Tag Archives: UK

An Elegant & Eclectic North London Wedding: Tommy & Emma

Tommy & Emma were married at Stoke Newington Town Hall, with a reception at the amazing The Roost in Dalston, London. Far from a traditional wedding venue, it often plays host to TV or film crews and provided a really unique and quirky setting for their celebration. “Our wedding was homemade & eclectic”, Emma explained “elegant with rough edges… a bit like us!”

“It was really important to us that our guests felt part of the day and felt included,” she continued. “Instead of place names we found photographs of everyone from our personal collection of people over the years. We hoped that this would also spark conversation between guests that might not know each other very well. We also wrote everyone letters to thank you for coming on the day and with a special memory of our time together. Before the ceremony we gave each guest a outline of the day, so that everyone knew what was happening and when people were going to eat/drink and dance!”

“It was also so important that everyone knew how much we appreciated them being there. We wanted our wedding to reflect us, but also how other people have shaped our lives along the way. We pretty much did everything ourselves (with the help of our family!) We had homemade jams, chutneys and lemon curd on the tables as favours. This was a real triumph as everyone loves a bit of homemade jam! We also spent the whole year collecting cups and saucers, plates, side plates for our wedding breakfast. We handmade the table plan to look like bunting. Also, as emotions often run high at weddings we decided to screen print our invitations directly onto lots of different beautifully embroidered cotton handkerchiefs that we had collected.”

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A Mythical Gothic Anniversary Shoot: Emma & Owen

After their wedding Emma & Owen decided they wanted to do a shoot that really showed off their personalities and personal style. They hadn’t had any portraits taken at their wedding eight years ago, and so they contacted photographer Jess Petrie to ask if she’d like to shoot them.

Owen told us all about their relationship and why they wanted to do this shoot. “I met Emma when I was fifteen and we’ve been together ever since. It really was love at first sight – that’s probably the only way it could have worked as I was too shy to speak to her at the time! As a teenager with a paper round, I had to save up for an engagement ring; I picked a ring at a jewellers and went there every week to add to the down-payment on a tiny gold ring with two small diamonds holding a larger third in the middle. I’d literally go there some weeks with 82 pence in copper coins to add to the pot, but I paid it off eventually and took it home! We went to sixth form and then University together, Emma to study Fine Art Painting and me to study Film & Video Production. Nowadays, Emma is a successful portrait painter and I run a film production company and am about to direct my first feature film.”

“We got married just under eight years ago at Hedingham Castle in Essex, a Norman castle from the 11th Century. The wedding was brilliant, with an all-black dress code and we wrote our own vows. Being a film maker with a professional photographer for a father, most of my friends are pretty good at wielding a camera, so we didn’t hire a photographer for the day (we obviously didn’t know Jess then). I’d been to a few weddings where the photographer had made the whole day revolve around themselves which seemed to kill any romance or spontaneity in the couple; too much ‘Stand here! Move there! Now we need the Bride’s Mother and the Groom’s Father…’ for my liking when we just wanted a day to celebrate being in love. After the wedding we were sent discs from everyone and had just under 5,000 images to sift through which was great fun, if a little slow! One thing we realised afterwards was that although we’d documented the day thoroughly, it would have been nice to get a few shots which were just about ‘us’ rather than the event.  Hence booking in with Jess for this shoot.”

“Nowadays, wedding photographers seem to have evolved, thank goodness! I went to a wedding recently where the photographer got in a fight with the bride’s uncle over ordering people about too much, so it still happens and it’s not just me it bothers – but there is a new and wonderful trend for photographers like Jess. Essentially, it’s their job to be very subtle and just capture unguarded, natural moments where people are celebrating, laughing, crying and playing. If wedding photographers like Jess had been around in 2004 when we married, we’d have booked her!”

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Fish n Chips in London’s East End: Claire & Martin

What could be more British than fish n chips? It’s one of my favourite things and an absolute must when visiting a seaside town or hanging around London’s east end! Claire & Martin’s shoot took place at Poppies of Spitalfields.

“The idea behind this shoot was a vintage, very structured and posed shoot,” photographer Georgina told me. “I wanted them to resemble the old commercials that were made in the 40s & 50s, which would feature a nuclear family or a young happy couple enjoying the product advertised.”

Claire wore a vintage dress from the 1960s which originally belonged to Georgina’s mum. They also added a vintage suitcase, some simple flowers and dressed Martin in vintage attire. “We both decided to keep the feel of the images very simple because the restaurant and the couple are so gorgeous,” concluded Georgina. “We thought that they would speak for themselves in the photographs. As you can see, we ordered fish n chips for the shoot, but after we finished we all bought a meal and it was amazing, really yummy.”

