Basketball Wedding at Sir Alfred Hitchcock Hotel London

An amazing wedding day with Scottish, Filipino and basketball influences

The groom wore tartan; the bride wore trainers. This was no ordinary wedding. From the start, Christine and Tarryn knew they wanted an amazing wedding day but due to personal circumstances they had just three weeks to plan – just like in our favourite wedding TV programme Don’t Tell the Bride. Christine tells her amazing wedding day tale below.

"I’m an art teacher and Tarryn was my art muse. He planned a surprise trip to Italy for my birthday and popped the question at Gianicolo, one of the highest points in Rome. He found a beautiful secluded spot (a field of daisies) at the top of a hill and got down on one knee. It was all very romantic. We were engaged for just over eight months before getting married, but chose our date on Christmas Eve and got married just three weeks later, which made it pretty special."

Originally from Hull, with a Scottish mother, Tarryn is one of the UK’s most well known streetballers and regularly gets booked to perform tricks at events. He’s also played professionally when younger, has featured in TV ads and music videos and still plays recreationally and coaches some of London’s top youngsters in the game. He’s in many a You Tube video, and also had a key role in a British basketball movie – Freestyle. A large number of basketball players attended both the wedding and evening reception.

"My dress was the first thing I ticked off my wedding list. My sister and I went to just one dress shop where I tried on about eight different styles of dresses. I couldn’t decide between two of them so decided to sleep on it. My Mum convinced me to visit other dress shops before committing to one of the two dresses but after looking around I had already decided what dress I had fallen in love with without having to try on any other dress. I went back to the shop, tried it on again and was 100% positive it was ‘The Dress’. I remember saying “I want a dress that will make Tarryn cry when he sees me walking down the aisle and this is it!” I was right! It was an Anna Solerno dress from WED2B. I matched my earrings and hairclip to the rhinestone detail that featured on the dress."

"Our wedding day was a bright and sunny January day, which instantly set the mood. Getting ready was quite calm and relaxing until about half an hour before we were due to leave. It helped having a lot of hands on deck to make sure everything was good to go. We kept the bridal party as family members: my sister was Matron of Honour, while her one-year-old daughter was bridesmaid and my niece and Tarryn’s niece were flower girls, and my cousin’s son was our ring bearer." 

"We wanted to include elements from both our cultures. Tarryn is Scottish and wore a traditional kilt outfit from Kilts4All." 

"My background is mixed Irish and Filipina, and so I walked down the aisle to an Irish version of the classic Canon in D and during our ceremony we included traditional Filipino wedding customs which symbolised prosperity, unity of both families, the couple becoming one, and everlasting love and commitment." 

"Something we weren’t expecting was our vintage wedding car, a 1950s Bentley, to sound and feel like it was going to fall apart en route to our destinations! It was quite funny; definitely an experience to remember." 

"The venue, the Sir Alfred Hitchcock Hotel, is local to us and we had been there to eat and drink previously – although we chose traditional Filipino cuisine from Kabayan Restaurant for our wedding day. The atmosphere at this hotel is intimate and has a homely feel to it, which we thought would create the perfect atmosphere for us."

"Our colour scheme was pale pink, peach and ivory with accents of gold. There were many DIY elements in our wedding which made it easier to achieve our vision: from making the church pew decorations, to setting the tables at the venue, to having personalised favours to making and hanging the organza ceiling drapes which completely transformed the venue. The lighting we chose really set the ambiance: the ceiling drapes were complemented with soft white fairy lights, the room had purple uplighters spotted around the walls, the top table had a starlight backdrop, each table had floating and tealight candles and as a focal point we had 4ft LOVE light up letters that our guests loved."

"The party was so much fun! Everyone enjoyed themselves, which made us enjoy ourselves even more. It’s a great feeling knowing that all your guests are having such a good time on your big day. The DJ was on point, playing tune after tune. There were dance-offs, the Electric Slide (“It’s like caaaandy”), a crazy conga line, as well as the Macarena (of course). We put fun photo props on each table so our guests had lots of photo fun before, during and after dinner. We also had a photo booth, which was a huge hit – the queue for that didn’t end. The package included a photo book with messages from our guests that we can look back on with fond memories."

"I have plenty of advice for other bride-to-bes!

