Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon: Blog http://www.racheleligon.com/blog en-us (C) Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Fri, 20 Oct 2017 01:03:00 GMT Fri, 20 Oct 2017 01:03:00 GMT http://www.racheleligon.com/img/s6/v134/u320108094-o1052236922-50.jpg Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon: Blog http://www.racheleligon.com/blog 80 120 Key West Family Photos- Post Irma http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/10/key-west-family-photos--post-irma There are so many good people out there who have sent us messages, cards, you name it to help with the recovery of Hurricane Irma. It has been so appreciated! I must also mention those folks who had plans to visit Key West with their family that kept their plans! For that, Key West thanks you! 

Here are some fun photos I took at Smathers Beach earlier this month with the Smith Family. They come here every year and it was no surprise this fun family is from Kentucky! Thank you for visiting and being such great clients! It was a real bonus to get a boat in your family photos too! :) 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) family key photos west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/10/key-west-family-photos--post-irma Fri, 20 Oct 2017 00:22:00 GMT
Mr + Mrs Wylie Say I Do at Casa Marina http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/9/mr-mrs-wylie-say-i-do-at-casa-marina Congratulations to this super fun couple! After meeting while coaching their daughter's softball teams these two knew from the get go they were meant to be! Diana and Alexander were married at the beautiful Casa Marina on September 2nd, 2017! The day was filled with tears, laughter, wonderful food, and a heck of a good party!

They began the day with a gorgeous beach wedding performed by Steve Torrence. The couple was surrounded by their closest friends and modern day Brady Bunch Family! There are nine children between the two.The evening continued with decadent appetizers and dinner served by the Casa Marina. They dance through the evening and finished the night off with some sparklers and a ol' fashion September in Keys cool down... A jump in the pool! 

Cheers to you and your family! I wish you many years of happy tears! 

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant and Second Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Planner: Nicole at Simply You Weddings

Hair & Makeup: Lori Bolander Key West Hair and Makeup

Chair and Ceremony Rentals: Eventfully Yours 

Ceremony: Casa Marina

DJ and VIDEO: Jim and Joanna Copper Soundwave

Florist: Milan Event Floral and Decor

Officiant: Steve Torrence Key West Officiant 

Cake: Cakes by Karol

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) beach casa food key key west weddings marina wedding west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/9/mr-mrs-wylie-say-i-do-at-casa-marina Sat, 30 Sep 2017 01:46:57 GMT
Rachel’s Guide to Key West’s Best Rehearsal Dinner Restaurants http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/9/rachel-s-guide-to-key-west-s-best-rehearsal-dinner-restaurants Sharing a wonderful meal with loved ones is often a cherished part of wedding festivities. A rehearsal dinner welcomes guests and sets the stage for the big day, or, a restaurant can be the destination after a small, intimate beach wedding. No matter what kind or size of wedding you've decided on, Key West has many beautiful and classic restaurants to offer. Here is my list of recommended wedding dinner locations that can be a part of your celebration!

Commodore Restaurant

This elegant upstairs space offers stunning Old Town Harbor views. The Private Dining Room can accommodate up to 40 people for a sit-down dinner and 75 people for cocktails. The Main Dining Room is also available for private functions and can accommodate up to 110 people for a sit-down dinner. 

Hot Tin Roof at Ocean Key Resort & Spa

Locals and tourists alike consistently recognize the Hot Tin Roof restaurant of Ocean Key Resort & Spa as a "don't-miss" restaurant! It’s the perfect perch for spectacular sunsets overlooking the Sunset Pier at the end of Mallory Square. One of my personal favorites because of the amazing view. It also offers a spectacular brunch on the weekends. Go for the chicken and waffles for sure!

Harbour View Café at Pier House Resort & Spa

A beautiful setting for you and your guests! The Harbour View Café features pristine views of the Gulf of Mexico and Pier House's private white sand beach. The menu features a variety of island-inspired dishes and Caribbean cuisine. Seating is available on the outside deck or indoors with air conditioning.