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A Secret Garden Shoot for Henry Nicholls Antiques

With Summer just around the corner, what could be a better shoot to share with you than this gorgeous secret garden shoot? Using antique and vintage piece from Henry Nicholls Antiques in Worthing, the styling had a timeless but quirky feel. Photographer Jayne Sacco told me all about their inspiration, “Anna owns Henry Nicholls Antiques alongside her husband Henry, and her style is all about being individual. She sources a mixture of vintage and retro goods for the store, as well as carefully selected costume jewellery like the Ritzy Crystal jewellery featured in the shoot. Henry has appeared in a number of Antique TV shows from Trash to Cash, Secret Dealers and is a regular antique dealer on ITV Dickson’s Real Deal.”

“My inspiration for the shoot came from Anna’s daughter Coco (who modeled for us) and her love of garden gnomes. Anna has the most beautiful secret garden, it seemed the obvious choice for the location. I wanted elements from Anna’s cottage garden with a flavour of past times and faded memories of a bygone era. I also love mixing modern with vintage treasures. Without a modern context, vintage alone can look a little fusty. Mixing the two can create something fresh and timeless.”

The shoot’s colour scheme was inspired by vintage dresses they chose – a 1950s tea length yellow and pink flowery number and a 1940s white wedding dress. They picked up the colours in the flowers, accessories and props which really makes the  shoot work as a whole.

“We hand picked flowers, berries and green foliage from the garden and Anna gathered jugs and baskets and loosely arranged them beautifully,” Jayne continued. “Together Anna and I with the help of my good friend and fellow photographer Elizabeth Ruby Owen, styled the shoot. Anna’s garden has so many interesting areas and I had the idea of Coco doing a spot of gardening followed by afternoon tea while reading her favourite magazine.”

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A Carousel Wedding: Lucy & Mini

When you set your wedding around a vintage carousel it’s pretty much guaranteed to be a fun-filled and awesome day right? That’s exactly what Lucy & Mini had when they found Preston Court in Kent, and even the rain couldn’t stop them having the time of their lives! “Lucy & Mini chose an outdoor wedding and were married under a pretty little gazebo on Juliana’s Island which their guests sat across a little stream to watch,” wedding photographer Jennifer West told me.

“All was well until there was a huge downpour which soaked all the guests. Luckily everyone saw the funny side. Lucy & Mini walked down the aisle (well, the path) as husband and wife to ‘Lucy in the sky with diamonds’. The torrential rain lasted most of the day until the end when the sun came out and lots of fun photos were taken on the carousel while the sun was setting.”

The day was relaxed and fun with homemade touches everywhere. These included the flowers, the centrepieces, the stationery…and even the brides dress which her mother had made!

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A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Rock n Roll: Abby & Ian

Vivien of Holloway dresses are so beautiful, and many of the lucky bridesmaids in the weddings that I feature get to wear them…however when Abby got married she thought “why should they have all the fun?” and so she opted for a pink floral 50s inspired dress from their collection for her wedding dress! Pairing it with awesome cowboy boots and a faux fur jacket, she looked incredible.

The rainy wedding (it certainly didn’t dampen their spirits – like it could with the bride in a dress like this!) was held at Weald and Downland Open Air Museum, Singleton, and after a horse drawn carriage ride, the reception took place at East Dean Village Hall, East Dean.

“We really wanted to avoid anything too stereotypically weddingy,” Abby told me, “we just wanted the day to be a reflection of how we think about each other – just lots of fun! Neither of us feel particularly comfortable with formality and stuffiness – laughing, messing about and being childish are much more important! We wanted it to be something which could be enjoyed by everyone – from toddlers to our older relatives. We decided to give the some of the more traditional elements such as speeches, cutting of the cake and first dance a miss. However, we did do a spot of jiving to get me spinning and twirling around in my dress…it was too hard to resist!!”

The couple injected DIY elements wherever they they could, “Not only were we lucky to get a lot of helping hands setting up, but so many people helped in the run up to the wedding. My mum really is the star DIY pupil though as she made so much cool stuff – including all the cakes, the vinyl record cake stands and bowls, the bridesmaids dresses, the windmills and felt hearts! She even planted spring flowers in troughs (that she made herself nonetheless!) to stand outside the village hall. We made ribbon flowers to add to the tables as we thought these would be an interesting and unusual decoration. Ian decided that, having made some ties in a high school project many years ago, that he would hand make the ties for him, the bestman, the ushers and his dad – it turned out to be more time consuming than expected (and he wonders if any of them managed to still have them by the next morning….)”

The wedding had a really relaxed vibe and the ‘hoedown’ theme really got the party started! “I guess our theme was country and bluegrass,” the bride concluded, “from the Johnny Cash inspired ceremony music and readings, mixed with the rustic and rural charm of the US deep south – gingham, jam jars, JD bottles, banjos, barbequed meat and wild west lettering and signs. And of course, some cowboy boots thrown in there for good measure!”

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