All posts by GAY WEDDING BLOG

TONY AND EMILY’S COSPLAY ENGAGEMENT SHOOT

This very original shot was sent by the photographer Nelly Naylor. Last winter she did a magical Beauty and The Beast shoot with Tony and Emily. 

On Saturday 16th December 2017, I created a fairytale adventure for one charming and very special couple. The photos were taken at Surprise View in the Sheffield Peak District as I felt it was very fitting for the couples miraculous Beauty and the Beast outfits. I also caught up with them to find out more about their adventures together so far and how they came to meet.

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When did you meet and how long have you been together?

We met in 2012 during Comic Con in London, we’ve enjoyed five enchanting years together but have been engaged for two. Tony proposed last Christmas!

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Wedding planning advice: Nineteen (!) reasons to book a professional DJ

Think you can sort out music for your wedding with an iPad and Spotify? Our friends from RedLine DJs will give you 19 reasons you should re-think it and get yourself a real DJ. 

Almost all soon-to-be-newlyweds have been there: you’ve been planning the wedding for months, if not years.
The cake’s been taste tested by the entire family, the dress has been fitted (three times), the canapés and wedding breakfast confirmed and your dad has already done the booze cruise to Calais (obviously you’ll have bought five times as much as you need, and will be drinking that bottle of ‘wedding day red’ until 2020). You’ve just about recovered from your stag or hen weekends, and virtually everything has been organised apart from one crucial thing: the music.

At this stage of the planning – with costs snowballing and budgets squeezed – one question is inevitable. Do you really need to spend money on a professional wedding DJ? We all know how to make a good party playlist on spotify, right?!

Wrong! Skimping on your dj is a fast-track to an empty dance floor, and here are some of the reasons why you should book a professional wedding dj.

  1. Weddings are a special day and they require specialists

You want your wedding day to be perfect in every single way.  It’s why you spend hours making sure your wedding breakfast menu is just right, rather than just asking your local chippy to supply some battered sausage and chips (nan would never approve).

Regardless of how much we love fish and chips, the point still stands – the best weddings are all about employing the best people to do each specialist job. Your DJ should be seen not just as the provider of music but also as your evening reception specialist – get the right one and your night will be one to remember, get the wrong one and it could be one to forget.  After all, no-one wants an accidental YMCA as their first dance.

  1. Professional DJs know how to build – and keep – a dancefloor

People like to think that being a DJ is easy. After all, isn’t it just playing good songs?! Not really. Everyone will have a story of a DJ that completely messed up that wedding, party, or club night.

DJing a wedding is a much harder job than it appears.  But the best DJs are able to pull together all of your song and genre requests and mix them in with the inevitable requests from your guests. They are able to use their experience to add their own selections, successfully keep a broad cross-section of people happy for the entire night and most importantly, they know how to build a dance floor and keep them there ‘til the very last bars of New York, New York.

  1. Professionals are invested in their own business, and you

The professional wedding DJ cares about their business – every single client is important to them because word-of-mouth both online and in person counts for everything. They are therefore highly motivated to provide a superior level of customer service and attention to detail to ensure that they are recommended and reviewed in glowing terms.

In the case of amateur DJs, the opposite is often true – you are likely to be dealing with someone without a business name, their own website and an online presence.  With so little motivation for them to treat you with the care you deserve, do you trust them to handle something as important as your wedding day?

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BEV & ALEX’S HEADINGTON HILL HALL WEDDING

Photographer Larissa Joice shared this lovely wedding in a gorgeous Headington Hill Hall with us. She also asked Bev and Alex to tell us more about their bog day. 

Tell us your story

We met through sport and mutual friends in Oxford. Alex proposed to me on a dog walk in South Park which is my favourite place in Oxford, and you can see it from where we eventually got married!
We were engaged for nearly 1.5 years and we’ve been together for nearly 7 years now. We had to wait a while to live together as Alex went back to Uni to do another degree, but we got there in the end! Once she got a job after uni we moved from Oxford to Birmingham, but went back to Oxford to get married!

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STYLED SHOOT: Spring wedding shoot

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Photographer Ross Willsher sent me his styled shoot that is full of juicy green and it made me think of spring, so thought it would be a great time to share it with you. Here’s what he wrote about it. 

