Unique bohemian Jewish wedding festival

Unique bohemian Jewish wedding festival

I was absolutely delighted to shoot for this couple, having photographed the bride several times before as a celebrant and wedding guest, and even more excited when I heard about their incredibly unique plans. Rachel is a storyteller who works on the festival circuit, so it was fitting that Ben and Rachel chose to really customise their entire bohemian wedding festival. For them, the wedding started from the day before, when a handful of their close friends and family joined them to help set up the DIY elements of their wedding. Their friends and family helped them to make colourful fabric bunting and put up the signposts. Wildstems created their beautiful rustic floristry for the tables. Their caterers Red Moon Roots were an integral part of the wedding, staying on site with us and providing nourishment throughout, including watermelon breaks between learning the songs for the main ceremony day. We were blessed with incredible perfect weather as we set up our tents and worked until it was dinner time served around the campfire. Ben and Rachel also arranged for a surprise ice cream van to treat their friends and family and surprise vegan marshmallows for the evening campfire.

    

 

Weekender Festival wedding

This won't be the first time I've camped for a weekender festival wedding, and I love staying on site to be able to document a full story beyond the usual wedding traditions. In the morning Ben had a private and intimate Tisch at a ruined church in Clophill, whilst Rachel spent the morning at her Kabbalat Panim.

Outdoor Jewish wedding ceremony

Ben wore a brilliant dark teal suit whilst Rachel wore a white jumpsuit by Yashka Moore and epic golden headdress decorated with moons and hamsas, inspired by traditional Jewish headdress and custom made by Isla Campbell. Their ceremony consisted on many unique touches. They used an "entwine mobile" to take family to the ceremonial tree, they were led in a song and dance processional to meet the couple half way up the path to all continue to the outdoor ceremony space. When they met half way along the path, Rachel wore a ceremonial garment which guests has tied prayers to beforehand. The ceremony itself took place under a gorgeous Chuppah created amongst the tree itself, and the couple did several Jewish wedding traditions such as smashing the glass, reading the ketubah and circling each other.

After the ceremony they had a short canapés and drinks reception during which they had an opening speech from friends and hamotzi.

They also had a first round of ceilidh from the Ceilidh Liberation Front.

All of their amazing food was vegan and sourced ethically and their cake was decorated with chocolate hedgehogs by friends, between the courses they had speeches from both sets of parents, followed by two rounds of open mic cabaret from their super talented friends.

The Ceilidh Liberation Front worked together with Rachel and Ben to create a very special version of a traditional Jewish dance the Briogus Tanz was normally danced by the mother-in-laws as a pantomime of "anger and reconciliation", but they had everyone get involved and had a lot of fun with it, including a dance move where they took turns to make scary faces at each other!

After the last ceilidh they had a second round of cabaret performances and the after dinner blessings, followed by the cutting of the beautiful hedgehog cake!

Their final dance party was played by The Turbans, who had come straight overnight from Glastonbury Festival!

If you loved this epic Jewish bohemian wedding festival, feel free to check out this fun festival wedding or this DIY festival wedding. I specialise in weekender weddings both in the UK and in destination wedding locations!

A floral English Garden wedding

wedding beer pong

An English Garden Wedding

A back garden wedding is amongst my favourite wedding types because it combines a personal and meaningful space where everything in the background can be included in the photos, there's often lots of personal DIY touches, and couples have a lot more freedom to plan their wedding exactly as they like it! Andrew and Sarah got married in Sarah's childhood home which has a stunning garden her parents horticultural-savvy parents proudly took care of, that also backs onto rustic woodlands. Whilst Sarah got ready in one of the rooms her family helped the wedding planners Blue Bay Events set up the ceremony and reception spaces, with her mum and aunt taking care of the custom green arch.

 

The weather was really playing up for us, with it being touch and go into the last 15 mins as to whether we could have their dream outdoor ceremony. Luckily we took the risk and got to have the perfect outdoor wedding ceremony! Sarah's singing teacher performed a few songs, and they completed the ceremony by joining soil from their respective families into one new rose bush that they will then plant in their new shared home together.

After the ceremony they had reception drinks next to the pool with a performance from Porcapizza, a musician who performs of instruments made of random junk objects.

 

They held their dinner in a marquee with speeches, beer pong and sunshine and rainstorms interlacing the courses!

   

For their first dance Sarah's singing teacher performed with her band, and in the middle of their set both Andrew and Sarah got up and sang! For some reason I shoot a lot of weddings with bride and groom singing!

If you love this English garden wedding check out this DIY Kentish garden wedding or if you love great floristry check out this wedding at the Royal Horticultural Halls

Super fun London Morden Hall wedding

wedding piñata

Happy couple!

