Samantha + Stephen | Fort Collins Wedding Photographer | Agave Room Reception

January 7, 2020

Today for your reading and viewing pleasure on the blog, Samantha and Stephen’s beautiful wedding day. I had the best time being their Fort Collins wedding photographer this past summer. Actually, their wedding day is a special day for me as well…it’s my birthday! Some people may not accept jobs on their birthday, but I was happy to. These two and their friends and family made for a super fun day 🙂

Many years ago I was lucky enough to have Samantha and her family in front of my camera, for their Hudson Gardens family photos (HERE). When she contacted me again to possibly be their wedding photographer as well, I was thrilled! The day started with getting ready photos. The ladies were at this adorable AirBNB, in the heart of old town Fort Collins. Then the guys were over at the beautiful Elizabeth Hotel. After everyone was dressed and looking their best, we captured some group portraits on the streets and in the alleyways of Fort Collins.

Just like that, it was ceremony time! We headed to the St. Joseph’s Catholic Church where Samantha’s dad is a deacon, and officiated the ceremony. After the ceremony, and some family photos outside the church, we headed over to the oval on Colorado State campus for some bride and groom portraits, and photos with their wedding party. Everything was so beautiful and green on campus. Add in the great architecture and it gave them some really great variety in their wedding photos.

What an amazing afternoon for some colorful Colorado wedding portraits!

I haven’t had a ton of opportunities to be a Fort Collins wedding photographer. Therefore, I had not even realized there was a reception space at The Rio. It is called the Agave Room, and was a perfect choice for Samantha and Stephen’s celebration. It is a simple, blank space that you can make your own. Guests certainly enjoyed the mexican food, the legendary margaritas, and dancing the night away!

Some of my favorite parts of Samantha and Stephen’s wedding day included the ice cream cart they had at the reception.As well as when Samantha did a dress reveal for her ladies. They were all thrilled and there were smiles and tears all around! Likewise, the dance party was a major highlight of the day. Randy Rodriguez is one of my favorite Colorado DJs. He ran around the reception tables with a microphone and got all the guests singing along to “That’s Amore”. Another favorite moment was when a friend played the guitar and serenaded the couple for their first dance. That was a special surprise from the bride, for her new husband. It was amazing! Finally, the couple’s end of the night transportation was super unique and adorable…a pedicab!

bridesmaids in matching shorts and t-shirts posing with bridecustom bridal hanger at Ft. Collins Colorado wedding bride getting ready at Fort Collins Colorado AirBNBbride getting dressed before Ft. Collins Colorado Catholic wedding groom getting ready for Elizabeth Hotel Fort Collins wedding bride revealing her dress to her bridesmaids before Fort Collins weddingbridesmaids in navy blue posing in Ft. Collins alleyways before Colorado summer weddingbride posing in urban alleyway before downtown Fort Collins Colorado weddingdowntown Ft. Collins urban wedding portraits by Plum Pretty Photo groom posing on staircase at the Elizabeth Hotel before Colorado wedding ceremony
Once Stephen and the guys had left for the ceremony, Samantha and the ladies stopped at the Elizabeth Hotel as well. This was my first time shooting in there. It’s amazing! I love all of the modern decor, and the dramatic marble staircase.
bride hugging family at the Elizabeth hotel wedding bride and bridesmaids on luggage carts during Elizabeth Hotel Fort Collins wedding bride riding on luggage cart at Colorado hotel weddinggroomsmen walking down street in Ft. Collins COgroom and best man posing in alleyway in Ft. Collins Colorado groom posing against brick wall during urban Fort Collins wedding pictures bride walking down aisle at Colorado catholic wedding ceremony Colorado catholic wedding ceremony inspiration from St. Joseph's church woman crying during wedding vows at St. Joseph's Catholic church bride saying vows during St. Joseph's Catholic church ceremony by Fort Collins wedding photographer Plum Pretty Photographyfirst kiss at Fort Collins catholic wedding ceremony recessional from St. Joseph's Catholic Church ceremony in Ft. Collins wedding party posing in the oval at Colorado State University for Fort Collins wedding portraits Colorado bride posing for Ft. collins wedding photos at CSU Oval bride and groom holding hands at Colorado State University wedding brides veil floating at Fort Collins Colorado summer wedding photography session couple walking on Colorado State University during their Fort Collins wedding portraits

