London wedding at The Asylum and Amadeus Centre

best documentary wedding photography

Peckham Asylum Wedding

The Asylum is a unique and quirky wedding venue in Peckham, London that I've shot at many times. Its incredible aesthetic means it can host both chilled fun weddings and also more alternative weddings. Today's post features an elegant Belgian wedding that started in the Warrington Hotel. The Warrington Hotel is a beautiful boutique hotel pub with a small number of gorgeously decorated rooms. After the bride got ready with her family, they all zipped over to The Asylum in Peckham for the ceremony

London wedding at The Asylum

The couple opted to have a ceremony delivered by a friend, along with speeches from a multitude of close friends and family from different parts of their life. They also had a ring warming ceremony where each ring was passed through the hands of all the guests and blessed with their love and well wishes. They had a folk guitarist performing between some of the heartfelt speeches

Bistrotheque wedding reception

After the ceremony they had brief drinks at The Asylum before boarding a bus to their first reception venue the Bistrotheque which is a hidden away restaurant specialising in oysters- a Belgian favourite!

At the Bistrotheque they also had their best people deliver some speeches and had a caricaturist entertain the guests, along with customised mint favours before every collected their table plan name card to take to the Amadeus Centre for the wedding dinner.

Amadeus Centre wedding

The Amadeus Centre is a two room venue that was decorated with an abundance of fairy lights and elegant greenery by florists Hattie Fox. the bride and groom opened the dinner with their speech, before the parents gave speeches between the mains and the croquembouche dessert.

Whilst the catering staff turned the main dinner room around into a dancefloor, the guests all went downstairs to enjoy a live band John Bull & the Bandits.

London wedding party

After the upstairs room was cleared, the couple had their stunning first dance under the blanket of fairy lights

An Italian-Lebanese Old Marylebone Town Hall wedding at Singer Tavern

barbican wedding

Old Marylebone Town Hall wedding

Pauline and Fabio had a fantastic low key but personalised wedding in London, with the ceremony at the Old Marylebone Town Hall and a reception at an effortlessly stylish restaurant- the Singer Tavern. They started the day debunking tradition by getting ready together at a trendy artistic airbnb they hired in Shoreditch. The wedding prep airbnb was even more stunning then they anticipated with two large rooms for them to get ready separately, and a grass wall private garden where they had their first look. Pauline's dress was lovingly made by her mum and her make up was done by her bridesmaid Ink & Paper London, who also did their stationery and custom neon photobooth sign! Fabio wore gorgeous flamingo socks and a tie with mini skulls on and was helped by his best woman.

Fabio is a huge fan of vintage classic cars, so they hired a beautiful red soft top to drive to take a few couple shots around the Barbican, one of their (and mine!) favourite pieces of architecture in London. I've shot a few Barbican weddings in their famous greenhouse and love the brutalist external!

Old Marylebone Town Hall wedding

After the couple shoot they drove themselves to their wedding ceremony at the Old Marylebone Town Hall. They had an Italian pianist Antimo Magnotta playing some instrumentals to entertain the guests whilst they waited, and their friend Gabriela of Gabsign Jewellery who made the rings was the ring bearer during the ceremony

Singer Tavern Wedding

After the Old Marylebone Town Hall wedding ceremony, the couple drove their classic car to the Singer Tavern, whilst their guests rode a double decker bus. The Singer Tavern is a stunning old Singer sewing factory/shop that has been converted into a restaurant. Fabio and Pauline asked florists Petal & Pot to decorate the restaurant, although it didn't need too much as it has beautiful natural light, retro green tiles and old brickwork in the basement bar.

The couple hired a magician, Brendan Patrick who was amazing at entertaining their guests during the drinks and canapes reception.

London restaurant wedding

Fabio and Pauline have lots of extremely close friends that they love dearly, everyone was so happy at the wedding the festivities started earlier than usual and lots of the guests started dancing to the pianist before dinner!

Pauline and Fabio, breaking the mould of another tradition gave their speech together, along with speeches from their parents, cousin and best woman.

After the speeches and dinner everyone went down to the basement to enjoy the vintage gramophone DJ called Auntie Maureen and to cut the delicious cake that was made by Sucre A La Creme. The basement of the Singer Tavern has a stunning cocktail bar, with rustic brickwork and original Singer branding. There's enough space for everyone to dance like crazy and even impromptu ceilidhs!

Four day Islington Town Hall wedding + epic weekender Widcombe Grange wedding

bohemian wedding ceremony

*Thank you to the couple for giving me permission to use this selection of photos*

Islington Town Hall wedding

Where do we start with this brilliant couple? When I met them in Soho I really hoped they would book me for their Islington Town Hall wedding ceremony and epic weekender Widcombe Grange wedding in Somerset. We chatted about the festivals they'd been to and I could see very quickly that they love to laugh together and have a real zest for life. I met them for their civil ceremony to do the legal bits with some of their friends. They held the legal ceremony in the Mayor's Room of Islington Town Hall, which is suitable for smaller wedding parties. I've shot so many Islington Town Hall weddings but in five years I think this was the first time I'd shot in this room!

