WiTW Hearts: Beneath The Canopy

Beneath The Canopy supply beautifully furnished bell tents for weddings, festivals and events.

We love outdoor weddings with lots of character…especially weddings where guests are able to stay overnight and hang with you late into the evening and into the next day. Beneath The Canopy offer just that.

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They provide tiered levels of glamping for special occasions and creating magical bell tent villages, delivered to your chosen location. Their bell tents go hand in hand with festival style, bohemian and outdoor weddings and they have a range of guest tents and honeymoon bell tents for couple to spend a luxurious night under the stars.

What could be better huh?

We caught up with the wonderful Elise to find out more about Beneath The Canopy…

How did you come to be doing what you do? 

My husband and I are both musicians. We have performed and stayed at festivals over the years, and stayed in some weird and wonderful spaces. But I do love having the space & freedom of waking up to nature, so it was the bell tents that really appealed.

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They have oodles of space and standing room, given their footprint. The romance of the great outdoors, fairy lights and fire pits just had me sold! From there I started to think more about it, more about the concept of creating these pop up magical spaces for people to enjoy and what better time to create something special than for someone’s wedding day!

Photography | D & J Photography

What aspects of weddings do you love the most? 

Most of all, I love the fact that weddings really are one of the happiest and memorable days for people and we get to be part of that process. It’s a privilege. Your wedding day is one of those rare times in our busy lives that we get to have everyone we love surround us and share a moment that we can keep forever. It brings out the best in people and it’s wonderful to witness the excitement and joy of our couples & their loved ones.

What is your USP? How do you set yourself apart in the market? 

Our personal approach. I know how stressful & chaotic wedding planning can get, so I try to keep in simple. After all, you are probably going to speak to us a lot during the planning of your big day, so I think it’s nice to deal with someone that gives you reassurance they can deliver and that our clients can pick up the phone to when they feel they need to discuss anything.

GroomPhotography | Stephanie Palmer

I purposely don’t take on masses of events simultaneously, as I think this detracts from personal service we provide. I always end up knowing the names of our clients bridesmaids, groomsmen, family & friends almost off by heart by the time each event rolls around, so there’s a sense of familiarity when we set up their tents.

Are you keen to or have plans to launch any other products or services? 

There’s always something in the pipeline. We have some additional tents arriving in spring and have some interesting collaborations in store for summer, so it’s always a case of ‘watch this space’. Mostly I’m keen to work into our spaces more and make them better each season.

www.matildadelvesweddingphotography.comPhotography | Matilda Delves

What does love mean to you… 

Good lord! What a question, but I’m sure we’ve all thought about it. Ultimately I think love is the only thing in the world that will make you put someone else’s needs equal to or above your own…selflessness. Saving the last chocolate digestive so that someone else can dunk it in their tea. THAT is love. 

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Featured Image Photography | Matilda Delves

WiTW Hearts…Elena Popa

We’re hooked on Elena’s talent for capturing beautiful, unique and detailed weddings.

Showcasing amazing talent is something we are hugely passionate about here at Wed in The Wild…after all, fostering as sense of love, support and kindness is paramount in an industry where love is the order of the day!

Elena first got in touch with us to submit her amazing Lulworth Cove elopement (which you can see here), and we have been hooked on her talent for capturing beautiful, unique and detailed weddings ever since. Covering Surrey and the rest of the UK, she’s such a lovely soul and we’re so excited to follow her journey.

Without further ado, this week we heart…Elena Popa!

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How did you come to be doing what you do?

When I was 14, my at-the-time favourite rock band had a gig nearby where I lived. I asked my dad if he would buy me a point and shoot soap-shaped 4 megapixel digital camera to photograph what was – obviously –  the most important day of my life and since then I never really put it down.

Fast-forward a decade or so, friends and family started to ask me if I would photograph their weddings and I’m so glad they did! Because I certainly would not have planned for this to happen and I would have never found out how much I enjoy shooting weddings! I shot my very first wedding nearly 3 years ago and I got totally hooked.

