It’s so awesome to be able to watch a wedding come to life so true to my bride’s vision.  What made Mel and Steve’s wedding vision so unusual though, was that it was taking place in a very decorative and traditionally styled Toronto venue; the Liberty Grand.  This beautiful reminder of Toronto’s turn of the century lakeside complex  has an elegant Euopean decor and style.

What Mel and Steve wanted was a Gatsby inspired, Hollywood style wedding, and they were just thrilled with the results.  F. Scott Fitzgerald himself would have been impressed!

Hollywood spotlights were on the couple as they said their wedding vows on a raised platform stage.  And while they hosted their guests during cocktail hour, the room was transformed into a tropical Hollywood inspired club with palm tree decor.

If the wedding wasn’t enough, the couple surprised everyone with a first dance tango!

Mel and Steve, I’m so thrilled that you made your wedding style dreams come true, and it was such a great experience to photograph your fabulous day!




Venue:  Liberty Grand, Toronto, Ontario

Photographer:  Judy Jakusz


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She looked like she could step right out of a fashion magazine, he was sensitive enough to show that real men do cry on their wedding day.  Together, Tania and Thomas had a romantically simple and elegant wedding day held at two of Toronto’s most photographic wedding venues, The Distillery District and the Rosewater Club.

Tania’s lace cutout back dress was fabulous, and I loved her old fashioned sweetheart bouquet filled with pale blush roses and babies breathe.  Babies breath is coming into it’s own again lately in our local markets and flower shops, it’s a romantic hint of floral that certainly seems to be making a resergence in bouquets and wedding decor this season.


Thomas and the guys looked awesome in gray suits, with pink ties to match the blush roses.
The brick shades in the distillery district matched the bridesmaid’s blush dresses perfectly,  And I have to say the style Tania chose was true to her wedding vision.  Everyone was freezing with the wind off the lake, but you wouldn’t know it from all the laughter and smiles these ladies gave me.

Tania and Thomas chose to do a first look, a really smart choice when you want to maximize your wedding day timeline.  When I saw this image, it instantly reminded me of the scene in the movie ‘Titanic’ where Jack passes the note to Rose saying “Meet me at the clock, make it count”.

After the couple’s first look, and more wedding party photos, it was time to go back to the Rosewater for the ceremony.  The decor at the Rosewater features shades of gold and greens, which blended perfectly with Tania’s floral choices and dress colors.
The highlight of the ceremony was a solo by one of Tania’s closest friends, who adapted the Leonard Cohen song “Halleluah” with  lyrics she wrote for the couple.

After the wedding, it was back out into the Toronto streets surrounding the Rosewater Club.

Ceremony and Reception Venue:  The Rosewater Club, Toronto, ON

First Look Venue:  The Distillery District, Toronto, ON

Photography by : Judy Jakusz


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Who doesn’t love birthday parties, especially when you have a storybook cake, an outdoor BBQ, and lots of presents! I was so excited when Lisa told me the plans for her little man’s first birthday.  It was all about Dr. Suess, and the cake she planned to serve was certainly the co-star of the party along with the birthday boy.

Let me tell you, Natasha from Burlington’s mmmSugar Bakery outdid herself with a fabulous children’s cake.  It had bunches of colorful detail, and was absolutely delicious.

Just look at these delicious cake details…

cat in the hat birthday cake by mmmsugar jpgdr suess themed first birthday cakehamilton family photographer

Lisa is such an awesome mom, every session I do with her and her family is filled with lifestyle moments, lots of fun, and lots of feeling.  She comes ready to participate every single time.

Mississauga first birthday party photography

And of course Michael was more than eager to let everyone know he was turning one — okay we made I’m do the number one — but it was so cute!

toronto first birthday party photographyblowing out first birthday candles

Blowing out your birthday candles and then having a huge piece of birthday cake is enough to put anyone to sleep.

tired one year old after eating birthday cake jpg

This was one of the last photos I took as presents were opened – who says a family photo has to be perfect every time.  Family photo session are all about real life.  With a one year old and three year old, life is perfectly imperfect.  Busy days and lots of love, who could ask for more.

oakville family birthday party photographer  xo


Party Photography:  Judy Jakusz Photography

Birthday cake:  mmm Sugar, Burlington, ON

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I didn’t realize Toronto and the GTA was such a great place for cherry blossoms, I always thought you needed to travel to Vancouver, or Washington DC or Japan to appreciate these beautiful flowering trees.

The blossoms are so fragile, and don’t last long, and by now, I know what a big thing it is to see them in Toronto.  So for the past few years, I patiently wait for the cherry blossoms to appear, hoping to catch them at just the most perfect time.  This time, our weather was beautiful too, and I was lucky enough to capture this fantastic senior portrait session among the blossoms at Burlington’s Spencer Smith Park lakefront.

These two are so beautiful in their pastel dresses and white parasols!



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Enough with these gray and cold days … Paletta Mansion, early morning wedding, luncheon reception, who could ask for anything prettier?

I just love the shades of pinks in these wedding images.  It reminds me that warmer days are ahead.




Wedding Venue:  Paletta Mansion Lakefront Park

Wedding Photography:  Judy Jakusz

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