Bride Vs Groom » Wedding Experiences & Guidance for the Bride & Groom

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Many photographers and videographers we’ve spoken to lately tell us they will be seeing in the New Year at a wedding, and it got us thinking – is it a good idea to get married on a famous date like New Year’s eve, Valentines day and Bonfire Night or is it best to avoid those dates entirely? Time to put it to the debate!


In the Red Corner, arguing for getting married any other day, (although don’t tell Matt but she does find the fact she was married the day before Halloween pretty much the only way to remember the date!) It’s Dom “The Tog Bride”

In the Blue Corner, arguing for getting married on a date of national significance, he himself will be seeing in the New Year filming a lovely couple’s big day and we’re not sure Dom’s too happy about it, it’s Matt “The Gormless Groom”

Famous Date Wedding Vs Any Other Day


Dom: In getting married you’re CREATING a significant date in your personal history and its importance to you will be far greater than that of a national holiday so there’s really no need to piggy-back an already important date!

Matt: There’s something special about getting married on New Years Eve or Valentines day, or even having a blessing on Christmas day! These days already have a kind of magic about them and marking them further with your wedding just makes them extra special.

Dom: It might be particularly expensive to get married on a famous date, for example most suppliers will charge a significantly higher fee for being away from their loved ones on New Year’s Eve or particularly Christmas Eve, Christmas Day or Boxing Day.

Matt: Getting married on Bonfire Night or New Year’s Eve gives you an extra excuse to have some amazing fireworks! Who knows, you may be having your wedding at a venue where Fireworks are already planned so you can receive all the benefits without the costs!

Dom: Some people might find getting married on certain dates such as valentines day a little tacky rather than über romantic.

Matt: Your anniversary date will always be extra special and extra memorable if getting married on a famous date and you get to combine your anniversary celebrations with wider celebrations across the country!

Dom: By having your wedding on a date that already has special significance you can end up losing some of the personal significance of the day, for example a New Year’s wedding could end up being more about the clock striking midnight than you and your partner getting married which is really what it’s all about.

Matt: There’s a special significance about getting married at New Year and starting a new chapter together on the first day of the year – so symbolic.

Dom: Your friends and family may already have plans for the most significant days in the calendar and you may well find that they’re unable to come on such significant dates.

Matt: Famous dates are often bank holidays and consequently it can be easier to get everyone together and everyone’s in the mood to party long into the night!

So those are our thoughts but where do you stand? Leave a comment or place your vote in our Friday Fight-Out Poll below!

Famous Date Wedding Vs Any Other Day


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It’s that time of the week where we like to look back through the archives and share some of our most helpful posts and tips with all you newly engaged soon-to-be Brides and Grooms and this week we’d like to bring back a little post we wrote that is likely to become somewhat topical after Christmas as more and more guests find themselves with shiny new cameras, smartphones and tablets: Going Unplugged… 

These days everyone’s a photographer. We each carry on our person a camera at all times and you can be tagged so fast on Facebook that you can find out online that you’re in the same room as someone before you’ve even had chance to look up. Digital technology is changing the way we think about photography and cameras are literally everywhere. It’s not just limited to camera-phones, now that you no longer need a dark room, a huge tolerance for lots of stinking chemicals and a small fortune to waste accidentally taking pictures of your finger, everyday users can now afford the kind of camera technology that once resided solely in the hands of the professional photographer.

Nowhere is this more evident than at a wedding. Everyone wants to have their own pictures of the Bride and Groom to take home with them, to publish on Facebook and to share with anyone who wasn’t able to make it. The ability to share our experiences in such a visual way is a remarkable thing and you can often end up with some cool, fun shots of you and your mates to look back on afterwards and even a few special ones that might be treasured by the bride and groom.

However, the camera revolution does have its drawbacks…

The Paparazzi await the Bride and Groom…
Photo by York Place Studios

Too many cooks may spoil the broth, but too many photographers stops the shot from ever happening in the first place. Most couples will have hired a professional photographer to capture their wedding and ensure they have stunning shots from all the best angles throughout the day, but increasingly the professionals are struggling to fight their way through a crowd of cameras to get the shot they’re after. It can become almost a Paparazzi-like battle for the best position with flashes going off everywhere and in the end no-one, including the professional photographer, ends up with a decent photograph to show for it all.

The problem is being exacerbated with the advent of tablet computers with built-in cameras. Whilst you might be able to work around a camera the size of a mobile phone, try getting a clean shot with someone holding an iPad at arms length in front of them and you’ll see what we mean. Camera flashes can also be a major problem. Photography is effectively the manipulation of light to create an image and photographers are very careful to set up the optimum light settings to create the mood and texture they want in their pictures. If a miss-timed flash goes off at the same time they hit the shutter all those settings count for nothing and, depending on the type of shot they were going for, they may end up with nothing but a white blur. Then of course there’s the notorious ‘uncle bob’ amateur photographer who likes nothing more than speaking to the professional about their camera equipment whilst following them around and removing any chance of their being discrete and capturing natural shots. Their equipment is also often so professional looking that they’re mistakenly seen by the guests as the official photographer which can lead to further problems with mistaken identity, particularly with certain venues who have taken the extreme step of banning all photography including those by the official photographer from taking place during the ceremony after bad previous experiences with proceedings being interrupted by amateur photographers.