Roof Top Café

Surrounded by flowering bougainvillea and cool tropical breezes, the casual elegance of the Roof Top Café has overlooked historic Key West for almost 30 years. Located near historic Mallory Square, Roof Top Café is able to accommodate large parties for indoor and outdoor events and offers special event menus to simplify your plans and budget.

SHOR American Seafood Grill at Hyatt Centric Key West Resort & Spa

When in Key West, dining on local fare from land and sea is essential. At the full-service SHOR American Seafood Grill, you will find a sophisticated space in the Hyatt Resort presenting area-sourced seafood along with breathtaking harbor views!

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) key west rehearsal dinner key west restaurants key west weddings rehearsal dinner in key west restaurant after wedding http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/9/rachel-s-guide-to-key-west-s-best-rehearsal-dinner-restaurants Thu, 14 Sep 2017 18:16:41 GMT
What's Conch Got to Do with it? http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/8/whats-conch-got-to-do-with-it If you’re considering a trip to Key West for a wedding, honeymoon, or just for fun, you’ve probably heard its nickname, the Conch Republic!

The story behind this name goes all the way back to the Revolutionary War. After America won its independence, those still loyal to the British, called Tories, fled to the nearest Crown soil: the Bahamas. Unfortunately for them, the British Parliament started taxing Bahamian colonists on imported food just like they had taxed Bostonians’ tea. In response, the locals said they’re rather eat conch - a large sea snail pronounced “konk” - than pay those taxes. And that’s what they did! Bahamians became known as Conchs, and eventually, many descendants of those Tories immigrated to Key West.

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Fast forward to April 18, 1982, when the U.S. federal government blocked U.S. Route 1, also known as “The Overseas Highway.” Intending to prevent drug trafficking and undocumented immigration, the feds started intrusive vehicle searching, causing massive traffic delays on the only road connecting Key West to the mainland. The major inconvenience, as well as the negative effect on tourism, did not sit well with islanders. On April 23, 1982, then-mayor Dennis Wardlow read the “Conch Republic Proclamation of Secession,” declaring Key West its own micronation. Hard, stale Cuban bread loaves were brandished as weapons, and the U.S. flag was replaced with a blue and yellow one featuring a conch shell.

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The not-so-intimidating rebellion didn’t last long, but luckily, the publicity around the event led to the swift removal of the roadblock. To this day, Conch Republic pride remains, and Key West residents are still called Conchs. Natives are sometimes referred to as “Saltwater Conchs,” and if you weren’t born here but have lived here for over seven years, you earn the term of “Freshwater Conch.” That’s me! After growing up in Kentucky, several years ago I fell in love with Key West’s character.

Now that I’ve photographed weddings here for over a decade, I know the island like the back of my hand. If you have a specific type of spot in mind for a photo shoot, whether it’s scenic, historic, or offbeat, I can recommend the perfect location. I’m always happy to brainstorm places with you that complement your personal style or unique relationship. There are countless settings here for engagement or wedding photography sessions, or just because!

I also love sharing my favorite places to get the most out of your visit to the Conch Republic. Please feel free to check out my guides!

  1. Key West’s Best Restaurants and Bars
  2. Best Happy Hours in Key West
  3. Where to Stay: Key West's Best Accommodations
  4. Rachel's Top Things to Do in Key West
  5. Your 3-Day Key West Vacation Plan
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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) conch conch republic freshwater conch key west key west conch key west flag saltwater conch http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/8/whats-conch-got-to-do-with-it Thu, 17 Aug 2017 18:19:02 GMT
Callie and John Dimond Say Yes in Key West on 7.171.7 http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/callie-and-john-dimond-say-yes-in-key-west Callie and John love Key West and opted for the sunset Around Key West Session two days before they said their I Do's.  The couple got ready at the gorgeous Ocean Key property where they chose a First Look option. It was emotional and super sweet. It was also nice to grab a few photos with friends and family prior to the Trolley ride over to the ceremony!  

The Dimonds were married at Fort Zachary Taylor on the lucky date 7.17.17 at 7:17pm! Yes, lucky 7's for this adorable couple! 

