Top 5 Wedding Destinations

Destination weddings are becoming increasingly popular these days with the ease of travel and low fares to Europe. I have attended weddings in array weird and unusual locations, from cool and picturesque events held with the fjords of Norway providing the backdrop to white sand beaches in Greece. To make it easy for our readers to decide on which location would be best for them, I have decided to put together a list of my top ten wedding locations in Europe. There will be many who will argue that I have left off some of the best but my these are the places that have had the most impact on and provided the best settings for the special of days. We asked Ian Stewart, a photographer we’ve known for quite some time to tell us what he thinks are the top 5 destinations for weddings.

1. Santorini

Without question, the most memorable wedding I have attended was on the white stoned Island Of Santorini. The old town, Fira, is nestled upon the rim of a caldera looking over a huge expanse of water and another smaller crater slap bang in the middle of it. The vistas are out of this world, and the venues are beautiful. Some wedding planning companies offer very competitive rates on the island.

2. Pollensa, Mallorca

When you think of Mallorca, you would be forgiven for thinking it is an island covered in trashy resorts. Fortunately, that is kept in the grubby little enclave that is Magaluf. To the north of the island, you have the town of Pollensa, a perfect spot for a relaxing and reserved wedding. Plentiful options here whether you want your wedding in a villa of a mansion in the hills. A great choice!

3. The Alps

The choice for those who want to combine their wedding with some skiing but also suitable for those who want to spend their day in the cool, crisp climes offered by The Alps. In the summertime, the hills blossom with colourful flowers but for the adventurous, it’s the winter they’ll need to go when the snow-capped peaks are on display and piste is GOOD!

4. The Pyrenees

Stretching from the Atlantic down to The Mediterranean The Pyrenees are something to behold. As well as a beautiful mass of lush hills this mountain range also doubles up as granite border between Spain and France. Clearly, any natural site that covers that diverse range of environments is going to offer something for everyone. A mecca for walkers, it too is a great choice for those who want to combine their wedding day with some activities.

5. Croatia

On the rise, following it’s break up from Yugoslavia in the 90’s this nation has done pretty well out of travellers wishing to take in music festivals that regularly pop up on along its coastline. However, as a destination for weddings, it’s often proved in the past to have a bit of an enigmatic appeal. It recent year that’s changed with Dubrovnik, Split and Plitvice Lakes all proving a hit with couples wishing to get hitched with all the natural beauty and history that Croatia can provide as a backdrop.

Wedding Destination Spotlight: Majorca

With destination weddings proving to be not only more memorable occasions but also the more economically favourable option, we at Wedding Photographers Guide have decided to focus on some of Europes best options for those of you wishing to enter into wedlock on the continent and in style. Our resident photographer Daniel Moore has a few words to share about Majorca.

Many couples have already chosen to enjoy the Balearic beauty of Majorca on their wedding day and who can blame them. This Island is teeming with activities to do, historical sites to check out, great weather and all the amenities you could require to keep all your guests happy. Here are a few standout reasons as to why.

1. Ease Of Travel
It’s just two hours away from the Uk and given Majorca fantastic reputation as a holiday destination over they years we have numerous UK airports to choose from making it a great destination to travel to in both convenience and cost.

2. Activities
While most will wish to relax by the beach before and after the big simply day there will, of course, be some that want to embrace the more adventurous side of the island. Majorca offers something for everyone from scuba diving to rock climbing, historical sites and moderate hikes. With that type of variation, it’s no wonder it’s such a popular destination.

City Spain Boats Majorca Port Ships Palma

3. Venues
From villas nestled away in the hills to beautiful, white stone mansions that have been converted into multi-purpose buildings for events not just restricted to weddings. It’s clear to me that whatever budget you have you will be able to find a great option on the island.

 

A Santorini Wedding

I’ve just returned from a majestic week in the gorgeous island of Santorini. This place is one of hottest around fro destination weddings and today I want to explain why the place ha so much appeal. It is after-all just rock in the middle of the Mediterranean, I mean, does it really justify the hype? I can confirm that it does and here are a few reasons why.

1 – Picture postcard scenes

The sights you will see here are breathtaking. Simply put the images of Santorini will be burned into your memory for the rest of your days. The town is positioned at the highest point on the island providing tourists with incredible views over the caldera of which it is a part of. A caldera is a sunken volcano and Santorini rests on the rim overlooking the huge mass of water before it. Cameras at the ready folks, this is one special place!

2 – That little something extra

While most will be happy to get drunk at the wedding and rest on the beach the rest of their time however there are of course a lot of people who want to get out and about and do some activities. Luckily Santorini offers scuba diving, wine tasting and really interesting trips to excavation sites that seek to discover more about the lost Minoan civilisation that was wiped out by a volcanic eruption.