It’s not so much the act of taking photographs itself that can be such a problem however. The problem is often more that the people you’re trying to take a picture of are themselves holding a camera to their face, making for multiple photographs of people taking photographs rather than of happy guests enjoying the day.

Our own Father of the Groom accidentally hiding his face…
Image by Ed Peers

Now don’t get us wrong here, we enjoy taking out our iPhones and taking a few snaps probably more than most, but it’s important to remember that someone is being paid a lot of money by the couple to do that very job for them and that even if you do get a few nice images there is a huge difference in overall quality between amateur and professional photographs, and the couple are looking for a complete story of the day consistent in quality, style and texture rather than just two or three great images that don’t relate to the rest of the pictures from the day. It’s kind of like walking into fracture clinic at the hospital with some triangular bandages and putting slings on all the patients… it may be great practice for your first aid, they might be top quality bandages and might even help a few patients, but overall people would probably rather the doctor did it…

The problem has led to a lot of couples taking matters into their own hands and banning guests from taking any pictures at all on the wedding day and holding a so-called “unplugged” wedding, taking the focus away from the cameras and back onto the Bride and Groom where it belongs. This removes any concerns about guests accidentally getting in the way of the official photographs and gives the professional the freedom to get the shots they need unimpeded. For the couple it also means they’re less likely to spend their entire day posing for pictures and can spend more time actually enjoying the happiest day of their lives.

But if cameras are banned, who’s going to get those fun, relaxed and often ridiculous shots that can really only be taken by one friend of another? And most photographers disappear after the first dance –  who’s going to record the late-night revelries? Perhaps we need to find a middle ground…

After-dinner cameras
Image by Ed Peers

The fact is that during the key parts of the day – the ceremony, the speeches, first dance, cutting of the cake etc. there only really needs to be one photographer and most pros are probably perfectly happy for you to share their photographs online with all your friends and family just as you would your own pics. As a guest you’re there to enjoy the day live, not miss the action taking hundreds of pictures to look at it later, that’s why someone else is there to do it for you. But outside of those key parts of the day taking a few fun shots on your compact or even trying your hand as an aspiring amateur is generally harmless and can be a lot of fun… in fact for our own wedding we actually handed out old film cameras and polaroids after dinner for the guests to have a bit of fun with and give us some completely different types of photograph to laugh at later…

At the end of the day taking pictures can be a lot of fun and there’s definitely a time and place for it, even on a wedding day. But it’s important to remember that this is the Bride and Groom’s big day, not a free-for-all photo-shoot. If a professional photographer’s being paid lots of money solely to capture the best photographs of the day it’s fruitless getting in the way of that solely to capture something vaguely similar on a slightly different device. Digital technology is undoubtedly a fantastic thing, but on the most important day of two people’s lives, sometimes it’s better to just go unplugged.

To read more about the advantages and disadvantages of the Unplugged wedding you can find our Friday Fight-Out on this topic here: Guest Photography Vs Pro Only

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It’s been a little while but our fabulous resident expert Victoria Farr is back on the blog to share her top wedding hair and makeup tips with you all today! Victoria is currently away being all kinds of glamorous in Paris so we’re thrilled she’s found the time to fill you all in on what to expect when booking a makeup artist for your big day!

The-ExpertsHello again!

Gosh, how time flies….last time I gave you some tips on what questions to ask when sourcing a make up artist for your wedding day and today, I’m going to go through what to expect after making that booking and what happens at the trial and consultation.

You’ve found your perfect make up artist, paid your booking fee and then you will await your trial which can depend on each artist but are ordinarily around 10 weeks before the wedding. By this time you will have some idea on how you see your wedding day styling and had a first or even second fitting of your gown. You may have also decided whether you should wear anything  in your hair, whether this be a gorgeous floral crown, headdress or veil or nothing at all. If you would like some help on this, your artist should be able to give you some guidance.



Once you’ve arranged your consultation appointment, here are a few tips that I pass onto my brides in preparation for that appointment;

  • If you don’t know what style of make up you are looking for, research magazines, celebrities and get a general feel for the look you want to achieve.  One thought I will share is that the images that you see on Pinterest or Instagram have more than likely had some form of airbrush or retouching,  we all wish we had eyes that big, no under eye creases and a perfectly shaped brow, but you know that already, right?
  • Your wedding day may not be the right time to trial something new, ie a bright red lip or smoky eye if you don’t already wear this style of make up.  My advice would be that you still want to look at your wedding album in years to come knowing that ‘you look like you’ but at your most beautiful and radiant.  This also applies to your hair styling, if you are not one for wearing your hair up, this does not mean you should wear it up just because it’s your wedding day.  Essentially, you need to be happy and confident with your styling, as you are with your friends and family and being photographed all day.  Your trial is the perfect time to try a new look even if this is for a process of elimination.
  • I also ask my brides to bring along a picture of their wedding gown and any accessories they may have, this allows me to ensure the overall look compliments one another and nothing looks ‘out of place’.