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I don’t often share this, but I switched to weddings from science – I’m a fully qualified research scientist with a PhD in biology under my belt. It was super scary to make the switch from this polar opposite environment but I know for sure it was the right decision and I’ve not looked back since!

Erm, wow…now that’s an amazing switch!

What aspects of weddings do you love the most?

It’s always such an honour and pleasure to be part of someone’s wedding celebrations. Simply knowing that a couple chose me to come along and document it is an amazing feeling and means a great deal to me.

Overall, it’s a mixture of so many things I love about a wedding day, like getting to know my couples and their stories, hearing about all the things they’re planning for their big day,  witnessing all the emotion, perfect and imperfect moments of a wedding day. And for sure one of the highlights of working as a wedding photographer is getting a happy email from a couple saying just how much they love the photos I delivered to them! Nothing really beats that feeling 🙂

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What is your USP? How do you set yourself apart in the market?

I love working with couples who would rather break free from tradition and do things their own way. I’m a big lover of nature and I try to incorporate wild and dramatic landscapes into my work whenever possible.

The vast majority of people who get in touch with me share the same interests and values – (they are lovers of nature and travel, most likely own at least one dog!), and also comment on the mood in my photos, which I like to describe as atmospheric. 

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Are you keen to or have plans to launch any other products or services?

So funny you should ask! I have been quietly working on a side-show for a while and plan to launch later this year. I won’t say much about it now, aside from the fact that it’s got to do with my interest in hands!

Elena…filling us with all the suspense!

What do you love most about the wedding industry?

I absolutely love the community and how open to collaboration everyone is. I love there are directories for all the different styles of weddings – outdoor weddings, boho weddings, luxe weddings, there’s such a diverse array of styles and it’s so easy to get in touch with like-minded people and create inspirational images. If I were a bride right now I’d be inundated with choice – which I absolutely love.

Describe your ideal wedding?

Intimate, closest family and friends, somewhere in nature, by the sea or in a cabin in the mountains, lots of good food, freedom to do what I want, and sweaty drunk dancing all night long! (we actually had all this at our own wedding except we had to stop the party at midnight).

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Which celebrity wedding style do you love?

I think I shield myself away from the celebrity world to know too much about celebrity weddings, but I do follow Quigley and I’m absolutely in love with her! I love the images of her modelling gorgeous Rue de Seine dresses in crazy cool locations.

We LOVE Quigley, too!

What do you think is the biggest issue in the wedding industry?

I guess it depends whose point of view we’re looking at here…

Personally I wish the older generations would put less pressure on couples getting married to abide by societal norms rather than accepting new traditions. Weddings should be all about the couple and expectations from other people can really take the fun out of wedding planning!

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Also if I had the power to change anything I’d probably pass the law for couples to be able to get married anywhere in England and Wales (not sure where the 2018 Budget discussions led to on this one!).

What does love mean to you…

Selflessness. Compromise. Kindness.

We couldn’t agree more, my love – thank you so much for sharing your story with us Elena!

WiTW Hearts…Sift & Gather

The mistress of cakes and all round amazing boss lady of Sift & Gather shares her story…

We are so lucky to be surrounded and advocated by some amazing, gifted suppliers, and we are super thrilled to be able to utilise our platform to showcase their talents, their backstories and their genuine passion for what they do.

As part of our WiTW Hearts feature, we are talking to some of our absolute favourite vendors from across the world; turning the spotlight on them…the ones who go above and beyond to make your day happen in the way you want it to. The people without which this industry would not be at all possible.

Today, we are chatting to the mistress of cakes and all round amazing boss lady, Amber Markland of Sift & Gather. Her story is beautiful and passionate, and I hope you enjoy reading it…

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So tell us Amber, how did you come to be doing what you do?