  • Try on dresses that are not your size – I bought a dress that was two sizes smaller than my size and consequently didn’t need anything altered
  • Don’t allow anyone to change your vision…whether it be flowers, decor, dress, colour scheme etc…stick with what makes you happy
  • Make a formal photograph list for your photographer and suggest any other photo ideas that you might have in mind
  • Have someone appointed to fix your dress train Have friends/family members around who can help out and are happy to be bossed around without getting offended
  • Keep your lipstick/lip balm handy all day
  • Change into comfortable shoes for the party – I wore my Reebok Classics and Tarryn wore his Air Jordans!"

"Although it’s not tradition for the bride to give a speech, I would have liked to have said a few thank yous and said a couple of nice things about my new husband. I also wish I’d had a videographer to capture funny and sentimental moments, and the party."

"We have so many favourite moments from our special day…from the first moment we saw each other at the church to getting pelted by raw rice/confetti as we left the church, to the first dance, the conga line, the dance-offs and more…we wish the day lasted longer; it all went so fast."

"I remember Tarryn and I sitting on the top table looking at the venue and our guests and thinking: everything is just perfect! The venue looked beyond amazing, even better than we had envisaged. All our guests were having a great time and above all, we were now husband and wife. All our hard work and effort over the last three weeks had paid off and we couldn’t have been happier."

How To Arrive At A Thursley Village Hall Wedding In Style!

Jessie & Richard's wedding at Thursley Village Hall near Guildford in Surrey was refreshingly different from many of my weddings this year. The vintage bus they took from their ceremony at Artington House in Guildford to Thursley Village Hall was a fantastic touch, and the bride prep location at the Angel Hotel in Guildford town centre gave me chance to capture Jessica strutting her stuff through busy crowds of shoppers!

The couple met each other through a dating website. It took about 6 months for them to have their first date after Jessie kept going on overseas holidays when they first started chatting. Luckily they managed to meet up eventually and it went from there.

The wedding date had specific interest as Richard's family come from Wales, and Jessie is from New Zealand and both teams were playing their quarter final matches that very afternoon with many rugby fans in attendance. The outcome meant for happier Kiwis than the Welsh, but the wedding party that followed meant that any defeats were soon forgotten!


Cumberwell Park Golf Club Wedding with Eloise & Andrew

In early October I travelled off my usual patch to shoot a delightful wedding for some good friends over in Wiltshire at Cumberwell Park Golf Club near Bradford-on-Avon. Andrew spent most of his life in Hitchin, and not only brought a photographer with him from there, but also an outstanding magician in Lee Smith

Eloise and Andrew met just over 3 years ago on Ladies Day at Royal Ascot. Andrew spotted Eloise as part of a small group of attractive and ever so slightly tipsy young women struggling to take a photo of themselves and, after downing another beer, he had enough Dutch Courage to walk over and offer to take the photo for them. He then proceeded to bottle it after taking the photo and walked away without achieving the main objective of going over, but all was not lost as one of Eloise's friends chased after him and dragged him back to speak with her. Thankfully for Andrew, Eloise had her wine goggles on and thought he was a ‘bit of alright’ and they hit it off from the very first moment. Despite living 2 hours apart from each other, they made it work and Andrew then proceeded to make the big step of relocating his life to be with Eloise and her amazing son Charlie. A few years on and there they were surrounded by their nearest and dearest on their wedding day, with the addition of their gorgeous little daughter Rosie.

Back to 2015, and they couldn't have asked for better October weather, and after a wonderful ceremony the drinks reception in the park gardens gave Lee chance to show off his magic skills to the guests. Later that afternoon we would be chauffeured out on the golf course in buggies to get some shots of the newly weds. The after party was a lively affair with the band Dexter providing quality live music throughout. Big thanks to Nicola at Image Paradise Photography for her amazing Second Shooting on the day!


Hannah & David's Tewin Bury Farm Jewish Wedding - Hertfordshire

Tewin Bury Farm is one of Hertfordshire's most popular wedding and conference venues, and with good reason. It's well located, can cope with multiple functions at once, and offers delightful barns for wedding ceremonies and after parties!

Hannah & David both met at Oxford University, and now live together in North London. After a beautiful Jewish ceremony in the Tythe Barn, the guests enjoyed some September sunshine outside while the venue was prepared for the wedding breakfast. The speeches had many participants but the crowning glory was surely best man (and brother to the groom), Tim's epic speech that included several large cards including a venn diagram (a first for me!).