Best wishes to you and your families. I had a wonderful time capturing your perfect wedding day!  #destinationdimond

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Hair and Makeup: Elena and Lisa Key West Hair and Makeup 

Bridal Gown: Nicole Miller

Bridal Shoes: Adrianna Pappell 

Grooms Suit: Ralph Lauren

Wedding Planner: Kayla with Say Yes in Key West

Flowers: Karro Events 

Pre Ceremony Photos and First Look Location: Ocean Key 

Wedding Party Transportation: Old Town Trolley

Ceremony Location: R2 at Fort Zachary Taylor 

Reception Location: Latitudes at Sunset Key 

 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) key west weddings wedding http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/callie-and-john-dimond-say-yes-in-key-west Mon, 24 Jul 2017 16:02:45 GMT
Little Palm Island - Summer Wedding http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/little-palm-island---summer-wedding Recently we were involved in a styled shoot at the ever so beautiful Little Palm Island here in the Florida Keys. Though we dodged the storms and heat, it was worth it in the end to work with these amazing vendors!  

Here are so of the photos including a few behind the scenes moments!  Order your copy today at Florida Keys Wedding Magazine! 

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Location: Little Palm Island Resort and Spa 

Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Planner: Julie Shreck at Simply You Weddings

Videographer: Marky Mark J Pierson Wedding Films 

Model: Morgan Fraga

Dress: Key West Bridal 

Florist: Milan Event Floral and Decor

Invitations: Engaged Design Studio 

Hair & Makeup: Studio Marie Pierre 

Party Rental: Prestige Party Rentals

Featured and Cover Photo: Florida Keys Weddings Magazine

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/little-palm-island---summer-wedding Fri, 14 Jul 2017 18:57:03 GMT
She Said Yes- Key West: Rachel + Nick http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/she-said-yes--key-west-rachel-nick Congratulations to Rachel and Nick! I was so happy when Nick called and wanted to set up photos while he proposed to Rachel. We coordinated and he could have not picked a better spot at Fort Zachary Taylor to pop the question. Hope you enjoy sharing this moment with everyone!

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Key West enangement photos http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/she-said-yes--key-west-rachel-nick Thu, 06 Jul 2017 20:03:21 GMT
Alysse + Matthew Walavich Dream Wedding in Paradise http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/alysse-matthew-walavich-dream-wedding-in-paradise  Alysse and Matthew Walavich met when they were freshman in high school in 2001. It wasn't until 2013 that they became official boyfriend and girlfriend. These high school sweethearts got engaged on the pink sand of Harbour Island, Bahamas in December of 2016! They are super adventurous, and love to travel so it was no surprise they planned a gorgeous destination wedding here in Key West, Florida! 

The wedding day from start to finish was simply put.... perfect! The couple got ready at the jaw dropping  Casa De Casa Estate with their closest friends and family. I can not forget to mention the doggies! WOOF! We had London, Jay, Ali, and Logan approving and offering their love before the I Do's.  The couple opted to see each other before the ceremony for a First Look of the Bride. The Groom's face seeing his Bride for the first time in her stunning David Bridal gown was priceless! 

The two married oceanside at Fort Zachary Taylor where the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico meet. The set up was STUNNING! The arch was custom made and designed by the Bride and her Mother. The set up by Karro Events and Say Yes was flawless! After the sand was poured the couple sealed the marriage with a kiss! A "super" bubble machine sent them off to the reception in style! Upon arriving at West Martello Towers (aka Key West Garden Club) guests were greeted with champagne and hors d'oeuvres. The Bride's favorite was definitely the empanadas! Great job Catered Affairs!  

White florals, silver accents, and farm tables transformed the already beautiful garden club to a fairytale wedding. The chandelier was just icing on the cake! Job well done ladies with the planning and set up! A sit down dinner for the guests was served by Catered Affairs and  was followed by homemade gelato bar and wedding cake!

After a lot of dancing a maybe a few Patron shots... the couple had a true sparkler exit sending the couple off in to the night.

