From a small countryside farm to a maple syrup house and, much later, to a garden market filled with pick-your-own raspberries, Brooklands Farm has a history dating back to 1875. Today, this prominent Muskoka wedding venue hosted Nicole and Hugo’s outdoor autumn celebrations. The party began early in the morning while Nicole and her bridesmaids prepared for the day ahead. Inside the quaint guest cabin, I was immediately drawn to the exposed beams in the ceiling, polished wooden floors, and an old-fashioned wood-burning fireplace in the living room corner. Upstairs, a wooden staircase led to a loft area with a view overlooking Nicole and Hugo’s ceremony location. To anyone considering a Muskoka/Bracebridge wedding, this venue takes you out of the city and into the natural world. I highly recommend taking a peek at their offerings online.
The GlitzGalz helped Nicole to feel amazing on her wedding day. The makeup process is certainly the time when it all starts to feel real!
The lighting in this little bedroom was, quite simply, a joy to play with. I love bold contrast — deep, dark shadows, and strong crisp highlights that draw attention to specific details. In this image, Nicole fastens her bracelet as her mother finishes tying the bow on her dress — a story within a story.
Brooklands Farm is so serene. From the rustic wooden arbour to the marsh backdrop, this shady spot was the perfect ceremony location for Nicole and Hugo’s union. Far from the city, the only audible sounds were those of nature — birds singing joyfully and the crackle or autumn leaves underfoot.
I love Nicole’s choice of bridesmaid dresses. Each the same deep burgundy-red, but a style unique to the lady who wore it, offering contrast while keeping a common theme.
I love seeing the guests get involved in the ceremony, whether through group singing, a unified vow response in which all state their love and support for the couple (“we do!”), or during the grand exit, as seen below. For an outdoor September wedding, asking the guests to throw leaves was the perfect compliment to the natural landscape and autumn wedding theme.
It was lovely to see the entire bridal party supporting Nicole and Hugo throughout the entire day. From fetching cold water bottles (did I mention how HOT it was out there?!) to carrying chairs for the image below, this group was AWESOME.
Brooklands Farm was beautifully arranged, with clearly defined areas for the ceremony, cocktail hour and barn reception. In between each main location was a picnic table “station”, with themed decor that completed the wedding vision. One station, below, served guests with delicious favours. Other stations told the couple’s love story in framed photographs, honoured relatives who were watching from Heaven, received guest signatures, and described events for the day. I have to hand it to Nicole and Hugo here — I know they planed every single detail, and it came together flawlessly.
Okay, let’s talk about two things: this incredible field of dreams, and Nicole’s willingness to stand in it on her wedding day. The field was located out of the immediate venue area, but was absolutely worth the few extra steps. I was drawn to the warm, soft light and the gentle breeze blowing through the tall grass.
I rarely post images of the typical “stand and smile” pose, and some people think that I don’t capture them at all! While most of my clients are drawn to my natural, authentic posing, there is always a place in a wedding for traditional-style images as well. These are often the portraits that are framed in wall galleries, and gifted to family and friends. They are absolutely important to me — and I love this one, especially!
The reception took place inside the main building at Brooklands Farm. The barn was very spacious, with two large traditional-style doors on opposite sides, allowing airflow though the middle. Guests were seated on either side, with Nicole and Hugo sharing their own table in the centre aisle, facing the speaker’s podium. This arrangement allowed guests on both sides to have an equal view of the couple, and the speaker. Across the ceiling, draped strands of mini lights spanned the entire length of the barn. Around the perimeter, a candle-lit glow added atmosphere and visual warmth to the space.
Well, I will admit it: I was 98% excited, and 2% nervous when Nicole mentioned the sparkler-lit first dance. Lighting an image is like balancing on a tightrope (or…at least I think it is…I’ve never been a gymnast). In the image below, there are two light sources: the sparklers, and the flash my assistant is holding behind Nicole and Hugo. Creating and capturing the perfect blend of each sets the stage for an incredible moment. Add in a stunning couple, so enthusiastic wedding guests, and a crystal-clear night sky…magic!
On our way out, Max and I marvelled at the literally thousands of stars overhead. It is amazing how clear the sky becomes only two hours North of Toronto.
An enormous “thank you” to Nicole, Hugo, their families, and the team at Brookland Farms for having included Flashback Photography in this wedding day.