Posts

,

A Small Last-Minute Lockdown Wedding

Every wedding is beautiful, no matter the style, setting or number of guests. But COVID has certainly made getting married harder. This doesn’t mean your wedding can’t be absolutely stunning and the perfect day you always imagined. In fact, Amy and Chris had their beautiful day….that was organised in just 4 days!

 

The Wedding of Amy and Chris

Amy and Chris were originally supposed to get married in April 2020, however this had to be postponed. They had no plans for when their wedding would be when it was postponed, but I’m sure as many people thought, that they assumed this would all blow over in a few months. Well, it gets to September and rather than the virus disappearing, it was coming back with a vengeance.

As restrictions were becoming tighter, it became clear to Amy and Chris that if they didn’t get married soon, it could be another few months or even longer before they could get married. So they took the plunge and decided to get married with 4 DAYS’ NOTICE as they could still do so with up to 30 people in attendance.

So they began replanning their small wedding on Wednesday 23rd September and on Sunday 27th September, they tied the knot!

 

Getting ready

Amy got ready at home and had a hairdresser to help out with the hair styling, but they decided they could all do their own makeup for the day. As you can see from the images, the girls had a blast getting ready and all gathered around mirrors in the conservatory.

 

Bride getting ready at home while hairdresser does her hair

 

The bridal party doing their own makeup at home

 

Wedding gown hanging from the staircase

 

Bridal party getting ready and doing their dresses up

 

I absolutely love the above photo of the bridesmaids having their dresses down up in a sort of train while Amy has final fixes done to her hair.

Luckily, as they were due to get married in April, Amy had already sorted details like her dress, so there was no panic shopping before the day!

Once everyone was dressed and ready to go, we had some time to get some fun shots outside. Amy was so chilled and, as you can see from the below photo, was having so much fun!

 

Bride and her mum laughing outside

 

The couple had managed to organise a vintage car for the day, and it picked up Amy and her entourage and whisked them off to the local church. The weather was perfect and meant that the car could have the roof down.

 

The bride in the back of the vintage car before getting married in Liverpool

 

St Stephen’s Parish Church, Hightown, Liverpool

The wedding was set at St Stephen’s Church, a small but beautiful building that was the perfect place to get married for Amy and Chris. Guests could space out within the church while all getting an excellent view of the ceremony (one of the perks of a small wedding). The couple wore masks to start with which they were allowed to take off during the ceremony.

 

Bride and her father walking down the aisle while wearing masks

 

Couple laughing at the alter while getting married

Husband and wife walking up the aisle after getting married

 

Bride and groom outside the church for a confetti shot

 

This couple were as happy as any other I’ve seen, despite the quick organising and the reduced numbers. I adore the confetti shot above which seems to light the couple up in the sunshine.

 

Bride and groom in the wedding car with some champagne

 

The Reception

Their reception was held next door at the village hall, the perfect setting for a small number of people.

 

Bride and groom laughing during the wedding speeches

 

The couple had some beautiful flower arrangements that just lit up the village hall. As you can see from the photo above, they’re surrounded by stunning bouquets. The speeches were hilarious and had Amy and Chris in stitches.

 

Couples outside the village hall

 

We did some beautiful, spaced-out couple photos as the sun was beginning to get lower.

The beauty of this location on the outskirts of Liverpool, near Formby, was its proximity to the beach. At sunset, we headed down there and the photographs came out absolutely beautiful! We couldn’t have planned such a beautiful photograph if we tried, and it shows that whether you plan a wedding in 4 days or 4 years, the day will be perfect.

 

Couple dancing on the beach at sunset on their wedding day

 

Simple buttercream wedding cake with real flowers

 

The cake was simple but beautiful, adorned with fresh flowers. Amy said that Amazon Prime was a lifesaver when planning a wedding in 4 days and that lots of her little extras came from here.

I hope this wedding day doesn’t put people off having a small wedding, and encourages you to do it anyway despite coronavirus. A virus cannot and will not destroy love and weddings will continue for years, centuries to come!

How to have a very small wedding

Unfortunately with COVID-19 restrictions looking to stay as they are for a long time, weddings are going to be small for the foreseeable future. But this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Small weddings can be intimate, personal and beautiful, a moment shared with your very closest family and selected friends. This is why I thought it would be a good time to write how to organise and host a very small wedding.

Weddings of less than 20 guests is typically called a microwedding, and these are the only kinds of weddings allowed to go ahead in the UK currently. But your microwedding doesn’t have to miss out on atmosphere or sparkle.

 

Choose a venue based on your numbers

It can be difficult to find a venue that will accept small numbers. This is generally because they don’t make as much money, if any, from weddings with very few guests. The more guests you have, the more you’re likely to spend on food and all the accompaniments, such as centrepieces.

But this means you can think outside of the box. An intimate outdoor wedding might be perfect or maybe you could hire an idyllic cottage. You may choose to have a small, private church wedding and go for a reception elsewhere afterwards. Many restaurants have the option of hiring out a small section, which might be ideal for you.

If you would prefer to have a larger venue, but they’re not allowing you to book because of your small numbers, you could suggest that you don’t have full venue exclusivity. This may mean that you’re sharing the venue with other guests or parties of people. If this doesn’t bother you too much, it could be a great compromise.

A destination wedding is ideal for such a small number of guests, so you could even consider going abroad. This may not be the easiest option at the moment, but definitely one to think about for the near future.

 

Go for casual, intimate dining

The fewer guests you have, the odder it feels to all sit on separate round tables where three courses are served in a formal setting. Instead, you may prefer to make things a bit more casual. Think good pub food, fresh pizza from a pizza oven or even a small hog roast that’s suited to less people. These things can be eaten both standing or sitting.

