Adam & Katie’s wedding at Barton Hall

November 8, 2014

Adam & Katie’s wedding had pink & grey, lots of laughter and flowers in drawers. It had a whole lot of love and lace too. There were balloons and poems and sparklers and magic. We had a ball.

 

About Adam & Katie

Katie came home from work one day, expecting a normal evening at home before work again the next day. Adam had other plans. He’d secretly booked Katie a few days off work and was waiting with two packed suitcases. He whisked her off to Paris, with a secret one-of a kind sparkly thing he’d designed himself, arranged a private meal on the Eiffel Tower, had a photographer in disguise hovering in the wings, waited for sunset and then asked Katie to marry him. What a keeper!

Romance is a way of life for Adam & Katie. They have big hearts and glow with happiness. They’re two of the most in-love and enchanting clients a girl could wish to work with. Their families and friends are just as amazing; Georgi and I had such a wonderful time in their company.

Right from their first enquiry I knew we’d get on. Adam wrote a really lovely email telling me about their day and said that they’re fellow Hollyoaks fans. That’s all I needed to know!

On a sunny day in September they became BFFs, surrounded by their bestest people. I know bestest isn’t a word, but it seems to do the trick. They married at the church in Barton Seagrave, which holds a special place in their hearts, and their reception was a short walk away at Barton Hall.

Adam & Katie wanted mostly natural, documentary wedding photographs. Spending time with their guests and having a chance to speak to everyone was very important to them. So we kept the formal stuff to a minimum. They were wonderfully easy-going and gave us freedom to just get on and do what we do.

 

Adam & Katie’s wedding style

Adam & Katie’s attention to detail was such that it took two Georgi and I a couple of hours to photograph everything. We love details and if they’re important to our clients, we’ll spend plenty of time getting great photos of them. But however big a part of your day the details are, they are no more important than the people and moments. Knowing in advance what you have planned helps us work out how much time we’ll need to photograph them and how best to fit it in around everything else. For Adam & Katie we were there early in the morning and worked through dinner to get it all done, so that it wasn’t at the expense of the ‘people’ and ‘moments’.

 

Adam & Katie had really thought through the ‘journey’ that their guests would take during the day. For example, the walkway down to the Orangery was prettied up with a vintage bike, hanging hearts and spirals of flowers.

 

The Orangery itself is a great blank canvas. You can pretty much take anything and put it in there. Adam & Katie had a series of ‘sets’, fashioned from bookcases, cabinets, wooden fruit crates and chests of drawers. Flowers, old books, vintage china, framed photos, candles, strings of pearls and all manner of trinkets decorated each piece. They brought in extra tables & chairs so guests could make themselves comfy. And in the evening the chests were home to chocolate fondue and sweet stations.

 

And then there was a step ladder table plan, carefully chosen favours for each person, words of wisdom to write, bubbles to blow and fortune teller games to play. The wedding cake was a main attraction, beautifully displayed with cupcakes.

 

Extra lighting that was hired in for the evening gave such a romantic warm glow to the Orangery and the trees looked pretty strung with fairylights.

 

Adam & Katie’s wedding photography

It was early Saturday morning and nothing was stirring when I parked at Katie’s parents’ house. But like a secret club it was all happening behind closed doors. I arrived to find ‘Team Katie’ sat at the kitchen table, in gorgeous floral robes, surrounded by make-up, mirrors and mugs of tea. Katie’s parents were nervously keeping busy and chivvying everyone along, while their furry friend watched bemused at all the activity. It was such a special, close-knit morning with everyone helping each other. It made me love my job even more.

 

While I was with the girls, Georgi met Adam and his Best Men who were getting ready at Barton Hall. In typical guy style they got ready really quickly, amid plenty of banter. They then met up with family for a quick drink and to figure out how to pin button-holes; before making the short walk across the road to church.

 

The ceremony was held at St Botolph’s Church in Barton Seagrave.

 

The Bride’s arrival is always a highlight for me. It’s a privilege to see as it’s hidden from everyone else. And Katie’s arrival was no exception in sending shivers down my spine.

