engagement photography on english weddingHello there, and happy Sunday night / Monday morning. I hope you had a wonderful weekend and enjoyed as much gorgeous sunshine as we had here in Cheshire today. Well it’s back to work with a bump on Monday morning – for me too – but I think I can lift your spirits by saying… “Welcome one and all to e-shoot week on the English Wedding blog!”

This week’s all about engagements. Christmas and New Year are peak times for proposals, and if you’re just setting out on your wedding planning adventure let me say a very happy Congratulations to you and your other half – and enjoy every second of the whole experience! It will be a journey you will never forget.

So what’s e-shoot week all about? I thought it would be a great opportunity to share some pre-wedding photography sessions with everyone. I featured the first ever e-shoot on English Wedding back in October and it inspired me to look into pre-wedding photography in a big way. Many photographers offer engagement photography as a way to get comfortable with being photographed before your big day – and I think it’s a fantastic thing to do.

Sparkly winter wedding decorations
Sparkly winter wedding decorations

Jo and Dom's wedding decorations are gorgeous - but the photography makes them magical, theatrical and more

Yesterday’s wedding was fantastic – but I had so many wonderful images to show you I had to hold back the very best for today. It’s time for Dom and Jo’s unique wedding reception at Dartington Hall.

This couple are fantastic, and their friends and family are real characters. Wedding photographer Chris Hanley said their day was full of warmth and love – and it really is special. The best thing about Dom and Jo being on English Wedding is that they’re just like you and me – the beautiful thing about their wedding is their personalities and how they’ve made their celebration really personal, memorable and just right for them.

Bride and groom at Dartington Hall

I love this photograph - it's almost in layers, with Jo and Dom the centre of attention, framed by a gorgeous archway and Dartington Hall looking like a watercolour painting in the background

Time to relax and have fun

Time to relax and have fun

Wedding shoes for a quirky lady with bags of character and class

Wedding shoes for a quirky and sophisticated bride with bags of character and class...

What makes every wedding special for me is personality and character. And I believe with all my heart that everyone has a unique spark which makes them wonderful. The trick is showing it – and in the case of Jo and Dom’s wedding those little sparks are everywhere.

These two are best of friends, soulmates and so much more – and every photograph shows what a fabulous couple they are. Thank you as ever to “friend of English Wedding” and top wedding photographer Chris Hanley for sharing these photographs with us.

Chris has asked me to mention his second photographer for this wedding: Steven Brooks takes the credit for some of these beautiful, artistic and creative images. With Chris and Steven working so well as a team, I have to split this blog feature into two parts – there are so many amazing scenes, details and moments to share.

Part one today, and part two to follow in the morning. Enjoy…

Wedding teaser


It’s a busy week for little old English Wedding… and as I promote the blog, chat to friends and guest bloggers, invite new sponsors and polish off some new sections for the website there’s just time to share a little preview of a wonderfully creative wedding I’ll be sharing here tomorrow morning.

I do love to tease with a sneaky preview from time to time! This wedding has a little of everything…

UK Bride in embroidered wedding dress

Enticing photography, a beautiful bride, a stunning lace wedding dress

Bride and groom with sunflowers

A bride and groom with a great sense of fun! But who's hiding behind the sunflower bouquet?

little wedding guest

A wedding guest waits for the exciting bit - as a photographer with an eye for mischief captures a really sweet shot!

For now we’ll have to wait along with this little guy for some gorgeous moments to come tomorrow.

And the day after.

It’ll be worth the wait – it always is with Chris Hanley Photography, creator of these intriguing images!


Every time I see a new wedding from PR Photography I tumble head over heels for the Filmatography™ concept all over again. This is no exception: as Siqin and Dominik celebrate their wedding there is moment after moment of beautiful emotion to keep you on the edge of your seat.

I don’t know what gets me more – the elegance of the film, the wonderful styling of Siqin and Dominik’s day or the smiles and happy tears captured in this cinematic wedding film. It’s probably the perfect combination of all of the above!

Watch out for the incredible imagery of beautiful bride Siqin’s wedding dress with the beautifully distinctive floral neckline, and for the filming of her veil just afterwards. The pigeons taking flight is another exciting moment which I loved, but best of all Dominik’s nervous emotion turning into a beaming smile after the ceremony is wonderful to watch! Later it’s Siqin’s turn to well up a little during the speeches – all captured on film in the most sensitive and natural way.


Your Manchester Wedding magazineThis naughty wedding blogger has a confession to make: I broke my own rule and took out a press ad for my wedding calligraphy business today. So – does anyone need a second-hand soapbox? I’ll have to stop blogging about how I never advertise in the wedding press!

However… the guys from Your Manchester Wedding magazine persuaded me. In November I’d spoken to Natasha from their advertising team. I’d told her – and she’d taken some very detailed notes which Conan* read back to me today – their mag was “very advertising heavy” and I’d asked a bag of awkward questions about circulation and distribution of the mag. We had a long chat and I remember taking copious notes at the time but I didn’t want to advertise.

Your Manchester Wedding MagazineSince that call though, I’ve had the mag in my orders folder and flicked through it regularly. It’s had my attention for a lot longer than any of the national wedding magazines have ever grabbed me – and if even I’m still reading a wedding mag four months later, it can’t be bad!


