Cassi Claire » Wedding Photographer serving NYC, NJ, PA, CT, NY

Chris and I love to schedule at least one session every time we travel someplace new! We’ve done sessions in London, Venice, Florence, Colorado and several other awesome places across the US…which now includes SAN FRANCISCO!!! (I’m not freaking out, you’re freaking out).

For Rachel & Alex’s engagement session, we got to photograph three architectural greats: the Golden Gate Bridge, the Palace of Fine Arts, and San Francisco City Hall! Oh, and I love that you can’t even tell it was like negative 1,000 degrees (aka 48 degrees) outside in these photos. Rachel was a champion in her sleeveless dress! I’m pretty sure she was imagining herself walking on the sun in order to stay warm! Congratulations Rachel & Alex!! I’m so excited for the two of you! <3

The Palace of Fine Arts in San Francisco is the PERFECT place for an engagement session or wedding portraits! I can’t get over these columns!

San Francisco was especially exciting for me because…I have a mild obsession with bridges. Yea, I’m super weird. Once, on a road-trip with a friend, we drove about 100 miles out of the way so I could drive the Chesapeake Bay Bridge & Tunnel (26 miles of, you guessed it, bridges & tunnels). While this would be some people’s worst nightmare…it’s like heaven to me! I love the art of the structure, but I especially love being the passenger so I can feel like I’m flying out over the water! Needless to say, I was pretty stinking excited to see the Golden Gate Bridge. No amount of Full House opening credits could prepare me for how beautiful it’d be in real life! <3

Sometimes the wind is my best friend…

San Francisco City Hall is an iconic photo location! Chris and I spent a whole afternoon there on a different day of our trip and we couldn’t WAIT to take Rachel & Alex there for some photos. Sadly, the inside was closed for a private event, but the outside is just as gorgeous!!

Side note: Rachel, YOUR EYES!!! <3

Rachel and Alex: Congratulations again on your engagement! We are so excited for you two!!! Thanks for spending the afternoon with us!

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Cassi Claire is a New Jersey & Destination wedding photographer
that specializes in outdoor weddings (vineyards, estates, tents, oh my!).

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We are home from sunny California, and today was our first day back to work…and it’s a Monday. Let’s just say I was expecting a lot worse! I emptied my entire email inbox, sorted the mail, cleaned my desk, AND Sam & Kristi’s wedding was featured on Wedding Chicks!!! Now that’s a good way to start the week! Check out the feature! :)

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I can still remember the warmth on my arms, the feeling of sand beneath my feet, and what was I’m sure a look of complete bewilderment on my face. We were standing on the beach in sunny Santa Barbara after just escaping the harsh northeast winter. Chris had turned to me and said “What if this was just our life? What if I was full-time with you and we could come to California whenever we wanted?” I had to fight the urge not to laugh. The thought of Christopher quitting his job so soon after we had just bought our first home, it had to be a joke.

“Are you serious?!” I finally managed to say.

“Yes! Just imagine it…we could live anywhere we want, work from the beach, go surfing in the middle of the day!”

I had to remind him, that as awesome as my job is, it does actually involve WORK! And while in theory, we could surf in the middle of the day, that would mean having to work all evening instead. Always the realist. That’s me. So many of my photographer friends boldly proclaim that they are dreamers, and I’ve had to fight that little voice that questioned my authenticity as a “real photographer” if I wasn’t also a dreamer. I thought the two had to go hand in hand. In order to succeed big, I had to dream big. But what if big dreams scared me? What if keeping a handle on today was hard enough? I’ve always been a one-step-in-front-of-the-other type of girl. Literally every last duck needs to be in a row for me to take a single step. I need systems and spreadsheets and templates and checklists…I need order and it has to make sense. I can’t just throw myself forward without a net! This caution is probably why I’ve never broken a bone! So imagine the surprise on my face when I replied…

“Okay. Let’s do it.”

The moments following involved snuggling in the sand, then dipping our toes in the ocean, then walking out to a Mexican restaurant on the pier. We relaxed our way through fish tacos with the smell of salt water and sunscreen just under our noses…my three favorite smells. Or at least they’re my favorite now! They’ll always remind me of that moment and of the big dream we started that day.

It’s been almost two years, but it’s finally happening! Look…I agreed to dream, but I still had to get my ducks in a row!!! I’m still me after all! So, two years later, the systems are in place, the spreadsheets have been made, and the checklists are all in order. CHRISTOPHER IS OFFICIALLY A FULL-TIME MEMBER OF CASSI CLAIRE PHOTOGRAPHY!!!! And I’m not the only one who’s excited!! :)

“Can I possibly be more excited? Never mind just escaping corporate drudgery, I simply love weddings. I love being surrounded by people on the happiest day of their lives! I love being part of a business that thrives on creativity and positivity! Most of all, I love working with my darling, my one-and-only, my buttface miscreant, Cassandra. I’m impossibly excited for the future ahead of us and all the wonderful couples we’re going to meet!” – Chris

We launched “Cassi & Co.” in early 2016 and this will be Chris’s primary focus. We are incredibly thankful to have so many amazing couples inviting Chris & I to be a part of their day. However, since day one of our business we’ve wanted to deliver a boutique experience to our couples, and that meant turning away couples once we reached capacity. Instead, we decided to invest in a small team of photographers who could carry our mission to serve these couples.

Cassi & Co. is made up of two Team Photographers: Lauren and Keri. Both of these amazing ladies have been personally trained by me, and I trust them to care for my couples just as much as I do! Chris will oversee our team and also take the reigns on C&Co. client communication (don’t worry, I’ll still be the only contact for our “Cassi Claire” couples!). He’ll take some other tasks off my plate as well (including my frenemy Quickbooks!), which will allow me to focus on business growth, marketing, and all the fun stuff! 