 

So often churches can feel cold and distant. Today we received a really warm and supportive welcome.  There were very clear rules about only photographing from one particular spot at the back of the church but the Vicar and his team were kind, helpful and seemed genuinely happy to have us there. They made sure we had everything we needed, a dedicated space where we could work free of guests and happily explained where everything would happen.  It’s not always so easy and it meant we could do our best for Adam & Katie. We were very happy bunnies in comfy padded seats. Usually we’re knelt on a cold, hard, dusty floor!

 

The first few moments after coming out of the church are always filled with the biggest smiles, twinkliest eyes and hardest hugs. Katie and Adam allowed themselves time to take it all in while Georgi and I darted about among the crowd to capture all those happy expressions. It can be hard to photograph this part of the day thoroughly because there’s often not much room to move; it’s a time where having two photographers really helps.

 

The drinks reception was held in the Orangery at Barton Hall. It was a warm, sunny day and all the doors were open letting the air blow through to keep everyone cool. Once Adam & Katie arrived, the guests spilled onto the lawn to enjoy their drinks while the string quartet entertained everyone with Bruno Mars & Coldplay.

 

Adam & Katie had booked Alan Hodge as their toastmaster. A very wise choice. He’s the best at gathering guests for group photos. We had a long list of photos from Adam & Katie but it was made up of lots of variations of a relatively small group of people, so it didn’t take very long. With Alan on hand to move people around, it meant I could take the time to make the photos a fun and relaxed experience rather than a rushed, formal one. You get naturally happy expressions that way. And because I was able to concentrate on taking the photos rather than looking for guests, I was also free to capture the fun moments before and after the ‘official’ photo which are so often the ones clients love most because of the ‘real’ feeling.

 

Katie’s Dad’s speech was up there with the most original I’ve heard. He started with the traditional welcome’s and thank you’s; then just stood up, completely deadpan, started pacing around the room and recited his speech as a poem that he’d written. It took everyone by surprise. Katie’s reaction was priceless.

 

Adam and Katie planned an untraditional, chilled out evening of celebration. It was a night with something for everyone; perfect for chatting and enjoying time together. There was an acoustic duo, a magician, lots of guest book selfies, a balloon release, board games and a sparkler send off at the end of the night as they headed off on honeymoon.

 

Tips for couples planning a similar wedding

  1. Think about what you, your bridesmaids and families will wear when you’re getting ready. Of course it needs to be practical for hair and make-up but that outfit will be immortalised in your photos!
  2. Choose efficient Ushers or book a Toastmaster to help with your group photos. That will allow your photographer to put all their time into actually taking photos rather than trying to find people.
  3. Let your photographer know about your plans for the details and decor so that they can allow the right amount of time to photograph them, without compromising on photos of people and moments.
  4. Consider having two photographers. This really comes into its’ own in the morning when you can have photos of both of you getting ready.

 

6 Comments

  1. Jo Hastings on November 9, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    Beautiful work Sarah, it looks like a fabulous wedding to be a guest at :-)



  2. Sarah Vivienne on November 10, 2014 at 11:08 am

    oh thanks Jo! It was; Adam & Katie put a lot of effort into making it fun for everyone. Thanks for taking the time to comment xx



  3. Cheryl on November 11, 2014 at 11:53 am

    Beautiful work as always Sarah Fab to work with you! xxx



  4. Sarah Vivienne on November 11, 2014 at 7:25 pm

    oh you too Cheryl! Always lovely to see and work with you all. Thanks for commenting xx



  5. Angela on November 20, 2014 at 10:53 pm

    Whose been a busy girl then? Attention to detail or what, takes your breath away. Just like looking at a magazine. Brilliant as usual Sarah, well done.
    ps Congratulation on your latest MPA award. Very well deserved.xx



  6. Sarah Vivienne on November 21, 2014 at 12:30 pm

    Thanks! I didn’t know where to start with photographing all those details! Kid in a sweet shop springs to mind.



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