Wedding Planning

A photographers view

So we are days away from Christmas, and only 5 months from our wedding day!!! We have been very busy these past 9 months with wedding planning, making decisions and securing our favourite suppliers. To my surprise some of the suppliers I thought were safe to book just a few months before the big day were already booked up over a year ahead so when you know what you want get it booked!

I wanted to put another blog together about our wedding to tell you everything I have learned on our planning journey so far, and to tell you about some of our fantastic suppliers of course.

Let’s start with…

The Dress!

I started looking early on in the planning process as I knew it would be hard to find a something a little different. The wonderful Cara who owns ‘Story of my dress‘ has the perfect business and dress selection. She hand picks vintage dresses for brides to redesign and change as they wish. Alongside these wonderful old dresses she has also created her own line of wedding dresses that are so cool I could rave about them all day! I had actually been following Cara’s work for a few years before I got engaged so when I spotted her stand at a wedding fair at our venue, I just knew it was meant to be.

The best piece of advice I can give you as a wedding photographer to a bride would be don’t be too precious about your dress on the day. No matter how big, glamorous or boho the design of the dress is don’t worry about it getting a little dirty on your wedding day, it happens to every bride and it’s all part of the fun. It will almost certainly collect dust, maybe a few leaves and possibly even the odd bug but you must embrace it! Head out in any weather and get some awesome photos with the love of your life, the marks and stains on your dress are all part of the story.


Images by a selection of talented photographers for Story of my dress

Our Venue

The very first thing we booked was our venue and, as I mentioned in my last blog about our wedding, this will always be the first thing for a couple to book. Without a venue you don’t have a confirmed date to send any other potential suppliers. After a long search for a unique venue that offered great photo opportunities, could offer us a legal ceremony and wasn’t going to break the bank we found East Quay Venue.

East Quay is a unique beach side venue in Whitstable, Kent. Obviously, the beach was a huge plus but we picked the venue because it had a wonderful look and layout inside at a great price. There are so many beautiful venues out there, it can be difficult to know where to start. My advice would be to decide what your priorities are and what style of wedding you would like (if you know). Use this to help narrow down your search. There are great wedding sites out there now where you can search for venues based on price, location and style so take full advantage of what the internet can offer.


Some images taken by other talents photographers for East Quay Venue

Our Photographer

Straight after booking our venue I got straight onto the photography. Being a wedding photographer myself I knew how far in advance we get booked up, so I wasn’t going to miss out on our favourite by leaving it too late. Everyone I have spoken to about our wedding has said how hard it must have been for me to choose a wedding photographer but honestly I think I have had a huge advantage. I know the different styles of photography out there and already follow lots of blogs and inspiration sites as part of my business, so I see lots of different photographer’s work pop up every day.

It was through a Rock My Wedding blog that I spotted Darina Stoda, a super talented photographer who’s style instantly stood out to me. We met and had a chat about our wedding and looked through more of Darina’s work. We knew then that we wanted to book her. We have since had an engagement session with Darina, which I loved!

As I always say to couples who get in touch with me, it is so important that you feel comfortable with your photographer as they will be with you all day. Meet your photographer early on, chat about everything and anything and take them along to check out your venue too.


Dog Sitter

The image above is of our little pooch, Bonnie who had great fun joining us on our engagement session. She will also be a part of our wedding day. Although she won’t be with us at the venue, she will spend the week in Whitstable with us and will be with me on the morning of our wedding. I am planning on a few cute shots just the two of us once I’m in the dress, can’t wait!

As all of our nearest and dearest will be with us all day we had to do a little research into dog sitting companies to make sure she would still get a couple of good walks and have some company until we return that night.

It is certainly getting more and more popular to have fury friends join couples on their big day so I thought it may be helpful to share what we found with you. We came across Animal Aunts, a great company who have sitters across the UK. They not only walk and take care of your animals for the whole day, but they can also bring them along to your wedding at any point. They can stay for as long as you want them to be there for photos or to walk down the aisle, before taking them home again. Definitely a great company to check out if you are planning to have your furry friends with you on your big day.

Hair & Makeup

I have also picked a hairdresser and make-up artists, both of whom are local to me, so I am very lucky they are willing to travel to Kent for the big day. The lovely Rebecca Wilcox was very patient with me while I struggled to make a decision on my hairstyle. She tried a couple of different looks and talked me through the options for each until I finally picked one and it’s perfect.

Emma Shepherd is the amazing make-up artist that I have booked, I became aware of her work when we worked on a wedding together last year. I knew I wanted air brush make-up and not only did Emma offer it, but I had seen it on another bride and how amazing it looked all day long.


The Wedding Rings

The last thing I really, really, really want to tell you about is our wedding ring workshop!!! I had known about Rachel Jeffery’s jewellery school for a few years after seeing her on one of Kirsty Allsopp’s wonderful craft shows. Making each other’s wedding rings always seemed like such a meaningful and personal thing to do and would make the rings a real heirloom, passed down from generation to generation. The workshop was amazing, we had so much fun and managed to make the rings from start to finish with just Rachel’s incredible knowledge and guidance to help us through.

If you like a challenge, trying something new and creative then I would definitely recommend this workshop!


There are a few other things we have booked but to tell you about them now would certainly spoil the surprise for our guests, so I will give you all the details after our wedding.

Even though we have got lots booked and planned we still have, lots to do and January is looking pretty busy with “wedmin”. Fingers crossed we will be pretty much done by March, so we can enjoy the build up to our big day stress free.

Despite all the wedding planning going on I would love to hear from any couples getting married in 2019 & 2020 who are still looking for their perfect wedding photographer. Get in touch for more information xx