Wedding at the Gherkin London

The Gherkin, London
Laura & David

Weddings at the Gherkin, London

I love London weddings. Logistics can sometimes be a headache but from a creative standpoint (and once you’re there) you can find things, shapes, colours and perspectives which you can’t anywhere else and the contrast between country weddings is huge and something I love to embrace.

This is Laura and David’s wedding at The Gherkin. This was a top o’ the skyscraper gig with the view of London all around us on a crystal clear September day.

I started with a brief visit to Laura and her family at the Ned by way of Threadneedle Street before heading to see David and the groomsmen at the Slug and Lettuce opposing 30 St Mary Axe / The Gherkin.

Gherkin London Ceremony area

This was my first time at the Gherkin and I was taken by the sheer scale of the tower up close; I loved all the clean lines and glass. It allowed me to see in a different way while shooting.

We were at the very top of the tower and you need to switch lifts near the top to do the final leg up. Once there, you’ll find two levels accessible by stairs. The very top being for the ceremony and dancing with the lower level acting as the dining room.

Searcy's at the Gherkin

After the ceremony we headed down and out for photos and we really didn’t need to go very far at all as there was the imposition of The Gherkin, the neutral greys of the granite beside and enough space for a lovely falloff in to the background.

Dinner was the high standard that’s known from Searcy’s and this lead to some speeches, sunset photos and the evening do.

Some weddings lift your spirits in such a way as to be uniquely memorable and this was one of them. Both on an emotional level as well as the physical, being almost 200 metres up.

Laura and David were a dream to be around, always high spirited and just 100% genuinely lovely. Special thanks goes to Laura’s mum for the G n’ T at 8pm and for the chap who bought me a Guinness early on that made me feel so included. Small gestures of kindness are never forgotten, thank you, wherever you are 😀

The Old Sorting Office, London
Jess & Ali

If you cast your mind back to last Summer you’ll remember it was uh, a bit of a washout. I’m in my tenth year as a wedding photographer and up until Jess and Ali’s wedding I’d only had 1 rainy wedding!

Last summer I think I had about 7 rain filled weddings across July and August but if you’re worried about rain on your big day, Jess & Ali’s one is a shining example of why you shouldn’t let it play on your mind.

Everything took place in an around the Barnes area of London. With Jess and Ali being about 5 minutes away from each other I was able to bounce between them both before the ceremony which took place at St Mary’s Church.

We were doing ok up until the end of the ceremony when the heavens really did open but it didn’t dent anyone’s spirits. It’s not often you get a confetti throw involving brollies and it’s not often you follow an old orleans brass band 300 metres to the reception venue…in the pouring rain!

But here’s the thing. You can’t do anything about the weather and depending on who you are and what your outlook on life is you can fight it and lose or accept it’s a part of your day. Which is what everyone did.

In some ways it was the glue that helped hold things together. We were all sharing the experience and enjoying it. Jess and Ali’s reception venue was the Old Sorting Office (OSO Arts Centre). A social space with a large main room and side reception right in the middle of Barnes Green.

They had gazebo’s outside where there was ample room to shelter from the rain and because of the trees, we were able to do all the family stuff and couple shots without getting rained on (too much).

In the evening the rain did a major pullback and we were able to venture out for some more pictures and the rest of the evening kicked off spectacularly with their friends Tom and Ruben hitting the decks.

I stayed right until the end for this one, pretty much everyone was smashed, Jess threw her bouquet at the end of their exit line and I made my way home for some much needed zzzz’s after 🙂

Wild Garden, The Hyde Estate, Sussex
Isolde & Alex

At the beginning of July this year I was catapulted into Izzy and Alex’s world. They were married at Worth Abbey in Sussex before heading to the Wild Park on the Hyde Estate in Handcross.

I was welcomed at the family home with everyone busy in one way or another before leaving for Worth Abbey.

If you’ve never been to the Abbey before it’s a huge cylindrical space, a bit sci-fi in its design and as such, swallows you up nicely. We had the ceremony, readings and a group photo of everyone outside before heading to the Hyde Estate.

It’s rare that I’ve seen a venue quite like this. Their four hatted tipi sat nicely on the riverbank, shrouded by tall trees making us feel cosy and in one place. But beyond this space there were many others, we went over the bridge to the garden for photos, there was woodland within easy reach for later and even for the family stuff we had the backdrop of the river within a few feet of the tipi.

One of the most standout things which made today so special was the genuinely sweet people there. The happiness of today was a beautiful thing and Issy and Alex were so funny it was infectious (without the rash).

Carefree ruled the day, we lost the bottom of the wedding dress due to a misplaced foot while on the swing and it was laughed off, the dress suffered a red wine incident, meh, who cares – and so on. It was a day when everyone was out to enjoy themselves and nothing was going to get in their way.