I’ve just received this press release from BBC3 – and unlike some other wedding programmes I’ve seen, this sounds like a really inspiring programme to watch and be involved in. So – hot off the press:

Love productions wedding planning pilotHave you ever wondered how people view you as a couple? Would you like the chance to delve into somebody else’s engagement and see what they’re planning for their big day, and their future lives together?

So much focus goes into the wedding day that sometimes the big questions get buried beneath the flower arrangements and seating plans. We are looking for young couples who are interested in taking a voyage of discovery with their partner before the big day – an experience designed to give their marriage a better chance of lasting the course.

You need to have your wedding plans underway and be willing to explore your relationship with your partner. You will need to be open with one another about what you want from your life together – your strengths and weaknesses as a couple. You will also be interested in finding out more about what makes people’s relationships tick.


I’m writing a quick little post at the end of a long but very lovely day out with my boyfriend (who is coming to terms with the notion of being called Mr English Wedding). Being self-employed and free to take a cheeky holiday when we can, we nipped into Manchester today for lunch and a bit of shopping.

I’ll skip to the best bit… Manchester’s northern quarter is one of our favourite haunts but it’s only today I discovered the Sweet Tooth Cupcakery, nestled next door to Cafe Pop. We nipped in for a cappuccino and I couldn’t resist a couple of cupcakes to take home.

Cupcake from Sweet Tooth Cupcakes in ManchesterSometimes you don’t need an overly flashy website or beautiful photography – sometimes simple is all you need. And the Sweet Tooth Cupcakery has simplicity and deliciousness all wrapped up in their perfect little cakey packages. The best news? They do wedding cupcake orders.

Cupcake from Sweet Tooth Cupcakes in ManchesterCupcake from Sweet Tooth Cupcakes in Manchester“What about Cindy Lauper?” I hear you ask.


Christmas and New Year are busy times for engagements – and I’d like to say a big hello to all the newly engaged couples reading English Wedding for the first time this week. Congratulations to all of you!!!

engagement photography by Chris Hanley

A taster of what's in store for you next week - stunning engagement / pre-wedding photography from some of my favourite photographers

I’d planned an ‘e-shoot week’ on the English Wedding blog for early January… for this week, in fact, but I’m running a day or two behind – so as you read this, I’m on the other side of the screen clattering away at my keyboard and getting ready for a week of beautiful engagement photo shoots to share with you. Sorry to keep you waiting… they’ll be here next week starting on Monday!

If you can’t wait (or if you can spend a minute to boost my facebook ‘Likes’!) pop over to the English Wedding facebook page… because I’ve just put preview pictures of next week’s engagement photos on there. They’re by some of my favourite photographers and I guarantee some truly amazing blog posts for you on e-shoot week next week!


It’s brilliant to get a debate going on English Wedding, and we’ve had some good discussions this year about the UK wedding industry in particular.

English Wedding blog - the demise of the wedding directoryThe wedding industry doesn’t have the best reputation, and while most of us love what we do and put our hearts and souls into running wedding businesses, there are others who just want to take our money and yours and run off with it.

One example – old fashioned, boring and useless online wedding directories. We had a lively discussion about the demise of the old fashioned directory site here at English Wedding! There’ll be more where that came from in 2011.


Modern weddings with a vintage theme are wonderful, and I love blogging them and reading about vintage weddings on other wedding blogs. But I’d love to travel back in time a generation or two and see real weddings first hand.

I recently spent a weekend at my parents’ house and had a chat with my Grandma too, and found out loads about their weddings as well as discovering family wedding pictures I’d never seen before.

My parents’ wedding day – in words and pictures

Mel and Dot and the white wedding taxi

My parents' wedding day: Mel and Dot and the white wedding taxi

My parents were married in December 1971. They didn’t organise their own wedding, my Grandma arranged everything for them – and she told me she spent a day or two – in total – planning the wedding. I loved hearing about it: they had the kind of wedding that appeals to me so much nowadays. Both of my parents were very independent and relaxed about the celebrations, so there was no wedding planning stress.


Image link from Dream Occasions wedding plannerHappy New Year everyone! (I know I’ve already said it but you might not have been back to English Wedding yet!) I hope you’re having a great time launching into your wedding planning, whether you’re newly engaged or a 2011 bride.

With it being time for resolutions and all, I thought this would be a good bit of advice to start off the new year – because setting out your wedding budget is the best way to avoid wedding planning stress. I hope it’s useful for you!

Getting started with your wedding budget

by guest blogger and top UK wedding planner Bernadette Chapman of Dream Occasions

If there is one thing that upsets me greatly, it’s seeing couples struggle to pay for a wedding they cannot afford. Please work out what you can realistically afford to spend and speak to your parents about any contribution they can offer.

You should do this from the outset so you know what venue you can book and what suppliers to hire, you don’t want to book a venue only to discover it blows 70% of your budget, whoops just doesn’t cover it!

Karapürçek Escort Bilecik Escort Bolu Escort


Modern blue styling ideas with calligraphy for an alternative beach wedding (18)

Image credit: Oobaloos Photography

Would you like to get exclusive offers, exciting
updates and wedding blog sneak peeks by email?