3 – The Cost

Gone are the days when destination holidays were the sole domain of the affluent. Th ease of travel within the EU, reduced airfares and economic strife along The Mediterranean has created an opening for all in one package holidays that come in at less than the of a decent venue in the UK. When you think about it, it’s a bit of a no brainer!

Words By Steven Brook Wedding Photography

 

3 Tips To Help You Choose Your Wedding Theme

Trying to choose your wedding is one of the most challenging tasks when it comes to planning and organising of your big day. there are so many factors to consider. It needs to convey who you are while also representing that special something that binds your relationship together. Other considerations include the weather, the location and of course the people who will be in attendance. I’ve been to beautiful weddings n Majorca with a tropical feel. They had a pool party, a calypso band and some mambo dancing at the reception. There have also been more refined events in the searing beauty of the Santorini. There are so many options to choose from so hopefully, these tips can help guide you in the right direction.

  1. Look inside yourself!

This about you and your soul mate. Your interests, experiences, your history and your life so let the theme reflect that. Think about when you first met your partner and the things that you most enjoy doing together. It could include adventure travel, Indian food or anything else that falls under the broad nomenclature that is culture. Do that and the decision will become much easier, I promise!

 

2. Location! Location! Location!

The location where you decide to have your wedding will obviously have a major impact on the theme that you choose. Think about this carefully. Be it a lush vineyard in the south of France or a cool, snowy setting in The Alps you’ve got to be sure it will compliment the theme and vice versa. That said any wedding in the places I’ve just mentioned will be sure to be a hit!

3. Ask Family & Friends For Advice

It’s important to include family and friends in the preparation of the big day because they know you best and this is especially the case when it comes to picking your theme. Let them contribute to the school of ideas that will inspire your theme. Ask them about their personal experiences of you as a child and when you were a teen. You never know you might get some pearls of inspiration!

Words By Morag MacDonald @ Documentary Image Wedding Photography

 

 

What’s Behind The Destination Wedding Craze?

If you were to have a look at any of the major wedding publications online, be it Bride book, Hitched or any other site picked from the ever increasing mass of websites covering the area it won’t take you long to find a blog post, article or a report on a couple’s big day spent in some far-flung destination.

The fact is destination weddings have far too many benefits not to be up for consideration by a husband & wife to be. People want their big day to be special and to live long in the memories of all the guests in attendance and what better way to do it than to take them all off to some beautiful venue in the verdant Pyrenees or to the white isle of Santorini nestled on the crest of a sunken Caldera.

Not only will the picturesque surroundings contribute to the occasion but the option to create a theme that matches the location can easily lift the wedding to a whole new level. We’ve seen rustic themed weddings in the vineyards of France, to elegant and refined events in beautiful villas in Spain. The possibilities really are endless, and that’s before we come to the primary motivator towards to choosing to have a destination wedding and that is THE PRICE!

For the price of a decent wedding venue in the UK, you could easily cover an all-in-one package in Spain. That includes catering, the venue hire, the music and more importantly the wedding planner after all you don’t want to get stuck trying use Google translate when trying to order your cake for the big day.

It never used to be this cheap of course but with the advent of cheap flights and economic strife across The Mediterranean a new industry for affordable weddings was born. When weddings can be this easy to organise the age-old stress of organising your big day can easily be replaced by a relaxing holiday culminating in a stroll up the aisle with a nice & natural tan and in the company family & friends who are all in holiday mode. So why not give it a go?

Words by Jenny @ Indigo & Violet

Tips On Choosing The Right Cake For You

Getting the right cake for your wedding is a job that I slow on the list of priorities. After all, the venue, dress and decor will no doubt be taking up much more of your time. That said, it is still important that the wedding cake looks great, tastes delicious and if possible doesn’t break the bank. That last point may be a step too far given the astronomical costs when it comes to purchasing wedding services.

We have decided to put together a few pointers that will help you ensure this not too important detail of the wedding still delivers!

1. Collaboration Can Work
This may sound a bit out there but why not ask your florist to communicate with your cake designer to see if they can find some commonality in their approach. This can help feed into the overall theme of the wedding and give the day a little bit of a special touch.

2. Put It On Show
Instead of keeping the cake hidden away why not put it on display so everyone can see it throughout the day. After all you will Have spent a considerable amount of money on it and it will no doubt look the part. It will be a nice addition to the overall setting of the reception area.

3. What To Put On Top
Unless you’re going for some retro style plastic models of the bride and groom topping, and let’s be honest, why would you? Then you can go for a more charming approach like a ginger-bread man or a delicate set of ribbons.