I didn’t know I loved cake, I was just looking for something I could do with my family to give back to others less fortunate. It changed my life forever. 6 years ago, I became the chapter organizer for a non-profit called “Birthday Cakes 4 Free” in the town of Milton, Massachusetts. I started baking cakes, and my entire family would deliver them with me to children, and seniors that could not afford a cake on their birthday.

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I had know idea how much a cake could impact someone’s life. My children got to experience all the things a parent preaches about, being kind, genuine, respectful, giving, loving, and man did if feel good. From the very first cake that we delivered to a single mom, with 6 kids, on the verge of being homeless… I knew I was doing what I was meant to do. Since then, I have been perfecting my craft and finding a place in the industry that allows me to be uniquely me!

What aspects of weddings do you love the most?

This is easy, I love the LOVE aspect of a wedding the most! Here’s why… 14 years ago, I got married to the love of my life. Sounds amazing right? Well it was not what you see on Wed in the Wild, let me just tell you that. We were stationed at Mountain Home Air Force Base in potato country Idaho, in the United States Air Force.  I had a 1 year old on my hip, standing in front of a judge at the local courthouse. No family or friends to witness the once in a lifetime moment, no special vows written from the heart to read to each other, and no wedding rings.

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Now that I have witnessed and participated in real life weddings and elopements, I can see how special every aspect is to a couple and their loved ones. But the love that radiates between two people is so fulfilling to the soul.  Don’t get me wrong, I also love the design, florals, signage, cake, and all the details that pull it together. But I love the LOVE part of a wedding the most!

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What is your USP? How do you set yourself apart in the market?

It’s ME. I see how people can get caught up in doing what everyone else doing. I try and do the opposite of that! I do what I want…   I look at my business as a reflection of my individuality, it’s authentic to who I am as a human.  My brand is my aura, a beacon of light around me that puts off good vibes only and attracts people that want and need me. I sprinkle that shit in everything I make, along with a whole lot of my heart and soul. That’s what I want people to respond to first, ME, and then scream over how dope their cake looks and tastes! 

We really couldn’t agree more…you are your biggest asset!

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Are you keen to or have plans to launch any other products or services?

Not at this very moment… Right now, I am 100% focused on getting the brick & mortar, Sift & Gather cake studio up and running! Once that happens, you can bet your sweet ass we’re going to turn it up a notch! And don’t be shy about reaching out to me with questions, new ideas, or collaborations. 

What do you love most about the wedding industry?

Besides the couples, it’s hands down all the other vendors doin’ the damn thing. I can say, without a doubt I have made friends for life with several of the vendors I’ve worked with over the last year. These people that are pouring their blood, sweat, and tears into the products/services they are creating and providing for the couples we’re all so fortunate to meet is INSANE. I am humbled and honored daily by how lucky I am to be working in an industry that is so inspiring and supportive. 

Hail. Amazing, supportive suppliers can make all the difference when you are a solo business owner.

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Describe your ideal wedding?

My ideal wedding would be a small intimate ceremony, somewhere outside. Warm weather, no shoes, and a wedding dress that hangs off my shoulders and moves with the breeze in the air.  I’d walk down the isle with my 3 children by my side, to music that speaks to the soul.  The seasons most beautiful flowers, and a custom backdrop you’ve never seen before. Vows. Dinner around a gorgeous table setting, food, drinks, and a whole lot of dancing! Ohhh… and a beautiful cake! 

Which celebrity wedding style do you love?

I fell in love the very moment I saw the three individual cakes at the Royal wedding this last year.  It was so outside the box from what the past royal wedding cakes have ever been, and man did they make a statement. Simple, sophisticated, elegant, each one unique but still complimenting the others, and completely edible!

We agree…Meghan & Harry struck so many perfect chords! 

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What do you think is the biggest issue in the wedding industry?