In the evening the floor went crazy, we caught the twilight for some extra photos and after 11 we had a silent disco until the early hours.

COuples engagement shoot in the Cotswolds

Two days in the Cotswolds
Ye Vonn & Nicholas

Cotswold Couple Shoot

Normally when I’m asked for a couples shoot they last 1-2 hours but with Ye Vonn and Nicholas their shoot was a 10 hours across two days sort of affair.

They are from and are getting married in Malaysia but beforedoing so they wanted to have some photos in the UK, namely in the cotswold area.

We started off the day before at Buckland Manor, Broadway where we made the most of the grounds and beautiful sunset. The next day we headed off to Cotswold Lavender where you can get permission to shoot amongst the gorgeous Lavender fields. We were lucky in that a week later it was going to be harvested.

We also stopped by some of the local landmarks at every opportunity and grabbed photos there as well before ending off in a village nearby to capture the spirit of the buildings.

This was a massive shoot compared to those I normally do, with make up and costume changes. There was so many photos at the end of it.

Here are a selection of my favourites from the day:

Cotswold Couple Shoot

Asia House Wedding Photography

Asia House & The Amadeus Centre
Clare & Sanj

Clare & Sanj at Asia House and The Amadeus
Ha, where do I begin with this one. Ok details. So here is Clare and Sanj’s wedding which took place at Asia House with their reception at the Amadeus Centre in London.

So those are the main details but here’s the real stuff. One of Clare and Sanj’s main requests from me was that they had a nice photo of each other as anything they had was taken years ago and we got plenty of them because of who they were and how much they gave me so much to shoot.

Good wedding photos are not just because of the photographer but the sum of the wedding itself. The couple, the guests, their personalities, the venue and so on.

I like to say to couples that the reality is I’m only 50% of the resulting photos. What goes on during the day, where people are emotionally, how much time I have to do everything and how I fit in with the crowd is paramount to what they’ll get at the end of the day.

Clare & Sanj at Asia House and The AmadeusEssentially I hold a mirror up to a wedding and go ‘This is what it looked like’ – I can’t tell fibs and make a wedding something it’s not. I’m fortunate in that the right couples book me and I’m given a huge amount of awesome each time.

At Clare and Sanj’s wedding it was clear I was welcomed and I had a lot of fun during prep as well as donning my seamstress hat to fix a small tear in Clare’s dress before heading off with them to Asia House where Sanj was waiting with his family greeting the guests on arrival.

I could tell Sanj was excited, as all great guys would be and because of the London traffic we had made sure we were there early. This meant there was a bit of a wait. It doesn’t help knowing the person you’re about to spend the rest of your life with is waiting downstairs!

Clare & Sanj at Asia House and The AmadeusThe ceremony went ahead, they kissed and we left for The Amadeus Centre where on arrival we took a 5 minute walk to Elnathan Mews which is one of those typically cute London back streets and had some photos there.

Tipi Wedding Photography in London

Shiplake Church and a Four Hat Tipi Wedding
Keli & Mark

Tipi Wedding PhotographyA massive party. That’s how I would sum up Keli and Marks tipi wedding.

They had a gorgeous four hat tipi which was only a couple of minutes away from Shiplake church ( in Henley on Thames ). There were two of us covering their wedding, I was covering Keli’s side and Greg the photographic Ninja was covering Mark’s.

We both had a lot of space to shoot in and there was lots of cool stuff surrounding us. The best wedding car I’ve yet to see, a classic american Thunderbird, blew my mind and as the prep was next to the Tipi it gave me the chance to look inside and imagine the awesomeness that was going to take place later on.

Tipi Wedding Photography

I headed off to the church where Greg was waiting for me and I waited for Keli to arrive. After the ceremony Greg rode shotgun back to the reception with the other guests on a trailer pulled by a tractor!

While this was happening we made a brief detour to the waterside where Mark originally proposed and had some photo time there. We didn’t stay too long, enough to get the photos we needed and not too long their guests would miss them.
Tipi Wedding Photography

From this point the party started, the formalities were over and we could all relax, (other than the speeches but they were handled with ease)!

A Tipi wedding is typically a relaxed and more informal one and dinner was a carvery per table, each with it’s own nominated head carver and as the night drew in their band ‘Tetris’ kept things going until past midnight when we also finished too.

Hexton Manor Wedding Photography

Hexton Manor
Kelly & Dan

Hexton Manor Wedding

Here we go, Kelly and Dan’s wedding at Hexton Manor.

Now you guys won’t know this so I’ll let you know now. Before every keystroke I’m in a constant battle between what I’d like to say to you, the reader and what I’d really like to say about my experience on the day. At some point there’s a battle of words in the air and something gets written down in front of me.

