ROMSEY ABBEY WEDDING
Chelsea and Adam celebrated in relaxed style with their closest friends and family
If you’re having a Romsey Abbey wedding then have a scroll through these to find out just how beautiful a place it really is.
I was warmly welcomed into the Chelsea’s parents home. Instantly I felt as though I had known them for years. After a big hug with the B2b and a quick catch up, I left Chelsea to get ready and set about shooting the details; the gown, shoes, jewellery and flowers etc. Chelsea’s dad Ken had bought sooo many pots of lovely blossoming flowers for the garden in case I had wanted to use it to photograph the details. How very thoughtful! So…obviously…I couldn’t resist that!
Biggest Compliment Ever!
After half an hour or so, bridesmaid Laura asked how long Chelsea and I had been friends. Best compliment EVER! We had met for the initial meeting and had an engagement shoot. That’s all! So this was testimony to how comfortable lovely Chelsea felt with me! Which is the best thing I can hope for in my work!
The Getting Ready Bit
I generally only start shooting bridal prep shots once the bride has the majority of her makeup on because we all want to look our best in the photos on the wedding day. I keep my photos natural and more ‘fly on the wall’ unless, of course, I get a wicked shot of the bride pulling an hilariously funny face at me! Obvs! These shots are designed to capture the nervous anticipation and excitement of the wedding morning and are a beautiful record encapsulating how you felt at that precise moment in time.
The Abbey, oh the Abbey!! My heart! What an incredible place to make your vows to one another! The stone work, the space and the beautiful, beautiful light!!!
I am so in love with the images from this wedding it’s actually mental! There are a few things to consider especially with weddings in religious buildings, however…
TOP TIP 1 | CHECK OUT THE PARKING SITUATION
Parking at the Abbey can be super difficult so make sure you scope out close by alternatives and let guests know when you send out all the wedding information. You will also need to let your photographer know as we have pretty limited time to get in and get snapping your guests and the venue, before you arrive 😉
TOP TIP 2 | SPEAK TO YOUR MINISTER
Some ministers can be super prescriptive about what the photographer can and cannot do. This is usually because they have had bad experiences of photographers who didn’t respect the sanctity of the wedding ceremony. This can affect where we can stand, whether or not we can use flash and if we’re allowed to move at all. Sometimes I’ve been told to stand way, way at the back and not move which inevitably limits the shots that can be achieved. This usually results in no shots of the couples expressions. So it’s worth you chatting with your minister to find out exactly what’s not allowed so you can manage your expectations about what photos you’ll get.
TOP TIP 3 | THINK ABOUT THE LIGHT
Light is what makes a photo so natural light is vital for the most beautiful images. Artificial light is flat and changes the colour of the skin tones. Flash can clear this up and add some dimension to the photos but flash is rarely permitted in churches and abbeys. So when you visit your prospective venues make sure there is a good bit of natural window light, especially falling on the spot where you and your beau will be standing.
Pretty Special Light
Luckily the Abbey is crazy beautiful with a powerful, dramatic light that floods right on to the couple and it poses a strong interior which is aces for great photos!
The photographer is not allowed up in front of the couple and the minister initially asked me to stand at the back. However, I reassured him that I would be super respectful so he permitted me to stand to the side of the couple and I managed to get shots of both the bride and grooms expressions. It’s so important for us photographers to make friends with your ministers so we can get the best possible images for you 😉
Some ministers are a little stuffy but this chap was quite relaxed during the ceremony and there were few giggles from the couple and guests.
After the ceremony
I always ask the couple to, literally, run and hide so they get a few moments just the two of them. But also, because they are out of sight, I can arrange the confetti line super quickly for them to explode out in to!
Now the sun can be challenging and to get the best photos, sometimes you have to do things backwards depending on where it is in the sky! I asked the couple to walk around the back of the confetti line and come back up the middle so I could keep the sun behind them and the light soft on their faces. It didn’t take anything away from the excitement and joy of the confetti line and we got some gorgeous shots!
The Group Photos
I always allow some time for the guests to say hello and squeeze the couple with congratulations and with the couples agreement, I usually go straight into the group photos so we can get them done early on. This means that people can then relax for the rest of the day.
My couples get their group photo list to me well ahead of the day so I can arrange it in a way that flows quickly. I am also sensitive to elderly family members who may not be able to stand for too long or be in the cold so I will always do those sets first so they are free to go after a few minutes.
For Chelsea and Adam there was quite a list of group photos to get through. So I started big and then let people know, as we went along, that they could scoot off to the venue and get drinks and nibbles ahead of the couples arrival.
Bride and Groom
Chelsea asked for a few couples portraits inside the Abbey and I was MORE than happy to oblige. On arrival I caught the couple for a few photos with the GORGEOUS car before he needed to head off. Make the most of the lovely car you’ve hired for the day, plan in some time for photos with it early on.
TOP TIP 4 | COMMUNICATE YOUR WISHES TO YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER
Some couples like to be there first to greet their guests but this can be logistically quite difficult. Not impossible though, just liaise with your photographer so they can make it happen as you want it to. This is your vision and your day so just express your wishes and it’s our job to realise them for you.
Meanwhile, back at the bar…
Once everyone has arrived at the venue, everything feels much more relaxed for your guests. This is why it’s great to get any group photos done as early as possible so all the ‘formally’ bits are done. After that it’s just about capturing those real natural shots during speeches and the evening reception. And at this wedding, I got some corkers!
Romantic Sunset Couples Photos
The sun was setting and the light became quite magical after the speeches so I put it to Chelsea and Adam that we take a quick ten mins out to get some golden hour photos. Most couples are happy to grab a quick breather so they get some time together.
I never push this but if anyone every said no to this (which they have yet to do) then I would always ask “Are you sure you won’t regret it tomorrow?” just to be sure. These shots are something different to the earlier ones. They have more of a relaxed feel to them and the couple feel totally at ease. I mean, that might have something to do with the champagne that’s happened by that point.
Rounding things off nicely…
After a quick breather these guy got back to their guests with a renewed energy having had some time out together. The party got started early with the first dance and I had a funny feeling that these guys and their guests were going to have an absolutely fantastic night!
Shout Outs To…
Wedding Venue: Romsey Abbey, Romsey www.romseyabbey.org.uk
Reception Venue: The Bell Inn, Brook www.bellinn-newforest.co.uk
Dress: Fox Bridal from Romsey Bridal www.romseybridal.co.uk
Florist: Emma’s Flower Hut www.emmasflowerhut.co.uk
Suits: Moss Bros www.moss.co.uk
Ties and pocket squares: Swagger & Swoon www.swaggerandswoon.com
Band: Ed Martin Duo www.theedmartinduo.co.uk