Oh wait.... It was Key West style ....so they were Duval Street bound! 

Best wishes to you and your families. It was a true honor working with you! 

 

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Video: The Amazing Jon and Jess Duo with Cineaverde 

Wedding Planner: Kayla with Say Yes in Key West

Wedding Dress: David's Bridal

Suits: Men's Warehouse

Florist: Karro Events

Hair & Makeup: Lori Bolander Key West Hair and Makeup

Wedding Ceremony Site: Fort Zachary Taylor state Park 

Officiant: John Hernandez

Signs/ Handmade Decor: iDecor4you

Rentals : Prestige Party Rentals 

Reception Site: West Martello Towers- Key West Garden Club 

Caterer: Amazing team at Catered Affairs of Key West 

DJ: Soundwave

Cake: Key West Cakes 

 

 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Key West Weddings food key weddings west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/7/alysse-matthew-walavich-dream-wedding-in-paradise Sun, 02 Jul 2017 00:41:51 GMT
Ally + Hunter Key West Wedding at the Beautiful Reach Resort http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/ally-hunter-key-west-wedding Along with their beautiful daughter Miller, Ally and Hunter said I Do in Key West, Florida at the famous Reach Resort on Saturday June 3rd, 2017! Every detail from the invites to the gorgeous leather name tags were very well thought out! Teamed together once again for an amazing set up and flawless evening was Erica from Simply You and Peter and the team from Milan Events. After the Unplugged Ceremony, the appetizers and drinks at cocktail hour were served by the Reach and dinner was just perfect. The evening continued with a major dance party and the ever so famous Cupcake Sushi! 

Congratulations to this beautiful family!

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Planner: Erica Fuhrman at Simply You Weddings

Ceremony: Gazebo at the  Reach Resort 

Ceremony Music: Chad Burtch 

Florist: Milan Event Floral and Decor

Officiant: Mark Johnson 

Chair and Ceremony Rentals: Eventfully Yours 

Cake: Cupcake Sushi

DJ Extraordinaire: Shawna 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Key West Weddings food key wedding west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/ally-hunter-key-west-wedding Sat, 17 Jun 2017 16:08:38 GMT
Kevin + Carlos Married In Key West http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/kevin-carlos It may have been a little on the warm side here in paradise, but it was a flawless wedding day for Kevin and Carlos! The flowers and decor were perfect in the garden setting of the beautiful Audubon House. One of my personal favorites was the matted Audubon painting guestbook. Such a great idea! Grilled surf and turf, a homemade mac and cheese bar, and ice cold mojitos were just a few of the favorites from the lovely Great Events Catering Team. Jimmy Cooper kept the upbeat vibe going until everyone was ready to head off to the after party. The grooms' send off was in true Key West fashion... Drag queen style. What a unforgettable wedding!

Congratulations to Kevin and Carlos!

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Videographer: Joann Cooper Soundwave

Wedding and Reception Venue: Audubon House and Gardens

Planner: Tera Slater Lucy Pop

Officiant: Elizabeth Weinstock Southernmost Reverend 

Caterer: Great Events

Florist: Milan Event Floral and Decor

Cake: Key West Cakes

DJ: Soundwave

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Key West Weddings key west wedding same sex wedding http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/kevin-carlos Thu, 08 Jun 2017 00:39:05 GMT
Holly + Todd Ocean Key Resort 5.20.17 http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/tollytiestheknot These two love birds meet in 2013 while working at Margaritaville! They were engaged July 8th, 2016 at a concert in Miami. Todd wanted to propose during the concert, but the security guard made him empty his pockets before going in. Todd found a big tree in a secluded spot to propose before security could ruin the surprise!

They said their I Do's at the beautiful Ocean Key Resort here in Key West, Florida. The day could have not been more perfect! Todd was so sweet that he wrote Holly several notes to get her through the day. She was to open one when her nerves were getting the best of her. My favorite was the one from their bird! Though their wasn't a First Look, I caught Holly's reaction seeing Todd for the first time greeting guests to the ceremony. Just precious! 

