When Matt and Jessica asked me to shoot their Snoqualmie Falls elopement, they were actually worried that I wouldn’t want to photograph them at the bottom of the falls. Silly Matt and Jessica! As I recall, I brought up the idea first and they were relieved. Or maybe it was that I was thinking about asking during our entire conversation until they brought it up. Who knows! All that matters is that we were all excited about the prospect of a gorgeous Snoqualmie Falls elopement and it turned out beautifully.
Matt and Jessica didn’t want to make a huge deal out of their wedding, just like many other eloping couples. They were mostly concerned about getting amazing photos and enjoying their time with the few special people that they did invite. This was an elopement in the sense that it was small and took place relatively far from their home, so it was essentially a destination elopement. It was also very low key without all the bells and whistles of a typical wedding, but the backdrop was what blew us all away!
Enjoy this long overdue post of Matt and Jessica’s Snoqualmie Falls waterfall elopement. And be sure to see the bottom of the post for Jessica and Matt’s story in their own words!
- How did you first meet? Who, what, when, where, and why? Give me the dirty details! Well, keep it PG-13. 😉
We first met when we arrived at Fort Lewis. We were in the same unit and, I’m not going to lie, I thought she was cute. I initially tried to ask around and see if she was single but nobody truly knew. Finally, after courteous exchanges, I got the nerve to ask her if she’d like to grab a cup of coffee with me. Unfortunately she was in a long distant relationship at the time, so a friendship is what we developed. It turned out to be such a strong friendship and I don’t regret the way things started out for us. It was the foundation of the strong bond and close relationship we have. Throughout our friendship, we both went through some ups and downs with our own relationships. We always had each other’s backs, though, and supported one another as much as we could. Eventually, after returning from a long deployment, we both found ourselves single and stunned by the fact that we, two good friends, were undeniably attracted to one another. Our relationship moved quickly but everything just felt so right, and everything fell into place so well.
- If you feel comfortable, please tell a funny story that happened while you were dating.
Working in the military and maintaining a relationship with someone you work with isn’t exactly celebrated, it’s actually quite frowned upon. Initially, we tried to keep our relationship a bit of a secret, avoiding people outside of work or pretending we couldn’t just stare at each other for hours. But people eventually found out, and when they did it actually didn’t escalate the way we had thought it would. I guess it was apparent and people had already figured it out weeks prior. Many said they were happy for us while the others, who may have disapproved, just turned a blind eye and said nothing. Either way, it was a big relief and seemed a bit silly we tried so hard to keep it hidden.
- Tell the story of the proposal. Did you see it coming? How long was the planning? How did you feel? Were you nervous? Etc.
Oh she knew it was coming. I was searching for the perfect ring, or what I thought it to be, and finally decided that she should have just as much a say in it as I do; after all, she’s the one wearing it. We went to one jewelry store and I saw the look on her face when she found the one, her face lit up more than ever. I bought it the next day and took a few weeks to propose. She’d kill me if I did something in public, so I decided to ask her the best way I knew how. As we lay in bed, talking like we do every night, I started talking about the future together. I told her that I have been thinking about it for some time and that I’d love to see that dream come true. So… I asked. I don’t think she’s taken the ring off since…
- Tell the one thing you love most about each other.
We do everything together! We’re that couple that comfortably snuggles through every night and wakes up happy as ever in the mornings. She’s determined to do this for as long as we’re together and that just makes me the happiest.
- What does an elopement mean to you? Why did you decide to have an elopement?
An elopement to me meant that only our closest family and friends get to see and share our special day. We don’t have to parade around in front of a hundred people for someone to notice the happiness we share. It was small and special and made the people who attended feel as special as we did.
- Why was the location for the elopement important to you?
We both love the outdoors and what the state of Washington has to offer. Snoqualmie Falls is just beautiful. It’s exactly what people should picture when they think of the Northwest. Secluded and tranquil yet giant and powerful, the falls offer some of the best and most picturesque settings the area has to offer.
- What’s one thing you wish you would have known earlier in regards to planning an elopement?
I wish we had kindly asked our guests to keep their cameras and phones tucked away so they could enjoy the experience for themselves. Many of our guests were watching our ceremony through a tiny screen as they snapped away, taking picture after picture. It was a slight distraction for us but didn’t completely sour our attitudes and love for what was ultimately happening.