Alternatively, if you do want the more formal 3-course meal, you should have everyone sitting around one very large table. The table can be decorated in all sorts of ways (you don’t have to keep everything simple) but sharing a meal together in this way is a lovely idea.

 

Keep the smaller details

You may think that in having such a small wedding, you can do away with additions like photographers, videographers, flowers, a cake, etc. But these things are still so important. No matter whether you have 5 or 105 guests, it’s still your wedding day and a wedding photographer can still capture some beautiful images that you’ll be able to keep forever.

Cakes and flowers can still be part of your day, just in smaller amounts. No need to get a cake for 50 people, but you could choose little personalised cupcakes or even a very simple two tier. Don’t forget most wedding cake can be frozen and defrosted!

 

Wedding cake covered in white chocolate and strawberries

This one tier cake surrounded by cupcakes would be ideal for your small wedding

 

Don’t give up on your dreams

Most people look forward to the glamour of a big wedding (though it certainly isn’t for everyone). But just because your wedding is smaller than you imagined doesn’t mean you can’t have entertainment, a gorgeous venue, hair and makeup, a beautiful dress. You should keep these aspects of your wedding as close to what you would have wanted originally.

 

A small wedding definitely doesn’t mean that it’s any less of a celebration. Embrace your microwedding and see it for what it is – getting married with your very nearest and dearest alongside you.

,

A post-lockdown wedding at Alderford Lake, Shropshire

It’s been a hard struggle for the wedding industry over the last few months, particularly with the announcement earlier this week that weddings will now be reduced from 30 guests to just 15. However, I had the pleasure of shooting Damian and Rosamund’s wedding back in August before Coronavirus restrictions tightened, meaning their beautiful wedding for 30 guests was able to go ahead at Alderford Lake in Whitchurch, Shropshire. It was my first post-lockdown wedding and I couldn’t have chosen a better one to shoot.

 

About Alderford Lake

Alderford Lake is a stunning scenic area in Shropshire, near Whitchurch, with around 47 acres of land where you can swim, canoe, kayak and more. Set beside the lake is a marquee that can be hired out for weddings and more! Damian and Ros chose this beautiful setting to hold their small and personal wedding reception.

 

The wedding of Damian and Ros

Ros chose to get ready at her beautiful home which meant I got some really lovely shots of her with their pet cat, Phoebe. This isn’t something that happens often but pets are certainly as much a part of the family as anyone else!

 

The bride on her wedding day sitting with the cat

Bride having her make up down by a makeup artist wearing a mask

 

Bride's wedding dress hanging from a doorframe

 

Her dress hung from a doorframe next to the family chalkboard. On the board, Damian had written:

24 years ago I walked to school with you. Today we walk down the aisle!

The remainder of the board was covered in drawings from the children, hearts with arrows going through them and family messages. It was such a lovely touch, I couldn’t not get a photo of the board and the dress together.

 

Bride reflected in a large window mirror while having her make up done

 

The theme was quite autumnal, one of the main colours being a deep, maroon red. I love this photo of her doing her son’s tie for him.

 

Bride doing up her son's cravat on the wedding day

 

Once ready, the ceremony itself was held at St Peter and St Paul’s Church in Wem, Shropshire. The church was absolutely beautiful and I managed to capture some shots from above, which is quite rare for a church wedding. Not only does this angle highlight the bride and groom but also that beautiful parquet floor!

 

Bride and groom from above getting married in a Shropshire church

 

Bride and groom in the church with guests wearing masks behind them

 

During the ceremony, the guests wore masks when inside the church while also seated in their individual households so they were sticking to social distancing guidelines. The wedding, though small, felt completely safe and they even maintained a certain distance from the vicar.

 

Gorgeous stained glass window in the church with the bride and groom in front of it

 

Flower girls peeking out from behind the large church door

Bride and groom in the doorway of the church

Bride and groom kissing while her veil blows in the wind

Groom holding up face masks reading Just Married

 

They fully embraced the masks, which I suppose is the only thing you can do, and even got some that read ‘Just Married’ on.

After the official bit, the couple and their guests moved on to the marquee at Alderford Lake. The marquee was beautifully lit and dressed with tulle chair covers, white tablecloths and huge floral centrepieces made from green foliage and pink flowers. Even the bottles of wine on the table had a pink label to match.

 

Marquee with gorgeous wedding dressing and large flower centrepiece

Wedding cake covered in white chocolate and strawberries

 

The wedding cake was a drip cake, topped with chocolate-covered strawberries and a cake topper that reads ‘Mr and Mrs Whitehurst’. Surrounding the cake were lots of little cupcakes, also covered in strawberries. The effect was simple but so beautiful.

The couple didn’t have the best weather and the evening was filled with rain, but that didn’t stop us from getting some stunning outdoor wedding photographs. As a wedding photographer, I can generally shoot for every eventuality, including rain!

 

Bride and groom for Shropshire wedding under an umbrella

 

Bride and groom outside on their wedding day

Bride and groom by the lake at Alderford

 

So if it rains on your wedding day – don’t panic. The images will still be spectacular.

They then danced the night away on the dancefloor in the marquee, complete with a ‘Crazy in Love’ lit up sign behind them

 

Bride and groom during their first dance with a 'Crazy in Love' sign in the background

 

Damian and Ros definitely didn’t let Coronavirus get in the way of their wedding. Despite the reduced numbers, the day was absolutely beautiful.

 

Bride and groom wearing Just Married face masks