Not giving credit, when credit is due. Sometimes the importance of a vendor’s role, gets minimized next to all the other important parts of a wedding. In my eyes, there is not one aspect of a wedding provided by a vendor that is not just as important as the next. The wedding comes together via a collective of talented, hardworking, worthy humans.  There is no i in TEAM, you know what I’m sayin!

We really do. Crediting is vastly important!

And finally, lovely lady, what does love mean to you…

Love to me is nourishment to the mind, body, and soul. It’s a feeling that feels so good, it almost hurts. Love is compassion and compromise. Love to me means, you can put your heart in someone else’s hands and know that they will hold it gently and protect it.  To me, love is something you give and receive. An explosion inside your chest when you look into the eyes of your children. An ache when you’ve become disconnected and distant from love you once had. Love to me means being gentle and kind. Love is loving yourself and all that you have to offer the world.

Love is CAKE!

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Photography Credits

Cast & Forge

Marnie Cornell

Sam & Sola

WiTW Hearts…Esme Whiteside

Introducing photographer Esme Whiteside: a cat loving, Northerner with a beautiful photography style.

As our platform grows and grows, we want to shine some loving spotlights on the amazing talent which make the wedding industry tick. From photographers to dress designers, cake artists to florists, stationers and jewellers…we want to bring you the most inspiring stories behind some of the wonderful faces in the wedding industry.

Whether you are a bride looking for kick-ass suppliers for your wedding, a fellow vendor looking to connect with fabulous creatives or you are simply interested in hearing peoples unique stories, then Wed in The Wild Hearts is the feature for you.

First up, we’re introducing photographer Esme Whiteside. In her own words she’s a cat loving, Northern gal. She’s a a traveller, an observer and she’s downright addicted to love. Based in Northwest England, Esme offers her services both nationally and internationally. We started following Esme a while back and we are completely obsessed with her raw, emotive and nostalgic photography style. We wanted to find out more about the face behind the camera…

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How did you come to be doing what you do?

Esme: I studied Fine Art at university. My uni was really liberal in the sense of what we could do within our own studios, and I ended up specialising my degree in fine art photography and videography. I was really obsessed with conceptual photography as an art form.

From there I went into working in a family photography studio, which I ended up absolutely loathing. It was too target driven and sales based with 0 creativity. I left and decided to jump into weddings, I’ve never looked back.

What aspects of weddings do you love the most?

Esme: I really love meeting people. I love hearing people’s stories, and creating a full documentary of the most special days of people’s lives. Often my couples cherish the images that they didn’t know I’d even taken the most. I love presenting couples with moments they didn’t realise happened, and allowing them to relive the love from the day through my photos.

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I love being there for people throughout the day too, offering advice and little words of wisdom to help calm nerves. There’s a lot of adrenaline flying around at weddings, which massively brings out my creativity. I feel, daily, very privileged that I not only get to share this experience with people, but I get to document it for them – I also often cry at super soppy weddings…but don’t mind me, the tears will only ruin my makeup and not the camera!

What is your USP? How do you set yourself apart in the market?

Esme: I definitely feel like my work meets at an interchange between Fine Art and documentary. I know there’s a lot of fine art wedding photographers, and there’s a lot of documentary wedding photographers, but I don’t think there are many that cross over. My work is really warm, dark and moody. Again, there are a lot of dark and moody photographers, but I feel there’s something really tangible and nostalgic about my images, whilst also being interactive and very in the moment.

(We really couldn’t agree more, Esme) 

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Are you keen to or have plans to launch any other products or services?

Esme: I’ve got so many plans for this year. I definitely want to look at being uber creative and channeling some of my visions. I’m thinking lots of styled shoots; I’m a control freak and LOVE organising. I also love networking and bringing together amazing creatives to make something beautiful and inspiring. I love helping newer photographers too, and sharing my visions with people needing more content, so I’m definitely thinking portfolio builders for photographers too. 

