I’ve said it several times this year “I’m always lucky with weather”. Despite shooting 30+ weddings in the wettest summer Kent has ever seen I’ve only got wet once this year. But when Carly and Graham said they were having an outdoor wedding in mid September I was a little apprehensive. Of course I needn’t have worried. The day was bright and fair, the guys roasted in the suits and Carly looked amazing in her fabulous dress.
Of course with 5 bridesmaids who aren’t yet teenagers in big dresses and a 3 year old pageboy things could have got a little hectic. Fortunately, all were very well behaved, everything went off without a hitch and the clothes survived relatively unscathed.
Open air weddings aren’t actually allowed in the UK. The rules for “approved premises” say that they have to be “readily identifiable premises” and specifically rule out the open air, tents, marquees and other temporary structures. Like a lot of civil venues in Kent, Hempstead House have a purpose built gazebo in a little courtyard for their weddings. Enclosed enough to be licensed for marriages, open enough that the best men and Ron, father of the bride, would have got pretty wet on a rainy day.
Another quirk of the civil wedding rules in the UK is that alcohol cannot be served in the place where the ceremony will take place for at least one hour before the ceremony. Fortunately for the guests there is no such rule after the ceremony….
And then, just as we thought the day couldn’t get any better, the sun dropped a little and started to do its magic just behind the fountain at the front of the hotel.
Of course a whole day is a very long time to keep a party dress clean. Especially when like Grace you’re 6 and there’s a pink chocolate fountain within reach……
Just before I left, there was time for the first dance. Carly and Graham danced in front of their friends to “Amazing” by Lonestar