A Home-Made Wedding: Emma & Jonathan at Oulton Hall

21st January 2013
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Imagine everything you might possibly be able to make for your own wedding, if you had the time, patience and dedication, and you might come close to the list of things Emma and Jonathan set out to do on their own when they booked their wedding almost two years ago. I remember the first time we met and I must profess to a secretly raised eyebrow (or two) when I heard what they had planned. Whereas I may not now actually eat my hat, I certainly doff it in their direction after witnessing the most personalised wedding we have ever photographed!

When thinking about the main words that spring to mind when trying to describe Emma & Jonathan, “fun”, “YOUNG”, “dedicated” and “mad as a box of frogs” all tussle for first place. We knew it was going to be a fun day and boy were we not disappointed.

So basically….here’s the thing……they made, well, everything themselves. For example (and I know I will miss loads): the DRESS, the bridemaids dresses, the flower girl dresses, the boys waistcoats, the boys ties, the bouquet, the corsages, the table centre pieces, the table plan (and not just any old table plan – see later), the jewellery, the photographers sharp suit (ok, maybe I’m running out of things). Just incredible.

Anyway – let’s have some photos starting with my trip to the hairdressers where the girls were starting the day, and Emma’s Mum and Dad’s. Caroline, as ever, grabbing tea and breakfast with the boys.

The wedding service took place at St James’ in Manston. Although we had been blessed with the one day of sunshine over the Christmas period, it was just a tad on the blustery side and although Emma did pretty well at controlling her emotions, controlling her wedding attire was a different matter altogether. In all seriousness I had to stop myself constantly gauping at Emma’s beautiful dress and the fact that she’d made it. Maybe it’s time I got over it…


Daylight was fading fast by the time we arrived at Oulton Hall for the Reception, so it was off, champagne glass in hand, for a few bride and groom shots in the grounds before heading inside to complete the job. This was the third shoot we had done with Emma and Jonathan and they just fell back into it – just like riding a bike!

The evening was a little unorthadox. Dinner and speeches were followed by a pub quiz (so hard not to shout out the answers!) and then, to top it all off, a game of Mr and Mrs for the newly married couple. Including authentic headphones! Great entertainment and well worth sticking around for.
The first dance took place discretely to Take That’s “Greatest Day” played by one of Jonathan’s ushers on the keyboard. Even the first dance was “do it yourself”…..

Ah yes – the table plan. Jonathan hand-drew it and it depicts an ordanance survey map of some of their favourite Lake District spots, including Scarfell Pike where Jonathan proposed. Apparently he did it while watching Formula 1 races on TV. It took him a whole season!! Told you – mad as a box of frogs. But soooooo romantic!

A brilliant wedding where all the meticulous planning and hard work really did pay off. We loved being part of it.

Richard & Caroline xx



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