DIY Wedding Photography

DIY wedding set up

My favourite kind of wedding to photograph is a creative DIY wedding. I love watching the wedding party transform a blank canvas into the bride and grooms dream.

With many talented hands on deck, I’ve seen some wonderfully personal weddings come together, with so much thought, creativity and love. (not forgetting a bit of sweat and tears!)

I love it when a couple takes the traditional frame work of a wedding and makes it their own. From festival weddings, to comic book themed tea parties!

Some brides choose to make their own wedding dresses as the talented Natalie did! (where do you start?!)

Others let their musicians fancy dress take centre stage!

I asked a few of my DIY wedding couples for their advice on how to plan and execute a DIY wedding, they had some great pointers;

  • Delegate! See what talent you have amongst your friends and family that you can utilise and ask them if they would be willing to contribute to making your day special. Only ask for a small offerings but generally people love to help and be part of your big day

  • Make friends with spreadsheets! And get organised, set a budget, theme and time line.

  • Start early, the things you think will be quick to make the week before the wedding will end up keeping you up all night for a week!

  • Borrow and rent what you don’t need to buy. This is a good money saver and good for your environmental conscience :)

  • Get creative- up-cycle, customise, collect.

  • Stay true to yourself

  • Make sure you spend some time with your fiancé NOT planning your wedding from time to time for your sanity ;)

  • Have fun! It’s your wedding day after all.


Check out some of my favourite DIY weddings here and here, they may just give you some inspiration for yours! And please do get in touch should you wish to discuss your DIY wedding photography.

Splotts Moor Farm Wedding, Somerset

SplottsMoorFarm_05.jpg

In August I worked alongside the wonderful Emma Stoner as her second shooter for the beautiful wedding of Jenny and Gavin. They were married at the St John the Baptist’s Church in Pilton, and went on to celebrate at Splotts Moor Farm in Somerset.

Guests enjoyed a drinks reception in the shady orchard (it was a scorcher of a day!) with a view of Glastonbury Tor before moving through to the custom built timber marquee which they had colourfully decorated with lanterns, sunflowers and photos.

It is always a joy to second shoot and have the time (and slightly less pressure!) to find the special moments, different angles and creative shots. Here is a selection of my images from Jenny and Gavin’e wedding, and you can also view Emma’s website here





Cadhay House Wedding, Devon // Sara and Tom

Tom and Sara got married in the grounds of Cadhay House in Devon, in the most beautiful garden ceremony set beside a lake. Tom and Sara live in Singapore and had already had a small legal ceremony in Singapore, but they considered this to be their main event! The ceremony was conducted by the grooms brother in law, who being a vicar was a total pro!

Following the ceremony they enjoyed drinks and canapés on the lawn to the sounds of Skedaddle as the guests meandered around the lake and grounds. I also took this opportunity to explore the beautiful secret gardens with Tom and Sara.

The guests then moved through to a large marque in another part of the garden for a BBQ feast and hilarious speeches. As the light started to fade and the temperature dropped the fire pit them became a popular spot, especially when someone whipped out the marshmallows!

This was one of my favourite wedding of the summer, a gorgeous super chilled couple, fun and friendly family and friends and the most beautiful wedding venue to take pictures in! Magic combo!

Venue : http://cadhay.org.uk

Furniture and prop hire: www.virginiasvintagehire.co.uk 

Music: https://skedaddle1.bandcamp.com/releases

Llyn Gwynant Wedding // Charlotte and Matt

Matt and Charlotte got married at Llyn Gwynant Barns which lies in the most beautiful valley in North Wales at the foot of Snowdon.

This was a full weekend affair and guests arrived the night before to camp, swim in the lake, set up and be merry!

The humanist ceremony, performed by Matt’s brother was held outside in the private gardens in a magical spot overlooking the lake. It was so personal and creative with readings from close family and their own personal vows.

The ceremony was followed by a drinks reception and hilarious games by the lake. Guests then moved into the barns for a BBQ dinner and some fab speeches.

Shortly after dinner (and a dip in the lake) the tables were cleared and the dance floor filled, just in time for the big surprise fo the night! A (welsh) Mariachi Band! Matt and Charlotte’s wedding seriously rocked!

Copeland Gallery London Wedding // Camilla and Andy

CopelandGallery.jpg

It was a true honour to photograph my friends' Mills and Andy's wedding at the Copeland Gallery in Peckham, London. 

The Copeland Gallery is essentially a big- blank canvas- warehouse space, and with their creative eye and a team of friends and family, set it up to be a super-stylish wedding venue. 

Camilla and Andy had an intimate ceremony conducted by a family vicar. They were blessed with remarkably good weather for mid-April and enjoyed canapés and bubbles in the courtyard.  We took informal and relaxed couple portraits around the Bussey building before they heading inside for dinner, hilarious speeches and a rocking party! 

Congratulations Mills and Andy you beautiful pair xxx

Snowy London Wedding // Hsu and James

LondonWedding.jpg

Hsu and James got married on the 3rd March, the anniversary of their first date. This was clearly a special date for them, and when planning their spring wedding they never could have anticipated that the beast from the east would hit the UK bringing snow storms, freezing temperatures and causing havoc across the country! 

IMG_4091.JPG

At home in Somerset on the Friday I was completely snowed in! The trains were cancelled and only 4x4's were chancing the snowy roads. I was getting nervous! In the end I hitch hiked to Bath with some lovely police ladies and made a train to London in good time for the wedding. Phew! 

