A lakeside wedding at Deene Park

All the elegance, a sailcloth marquee & cake for breakfast

Brace yourself. This is a cracker of a wedding! Thanks to Covid, it was a long time coming. Steph and Lee had to postpone their wedding for a year. And in the last few weeks, they were still on tenterhooks wondering if restrictions would ease up enough for the day to go ahead. Happily, it was all ok. And everyone celebrated accordingly.

Cake for breakfast

Never mind the childhood home, floral PJs, or huge hugs. Steph started her wedding day the way I wish I could start every day – with cake! Lee, who is quite the baker, secretly baked madeleines for Steph’s brunch and smuggled them to her parents’ house without her knowing. So instead of a champagne toast, they toasted with madeleines! A lesson for us all in allowing time for unplanned moments and photos to unfold!

Meanwhile, Lee and his groomsmen got ready at The Swallow’s Rest, a boutique B&B in Brigstock. After some expert lint roller technique from one of the Ushers, they were ready to head to the church (via the pub for a quick pint!) looking ultra smart in top hats and tails.

Village church ceremony and confetti downpour

Steph and Lee had a classic church ceremony in the village of Brigstock, where Steph grew up. The arched doorway looked incredible decorated with fresh whites and greens. So it immediately went on my ‘must-have’ list for a traditional portrait as they left the church. That kind of photo will always end up as a favourite heirloom.

Coming out of the church, it looked like it might rain. So their superstar ushers leapt into action, armed with baskets of umbrellas as well as confetti. Luckily the rain stayed away, and instead, they were met with a shower of confetti – and I mean a proper downpour of the stuff!

It always surprises me how confetti gets everywhere. Flower petals filled the rim of Lee’s top hat, which he had to take off and empty, and Steph had to give her bouquet a good shake. Even my camera bag took a hit!

Steph and Lee enjoyed a vintage car ride to their reception at Deene Park. And all the guests travelled on a red double-decker bus. A bus is a great idea as no one has to stress over directions, parking or drawing the short straw and having to drive.

Marquee wedding reception

Steph and Lee wanted to fit their portraits around their drinks reception so they didn’t have to leave partway through. So as soon as they arrived at the reception, we squirrelled away for some photos of just the two of them. The owners’ private courtyard is ideal for this as it’s away from curious eyes. And later on, as all the guests made their way to dinner, we created some iconic ‘Deene Park’ portraits using the lake and bridge.

In-between, Steph and Lee enjoyed champagne on the lawn with their guests, without worrying about being pulled away for a photo at any moment. And I had plenty of time to capture all the natural photos which were really important to them.

By the time the wedding breakfast started, the clouds had cleared and the sun was shining. Cue a blue sky backdrop for Steph and Lee’s elegant sailcloth marquee which looked right at home nestled amongst the trees by the lake.

Golden hour magic

A cocktail hour followed the wedding breakfast; with guests chatting in the evening sun, enjoying garden games, and relaxing in a ‘naked tipi’ (the tipi was naked… not the guests!) with comfy cushions and snuggly blankets. It was a welcome sight to see everyone enjoying the outdoors and chilling out together. Especially after a long year of lockdowns and restrictions.

We also snuck in some spontaneous golden hour portraits. We didn’t plan these, but the relaxed feeling made them some of Steph’s favourite pictures. It’s always worth taking 5 minutes if you’re lucky enough to get light like this.

To kick the evening off, Steph changed into sparkly trainers (some serious partying ahead!). And they cut their cake (I’m not sure was so funny but I loved capturing their reactions!). They then surprised their guests with a choreographed Viennese waltz as a nod to their Vienna engagement. What a day!

Getting married at Deene Park?

You might fancy checking out my page dedicated to weddings at Deene Park. It’s got plenty more photos, links to weddings and some of my favourite things about the venue itself.

Got questions? I’d love to hear from you.