Who we are, why we do it the way we do…..

Eight years ago, I was invited by a friend of mine who is a wedding officiant to come with him to an elopement on the beach and photograph the ceremony. I borrowed a camera from a friend and suddenly became a professional photographer. I got paid for taking pictures. That was about 10,000 wedding photos ago. Eventually, I bought my own camera and my officiant buddy and I formed a company and called it Two Guys and a Wedding. Silly name, played off of a moving company franchise. We were both single, die hard bachelors at the time. I eventually started officiating myself.

The other guy turned into a girl two years ago when I met and married my wife and new photographer. We enjoy working weddings together and have found we make a good team when it comes to serving a bride and groom on their big day. The photography has greatly improved and a woman’s touch at a wedding is a must.

We considered it a ministry. I usually suggest a Christian ceremony to my couples. Marriage is hard. Why not invite the creator of the universe to be a part of it. Often times when a couple comes to Charleston to elope or have a grand destination wedding they need among other things, an officiant. Someone to make the marriage legal and conduct the ceremony. Preachers don’t typically travel or the couple just wants a civil ceremony, that’s where we fill a need.

It did not take me long as an officiant to realize I didn’t like marrying strangers. In an early wedding on the beach with about 70 people, I stood there as the bride walked down to her place in the sand in front of her soon to be husband. She was a beautiful young bride; could have been one of my daughters, and I barely knew her name! I introduced myself to her then and there and decided I would never marry a stranger again. It was awkward for us both.

Since then, I raised my fee to cover the time it takes to meet a couple prior to the wedding. We may loose some customers because we cost more than the other guy, but that is ok considering the alternative. I have found a simple meeting prior to the wedding day is a great time to get to know each other, go over the ceremony, and perhaps share some wisdom with the couple that would be of use to them one day. It makes it more meaningful for us all.

The ceremony is the focal point of the whole day, if but for the few moments it takes to get through it. I encourage couples to take the opportunity to say something to one another from the heart. Some take me up on that. Some are too shy. We married one couple that were not interested in the least, in being the center of attention. We married them at sunrise, everybody else was sleeping. I married a big tough police officer once, he stood there in tears as he told his bride in front of his friends a family, how much he loved his woman. A tough guy with a heart. My kind of man. There are many stories to be told about weddings we have been a part of. Each one is a privilege to be a part of. Where else can you have an opportunity to be a part of someone’s best day? What else can be more gratifying than to be a part of a new family being formed.

So…..we serve with gratitude in hopes that our part in your wedding helps make it a little less stressful and a little more special.

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A Charleston Elopement.

A good deal of the weddings we perform are elopements. An elopement is simply an intimate wedding with just the two of you. Perhaps the pressure of a large affair is too much. Too much money, attention, and stress can for some, spoil the moment. We recently married a couple at sunrise in downtown Charleston on The Battery. It was a beautiful spring morning in The Holy City. As the sun came up over Charleston Harbor a cruise ship was coming in, pelicans were skimming the water for breakfast, and the flowers around the park were in full bloom. It could not have been a more perfect setting for what was an intimate moment between two people.

We have married couples that were too shy to do it in front of a crowd of friends, too much in a hurry to wait for the grand affair. Whatever the reason, there are few ingredients we suggests.

Take the time to select a killer dress. This and a bouquet of flowers will make a bride feel special on her big day. No matter your age or size or shape, your new husband will forever remember the image of his bride on her wedding day. So, help him make it special. Men are visual creatures. Wow him without over doing it. Because you left all of your friends at home, they will demand photographs. Hire a photographer to capture the moment.

We have married people who would like to invite all their friends, but didn’t want to leave one out and invite the other. We have married couples that are just naturally rebellious and just want to get it done. We can assure you that more often than not, the sweetest ceremonies we witness are elopements. It is a chance to have a window to look into a relationship between two people so intense I feel invisible to them.

So get a South Carolina marriage license, a dress, and some flowers. Pick a date, book a room, and call us to officiate.

Two Guys and a Wedding, 843-513-2829
twoguysandawedding.com

Charleston Wedding Officiant

Being a wedding officiant is one of those unlikely occupations. It is rare, extremely rare, that someone grows up aspiring to officiate weddings. I fell into it quite by default. A friend had been doing it for several years and asked me to take some photos at a wedding he was officiating. Eventually, he overbooked one day and I filled in for him. The rest is as they say, history.

That was six years and many wedding ago. Charleston SC is one of the most popular destination wedding locations in the country. Some say more popular than Las Vegas. Where else can you find literally hundreds of venues that offer a backdrop like Charleston. You can choose from one of the many parks to plantations. Charleston has embraced the wedding business by offering creative catering, well equipped event rentals, and some of the best restaurants in the country. An officiant is someone who is legally able to witness the signing of a marriage license. That takes care of the legal part of it, but it is so much more than that. Because it is a destination, most couples can’t bring their pastor with them or they have run away to Charleston to elope.

I could write a book about all of the people I have met along the way and the experiences we have shared. You see, on a wedding day, you get people at their best. After all, it is a celebration! More importantly, it is one of those turning point moments in a persons life that can impact their identity forever. A wedding, a marriage, is a big change in a life’s pattern. When one pattern ends, another must fill its place. A great deal of the weddings we perform are for those getting married for the second time. Usually there are children involved and a wedding ceremony is a great way to invite them into a new union between two people. Realize at the moment the ceremony is completed, a new family is formed. It is exciting to be a part of it.

There has been a recent trend in conducting vow renewal ceremonies. What better place to take a second honeymoon and renew your wedding vows? I have had many a man secretly contact me to set up a surprise vow renewal with their wife. What better way to add to your story of a trip to Charleston? One family set up a surprise for their parents. All were at the beach for a week and realized the parents were celebrating 50 years of marriage. Along with the children and grandchildren we surprised them on the beach late one day with a bouquet of flowers and conducted and photographed one of the sweetest ceremonies I have ever been a part of.