Hertford Wedding Photographer: Jonny & Jay’s Wedding at Vanstone Park

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Back in June I shot Jonny and Jay’s fantastic Country Tipi’s wedding at Vanstone Park venue.

I had a great morning with the girls capturing their bridal prep, and particularly loved the South African trinkets around the house. With a South African theme part of Jay’s heritage I couldn’t resist doing a bit of a different ring shot using an elephant ornament.

Engagement ring on an

Bohemian wedding invitation design

The pair were married at Jay’s old school, St George’s in Harpenden. After a beautiful ceremony in the chapel there, we headed towards the reception venue at Country Tipi’s Vanstone Park venue, with Jonny & Jay in a beautiful vintage car. We stopped en route down the country lanes to take some time out and get some portraits in an area we had scouted previously.

Church wedding venue in Hertfordshire

Group shot of wedding party outside church

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I love incorporating nature wherever possible in my wedding days and I truly love the shots we got in the woods near Codicote.

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I’ve shot at Country Tipi’s before and worked with them on a styled shoot so was really looking forward to being back at the venue. The tipis looked amazing and the grounds have been sculptured since I was last there.

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To keep with the South African theme there were super cute little safari animal favours on the tables.

The day went absolutely beautifully and I wanted to stay and party at the end of the night – the dancefloor was heaving!

Bride and grooms party posing for group photo

Vanstone Park wedding venue

Black and white photo of bride and groom

Tipi Wedding venue near London

Guest Blog Post: Guides for Brides’ Top UK Outdoor Wedding Venues

I am all about community over competition, so love a good guest blog post on my website! This week, I have Guides for Brides giving the low down on their top 6 outdoor wedding venues in the UK. I adore outdoor weddings – the english countryside is  so beautiful, why not embrace it!

Over to Guides for Brides with their ultimate list…

The Mill Barns, Shropshire

Gorgeous barn wedding venue lit at night

*All images in this blog are not my own, they are from Guides for Brides

This beautiful barn wedding venue is set on the site of a former 17th water mill, which means that you can get married waterside, on their sunny outdoor Terrace overlooking The Mill Pond. The Terrace is licensed for outdoor weddings of up to 170 guests, which means that they accommodate weddings big and small, and the eight acres of gardens make for amazing wedding photography. Inside, the impressive oak-beamed barns bring the outdoors in, meaning you don’t have to sacrifice a natural feel if the weather isn’t fantastic.   

Kippilaw House, Scottish Borders

Bride and groom getting married under sunlit trees in England

Kippilaw House is a stunning manor house near Edinburgh set in its own private woodland, which makes it the perfect setting for a humanist ceremony under the boughs of an ancient tree. Unlike in England and Wales, humanist ceremonies are legal in Scotland, so Kippilaw is ideal for romantic outdoor elopements, too. Both the grounds and the gorgeous 15th century manor house are available for weddings between April and October, with winter weddings available on request, and can accomodate weddings between 75 and 100 guests.

The Walled Garden, Cowdray Park, West Sussex

Newly married couple kissing under large tree

A garden is the perfect place to hold an outdoor wedding ceremony, and what prettier garden than The Walled Garden in West Sussex? This historic grade I listed wedding venue is set within the award-winning grounds of Cowdray Park, near to Cowdray Ruins. Hold your wedding here and you could say your vows underneath the fragrant Rose Pavilion surrounded by flowers, before moving into The Courtyard Room or The Castle Room for your wedding reception. The Walled Garden can hold weddings of up to 150 guests, or you could opt for an intimate wedding of less than 30.  

Ocean Kave, Devon

Outdoor wedding venue by the sea in UK

If you’ve always dreamed of a beach wedding, then Ocean Kave could be the perfect seaside wedding venue for you. Set in the picturesque North Devon coastline, Ocean Kave does exactly what is says on the tin, as you can hold your wedding ceremony and reception in a rustic candle-lit cave – ideal for intimate gatherings. Alternatively, hold your outdoor wedding in their licensed gazebo overlooking the coastline, or in their glass-fronted Sunset Rooms. Whichever you choose, your guests are in for an incredible view!

Notley Abbey, Buckinghamshire

Notley Abbey outdoor wedding venue

Notley Abbey is one of the most beautiful country house wedding venues in Buckinghamshire, and unsurprisingly has a stunning garden to match! The Walled Garden is made up of the ruins of the historical Abbey, and includes a picturesque ivy-clad nook for your legal ceremony to take place. The Walled Garden can fit up to 190 guests for a wedding ceremony, and after the wedding breakfast indoors you can retire to the lawns for drinks with your evening guests as the sun goes down. Just perfect!