Congratulations to Holly + Todd. I hope you enjoy the sneak peek! 

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Wedding Coordinator: Lee with Swankey Events

Wedding and Reception Venue: Ocean Key 

Hair + Makeup: Isle Style 

Bridal Shoes: Manolo Blahnik

Flowers: Love In Bloom 

Cake: Cakes by Karol 

DJ and Party Starter:  Visualize Entertainment 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Key West Weddings key ocean photos wedding west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/tollytiestheknot Tue, 06 Jun 2017 22:02:01 GMT
Sara said YES in KEY WEST 6.4.17 http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/sara-said-yes-in-key-west Congratulations to Sara and John engaged yesterday at Fort Zachary Taylor here in Key West , Florida! John had contacted me to catch the proposal, and it was PERFECT! She Said YES! :) I am sooo happy for this super fun couple! 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Engagement Key West photos http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/sara-said-yes-in-key-west Mon, 05 Jun 2017 23:45:23 GMT
Nicole + Dominic Lombardo Key Wedding - Sneak Peek http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/nicole-dominic-sneak-peek Congratulations to Nicole and Dominic who were married at the Reach Resort here in Key West , Florida on May 21st, 2017! These two love to travel and take road trips together. The two were engaged in Key West in April of 2016 and it was only natural to come back and say their I Do's in front of their closet friends and family.

The day was absolutely perfect filled with blue skies, music by Rusty Lemon, and delicious food provided by the Reach!

Best wishes to you both!

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Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Assistant Photographer: Jessica Paar Robb

Planner: Nicole at Simply You Weddings

Hair & Makeup: Studio Marie Pierre 

Florist: Milan Event Floral and Decor

Ceremony: Reach Resort 

Officiate: Michael Veron with Conch Concierge 

Music: Rusty Lemmon Florida Keys Wedding Music

Reception: Reach Resort 

Cake: Amazing Cakes and Creations

 

 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Key West Weddings key photos wedding weddings west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/nicole-dominic-sneak-peek Mon, 05 Jun 2017 20:48:38 GMT
Carmella + Chris + Alex http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/carmella-chris-alex “Never love anyone who treats you like you're ordinary.” 
― Oscar Wilde

I absolutely LOVED meeting Carmella, Chris, and Alex for the first time a few weeks ago. They are no ordinary couple! These two are over the top fun, have adventure for life, and are very kind hearted! Even sweet Alex! Woof woof! 

I am very excited to capture their wedding day memories in December at Casa Marina! The Simply You Team and Peter from Milan will be creating the perfect vision for this couple! 

 

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) Engagement Key West Weddings key photos wedding weddings west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/6/carmella-chris-alex Thu, 01 Jun 2017 22:38:30 GMT
Shaun + Kristy- Engagement Photos In Key West http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/shaun-kristy Congratulations to Kristy and Shaun on their wedding engagement! They commemorated with a photo shoot in Key West, FL  at Fort Zachary Taylor! This loving, fun, and quirky couple loves spending time with their amazing kids. They also enjoy playing pool, grilling out, and watching local sports teams together. 

It was such a pleasure capturing the memories of your first photos as an engaged couple. Best wishes to you ladies!  sneakpeek-1sneakpeek-1 sneakpeek-2sneakpeek-2 sneakpeek-3sneakpeek-3 sneakpeek-4sneakpeek-4 sneakpeek-5sneakpeek-5 sneakpeek-6sneakpeek-6

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) beach engagement session engagement photos fort zachary taylor ft zach key west engagement same sex wedding she said yes http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/shaun-kristy Tue, 30 May 2017 18:19:38 GMT
Tarah + Colin Klein Key West Wedding http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/cckheartstdd Tarah and Colin got engaged at their favorite restaurant in Jacksonville Beach, Florida. Colin proposed on September 12th at Taco Lu and had everyone close to them in on the surprise. When it came time to plan the wedding it was no surprise they chose Key West! This couple loves eating great food, having a nice cocktail, and relaxing! 

