Last weekend, I photographed Kira and Matt’s ICONA Windrift wedding in Avalon, NJ. We had a rainy start to the day for their Jersey Shore wedding, but by the time they said “I do” at their traditional church ceremony, the rain came to a stop and we managed to capture everything we had planned on the beach with the most dramatic dense fog I have ever seen, such amazing luck! Kira and Matt had a very natural beachy vibe for their wedding that included the men in blue suits, bridesmaids in blush pink dresses as well as simple and timeless decor to accent ICONA Windrift’s beauty. They used a color palette of cream, tan and greenery with candles to keep the romantic vibe.
Kira and Matt grew up in the same town, but never crossed paths because they went to different high schools. Despite having some of the same friend groups and living less than a mile away from one another, they did not connect until college. Matt transferred to Gwynedd Mercy to play baseball and shortly after move in day they met and became friends. Matt would use any excuse to come see her in her dorm. He’d knock on her door asking for a pen, water, snack, etc. He would always study in the room just down the hall from hers and little did he know she looked forward to every one of those visits. After fall semester they headed back home to Washington Township for winter break, and it turned out their families homes were very close to each other. They met up for their first date in December of 2012 but it wasn’t until that June of 2013 that they made their relationship official.
Matt knew Kira was the one immediately on move in day at Gwynedd Mercy. Kira knew Matt was the one after their first date, they baked cookies together in comfy clothes over winter break and in that moment she could picture their lives together doing that all the time.
Engaged on 8/9/2020, the proposal from Kira: “It was a cloudy morning and I almost cancelled the beach trip thinking it wouldn’t be the best day. Thankfully we ended up still going, but a last minute change of street threw the plans again for another loop. Apparently I’m not the easiest to surprise! When I walked down to the beach I immediately took my cover-up off to get into my suit sat down to take in the salty air and ocean view. While unpacking, Matt pulled out a towel that said “Will you marry me?” and put it out in front of him on the sand and called me over. I was in complete shock! He had a photographer there to snap the most authentic pictures. What a perfect day and weekend of celebrations that followed.”
When they weren’t wedding planning, Kira and Matt love to hang out with their two dogs, cook dinner together (Matt is a true chef at heart) and watch new shows/series together. Their absolute favorite thing to do is to enjoy their morning coffee and breakfast together on their back deck when they have a rare weekend off together. It’s simple and really gives them time to reset from the long week. Now married, they can’t wait to grow old together, make new memories as husband and wife, see new places together, do many house projects and spend lots of their time with friends and family. They hope to have their own family one day and show their future children what true love is.
Their advice for couple’s currently planning is to remember that this day is about marrying the love of your life, everything else is extra. They were most looking forward to seeing each other for the first time down the aisle and being surrounded by so much love and support. They also couldn’t wait to dance and celebrate with all of our friends and family. Mr and Mrs Rakus are currently honeymooning in Hawaii! Thank you for choosing me to photograph your ICONA Windirft Wedding!
Photography: Susan Hennessey Photography
Venue: ICONA Windrift
Church: Maris Stella Church, Avalon, NJ
Wedding Dress: Free Love Bridal – Martina Liana – Essense of Australia
Bride’s Shoes: Sam Edelman
Wedding rings and bands: J G Kronenberger Fine Jewelry
Bridesmaid Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids – Bill Levkoff Frost Rose
Hair & Makeup: Hello Beautiful Weddings
Venue Florist: The Flower Company
Bouquets & groomsmen boutonnieres Florist: Flower M.O.B.
Cupcakes: Chocolate Face Cupcakes
Videographer: New Pace Wedding Films
DJ & Cocktail Hour Music: Events by GM
Transportation: First State Trolley
Photobooth: Magdalena studios
Neon Photo Booth Sign: The Lovely Glass Jar
Live Painter: Alicia Finger
Dessert: Ben & Jerry’s Catering
Are you looking for a photographer for your ICONA Windrift wedding? Did you know I am a preferred vendor at this stunning Jersey Shore location!? Click here to see all the recent weddings I have photographed here. Ready for more info? Click here to fill out my contact form!