So - if you were an Elizabeth and a Jane Austen fan, then you might perhaps want to find a Bennett to marry? This Elizabeth found her Henry Bennett and she married him in May, when the blossom was at its absolute best. I've known Liz's mother for years, and photographed Liz's older sister Caroline in her Vera Wang 10 years ago. (It was SUCH a treat to see her again looking just as happy with her Hugo as she was a decade ago).
Amazing make up by Sophie, a pre-loved dress from Suzanne Neville (I love a thrifty bride) altered by the lovely Luda. Heels by LK Bennett (no relation). Bridesmaids Rachael & Portia were the perfect combination of attentive, hilarious and gorgeous, but not quite so much so as to upstage the bride, who by this stage was looking rather stunning. (It was hard not to imagine, as I had 10 years before, how proud their father would have been to see these girls get married, and what an incredible job their mother Chris has done.)
On to the church which is within spitting distance of Le very famous Manoir aux Quat'Saisons. Henry's niece Felicity provided the scrumptiousness as a perfect pink flower girl (I want that dress) and like the bride and bridesmaids was carrying beautiful blooms by Louise. It's a talented family, clearly: not one but two choirboys (brothers) who sang like the proverbial nightingales during the service.
The Bennetts (and boy, there are a lot of them) own and run a small, traditional, organic farm 8 miles outside of Oxford which is where the reception was held. Vegetables, pigs and lambs, horses on livery and a produce market every Thursday. Pigs (Pippa, Pansy, Pearl & Poppy and Boris the Boar) are pretty central to life at Sandy Lane, and proved a great diversion for guests. Henry's stepmother Sue was even back in her wellies and overalls the minute we got back, and (in an all-time first for me) appeared in the formal photos dressed like that. And why not? There was a smorgasbord of sweets and cakes, and homegrown amazingly delicious organic everything cooked by Lauren of Rumba Kitchen on what appeared to be a camping stove. I've had some unusual shot requests in my time, but a family group with the frankly terrifying Oxford Allen auto-scythe which sounded like an angry yeti and blitzed everything in its path, was yet another first. No Poldark oiled bare chests needed here. It was a farm wedding, what did I expect?
The most amazing, warm, heartfelt, genuine, lovely day.