Many couples like their photography coverage to start with the bride getting ready for the big day.
Some people don't like the thought of a photographer being there for all of the potential chaos of rollers, make up and wedding morning nerves.
I can arrive whenever you like. While the rollers are in, or after the dress is on. It's entirely up to you.
One advantage of getting there early means that I can capture details such as flowers and jewellery.
After the early morning trip to the hairdresser's is the make-up.
A shot in normal clothes with the dress hanging up in the background. Anticipation...
...of negotiating your way into the dress!
Of course, another advantage of getting there early is also capturing the little ones when they're still pristine and clean.
Or there's always the memory of little glitches such as trying to get a knot in your necklace. I even had a go at getting that out.
There's always the chance to get a family shot before you become "Mrs..."
And it's an extra chance to get a photo of your dress.
Or capture a memory you'll want to remember forever, such as this father bringing his daughter a special present.
Or documenting the moment when you leave the parental home to embark on married life.
A final hair spritz...and meanwhile what are the grooms up to by now?
Oh yes, relaxing of course after they've sprayed some deodorant on and jumped into a suit.
Photographs of the bridal preparations can really add to the photographic narrative of your day. As I said, it's entirely up to you if you'd like me there just to do shots of the details and then you in your dress. It's your day.
Most of the weddings I photograph are at stately homes or leafy hotels and once in a while, it's nice to get a location which is a bit more modern. I love the texture and pattern of the bricks in the roof in this photo.
I'll be attending the Dissington Hall Wedding Fair on Sunday 4th November. As it's the first one of the "season", I've been thinking of re-vamping my stand. So, I have price lists to re-design, canvases to order and props to source. I'd better get busy!
This is what my stand looked like earlier this year.
This is two lovely flower girls being told about the tradition of the bride having a silver sixpence in her shoe. I love the looks on their faces as they hear about it.
"Something old, something new,
something borrowed, something blue,
and a silver sixpence in her shoe."
I knew this poem but didn't know about the last line. Coins are the original wedding presents, dating from thousands of years ago. Wearing one in your shoe on your wedding day represents wealth and financial security.
Dissington Hall is a gorgeous Georgian mansion house just outside Ponteland in Northumberland.
It was a lovely September day for a wedding.
The bride had got ready at her parents house but arrived a little early to put the finishing touches at the Hall.
Including giving the flower girl her present, a beautiful pop-up story book.
I left their room, in search of the groom. As I left, I turned round to take a photo of this lovely door knob. Just at the same time as a bridesmaid gave the bride a hug. Sometimes the best photos come about by chance.
I got a couple of detail shots from the both the groom and the bride. She had a rather pretty beaded clip to hide where her veil went into her hair.
The groom looking smiley! Then a little more serious, waiting in the ceremony room.
The girls arrived, walking down the staircase. Seeing all of the guests at the bottom didn't phase the flower girl.
After the ceremony, time for some mingling and some photos.
The groom's father had bought all of the groomsmen matching socks with the date and their name on and requested a photo of them showing them off.
Details before going into the meal. The bride had folded a thousand origami cranes to decorate the wall of the marquee. An ancient Japanese legend says that anyone who folds a thousand cranes will be granted a wish by a crane. Wishes aside, they looked stunning.
The map was the seating plan and the "bride and groom" on top of the cake had been snuck on there by the bride's brother. Some family joke. Would she notice?!
She certainly checked the cake out when she went past.
All day, the groom's father had been great fun. During the best man's speech, the bride almost despaired as her new father-in-law pretended he was going to get up to make a speech.
After the meal, the weather was still glorious so everyone moved out to the lawn for garden games.
There was croquet, and quoits, and pick-up-sticks...
...and jenga. But it was so lovely that some people just lazed on the grass.
Oh, and there was swing ball. Have you ever seen a bride playing swing ball? You have now!
The only trouble was that she couldn't move from that spot because of her dress.
While the guests were occupied with the games, we went off to take some more photographs.
The iconic window at Dissington Hall.
Then a couple outside.
After a swish of the dress, we made our way back to the guests.
I popped back inside to find that the cake had been moved into the Billiard room. One mum had made the cake and the other mum had arranged the flowers that were dotted around the rooms. So I thought it would be lovely to have a photo of both of their handiwork.
Everyone came inside for the cake cutting and the first dance...
...and then the party started!!
I got a few shots, then let them dance the night away.