Being a local photographer means that Sopwell House is a venue with which we are very familiar. The 4-Star country house hotel is a wonderful venue for all kinds of celebrations, with a wedding at Sopwell House always being a memorable occasion. We were, therefore, very excited when Tim and Maria asked us to provide their wedding photography and videography in this lovely location.
The bride and the groom are both from Greek Orthodox families and had chosen to get married at the Twelve Apostles Church in Hatfield. Having once been an Anglican church means that first-time visitors are often taken by surprise when they see the seemingly-unassuming building is richly decorated with a mosaic aisle, gold screens and beautiful iconography. We have photographed many weddings here and are always grateful to Father Joseph Paliouras for making us feel welcome and granting permission to photograph and film in their church.
No traditional Greek Cypriot wedding takes place without the appropriate preparations, and we had two teams of photographers and video operators meet the bride and groom in their respective family homes as they got ready for the main event. The stolisma is a tradition that has changed very little over the centuries, involving music, incense and the tying of a red scarf, or zoni, around the waist of the bride and groom. It can be emotional, particularly when it is time for parents to bless their child as they embark on the next part of life’s journey, but it always ends on an uplifting note, and the bride and groom made their way to the church in a Rolls Royce and a sleek Aston Martin respectively.
We really enjoyed working at this wedding at Sopwell House. It is a highly picturesque venue with 12 acres of grounds outside and many decorative features within. While guests were tucking into their welcome drinks and canapes captured by our second team, our main team of photographer and cameraman made the most of the romantic gardens for the post-wedding photos with just the bride and groom, as well as some group shots with their wedding party. The groomsmen certainly got into the spirit, as you can see!
The couple entered the ballroom to music and a shower of confetti, making their way around the glittering dancefloor that was later the stage for plenty of action, including the money dance and other traditional Greek Cypriot dancing. The video highlights show how fantastic the room looked, with gorgeous rose topiary “trees” as table centrepieces, and the flashing lights built into the dancefloor.
● The confetti throw. These images can only really be done once, so a photographer relies on guests to get it right and for it not to be wet and windy. All the elements came together, and these shots are perfect.
● The way Tim looked at his bride with complete and utter adoration, as if couldn’t believe his luck. He backed this up with a moving speech about how he had felt like “the luckiest guy” when Maria had agreed to go on a first date with him, and how he still felt that way now that she was his wife.
● The venue. Sopwell House is a fantastic venue not only because it is so photogenic, but also because the staff are so professional and helped to make our job photographing this Sopwell House wedding stress-free.
Congratulations to Maria and Tim, and thank you for asking us to be part of your wedding at Sopwell House.