But personally, I loved these two. Dan, aka ‘Dj Dan Van Damage’ and Kelly are two people that if I could, I’d keep them in miniature and carry them around with me at all times.

They just love each other, completely and utterly and our friendship started off a few weeks prior during their pre wedding shoot. We just hit it off right away, they were completely open and I always knew where I was with them. Love them to bits.

Hexton Manor Wedding

Lots of things happened today, Kelly got ready at the Live and Let Die pub in Pegsdon (Nice place, recommended) and then we headed off just down the road to Hexton Manor.

Hexton Manor is a lovely country house, it’s secluded and quite kooky inside. Kelly had hoped that they could have their ceremony outside but at the very last minute it started to rain and we moved inside which was just as nice.

We still got to take photos inside and out even in the rain. Hexton Manor lends itself to being an all weather venue and they have an 8ft stuffed bear you can use too. In fact screw it, it’s a great venue for photos because you can go pretty much anywhere on the first floor to do so. I’ve shot in some country houses and you can’t always go everywhere so it’s a big plus.

Hexton Manor Wedding

Their main reception was in the marquee across from the manor and we continued the rest of the day there until close. Some of Darren’s friends were heavily into cars so we were graced with a Lambo which was a nice touch.

House Meadow Wedding Photography

The House Meadow
Charlotte & Sebastian

House Meadow Wedding

It just doesn’t want to stop raining does it? (Happy new year by the way), it’s total freakish weather right now and it all feels a bit angry out there.

So, let’s glance back at July when it was much nicer and we can drift into Charlotte and Sebastian’s wedding at The House Meadow in Biddenden.

Their wedding was a totally relaxed one with horseshoe throwing, a Coconut shy, swingball (YES!) and various other distractions for everyone to take part in.

House Meadow Wedding

I started the day at theirs with everyone getting ready and then headed off to the House Meadow there Sebastian was waiting. Once arrived the girls walked from the Horseshoe Barn past the meadow and up to the Gazebo where the ceremony took place.

I loved the seating arrangement here for some reason (see pics) maybe because it was different to most weddings or that it filled the frame well for photos but after the ceremony we walked over to the trees by the lake for popcorn and Pimms.
House Meadow Wedding

With dinner in the main barn Charlotte’s fondness of Tea showed in the vintage crockery and I did my best to make sure Sebastian’s love of Lego featured somewhere too.

Dinner was a lot like an open picnic on each table where everyone helped themselves and it was just, well, lovely really. You felt cosy, comfortable and welcome here.

Wiltons Music Hall Wedding Photography

Wiltons Music Hall
Laila & Chris

Wiltons Music Hall Wedding

I love weddings that are off the beaten track and challenging. When I get them I tend to run off the adrenaline and let go of the reigns to see where the day takes me. Laila and Chris’s wedding at Wilton’s Music hall was the perfect example of this.
Wiltons Music Hall Wedding
So colourful was this day and so spoilt for choice with details was I that I never ran out of things to shoot. From the bubble machine welcoming you, the Pinata that was used for receiving cards from the guests, the Pink Flamingo’s, the face masks on the tables, the US sweets on the candy bar that were there one minute and gone the next to the eclectic collection of balloons at the end of the aisle… this was no ordinary wedding.

Wiltons Music Hall Wedding

Because we were in central London a lot of the more formal photos were taken indoors yet this wasn’t a bad thing and the resulting photos lent themselves really well to the urban feel of Wiltons Music Hall.

The wedding at Wiltons finished at around 7pm but the celebrations continued until late a short walk down the road at Simmons Bar on Royal Mint Street. The party was still going when I left!

Somerset Wedding Photography

A Stunning West Country Wedding at Standerwick Court
Sophie & Lewis

Country House Wedding Somerset

As each year goes by I’m still surprised by just how much I can achieve in one wedding day. At Sophie and Lewis’ wedding we were spoilt for choice as far as locations go with Standerwick Court being his parents home.

So that’s 10 bedrooms and 70+ acres with exclusive use to be creative in. One room had a Spitfire battle painted on all four walls….Painted on the walls. How cool is that?

Beckington church, where Lewis waited for Sophie to arrive was typically west country cute as well.

Country House Wedding Somerset

After the emotional ceremony they headed back to Standerwick Court in Lewis’ surprise transport of a horse and carriage, we stopped for photos, I was stung by nettles and my second Greg was with the rest of the guests being awesome.

A sweet marquee housed the reception dinner and after the final speech we partied hard until late with a few stops for shots at the folly and later, the outhouses where the moon popped out to greet us.
Country House Wedding Somerset

There was so much to say about their wedding that it would take away from the photos so I’ll stop, but leave you with this….

A great location and venue is brilliant but the right couple, friends and family are what made this wedding. These guys were out to party and they all did in their own way.