In terms of for my couples, I’ll be launching some new add ons to my full day package – new albums, post shoots instead of pre-shoots (I’ve got my first one this year which I’m so excited about!) and special destination and elopement pricing. 

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What do you love most about the wedding industry?

Esme: I love how supportive everyone is of one another. The majority of suppliers I’ve met, especially other photographers have a real community over competition spirit. I love how weddings can be anything you can dream of now, and how suppliers across the industry come together to create really incredible visions for couples.

What do you think is the biggest issue in the wedding industry?

Esme: As I said, most suppliers are really lovely, supportive and welcoming. On the odd occasion I’ve found suppliers to be quite intimidating, especially to newbies. I’m firmly in the community over competition camp, and don’t think acting like a rockstar gives a good impression to anyone.

I think there’s also a lot of pressure on couples for their wedding to be the biggest, best, most elaborate celebration, especially when amazing viral images go around of incredible destinations etc. If you get married, then everything went perfectly because you are married. No one needs the stress or pressure of co-ordinating everything to a tee. Celebrate your love your way.

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Describe your ideal wedding?

Esme: My favourite weddings are always the relaxed, pared back, stress free ones. I love an elaborate plan, and I love it when a plan comes together, but what I really love most is when couples celebrate their love, their way.

As I’ve said already, at the end of the day, as long as you get married then your day went exactly how it should have. Weddings that really give me that warm fuzzy feeling, of wow these people are SO IN LOVE, are essentially my favourite. Especially if it happens in a barn… with lots of pampas grass.

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Which celebrity wedding style do you love?

Esme: Honestly I really loved Miley Cyrus’ wedding recently. I know we didn’t get many major details, but it all just looked so sentimental and sweet. Super intimate and private, just the right amount of fuss, and perfect pared back details.

Her dress was really minimalistic, on trend muted dusky blooms, and simple hair and makeup. I loved everything I could get my hands on to see about it, just really personal and gorgeous.

What does love mean to you…

Esme: I think love comes in many different forms, and manifests itself differently to everyone. Love to me is coming home to my cats and my man, and feeling safe and secure every day. 

Love is being with someone who supports you, lets you dream but keeps your crazy in check. Love to me is definitely having someone balance you out, keep you on an even keel and run with your wild ideas every once in a while.

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Wed in The Wild Hearts…Twin Flame Styling

Shining the spotlight on Twin Flame Styling; tying the wedding industry with the spiritual industry.

It’s been a few weeks since our first Wed in The Wild Hearts… feature; in all honesty, we’ve been super busy! But, we are back and we have some amazing creative businesses lined up to showcase.

We’re passionate about channeling natural energies and utilising natural elements as much as possible, not only in wedding styling, but in our every day lives. Which is why we wanted to shine the spotlight on Twin Flame Styling; a young business from Essex which is tying the wedding and events industry with the spiritual industry.

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What is Twin Flame Styling?

Founded by Jess Meechan, Twin Flame Styling focuses on wedding planning, styling and coordination. However, Jess also offers a unique list of energy-based services aimed at preserving your energy in the run up to your big day.

IMG_6644Jess working hard, styling a wedding.

“We all know weddings can be stressful. You can find yourself trawling through Pinterest and spending your precious energy where it shouldn’t be spent. Be it through crystal favours, crystal ceremonies, pre-wedding reiki, or live card readings for guests at your event, I am passionate about creating the most magical energy on your special day as well as preserving yours on the lead up to it.”

Borne out of a passion for people, aesthetics and love, Jess has been working hard on her offering, which is unlike any other out there currently. With a spiritual background, she believes that all of us can tune into the world around us and utilise energy in a better, more effective way.

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How can Jess help you?

