I was absolutely thrilled to be asked to photograph Lizzie and James’s wedding. The happy couple chose to get married at St Mary’s Church in East Bergholt and followed their ceremony with a reception at the beautiful Woolverstone Hall on the Shotley Peninsula.
Helen, my second shooter, spent time with the boys whilst I photographed the girls getting ready. It was a relaxed and fun morning and all too soon it was time to go to the church to await the bride’s arrival.
Lizzie looked gorgeous, grinning from ear to ear as she walked down the aisle accompanied by her father, and James was clearly emotional when he saw his bride. The ceremony was beautiful and very moving. A lovely extra touch was an additional short ceremony where James welcomed Lily, Lizzie’s young daughter, formally into their family.
After some group shots outside the church, we moved to the famous bell cage in the church grounds for some newly-wed portraits before making our way to Woolverstone Hall for afternoon tea in the Orangerie. The couple wanted mainly informal photos to tell the story of their day, however before tea was served I was able to whisk them away for some more formal portraits that they had requested in the beautiful grounds. Helen meanwhile was able to capture some delightful images of the venue and guests before everyone sat down to enjoy a scrumptious tea.
After the speeches there was plenty of time for mingling and chatting and everyone stayed outside in the warm sunny weather watching the children have fun on the bouncy castle and giant slide (and sometimes joining in!). In what seemed like no time at all the evening guests started to arrive and the party began. Lizzie and James chatted and laughed with their guests and the celebrations and dancing carried on late into the evening.
Huge congratulations to Lizzie and James, not forgetting Lily of course, and wishing them all a long and happy life together. Here is a little glimpse of their special day with a few of my favourite images, both from myself and Helen. I must say a big thank you to Helen who was an awesome second shooter for me and who captured some beautiful images in order to make Lizzie and James’ wedding day story complete.
Kim and Ian opted for a traditional church service in their home village of Higham in Suffolk for their marriage followed by a cosy reception at nearby Tuddenham Mill. The couple had put a lot of thought into their wedding to make it a relaxed and intimate occasion and they had a wonderful day surrounded by their families and friends.
Kim didn’t want a lot of fuss and decided to get ready quietly so my day began with making sure the boys both behaved on their walk to the church and also got to the church in one piece and in good time - well, you know what lads can be like! I’m pleased to report that they all got top marks for good behaviour.
Kim walked down the aisle looking absolutely stunning. She was accompanied by her Mum and Ian had a tear in his eye when he set eyes on his bride-to-be. The ceremony was beautiful and after a few photos outside the church with the couple and their guests, everyone made their way to Tuddenham Mill for a drinks reception and sit-down supper. The sun shone and we were able to arrange the group pictures that Kim and Ian had asked for in the grounds of the picturesque converted water mill.
The couple wanted mainly informal photographs as a record of their day, with the groom laughingly saying that if he didn’t know I was there I had done my job properly (he told me afterwards that I had met the brief perfectly!). Kim and Ian chatted and laughed with their guests over an informal friendly supper and the celebrations carried on late into the evening. There was a lot of fun, happiness and laughter and everyone really seemed to enjoy themselves.
Huge congratulations to Kim and Ian and wishing them both a long and happy life together. Thank you for making me so welcome on your special day.
Clare and Karl chose a traditional church service at Barham church for their marriage followed by a reception in the Stables Coffee Shop at Brightwell Barns near Ipswich. Their wedding was amazing and it was clear that they had put a lot of thought and effort into the day to make it special.
Clare started her bridal preparations at the couple’s house (Karl having been despatched to his Mum’s) along with her bridesmaids, her twelve year old twins Demi and Aaliyah. After the flowers arrived we all went off to the hairdresser’s, where I got some ‘getting ready’ pics, before coming back for a spot of lunch and the rest of the bridal preparations. Meanwhile John, who I was photographing the wedding with, was having a ball in Felixstowe with the boys and, from what I hear, did a good job in calming the nerves and keeping some sort of order.
