NATALIE & JAMES | ELVETHAM HOTEL WEDDING
Hartley Wintney Wedding Venue
Natalie and James have become more like friends than clients as we just have so much in common! They have such an openness about them and an adventurous spirit. This girl swims with sharks!!! Their wedding was on 5th January at the Elvetham Hotel between Fleet and Hartley Wintney and they are currently exploring the wilderness of Iceland on their honeymoon and I’m not even a little bit jealous (totally jealous!) but I literally cannot wait to hear all about their trip!
The Elvetham Hotel is a great wedding venue and is especially well suited to Winter weddings with it’s roaring fires and atmospheric interior. Don’t even get me started on the ceilings! It has everything you need, including a crew of people who are there to make sure your day goes off without a murmur of trouble! And most importantly there’s a chap or chapess who will literally go everywhere with you during the reception drinks to make sure you have canapes and a little tipple to keep you going. I mean they even wander around with us whilst we do the portraits. Not in a creepy way…..it’s fabulous!
I arrived early. Came in to a massive bear hug from Nat who was in the middle of getting her hair done by the wonderful Michelle Crosser!! The bridal prep was super chilled because Nat is one of the most laid back people you’ll meet. So the atmosphere was full of excitement and zero stress!
Wedding Venue: The Elvetham Hotel, Fleet
Wedding Hair: Michelle Crosser from Bridal Hair in Hampshire
Band: The Indie Killers
Drone Operator: David from DK Drones
Once she was ready I took the opportunity to capture a few bridal portraits as she looked sooooo beautiful and the window light in the Seymour room is divine, even on a cloudy day.
Nat’s dad hadn’t yet seen the wedding dress and so we did a great reveal shot and his expression was off the charts wonderful!! This was an important moment so I put a little time into getting them in the best light. Nat’s sister lead Dad in, hand over his eyes and then this happened…..
Heart -> MELT!
I am a total sucker for the daddy daughter moments at weddings!
A part of the day that the bride doesn’t get to see and is sometimes overlooked when thinking about what images you’d like is the ‘Groom Prep’. I think there are some great opportunities for photos here. Your H2B will have his tribe around him too so there are great exchanges to be captured and the prep shots are great for storytelling!
There was an air of anticipation in the ceremony room as we waited for the bridal party to arrive and James’ face as he waited for his bride was priceless!
I honestly don’t think I’ve ever been part of a ceremony that comprised over 50% of laughter! It was aces! James’ middle name seemed to provoke absolute roaring laughter every time it was uttered. Now I don’t know how many weddings you’ve attended? But the grooms name is repeated more than half a dozen times and every single mention brought the house down! It was hilarious!
One of my previous clients who has become a friend has just launched a Drone Company called DK Drones so he popped along to get some footage for Nat and James on their wedding day. If you’d like to see that the details are at the end of the post.
I always suggest to the couple that immediately after the ceremony they should run and hide for a few minutes. The reasoning is two fold. Firstly they can take advantage of a few moments away from the madding crowd, just the two of them. Secondly, and less altruistically, it means I can arrange the confetti line outside for them to exit into and get great shots! James took a few right in the face! Eeek! Right after the confetti the couple wanted to go straight into the group photo sets as it’s January and January…traditionally…is f-f-f-f-ffreezey!
I think it’s important to have a giggle when running through the group photos so they feel like a part of the day to be enjoyed and not a chore.
After warming ourselves by the fire and having a mingle the couple began their receiving line which is a great way to ensure you say Hi and thanks for coming to each guest but isn’t for everyone as it does have a more formal feel to it. It’s great opp for me to get some wonderful exchanges and funny moments as are the speeches…
One of my faveouite parts of the day is the after party, when every one has filled their bellies and their hearts, the ‘formal’ bits are done and it’s time to relax and let your hair down and these guys picked the right band for the job! The Indie Killers have played a few weddings that I’ve covered and they never fail to knock your socks off!
If you’re looking for a Hampshire wedding photographer then drop me a line, I’d love to hear from you!