Their beautiful ocean ceremony took place on May 6th, 2017 at Margaritaville Key West (formerly known as the Westin). The beautiful flowers were tastefully decorated by Milan Events and Floral. The backdrop of the ocean was breathtaking. The reception soon followed at Little Truman White House in a Southern Chic style set up by the fabulous Kristin from Swivel Group Events. 

DJ Jimmy Jamz kept the party going while the bride and groom danced the night away! The Junkanoos came to march everyone down Duval Street to the very private balcony of Irish Kevin's. 

 

Congratulations to you and to your families on a beautiful wedding day! 

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Vendors:

Photographer: Rachel E Ligon

Planner: Kristin at Swivel Group Events

Florist: Milan

Hair & Makeup: Studio Marie Pierre 

Bridal Shoes:  Badgley Mischka

Dress: Hailey Paige

Suits: Vera Wang

Ceremony:  Margaritaville Resort and Marina

Officiant: Steve Torrence Key West Officiant 

Cake: Key West Cakes

Music: DJ Jimmy Jamz 

Party Rental: Prestige Party Rentals

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) house key little margaritaville truman weddings west white http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/cckheartstdd Fri, 26 May 2017 22:41:17 GMT
Candis + Ken- Key West Wedding Pier House 5.13.17 http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/kendiswedding Candis and Ken (aka #Kendis) met in a subway in NYC on September 26th, 2013. They were both on their way home from New Jersey. Candis sat down next to Ken and that was all she wrote! :) Fast forward a few years later to this beautiful couple who said their I Do's oceanside at the beautiful Pier House Resort here in Key West, Florida! 

This perfect wedding day was filled with love, laughter, and a few tears of joy. Best wishes to you and your families!

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Videographer: Matthew Dockery DockLight Productions

Planner: Eric Baker A Modern Romance 

Florist/ Table Decor: Duarte Floral Design

Ceremony Location: Pier House

Officiant: Pati Flowers

Reception Venue: Pier House

Arch flowers: Say Yes in Key West

Hair & Makeup: Lori Bolander Key West Hair and Makeup

Cake: Key West Cakes

DJ: MB Entertainment

Wedding Favors: Cupcake Sushi

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) A Key West Weddings Modern Romance beach key wedding west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/kendiswedding Fri, 26 May 2017 21:39:26 GMT
Capturing Love in ALL its Forms http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/capturing-love-in-all-its-forms Love comes in many forms – all of which are worth celebrating! If you have perused my site or have worked with me in the past, you likely know that I spend a great deal of time with couples both leading up to and on their wedding day. I absolutely love doing shoots for these momentous occasions! But then I thought... why stop there?

My latest personal project represents a mission near and dear to my heart… to give anyone, in any life stage, with any type of meaningful relationship, the chance to honor the special bond they share! If you love love like I do, a complimentary Capturing Love Session offers a fun way for you and your loved one(s) to cherish the photos you deserve.

Who?

Anyone! Quite simply, this is for you & the object of your affection. I am envisioning couples celebrating their Golden Anniversary, proud cat moms, newlyweds coming back newly bronzed from their honeymoon, a single parent with their children, partners recreating a previous trip to Key West, young couples celebrating the anniversary of when they met, or a dog owner enjoying a carefree moment with their furry best friend. 

What?

The Capturing Love photoshoot is designed to celebrate love in its truest form, against a backdrop of everyday life scenarios. Family portraits and wedding photos typically are planned, staged, and arranged down to the last detail. As a wedding photographer myself, I can appreciate the need for carefully curating photos on these occasions. After over ten years of nuptial-related shoots, I understand the appeal of more traditional photographs. But shouldn’t couples also preserve memories from the “regular days” that make up the majority of their lives together? With this project, I want to collaborate with people as they enjoy the simple, natural moments that life throws their way. 

Where?

Anywhere! Relaxing at home, exploring the Keys on a boat, strolling down Duval Street, clinking glasses at the bar or restaurant where you first met, splashing in the surf at Fort Zachary Taylor, unwinding at the park. This is all about shooting real life situations, wherever you find yourself smiling in the course of your daily life. 