This is one of my favorites of their Fort Collins wedding photos! I love a dramatic veil shot! dramatic veil photo at CSU oval by Fort Collins photographer Plum Pretty Photographydramatic cathedral veil photo during Ft. Collins Colorado wedding pictures bride spinning in her dress on the Oval at Colorado State University during Fort Collins wedding photoscouple walking at the oval on CSU campus during Colorado wedding photosbride on groom kissing on the Colorado State campus indoor wedding portraits at Colorado State University
Off for more portraits in the alleyways around the Agave Room! No shortage of bride and groom photos for these two (which I always love and appreciate). downtown urban wedding portraits in Fort Collins Colorado wedding couple cuddling in front of graffiti wall in Ft. Collins Colorado St. Joseph's Catholic church ceremony and Agave Room reception photos by Fort Collins wedding photographer Plum Pretty Photographygroom lifting bride with city in background during Fort Collins Colorado wedding photos wedding reception details at The Rio Agave Room reception wedding reception decor at the Agave Room in Ft. Collins first dance at the Rio Agave Room reception couple laughing during toasts at the Rio Agave Room wedding receptionfather daughter dance at Ft. Collins receptionwedding guests dancing at Agave Room reception wedding guests dancing with glow sticks at Colorado wedding reception grandma dancing with glowstick at Colorado wedding reception couple exiting wedding on pedicab in downtown Fort Collins Colorado

I am trying something a little different with this blog post. As well as my other wedding blog posts going forward (hopefully)! I asked my couple a series of questions after the wedding. Therefore, you can get an understanding of the wedding day from someone’s viewpoint, besides my own 🙂 This will also give future couples advice and tips while planning their own wedding day.

What was your most anticipated part of the day? 

Samantha- Spending the night dancing with my husband and our favorite people

Stephen- Seeing Sam for the first time as she walked down the aisle

Did anything unexpected happen? What was the outcome?

The most unexpected thing was nothing went wrong! We had a perfect day. But in all fairness, our mothers planned the decorations so we have no idea if they were not correct.

What ended up being your favorite part of the day?

Samantha- Taking photos in CSU’s oval. I loved spending time with just Steve, MOH, Best Man, and the photographers. You can see in the photos how happy we are. 

Stephen- EATING. I was starving and the Mexican food was delicious. Plus, the Rio margarita is always something to enjoy.

What advice would you give to future couples for their wedding?

Samantha- Do something in the morning that brings you happiness. I woke up in an anxious panic. I am so glad I went to yoga that morning and worked out all those nerves. 

Stephen- FEED THEM FAST! Feed your guests with appetizers so they don’t get too wild before you arrive.

What was the biggest surprise on your wedding day?

I asked a mutual friend, and aspiring country singer, to sing our first dance. It was a surprise for Steve! It made the moment unforgettable.

Were you nervous? How did you squash the nerves?

Samantha- Yoga! 

Stephen- I wasn’t nervous. Note: we dated 10 years so it was a done deal.

What are you most looking forward to as a married couple?

Not having to plan for a wedding. It has been great to get back to our normal lives. We love looking back at our photos and remember what a great day it was.

What did you like most about working with Plum Pretty Photography?

Melissa is the best!!!!!!!!! She was so wonderful to work with through the entire process. From beginning to end, she was always prepared, professional, and a helpful resource. I’m so grateful she was our photographer.


Aww…thanks Samantha and Stephen for the kind words! I had the best time being your Fort Collins wedding photographer. I hope our paths cross again someday. Wishing you a lifetime of wedded bliss, and a wonderful 2020! Coming to the blog next, Erica and Matt’s Breckenridge anniversary session. Check back soon 🙂


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