Some wedding days are just so easy, everything from prep to party falls smoothly into place; timings are relaxed, everyone is on time, the weather plays ball and the venue and all wedding ‘suppliers’ completely nail it! When this happens and you have a couple like Hannah & Ruari to spend the day capturing, it’s ALMOST too easy (I did say ‘almost’!)! You’ll only need to glance at the image above to know everything that you need to know about the 2 of them. Absolutely gorgeous, soooo happy and soooo completely relaxed and in-love. I know everyone is in-love on their wedding day but sometimes it’s almost tangible and utterly infectious and you quickly notice that everyone around the couple is feeling it too and the grins, hugs and tears are shared by all who are privileged to be a part of such a special day.
And so it was for Hannah & Ruari’s incredible wedding day in Old Catton and at The Norfolk Mead Hotel. The morning was spent at Hannah’s family home in Old Catton, a short walk/drive to the beautiful church where she and Ruari were to marry. The morning was a lot of fun, a big bridal party really enjoying each others’ company and the growing excitement while so well hosted by mum and dad. The very talented and lovely Leanna Stibbon was working her magic with the make-up (not that anyone needed any magic!) and is always fun to work with on a wedding morning. The family home had a lovely garden and conservatory (lots of light!) for the prep so it was a great location to capture the build up before the ceremony. By the time I left for church ahead of Hannah, I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house – Hannah steeping out in her wedding dress before mum, dad and bridesmaids looking drop-dead gorgeous was a highlight, genuine wide-eyes and mouths all round.
Ruari is one good-looking guy too and looked a million dollars as I arrived at church. I sense he was maybe a little nervous, like many grooms, but he was soon at ease as a beaming Hannah joined him at the altar. The lovely service was ended in a very special way; Hannah is a primary school teacher and her class formed up at the front of church and sang beautifully for her – yet more tears! It was just so lovely to see how much affection there was from the children towards Hannah and how excited and honoured they all felt to have a starring role in her very special day.
The afternoon and evening was spent at the Norfolk Mead Hotel, Coltishall. I’ve worked many times at the Norfolk Mead and it’s a great place to shoot with its lovely modern, clean and bright wedding reception area and beautiful sheltered walled gardens. There’s a lovely drive that always gets perfect pools of light for portraits and of course the Broads are literally on the doorstep. One thing the Norfolk Mead Hotel also does so well is the food and their BBQ option is always exceptional! It’s a great way for guests to get exactly what they want on their plates, be served quickly and creates a really informal and relaxed atmosphere for everyone. If I’m being catered for, I’m always ready to swoop after the final guest!
As I said at the start, timings also worked so well for Hannah & Ruari with plenty of time for a nice relaxed walk around the grounds for some portraits before returning for speeches and the arrival of evening guests. The dance floor was also inevitably busy with guests enjoying the tunes provided by the always awesome Joe Ringer Band. While I’m always pretty worn out after a wedding day, I can’t remember a wedding day passing quite so smoothly and leaving feeling quite so fresh still. Hannah & Ruari made their day look so easy. Their love, their laughter and their amazing chemistry rubbed off on everyone present and I was left genuinely feeling that there’s no way these 2 lovely people were ever not going to one day find each other. A long and very happy marriage lies ahead of them and I feel blessed to have captured them embarking on that journey.
Here are a few images from that wonderful day.