Why?

F. Scott Fitzgerald may have said it best: “There are all kinds of love in this world, but never the same love twice.” Love extends far beyond couples on their wedding day, and all those types of love are equally meaningful. This concept resonates with me on a personal level. As a lady with a beloved 8-year old dog, I would love to preserve precious moments with Connor. 

When?

Anytime! Please contact me to coordinate. We can figure out an optimal window based on your location preferences, availability, and other factors like which type of lighting may be best to create a certain mood. Most likely, the timing will depend on when you naturally engage in that certain activity or hang out in your chosen location. After the complimentary session, you'll have the chance to purchase prints of your favorite photos via my website!

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) couples photography session couples photoshoot http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/capturing-love-in-all-its-forms Tue, 23 May 2017 15:45:00 GMT
Say “Yes” to Key West for your Engagement Photos! http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/say-yes-to-key-west-for-your-engagement-photos So, you're engaged! Congratulations!!! 

Whether you're basking in the festive afterglow or already feel like there are a million preparations filling up your to-do list, you may be thinking about celebrating this special time with an engagement shoot. With so many tasks on your plate, it’s important to slow down and enjoy these moments. It’s even better if you capture those moments as photos to cherish for a lifetime, and it’s BEST if those photos are taken in Key West! 
 
Maybe you’re planning your wedding in Key West, or maybe the Conch Republic is an island you’ve always wanted to visit (do I hear “pre-wedding getaway?”). Or, maybe your destination wedding is at an even farther locale but you’d like tropical engagement photos in Key West for your wedding invitations. No matter what, this colorful paradise is an ideal place for your engagement shoot! 

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Everything that makes Key West perfect for a fun and relaxing vacation or beautiful wedding makes it conducive for stunning photos leading up to your big day. I have been a Key West wedding and engagement photographer for over a decade, and the exotic beauty here has never lost its allure. 

Because no two couples are the same, my engagement photography sessions can be completely customized to suit your tastes and personal aesthetics. My personal favorite is capturing a legendary Key West sunset as the backdrop. It’s tough to beat the breathtaking lighting of the golden hour! 
 
After getting to know you as a couple, I would love to suggest some locales that complement your personalities and give you amazing photos to treasure for years to come. If your wedding will be here, we could shoot at or near your wedding venue. Or, we can go to some completely different locations! Through the years, I have scoped out countless photogenic settings, ranging from classic to historical to quirky. Here are some of my go-to spots that showcase Key West for engagement photos! 

Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park

Ft. Zach for short, this 87-acre park is full of idyllic scenery. First, there’s the red brick, Civil War-era fort itself. Its contemplative arches, spiral staircases, and impressive cannons make for jaw-dropping photos. The park’s beach is one of Key West’s best and perfect for sunset shots and romantic silhouettes. For the sure-footed, the nearby rocky outcropping can give your photos a rugged and adventurous flair. Finally, there are palm trees at the water’s edge to capture Key West’s tropical vibe, as well as paths through a pine grove for serene ambiance.

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Located in Key West’s historic seaport, the marina can lend its many vessels as the setting for your photos! Especially if you two are nautical enthusiasts, the collection of sailboats and their towering masts make for romantic, stunning photos, especially during sunset! We can also capture an intimate moment of you two sitting or walking together on the dock.

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Postcard Mural & Mac’s Sea Garden

The great thing about this spot is that there are several perfect backdrops within a few feet of each other! The postcard mural on the side of Cuban Coffee Queen is quintessential; couples often use a photo with this background for their wedding thank you notes! Next door is Mac’s Sea Garden, a shop with vivid buoys and a rustic wood exterior that are ideal for nautical-themed photos. Right on the corner is a vintage truck, and around the corner there’s a colorful signpost that shows the distance to a plethora of locations. Cuba’s only 90 miles away!

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B. O.’s Fish Wagon

About a block away from Mac’s Sea Garden is B. O.’s Fish Wagon, which provides not only delicious seafood but also a one-of-a-kind backdrop for photos! This down to earth, open-air shack looks like it was built by a very creative castaway fisherman. Another vintage truck, covered in stickers, completes the funky setting! 

