If you saw the picture above would you think Danielles garden or booked venue?
The story goes...Danielle & the 'Luckiest' man in the world get Engaged in Rome. So seeing as he dropped down on one knee as music played on the Spanish Steps you just knew the wedding was going to be something magnificent. I was on cloud nine and began planning immediately. We squeezed in one last baby, I purchased the dress and off I skipped.
Hen do booked and in full swing and due to jet off with my home made festival style bridal crown in 4 months time. WRONG.
Woke to news of a global pandemic, my bridesmaids what's app group went crazy at even just the sheer though of having to abandon the hen do. No one spoke about the wedding, just incase we might jinx anything I think. 4 months in I was still organising my 2021 wedding, paid my suppliers deposits then lockdown happened. I sat on my garden bench and spoke to my fiancé. We both agreed that if things weren't going to be exciting or if it was going to be unpredictable for a very long time we just wanted to be married we had waited long enough.
I rang all my suppliers and confused them no doubt after just paying my deposits and told them the news of getting married in 4 weeks time instead. Due to restrictions some of our suppliers weren't able to provide the services or my new location/couldn't cater for it but 80% just got scaled down.
Then the wait began again. I sat on the beach with my children and the news broke. Weddings would be permitted again. I was overjoyed. Made an appointment to give notice and at this point I would of married my man just me and him. I didn't want to be selfish but I wanted our love story and if this entire year had taught me anything it was that things can change rapidly so just take what you can and be happy.
I can hear you all thinking but what about the dress. Well this was something I had to make my peace with. No way on earth would a year lead time on production dress be ready 3 months after I had ordered it. Even if we had kept our original date it was doubtful it would have been ready due to delayed production. So I called my dress shop(JS Couture London) sent them the confirmation email of my cancelation, wept a little, popped my big girls pants on closed the laptop.
PING...you've got mail. The bridal shop went above and beyond they contacted the designer as they could remember my visit just a few shorts months before and the designer agreed to let me have a brand new sample that I had tried. It had fitted me so well. I was ecstatic. I had my family, my man, my dress. I was elated.
So 4 weeks later and with 4 days notice due to the biggest down pour.....I organised a wedding. We had to wait to plan eating arrangements due to indoor outdoor restrictions and the slight snag of the weather. I booked a mini marque that fitted into my garden with not one inch to spare. My troops arrived the day before and we stocked the bar area, borrowed glasses & plates/cutlery and all that we could from friends and family as shops were not open. Holly from Effortless Elegance arrived and added the finishing touches and really made it feel like a wedding reception in the middle of my garden. I dare to say if you couldn't spy the child's outdoor activity swing set through the marquee you would be non the wiser we were at home.
Our local church accommodated us wonderfully after knowing us for many years. It was the most simple, enjoyable wedding that was pulled out of nothing. I don't regret our decision to cancel and go micro for even one second. I soooo wish someone would have grabbed hold of me and told me before i began planning that you really don't need it all. As a bride to be you get swept up in a it all. My Micro wedding was no different to my large wedding just smaller. We had 30 guests including myself and my husband and our 3 children. We had to make sacrifices when it came to guests and keep things to immediate friends and family but no one minded as they understood. After all it was our love story and I'm so thankful we managed to have it. I look back on my fantastic wedding photos and I all I see is happy smiles, a slight drowned looking bride at times but one truly happy Husband & Wife!
Who is here to judge? Don't feel like you can't just get married because you might upset old Aunt Maybel on your fathers side twice removed who you see once every 2 years. Thankfully weddings are going ahead again, so go right now give your notice and marry your soul mate. You won't regret it I promise! As a wedding photographer all I want to do is capture the love. Not the grandest venue or the most expensive dress, just you both on a day that brings you happiness.
(*Photos captured by the wonderful Steph Newton photography, Catering supplied by Rebecca Green Catering, Styling Effortless Elegance by Holly Louise, Music by Richard Toomer, Bouquet by Floral Couture. Weymouth/Dorset suppliers.