We had the pleasure of capturing the wedding of Jake and Becs at the lovely Fairyhill in March. It was our first time at this Gower based venue and we were so lucky with the weather, we were treated so well (Thank you for the end of the night G&T Fairyhill!) and we had this beautiful pair with the hugest smiles making our job pretty easy all day!
We have the pleasure of knowing Becs sister and family (check her and her lovely family minus their newest addition here) and felt so chuffed that Becs was wanting us to photograph their special day. Recommendations from family and friends mean so much.
Bec got ready at home and it was important to her that her family were there to help her get ready and for them to see her before she went to Fairyhill. I know Im not alone in saying this, but these moments with family are so special and often very emotional. Sometime (often!) tears are shed! (not just from the bride and family...). Witnessing this part of the day, before a bride is "handed over" to her groom, these moments are priceless and precious).
Their ceremony was held in the new "kaleidoscope room". With its stunning curved glass modern frontage and beautiful views this really is such a gorgeous place to set a wedding.
We loved this wedding and felt very much apart of the day from start to finish. Thank you so much both for making us feel so welcome and Fairyhill too. Bec kindly answered some questions for us about their wedding day and you can read more after enjoying these photos ... enjoy! x o&c
How did you meet? What happened along the way? How did you get here?: Haha, the most asked question! Well...Jake and I actually met online. Initially I used to get embarrassed answering this, but now I am married to the man of my dreams, I’ll quite happily admit it as it worked for us :). With the busyness of work and spending time with my circle of friends/family, I never seemed to meet new people. With lots and lots of persuasion, I started online dating and 4 months later met Mr Hardy. On our second date he met me with my favourite flowers, tulips, and a bag of chocolate raisins (my favourite treat). I knew he was the man for me! We dated for nine months, were engaged for 13 months and here I am now, writing as a happily married lady.
What made you choose your venue(s) and location(s)?: We looked online at a few local venues but Jake was quite keen on getting married somewhere new, a venue he hadn’t been to as guest to a wedding. We had heard of the plans for Fairyhill to expand. We booked a meeting with a member of staff, and fell in love with their plans and ideas. We took a leap of faith and booked without the extension being built yet. I remember Jake saying, if it’s not built by January, I’ll go down and help. We had much excitement visiting the venue once the extension was complete. We were so happy with our choice. It made it special being ‘new’ and our guests were just as excited to visit the place. We loved the grounds Fairyhill had to offer and the fact that trees surrounded us. We knew there would be plenty of beautiful photo opportunities without needing to drive away somewhere.
Your outfits & accessories - What made you choose your outfits? What did you love about them?: I bought my dress from Cariad Bridal Swansea. I’d like to think I was an ‘easy’ customer. I tried on 3 dresses and from my sister and mums reaction, I knew my dress was the one. Although three sizes too big, once pulled in, I fell in love with the detail on my dress. I loved how different it was, with the beaded ‘sleeves’. Looking back at photos now, I am super happy with my choice. As for accessories, I had advice from a friend suggesting to look online for hair pieces rather than bridal shops. I bought mine online for less than a tenner. I bought pearl earrings to match my shoes and ‘sleeves’. I’m a big fan of pearls! And then a bracelet from M&S to match. As for my beautiful bridesmaids, having to find 2 maternity dresses I felt online would be best. ASOS had great choices and this is where I bought their dresses, reasonably priced too.
What made you choose your decor and styling? Tell me about your flowers/florist (bouquets, centre pieces & general decorative arrangements)?: I was Pinterest happy during the engagement, as I’m sure most brides are. I like pastel shades and love spring flowers so I searched this. Jake and I decided we didn’t want too much going on as centrepieces so we kept it simple. First we sourced a florist. We stayed local and went with Barrie Hughes in Pontyberem. Jake had heard he was great and has won awards for his work, but also we were happy to support local people. After meeting Barrie, I emailed him some ideas and he completely kept my mind at ease saying my taste was similar to his daughters wedding. The flowers were perfect. We were so happy, and guests commented on how beautiful the venue and bouquets looked. Letting the flowers speak for themselves, we had these as centrepieces for the tables, in decorated jars. I’m so happy Owen and Charis took photos of these as they were so pretty against tea lights. We were delighted to let my cousin Rachel (one of the bridesmaids) make our table names and table plan. It was stunningly made on a mirror, which we now have in our spare room. We gave her the freedom to do as she wanted, but told her the theme was ‘spring flowers’. I love not being too specific with people and then being surprised. It was the best surprise when I saw what she made. She wants to start her own business making wedding decor so if you want her details let me know :)
Finally the cake...Jakes Aunty kindly made us a buttercream coated cake of chocolate, carrot and fruit cake. Delicious!
