Modern city wedding at a quirky music venue in Liverpool – Hannah & Jay
One thing that’s difficult for me to do is to pick a favourite from all of the weddings I have ever shot. It’s like a parent being forced to pick their favourite child! Absolutely impossible and totally unfair.
The reason why this happens is because of how much I vibe with my couples before, during and after their big day. Honestly! It’s as simple as that. If we really get along as humans, chances are our aesthetics and attitudes will also be aligned. (For example, I’ve not met many people who laugh at the same stupid things I do that don’t also love Wes Anderson style epic portraits and hilarious non-staged documentary photos.)
If we break it right down and remove the photography element entirely, if you were to book any old photographer from the yellow pages, or Gumtree, or worse Groupon, then you are basically just inviting a stranger to hang around with you, your friends and your family on one of the biggest days of your life! Which NOBODY wants, right!?
So I base my entire work ethic around the importance of connection and friendship and having a laugh. Which is why THIS wedding I’m about to show you is as close to a favourite child that a parent is allowed to have…
Hannah and Jay approached me to shoot their wedding with a completely refreshing format to their day. One of the things they mentioned that really got my attention was that they were travelling home to Liverpool from where they were working in Sweden and hoped to commemorate some of the best parts of Liverpool in their couple photos, without going too stereotypical with the landmarks. This sounded like a perfect job for me as I’m always more interested in capturing hidden gems than the obvious locations.
The great thing was that they wanted to do all of this BEFORE their ceremony for up to 2 hours! Now, for those of you who are new to all this and unaware of how long we photographers usually get for portraits, I will tell you now – it’s usually 30 minutes after the ceremony and maybe an extra 15 minutes at sunset. Which is FINE, I work VERY quickly so I can smash out an incredible set of photos within this time. BUT being offered 2 hours was heavenly to my ears. I was able to plan out a route from their prep location in a cab that wound its way through the gorgeous Georgian Quarter, through the Baltic Triangle, all the way to their ceremony location, Liverpool Town Hall. All the while the couple were able to relax and have fun and be silly with me along the way.
Oh and did I mention, the bride & groom actually got ready together at the same prep, all while still keeping their wedding outfits a total surprise for each other. Hannah disappeared into the bathroom to do her hair and make up while Jay donned his very dapper suit in the beautiful bedroom. Jay headed out to do some groom-duties while Hannah then utilised the quite time to get into her own dress. As she had no bridesmaids I helped zip her in because I am basically an honorary bridesmaid at everyone’s wedding (sometimes an honorary groomsman!!)
The couple then executed one of the cutest “first looks” I have ever seen. It was an absolutely perfect moment, highlighted by the fact that it was totally just for themselves. And when, if not on your wedding day, are you justified in being slightly selfish over some things?? Such a wonderful way to experience that special moment without feeling the eyes of 100 people on your necks.
Funny story alert: During the couples portraits we experienced a lot of sunshine and a lot of wind, as is evident in their photos… but just as we got to the Town Hall the heavens opened and it absolutely lashed down during the service. We had enough time to photograph the family outside the hall before they escaped to the venue to finalise some details before the guests rode up there in a coach… but just as the guests were waiting for the very late coach (which had got caught in Liverpool Pride traffic… oh yes, it was Pride Day too!!) they were all caught under the arches in Exchange Flags as it completely pelted down with the heaviest rain. What a crazy weather day that was!!
Regardless of their ornate ceremony venue, Hannah & Jay were determined to put their unconventional stamp on the rest of the day by having their reception at a very industrial music/gig venue, which turned out to be an amazing juxtaposition in styles.
Finishing the day by bashing a wedding cake shaped pinata instead of cutting an actual wedding cake was definitely (excuse the pun) the cherry on the cake. The cake was filled with sweets, shots and neon wristbands, which went down a storm with the entirely adult congregation.
I’m so excited to now hand you over to Hannah & Jay so they can explain a bit more about their day in their own words…
OUR FAVOURITE PARTS OF THE DAY
We loved spending the wedding morning together, just us two. We are both quite reserved people that don’t love being the centre of attention so it was perfect to just take the time to relax and be with each other before the big events to come.
WEDDING PLANNING AND ADVICE
The planning was actually SO smooth… much more so than we anticipated. Hannah is the ultra organised one and Jay is the laid back one so it was a match made in heaven for planning.
Once we decided on the venues for the ceremony and the party it was then a matter of building “A Vision”. We confirmed a lot of what we already knew we wanted at an early stage, like the photographer and the hotel and flowers.
The most important part for us was that we would feel comfortable with the style and vibe of the day. We are both creative people so did all our own graphics together which saved a lot of money but also made it personal and help set the look we wanted!
- think outside the box when looking for venues – if you don’t ask you won’t get!
- make sure it is personal – it’s YOUR day!
- set your budget and stick to it as best you can, but make sure you check all costs before setting a budget.
- make sure there is enough alcohol!!
- make sure you assign jobs to other people on the day to take the stress off you two.
- just relax and enjoy the day even if something goes wrong – try not to make everything so serious – it will be the best day of your lives!
WHY WE CHOSE AMY
We chose Amy as we knew it was extremely important to get an amazing photographer with the same style and like-mindedness as us. When we met Amy we felt instantly that she would be open to all the different ideas we had for our day and we felt trust from the beginning. We really wanted a documentary-style photographer that would capture everything from the little details to Hannah being clumsy tripping up (which Amy did perfectly).
On the day Amy was perfect to have around and really put us at ease. We are both not lovers of being in front of the camera but with Amy being so relaxed this helped us feel comfortable. We absolutely love all our photographs and when we look back we feel so proud that we managed to pull off such a perfect day. We will truly cherish these photographs forever!
OUR FAVOURITE PHOTOS
It is actually too hard there are so many favourites! We couldn’t pick one so we have picked three!
This one we think is so beautiful with the choice of setting and the wide view capturing so much of the facade with us incorporated (emphasizing the difference in scale).
This one we really like the composition and sophistication. We always dream to live in a house like this so feels like you have captured our wishful future in a photograph.
We feel like this one captures you style of catching the perfect moments so naturally and also the colours and lighting are soft and beautiful.
Never forget that is if your day so make it what you want it to be. You don’t need to follow traditions if you don’t want to – it’s more fun for the guests if there are surprises and the unexpected.
Don’t stress over anything on the day, just relax and try your best to take it all in as it will all over before you know it.
ALL THE AMAZING SUPPLIERS
Bride prep: 2 Blackburne Terrace
Ceremony venue: Liverpool Town Hall
Reception venue: Buyers Club (no longer available)
Dress: designed by bride, made by friend
Veil: Blossom & Bluebird
Shoes: & Other Stories
Flowers: Honey Blush Floral
Cake: DIY pinata (find similar on Etsy)
Cake table: Dafna’s Cheesecake Factory
Hair & Make up: by bride
Stationery: designed by bride & groom
Neon sign: Contempohome
Balloon installation: Beckoration
Ringbox: Clouds & Currents