Dreamy chateau wedding in wine country, France – Katie + Craig
Woke up this morning to find a blanket of snow had fallen overnight and was making my otherwise currently shabby garden look angelic, like only snow can. It snowed most of the day in between brilliant sunshine. All in all the perfect winter day.
However, today I’m also dreaming of warmer days, of pink sunsets, French wine and pretty chateaux….
When Katie & Craig asked me to be their wedding photographer I was over the moon. Not only had I already shot 3 of their friend’s weddings in 2014, 2015 and 2016, 2 of the couples were also travelling to France to celebrate with them. So, really, I was going to be amongst friends I made sure I grabbed a pic of the 7 of us together, see below!!
Not long after Katie & Craig booked with me one of my best mates, Lucy, got a booking of her own in Italy, for Holly & Damian, literally 3 days before my wedding was going to be held in France! So we decided to travel to the continent together to second shoot for each other, flitting between the 2 countries and getting to see loads more of the areas with our free days while travelling by train & hire car.
Not only were we faced with 2 AWESOME AS EFF weddings, little did we know that we were also facing some severe problems: every single flight was delayed (which meant were too late for a train to Florence so had to fork out for a hotel airport for the night), we lost train tickets, we weren’t booked into one of our pre-booked hotels, we got stuck in a torrential rainstorm, we had to wait hourrrrrs to be let into a hotel, stuff was swiped from Lucy’s bag and she almost lost her phone. It was like the photography gods were testing our every strength!
But, regardless, we had SOOO MUCH FUN at both weddings. Katie & Craig’s wedding was unbelievably beautiful, the location was divine and their guests were brilliant. I don’t think anyone left there without a hangover, but not one of them regretted it! If I hadn’t been driving on the wrong side of the road in a rented car, I’d have definitely had more wine too 😀
Anyway, I will let Katie & Craig tell you more about their gorgeous French wedding in their own words…
We love them thank you so much! Everyone has said what an amazing job you have done and we can't thank you enough!!! - Katie + Craig
OUR FAVOURITE PARTS OF THE DAY
Our favourite part of our wedding day was at dusk. We were alone with Amy having our photos taken in the vineyard when we suddenly noticed the gorgeous sunset. All of our guests were in and around the barn, enjoying the celebrations, but this was something we didn’t want them to miss. Amy estimated that we had about 10 minutes until sundown, so we quickly managed to get everyone to the other side of the chateau for a group photo and an impromptu throwing of the bouquet!
WEDDING PLANNING AND ADVICE
Living in Qatar, arranging fittings in the UK, hand making all the decor/ invitations and planning a wedding in France was a major accomplishment for us (can we add this to our CV?). After many months of planning for the big day we were super excited/ nervous/and anxious in the days leading up to the wedding. We hoped things would to go to plan but ultimately, we just wanted our guest to have a good time.
Since we had our ceremony in France and many of our friends and family were joining us to celebrate, we arranged some optional events. This created a fantastic weekend full of celebrations, which everyone thoroughly enjoyed.
- On the first night, we had drinks and dinner for our close family and friends staying with us in the chateau. This was great because it meant our families and friends could catch up.
- On the second night, we had a buffet and party in the vineyard. They also provided the wine for the entire weekend.
- Then on the 3rd day, we had the BIG DAY!
- On the last day, we had a farewell BBQ at the chateau for all of our guests.
It felt as though a big weight was lifted from our minds when we finally sat down on the plane, finally on our way to France, because we knew that we couldn’t do any more planning! It was all done. Our families were travelling to France two days later, so we had a bit of time to ourselves to relax prior to the celebrations. Katie’s mum, step-dad, brothers and bridesmaids had the responsibility of bringing MANY suitcases filled with wedding décor and, of course, the wedding dress which actually had its own seat on the plane!
We didn’t have any disasters but it did rain quite heavily in the days leading up to the wedding day. We hoped that getting married in France might have helped us to avoid this situation, but we had no such luck. The weather was obviously something that we couldn’t plan! It rained on the morning of wedding and then stopped just in time for the ceremony, meaning that we could still get married outside.
Top tip – keep a spreadsheet of all the vendors that you owe money to, what you have paid and when. This has been very useful for us, especially after the wedding!
WHY WE CHOSE AMY
We originally decided to look at Amy for our wedding photographer as she was highly recommended by many of our friends – she had photographed all of their weddings. When we got in contact with her we were impressed with her professional manner and personal approach to her work. We thoroughly enjoyed working with Amy! We are both camera shy and Amy made us feel totally at ease and, most of the time, we hardly noticed that she was taking pictures of us.
We were blown away with the photographs and the personal touches that she incorporated every step of the way – the photo slideshow, the personalised box including the memory stick for the hundreds of photos taken and, of course, the albums.
OUR FAVOURITE PHOTOS
Gosh so many to choose from, our favourite photos…
- The bouquet toss – we love the sunset, the spontaneity and the excitement captured in this photo.
- The one just after the cermony under the tree – we were so happy and excited to enjoy the rest of the day.
Make sure that you enjoy the day!
It goes so quickly, so spare a moment with each other to take it all in.
ALL THE AMAZING SUPPLIERS
Dress: Galia Lahav
Veil: Browns Bride
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Suit & shoes: King & Allen Tailors
Shoes: Joseph Cheaney
Bridesmaids dresses: Coast
Ushers suits: Reiss
Rings: Kingdom Jewellers Quatar
Cake & catering: Iribane Laurent S.A.R.L.
Make up & hair: Jane Emerson
Wedding planner: Sue Christie, Marry Me In France
Band: Tomorrow Band
Venue: Chateau de Soulac