I can still remember my first conversation with Australian bride Jess back in 2018, when she rang to enquire about us photographing their wedding in August 2019. We had a lovely chat, and she told me how worried she was about being photographed for a day, and the centre of attention.
I told her not to worry, as I knew from years of experience, that as long as Jess and Peter could have a relaxed, fun day, we could look after getting the shots. We spent some time with them both in the run-up to their big day to get to know them better, and understand the kind of wedding they were planning.
When the day came last summer, I no longer felt like I had a ‘camera shy’ bride in front of me! On the contrary, Jess and Peter went the extra mile in giving us time to get a cracking set of shots – including some wonderful ‘last light’ photographs, taken at sunset around the stunning grounds of Whatley Manor, just after their first dance!
I caught up with Jess to ask her a few questions about why they chose Whatley Manor as their venue, and how the day went for them. Read on!
Why did you choose Whatley Manor as your wedding venue?
“Whatley Manor was the place Peter whisked me off to for the weekend after proposing to me the previous evening, closer to our home. Being from Australia, I knew I wanted to get married somewhere mutually special to us and this was perfect!
Were you nervous about being photographed?
We knew from discussions with the staff at Whatley that Jo and Nic photographed many weddings there and I decided to get in touch with them about photographing our day. I don’t like being photographed and was a bit reluctant to have many photographs on our day – I remember saying to Jo during our initial phone call that if I just had one photo of Pete and me standing next to each other then that would be enough!
Jo was amazing during the lead up to the wedding despite my hesitations about being photographed; she and Nic spent so much time getting to know us both, as well as planning the photos and understanding what we wanted.
On the day, Jo and Nic fitted right in and it was hard to tell they were even taking photographs! During the couple and preparation photographs, none of the shots felt forced or unnatural and they really captured how happy we both were!
Were there any particularly emotional, memorable moments for you?
One of my most memorable moments was when I saw my Dad for the first time in my dress and walking down the aisle with him. The other was seeing Pete at the end of the aisle after all our planning and preparations looking so happy!
I felt very lucky to be able to enjoy the lead-up and the day itself with my parents and siblings who had all travelled from so far away – it meant the world to us that they and other friends and family had made the journey from Australia to be there. It was the most incredible feeling to be surrounded by so much love and support and we couldn’t have asked for more wonderful people to have shared our day with!
What about the styling/colours/themes for your day?
We tied in references to our home towns of London and Sydney throughout the day and the cities around the world we have travelled together were our table names.
The feature of my bouquet and in the flowers throughout the venue was eucalyptus, because it is native to Australia, as well as lots of white and pale pink flowers. I love Lord of the Rings so we made confetti cones from the pages of the books and walked back down the aisle together to the music from the films. My Mum designed a pair of beautiful earrings and a piece for my hair for the wedding day which was really special and it meant a lot to wear something she had made for me.
How did your day go, and is there anything you would change or do differently if you were getting married again?
The whole day was perfect for us – despite torrential rain the day before, the sun came out and we had a beautiful, relaxed, sunny day.
There’s nothing I would change – we were relaxed about timings and the way everything flowed; we didn’t care if things didn’t go the way we planned. It really made a difference because we just completely enjoyed every single minute of it!
Planning a wedding for 2020 or beyond and looking for photography? We’d love to hear from you, you can contact us here or feel free to call us on 07876344866 for a chat.
Venue: Whatley Manor Hotel and Spa: https://www.whatleymanor.com/
Flowers – Jill Jeffries: http://www.jilljeffries.com/
Cake/food – by the amazing chefs at Whatley Manor
Hair & Makeup: Celfie hair and beauty: www.celfiehairandmakeup.co.uk
Jess’ dress: Pronovias https://www.pronovias.com/gb/
Jess’ shoes: Jimmy Choo https://www.jimmychoo.com/en/home
DJ: Cotswolds Discos: https://www.cotswolddiscos.co.uk/
Pete’s suit: Lipman & Sons: http://www.lipmanandsons.co.uk/