Vendor Highlight | Melissa Schollaert | Luxury Destination Photographer

     It’s with great honor that we share a fun vendor highlight on one of our favorites, luxury destination photographer, Melissa Schollaert. When I started in the industry, four years ago, I remember scrolling through dozens and dozens of images by Melissa, dreaming of working with her in an upcoming wedding.  Her experience is only matched by her amazing eye for layout and the refined details of an event.  I recently worked with Melissa at the Governor’s Ball (more to come on that later!), and it was truly a pleasure.  Her professionalism, even amongst a group of peers dancing the night away, was incredible and her images never disappoint.  I highly recommend her for your wedding day or engagement photos.  I’m really encouraged by her interview below and love that her spirited personality shows through in it.  And, I’m even more in love with the images she has shared with us.  It’s a bit of a pinch me moment to have them grace our blog.  Enjoy!


                    Sarah Chancey and the Chancey Charm Team

destination wedding photographer, luxury wedding photographer, columbus, atlanta, charleston, dc, richmond


Youngstown, Ohio

What’s your area of expertise?

Wedding Photography

What brought you to the wedding industry?

It was a total accident. I volunteered to help a friend of a friend with some weddings. They were just starting their own business, I knew how to use a camera but had never photographed people, let alone a wedding. I (surprisingly) had so much fun with the first few weddings, that I started second shooting on the weekends and got to travel to many great locations for destination weddings, and that was it…I was hooked!

destination wedding photographer, luxury wedding photographer, columbus, atlanta, charleston, dc, richmond

Favorite restaurant and meal in the city?

Ecco in Midtown. The fried goat cheese balls…yum!

A lesson you’ve learned the hard way.

Not every client is for me, nor I for them. You must let go of the one’s that aren’t right in order to make room for something better.

destination wedding photographer, luxury wedding photographer, columbus, atlanta, charleston, dc, richmond

Favorite way to spend a sunday afternoon.

Exploring and Adventuring!

Best piece of advice to someone new to the wedding industry.

There’s no fast-track to becoming a booming business. Take your time, learn, research, educate yourself. Experience is earned.


Best piece of planning advice to a new bride

Two things… First, just enjoy your engagement! Share with family & friends and don’t jump into planning right away. Second, before you do any planning at all, you need to setup an overall budget of what you’re going to spend. From there, a great planner can guide you through the best ways to make the most of your budget and what you should be spending on certain things.

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Real Wedding | Foxhall Resort | Kinsley & Steven

     Kinsley & Steven were the first couple to get married in the renovated Stables venue at Foxhall Resort. When I first met Kinsley and she described her vision for a fun, elegant and southern party I knew we were going to have a great time planning her & Steven’s special day. The design was created based on a photo Kinsley found of a tall centerpiece with tons of candlelight on the table. From there, we created a color palette with shades of pink, cream and gold.
     Once she selected her wedding dress and bridal party attire, the details took on a cohesive focus – pairing rustic elements with plenty of feminine touches. Think burlap, lace, wood and sparkle. Her ceremony in the east wing of the stables felt like an intimate ceremony inside a hometown chapel thanks to the pews from P.E.W.S. and stunning floral statements by Stylish Stems.
     Guests enjoyed cocktail hour out on the back lawn with hors d’oeuvres by Gabe’s Downtown and a signature cocktail. They also enjoyed playing corn hole on Steven & Kinsley’s custom sets made by Crush Event Rentals. Lounge seating by Crush provided gave guests a chance to sit and mingle before heading into the west ballroom for dinner and dancing.
     Guest tables were topped with timeless I Do Linens and a variety of centerpieces thanks again to Stylish Stems. Kinsley’s vision for custom draping was achieved thanks again to Crush who added a soft, feminine touch to the wood beams above. The bridal party sat at luxurious farm tables from Crush and overlooked the dance floor as Kinsley & Steven took their first dance as husband and wife. Once the party started it could not be stopped thanks to Trotline Band! As guests made their way outside for the sparkler send-off, they helped themselves to the dessert bar created byThe Sweet Trend.
     Chancey Charm was honored to work with Steven & Kinsley on their big day and very grateful to Remedy Wedding Films capturing their wedding day video seamlessly!
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Five Questions to Ask Your Photographer & Your Shot List Guide

Atlanta Wedding Planner, Charleston Wedding Planner, DC Wedding Planner, Richmond Wedding Planner, Photographer Questions

The photographer plays such an important role in your big day.  Their work, just like your marriage, will stand the test of time and will allow you to look back fondly on your wedding day.  On a more practical level, you will most likely interact with your photographer more than any other vendor (except your planner) on your wedding day and their demeanor and professionalism will certainly effect your ability to relax and enjoy the festivities. If you are going to splurge in any category, I recommend this be the one! A photographer can truly enhance the way your wedding day is preserved.  If you find a photographer that is cheaper than anyone else, it’s most likely because they lack experience.  So please keep that in mind when comparing packages and pricing.  Finally, It is important to take the time to schedule an interview with a few of your favorite photographers to ensure your personalities work together and you can trust them with one of the most precious memories of your life.

Here are five questions I encourage you to ask your photographer
  1. Will you have a second shooter with you to capture as much as possible?
  2. May I see three or four FULL weddings that you have personally shot? ( Do not be fooled by a photographer  who only shows you a shot here or there from several different weddings.  You want to know your photographer will do an incredible job from start to finish.)
  3. What kind of lighting are you experienced in? ( If you are having an indoor ballroom wedding or late night soiree with limited lighting, you’ll want to know they are capable and comfortable in those specific settings.)
  4. How much time does your standard package include? (Eight hours is standard for most photographers.)
  5. What is the turnaround time on edited images after the wedding?

About a month from the wedding date, it is wise to provide your photographer with a list of photo opportunities you really want captured on your big day.  This ensures that you are on the same page, and not left feeling dissatisfied with your collection of photos after the day has passed.  I also encourage you to ask your parents if there are any photos they would like taken.  This clarifies expectations for the photographer and allows them to work with your planner to schedule enough time for all the desired photos.  This will significantly eliminate chaos at family portrait time.  Below, you will find a list of traditional wedding photos to serve as a guide:

Basic Wedding Shot List:

Family / Wedding Party Shots:

  • Bride
  • Bride with each Bridesmaid
  • Bride with all Bridesmaids
  • Bride with Mother
  • Bride with Mother and Father
  • Bride with Father
  • Groom
  • Groom with each Groomsman
  • Groom with all Groomsmen
  • Groom with Mother
  • Groom with Mother and Father
  • Groom with Father
  • Bride & Groom with the Bride’s parents
  • Bride & Groom with the Bride’s parents and siblings
  • Bride & Groom with the Bride’s parents, siblings, and extended family
  • Bride & Groom with the Groom’s parents
  • Bride & Groom with the Groom’s parents and siblings
  • Bride & Groom with the Groom’s parents, siblings, and extended family
  • Wedding Party Photos
  • Bride and Groom Photos

Detail Shots

  • A Shot of the Bouquet and Boutonniere
  • A Shot of the Rings
  • A Shot of the Bride’s Gown and Shoes
  • A Shot of the Ceremony Before the Wedding
  • A Shot of the Reception Before Guests Enter
  • A Shot of the Cake
  • A Shot of the Getaway Car

For more wedding planning advice, check out my ebook, ThePractical Guide to Planning Your Wedding

 photo by Haley Sheffield

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