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The Key West Shipwreck Museum

This attraction commemorates a key part of the island’s history, and I love the building itself for photos in front of large rustic doors. The simple yet elegant background highlights the most important thing - you! There are several other fun backdrops here on Wall Street, including several kitschy shops and a landlocked replica of a wreckers sloop

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Higgs Beach Pier

Sand, sea, and sky meet at this picturesque pier! Especially if your wedding venue is the nearby Casa Marina, I love taking romantic photos at this location. You can walk along it, strike a pose, or even… jump off! Of course, we should probably plan ahead a bit if you’re interested in doing that!

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There are plenty more locations for taking photos that feature Key West’s island spirit! The above are just a few of my favorites, and if you’re interested in an Around Key West session, we can decide on your favorite landmarks as well as places that complement your wedding’s theme. I can’t wait to work with you on capturing these treasured tropical memories!

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) engagement photo session engagement photographer key west engagement photography engagement photos engagement shoot key west photography key west weddings wedding photographer key west http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/5/say-yes-to-key-west-for-your-engagement-photos Fri, 19 May 2017 15:27:54 GMT
The Many Faces of Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/3/the-many-faces-of-fort-zachary-taylor-historic-state-park The island of Key West is not very large, but did you know it's home to an 87-acre park that includes beaches, pine trees, and a Civil War-era fort? That’s right, Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park (or Ft. Zach for short) is one of my absolute favorite locations for photos!

Whether you’re interested in Ft. Zach for an engagement session, part of an “Around Key West” session, or as the backdrop for your wedding, America’s southernmost state park offers a wealth of picturesque settings for photos!

Fort Zachary Taylor

Construction on this brick structure began in 1845. Held by the Union during the Civil War, the fort was also used during the 1898 Spanish-American War. Decades later, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1973. 

The fort offers unique settings for photos, from its contemplative arches and spiral staircases to its impressive cannons. From the top, the backdrop is a dramatic vista of where the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico meet.

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The Beach

Did you know Fort Zachary Taylor originally was surrounded by water? Land was added around it in the 1960s, and it’s thanks to this that Key West now has one of its most beautiful beaches! The sand, sea, and sky make for a gorgeous setting for photos. It’s especially fun to shoot some photos of you walking hand in hand along the shore.

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The beach is especially beautiful during sunset! The lighting is at its most romantic and gives opportunities for fun silhouette photos. It’s also peak timing for passing sailboats to add some nautical charm.

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Rocky Outcropping

For the sure-footed, clambering onto Ft. Zach’s seaside rocks can give your photos a rugged and adventurous flair.

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Palms and Pines

Nothing says “tropical” like palm trees, and the park has plenty at the water’s edge to feature your island destination. We can incorporate them into some fun shots, like a clandestine kiss among the fronds.

Due to the warm climate, you might be surprised to see all the pine trees at Ft. Zach! Their presence around the park’s paths give a serene and natural ambiance to photos.

 

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How to meet me there

With its historical, natural, and nautical settings, Fort Zachary Taylor Historic State Park is the perfect place for timeless Key West photos! Do its possibilities sound like a match for you? Unless we determine otherwise, here’s how to meet up with me there!

From Old Town Key West, head southeast on Southard Street through the Truman Annex neighborhood. Signage will guide you to the park’s gatehouse. After entering the park (small admission fee not included), follow the long, winding road ALL the way until you reach a gravel parking area. You will see the ocean, a tiki hut, and a large piece of driftwood. I will be there or meet you there shortly! You can’t miss me - I’ll have a big camera!

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info@racheleligon.com (Key West Wedding Photographer | Rachel E Ligon) fort zachary taylor fort zachary taylor historic state park key west beach weddings key west engagement photos key west wedding photography key west weddings http://www.racheleligon.com/blog/2017/3/the-many-faces-of-fort-zachary-taylor-historic-state-park Fri, 31 Mar 2017 16:30:00 GMT