, with great food and music. Neither of them had ever dreamed of the perfect 3-tier wedding cake, the designer gown, or the towering centrepieces, so planning the night became a game of “how can we make this the most fun?” and “how can we decorate with what we have laying around?” Luckily, Jenny and Matt know how to throw a good party, and I have A LOT of stuff laying around.
It was decided that Propeller Coffee would be the perfect venue for the relaxed affair. It was downtown, open concept, with outdoor space, and the rustic minimal interior meant that we didn’t have to do much to dress it up. Jenny and Matt loved the offerings from Citizen catering, and decided on both passed appetizers and food stations inside and outside. The menu included so many delicious offerings, my favourites were the oysters, porchetta, and tuna ceviche.
For the decor, we wanted to accentuate the beautiful space with some colourful additions. We added string cafe lights and rows of paper tassels to the ceiling, succulent centrepieces on wooden boards on the tables, polaroid cameras with Jenny and Matt’s faces as photo props, and our crown jewel – the hanging paper garland backdrop. The pops of colour in the decor perfectly accented Jenny and Matt’s outfits, her blue shoes and his suit, and the orange and pink in her bouquet.
Having an art studio and access to a lasercutting machine meant that we had a relatively easy time at the DIY aspect of the decor. We borrowed the tassels from a friend, and used vases and bottles we both had collected – the only tricky part was fitting all the flowers into my studio’s mini-fridge. Having decided to keep most aspects simple, we did want to create a magical and ambitious piece for the backdrop, and being a paper artist, I aimed high. We sewed together colourful paper shapes into long strings, to be hung in front of the large windows at Propeller.
Watching Jenny and Matt meet under the paper backdrop, with light streaming in through the windows was magical. They were married and the party could begin! With many high fives, heartfelt speeches, and polaroids passed around, the night flew by. However, the best moment came at the arrival of the Ice Cream Truck – when all the guests piled out to the street to order soft serve cones, popsicles and slushies. We danced around Jenny and Matt, who had tied giant balloons to their backs, holding sticks with photos of their faces glued to them in one hand, and ice cream cones in the other – the funnest, most perfect moment that still makes me uncontrollably smile.

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Music : – alt-J – Warm Foothills ( iTunes )

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Canoe Restaurant Wedding Toronto // Torie and Ioan 740 493 Gee & Ieva

Canoe Restaurant Wedding Toronto // Torie and Ioan

You can spot people with a good taste from a mile away. Torie is a designer at her own company Vessel Coasters and works as a creative director at Millie Desserts so their stylish wedding comes as no surprise at all.
What really stands out for us from Torie and Ioan’s wedding besides how amazing they both looked was the venue they have picked.It’s nice to find secret spots walking on foot in Toronto its even nicer when you are watching it all from the above. Where we ended up was Canoe restaurant on Wellington street. And of course to reach Canoe restaurant you have to travel horizontally as well as vertically a bit. By bit we mean 54 floors up. When guests were arriving at Torie and Ioan’s ceremony first thing everyone did was jump to the windows. Not only hight was impressive though. Ceremony room was divided in half so guests could see bride and groom from two sides. When Torie was walking down the isle she was walking high in the sky passing rooftops of Toronto towers with wide view of Ontario lake. It was uplifting.
After spectacular ceremony another door has opened and reception area soon was filed with family and friends. Tables at Canoe Restaurant were draped with flowers beautiful table cards and golden light from the west. Canoe is famous for their sunset views. While chefs prepared top notch food, guests enjoyed mingling with their fancy drinks in their hands watching downtown Toronto under their feet and sun slipping under horizon. We finished spectacular wedding day with awesome food followed by wild party and night lights of downtown. I hope you will enjoy this post and please check at the bottom all the vendors Torie picked and her philosophy behind it.

