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Glorious estate wedding for Celine and Sam

It was a fairytale wedding come true for high school sweethearts Celine and Sam, who tied the knot and said their vows on 21 November 2020 in front of all their beloved family and friends.

Brookleigh Estate in Perth’s Swan Valley was their chosen venue, a picture-perfect location for a princess and her prince, with both getting ready at separate cottages within the residence.

Celine’s gown epitomised her incredibly, and suited the style of wedding she’d wanted. Off-white in colour, and more ivory than most, the A-line ball gown with glorious minute details gave way to a spectacle of photographic opportunities – from utilising ceiling-to-floor curtains at a gorgeous bay window to the beautiful French doors leading out to a cottage verandah.

Off to capture the groom’s preparations, it wasn’t too far away of a walk for me and the equipment. There was some light hearted banter as the men placed all the finishing touches on their suits and headed outside for some family shots, full of laughs and good times to remember.

One of today’s newest trends is to take in a session called ‘The First Look’, which is essentially a quiet moment before the ceremony for both the bride and groom. Celine and Sam opted for a First Look, and it turned out quite the spectacle with our princess bride quietly coming up behind her soon-to-be-husband to surprise him. This moment is more intimate and loving than when first seeing a bride walk down the aisle – usually the groom feels he has to try and hold it together in front of guests, but here at a First Look, he can get as emotional or non-emotional as he likes because of the session’s privacy.

Celine and Sam certainly took advantage of Brookleigh Estate with a glorious green backdrop at a nearby garden, sharing a quiet moment with one another before declaring their love for one another in front of loved ones. But before long it was time to pop open the champagne and take some pre-ceremony pictures the couple had opted to take. These included photographs of Celine with her bridesmaids, the groomsmen, and beloved family so that there wasn’t much interference from guests after the upcoming nuptials.

This session also helped calm the nerves a little bit.

The newlywed’s ceremony was held at a stunning gazebo by the lakeside – the view of the estate was lovely and absolutely perfect for a fairytale wedding. A string trio ensemble played under the shade of a sheltering tree whilst guests began to pile in and await the arrival of the bride.

A very intimate wedding, Sam finally saw his wife and assisted her to the gazebo when he spotted her. This particular venue was great fun to shoot at, as it allowed for me to take ‘sneaky’ pictures through gaps in the crowd, which I love doing, and I could move around freely with so many angles to choose from.

After the vows, certificate signing and walking back down the aisle as husband and wife, it was time for all the congratulatory pictures before heading out for our bridal shoot which was held at the estate’s various and abundant locations – the equestrian centre, outside the main chateau and out in an open field during the golden hour at sunset. Celine and Sam had well and truly by this stage relaxed for the camera, and we managed more than enough beautiful shots of the happy couple as well as with their bridal party.

The reception, also held at Brookleigh Estate in the Swan Valley, was held outdoors in the secret garden under a stunning clear gazebo-style tent. The location provided for great photos to be taken in front of the décor where guests were to be seated, and before we knew it, everyone had arrived and it was time to really celebrate and have fun!

Following on from speeches, it was soon time for the bridal waltz and the lighting under the tent was fantastic to work with. It provided a tonne of shadowing that added to the ambiance of the couple’s special day, and we even managed to sneak out for a couple minutes for pictures under the light of the moon out the front of the chateau.

With Sam proudly donning his Italian heritage, guests got an opportunity to form a circle and perform the Italian wedding tarantella dance. It was especially moving to witness the intimacy of this couple’s family, and I could tell throughout the day how much this was important to them all.

To Celine and Sam, thank you for allowing me to be your wedding photographer and helping you capture all the ever-lasting memories to share with your loved ones. I wish you both all the happiness in the world together and look forward to hearing updates on your anniversaries!

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