February 14, 2019

Tying The (Double?) Knot

Cultures around the world are very different. Music, religion, sport, schooling and also marriage celebrations, but in the Western world wedding days tend go the same way. Fabulous clothes, great food, gorgeous venue with all your family and friends gathered around to watch you say I do, but of late, a new trend has emerged.

It’s common knowledge that the big day is a bit of a headache. For those of us that have made the move to the committed path, it can place a huge amount of stress, anxiety and worry on our shoulders to make sure the day is ‘perfect’. Venue, caterers, flowers, dresses, photographer and cars adds up to quite a to-do list, and also adds up in monetary value too.

But is there a way to slow it down and make it easier without taking anything away from the importance of the event? How can there be less pressure, less nerves (less bills!), but the same amount of love, laughter and fun?

This year I’ve had the privilege of photographing four weddings with a difference. The day to most would look the same but at each of these ceremonies, there was one distinct contrast from your average wedding day. The happy couple were already married.

Tying the knot before the publicised day is becoming more of a common occurrence. Couples deciding on this more simplistic way of sharing their nuptials believe it is the ideal way of minimising the stress, plus the nerves of being centre of attention in front of sometimes hundreds of people can also avoided.

The plan is simple. A licensed registrar will conduct the official ceremony where many couples don’t exchange vows or rings.  Close family, friends or sometimes two witnesses will join the couple for the simple legal I do’s and paperwork.

Sometime later, with a Celebrant present, a trained officiant, the couple will hold their unofficial wedding day. Together they will create a completely bespoke ceremony at a chosen location, whether that’s at the beach, under the stars or their favourite campsite.

The day will include guest involvement, chosen music, personalised vows and family traditions making it a unique, intimate and romantic occasion. Wedding traditions such as the speeches and the first dance are of course still part of the celebration.

For me, as the photographer of the happy event, the playbook is the same as any standard wedding. Images of the Bride and Groom preparing, guests arriving, venue decorations, the service, first kiss. But what did stand out for me at these four Celebrant-weddings this year was the true sense of energy. The stress-free aura of the happy couple was present and visual and made for more of a party atmosphere, rather than an official assembly.

As we say, cultures are different and although a marriage is a global tradition, there’s no set rule on how one has to proceed. Orthodox or not, this new quirky wave of weddings is making its mark and is perfect for those couples wanting full control over their dream day.

Whether it’s a traditional or tailored day, photographing sincere, heartfelt and natural memories of the event is something that will never change. Capturing real moments and real emotions as they happen to treasure for a lifetime is one of the most important and significant characteristics of any wedding day. We are always honoured to share the special time with all our newlyweds, helping them to remember every minute of the dawn of their new life together.

The weddings that I’ve blogged that has gone this route can be found below.

Ashley and Alexandra’s Wedding at The Exchange, Cardiff

Irene and Dany’s Wedding at Plas Glansevin near Llandovery

Jess and Ashley’s Wedding at Oldwalls Gower

If you are thinking of going this route for your wedding and would like some advice please get in touch via the button below. Happy wedding’ing. 🙂