Heather and Shaun were the first of their group of friends to get married. Heather says she felt a little under pressure to create an amazing day… but this was an absolutely incredible day for me to work at. It must have been even more amazing to attend as a guest!
They wanted their wedding to be a real experience for everyone, especially as lots of their guests were travelling from as far as Australia. Nearly everything was home-made, personal or both. Friends and family members contributed towards everything, from Heather’s dress to the decorations, from the food to the wedding cake. Also, most of the guests stayed for the entire bank holiday weekend. This created a wonderfully relaxed atmosphere, where people who had never met got on like they had been friends for years. Everyone felt a part of it because so many helped set up the venue the day before and baked desserts for the day itself.
The whole day had a collaborative, feel-good factor that was a result of the effort and fantastic touches from so many people. Heather and Shaun were at the centre of it all, and they were such a wonderful, loving and fun couple to photograph. East Soar was the perfect rustic venue for this hand-made, DIY wedding. It looked beautiful decorated by everyone’s individual efforts and provided the perfect setting for this amazing wedding bathed in the Devon summer sun.
Heather had two pairs of wedding shoes. The first were a white satin pair from House of Fraser and her second comfy pair were from Toms.
Heather and Shaun chose the fantastic East Soar Outdoor Experience as their venue. It was not only a beautiful secluded, rustic venue. It also allowed their guests to all stay on site in bell tents for the whole bank holiday weekend. East Soar use the money they make from weddings to fund local schools, school trips and educational days.
Heather’s mum Mary made all the flowers, bouquets and decorations from her own homegrown ones. They then filled out some of the bouquets and arrangements with flowers from Wildflower Devon. Mary and Heather’s Auntie Joyce had been drying flowers for the confetti ever since Heather and Shaun were engaged in July 2017, which was a lovely touch.
Heather’s mum, Mary, made her stunning wedding dress. She got the lace from Bridal Fabrics and the crepe fabric from Butterfly Fabric Cardiff. Heather says that she wanted a specific style of dress, so her mum had to work out her own dress pattern. She also hand-beaded the top and the end result was absolutely beautiful!
Heather had a clear vision of how she wanted their pageboys to look. She asked that they both wore shorts but the elder cousin didn’t want to look “like a little kid” – and so wore trousers instead! There was a certain symmetry here though. Heather told me that when she was 5, she refused to wear a dress at her aunt’s wedding and insisted on wearing a pageboy outfit to match her brother! InspiredByEvaStore made the handmade badges for the pageboys.
Heather gave her bridesmaids the colours that she wanted for their dresses, but the actual choices were all theirs! They used Monsoon, Asos, Topshop and the dark blue dress was even hand-made in South Africa! Heather says that she knew that one dress would not necessarily suit all of her bridesmaids. She was definitely rewarded for her bravery in allowing them to pick; they all looked fabulous!
Heather made all of the origami stars on the tables, as well as the numerous cranes, in the lead up to the wedding. Such a creative family!
Heather and Shaun’s friend Amy runs Slice of Yorkshire and transported their cake from Leeds. You wouldn’t know that it was her first ever wedding cake!
PeachyPrintsUK made the personalised table names. They were named after places Shaun and Heather had visited on their travels.
I couldn’t write this blog post without pointing out how amazing Heather’s mum is! Mary not only made Heather’s wedding dress (!) She also made the floral decorations, bunting and prepared loads of the food. Yet the day as a whole was a collaborative effort, with huge contributions from Heather and Shaun’s aunts and friends.
Thank you Heather and Shaun for having me as your photographer for your amazing wedding, I absolutely loved it!
Ashleigh and Stephen said that they wanted their wedding to be informal and relaxed, and I certainly had a wonderfully enjoyable day photographing it. They travelled down to Devon for their wedding along with their family and friends. It was as though everyone was all the more grateful for their time away together and the atmosphere was absolutely amazing! All of the joy and hilarity took place in the wonderful setting of one of my favourite Devon wedding venues; Rockbeare Manor on the outskirts of Exeter.
Rockbeare Manor is amazing. The rooms are beautiful, the staff are always brilliant and its neutral interiors are perfect for couples to make it their own. Ashleigh and Stephen had a gold and coral colour scheme, giving it a bright and summery feel, which suited their relaxed and fun-loving personalities.
The sun sets just in front of the manor house and I was able to take lovely photos of the happy couple during golden hour. There was also a spot of cricket in the grounds in the evening; the perfect activity for a superb summer’s day and a wonderfully relaxed and beautiful wedding.
