I returned to the Folkestone seafront (granted, it's only a 5 minute drive!) for Mandy and Mark's big day late in September. The girls were calm and collected as they got ready at The Clifton Hotel across the road from the venue, and Mandy looked stunning in her dress before joining Mark at the Channel Suite in the Leas Cliff Hall. We were blessed with sunshine and amazing late summer light for the ceremony and group/couples photos back up top, before heading down for the meal and to party! They had a huge long list of guests attending in the evening, and they all wanted to jump in for a photo as the drinks flowed. Their first dance was a lovely slow number, and their smiles really lit up the dance floor as their friends and family came to join them.
After the huge success of the last styled wedding shoot at Nurstead Court, a few of the other key suppliers started organising a St Clements styled bridal shoot at another lovely venue in Kent. This newly renovated barn style venue will soon be hosting weddings and events, and we wanted to capitalise on the space before it inevitably became booked up! Bringing in splashes of colour to this September day, along with Lea, our lovely model and a visit from a gorgeous retro VW campervan too, we were set for another great styled shoot. It was a pretty full on day, and everyone worked their socks off to make the most of the indoor and outdoor spaces, with two different dresses and looks - including a relaxed boho style and a more traditional dress with lace detailing and veil.
After the success of my photoshoot with Rusty the golden retriever puppy, I formally launched my pet pawtrait mini sessions. It wasn't long before Christie got in touch with me to arrange one for her adorable liver-spotted dalmatian, Nora. I suggested Hothfield Common, near Ashford, as it was both local to Christie and a great open space often used by dog walkers. With the summer now coming to a close, we had some great colours on display, including the pinks and purples of the heather coming out. This was the perfect backdrop for some lovely photos of Nora, both on her own, and with Christie and her partner Paul in some almost Christmas card worthy poses! Once we got Nora to sit still, of course.
I headed up to Thanet in mid August for Stephanie and James' wedding. A part of Kent I haven't been to for a few years now but it has some really lovely tucked away places. Even the registry office for the ceremony had a lovely overgrown Victorian charm to it! It was great to see so many of Stephanie's French family over for the wedding, even the language barrier didn't pose too much of a problem! We then headed to a nearby park for the group and couples photos before heading to The Yarrow hotel in Broadstairs for the reception dinner. After a while mingling, the wedding coordinator took us outside to the small gazebo for some last minute photos before I left the happy couple and their guests to enjoy the rest of their evening.
I first met Mandy and Mark at a wedding fair earlier in the year, and they were lucky enough to win 50% off their full day wedding photography too! I'm always keen to encourage pre-wedding sessions before the wedding, especially if people are a little uneasy or not used to being in front of the camera. It's always an added bonus if this happens during golden hour too! We were blessed with some lovely light along the Leas in Folkestone, before we headed down the famed zigzag path to the coastal park and finally the beach for some really dramatic shots as the sun set. Mandy and Mark were great fun to photograph and soon got into the swing of things. It's great to know they'll be more relaxed on their wedding day now!
It's been some time since I was involved in a big styled shoot, as they can be difficult to organise and find suitable suppliers for, so I was particularly excited when everyone came together for this epic full day at the gorgeous Nurstead Court near Meopham in Kent. This was a real collaborative effort and the other suppliers played a key role in making this all come together. We had the lovely Petra Ashby as our bride for the day, modelling three different dresses to create distinct looks, all with their own details and flowers. Later in the afternoon her partner arrived for those perfect couples photos just as the sun was setting. This was a great day and the chance to work with some very talented people. The English Wedding Blog has also featured this shoot as inspiration for an English country house wedding!
I headed up to Judds Folly on the outskirts of Faversham on another very warm summer's day for Kelly & Stuart's wedding back in July. They were definitely embracing the sunshine with the plethora of sunflowers in their decor and details! This is my first time at Judd's Folly and I was really impressed by the staff, food and the venue as a whole - a real hidden gem! Kelly and Stuart were stars too, of course, totally chilled and I had a great time getting some gorgeous photos of the two of them, as well as all the super fun shots getting involved with their friends and family during the day. This was the last of my July 2018 weddings and a great way to round off a busy month! What a fantastic day, and I'm sure the party continued well into the evening after I had left.
Kim is one of my oldest friends and I've known her since secondary school. In fact she was part of the inspiration for me pursuing a photography career. She also has a special place in her heart for dogs, and when the reality of getting a puppy turned into bringing home Rusty, she was quick to suggest a photo session with the playful golden retriever! Animals (especially quick ones) was a new genre for me at the time but I have since launched my pet pawtrait mini sessions after the success of our time down the Folkestone Warren at sunset, together with Kim and her partner Jamie. I don't have a dog myself but I can see why so many people are just head over heels in love with them!
After the fun I had photographing Jenny and Ben's pre-wedding session earlier in the year, I was really excited to be getting together with them again for their Essex wedding in July! I was instantly made to feel welcome and captured some lovely photos of Jenny getting ready while my second photographer covered the groom in the morning. We then all headed to Warley Park Golf Club, where Ben works, for the wedding. Thankfully it was a bit cooler than it had been and everyone was in high spirits! Jenny and Ben both looked fantastic on the day and we made the most of the grounds during TWO couples sessions, before heading back inside to party with a country dancing style Cèilidh band to boogie the night away. What a fantastic wedding these two had! I was assisted through the day by Rebecca Watts.
In early July I headed up to North Kent and the small village of Hoo for the gorgeously sunny wedding of Anna and Sam. They got married in the lovely church of St Werburgh before I stole them both away for some romantic photos of the two of them in the neighbouring fields with the sun beating down. We then headed down into Medway to Lordswood Leisure Centre for the reception, which had been given a touch of sparkle for the newlyweds. A few cheeky shots and a hogroast later, everyone was pulling shapes on the dancefloor - but the kids were the real stars of the show! Putting on their own performance for Anna and Sam. A great day in the sunshine and such fun to be a part of.