Sammy and Steven’s Magical Non-Traditional Wedding
Wedding Photography at the Hilton Avisford by Barry Page

Sammy and Steven’s Magical Non-Traditional Wedding

Bride and groom Sammy and Steven pushed the boat out for their fishing themed wedding, a fabulous event that they managed to personalise brilliantly, complete with camouflage fabric waistcoats, fish carvings and a fish-themed wedding cake. I’ve never seen anything like it – completely wonderful – and it added a thrilling new dimension to my wedding photography role. Here’s a peek into one of the most fun and unusual weddings I’ve attended for ages.

Wedding photography Hilton Avisford – A wonderful themed wedding

Sammy and Steven had been together for three years when they got engaged. Then they waited another ten years to actually get married, an event that took place on their 13th anniversary… not the least bit unlucky! They were keen to make their wedding personal, tailoring ever aspect of it so it reflected their lives, loves, hobbies and personalities. That meant only one thing to this very special couple: it absolutely had to have a fishing theme, in line with Steven’s passion for the sport.

Having said that, they let me know that the most important thing to them was having all the people they loved – and who loved them – there to celebrate. Close family and friends made it even more special, many of whom had travelled a very long way.

The couple were married in Steven’s family church, the same church where their two children were christened. Sammy and her dad were driven to the church by her brother in law, then Sammy’s mum surprised the couple with a very special Jaguar, the exact same car that she’d had for her wedding ten years ago as well as Steven’s favourite marque. Afterwards the couple made their way to Steven’s beloved fishing lake for photos before heading for the smart Hilton Avisford for their wedding reception.

Sammy’s gorgeous wedding dress, a glorious fitted confection in creamy floaty fabric with a long fishtail, was chosen by her mum and best friend and maid of honour, a lovely touch, and the dress was finished off to perfection with elegant low-heeled wedding shoes. A hairdresser friend did the bride and bridal party’s hair, and the make-up by a lady Sam discovered on Facebook, creating a pretty natural look. The flowers also came via Facebook, a task Sammy managed remotely via Facebook messaging. The resulting teardrop bouquet, stuffed with fragrant, delicate roses, was a small masterpiece.

Steven was determined to tie his wedding outfit in with the fishing theme, with camouflage waistcoats made by a brilliant seamstress who found the exact right fabric in the USA and made the waistcoats especially for the groom, best man, father of the bride, stepfather of the bride, father of the groom and the couple’s son.

The fishing theme continued thanks to three hand-carved wooden fish made by the bride’s children’s child minder’s brother, fish place cards and a fish drop box, a fishing net with fish and worm sweets hanging out of it, and the piece de resistance… a three tier white wedding cake with two beautifully made carp as the cake toppers, all made by a good friend of Sammy’s – and it was the first time she’d ever made fish. How clever.

The couple’s two children hand-made a sign welcoming guests to mummy and daddy’s wedding, and Sammy made little activity boxes for the children to keep them entertained and happy during the meal. Their son carried the rings down the aisle and their daughter read out a poem she’d written about her mum and dad, something that really did bring the tears to my eyes, a really special personal touch. Another lovely thing in a day packed with loveliness – the bride’s wedding ring belonged to her nan, a ring Sammy had kept safe for 13 years until her own wedding.

I loved the caricaturist, David Groves, who was there during the day. It was his job to draw the guests and he was so talented. What a nice man – he even gave the couple’s little son some paper so he could draw a picture of his mummy on her big day. The evening saw a magician arrive. In Sammy’s words, “He was just out this world – he was amazing. Looking back at the photos and people’s reactions are brilliant! My guests are still talking about him now, he made my wedding reception”.

Kind words about my wedding photography

Last but not least, I’ve just got to let you know what Sammy said about me. I am still glowing with praise! Here goes. “Well, what can I say about Barry – he is just wow! He was such a lovely man, professional but so funny he got the children and adults laughing and smiling. I booked him as loved his work and really liked him as a person. The main photographs I wanted were sunset pictures and lake photos and he got them and so much more.”

What a day. What a delightful couple. What a pleasure. This is one wedding photography job I won’t forget in a hurry. Thanks again to Sammy and Steve for the privilege. Here’s wishing you an equally magical life together.

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