Lamorran Gardens, Truro

Newly married couple under an outdoor canopy

*All images in this blog are not my own, they are from Guides for Brides

For a small outdoor wedding, Lamorran Gardens in Truro, Cornwall has to be one of the most picture-perfect options in the South West. You and up to 30 guests will feel like you’re at a destination wedding, thanks to the garden’s stunning exotic palms and ferns, as well as camellias, azaleas and rhododendrons galore. Say your vows under the stone pillars and temple roof of the The Cupola in the middle of the gardens, with beautiful views over St Anthony’s Headland and the lighthouse, before enjoying your champagne reception on the terrace of the house.

Thank you so much to Guides for Brides for their guest blog post. These are some seriously gorgeous wedding venues! If you’re getting married outdoors, get in touch – I would love to shoot your big day 🙂

For more stunning outdoor wedding venues, visit Guides for Brides and set up your free online wedding planner. My 2019 diary is filling up fast, so get in touch to save your date 🙂 

Caroline x x

London Wedding Photographer: Why you should have sunset portraits on your wedding day

Country Tipis wedding photography

Here, I’m going to make the case for fitting in sunset portraits on your wedding day! You may have heard photographers excitedly talking about golden hour and wondering when exactly this mystical being is. It’s that time just before sunset when the sky has turned that gorgeous fading orange and the light is magically soft.

Why do photographers love golden hour so much?

As wedding photographers, or any type of photographer in fact, we know that light is the key ingredient to any photo. The light as the sun is falling is beautifully diffused and soft – completely different to the light in the middle of the day, which can be harsh and create huge shadows. As well as this, sunset perfectly lends itself to stunningly romantic images, especially when you shoot in my kind of style – soft and dreamy.

Bohemian bride at sunset wearing floral crown

How do I achieve them at my wedding?

With weddings in good old England, common timings will be that the ceremony will be around lunchtime, and portraits will happen immediately after. Really, this is at the worst time of the day as the sun is strong and harsh (this is the point in the day when your wedding photographer is keeping their fingers crossed for cloud cover).

Depending on when in the year your wedding is, sunset normally falls between the speeches and the first dance, or if you are in high summer, after first dance. If it falls between speeches and first dance this is the perfect opportunity to get some sunset portraits done! It’s the point in the day when everyone is normally well into the swing of the party and you have the chance to sneak off. We also aren’t talking about being gone for an hour – 15 minutes should be enough if you choose the right time. You have a slot of about an hour before sunset, to around 20 minutes after it. If you are considering sunset portraits just talk to your wedding photographer and plan ahead

And here is proof of why you should DEFINITELY DO THEM 😉

Outdoor Tipi wedding with celebrant

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If you are someone who equally loves sunsets and are getting married, get in touch! Caroline x

London Wedding Photographer: Suzannah & Ben’s Shad Thames Engagement Shoot

Summery couple kissing in cobbled sunlit street

This weekend, Suzannah and Ben are getting married at the stunning Lost Orangery in Chippenham. I honestly can’t wait for it –  it should be a brilliant, relaxed day. Back in May, I met them for their engagement shoot in the lovely Shad Thames/ Bermondsey. It was the start of the London heatwave and we had a relaxed stroll around the local area, using the interesting back streets and river side buildings of Butler’s Wharf. I love couples who choose a location close to their heart – this was Suzannah & Ben’s old neighbourhood, before they moved to Singapore.

My style is usually inspired by nature, featuring lots of foliage and trees, so this was something a bit different for me. Saying that, I have really loved mixing it up this year with more urban engagement shoots around London. This was a great part of town for a pre wedding shoot – plenty of quirky backdrops, as well as awesome views of Tower Bridge!

Engaged couple stood in fronton Butler's Wharf in summer

Shad Thames engagement shoot

During my initial consultation meetings with my couples, pretty much everyone asks why an engagement shoot is important. Most hate the camera and don’t really want to be in front of it more than necessary! This is exactly the reason I think they are a must. We get to know each other, you get comfortable around the camera, and I can figure out how to get the best from you ahead of your big day. I’ve written a whole blog post on this, and offer engagement shoots with all my packages.

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Well dressed couple

Couple walking down Butler's Wharf with Tower Bridge behind

I absolutely love Ben and Suzannah’s engagement story – on a road trip in Australia, Ben popped the question under the stars while the pair were camping.  They then spent the next day swimming with humpback whales.. any story which features swimming with, or even just seeing whales is a total winner in my eyes!

