Last month we had the pleasure of photographing Chloe and Craig’s wedding. They had a stunning day, celebrating across three lovely venues in three counties with their two sweet boys, family and friends. With the weekend weather suddenly jumping up to 30 degrees. it was hot, hot!! But they were absolutely cool and calm about the fact their day ended up being an absolute scorcher.
The ceremony was in the (thankfully cool) grand Council House in Nottingham, followed by a drinks reception at Hemington House, a private, family-owned home in Leicestershire with beautiful gardens. This was followed by the wedding breakfast, live music and party at The Risley Park pub in Derbyshire. To get between the venues they hired a wonderful red bus which transported their guests across the counties.
We like to get to know our couples, find out the story behind their big day and share more with you so you can see our style of photography at weddings, and hear about it from the bride and grooms perspective. Here’s a fun little interview we did with Chloe about how they met, got engaged and her favourite moments from the wedding. She also tells us all about that incident with the camper van….
First things first, how did you two meet and how long have you been together?
Chloe - “Craig actually knew who I was when we were at school. We went to different schools in the same town & he knew who I was through friends of his but I didn’t know who he was. We didn’t actually meet until, I believe it was New Years Eve, 10 years ago at a local club that used to be open in Long Eaton called Credos and we met there. We didn’t start officially get together as boyfriend and girlfriend until the following July.
We wanted to get married on our 10 year anniversary of getting together but that fell on a Monday, and no one wants to go to a Monday wedding, so we went for the next best thing which was the Saturday before.
So yeah, 10 years together!”
How did you get engaged?
Chloe - “Craig proposed to me on a beach, when we went on our first family holiday after we’d had Spencer. Well it was supposed to be our first family holiday but unfortunately Spencer got chicken pox the week before we were supposed to go so he wasn’t able to fly. So, that meant that me and Craig were going on our first holiday together just he and I.
We’d gone out for a drink, and he surprised me, down on one knee when I’d turned around, on a nice evening. That was 8 years ago in Fuerteventura.”
Did you see each other before the wedding? If not, did you like waiting or would you rather have done it differently? Tell me why or why not!
Chloe - “No we decided to do it traditionally and not see each other. On the day before the wedding I stayed with my bridesmaids at one of my best friends house’s. So we didn’t see each other until we were at the end of the aisle. I think it’s really nice that we did it like that. It was exciting. Felt like we’d not seen each other for a long time.”
What was your favourite moment(s) from the wedding?
Chloe - “My favourite moment from the wedding was the ceremony itself. I thought I’d feel dead nervous but I didn’t in the moment, I felt very confident and just happy. Not overly emotional which I’d worried about - blubbing everywhere - but I was absolutely fine.”
Tell me about your dress. Where did you find it, how did you choose it, how did you know it was the one?
Chloe - “The dress? The main dress. Like all brides to be, when the date was set I was browsing through Pinterest, not really sure what I was looking for and this dress came up. And I was like, “Oh my gosh, THAT dress. I need that dress!”
I found out it was from Pronovias, a fairly high end dress maker. I thought there’s no way I’m going to be able to afford this. But, I tried and I kept looking and, believe it or not, I actually got it from a lady who was selling it online and had basically changed her mind but she’d already got it altered in length and, luckily, she was the same height as me. So, I got for an absolute bargain price! Otherwise it would have never been financially possible to have it. I’m a great believer that that dress was meant to be in my life.
So, because I got it for a bargain price I had the option to add a few bits to it to make it bespoke to me. I had the bardot sleeves added, obviously it needed altering and I had the satin buttons put in all down the back. The dress was a dream, apart from the fact it was very thick dress and it ended up being 30 degrees on the day so I was absolutely melting! But you can’t plan all these things can you.”
I’d love to hear about vendors! Who did you particularly love, and why?
Chloe - “Vendors wise, we loved all of them. But I think Lily Monroes, who did all our hair and make up in the morning. Apart from doing a fantastic job and making us all look incredible, Danielle was very good at calming my nerves. I say nerves, maybe not nerves but I was really anxious as you can imagine, didn’t have much sleep. I think I got three hours tops and she just help me deal with those morning nerves, which I’ll be forever grateful for. So Lily Monroes were a standout on the day.”
