The Wedding of Claire and Nick
This past Friday saw me photographing the wedding of Claire and Nick. If your a regular blog stalker you will remember it was only a few weeks ago that I shot their engagement session photos and how that day started disastersly but ended up GREAT – you can see their blog post for there engagement photoshtoot here.
Well after double and triple checking everything Nikki and I (Nikki was assisting me today) headed over to Hanley Swan just outside of Malvern in Worcestershire. We arrived a few minutes early as we like to do that way we can load batteries and double check everything one last time before the day starts. We were greeted to a house in full flow, there were bridesmaids everywhere, mum and dad (of the bride) were milling around taking care of last minute details etc. Claire’s dad insisted we had a cup of coffee (always welcome) and even wanted to make us sandwiches but we had already eaten so we just cracked on. You can generally tell from the first 10 minutes your in someones house how the day was going to unfold and I knew today was going to be great. I have never met a more gracious family or been so well looked after at a wedding.
Well since we were a bit early Claire (our bride for the day) was still having hair her first round of hair being done so rather than take the very early stage of getting ready photos which never flatter a bride we started off with the dress photos – I had not known until the day before but Claire’s dress was an Ian Stuart wedding dress, one of my favorite wedding dress designers. So following MOB (Mother of the Bride) we headed off to mums bedroom – WOW is all I can say – the bedroom was a photographers delight – GREAT windows allowing fantastic light to spill in – light walls, light bedding, light carpet – the holy grail in terms of creating beautiful shots. – The view out the window was interesting to me as MOB’s garden looks amazing, it was very well established and beautiful. This gave me the idea of shooting the wedding dress outside in the garden so after quickly checking with Claire (who mentioned she had a feeling I may ask after seeing some of my other blog posts with wedding dresses hanging from strange places) and watching her GULP a little she said yes.
With all the respect and reverence a beautiful wedding dress deserves on its wedding day we carefully transported it to the garden and shot a few photos.
but we just had to shoot it in mum’s bedroom as well – it just made for a great photo
and since we are talking about dresses – the bridesmaids dresses were by Ted Baker and were stunning
and since we are going for all the dress and detail shots, we took photos of everything
I am not a 100% sure what they are called, I call them a featherry shawl but I am guessing thats totally wrong – anyway whatever they are called, Claire had 3 of them for her bridesmaids and after seeing them I knew they would make GREAT backgrounds for photos of the rings etc.
and the last of my detail shots at for the moment, every little detail of the day was perfect right the way down to the flowers.
See what I mean, I could have spent all day in that room just shooting but with time ticking we went to see how our beautiful bride for the day was coming along. I popped down stairs once again into the room being used as a make shift salon.
I have seen many many hair and makeup people over the years and there are only a few I would feel comfortable recommending but from the very first moments I met both Clare and Chris I knew they were very dedicated, highly professional and very talented – I would have no hesitation in recommending either of them.
Here Clare ( Clare Bryce – Pure Pampering – http://www.purepampering.co.uk) is working on Claire our bride for the day.
and here is Chris from Bridal Hair Specialists – www.fhdmobile.co.uk teasing Claire’s hair into place – the photo below was actually taken after Claire had popped on her wedding dress – I just happen to pick that one as I choose photos before writing the blog stories.
A lot of what the photographers, hair and makeup people do in the early part of the day is about putting the bride at ease, if you can work diligently but in a very friendly way its relaxing for the bridal party – the atmosphere in the make shift salon was very relaxed and this was even before the champagne had started flowing !
Here is another shot of Clare working on one of the bridesmaids (actually shot later in the morning but will pop it here)
Then it was on upstairs for the getting ready shots.
and the looks from the girls once Claire had slipped into her dress said it all
There are always very poinient moments at a wedding, in the next two shots taken just after Claire had put on her dress she reaches over to mum and gives her a big kiss to say thanks for all the help that went into making the day perfect. These moments are real, you cannot fake that kind of emotion and its photos like this that really capture the essence of a wedding in my humble opinion
meanwhile down stairs dad (FOB – Father of the Bride) was having a little trouble with this tie – in the end assistance came the rescue
At around this time Nikki popped off to grab a few shots of the boys at the church – it was now 12:00 (midday) and the wedding was due to start at 12:30
Nick and the boys at St Gabriels in Hanley Swan, Malvern – Worcestershire
If your planning a church wedding and are thinking of St Gabriels nr Malvern it really is a beautiful little church
Claire and her dad outside the church just a few minutes before walking down the aisle
and I love this photo – This is a shot of Claire peeking into the church just seconds before she starts her last walk as a single girl
and a very unusual carpet for our bride to walk down
I love the happiness that this image captures – Claire was beaming from ear to ear
and here during the singing I caught a shot of Nick grinning at his best man
and then as the happy couple went off to sign the register, the guests were treated to some truly amazing cello playing from “A special and close family friend”
and following that the happy couple came out and went up to the high alter for prayers
I actually shot the next photo a little later but it fits nicely here so have popped it in
then it was outside for a few photos and Confetti
At this point we all loaded into our cars for a 45 minute dash down to The Cotswolds. Claire and Nick’s wedding reception was held at the amazingly beautiful Manor House Hotel in the village of Morton on Marsh in the Cotswolds (Gloucestershire)
Manor House Hotel Cotswolds Wedding Reception
little did I know at this stage that the theme for the whole wedding was White. We (Nikki and I) were greeted at the hotel by Tom the Manor House’s Wedding Coordinator and he took great care of us. Tom led us to the room that was set up for Claire and Nick’s Wedding reception. It was beautiful and we set about taking a few photos.
Keeping with the white theme was the wedding cake (s)
right about this time I head the door open behind me, I looked over and saw Claire and Nick walking into the room to have a sneak peek before the guests. This is a bit of an outtake photo but it captured the reaction from Claire when she saw her cakes set up – The cakes were made by one of Nicks good friends. – again I love the real moment capture !
so after a few minutes we take an artistic cutting of the cake photo – as it turns out it was a very good job as the wedding breakfast ran on a little and the couple skipped the official cutting of the cake so this was the only cutting photo taken.
Then it was outside and while the guests were being entertained by a fab sax player I ran around looking for the good places for taking photos. For the group photo (with the hotels permission) I climbed onto the room of the hotel and grabbed this
Claire and Nick with Mum’s and Dad’s
then we shot a few formals and a few not so formals of which I will share this one with you – again a bit of an out take but a cracking shot IMHO
and then as the guests were being led into the room to get ready for the wedding breakfast I took Claire and Nick away for a few nice romantic shots.
then it was just gone 4pm and time for the happy couple to go into the wedding breakfast.
We retired to the bar area where Claire and Nick had set up a tab for us and had our lunch while we worked on putting the slide show together for the evening session and then it was back into the room for the speeches photos of which I will share a couple with you.
and the best man trying to have a hair do like Nick’s
then it was just about time to get ready for the first dance – during this time I spotted one of the Engagement photos next to a well places sign.
Then it was time to grab a few first dance photos before it would be time for us to leave
Just before leaving we grabbed a shot of Claire’s mum and dad using the hotel as a backdrop
Then as we were leaving I grabbed one last photo of The Manor House Hotel – a really beautiful place to hold your wedding / wedding recpetion
On behalf of Nikki and myself can I just wish Claire and Nick all the best – as I finish typing this they are probably on a plane half way around the world getting close to their honeymoon destination.
Guys have a GREAT time, enjoy and bell me when you get back.
Thanks for choosing us to be a part of your big day,