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Music : – Vancuver Sleep Clinic – Collapse ( iTunes )
A word from Torie:
I tried to keep our vendors pretty dispersed and tried to focus on local and small shops. I didn’t want to read wedding magazines or anything like that because I wanted it to be more of an organic process, and therefore more us; though because of that my info is kind of all over the place haha.
1. All of the flowers and things like the vases, bud vases and candle votives were by Lisa at Sweet Woodruff ( They were amazing and I was so happy with them.
2. My mom made all of our table runners and I found the card box at an antique market.
3. Invitations and table numbers were from
4. My dress was a Jenny Packham design and was purchased at White ( They were so wonderful and helpful in helping me find the right dress and then alter it to fit my needs.
5. Canoe provided all of the silverware, napkins, regular furniture, and they ordered in the ceremony chairs for me from an event rental company.
6. Ioan’s suit was Armani and shirt was Eton and was all purchased at Harry Rosen at Yorkdale. He also chose and had custom made all of the boys’ ties, pocket squares, and his own bow tie from their selection of fabrics.
7. My shoes were Nicholas Kirkwood.
8. I designed the wedding favours – they were leather coasters with gold emboss. I make coasters under my company Vessel Coasters ( :).
9. Ioan’s rose gold ring was made for him at Anice Jewellery on Ossington (
10. My platinum and diamond engagement ring was my grandmother’s and my little white gold and diamond wedding band was picked up in a shop ( in Kingston, Ontario while out with my mom. It was a great find! Took a long time to find one that worked and I was worried I never would haha.
11. Bridesmaids’ dresses were purchased through Elmwood Brides in Aurora, Ontario.
12. The bridesmaids’ presents (necklaces, bracelets, and earrings) were from Sterling in Kingston, Ontario. I got a few things in Kingston because I love their local shops. Our cottage is close by in the Thousand Islands region and Ioan and I met while attending Queen’s University. We still spend a lot of time in the area!
13. Our fun officiant was Catherine Kentridge from Custom Wedding Ceremonies ([email protected]). She did a great job of teasing info out of 2 fairly shy people haha and I loved her bright outfit! A lot of people commented on it afterwards asking if it made me mad but it actually made the whole experience super upbeat.
14. The dogs’ leashes and collars were handmade here in Toronto by Hound Collection ( and @houndcollection on Instagram), which is owned and designed by one of my best friends, Sam.
15. Our cakes were made by another one of my best friends, Christinn, who owns and operates Millie Creperie, Millie Patisserie, and Millie Cafe ( I work with her as Creative Director and manage all of her admin. We have a blast. She covered our cake with many packs of gold leaf!
16. The cake toppers were made by another friend, Jamie, who owns and designs for her business Little Bellwoods (
17. My hair, all the bridesmaids’ hair, and my mother-in-law’s hair was done by Kelly at Vescada Salon (
18. Our guest book was by Velvet Raptor (
19. Just a little special note, my dad provided the very nice 1992 vintage port we drank that night. When my parents had my older sister, a friend of my dad’s told him about the tradition of buying port from the year of your children’s birth. 1989 (my birth year) didn’t have a vintage year but he grabbed the next best one: 1992. So Ioan and I did our thank yous and toast with 24 year old port!

james gardens wedding
James Gardens Wedding // Torie 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

James Gardens Wedding // Torie

Recently we have shot a wedding at Canoe restaurant in downtown Toronto. Before heading to downtown we stopped at James Gardens for some greenery shots. We find James Gardens quite interesting park to shoot at. Front of the park is quite manicured and real nature people would call it cheese but sometimes you just have to dig deep enough and have a different point of view to find something unique. The other half of the park has a wild side to it that we would love to explore in the future. One more thing you have to be aware if you head to James Gardens on the weekend it is crazy busy. There were another four wedding shoots happening at the park once we arrived with Torie and Ioan. It goes without saying our couple was the coolest. Here is one frame with Torie from James Gardens.

james gardens wedding

The Doctor's House wedding
The Doctor’s House Wedding Photographer // Laura & Mike 683 1024 Gee & Ieva

The Doctor’s House Wedding Photographer // Laura & Mike

We rarely or almost newer shoot at the wedding halls. The Doctor’s House is a wedding hall and quite busy one but doesn’t look like one per se. Doctor’s House offers few spots where you can say for ever and ever till death due us part, they even have a small beautiful chapel. Laura and Mike exchanged their wows on the private patio by the fireplace outdoors. We would say not many of the wedding halls in Vaughan can offer this feature. Beautifully landscaped garden was perfect for Laura and Mike’s portrait session. Here is one from the weekend.

Doctor's House wedding photographer

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