Widcombe Grange wedding welcome drinks

Days later, I headed down to Somerset to shoot the three days at Widcombe Grange. We started with some relaxed welcome drinks and as the couple's immediate family were staying on the grounds, their family enjoyed some pool time. Some of the guests had a go at lawn croquet and some other games like frisbee, table tennis and badminton. This is the upside of weekender weddings for me, getting to shoot interesting and creative family portraits in a documentary style. It is so so important to tell the fuller story around the wedding, as weddings are about the people! I love seeing people practising their speeches, seeing the dynamics between couples... it all means I get a good understanding of how to shoot the main day's action.

Widcombe Grange wedding: The bohemian outdoor ceremony

On the main day, the couple got ready on site: Widcombe Grange is an old private estate. The groom and his friends set up the ceremony space in the morning- the beauty of having a personal ceremony on private land is that you can choose exactly where you want to share that special moment. They decided to set up a gorgeous heavy wooden frame, decorated with gorgeous flowers, in front of a stunning warm Autumnal tree. The couple bought several persian style rugs in red and blue and laid these out to form the ceremony space and the aisle. They then completed the look with decorations of wicker love seats and Moroccan lamps.

The bride wore a simply stunning diamante backed dress, with a very delicate light floaty skirt. The groom got ready in the living room downstairs with a few of his closest friends.

The ceremony was conducted by two of the couple's dearest friends, and personal words were read by friends, the groom's niece sang a song which reduced some of the guests to tears, and the bride and groom exchanged touching vows.

 

After the ceremony the couple were congratulated by emotional loved ones and all the guests moved to the front of Widcombe Grange for drinks, traditional lawn games and amazing canapes provided by Milkshed Catering.

The couple has also provided a temporary tattoo station for their friends to enjoy! Which definitely got more utilised as people got more drunk towards the end of the night.

After a short drinks reception, the couple headed to the white open sided marquee for dinner. The couple, best man and bride's father gave speeches, followed by an impromptu bride's speech where she shared a fun story of a skiing holiday she and a guest had gone on.

After dinner they had a surprise for the guests of DIY coffee martinis, which added a bit of fun action as each table tried to up the stakes on the cocktail shaking!!

By the time dinner had finished it started to get darker so everyone moved towards the barn where two bars and the DJ were set up. There was also a vintage photobooth in a camper van, the temporary tattoo and glitter station and marshmallow toasting by the fire to make smores!

Widcombe Grange wedding... The morning after

So after what can safely be described as an epic wedding day, the guests came back to Widcombe Grange for the most obvious activity for hungover and potentially still drunk people... archery. That's right, pointy dangerous things. Let's do this! Bloody Marys, more pool time, a burger station. What a way to end a totally unique, incredible wedding of two truly free wonderful humans!

hungover wedding guests

flamingoes in pool

bloody mary

creative photojournalism

archery wedding

wedding archery

archery wedding

saying goodbye wedding

wedding guests hugging

creative photography

creative documentary photography

archery at wedding

 

A musical London Islington Town Hall wedding and party at The Depot

musical wedding

Islington Town Hall Wedding

Steph and Ricky are a fabulously fun couple who I was very excited to shoot for as they had the perfect level of fun and chill in their wedding approach. They planned to have their wedding ceremony at my favourite London wedding registry office, Islington Town Hall, before moving their guests onto the casual urban bar and restaurant venue The Depot. I started the day with Steph, her parents and her bridesmaids getting ready in an airbnb rental, she was helped into her dress by her friend Anna who owned a bridal shop and her hair and make up was by Lipstick and Curls. Steph wore a gorgeous soft toned floral embroidered dress with a tulle skirt. The bridesmaids got into their matching baby pink dresses and we all jumped in taxis to The Vineyard bar opposite Islington Town Hall, where I met Ricky and his family. Ricky wore a fabulous dark blue checked suit with bright yellow button holes. After the lovely Islington Town Hall wedding ceremony Steph, Ricky and I wandered around the local area for some quick photos, before heading to the Depot

The Depot Wedding Venue

The Depot is a dark warm industrial style wedding venue that was beautifully decorated with greenery by Grace & Thorn, family-made bunting and personalised signs punning the couple's surnames. Steph's brother Jonny's company We Are Flamingo designed the orders of service, coasters with a custom Steph and Ricky face design on, readings and website. Some of the guests dressed up with traditional boater hats to hand out alcoholic ice lollies from We Are Pops during the drinks reception. Their dinner was a standing BBQ buffet by Big Roast, after which they had Crosstown doughnuts, delicious wedding cake and a few speeches including a bride's speech from Steph.

Musician's wedding

Steph is a talent agent and Ricky and his best man were in the band The Ruskins, so there was a running theme to the wedding reception of music and performance. After the speeches the couple themselves performed a special song, and their friends then took over an open mic night with loads of singing, including from Steph's choir The Adam Street Singers and two thirds of Ricky's band!

 

Marianne Chua.

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