Shad Thames engagement shoot

Bermondsey pre wedding shoot

To book your 2019 wedding or an engagement shoot, drop me a message – I would love to hear from you! Keep an eye on my Instagram for previews of Suzannah & Ben’s wedding this weekend.

Caroline xx

London Wedding Photographer: Hollie & Jon’s Colourful Brick Lane Engagement Shoot

Engaged couple cuddling in front of Whitby Street graffiti

At the start of April, I met Hollie and Jon by the the historic Ten Bells pub, ready for our Shoreditch street art engagement shoot. It was the start of the *good weather (*temporary), and by the photos you would think we were in mid summer thanks to Hollie’s gorgeous dress.

We set off down Brick Lane, with the first stop being one of my favourite street art locations – a small mews opposite The Monsoon restaurant, which is covered in large art works.

Working our way down to Shoreditch High Street and Box Park, we stopped at Hanbury Street, home to the wonderful Blitz vintage store, The Canvas Cafe.. and at the moment this huge sumo wrestler art. This is one of my favourite roads coming off Brick Lane – at the end of the road there are two huge murals, both of which we made use of for this shoot.

Couple walking past sumo wrestler street art in Shoreditch

I have never done a truly urban pre wedding shoot before – I normally tend to shoot at locations with plenty of greenery and natural settings, so this was completely different! However, working around the area everyday, I’ve always wanted to do a Brick Lane engagement shoot so really glad Hollie and Jon chose this as their spot. The sheer number of people about was a challenge but the colours, graffiti designs, and of course lovely Hollie & Jon made the whole thing super easy and enjoyable! It’s definitely one of the most vibrant engagement

Couple stood in front of love street art

The sun was just starting to set as we came to our final locations around Redchurch Street / Chance Street. Jimmy C’s art on Whitby Street have always been some of my favourite pieces here, so I was really glad to get his portrait of a woman included in the shoot.

Couple holding hands next to graffitied wall

Couple holding hands against colourful wall with street art

Natural photo of couple smiling at camera against street art graffiti

Get in touch to book a shoot here, or check out my blog post on why I think pre wedding shoots are so important. For more engagement shoot ideas, head to my Pinterest board

Caroline x

A couple stood in front of a red, yellow and blue mural on Chance Street, Shoreditch

London Wedding Photographer: Why Is An Engagement Shoot Important?

'london engagement photography', 'wedding photography east london', 'engagement photography hampstead heath'

With all my wedding packages, I offer a free engagement shoot. Not everyone wants one, but I think they are really important, and heres why:

1. Get to know your Wedding Photographer and vice versa!

Engagement shoots are such a great way for me to get to know you, and for you to get to know me! I’m very relaxed, and generally like a good chat and a giggle with my couples while doing a shoot. I think it’s really important you feel comfortable around your wedding photographer, and an engagement shoot is a fantastic way to break the ice, and also for me to find out more about your wedding day!

2. Practice for the Big Day

On an engagement shoot I get to see how you and your fiance are with each other naturally, which guides the way I need to direct you on your big day. Some couples prefer being in front of the camera more than others, and I’ll work to get the best out of you both. By the time your wedding comes around, you’ll know exactly what to expect in terms of the way I work.

wanstead engagement shoot, wanstead wedding photographer, wanstead park bluebells, east london engagement shoot

3. It’s fun!

No but seriously.. it is 🙂 Even if you don’t like having your photograph taken! All of my couples come away saying they really enjoyed their engagement shoots. I try to make it as chilled out and fun as possible, and amongst the stress of wedding planning this can be an opportunity for quality time with your fiance!

4. Get some lovely photos of you together 

It can be rare couples get professional photos done together so this can be a great chance to get some nice shots of you together – No selfies or grainy mobile phone shots here 🙂  You can also then use the photos to create save the dates, table plans or decorations, or use on your wedding site.

If you are interested in booking an engagement shoot with me, or getting a wedding package, drop me a message 

Caroline x

London engagement shoot in front of Queen House in Greenwich

 

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London Wedding Photographer: Alternative London Venues – One Friendly Place in Greenwich

One-Friendly-Place

One Friendly place in Greenwich was one of the first places I second shot with Robin Ball photography, a good few years ago now, but it stuck in my memory as a venue I would love to go back to.