With a few guests sadly unable to attend the show went on! And what a fun wedding it was. This was wedding part 2 of 3! James and Hsu were legally married in the week with close family. The second part of the wedding trio was an intimate celebration at Forth Floor Studios in London with a blessing ceremony conducted by a close friend, followed by a mad hatter style tea party with cocktails in tea pots and dancing into the night! It was a joy to photograph such a creative and personal wedding celebration with a couple who have so much fun together and are clearly so right for each other. 

And they still have one more wedding to go! 

London Jewish Wedding // Miriam and Stephen

AW_MiriamandStephen_0672.jpg

Mariam and Stephen’s Orthodox Jewish wedding was held in London at the Jewish Learning Exchange on the 11th February. This was the first Jewish wedding I had attended and it was wonderful to photograph a day so rich in culture, history and celebration. 

Mariam and Stephen had an adventurous spirit and we had lots of fun outside shooting natural couple portraits around Hampstead Heath until it was completely dark!  

The evening concluded with dinner and LOTS of dancing!! What a fun day to be part of. 

London Winter Wedding // Aisling and Eoghan

AW_AislingandEoghan_221.jpg

Eoghan and Aisling LOVE Christmas and got married on the 9th December in London when festivities were certainly in the air. The church ceremony was held at St Etheldreda's Church, a beautiful and historic Roman Catholic Church in the heart of Clerkenwell. They then continued their laid back celebrations with mulled wine and a buffet at The Edward Liar in Holloway. The wedding car conveniently passed the Arsenal stadium (Eoghan is a big fan) and much to his delight there was time to hop out for a few photos! 

Camden Wedding // Kate and Mike

AW_KateandMike_101.jpg

Kate and Mike celebrated their wedding in true London style in iconic Camden. The ceremony was held at Camden Town Hall where Kate lit up the room with her amazing 50's style dress and flashing shoes! They then hopped on a double-decker party bus to their reception at The Prince Albert. 

The Aperol Spritz was flowing and the day was effortlessly relaxed. Kate and Mike certainly knew how to throw a great party! 

Lambeth Palace Wedding // Ailsa and Simon

AW_SimonandAilsa_540.jpg

This was a very last minute booking, Simon and Ailsa had sadly been let down by their photographer but when I heard about their weddings plans, a ceremony at Lambeth Palace officiated but the Archbishop of Canterbury, I was very happy to step in and take the job!

The ceremony was held in the atmospheric crypt with beautiful classical music accompanying the hymns and service. They then moved upstairs for a drinks reception in the State Room where the Archbishop and the bride's 12-year-old son gave witty speeches, along with the groom and groom's sons. 

Drinks and canapés were served by Fwd:Events

Recommended Supplier // Bespoke Chalkboards

image2.jpeg

As you can imagine I get to meet a huge range of outstanding wedding suppliers, and I would like to start sharing my favorites with you here. 

4.jpg

Cath Siswick creates beautifully handcrafted bespoke chalkboards that are unique and personal to each couple. From signage and table plans to personalised love stories, they are works of art that can be cherished long after the wedding day. 

For more details visit her website http://bespokechalkboards.co.uk/ or email Cath enquiries@bespokechalkboards.co.uk 

Hawthbush Farm Wedding // Tom and Katie

AW_BloomandSchwarz_17.jpg

It was a huge honour to be asked to photograph my friends Katie and Tom's wedding at Hawthbush Farm in East Sussex. They took over the whole farm and created a very personal and magical wedding. I don't mean to blow my own trumpet, but this couple has some very talented friends! And this was a wonderful collaboration of skills. From the flowers, the decorating, hair and makeup, wedding blessing, game making to Polaroid taking, BBQing, DJing - it was all done by friends. And not to forget the mother of the groom who made Tom's waistcoat, the cake, bunting, the list was endless! It was an amazing day and a very special wedding to be part of! Huge love to S&B xxx

Goodbye London

AW_Helen&Simon_0804 (1).jpg

I came to London 9 years ago as a fresh photography graduate in search of a photography career. And after a lot of free labour, interning, assisting and hard graft, I got there! It has been an incredible journey following my passion, and I am proud to be making a living doing what I love. 

I have loved photographing weddings in iconic and quirky venues across London such as Borough Market (Above)

Southwark Cathedral

Southwark Cathedral

AW_BastyandMonika_0322.jpg
Islington Town Hall 

Islington Town Hall 

Stoke Newington Reserviour

Stoke Newington Reserviour

Stoke Newington Town Hall 

Stoke Newington Town Hall 

The Londesborough, Stoke Newington

The Londesborough, Stoke Newington

Dartmouth House, Mayfair

Dartmouth House, Mayfair

Beaufort House Chelsea, Kings Road  

Beaufort House Chelsea, Kings Road
 

AW_GwenandMatt_331.jpg
Hotel Du Vin, Cannizaro House, Wimbledon

Hotel Du Vin, Cannizaro House, Wimbledon

Dinner by Heston Blummenthal, Knightsbridge

Dinner by Heston Blummenthal, Knightsbridge

The Easton, Clerkenwell

The Easton, Clerkenwell

Merchant Taylors Hall, Threadneedle Street

Merchant Taylors Hall, Threadneedle Street

But its time to return to my west county routes and start a new adventure. I am looking forward to photographing the beautiful green landscape, weddings in fields and all that county bliss! 

Destination Wedding

As a guest! (even better!)

Having attended many weddings as a photographer it is always a treat to be a wedding guest and witness close friends make their vows and celebrate their love. On this occasion, I was also honoured to be a bridesmaid. But I still can't help myself bringing a camera and taking pictures throughout the day! A rural Italian setting with beautiful friends is a photographers dream after all!