Ashleigh’s stunning wedding dress was by Pronovias.
Ashleigh’s natural make up was by Eve Ashby.
I loved Ashleigh’s down do with a boho braid. It was perfectly styled by Lise Bridal Hair.
All of the flowers were provided by Debbie Morris at Dartmoor Flowers. The peach coloured flowers popped against the green foliage and provided a contemporary summer feel to this July wedding.
Ashleigh and Stephen’s incredible cake was made by Ashleigh’s friend Rosie. It featured a cute cork couple, a model of their beloved cockapoo Mango and a cricket ball lodged into the side! An awesome touch, especially when cricket was played later on in the day!
Stephen loves Oasis, so the table names were old vinyl records with Oasis songs upon them, each chosen to reflect the people sat at the table. The bridesmaids were on the “She’s Electric” table, whilst university friends, recalling old times, sat at “Cigarettes and Alcohol”. The top table was “Champagne Supernova”.
The bridesmaids’ coral multi-way dresses were Debut at Debenhams.
Hahaha! What an amazing day; thank you so much Ashleigh and Stephen for choosing me to photograph it!
It doesn’t matter how busy I am with weddings in June, I refuse to skip elderflower season! I have tried my hand at elderflower delight – but the best thing I have done with these cute little flowers is to make what is now a mandatory yearly tradition; elderflower champagne!
This brew is one of my favourites and is such a great summer drink. I have not seen it at a wedding yet but you can make large quantities of this and could be the ideal drink to keep guests happy! At the time of writing the flowers have long since vanished, to be replaced by another useful crop, the elderberry. However, if I can inspire some people to make this for 2019, then it will have been very worthwhile.
It all begins foraging fully bloomed elderflowers heads…
… then the elderflowers are removed with the tines of a fork…
… and a lot of sugar is added! I was shocked when I started home-brewing at how much sugar goes into even a dry wine. This is mostly converted to alcohol by the yeast in the brewing process and the remainder gives the brew its sweetness.
Lemon zest and juice adds flavour and acidity…
… and we use a hydrometer to make sure the amount of sugar is correct. Once it’s fermenting away, we check to see when it is almost finished before we bottle it…
… and the fermentation continues in the bottle to give the champagne its necessary fizz!
Here’s to all my lovely couples who have got married this summer! Thank you for having me as your photographer and for making this year, and especially this summer, so amazing.
This year I have been fortunate enough to photograph lots of weddings at venues I haven’t worked at before, and I was very excited to be shooting Hannah and James’s reception at Greenway in Devon. I am also a huge Agatha Christie fan, so Greenway was definitely on my “bucket list”! I had already met Hannah and James previously and knew that theirs would be an amazing wedding to photograph.
They thought it was important to be married at church, so the ceremony took place at the beautiful Our Lady Help of Christians and St. Denis Catholic Church in Torquay. Yet Hannah and James wanted to mix the traditional with something different. Their mutual love of the 1920s, combined with the Agatha Christie setting, produced an amazing art-deco effect for their reception. They gave it all a colourful, modern twist with the flowers and bridesmaid dresses, and everything worked so well together. Enjoy!
Hannah’s dress, shoes, bridal headpiece and the bridesmaids’ dresses were all from Pirouette in Exeter.
Hannah’s makeup was by Browella in Torquay.
The sleeves on Hannah’s bridal dress were designed bespoke by Sarah Goodies at Pirouette with a 1920s twist, and each sleeve was hand-beaded for the perfect art-deco look.
Everything at Hannah and James’s wedding worked so well together and the flowers and the bouquets, provided by Fiesta Red, were absolutely stunning!
The cake was provided by Torquay bakery A Piece of Cake.
I hope my photos show off the fact that Hannah’s brother could just dance!
Thank you Hannah and James for letting me photograph your amazing day and the beginning of your married life together!
This was my first wedding at Lupton House and it was an absolute joy; beautiful, elegant and featuring a wonderful couple in Rosa and Oliver. Rosa grew up in Brixham and misses the sea now that she lives in London, so it was amazing for her to get ready at Maypool Cottage, which couldn’t be closer to the sea! Lupton House was perfect for these nature lovers, with its beautiful Italian gardens, and they styled it perfectly with flowers and ivy. In the latter half of the day, Rosa donned a stunning flower crown and the speeches took place outside on the lawn. It really was the perfect venue and couple for a glorious spring wedding!
Rosa’s makeup was by Millie at Bliss Hair and Beauty.
Rosa’s elegant shoes were by Rainbow.
