James and Laura’s wedding was a fabulous, relaxed and joyful occasion. The venue was the most quaint village hall In Marsden Gloucestershire, right in the heart of the Cotswolds. It was the perfect blank canvas for the couple to put their stamp on and wow, did they manage to put their stamp on it! Everything, and I mean absolutely everything, was done by the couple and their families, right down to all of the flowers that were grown across many family members’ gardens. This really bought a wonderful community vibe to the wedding. 

When I arrived, the groom and his ushers were just putting the finishing touches on the decorations before a quick change into their suits, ready for their buttonholes (again, home grown). As guests started arriving I wandered around snapping away, looking for smiles and little moments that always unfold as old friends greet each other. 

The guests were ushered around the back of the hall into a field where the most dreamy ceremony setting had been created, using a beautiful oak as the backdrop. As this was happening, Laura and her bridal party arrived in an old VW camper and put the finishing touches to her stunning dress which had been created by her close friend and textile designer Martha. The dress was wonderfully flowing yet utterly elegant and timeless and you could see it had been designed entirely for Laura; it was perfect. 

The humanist ceremony was filled with emotion and love, with personalised details thrown in at every possible moment, like the moment a friend played the fiddle accompanied by the guests singing a rendition of the Beatles ‘All You Need is Love’. As the ceremony ended the couple walked down the aisle to a shower of petals all patiently grown and dried by Laura and her mum. 

The drinks reception was a lovely relaxed affair filled with lots of drinks, nibbles and laughter. Guests wondered around the venue and explored the field next door. I took this opportunity to grab a few family group shots and then snuck away into the village of Marsden for a quick couples portrait session. The village itself has the Iconic cotswold stone and makes for the perfect backdrop for couple shots.

The wedding breakfast was announced and I quickly grabbed the whole party for a group shot before they disappeared inside for a feast! The food was incredible and there wasn’t a scrap left on guests’ plates. Speeches followed and produced many a laugh and many a tear. All the speeches really hit the nail on the head being equally funny with old stories but with warmth and emotion thrown in. 

After the meal, the ceilidh band started warming up and the guests went outside to get some fresh air before the organised carnage of a ceilidh started. And good god, everyone was up for it! At one point the line snaked all way out the main door and back in through the side door. This was a party that was going to go on well into the night and possibly the early hours, but it was time I said my goodbyes and quietly went home, grabbing a slice of pizza on my way out. 

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