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The shoot took place at Merrymeade House in Brentwood, Essex and was my own conception. I worked closely with Leanne (Perilly, MUA) and Danielle (Balcombe, EssexyHair) on the styling; we wanted something a little outside of the box without resorting to stereotypes (as a gay man myself, I am always looking into new ways of highlighting how wonderfully diverse same sex relationships and weddings can be).
We decided that by having two different looks for each bride, we could showcase how traditional wedding styles and more modern, alternative styling can both be embraced by same sex couples.
The majority of my shoots – both portraiture and weddings – incorporate nature and the  “great outdoors” as not only does this enable me to work with a diverse and ever-changing backdrop, it helps the people in front of the camera to relax and be themselves.
Danielle from Essexyhair embraced this natural and organic vibe by giving the ladies a “festival bride” look. The make-up by Leanne is bold without being overpowering and reflects the strong personalities of both women. This really helped to bring out Helene and Skye’s natural chemistry and confidence in front of the lens. We had fun playing around with different poses and camera angles to change the look and dynamic between the two models and create a story and sense of narrative as opposed to simply a series of individual shoots that didn’t work together cohesively.

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CLAIRE AND GEORGINA’S ART DECO WEDDING AT ELTHAM PALACE

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Something totally different today! Claire and Georgina got married in gorgeous Eltham Palace. Thanks to Jeff Oliver Photography team for sharing it with us.

HOW DID YOU MEET?

We both work in the food industry which is pretty small, you will always know someone that knows someone, and in fact Georgina was one of Claire’s customers. In our case Claire was working at a company producing sauces, dressings and chutney for both food manufacturing & retail businesses. Back in April 2009 Georgina joined the company and our eyes met over a chutney pan…. We had our first date within 10 days of meeting and the rest, as they say, is history.

After a few months of dating Claire moved to London for work in September 2009, but we stayed strong & Georgina followed in January 2010 when we moved in together.

By 2014 we had brought our first house in South East London & Georgina proposed in front of the Greenwich Royal Naval Collage in January 2015

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LUCY AND VICTORIA’S OUTDOOR LAKESIDE WEDDING

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What a lovely summery week we are having here on the blog – today it’s more nature, lakeside, lovely DIY details, gorgeous brides and dogs!

This wedding was shared by Lucy and Victoeia’s photographer Becky Harley.

TELL US ABOUT THE DAY! WHAT WAS THE THEME, INSPIRATION, THE MOST IMPORTANT AND MOST FUN PART FOR YOU?

We had a floral/ Hessian and Lace theme. Think vintage tea party in the country! The ceremony was outside, in front of the lake which was very important to us. We made a lot of our decorations including centre pieces, favors, bouquets, hanging baskets and planted up teapots for the outside tables! Our 3 Border collie dogs, Lexi, Maggie and Molly were part of our bridal party, dressed up in their floral bow ties! Lexi was also the ring bearer, carrying a ring cushion on her back. We hired a camping field for our guests to stay in, and we spent our wedding night in a yurt on the edge of our own secluded pond. We were really keen to put on a relaxed, fun day so we could really enjoy spending the time celebrating with all our nearest and dearest – and we certainly got that.

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We were so lucky to have so many friends and family members who helped out with our special day, which made it that bit more personal. Our bridesmaid dresses were lovingly made by Victoria’s sister, Rebecca Salt, bespoke to each bridesmaids size and with multi-way ties to suit their own individual style.
All wedding stationary was made by our brother in-law Stephan Salt’s design company ‘Just Add Salt’. He was so patient with us and made all our ideas come to life better than we could have hoped.

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AMY AND LOUISE’S BRIDGE HOUSE BARN TIPI WEDDING

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Amy and Louise got married at the Bridge House Barn in the heart of the beautiful Leicestershire countryside. Tipis, DIY decorations, gorgeous nature around and doggies with bow ties – what not to love! 

Read what Amy told us about their big day.

HOW DID YOU MEET?

We met via mutual friends in London. Both of us had recently separated from ex partners and despite some hesitation, friends convinced us to go to London for a break. Little did we know we would each meet the love of our lives.

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TELL US ABOUT THE DAY

We had two ceremonies and two receptions! Greedy I know! The legal part… that was done in South Wales, where I’m from, in a registry office in a little town called Bridgend on the 30.09.2017. We had the reception in my parents back garden and my Mum’s best friend cooked us a huge BBQ. We spent the evening singing, listening to music and drinking in their summer house and under the gazebos.

The ceremony & reception were at Bridge Hose Barn (Kibworth Harcourt, Market Harborough in the Leicestershire countryside) we were in the open air during the ceremony and in a huge tipi as the day went on.

It’s a DIY venue, where pretty much most things are acceptable (within reason). It’s set in the Leicestershire countryside. The venue is made up of two fields and is set alongside a beautiful canal overlooking two locks. There is camping on site (in the adjacent field to the ceremony), electricity, and a shower with plenty of parking. The venue provides posh portable toilets and has their own 3 top hat tipi with benches and tables, lots of props, bales of hay and fully stocked bar. There is also a very handy 3 bedroom B&B / Apartment / Honeymoon Suite attached to the field. We cannot recommend this venue enough, the owners are amazing and nothing was too much trouble.

