Claridges wedding photography
Claridge’s hotel in Mayfair, London – my last wedding of the year, on the last day of the year. Clare and Oz had come down to London, from their home in Birmingham to the famous five-star hotel. My first ceremony at Claridge’s – shot a few receptions there and in the days of The Times, a few feature portraits of famous guests, during interviews there – so I knew it’s not the lightest of venues. (Is it the darkest foyer of any hotel in London?) But it has some style, atmosphere and history. You just go with what the light lets you capture.
Coverage kicks off, outside on the street, looking like a paparazzi stalking the hotel guests. Actually waiting for Oz, his son, Talisker* and brother/best man, Alton, to arrive. A quick rehearsal in the ceremony room, for Talisker – the ringbearer – and then I was up to the fourth floor, where Clare was getting ready, with family and friends, including her daughter, Isla.
Small hiccup as the bride was led into the ceremony. The forward party kept walking on, past the aisle! A correction, a wave from Oz and the ceremony could start – only for Oz to fluff a line!! But they finally got married!
Drinks in the French salon next door. A very important table, with bowls of crisps on it, the main focus for the younger guests. A few quick portraits outside in the cold, winter rain, amid the chaos of the front entrance – guests climbing into taxis and luxury 4×4’s – baggage being wheeled in and out… Fair do to Claridge’s, they let some pictures happen. Then back into the drawing-room for the wedding breakfast. Some guests would return in the evening. Speeches before a break.
Time for the tux…
Now, what do a bride and groom do for those thirty minutes, when they disappear from the reception and head upstairs to their room?
Rehearse their first dance, of course!
Then back down to the evening/new year’s eve party, in an ‘interestingly lit’ room…more drinks, more speeches, more revelations… Then time for the first dance.
The party went on into the night, as 2017 ended…here are a few images from this Claridges wedding day…
- by a strange coincidence, one of the last things I did, before driving up to London to shoot this wedding, was to move a bottle of Talisker whisky into my (locked) office. My daughter had a New Years Eve party in the house, that evening. I returned to absolute carnage and a very shellshocked dog sat amidst it all…
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