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Friday 23 October - Offley Place

Michelle and Peter

I've shot a lot of weddings at Offley Place but this was my first with a full carpet of autumn leaves across the grounds. Which... as you'll see later ... even doubled as confetti!

Offley in October

Michelle got ready in the bridal suite with some friends helping her - they certainly did their fair share of running up and down the stairs checking that everything was running smoothly and set up exactly as the couple wished,

bride makeup

dress detail and jewellery

bouquet

bride ready

The conservatory was tastefully decorated with cream and lace chairbows, which is where I met Peter and his bestman for a few pre-ceremony photos. Somehow, it's easy to spot that these two friends met through football refereeing - I was expecting them to pull out a red card at me if I stepped out of line at any point.

conservatory set up for ceremony

groom and bestman

With the guests assembled and registrar meetings completed the bridal party made their way to the conservatory. I love the staircase at Offley and it's always a pleasure to get to capture these moments that few other people get to see. Michelle asked her eldest son to give her away and when Peter turned to see her walk down the aisle I don't think he then took his eyes off her for the rest of the ceremony.

descend the stairs

entrances

bride entrance

ceremony vows

ceremony and flowergirl

signing the register

Exiting to applause and cheers I then asked all the guests to join the bride and groom on the terrace for a big group photo. I may have used bribary - no one got a drink until this was done! After mingling and catching up, the bridal party then ventured to the grounds and leaves at the front of the house. It wasn't particularly warm so thankfully the flowergirls each had a fur wrap and I encouraged everyone to stay close so that Michelle didn't turn blue.

exit and all guests

bridal party

flowergirls

I know that the couple were unsure as to how they'd feel being in front of the camera - and had originally looked at simply asking a friend to take a few snaps. However, I'm really pleased that they asked me to come along when they realised that after so much planning it would be a shame not to have a record of the whole event.

bride and groom

bouquet

bride and groom

When I jokingly asked Michelle's sons to shower a few leaves at the couple, I wasn't expecting them to get quite so involved ... or enjoy it quite so much!

showered in leaves

walking towards house

I enjoy seeing the transformation from ceremony to meal, and at Michelle and Peter's wedding this was made particularly special by the amazing flowers by Gill (www.gillybeanflowers.co.uk) who did both tall and low level arrangements. Each guest received a boxed cupcake - made by the bride's friend - who must have worked like a demon to get them all finished and tied with personalised ribbon.

meal setup and flowers

table setting

meal entrance

Michelle had been kept completely in the dark over their honeymoon destination ... the suspense must have been unbearable. However Peter let her in on the location during their first dance!

first dance

 
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