Le Manoir Wedding Photos Oxford – Imogen & Gavin
Le Manoir Wedding Photos Oxford – for a laid back and stylish couple
I will always remember Imogen and Gavin fondly – they, like myself, had an intimate do and prioritised family, good food and did exactly what they wanted to suit them. I found when I got married that people questioned my choices to keep it so low key but we didn’t feel comfortable with the fuss or the expected run of the mill pomp so when Imogen sent me her lovely initial enquiry I felt as though I was reading a note from myself.
Although Imogen and Gavin’s Le Manoir Wedding was intimate it didn’t take away from it feeling like a wedding – in fact it almost felt more romantic and boy did these two go to town to make it look super stylish. There were literally flowers everywhere and I adored Imogen’s look – her short Valentino dress was fun; beautiful and elegant she rocked her 1960s inspired look. (Gav of course you looked handsome too!)
We decided that a first look would be the way to go as we didn’t have daylight on our side being late October and it was hand on heart one of the sweetest moments I have ever photographed. We also squeezed in some pre ceremony portraits in the rain – it was a rather dismal day to start with but Le Manoir Aux Quat Seasons looked gorgeously autumnal and atmospheric – I really enjoyed roaming the grounds before I started to officially start my work that day. After the ceremony we didn’t expect to be able to go out again but we were treated to the most pink sunset I think I have ever seen in the UK – so pretty and beautiful.
Anyway as ever I could waffle on and on but I shall leave you to a selection of their images now. If you want to see more images please check out their blog post on the fabulous Love My Dress here.
“Both of us were quite nervous about having a photographer – we even contemplated not having one for a while – but we are sooooo happy we did. Jordanna made us feel so comfortable and gave us a real giggle along the way too! Looking back at the pictures totally transports us back – they’re really atmospheric and remind us exactly how we felt on the day. Jordanna listened to our wants – to keep everything natural and relaxed as possible without any stiff, cheesy posing. We honestly couldn’t recommend Jordanna enough – she was perfect :)”
Imogen’s Words of Wedded Wisdom…
Where it all started…Gav and I met through a mutual friend and started dating when we were 17 and 16 respectively – so I think we count as childhood sweethearts! We enjoyed two years of engagement which gave us plenty of time to plan the wedding. By the time the big day rolled round, we’d been together for almost ten years so it was a real celebration of our time together so far too.
Finding the venue…We’d visited Le Manoir before and absolutely loved it, and we knew it would tick all the boxes for what we were looking for in a venue. Whenever we’ve visited, we’ve always had an amazing time – the service is impeccable, the building is beautiful, and the food is something else. To be honest, we didn’t even think about looking anywhere else! We wanted the wedding to feel more like a super special dinner party, so we kept it an intimate affair and had an evening ceremony with 50 guests. Our mantra was good company, good food and good wine!
The look…I’m not a full-length, frothy dress kind of person, so a traditional long wedding dress was never going to be for me – which ruled out shopping in bridal shops. I found my REDValentino dress on Net-A-Porter, and absolutely loved the shape of it and the pattern of the leaves along the skirt of the dress. I added a petticoat underneath to accentuate the vintage style and had a custom veil made which had a small velvet bow on the comb to match the bow on the dress. My shoes were Christian Dior, and the stole and umbrella I wore in the first look were both vintage. My parents gave me an Anya Hindmarch pouch a few days before the wedding as my ‘something blue’ – it’s got my mum’s handwriting on it and the date of the wedding, so it’s very treasured!
Gav wore a navy Burberry suit from Mr Porter – he’s a tall chap so he went for a slim, Italian cut. His shirt and tie were both from Thomas Pink, and he wore a Brooks Brothers tie pin and Lanvin pocket square. His brogues were from Church’s.
It was important to both of us to feel really comfortable and like ourselves on the day, so we just went for whatever made us feel our best!
The flowers, oh the flowers…Vic from Scarlet & Violet is a bit of a flower guru and I trusted her completely! I absolutely LOVED planning the flowers and in the end we went a bit mad with them – but if you can’t go mad with flowers on your wedding day, when can you?! I had a softer, creamier palette for my bouquet and the ceremony, and then darker, richer colours as the evening progressed which carried into the dining room. Flowers and candles provided most of the decoration, although I did have a Miss Havisham moment a few months before the wedding and bought a box of vintage wedding memorabilia – so we used some vintage cake toppers and horseshoes here and there!
The ceremony…My dad walked me down the aisle to an orchestral version of ‘O Mio Babbino Caro’ (Oh My Beloved Father).We opened the ceremony with a George Eliot quote, which we love: ‘What greater thing is there for two human souls, than to feel that they are joined for life – to strengthen each other in all labor, to rest on each other in all sorrow, to minister to each other in all pain, to be one with each other in silent unspeakable memories at the moment of the last parting?’
My aunt read William Shakespeare’s ‘Sonnet 116?, and my best friend read ‘Wedding’ by Alice Oswald for something a little bit different. We wrote our own vows and had every intention of reading them off by heart – but Gav forgot his after the first line and I managed to burst into tears and squeaked my way through! We loved it all though – the ceremony was definitely one of our favourite parts of the day.
The evening do…We put a lot of thought into the music we had at the wedding, and enjoy listening to our playlists all over again! Before the ceremony, we played a lot of Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday and Nat King Cole, and signed the register to ‘A Kiss To Build A Dream On’ by Louis Armstrong. We walked back down the aisle to ‘I Feel Fine’ by The Beatles which signalled the start of the champagne reception and a shift in music towards the ’60s. We played a whole lot of Motown! We didn’t have a first dance as it didn’t really fit it to our plan for the day, as we weren’t having a disco. But we ended the night with a ‘last dance’ – Buona Sera by Louis Prima! It was a cracking way to end the day.
Final tips…Think about doing a first look – we are so pleased Jordanna suggested it and we did one. It gave us a chance to see each other and ‘regroup’ before the ceremony and, since we had an Autumn wedding, also bought us a bit more time to have photos outside.
Speaking of which, don’t worry about a bit of rain on your wedding day! I was pretty miffed when I saw the weather forecast and yes, we were hoping for a crisp, clear October evening – but the shots of us with umbrellas are some of our favourites from the day!
Finally, just do what you want to do and don’t follow tradition if you don’t want to. We didn’t have an arsenal of ushers and bridesmaids, favours or a wedding cake (which seemed a shocking choice to some) – but we didn’t miss it! If it’s important to you, go for it. If it’s not, don’t do it!