Rosa’s exquisite dress was by Jesus Peiro. I absolutely love it!
The gents’ suits were by Oliver Brown of Chelsea.
Everything at Rosa and Oliver’s wedding worked so well together! This stunning cake was by Lisa Sallis of Boho Cakes.
Rosa’s bouquet by Les Fleurs was so beautiful. I thought that the hanging ivy looked so good with Lupton House as the setting!
I think I might be too nervous to give a speech myself, so it was amazing that Rosa’s nephew did! The speeches were excellent and it was great that they were outside on a lovely May evening.
The sparklers and props helped to create some amazing scenes late in the day! Thank you so much to Rosa and Oliver for letting me photograph your wonderful wedding; it was such a joy!
One of my favourite parts of a wedding is when the newlyweds, having finished their first dance, beckon their friends and family onto the dance floor to join them for anything from a friendly disco to an all-out rave! The dance floor holds so many possibilities; brides letting loose, amazing lighting effects – as well as brilliant expressions and dance moves! As a documentary wedding photographer, I love being able to provide photos of fantastic and spontaneous moments that I hope my couples will always look back on with a smile.
A particular highlight of the dance floor is the bride letting her hair down. There’s certainly nothing “blushing” about these brides!
The main thing I like about the dance floor is that involves people laughing and moving spontaneously and naturally. They’re usually too busy experiencing joy with their friends and family to think about the photographer capturing them at their most fun – and this really does make for the best photos! I always tell my couples that their favourite shots will probably be those when they’re not posing for portraits but simply enjoying spending time with their friends and family. Hopefully this post will illustrate the best of natural, fun documentary photography!
One of the other brilliant aspects of the dance floor are the lights. Different lights provide different effects, including sharp lines, hazy glows and dashed lines that look sparkly, all of which I can use to create colourful lines framing the subject.
Thank you for taking the time to read my blog! Please feel free to leave a comment below. If you are planning on a potentially amazing dance floor and you’re looking for a documentary wedding photographer in Devon or Cornwall, then please feel free to check out my portfolio, my packages or get in touch!
I was so excited to be photographing Emily and Ray’s wedding; they told me that they were planning a rustic, fun and relaxed day and the venue, Westcott Barton in Devon, looked stunning. It turned out to be every bit as good as I hoped.
Firstly, the weather was fantastic and showed the superb gardens of Westcott Barton at their best. Secondly, Emily and Ray’s idea for their wedding worked so well with the venue. It had a laid-back, rustic feel all of its own and looked amazing with Catkin Bloom‘s complementary flowers and friends and family’s home-made decorations.The sign, bunting, table-runners and cake were all made by talented aunts and mums, and they looked fantastic. Blue Fizz Events helped plan, organise and coordinate the day, allowing Emily to relax and enjoy it! It was so laid back and enjoyable; they really did an amazing job.
All of this added up to a wedding that looked and felt absolutely incredible!
Emily’s make-up was by Isabelle Grace Makeup Artistry.
Emily’s dress was from Champagne and Charlotte Bridal Boutique. Unlike many brides, Emily loved all of the dresses! However, she instantly fell in love with her amazing Stephanie Alinn dress and she looked incredible in it. Emily’s beautiful hair was styled by Megan from Bob’s Hairstylist.
The gents’ suits were provided by Suits Direct.
Emily and Ray’s wedding sign was made by Ray’s aunty Vicky. It’s now a permanent fixture in their garden!
Emily and Ray’s cake was made by Emily’s aunty Becky and the decorations were all provided by friends, family and Emily herself. The home-made items were so good and fitted the rustic feel of Westcott Barton perfectly. The butterfly on the cake symbolised Emily’s grandfather, who sadly passed away shortly after she became engaged to Ray.
Emily wanted meadow flowers to complement her rustic wedding and provided Cath from Catkin Blooms with the pink, blue and green colours that she wanted. The resulting bouquets, centre-pieces and milk-churn arrangements looked fantastic and fulfilled Emily’s wishes perfectly!
Emily had seven bridesmaids so opted for a multiway dress from Debenham’s to suit them all. They all looked amazing!
Emily told me that Rachael from Rhubarb and Cream Catering was brilliant and was to thank for the wonderful and delicious food!
All of the guests had a blast with The Remarkable Photobooth!
DJ and lighting were provided by Flybase Discotheque. They kept the dance-floor packed, which provided me with some great photo opportunities!
I really do have the best job in the world! Thank you Emily and Ray for letting me photograph your amazing wedding and my first in North Devon!
