Anna and Colin

An intimate wedding at Dodmoor House

I love weddings, but this one was particularly special. Anna is an amazing wedding florist and after 15 years of working together, she’s become a very good friend. So it was a real honour to not just photograph Anna and Colin’s wedding, but also to be part of their day.

When I got an email from Anna asking me to shoot her wedding, I sat up straighter than Claudia Winkleman’s fringe! It’s always amazing when a couple chooses you to shoot their wedding, but Anna is one of my business besties, which made it extra special. She’s an amazing florist (check out her work if you’re in need of one!) but … she really doesn’t like being in front of the camera. And I know the choice to even have a photographer at all was a big decision. So I felt hugely honoured to get that chance.

“Looking through our photos we were literally … love that one, love that one, ooohh look at that one! So unbelievably happy … thank you!” Anna and Colin

Choosing the venue

Like lots of couples, Anna and Colin had to change their plans because of the pandemic. Boooo! Their initial plan to get married abroad had to be cancelled because of travel restrictions. But they couldn’t wait to get married, so decided to go ahead in the UK. Even then, they had to postpone another two dates over the winter. So it was fourth-time lucky when they finally got their day.

One of Anna’s favourite local venues is Dodmoor House (it’s one of mine too!) and it was the obvious choice for her and Colin. They wanted a relaxed day – more of a gathering than a wedding – with their closest friends and family – and me, sneaking about with my camera! Dodmoor’s chilled and homely vibe was ideal for an intimate wedding day. It’s a family-run venue with a caring, attentive team. You couldn’t wish for better.

Time to say “I do” – at last!

Anna did her own wedding flowers, of course. And on the day of the wedding, I arrived to find Anna putting the finishing touches to the floral displays before getting into her dress. She was busy making sure everything was ready. Well, everything apart from herself. She was still in PJs. Floral ones, obvs! We hadn’t planned on me capturing her preparations, but I couldn’t resist a florist in floral PJs doing her own wedding flowers!

Even though masks had to be worn for the ceremony, you could still see the smiles on everyone’s faces as Anna and Colin finally said “I do”. Anna even tried to say “I do” a little bit too soon … “But I’m desperate!”, she exclaimed, and then had us all doubled over when she realised the double meaning of what she’d said! #favemoment

During the ceremony, Anna’s niece gave a brave and emotional reading. Her mum provided a helping hug so she could finish, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, including the registrar, who apparently never cries at weddings! And as her nephew stepped forward with their rings, Anna provided more comic relief when she realised she still had her engagement ring on her left hand, and surreptitiously struggled to get it off!

Moments like this are where it pays to have a photographer at the front of the ceremony room. There’s so much emotion to capture that you’d miss from the back of the room.

Relaxed, unposed wedding photography

After the ceremony, it was time to chill. Because of Government restrictions, the drinks reception was table-service-style. But rather than being a limitation, this actually helped create an easy-going atmosphere. Everyone was able to find a comfy seat, take the weight off their feet, and completely chill in the gardens.

My documentary wedding photography was ideal for this. Not only was it Covid-safe, it also meant everyone could continue with their fun, while I blended into the background and captured all the good stuff. And because formal group photos weren’t high on their list of priorities, I had time to make sure every guest featured at least once in the photos.

And in the end, Anna and Colin found it much less daunting to be in front of the camera than they expected. (My work here is done.)

After some portraits of the two of them in front of the house, they were ready for their wedding breakfast. But not before I managed to sneak some of my favourite shots of the day as they waited together, enjoying a quick hug and checking out their new wedding rings before making their grand entrance!

Planning a wedding at Dodmoor House?

I’d love to hear from you. I’ve got a whole page dedicated to the venue and all my lovely couples who got married at Dodmoor right here. And I know a pretty amazing florist who loves it there too!