Built in the 1930s, One Friendly Place was originally a spice warehouse, tucked away on a private road in Deptford. It’s warehouse charm is not your traditional venue – think exposed walls, brightly coloured murals and abstract art, and lots of fun and unique props! If you start to feel a bit tired there is even a double bed upstairs to rest your dancing feet for a little while 😉

Affectionately known as one of the quirkiest venues in London, this place definitely has a bit of everything. Alongside the main space, there is a little greenhouse-esque area with peacock chairs and plants, making a great portrait area. There are so many main rooms and floors you have your pick when it comes to wedding breakfast location and dance floor area.

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If you head up a gorgeous wrought iron staircase you come out on the rooftop, overlooking south London. This is the perfect place for sunset portraits – something I think is a must for your big day!

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This is the venue for you if you’re a bride who loves colour, quirky props, mismatched furniture and a sense of untouched industrial charm.

I personally loved this venue because the sense of fun that came off it. It is also a good blank canvas, but ready and waiting with props to use as wanted. There are so many things you could do with this space – I’ve seen so many different setups at this venue, each wedding is completely unique. For me, the portrait opportunities are endless – the peacock chairs in the conservatory, the coloured abstract walls, the rooftop – all make for fantastic couples backdrops. Group shots would also be fantastic here with plenty of room both indoors and outdoors.

If you’re getting married here do get in touch – I would love to shoot your wedding, or can even offer friendly advice on making the most of this quirky venue!

Capacity: 120 dining, 250 standing

Venue address:  One friendly Place, London, SE13 7LS (A few minutes walk from Deptford Bridge station)

To book: Contact Steph or visit the website

Caroline x

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London Engagement Shoot: Cassy & Declan in Greenwich

 

A brunette couple on their engagement shoot in Greenwich Park LondonBack in the autumn, I gave away an engagement shoot on my Instagram account, and my lovely winners were Declan and Cassy. 

We met in the late afternoon at the Cutty Sark, with the aim to take advantage of the beautiful soft pre-sunset light. Taking a chilled walk through the Naval College and up to Greenwich Park, I remembered how stunning Greenwich is for an pre wedding photo shoot! I love the grand and old architecture – it provides so many interesting lines, shapes and backdrops. The park in October was also filled with fallen burnt orange leaves – my favourite.

Cassy and Declan were an absolute delight to photograph. So natural around each other and I had a great afternoon hearing about their relationship and plans for the wedding so far.

 

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Expect more engagement photography posts coming up over the next few months as my engagement season starts in March! Can’t wait to be photographing couples again after a winter break!

To book an engagement shoot with me, or your wedding please get in touch! I would love to hear from you.

Caroline x

London Wedding Photographer: Alternative London Venues – The Depot N7

Large lettering lights at the Depot wedding venue

Last week, I exhibited at the Depot N7’s Crystal Maze Wedding Fair. The venue is an industrial style pub in a cute Mews near Caledonian Road – perfect for a reception if you are having an Islington or Stoke Newington Town Hall wedding!

An old bus depot warehouse, I loved it immediately – the space has so much potential, with different areas for everything. Next to the bar, theres a large wedding breakfast space with long benches for a rustic setup. Theres also an upstairs area which is a fab location for a dance floor, and a chill out zone with comfy leather sofas. The cobbled outdoor area also has benches outside, and lots of potential spots for great portraits.

For the Wedding Fair, the venue was setup with huge LED Letters, fairy lights everywhere, and lovely eucalyptus leaves.  I loved the foliage spread across the length of the benches, complete with pastel pink and white flowers in jars, and lovely muted stationary by Harry Says.

Vegan wedding starter with pitta bread

The fair itself was great fun. I met some wonderful suppliers, old and new and got to chat to lots of excited couples planning their big day.  At the end of the day we were treated to the taster menu with corresponding wine tasting which was a real highlight. I went for the vegan menu option, which in itself was great – I don’t know many venues with vegan options yet. Happy to say it was delicious! If you fancied extra dessert, Caked by Carissa was offering out bitesize portions of her delicious wedding cakes, and Sugar Tits London had a feature doughnut wall (such a great idea). I was also won over by the wedding themed ales!

Pink doughnuts on a wall with edible pink flowers

If the space itself didn’t sell you, theres also a Crystal Maze immersive theatre experience.. how many weddings have that? Sadly I didn’t get the chance to give it a whirl, but we did get our own little taster of some magic amongst chatting to couples visiting the fair.

Magician wearing a green velvet jacket doing tricks

I’m super excited to be on The Depot’s list of recommend suppliers, and because I loved this venue so much, I’m offering a 10% discount to any couple who books a wedding with me at this location in 2018 or 2019.

Venue address: 1, Carpenters Mews, North Road, Islington, London N7 9EF (a few minutes walk from Caledonian Tube Station).

Get in touch to book

Caroline x