Thank you for reading my blog! Please feel free to leave a comment below. And if you are looking for a wedding photographer in Devon or Cornwall, then please feel free to check out my packages or get in touch!
I first met Caroline and Dale at Em and Joe‘s wedding, which I photographed in 2015. I remembered them as a lovely, fun couple (especially on the dance-floor) so I was absolutely thrilled when I was given the opportunity to photograph their wedding.
It proved to be very true to them; great fun, with their friends and family central to the day. It began at their home with Caroline’s immediate family, bridesmaids and close friends, before driving to All Saints Church, Torquay, for a beautiful church service. Then we all moved to Bickley Mill in Devon for the reception. Anyone who has read my blog before may know that I love Bickley Mill, and its neutral interior really allows couples to make it their own. Caroline and Dale decorated it with amazing autumnal flowers and decorations that meant something to them, so it was not only beautiful but it was personal to them, too.
As a documentary photographer, I aim to capture emotions as well as people. It makes my job all the more enjoyable when I attend weddings where everyone is so natural and close with one another. Caroline and Dale said that they are not showy people but I think that this makes for the best photography. Their love for one another, their family and their friends was evident in so many natural moments (and I could not possibly fit them all in this post) that I would not have had them be more “showy” for the world!
Caroline’s make-up was by Polished, a recommendation from her cousin. The effect was stunning but natural; people commented on the day that she looked like the best version of herself; I’d have to agree!
Vita from Flower La Vita was the first person to make Caroline cry when she arrived with the flowers!
Caroline’s wedding dress was from The Bridal Box in Torquay. She tried one dress (hated it) tried a second and loved it! Her mum burst into tears when she saw her, so she knew that this had to be the one. The Bridesmaids’ dresses were from Janes in Torquay.
Vicki from Vanity Fayre has been Caroline’s hairdresser since she was six. Even before their engagement, she started asking Caroline about what hair she would like on her wedding day!
Flower La Vita provided Caroline’s stunning bouquet, as well as the centrepieces and buttonholes. The inspiration came from Dale’s autumn proposal to Caroline in Cockington, which must have looked beautiful! Caroline’s favourite colour is orange as well, so the result was a gorgeously warm autumnal arrangement. Caroline told me that Vita of Flower la Vita was exceptionally accommodating in creating her perfect bouquet.
The rustic place holders and table numbers were made by Dale from an old Christmas tree.
The wedding favours, traditional sugared almonds from Gibraltar, were courtesy of Favours for You.
Dale’s mum made their wonderful cake. The warm colours of the fruits went perfectly with the autumnal colour scheme.
The DJ was from Bespoke Disco, who played “It Must be Love” by Madness for Caroline and Dale’s first dance. And there was further “madness” on the dance-floor shortly afterwards!
There was some really great dancing at this one! Thank you Caroline and Dale for allowing me to share in your fantastic wedding; it really was a pleasure!
Thank you for reading my blog! If you would like to leave a comment, please feel free to do so below. And if you are looking for a wedding photographer in Devon or Cornwall, please feel free to check out my packages or get in touch!
Jazmine and Harley have been together for 12 years and their beautiful spring wedding at Buckland-Tout-Saints demonstrated their long-felt love for one another. Their relaxed, natural and family-orientated wedding was simply so easy to enjoy and admire. The grounds at the Buckland-Tout-Saints Hotel were magnificent and the beautiful interior was simply styled with Angela’s Wedding Flowers. Guests choosing beef from the menu were treated to meat from Jazmine’s father’s dexter cows. There was a one-man-band for entertainment, a sweet stall for the children and, later on, my very first sparkler exit!
This was Jazmine and Harley’s celebration of the best things in their life; their love for their friends and family, their son George and each other.
This lovely naked cake was provided by the ever-brilliant Konradi Cakes.
The suits were from Jonathan Hawkes in Exeter.
This very cute flower girl dress was from Monsoon.
Jazmine’s hair was styled by one of my lovely former brides, Carmen Hawkins of Airheadz Hair and Beauty!
The fantastic table-plan, place names and wedding invitations were provided by Nessa Noelle.
The wedding favours were Lindt bunnies. Harley proposed to Jazmine following an Easter egg hunt the year before, so it was a fitting (and delicious) touch!
All of the flowers, including Jazmine’s beautiful bouquet, were provided by Angela’s Wedding Flowers. Jazmine and Harley said that Buckland-Tout-Saints did not need much in the way of additional decoration, allowing Angela’s arrangements to steal the show!