Tell us about your Ceremony including any readings, any special moments and your vows. Did you tailor your vows?: We visited the registrar prior to wedding. She allowed us to choose the words we wished to say when exchanging rings. I remember welling up when she read them aloud, thinking of Jake saying them to me. I knew they were the ones to choose. We chose not to write our own vows...too much pressure! We had my brother in law and good friend play three songs during the signing of the registrar. Again, I let them choose and surprise us with their choice of songs. We were thrilled! We even managed to be cheeky and get a religious song played, which was lovely for me as the words were so significant and meaningful. My sister wrote a poem for the ceremony. This is when the tears started. I love how personal weddings can become with readings etc. She is a very talented writer, but not just that, she is my beautiful sister, and having her read out those words was extremely special to me. She surprised us too and had Rachel type out the words in a booklet for us to keep. I particularly like the photo that was caught of sister and bump during the reading.
Do you have any comments about your photography? What was it like working with o&c? Why did you decide to book us?: Owen and Charis know my sister so we heard of them through her. But in all honesty we didn’t choose them because of this connection. The link made me look at their website and we chose them based on what we saw, and finally through our first meet. We loved how natural their shots looked on their website. To be honest we also liked their personalities...Spending the day with ‘strangers’ on what can be one of the best days of your lives, I think it’s kind of a bonus if you like them ;). So yes, we chose O&C. We can’t be happier with our choice. Jake and I are not keen on posing for photos so we felt so relaxed all day, sometimes not even remembering they were there. They truly caught the fun, laughter, emotion and happiness of our day. They took photos of the vows, the cutting of the cake, the first dance...but best of all they caught photos of those smiles and conversations between Jake and I and the guests. These are my favourite shots! The ones you didn’t know were being taken but say so much about the day. We couldn’t be happier with our photos. They are beautiful! We also loved the video which made us excited to receive all the photos. It was made so speedily too! Not only did we get 2 great photographers, I felt like Charis became my fourth bridesmaid and was there in my time of need when my veil began to fall out. See if you can spot the photo ;)
What was your first dance song and why?: Jake chose the first dance song. He likes the oldies so we had Frank Sinatra’s Just the way you look tonight. You can’t go wrong with Sinatra really! I remember the band asking if we wanted them to play it. Jake wanted Sinatra’s version!
Did you have any entertainment (day & evening)?: We had Coverland for our evening entertainment. To be honest we went completely on recommendation as we hadn’t heard them play before. I highly recommend them. They played every genre so all our guests were on the dance floor at least once that night. They definitely got people dancing! Good communication prior to wedding and friendly guys!
What was your favourite part of the day and why?: This is very tricky to answer as there are so many moments. Mum helping me put on my dress, the first time my dad saw me, looking out at my guests during the meal and watching them smile, the speeches...
I’d have to say the best bit would have to be walking down the isle to my man and watching his smile, followed by the vows. After all the wedding is all about you saying ‘I do’ and hearing Jake say those words to me, I will always remember that. I remember almost forgetting there was a room full of people and in that moment it felt like him and me together, making a promise as hubby and wife.
If you could impart any words of wisdom to a couple planning their marriage and wedding day, what would they be and is there anything you would do differently?: I remember people telling me that the day would zoom by. Fortunately I didn’t feel this way as the day felt nicely paced, calm and everything I wished it to be. But within this busy day, as lots happens, I remembered to make time for Jake. I knew all my guests would want to see and talk to me, but I made sure I knew where Jake was and spent time with him too. Sounds weird to say, but you’ll be surprised how easily you can get separated and caught up with people. Like I said, the vows were my favourite part, so enjoy every moment but particularly this bit. As those words are so precious! So my advice would be, enjoy the day together. Spend as much of it together!
Thank you so much Jake and Bec. If you are having your wedding at Fairyhill and would like to know about o&c Photography capturing your photos please do drop us a line here, we would love to chat x