4. Save Some For After
There is always some cake left over at the end, and most couples will want to save it to enjoy at a later date. I’ve even heard of couples keeping a cake until their first anniversary, eeeewwww!! I can guarantee that the idea is better in the mind than it is on the tongue. By all means save it but make sure you consume it no later 2/4 weeks after the wedding.

Words By Jay Emme Wedding Photography Birmingham

WEDDING GAMES IDEAS TO KEEP YOUR GUESTS HAPPY!

Let’s face it: you’ll be much too busy posing for photos to keep your guests happy. Impressive decor, photo booths, wedding reception games and other fun touches can be great ways to outsource that particular responsibility.

Photobooths
Photo booths are great, but perhaps you have thought ways of making it appeal to your guests in unique and exciting ways. You’ll find many different ways to get them chatting with each other, while your guests are taking photos.

Wedding reception games that are sophisticated

Games may be an easy strategy to entertain guests, and we’ve seen getting-to-know-you games get great traction with wedding goers however maybe choosing a game with a bit more style can add a certain je ne sais quoi.

An excellent seating chart
All guests have to find out where they are seated at your reception, and unfortunately, this process is usually more disorganised than fun. Why not try and create a lovely experience for the guests? We love guests finding their place card, and leaving behind a Polaroid picture of themselves before they’re seated. This hack that is tricky doubles as a fun seating experience for an easy, visual strategy and your guests to remember.

Use a wedding app that is social to talk about moments

(Shameless plug alert!) Everyone has a smartphone these days, and it is possible that they’ll be Instagramming their favourite moments and try to look up their fellow guests on Facebook. Why not make it easy to allow them to get to understand each other and share your wedding moments using a personal wedding app?

A special drink pairing or tasting
Booze is always a great strategy to get people more social but why not add a twist and also make it a little more interesting? Get an expert in your favourite alcohol to hold pairing or a tasting for the guests. Keep a Scotch and chocolate pairing in case the groom is a scotch aficionado. Other great ideas could be a wine and cheese pairing, or a speciality beer tasting (for all you hipsters out there).

A spectacular send-off
Don’t underestimate the energy of a spectacular send-off. Once guests are riding high on a night of dancing and drinks (open bar, right?) sending you off in style could be a fun way to end the night.

 

Words By Steve Walton Wedding Photography

The best way to Really Have A Little and Cozy Wedding

Gareth Newstead is a photographer who has been on our radar for quite some time. He has always come across as professional and someone who deeply cares about the industry in which he plies his trade. As such, he is an untapped source of advice on all things weddings. In this article he gives you, the reader, some tips on how to have a  cosy wedding.

Need to maintain your guest list to the size that is smaller? Read our suggestions to have an intimate occasion right here.

Many couples agree attendance numbers are an issue at wedding parties. Fewer individuals can mean a party that is private. There is more time for the groom and the bride to pay for their guests, the group truly gets to understand one another, and everyone leads to the occasion in her or his very own manner. Parties that are cozy, it appears, have particular advantages.

Restrict the Guest List

Perhaps you have discovered yourself agonising within the guest list believing, who’s so and so? Not needing to deal on their big day with a sea of unknown faces, some couples decide to restrict their lists, concurring that a smaller party can create a more cozy setting.

Now the tough part: Your families may protest when you inquire further to cut parts of these lists down to the lean-and-mean few who matter. And, of course, your partner as well as you must prepare yourself to do the same. This might mean being forced to explain to friends who anticipated they would not receive an invitation to be there. There are no simple ways to get around this, except to be entirely truthful. Tell your buddies that you are only keeping the occasion small and as such are forced to have a restricted list, but be ready for the occasional distressed feelings.

 

 

Bonus: There are all those creative alternatives places when you do not want to accommodate many guests. There are settings with exquisite views, rustic ranches, cosy cottages, posh private clubs, excellent eateries and gardens, elaborate or natural.

Party On

This can be an alternative for couples who discover themselves guilt ridden with the idea of cutting guests. Whether an intimate service is the most significant, it is possible to create a different, bigger guest list for the reception—only notify your guests of the musical arrangements. You may decide to have a big, accidental celebration a month approximately following your wedding, in the event you’d like the complete occasion to be cozy. Apparently, this means paying for another occasion, but it might be interesting to possess a larger crowd assembled in a more comfortable setting—call it a housewarming for those who have moved into a new residence.

Destination Weddings

Make use of the few of your closest and dearest for your edge: Take over a hostel outside in the mountains or let an organisation of bungalows on the shore. Stretching out the festivities to four or three days of branching, skiing and relaxing all adds as much as a beautiful destination wedding—and an opportunity to actually bond along with your guests.