Clare walked down the aisle looking absolutely stunning. Tobias, Clare and Karl’s five year old son, gave her away (he was awesome!) and when Karl saw them in church for the first time he had to wipe away the tears. The service was beautiful and over far too soon; it sounds a bit corny but you really wanted to bottle the emotion and keep it for ever.
We had planned for the formal photographs to be taken outside, both at the church and reception, however the weather had other plans and at 3pm, just when the wedding began, the rain poured down, continuing for the rest of the day. The vicar very kindly let us use the church after the service for the formal group pictures and also the church porch for the confetti throw so we were able to keep dry on a very soggy afternoon as well as getting some memorable images for the wedding album.
The wedding party took over the Stables Coffee Shop for the afternoon and evening and the owners did Clare and Karl proud, providing a fabulous buffet and decorating the venue beautifully. The sweets table was definitely a hit with both young and old and the kids loved the bouncy castle.
The planned formal photographs of the newly-weds in the grounds and by the lake had to be abandoned due to the weather and the first dance was moved from outside into the marquee, but Clare and Karl did not let the rain ruin their day. Everyone had so much fun and there was a lot of happiness and laughter.
Huge congratulations to Clare and Karl and wishing them both a long and happy life together.
India and Steve chose Hengrave Hall in the picturesque West Suffolk village of Hengrave, just north of Bury St Edmunds, for their wedding in September. Hengrave Hall is an absolutely stunning tudor mansion with grand halls, its own church and beautiful gardens. Timeless yet stylish it is one of the premier wedding venues in Suffolk and it provided a simply gorgeous setting for India and Steve to celebrate their marriage.
India and Steve asked me to take reportage-style photos of their wedding with no styled or posed shots at all, just a record of their day. They were keen to have a fresh approach with a really spontaneous remit and candid, fun images of their guests. Their idea was to concentrate on the mood and details: capturing the moment through people's expressions, small details and funny gestures. The images were then shown to the wedding party and guests during the evening on a large screen; fresh, current and really reflective of what was going on.
Dachshunds are very dear to India and Steve and they formed an integral part of the wedding. Saffron and Rufus were ushers and dachshund motifs appeared in the table decorations and on the menu cards. We even found a stone dachshund in the church!
If I had to find one word to describe this wedding, it would be ‘fun’. India and Steve really went the extra mile to make sure that their guests were entertained throughout the day. Everyone really enjoyed themselves and were welcoming and friendly. The sun shone and the bride and groom (along with Saffron and Rufus) really stole the show. India looked stunning in a dress that she had made herself (in fact she made three dresses and each made an appearance at some point during the day!) and Steve wore his military uniform with unconcealed pride. It was an absolutely fabulous day, with the party going on long into the evening as India and Steve celebrated with their family and friends. Many congratulations India and Steve, you guys rocked!
Helen and Alistair chose the Athenaeum in the picturesque Suffolk market town of Bury St. Edmunds for their wedding ceremony. The happy couple enjoyed a lovely intimate day shared with their families and close friends, some of whom had travelled over from America to join in with the celebrations.
In contrast to the weekend before, the sun shone so we took advantage of the nearby Abbey Gardens for some pre-ceremony photographs. The gardens were just coming into bloom which was perfect. The beautiful setting provided the perfect opportunity for some relaxed and engaging pictures of the bride and groom.
Alistair looked very dapper however Helen stole the show in a stunning and glamorous Jackie Onassis-style outfit. The ceremony went smoothly with the newly-married couple and their guests mingling happily afterwards. A reception lunch followed at Maison Bleue, an award-winning French restaurant nearby. Luckily the sun continued to shine so the wedding party walked to the restaurant along a charming lane which added to the atmosphere and the desired happy informality of the day.
Both Helen and Alistair were keen to have an album of natural shots rather than formal posed images. This was a task made so much easier by the friendliness of the wedding guests; everyone was so welcoming that I felt more like a guest myself than a wedding photographer!
Many congratulations to Helen and Alistair. It was both an honour and a joy to photograph their wedding.