Annabelle and Oliver, both chartered Accountants from Wootton, Northampton, held their dream wedding at Fawsley Hall on Friday 23rd November 2018. Their wedding photography presents a day filled with beaming grins and picture perfect moments – we had to know how they did it. So we grabbed ten minutes with Annabelle to get the details…
The Lead Up…
Let’s take it back to your engagement, tell us about it!
We got engaged on 13th September 2017 in Taormina in Sicily. Oliver surprised me with the holiday to Sicily. On the night of the proposal we were having a lovely candlelit meal on a rooftop overlooking the Ionian sea. Oliver got down on one knee and proposed with a beautiful Beverley Hills Jewellers halo ring. I am not sure if I even said yes, I was crying (with joy).
How amazing! You chose to hold your wedding in November, was the season an important factor for you?
Yes, I had always dreamt of a cosy twinkly winter wedding. My Father and Step Mother got married at Fawsley Hall in the December of 2008. They had a lovely sparkly winter wedding, and I think this formed a big part of my inspiration for our day. Oliver and I visited Fawsley in the autumn/winter of 2017 and immediately fell in love with the setting and cosy feel, in particular the Tudor Great Hall – we loved it so much that we decided to have our drinks reception in that room specifically!
The Big Day…
Fawsley is an incredible venue with so many options, where did you choose to hold each part of your day?
We had 100 guests attending our wedding ceremony and we chose to have it in the Church of St Mary the Virgin at 12:00pm. We wanted the day to start with a traditional church setting, both Oliver and I were insistent from the beginning that we wanted a religious ceremony, the Fawsley church was the perfect winter setting with its stained glass windows and perched position on the hill overlooking Fawsley Hall.
This was followed by a walk over the sheep field to the Tudor Great Hall for warm winter pimms and bubbles (guests were provided with heel protectors & shoe covers to get there!). The Tudor Great Hall was the perfect place to bring to life the cosy feel we really wanted for this part of the day - we loved that guests could stand up and mingle around the large fireplace.
After the drinks reception we moved over to Knightley Court for our receiving line and wedding meal. We fell in love with the modern and grand feel of the Saunders room with its ceiling lined chandeliers and wooden walls.
We finished our day with our evening party also in Knightley Court which was the perfect size for our 130 guests!
Your day was filled with entertainment which really caught our eye, how did you go about creating your perfect day?
We had a singer for the church and wedding breakfast; Cat Delphi – we actually managed to find Cat last minute online! We listened to her recorded songs and knew straight away she would be a great fit for the church and singing our guests in to the wedding breakfast.
We had a saxophonist; Steve O’Gorman, who I was recommended via a family friend who has performed with him. He played in our drinks reception in the Tudor Hall. I had always envisioned a saxophonist in this room, as it gave such a classic yet cool feel. In addition, we had a caricature who drew guests enjoying the drinks reception. My father found him online, he has been on Blue Peter!
Finally, we had a band Renegades of Rock for the reception, we spotted the guys on Warble entertainment online. They brought a real party feel to the evening and certainly got the guests on the dance floor! We also hired a wedding photo screen which meant guests could upload selfies from their phones and it would appear on a big screen and could be printed off. It was so much fun!!
It certainly looked like a super day! What was your first dance song?
Ed Sheeran – Tenerife Sea
Now, we were blown away by your wedding photos – such lovely memories! Who was behind the camera?
Funny story here… Tarik our photographer from IVY LEAF Wedding Photo & Film actually offered to step in at last minute due to a medical emergency with our booked photographer! Tarik was absolutely fantastic – as you can imagine any bride rearranging suppliers at last minute could have been a real bridezilla moment! Tarik made me feel calm and under control. He explained everything over the phone and he seemed to instantly understand my vision for the wedding photos and the fact I loved black and white images!! I remember the first time I visited Tarik’s website I saw an amazing black and white close up shot of a bride and groom and straight away I knew we were in very capable hands.
I met Tarik the morning of the wedding at my front door and I believe we had a hug and I felt like I was comfortable in his presence immediately. One of my favourite things to do now is revisit our wedding photos and take it all in. We often get compliments on our photos. We couldn’t thank Tarik enough for his efforts and making our day and pictures so perfect.
That sounds a bit like fate! And did the location make your photos make your photos even more special?
Yes, our wedding day was a typical misty English November day. It was actually perfect for the photos and in particular for the grounds surrounding Fawsley Hall and the church. One of my favourite pictures has the grounds and lake in the background and with the heavy misty sky it adds a really elegant feel.
We love our guest photos in the Tudor hall, with the large paintings and fireplace in the background – it gives the added touch we were hoping for.
Did you choose a theme for your wedding?
No particular theme, however throughout the planning process we always wanted a classic yet minimalist elegance to the day. We also wanted to bring in the wintery wedding cosy feel, so I was very keen to have lots of natural candle light to get the twinkly effect. The entrance hall to Knightley Court had around 50 individual candles! (Fawsley Hall kindly lit all candles for us!)
The flowers were very neutral in whites and greens, the bridesmaid wore a light beige/pink and all details were consistent, down to the beautiful pink ruffle chair covers.
Emma Remington did our flowers, I had loved her images on Instagram and she really did create exactly the look we wanted, with the simplistic yet elegant white and green colours. I particularly loved our huge gypsophilia dome candelabra displays either side of the alter in the church – they were incredible.
And your dress, how did you choose the one?
I wanted my dress to be quite classic, I loved the simplistic A-line style in a satin finish. I feel that my dress incorporated elements of all the important woman in my life’s wedding dresses; my mum wore a Bardot off the shoulder wedding dress, which I incorporated through a removable bardot lace jacket. The A line was from my Step Mothers dress and the ivory satin style was inspired by my Grand Mothers wedding dress. I bought my dress from a local boutique; Courtyard Bridal (were Kettering, now based in Market Harborough)
The Final Say So...
What would you say was the best part of your day?
Other than the ceremony, where we were pronounced husband and wife! It would have to be seeing all the guests and our families come together and laugh and celebrate in a beautiful setting.
If you were to do it all again, is there anything you would do differently?
Have a whole weekend as opposed to one day! – the day went so quickly, and as much as we tried to take in every aspect of it, it was easy to lose track and the day just runs away with all the happiness and fun being had! And maybe a second (party) dress..!!
- Photography: Tarik, Ivy Leaf ( Website: https://www.ivyleaf.studio/ Instagram: @ivyleaf.studio)
- Flowers: Emma Remington (https://www.emmaremingtonflowers.com/)
- Singer: Cat Delphi (https://www.catdelphi.com/)
- Saxophonist: Steve O’Gorman – (https://www.facebook.com/stephen.ogorman.94)
- Caricature: George (https://www.wedding-caricatures.co.uk/)
- Selfie screen: (https://www.picmephotoboothhire.co.uk/)