She has also commented on the incredible design and creation of their wedding cakes, from Yumcake by Gosia. Which were a perfect mix of intricate design and elegant simplicity (I’ve also been told they tasted delicious!)
Did you make anything for your wedding?
Chloe - “Yes, we (well, mostly I!) made lots and lot and lots and of things for the wedding decor-wise. We decided to make our own invitations, obviously to save money so we could spend money in other places, for example hiring the bus, which wouldn’t have been possible if we hadn’t cut costs. So, we made all the invitations, places setting names, the centrepieces for the tables including the top table, made the seating plan and a ‘Welcome to our wedding’ sign.”
Would you do any of those DIY things again?
Chloe - “I’d definitely do it all again. The amount of money we saved it was definitely worth it and the majority of it was enjoyable too. It really gives it that personal touch and it just gives a different level of pride. As well as planning what the venue is going to look like when you physically made a lot of elements of it, it made me feel very proud when people said it looks beautiful. And it definitely made it worthwhile all the hours I put in.”
Here are the fab invites - bride’s own photographs
What's one piece of advice you would give to other couples planning their wedding?
Chloe - “Advice I’d give to other couples…if you’re on a budget, well obviously everyone is on a budget, if you’re on a smaller budget then try and make things yourself. Do research and don’t be scared to negotiate, as you know many places add a premium when you say it’s a wedding. I’m not going to lie, a few things I didn’t even tell them it was a wedding I just said it was a party! That saved me a lot of money.”
What photography-related advice would you offer to other couples?
Chloe - “Photography-related advice would be definitely do lots of research! Recommendations from people you know is a big one, anyone who’s actually worked with them. And going for a pre-wedding shoot is great to see if you gel. The photographers are obviously a big part of your day and it’s good to have a level of rapport built with them beforehand which we definitely felt we did with Dave and Amy. So, my main advice would be to get that pre-wedding shoot to see if it’s a match!”
We almost forgot to mention the campervan! What happened to that?
Chloe - “So we were driving in convoy, in a white Range Rover and the girls were in the campervan and Glenn (my friend who was driving the Range Rover) gets a phone call from Rod who was driving the campervan. He just said “It’s gone mate, it’s gone!!” There may have been a few swear words from the both of them! Then, because we were on time, with not much time to spare, so we couldn’t have stopped if we wanted to. Although we actually broke down on the Clifton flyover, which is a single lane flyover without a hard shoulder or anything. So there couldn’t be a worse place to break down really.
We were probably 5 or 10 minutes away from the venue. So the plan was Glenn would whizz me into town and I’d hide in a shop or something and Glenn would nip back and get the girls. But the girls took the initiative and flagged down a couple of really kind strangers within a couple of minutes. They gave them a lift and it was then pretty much straight in and straight down the aisle!”
Oops! Luckily everyone arrived in time and no-one at the venue (including us) had noticed. Thank you to Chloe for sharing your thoughts behind your day, wishing you and your boys health and happiness for years to come!
P. S. If you want to know more about us as photographers and our style of wedding photography click the link below or check us out on Facebook.
The dream team:
Ceremony venue: Nottingham Council House, Nottingham
Drinks Reception: a private family house
Wedding Breakfast and party: The Risley Park pub, Derbyshire
Hair/Makeup: Lilly Monroes (Canning Cambers, Nottingham)
Bride’s shoes: Giuseppe Zanotti
Groom’s shoes: Asos
Suits: Red Herring at Debenhams
Waistcoats – River Island
Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Little Mistress, each bridesmaid customised their dresses to make them bespoke.
Florist: Buddies, Castle Donnington, Leicestershire
Cake: Yumcake by Gosia, Nottinghamshire
Caterer: The Risley Park Pub, Derbyshire
Bar Services: The Aplary at Castle Donnington
DJ: N-Genius Events
Band: The Verzions
Transportation: Vintage Vehicle & London Bus Hire