Afternoon lovelies…. Laura has the most awesome post for you this afternoon, of her experience as a bride turned bridesmaid for her best friend Kelly’s wedding. I so love the images from the vintage styled hen do :-) Hen inspiration just for you girls…..
All Images (c) Laura Babb Photography
Hello everyone. I hope you’re enjoying the glorious sunshine? Let’s ignore the rumours of snow this week shall we?
This is probably going to be quite a long post with lots of pictures, so you might want to grab a cup of tea!
Instead of talking about my own wedding for a change I thought I’d talk to you about my best friend’s wedding and hen party as it’s been my main wedding focus over the last month.
Kelly and I have been friends for the best part of 15 years and she tied the knot on Friday! She has been engaged for getting on for two years and the wedding that seemed so very far away when she first started planning it finally happened this weekend, on a gloriously sunny day at Castle Headingham, in Essex.
But before I talk about the wedding, I’ll tell you about the hen party. Or parties. Yes there was more than one and I took pictures at both of them.
As head bridesmaid or Best Babb as I have been titled for the purpose of Kelly’s wedding – a title of which I wholeheartedly approve – planning the hen traditionally fell within my remit.
Luckily Kelly was after some classy (but not too classy) fun and that wouldn’t blow the budget, as she was conscious about keeping costs down for the people who would be attended (good girl, I say).
We decided that vintage inspired dress would be the order of the day and that we’d head to a 50s inspired American diner for dinner and cocktails and then we’d head off to Bourne and Hollingsworth for even more cocktails.
I’m quite good at backcombing and styling hair so when Kelly asked if she and the other bridesmaids could come to mine to get ready, I decided, in consultation with the other maids, to arrange a few surprises.
We asked the brilliant Elbie Van Eden to come along and do all of our hair and make-up and I threw a little tea party with cucumber sandwiches (sans crusts, naturally), cakes and enough bubbles to ensure we were all pretty tipsy by the time we left to head out for dinner and I also bought each of the bridesmaids a vintage brooch as ‘hen party favours’.
The raffia hearts and jars are things I’ve been crafting for my own wedding so it was really nice to see how they might actually look when put together.
And it was really nice to be able to photograph some of the hen party for Kelly (I didn’t photograph the latter part of the evening as I was busy drinking cocktails!) so that she has a record of how beautiful she looked all dressed up in her Vivien of Holloway dress.
Kelly’s second hen party was a bridal shower, thrown by her mum, for her closest friends and family. Two hen parties might seem like overkill but it was really nice to do something that people like Kelly’s nan, who might not have been otherwise able to be involved in the hen, could take part in.
There were more cakes (in fact there were more cakes than anyone could ever need. Look at all of the cakes!), more bubbles and also lots of lovely presents. A rather lovely send off all round, I think you’ll agree.
As for the wedding, I don’t much in the way of pictures to show you as I didn’t take a camera! It was a bit strange to be at a wedding without one as I’ve been the official photographer at every single wedding I attended last year. I did take a few instagrams though.
Kelly always had a very specific idea of the sort of wedding she wanted and it was very, very different from what Pete and I have planned.
Kelly totally wanted to be a princess for a day so it was fitting that she got married in a castle and her wedding was a sophisticated, classy affair (the tone only lowered slightly by the sparkly brogues that I insisted on wearing with my bridesmaid’s dress….) where we sipped cocktails, listened to a string quartet, stuffed ourselves full of yummy food and then danced the night away (including an 80s hour).
I did a reading during the ceremony from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin (which I sobbed most of the way through!) and as I wanted to give Kelly a personal present, rather than something from their gift list, I asked wedding stationery designer I Am Nat to design a typographical poster of the reading for me so that Kelly and Simon would have another memory of their day.
Given that I’m getting married myself, I wondered whether there would be lessons to be learned from Kelly’s wedding or things that I would take away. There weren’t really. It was perfect for Kelly and Simon and they had an amazing day. They probably ordered a bit too much cheese and wine but you can’t fault them for that (especially as I still have some of the cheese in my fridge).
It was so lovely to be a part of my closest friend’s wedding and hen party. She was so happy that it made me just as happy. I’ll leave you with the reading that made me sob like a small child. Sniff.
Love is a temporary madness;
it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides.
And when it subsides you have to make a decision.
You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part.
Because this is what love is.
Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement,
it is not the promulgation of eternal passion.
That is just being in love, which any fool can do.
Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident.
Those that truly love have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossoms have fallen from their branches, they find that they are one tree and not two.
Thanks so much Laura… what a beautiful post. Are you planning your hen? What are your plans? And are you attending any weddings before your big day? Is there anything you are looking to find out from them? We’d love to hear from you XOXO Lou
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