 

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So the wedding nearly didn’t happen… it was due to take place May 2017 but 6 weeks before the date, my mum had an accident which left her laid up in hospital for 7 weeks. Thankfully she managed to walk again and we were able to re-arrange the wedding for October 2017.

One of the most important things for us was that all our close family and friends were there so we knew we had to cancel in May and re-arrange when everyone could be there. We are so fortunate to have amazing friends and family who mean so much to us.

We wanted our wedding to represent us! We wanted something fun, relaxed, informal and homemade. We also wanted to make sure guests were well fed and watered! We had always had visions of having the wedding ceremony in the open air and under a tree. I love trees, they remind me of laying down roots, growth, strength and rejuvenation).

We arrived the venue to set up the day before. We roped in family and friends to help dress the venue. My Dad had spent two years making decorations, games, props and signs for the day which all looked amazing. This meant so much to us because everything was completely personal. Louise spent the day before, with a couple of friends and family, prepping all the food. We had a huge buffet as our wedding breakfast, which lasted well in to the night and provided wine as toasting drinks (neither of us are keen on Champagne and we felt the wine went well with the cheese cake). We also provided a Hogg roast (Roasting Pig) in the evening. We think we achieved our goal of keeping people well fed and watered.

The night before the wedding we stayed in a bell tent together (it was freezing (we should have guessed as much given that it was October). I got ready in the Honeymoon suite (a room of the apartment located at the venue) and Louise got ready in her parents’ 4 man tent.

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GISELA AND GARAZI – INTIMATE COUPLE SHOOT

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So excited to be sharing this shoot with you!! It’s definitely different from anything I’ve shared on this blog so far, and I hope you love it too. Gisela and Garazi’s lovely styled couple shoot starts with hanging out on the sofa and turns into portraits in the most gorgeous outfits (by our own Brighton based L-O-M!). 

“Wherever she is, this is home to me”

I was reading an article about a same-sex couple, and the discrimination they suffered just to show their love publicly. It’s so sad… How can we destroy the essence of a word like “love”, with this kind of hate? It’s terrible. And I was talking with a friend about it, and she told me that it would be great to do something together, she with her girlfriend, just loving them each other at home. Well, we had everything planned and two days before she told me she can’t, and then I found Garazi and Gisela, and they were perfect for this. That’s why we had an idea about a very simply shooting at home, with a couple, in a normal lifestyle shoot. Laying in the sofa, exchanging some anecdotes, sharing warm smiles… Love has many faces, and for us this was the perfect Sunday morning face.

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KIRA​ ​AND​ ​JENNY​’S DE VERE HORWOOD ESTATE WEDDING

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Photographer Jess Rose shared Kira and Jenny’s lovely wedding with us. Take a look and see what did girls say about their big day.

HOW​ ​DID​ ​YOU​ ​MEET?

We met online (good old gaydargirls!) and after a few messages back and forth decided to meet face to face for a coffee in Starbucks. That coffee lasted about 4 hours! We even went back on our one year anniversary and recreated the date – it wasn’t 4 hours second time round​ ​though!

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TELL​ ​US​ ​ABOUT​ ​THE​ ​DAY!​ ​WHAT​ ​WAS​ ​THE​ ​THEME,​ ​INSPIRATION,​ ​THE MOST​ ​IMPORTANT​ ​AND​ ​MOST​ ​FUN​ ​PART​ ​FOR​ ​YOU?

As we are from the North East both of our families and a lot of friends had to travel a significant distance for our wedding. We tried to make it as easy as possible for them by choosing a venue where we could have everything in one place and also ‘make a weekend of it’. We wanted our day to be as authentically ‘us’ as possible, after this the most important thing to us was to make our guests feel as valued as possible. Our inspiration was ourselves, our story so far and the things we like. We are well known for socialising events where everyone has a good time, nice food, booze and often board games. This formed a theme for our day – the save the dates were paper fortune tellers, our seating plan was a personalized monopoly board, and the favours were travel board games for the children and scrabble tile initial keyrings for the adults. We are also known for being quite last minute/spontaneous people which is why we decided to set the date and plan the wedding in six months. We knew that even if we had two years to plan it we would do it all in the last six months anyway so it didn’t seem worth waiting! We are both willing to get stuck in and Kira is a creative person so we DIY’d as much of the wedding as we could. This meant we made the save the dates, invitations, order of services, seating plan, favours, name cards, table names, advice cards, guestbook hearts and Jenga, I-Spy selfie sticks, hangover kits, dried petal confetti, all flowers, table decorations and various signage.

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