The Consultation

So you’ve done your ‘homework’ and you are ready for the trial, which is something you should be looking forward to and not filled with dread, I believe that this is all part of your wedding experience and something to enjoy.  Bring along your Mum, bridesmaid or a friend to offer some support whether this is at the make up artists location or at your home.  Whether you are clean faced or wearing your usual style of make up is entirely up to you, however, this could differ between artists on how they like to see their clients, so you may want to double check.

Part of the consultation process should include a few questions about your skincare regime and if you have any concerns.  After cleansing the face, it will give the artist an opportunity to assess your skin ensuring the right products are applied and technique used.  After discussing in detail the style of your wedding day look I personally then build on this, conferring with you throughout, offering my advice and guidance on colours and how the make up should look dependent upon your eye and face shape.  Communication is key at your trial, you should speak out if you do not like something and build on this together with the artist, but also to have realistic expectations.

The trial appointment time can vary, however, I normally earmark around one and a half hours, once you have agreed the final look and you are 100% happy, your artist will then recreate this on your wedding day.  I would also suggest that you take a note of the lip colour should you wish to buy this for your wedding day.

Also, this is a good opportunity to have a chat about any of the bridal party requirements so that the artist can build this into their timeline of the morning and any particular requirements of theirs.

Next time…The run up to and the wedding day itself.
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Today we have a special treat for you as we all share in Joanna and Daniel’s beautiful Surrey wedding, courtesy of wedding film specialists and latest addition to the Bride Vs Groom Awesome Supplier family: HD Moments.

Joanna and Daniel chose Wentworth Golf Club in Surrey as the perfect venue for their big day and the moment the sun rises at the very beginning of the film you can just tell that this was always going to be a truly perfect day. Joanna looks simply stunning and brimming with emotion as her mum delivers a touching speech and with Daniel’s eyes never leaving hers as he speaks such heartfelt vows this film captures the sentiment just perfectly.

But enough from us, it’s time to warm your hearts on this frosty morning and enjoy Joanna and Daniel’s beautiful Surrey Wedding Film.

Wentworth Surrey Wedding Film
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matt-avatar WhitenedIt’s the time of year when wedding photographers and videographers alike start to gradually peak out from their editing caves and meet up to discuss what they’ve all been up to and talk through the highs and lows of the wedding season. We’ve been involved in a few such meet ups lately and from all of our discussions one thing has become abundantly clear:


Seriously, it’s incredible how often photographers seem to be asked to remove pictures from their galleries of people who were there that they don’t like or even ask if it’s possible to edit them out of the background. Now listen carefully, I will say this only once: If you dislike someone strongly enough that you want all evidence of their presence at your wedding deleted at the earliest opportunity, they almost certainly shouldn’t have made the guest list (unless of course you had some kind of plan to reveal your hatred of them by seating them all together at a table in the naughty corner named “rejects”, in which case you should probably have issued each of them with wedding favours in the form of paper bags to put over their heads or something…)

Now don’t get me wrong. I appreciate there are occasionally perfectly good reasons why you have to invite people you don’t particularly like to various social events. Maybe you work with them and it would be rude not to invite them to the office Christmas drinks or, you know, maybe you really don’t like them but they’re the ones who bring the Wii around to play Mario Kart or something and it seems a bit harsh to ask them to just drop it off and leave. So yes, there probably are many social occasions where you don’t necessarily really have the choice over inviting certain people, but your wedding day isn’t one of them.

Your wedding is YOUR day. It’s not about impressing anyone, it’s not about networking, pleasing others or (on the most part) playing Mario Kart. It’s the one day where you truly call the shots and get to spend it with all the people you love, together in one place, and not be surrounded by people you smile at through gritted teeth whilst painting a dart board on their face in your mind. Stop fretting about whether they will be offended if you don’t invite them, in fact your should rejoice in how offended they might be, you do after all not like these people so much that you’re about to ask your photographer to do the equivalent of cutting your ex-girlfriend out of all the pictures of the two of you together.

So join us in our new revolutionary concept of only inviting people you like to the most important day of your lives and this world will be the better for it. Or, if you’re not quite willing to commit to NO people you don’t like at your wedding then you might want to check out our new range of special limited edition Bride Vs Groom paper bags to place over their heads, available now from no good retailers. We’ve made them smell of garlic to repel the evil spirits within so I think you’ll agree they’re worth every penny.


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