Aswanley / Suzie + Alan
When you capture someone's wedding you feel a sense of emotion that's hard to convey. You want the best for the couple, you are rooting for them, in some sort of way you fall in love with them. And after the wedding your strange romance comes to an end. You leave them to it. That's why it can be a draining experience working as a wedding vendor - falling in and out of love fifty times a year!
Suzie and Alan won my heart when we had an enquiry meeting at their home back in February 2016. We were getting on great - Suzie likes to talk, I like to listen - perfect! And then she amazed me with these words, "I'm pregnant, but it's not public yet."
Holy shit I thought! That's me vested, you must book me now! And thankfully they did.
Another thread to this story was that of photographer, Jonathan Addie. During that enquiry meeting we spoke about how good he was, and how much I would love to work alongside him (he's such a top bloke).
Shortly afterwards came the devastating news that rocked our local wedding industry - Jonathan was in a serious car crash and fighting for his life. Once again those feelings of being vested surfaced. He was part of this wedding story, and my thoughts & prayers were with him.
Jonathan pulled off an astounding, remarkable recovery - the dude is a superhero! Straight up! I got to see this first-hand as he started second shooting weddings later in the 2016 season, and then on his own again. Losing none of his creative skills, love of films + gadgets, and sense of humour. I haven't told him how much of an inspiration he is, but I guess I now have.
Meanwhile, Suzie and Alan were busy planning their wedding, and of course, welcoming wee Caleb into their world. It was great seeing their pics on facebook - and how fast he was growing.
And by the time the wedding came round, he would be ready to don his kilt - just like daddy!
A first for me was having a hired second shooter on hand to cover the groom prep. Sean from Apricot Tree Films covered the dudes getting ready whilst I got to hang out with the ladies.
Suzie was uber relaxed in the morning, having a chat and laugh with the bridesmaids and beauty vendors. On the boys side, Alan was doing a spot of ironing and dressing Caleb.
Onto the wedding venue, the lovely Aswanley. Oh my goodness. The decor was amazeballs. Since Suzie is a kick-ass florist in her own right, her team of vendors did a cracking job transforming the place. There was details everywhere for the eye to take in and enjoy. I collected a birthday card from the happy couple (it was left in the toilets for me!) - how ace! As the clocked ticked by, the guests arrived and took to their seats. Alan opened his gift from the bride, a kick-ass pocket watch. And then Suzie arrived, in a white VW camper van. Her nerves and excitement visible. Deep breaths, this is it!
The ceremony was full of laughter - mainly due to Suzie laughing at Alan's middle names - I won't reveal, sorry. But it was also full of touching emotions as it came to her vows. Her voice waivering in the moment. Heart pounding. Eyes fixed on Alan.
After the ceremony we were treated to the wedding band performing a two-piece set whilst the family photos were taken. And Jonathan went into creative mode, knocking through various set-ups and poses with the bride + groom around the grounds of Aswanley as the time ticked quickly on.
All three speeches were outstanding - enough to make a grown man cry!
But my favourite part was the evening. Kicking off with the cake-cut, followed by a choreographed first dance. The band were awesome, keeping the dance floor busy with shapes and moves. During the buffet break the carnival came alive! Sparklers, fireworks, hog roast, ice cream parlour, so so cool! Wish I could have stayed on, but alas with a wedding the next day it was time for me to leave.
It was such an honour to be part of Suzie + Alan's (and Caleb's) wedding story, and in a bigger view, their life story! My best wishes and love!
p.s. Alan's middle name is George Michael!
Venue - Aswanley
Photography - Jonathan Addie
2nd Videographer (groom prep) - Apricot Tree Films
Hair - Gemma Taylor
Make-up - Rae Mathieson
Catering - Country Flavours
Fireworks - NJE Fireworks
Transport - Deeside Classic Campers
Childcare - Thank Evans
Cake - Fiona Barnett
Planner - Timeless White Wedding Planning