Stylish Spa Hotel Wedding
I was delighted when Sophie and Jamie booked me to photograph their stylish Spa Hotel wedding in mid-May of 2019. They were having their ceremony at St James’s Church in Tunbridge Wells, followed by their reception in the Spa Hotel’s Royal Suite.
The Bridal Suite
The bridal suite is a large room dominated by the gorgeous French style, blue-covered antique bed. It also has a small balcony that overlooks the hotels’ beautiful grounds.
Sophie was mid-make-up, with Laetitia Rix of Makeup Angel when I arrived for the bridal preparations, and her bridesmaids were having their hair done by Liz Bower of Simply Beautiful Wedding Hair. I started the day as I often do, documenting Sophies details, dress and jewellery and her beautiful flowers from The Floral Workshop. At this time of the day, I generally keep a discreet distance and take everything in. I loved the moments when the girls exchanged gifts, bracelets for the bridesmaids and a Wifey t-shirt for Sophie, plus a lovely gift from Sophie’s sister. Charlotte had put together a scrapbook of images and messages to the couple, which was a beautiful personal sentiment.
The couple had booked a second photographer, and my friend and colleague Claire Williamson had the job of joining the boys at the church while I was busy with the girls.
Sophie wore a classic lace gown from Isabella Grace Bridal in Tunbridge Wells, and she looked stunning. There was time for a few family photos before heading to the church.
St James’s Church
The bride arrived in a gorgeous vintage Rolls Royce from Distinctly Vintage. I loved the moment when Sophie’s dad draped her veil over her face just before they headed into the church. These are always such precious moments to capture.
St James’s Church is enormous and has a large balcony that makes for some lovely overview photos of the ceremony and the guests while the couple exchange their vows.
I love the moments after the ceremony when the guests file out of the church to greet the couple; this is one of my favourite parts of a wedding day as everyone is so happy and effusive.
Back at the hotel, the couple enjoyed some time with their guests before we tucked into their family group photos. It was important to Jamie to have pictures of his beloved grandparents, and I made sure to capture plenty of those. We then took a walk around the hotel grounds more briefly than I would usually, as, by this point, it had started to drizzle. The couple didn’t let it spoil their day, though, and we made the most of the lovely locations that the Spa Hotel has to offer.
Creative Nightime Photos
Dinner and speeches were followed by the couples first dance to the swing jazz band, Stardust, plus some enthusiastic dancing by the guests, including Jamie’s grandma!
The temple at the Spa Hotel is a fabulous spot for sunset photos, but as we didn’t get a sunset for Sophie and Jamie’s wedding, I asked them if they’d like some creative shots instead. I think they worked out pretty well and were an excellent alternative to the natural light photos they couldn’t have!
What a lovely, fun day Sophie and Jamie’s wedding was; it was an absolute pleasure to be part of.
Venue – The Spa Hotel Tunbridge Wells
Brides Gown – Isabella Grace Bridal
Hair – Simply Beautiful Wedding Hair
Makeup – Makeup Angel
Flowers – Charlotte Mackie of The Floral Workshop
Wedding Car – Distinctly Vintage
Band – Stardust from Alive Network
Cake – Bonneys Cakery
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