Later in the evening the bride's family Scottish heritage was indulged with everyone partaking in a wonderful Ceilidh dance that went on late into the evening.


Tri-County Wedding at Minstrel Court, Royston

The end of August saw Lorna & Gary tie the knot at St Mary's Church in Gamlingay, Cambridgeshire before heading over to Royston, Hertfordshire to Minstrel Court for the reception. The day began for Lorna at Maxwell's Salon in Biggleswade, Bedfordshire the town where the couple live where I met the bridal party and grabbed some shots of them getting hair and make up. The 3 counties traversed this day was probably a record for me, however all venues were actually within 20mins of each other!

The history on how Lorna met Gary is as follows: Gary went out for his friend Surbey's 30th birthday in Cambridge, Lorna got invited because she knew Surbey's girlfriend and her sister's then boyfriend (he's now her husband) pulled out so there was a space available for Lorna on the bus to get there.  They met on the dance floor in B Bar in Cambridge, which is now known as Baroosh. That was November 2005 - 10 years ago! They have since had a beautiful little girl (Annelise) who along with Laina acted as a Flower Girl on the day.

So back to the day in hand. Once at Minstrel Court, the drink began to flow, and eventually the children made way for the adults on the bouncy castle. Before the first dance I was able to take Lorna & Gary out into the beautiful grounds there to grab a night shot of them from across the lake. Once back inside Lorna and Gary both led the attack on the dance floor and many other dutifully followed.


Essendon Country Club Wedding that's two over Par

Louise & Mark met on a random pub night out three years ago at a pub after Mark had played football and Louise had sunk a few Prosecco's. There happened to be an 18th birthday party there at the time and despite not knowing the birthday boy or girl, Louise felt it her duty to gatecrash the disco, and Mark felt duty-bound to make sure she wasn't alone out there.  In their own words "We were both awful and completely out of time to everyone else, and at least 15 years older than the eldest!" They then bonded over our mutual love of the gym and a good curry.
Fast forward to 2015 and their wedding took place at the beautiful Essendon Country Club, a well known golf course in the centre of Hertfordshire. The theme was old New York and the tables were beautifully decorated, and Louise's stepdad, Alan created some beautiful New York skyline backdrops himself. The venue kindly provided us with two golf buggies to go and get a few shots out on the golf course which of course we took advantage of!

The speeches were emotional as Louise's father, Stuart sadly passed back in 2011 but he would have been extremely proud of his daughter, and Mark.


Weddings at Cley Windmill, Wells-Next-The-Sea Norfolk are definitely different

My first wedding in a windmill was always going to be an experience I'd never forget, and Cley Windmill in Wells-Next-The-Sea, Norfolk was as quirky and fun as I expected it to be! Alex & Chad used the wonderful Victoria Inn at Holkham as their base for their wedding, getting ready there in the morning, and eventually having the reception party there later that afternoon.

The ceremony room in the windmill has a low guest capacity which suited this small and intimate wedding perfectly. After the ceremonial necessities, the party moved outdoors for drinks and canapés in the gardens of the windmill, but after 30mins the weather closed in and forced retreat under a large gazebo.

Fortunately back at the Victoria Inn, the weather dried up and we were able to get a confetti and group shot, before moving back into the pub itself for the reception. For a look at the full gallery, please click on this link!

Weddings at Rectory Farm Cambridge don't get much better than this!

Weddings at Rectory Farm in Cambridge are always a pleasure to photograph. Nicola and Andy managed to combine their reception party there with a beautiful church service at St Ippolyts church just outside Hitchin. If couples could have their cat as a page boy, then these guys would have, as their pride and joy, Buster sadly had to watch the house instead but still got involved by wearing a bow tie for the occasion and supervising the bridal prep at their house that morning. Instead of the more traditional white Rolls Royce or vintage car, Nicola and Andy were escorted between venues in a fantastic 1970's Citroen DS, real retro classic!

The speeches that followed the wedding breakfast were awash with emotion, before the groom traditionally received a fairly warm roasting from his best man, Martin. After I had taken the newly weds out into the beautiful Rectory Farm grounds for a few posed photos, the dance floor soon filled with bodies as Andy's playlist kept both the lads and the ladies entertained through the evening.

Full of charm, and easily accessible to the M11, I would recommend this Rectory Farm whole heartedly as a fantastic wedding venue.

For even more images from this amazing day, why not view their full Online Gallery!