Ah, Sadie and Jody. What can I say. This Butternut Tree Edmonton Elopement was EVERYTHING!
I was thrilled when they reached out and asked me to photograph their same-sex elopement at the Butternut Tree in Edmonton.
It was so unique in every way. They planned it exactly how they wanted it. Simple, relaxed, intimate and elegant.
It was my first time in downtown Edmonton for an elopement and I couldn’t be more happy with how it turned out for them.
The venue was called the Butternut Tree. It’s a quirky restaurant owned by Chef Scott Downey. It is a stunning venue, with its rustic wooden decor and industrial lighting with some large windows looking out over the City. It is a stone’s throw away from the beautiful Alberta Legislature grounds and just off Edmonton’s majestic river valley.
When I arrived, Sadie and Jody were having their make up done. It was all giggles and smiles and you could really feel the excitement in the room.
I asked them where their dresses were and they both laughed, it turns out they had several dresses each! And several pairs of shoes which was totally awesome!
What was special about this elopement was that they decided to get ready together every step of the way. They helped each other choose the dresses they were going to wear, and helped each other zip them up. It was so intimate and special.
We took a walk across the street into the Legislature grounds to enjoy the green trees and for them to really spend time together before they were about to say these important words to each other.
We stood on the steps of the Legislature building and took in its beautiful architecture. If you haven’t seen the legislature building before you should definitely check it out.
When we got back to the Butternut Tree there was a beautiful floral arch set up by Bud and Bloom [definitely check them out].
The wedding officiant was Joanne, who is a Life-Cycle Celebrant with Circle and Ceremonies and she really made us feel all welcome and relaxed. Her approach to LGBTQIA weddings was so inclusive.
She spoke a reading called ‘Touched by an Angel’ by Maya Angelou:
We, unaccustomed to courage
exiles from delight
live coiled in shells of loneliness
until love leaves its high holy temple
and comes into our sight
to liberate us into life.
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.
We are weaned from our timidity
In the flush of love’s light
we dare be brave
And suddenly we see
that love costs all we are
and will ever be.
Yet it is only love
which sets us free.
Both Sadie and Jody said their own written vows to each other. It was full of emotion and laughter and happiness.
They even had some family members watching on Zoom that they took the time to speak to throughout. That is a perfect way to still incorporate your family and friends into your elopement.
Before they sat down to eat their meal after the ceremony they decided that they were going to change outfits and put another dress on each. It was just beautiful. They enjoyed a slow dance together and sat at a sweetheart table as we watched on.
It was such an incredible honour to be a part of their elopement. Thank you Sadie and Jody!
If you’re ever visiting Edmonton and want some delicious food in a beautiful location, you should definitely check out the Butternut Tree. You can view the menu here.
Are you wanting to elope in the city? Is an urban elopement for you? Do you also want a Butternut Tree Edmonton Elopement? Check out my my portfolio or drop me a message and let’s chat about how I can document your love story.
The Person Behind The Lens
If you like unconventional, honest, friendly and real photos, I’m your person.
Sam Wildridge is a lifestyle photographer / filmmaker based in Wainwright, Alberta. Sam has been capturing wedding, family + corporate photos for 9 years and defines her style as "organic storytelling".