 

Keep your Smaller Funds

You may determine that the four-course dinner for 50 is a lot better than cake and punch for 100. Some couples have cut at their guest lists to the bare minimum so that you can optimize their budgets. It becomes a choice between cutting the list in half and having everything just how you see the day or cutting corners so that you can have 150 guests.

 

Handle Your Guests Nicely

You are given the opportunity actually to go all out at a little wedding. Guests might stay in a luxury hotel, or your rehearsal dinner may be more complicated and occur in a wine cellar using a wine-pairing for every class. Keeping things modest means the additional details, like supplying limo service, gift baskets that are jam-packed and six -course feasts for the visitors, are suddenly more reachable. Believe boxes of chocolate the most efficient champagne, rather than one truffle as opposed to sparkling wines and luxury arrangements of orchids and roses as much as a person’s eye can see.

 

Pay Focus On the Details

They could be inclined not to engage a wedding consultant when a couple is planning a little wedding. But take it from us—smaller isn’t interchangeable with more straightforward. Every detail is found, so focus on detail is called for, when the wedding is little. There is no hiding supporting the group in a modest party—snafus that may have gone undetected with 200 people will be clear with 50 guests and below.

 

Allow it to be Amusing

This may be getting a smaller wedding, the best part: With fewer individuals on the scene, it is an easy task to get everyone in action. Based how little the occasion will probably be, you could have everyone read a line of a prayer or a unique reading in the service, ask them to stand and encircle you as you exchange your vows, let them sit at one large table in the wedding reception, or have everyone attend the rehearsal dinner.

Kids at Weddings

We all know they can cause chaos sometimes while on other occasions they can be a joy to watch. We wanted to hear Ian Bursill‘s thoughts on haveing kids at weddings and as you can see from the words below he has certainly had plenty of experience.

It’s safe to say that all grownups involved in the wedding day see it as a truly special occasion. It’s one of the largest (if not THE biggest) day in partners lives. So if adults see the day that way, then just imagine how it’s for children of ages involved.

I recall giving among my sisters the mix of dread as well as away at the tender age of only 14 & delight made for one really nervous but happy child.

At most of the weddings I document, there are children a darn sight younger than 14 who are involved in highly important jobs on the day as bridesmaids, flower girls, page boys and ushers. At a particular wedding I coated several years past – the best man proved to be a young lad of around 11 whose father was the bridegroom – and yes, his speech was brilliant and had the guests in tears.

As you’ll see in the images posted here, having kids offers me something different as a photographer. I’ll provide some advice for couples in the stages of planning their weddings how to adapt & entertain these small guests. In change, you’ll take back some significant ‘grown up’ time in case you permit their children to be brought by them.

Use colouring books and put them on the dining table to be used during the wedding breakfast. This was and is still a winner for my two girls and keeps them cheerfully occupied throughout meal instances outside.

The children eat and can sit together. In supervising the small ones, parents can take turns, or you could hire some childminders to aid.

In case the dining room isn’t big enough, ask your place should they have another room for the children to eat in – this would need to be supervised by childminders.

A special wedding at Seftom Park

Every once in a while we like to highlight what we think are standout weddings. For this one we have asked Cambridge wedding photographer Peter Oliver to share a few words on a recent wedding he has shot.

I adore nearly every single day at the Palm House. I walk my dog around the park. When you get a beautiful and easy going couple like Mike and Kate you know you are in for an excellent evening. Mikes and Kate is one of a long sequence of buddies weddings I have photographed. I first shot Gavin and Tam ’s exciting wedding at Inglewood Way. Next, I shot Soul and Neha ’s wedding that was fantastic. Then Emma and Femi ’s elegant equestrian wedding at Haslington Hall. It’s excellent to see a lot of preceding partners and be welcomed as an old friend.

There is plenty of room and lots of sunshine (which professional wedding photographers adore) and lots of wine (which brides and bridesmaids love). Kate had a comfortable morning which was lovely; it had been interesting showing the story in graphics and getting it.

I was long overdue a catch up with Mike in the Cathedral of St Matthew and St James Hill and we certainly made the most of the time we had.Mike and Kate had a wonderful, warm and friendly service by one Joe, of the parishes old priests.

St James and Saint Matthew is an English Heritage Grade – II listed building that is stunning. Its original stained-glass windows were destroyed by means of a bomb blast during world war two and replaced with clear glass. This means the light inside this cathedral is delightful for wedding pictures. I was able to catch their wedding service magnificently.

Once the service was finished, we all made our way for
Sefton Park wedding reception.

I’ve shot at several Sefton Park weddings in both summer and winter. Both it and the surrounding Sefton Park change from month to month, but it’s always clean and looking like new. Kate’s wedding went far too fast for me, as is always the case when you enjoy everything you are doing. I’d photographed the party as well as their first dance, and it was absolutely the perfect day in their perfect location.