Hot Bride. Handsome Groom. A Tibetan Terrier named Ted. An extremely hectic dance floor. A sparkler departure and one of my all-time favourite venues - Hampton Court House. What do these things have in common?! All key ingredients at Harriet & Alistair's Extremely Excellent Wedding™ of course! Man, this was a fun one. The sheer surfeit of smiles, the abundance of laughter and the depth of emotion.
Harriet got ready at her parents home in Hampton before taking the short drive round the corner to Hampton Court House. I quite often bemoan the fact that bridal shops rarely send an 'assistant' to help a Bride into her dress during what is usually a tense, nervous and butterfingered point in proceedings. I presume it's just not that doable, but I've always thought it's something that would set a boutique apart. Anyway, Harriet wisely decided to buy a stunning Stewart Parvin number. This was both beautiful and fortuitous as one of her close friends works for the designer and as such was on hand to make the tail-end of the getting ready process smooth and relaxed. This was awesome - Bridal boutiques, you're missing a trick here!
I've shot a host of weddings at Hampton Court House, but this was the first time the marriage itself has taken place there. It was really interesting to see it as a 'start-to-finish' venue and have an opportunity to photograph a ceremony in the wonderful central hall. Flowers were by the seriously gifted Steph Turpin of Fairy Nuff Flowers - we've collaborated at Hampton Court House a couple of times in the past - and as usual, the bouquets and details were just stunning. Harriet & Alistair were great sports as we dodged the rain for portraits - thank God for giant oak trees (!) - and when it came time for speeches and dancing the soul and commitment on display in both departments was breathtaking. Seriously, this wedding rocked. Harriet & Ali's guests waved them off in style, the night closing with a particularly picturesque, and muchos fun, sparkler departure.
Harriet & Ali's families were both fantastic, and I was particularly touched by this incredibly kind email from Harriet's father:
"I’m just sending you this belated email to say thank you so much for capturing Harriet & Ali’s Wedding Day so wonderfully. I know I’m biased, but I’ve never seen so many photographs that capture the mood and feel of a day. I’ve just watched them through again and it was like living the day again. I don’t know how we will be able to select photos for the album – virtually every photo deserves a place!"
Shooting weddings is amazing, but it's also tough. When the reaction is like this, it's deeply humbling. Many thanks for having me guys.