"Marianne is THE BEST!!! She was so funny and nice to hang out with on the day, made sure we got the shots we wanted, (and even made sure I ate a snack before the ceremony) was organised about who needed to be where and when, but also she has a real gift for capturing the unexpected- turning up just at the right time to capture such fleeting moments so perfectly. She caught our 'vibe' on camera utterly brilliantly, we were so delighted when we got our photos back. The *many* photos we received were gorgeously edited and presented, and we LOVED the slide show she put together- it really told the story of our day- no need for a videographer! There were loads of non-stagey emotional realness shots which is exactly what we wanted, but also the more formal and traditional romantic photos were gorgeous too- full of colour and energy. Would definitely recommend working with the lovely Marianne!" - This lovely bride

Morden Hall wedding photographer

I cannot believe this fantastic South London wedding venue Morden Hall is so close to my house and this is the first time I'd been there! Kerazy! And what a way to be introduced to it through these two amazing people Alex and Jasmine. When I first met them yonks ago I immediately really hoped that they'd go ahead and book because they had an infectious sense of enthusiasm, joy and genuine unbridled love. And from our initial meeting to their wedding they did not disappoint, creating a colourful and fun Bowie and space cats themed wedding that struck the right chord between silliness and seriousness (when it came to the heartfelt moments!).

I started the day at their flat to do a quick photoshoot of their very important cat, before driving us all to Morden Hall wedding venue where they were both getting ready in different corridors. Morden Hall is a clean light Manor House style wedding venue nestled right next to copious amounts of green lawn and woodlands of Morden Hall Park, a really great pick for a slightly country style wedding in the heart of tube-accessible London! Having seen a fair few Irregular Choice bridal shoes over the years, it was cool to see my first men's pair 6 years into the biz! Alex combined his metallic silver wedding brogues with pink monkey socks and a blue suit. Jas loves Rock n Roll Bride and wore a blue star Crown and Glory veil. Their wedding squad helped them decorate Morden Hall with lots of personal touches such as polaroids of themselves, their space cat wedding timeline, setting up their eco glitter bar and collage scrap book.

Before the ceremony they did a first look in a beautifully wallpapered room that joins the two corridors.

Morden Hall Wedding Ceremony

Their ceremony was probably one of the wettest I've ever photographed, absolutely everyone was touched by the genuine emotions the personal vows they exchanged, I was having to concentrate behind the camera to not end up all blurry eyed myself, a real hazard of the job!

After the ceremony they had their confetti throw and drinks reception, before going into the dining hall for the speeches.

Being a feminist couple they both gave a speech, before a seriously yummy and hearty dinner provided by Morden Hall. I gotta give props to the staff team there who were both quick and generous with looking after me as a wedding supplier!

In between the dinner courses the guests enjoyed the nice outdoor weather before parents and best people speeches!

After dinner, the guests played with the temporary tattoo station, eco glitter bar, and some of their friends gave Alex and Jas a personalised pirate piñata,

When they opened the dance floor they surprised their guests with a confetti cannon to David Bowie's Let's Dance

For the evening buffet they provided outdoor pizzas and Jas' favourite animal, the fox, turned up!

If you loved this wedding check out other fun London weddings and this wedding in a manor home.

London Balham Bowls Club wedding!

Fulham Library wedding ceremony

Chloe and Gordon held their relaxed wedding ceremony in the Fulham Library, with Gordon wearing a fantastic brown tweed suit and Chloe wearing a modern gold jumpsuit. They didn't want me to come and shoot their prep as they're a relaxed non-traditional kind of couple, so they got ready together in the morning and arrived at the ceremony venue together. It was very funny when they tried to make their ceremony entrance and had accidentally locked the door so they were stuck outside the room and it took us all a while to realise, but aside that their ceremony carried on without any further hitches! They carried in suitcases cans of drinks for their friends and family to enjoy after the ceremony to split their drinks ceremony over both Fulham Library and The Balham Bowls Club. After the civil ceremony where they had two readings, everyone jumped onto classic red London routemaster buses to the Balham Bowls Club, which came complete with vintage uniformed ticket masters.

fulham library wedding

London wedding bus

All the guests enjoyed their drinks on the London Routemaster bus to the wedding reception venue in South London, The Balham Bowls Club.

Balham Bowls Club wedding

Everyone continued the drinks reception at the Balham Bowls Club which is a beautiful casual pub in London with amazing food. I've photographed a wedding reception at The Balham Bowls Club before, they're famous for their sausage rolls! Chloe and Gordon are a modern couple so they gave their speech together before dinner. After dinner they cut the cheese stack on their cheese table table which they'd decorated with beautiful succulent decor they'd placed around all the tables.

For their guestbook they provided an instax camera and asked guests to take selfies and post them up with loving messages.

After dinner they opened the dancefloor for fun party times, playing a playlist they'd worked really hard together to create!

If you're planning a London pub wedding then you'll be pleased to know it's my specialty shooting relaxed pub weddings in a creative and modern wedding photography style. So click the links to check out similar weddings!

Marianne Chua.

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