Wow! Where do I begin? To be honest I am feeling pretty overwhelmed after Saturday's wedding. Amazing venue, amazing couple, amazing suppliers, amazing weather and an amazing number of guests. It feels such an honour to have weathered the storm of covid and to be back doing what I love, telling peoples love stories - insert maximum cheese level here but my heart felt so full driving home after this perfect day.
Amazing venue - Ardington House
I have been longing to visit Ardington House for a long time and it certainly didn't disappoint. An exclusive use Georgian manor house venue in South Oxfordshire. From the initial grandeur of the exterior and immaculate lawns to the pool with rose lined pool house, river edged meadow, staircase from a fairy-tale and even your very own temple island for your ceremony it truly is a photographers dream.
The exclusive use means your closest friends and family have run of the house which just creates the very best relaxed atmosphere. Guests gather round the giant kitchen island, sharing food and drinks as kids are more than entertained in the play rooms and the big kids get to play bar billiards and table tennis in the basement resulting in a true coming together of two families long before the ceremony even starts.
Amazing Couple - Chloe & Carlos
I originally met this wonderful pair when Chloe was a bridesmaid at her best friend Stephanie's wedding in 2019 - as is often the case, the majority of my bookings come from people I meet at weddings who see me working. Since then we have walked a rocky road through covid together. This wedding should have originally taken place in 2020 and through various announcements, postponement and other hurdles Chloe and Carlos have been a total pleasure to deal with for which I will always be incredibly grateful - looking that good and being that generous and kind spirited definately shouldn't be allowed ;-) Despite her dislike of all things nature and especially all things crawly, Chloe has always been incredibly patient with my crazy ideas from their engagement shoot through to their wedding day and I think you will agree the results speak for themselves!
Right from the start there was the most amazing atmosphere in the house, a combination of having so many friends and family near but also by the obvious careful selection of suppliers. Suppliers that were clearly professional and well organised but also incredibly relaxed in the way they work and who's priority was putting people around them at ease. From the amazing staff at Ardington House who had the most wonderful traditional butler style skills of seeming invisible but always being there as soon as anyone needed them, through to the catering team from Fingers and Forks who I can honestly say were the most organised and friendly event catering team I have ever worked with. Brush Ltd hair and make up were great in the morning, Flowers by Kirsty produced stunning work and the Cotswold Ensemble helped to create that magical summer garden party feel throughout the afternoon. The amazing cake from Carlos' sister looked and tasted AMAZING. Special mention also to Chris, a wonderful videographer who definately restored my faith in videographers being friendly and great to work with, it was so nice to bounce ideas with another creative soul rather than fighting for the same shots. Just take a look at these amazing getting ready and detail shots, pictures really do speak louder than words!
Guests! And lots of them - well a lot compared to what we are currently used to!
There were rows of people watching the ceremony, confetti tunnels, fun with the wedding party, speeches with tables of emotional faces to see, and even a bit of dancing (no dancefloor, but its not illegal to dance and people can dance anywhere they want!)
And I definately couldn't write this without a special mention to the "wedding party" who due to the turmoil of the last 18 months was reduced to just two just in case numbers had to be restricted again. But these two not only are the couples best friends they were fantastic on the day making sure the couple were so well looked after - Stephanie & Ronan this bit is just for you!
So that is it! The first big wedding post covid is done. I can't even begin to put into words how special if feels to get the sense of some kind of normality creeping in and I definately couldn't have asked for a better day to start! Thank you to all involved.
Venue - Ardington House
Catering - Fingers and Forks
Suit - Hugo Boss
Videographer - Christopher James Wedding Films
Hair and Make Up - Brush Ltd
Flowers - Flowers by Kirsty
Cake - Maria Bonita
Rings - James Allen Rings
DJ - DJ Live Events
Photobooth - Smiley Booth
String Quartet - Cotswold Ensemble
Mens Shoes - Ferragamo