Elopement at Shofuso Japanese House and Garden | Kathy + Keiko

Kathy and Keiko stand together in front of a field in the sunlight

Pennsylvania is one of a handful of states that allows self-uniting marriage licenses. There is something undeniably intimate and beautiful about folks who want to celebrate their love in this way — with vows written on paper, without any pressure to perform for a large crowd of guests.

Kathy and Keiko’s elopement outside of Shofuso Japanese House and Garden in Fairmount Park was low-key in the best way possible. We started with portraits in the woods with their dog at the observation deck, Pavilion in the Trees, in Fairmount Park.

Their ceremony opened with a land acknowledgement — something I’ve noticed my recent clients incorporating into their elopements. It’s a simple, yet impactful way folks can disrupt the erasure of Indigenous people. I loved the tangled composition of the Japanese maple trees where their intimate ceremony took place. This has been such a challenging year for so many individuals and communities, so when we still find ways to care for and celebrate each other, despite it all, there’s magic there.

Venue: Outside the grounds of Shofuso Japanese House and Garden
Portraits: Pavilion in the Trees
Florals by Flower Shop Philadelphia

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