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Yemeng and Ivan at The Chelsea Old Town Hall…

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Wow. What an incredibly sweet couple!

Ivan first contacted me online and we arranged to meet in person for a drink to talk about their big day. In that hour I not only learnt about the lovely couple that I was to photograph but so much about Chinese culture and wedding traditions that I found so fascinating and really helpful for me to know before their UK wedding. Yemeng and Ivan would then be having a further wedding in 2019 in China where the bride’s family originate from.

On the day itself even though I didn’t share a first language with some of the guests I was made to feel so welcome and through gesturing and the helpful translation from some of the other guests we had such a great day and I, as well as the bride and groom, didn’t stop smiling. Along with 20 of their family and friends Ivan and Yemeng had a beautiful ceremony led by the fantastic team at the Chelsea Old Town Hall. I didn’t manage to catch the ladies name but herself and colleague Jo, who the previous week had shown me around the premises, were so helpful and accommodating and pretty much arranged all of my shots for me which was an absolute bonus.  I really couldn’t thank them enough. Ivan read a beautiful poem to his new wife (I absolutely did not cry.) and Yemeng added a touch of laughter to the ceremony when she declared, “I do, do, do!”.

After the traditional confetti tunnel for the newlyweds and some photographs on the steps outside we headed to The Ivy Garden for the couple’s reception. They had hired out the private dining room for an intimate lunch with their guests, and wow, what a dining room! It was absolutely stunning inside and the staff were fantastic.

I then stole the bride and groom away for some photos of just the two of them at St Luke’s church and gardens. We were blessed with a beautiful day weather wise and temperatures that were not too hot considering some of the crazy heights that the thermometers across London have reached in recent weeks. It was so clear to see that Yemeng and Ivan were having the best day and spent our time together doing nothing but smiling, laughing and kissing each other. They were in a world of their own and it was such an honour to be there with the bride and groom at this time. I remember from our own wedding day feeling in a bubble, especially after you’ve just said ‘I do’ when it all so raw and special. It’s a real treat to be there alongside a couple capturing this once in a lifetime moment.

Yemeng and Ivan thank you so much for allowing me to be a part of your day and I wish you so much happiness for your Chinese wedding in January 2019.  I can’t wait to see the photos!

Claire x

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