Describing herself as a fairy godmother, Jess can be on hand to help with full planning, styling, coordination or simply offering herself as a sounding board for ideas; tying them together so that you have the confidence to put them into action across your big day. Relationships are of paramount importance, and Jess is passionate about getting to know the couples she works with…

“For me, it’s the personal touches that mean the most. I ensure that I get to know my couples on a personal level, making the venture we take as collaborative as the couple would like. I love to show personality in what I do and the looks I create always aim to emulate the couple’s personality, spirit and general joie de vivre.”

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Jess’s loves outdoor weddings, or ones that aim to bring the outdoors in; she loves that there is so much scope for decor in an outdoor venue, whether it’s fairy lights in branches, or rugs on the ground. And tying in the outdoors resonates with her spirituality…

“involving earth in your big day, is like mother nature is also a witness to you both binding your love together forever!”

Crystal Power

Of course, crystal power is a trend on the rise, but Jess has long since been in tune with crystal healing. We asked her which crystals she would recommend to couples in the run up to their wedding day…

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“My favourite is amethyst. It is an incredibly beautiful stone that can be found in so many forms. Most of all it’s my favourite because it is a meditative and calming stone. We all can use this in our day to day lives, but really on the run up to a wedding day, it can help keep you feeling balanced and stress-free.

Rose Quartz is another beautiful one, particularly for weddings as it is quite literally the stone of unconditional love. It helps to open your heart chakra and absorb all the love around you, allowing you to reflect it back out!”

How to work with Twin Flame Styling

You can get in touch with Jess here, and follow her on Instagram to see what she is up to!

 

Wed in The Wild Hearts…Rock The Day

Wed in The Wild Hearts. This week is Rock The Day; a prop and styling powerhouse.

Once a week, we will be blowing a big fat kiss to a supplier we love! Partly because we love to show you pretty things created by lovely people, but mostly because it is cool to share the love.

Our first WiTW Hearts supplier is one of our absolute favourites. A wonderfully dedicated team, borne out of sheer hard work, devotion to the cause and a passion to deliver something different to the norm to their clients. Drum roll for…Rock The Day Styling!

RTDSopening-22Magda, Laura & Alex of Rock The Day. Photography: Laura Beresford

Who are Rock The Day?

The result of a merger between Rock The Day and Vintage Garden Weddings, the team comprises three talented women, all functioning in a slightly different capacity. Laura, who originally ran Rock The Day solo, heads up the wedding planning side; calling on her background and experience to help brides have the smoothest of days, with the cream of local suppliers.

Alex and Magda specialise in prop creation and their handmade macrame is to die for. Both are powerhouses of creativity and hand-make the bespoke props Rock The Day offer. All three work together to offer wedding styling services to couples.

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Based in their amazing studio and prop house in Braintree, Essex, the ladies work tirelessly to provide the dream wedding for their couples. With a focus on boho weddings, but not limited to this style, their showroom is a veritable platter of amazing furniture, gorgeous glassware, beautiful soft furnishings and out of the ordinary styling accompaniments/props; mostly vintage sourced from local shops and boot sales, or handmade by the team.

Jenna Branding-13Styled by Rock The Day. Photography: The Menagerie Lifestyle Photos

So, what can Rock The Day offer?

Well…the team offer three off the peg packages, which include basic prop hire, styling & preparation and on the day coordination. The team also offer bespoke packages which combine all three. The team are also able to source or hand-make props which aren’t readily available.

Sonia Ben (431 of 774)Styling by Rock The Day. Photography: Joe Kinnerman

Their focus is on providing a friendly but professional service, ensuring all of their couples enjoy their days; taking comfort in the knowledge that they are in the safest of hands. With so many dry hire venues popping up, sometimes its super hard for couples to visualise what can be done; its an overwhelming task and sometimes, styling a large, empty venue can be really underestimated…so why not let Rock The Day, well, rock your day!

Studio vibes… Photography: Laura Beresford

How to work with them…

If you want to work with the ladies for your big day, then you can contact Laura and the team here. You can also keep up to date with them on Instagram.

Featured Image: Kelsie Low Photography