We’ll have more to share about Cassi & Co. in future posts, but for now, I leave you with this amazing quote our Pastor shared at church recently. Even though Chris was already full-time at this point, hearing this quote reassured me that we made the right decision! Cheers to escaping the grey twilight and striving for mighty things!!! <3

“Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure…than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much, because they live in a grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.” – Theodore Roosevelt

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Cassi Claire is a New Jersey & Destination wedding photographer
that specializes in outdoor weddings (vineyards, estates, tents, oh my!).
For more information visit www.cassiclaire.com!

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I know I say it every year, but I can’t believe it’s already time for our annual Best of Weddings post!!! I think 2016 has gone by faster than any year yet…so my prayer for 2017 is that the clock would slow down and that we would savor every moment. Looking back over this year, we did A LOT. We try to do a big international trip every two years, and this year we chose to explore England & Scotland. Spoiler alert, it was AMAAAAZING! We were also really intentional about spending quality time with our family & friends. Our motto was “collect moments, not things.” That’s probably why I feel like I blinked and the year was over – it was just too much fun! We also photographed some incredible weddings this year and connected with, I think, the best couples on earth!!!

To my couples: We can’t thank you enough. You bring such incredible joy to our lives, and we LOVE living vicariously through you on one of the most emotional days of your life! We love to laugh with you, cry with you, dance with you, and CELEBRATE with you. Every email we’ve exchanged over the past year, every phone call, every review you’ve left, every gift you’ve sent, every heart-felt thank-you you’ve given to us….it’s our WHY. We do this because we LOVE to serve you and we have loved being on this adventure with you! XOXO!!! <3 <3 <3

Hooray! You made it all the way to the end! I’m pretty impressed actually…this was a LOT of photos! But you’re not quite finished…what kind of friend would I be if I didn’t also include some ridiculous (terrifying?) photos of me in action?! Hopefully I’ll get around to doing a legit behind-the-scenes post soon, but this’ll do for now! ;) 

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Cassi Claire is a New Jersey & Destination wedding photographer
that specializes in outdoor weddings (vineyards, estates, tents, oh my!).
For more information visit www.cassiclaire.com!

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YAYYYY!!! It’s time for one of my FAVORITE posts of the year – our annual Best of Couples post! And that means our Best of Weddings post is coming real sooooon! :) This year, some of my favorite moments were at the beach. Chris and I were able to spend a lot of time with sand between our toes, sunshine on our faces, and ice cream in our bellies. It’s a hard life, but someone’s gotta do it!

To my couples: We ADORE you. We are so grateful you chose us and we can’t wait to celebrate alongside you at your upcoming wedding! Thank you for making my 2016 a bright, happy, light-filled year! XOXOXO! <3

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Cassi Claire is a New Jersey & Destination wedding photographer
that specializes in outdoor weddings (vineyards, estates, tents, oh my!).
For more information visit www.cassiclaire.com!

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Cue the confetti!!! Thank you to my incredible couples for leaving such glowing 5-star reviews on The Knot! We’re so excited to win this award again! My couples mean the world to me and I’m so honored they feel the same! Honestly, I have totally cried happy tears over most of these reviews and poor Chris has to deal with my ego for DAYS after I read a new one! <3 THANK YOUUUU!

“Only 2% of the 300,000 local wedding professionals listed on TheKnot.com have received this distinguished accolade. To determine the winners, The Knot assessed almost one million reviews across the various vendor categories—venues, musicians, florists, photographers, caterers and more. These winners represent the best of the best for wedding professionals that a bride or groom would want to consider in order to inspire, plan and book their own unique wedding.” – The Knot

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You know that feeling when you put the last piece of a jigsaw puzzle together? That’s Adam and Tracy. They’ve been dating for two years, and talked on the phone every day from the very first time they met. They yin and yang so well together, she even knew the proposal was coming! Tracy didn’t know exactly when it was coming, but she started to suspect when she caught a glimpse of the ring box in Adam’s pocket! :)

For their engagement session, we chose to embrace the history surrounding them in eastern PA. The Washington Crossing Historic Park was the PERFECT setting for these two as it reflects their best qualities – active, yet easy-going. This was such a beautiful engagement session, and I can’t wait until next September! Especially because, the rumor is, Grandma will tap your bottom if she thinks you’re cute! My new life goal is that tap of approval! I’m comin’ for you grams! ;)

When your engagement session is in December, you snuggle under a blanket. That’s the rule. 

You also have to bring champagne. That’s a new rule. 

Fun story: This park is actually where Chris and I did our engagement photos over 5 years ago!! We got married right next door at the Washington Crossing Inn!

Sparklies!

I love smiling, smiling’s my favorite! 

Tracy you are just the cutest! <3

We were having so much fun that we actually shot past sunset! I can never say no to twinkle lights!!! 

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– – – – – – – – – – – – –

Cassi Claire is a New Jersey & Destination wedding photographer
that specializes in outdoor weddings (vineyards, estates, tents, oh my!).
For more information visit www.cassiclaire.com!

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I’m super excited to have our second feature on TheKnot.com this month! Pamela & Ryan’s industrial-chic garden wedding is just AMAZING! From The Knot…”Taking the gritty feel of New York City and mixing it with a city in bloom, Pamela created a theme she refers to as industrial chic meets romantic garden party. So as not to detract from the raw space, they went with a neutral palette of dove gray, navy and mint with metallic accents for good measure.” Check it out here!

the-knot-pamela-ryan

View their original blog post here!

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