What words would you want to be associated with your wedding? Chateaux, South of France, Vineyard, Rustic, Rolling Countryside, 30+ Degrees and Sunny? Well, Hayley and Bradley had it all for their Chateaux Wedding in France! This is pretty much my idea of the perfect wedding to photograph- I was so excited to be involved and loved every minute. It also helped that I could speak French with the suppliers and guests- It certainly comes in handy every now and again!
Now that’s enough from me, let me handover to Hayley & Bradley to tell you a bit more about their wedding.
What was your budget?
What made your day unique?
Our day was perfect! We were the first to get married at the venue and were so pleased so many people travelled to France to celebrate with us. The bride knew the area and has always said that part of France is her spiritual home. Domaine de Rouchon is a beautiful family home, with a stunning driveway of poplar trees and each visit brings a sense of wonder and relaxation as you approach the house. This is something the bride and groom experienced on every visit and they were so pleased that there guest were able to experience that feeling with them at their wedding.
What was the vibe of your day? What was the inspiration behind the styling?
We had 100 guests, all close friends and family and the day had a relaxed, intimate vibe to it. The marriage took place in the shaded barn. The wedding party moved to the patio for the champagne reception and the wedding breakfast took place under the marquees under the lawn. it was hot with lots of sunshine and some guests enjoyed the pool. The beautiful stone house is set against the backdrop of a river on one side and vineyards and tall green trees on the other so we chose a rustic style in keeping with the setting.
Do you have a favourite moment of your day?
One of our favourite moments was when we moved off to have our photos taken in the neighboring vineyards during dinner. It was the first time we had been alone together since the ceremony and our photographer James was fantastic and was able to capture some stunning shots as the sunset across the vineyards. As we walked back to dinner our videographer Max flew a drone above us and we have fun pictures smiling up to the sky making peace signs. As the ground was uneven the groom carried the bride piggyback style into dinner and all the guests cheered!
Do you have any advice for people planning their wedding?
We kept multiple lists and checked tasks off. We each took responsibility for a group of suppliers and would schedule time in to sit down together to review what had progressed. We chose to hire a wedding planner and are so happy we did. She was English but lived in France and spoke fluent French so she helped with talking to suppliers. She organized everything on the day, including coordinating all the suppliers and wait staff, taking away a lot of stress from us! So our advice would be 1) keep organized 2) communicate with each other and 3) if you’re able to, hire a wedding planner!
I started off the day with Hayley and her girls. With so much prep having gone into the day, there was such a sense of anticipation hovering in the air. The morning became even more special when Hayley’s Dad saw her in her dress for the first time. The tears were soon flowing! As I’m sure every father of the Bride can attest to, there aren’t many moments like this in a lifetime! Everything took place on the grounds of her Godmother’s Country House near Bordeaux so there was not long to wait, nor to travel, until the ceremony.
A Chateaux Wedding in France
The ceremony took place in the outhouse on the grounds and Hayley and Bradley deliberately kept things simple so that the beauty of the location could shine through. It was such a beautiful ceremony, with such a familial vibe. Everyone was gathered around the bride and groom, with their children looking on as well. It felt so personal.
Onto the reception and it was the picture of community. No matter if not everyone knew each other, everyone just gathered together for an afternoon of pure fun! The reception for this Chateaux Wedding in France was held in a marquee within the grounds of this beautiful setting. The speeches were all amazing with Bradley getting Hayley in tears (always a triumph for a groom’s speech in my books!). The night ended up on the dance floor, with everyone rocking out to the playlist Bradley had expertly crafted. All in all, one heck of a celebration!
As you can imagine, I got pretty excited about the couple portrait shoots for this one! And, I actually had the opportunity to do two- I was so spoilt! Wondering through the vineyards and the coppices of trees, I was in my element. The light was my best friend on that day. It had a beautiful, only to be found in the South of France, softness to it. So THANK YOU to Hayley and Bradley for the best weekend of wedding fun at a Chateaux Wedding in France- I had a blast!
Check out their English wedding (part one!) here– together they make for quite a story!
Supplier shout out:
Wedding Planner: Your Wedding Planner