It’s a great story really, how it came around that I was to photograph Candice and Tom’s wedding. If you see my previous story of this incredible family a few months back, you would see how me and Candice actually went to school together.

Candice and Tom decided to book me for their wedding last October after I met with them and their youngest over a coffee at my local Costa, who doesn’t love a coffee meet up? We spoke about all their wedding plans and had a look through my portfolio. Candice really reflected on the ‘natural emotion filled shots’ and said that it was exactly what she wanted. If anyone knows Candice you would know she is very specific with what she likes and won’t settle for any less, oh and isn’t afraid to say! For her to say my work is exactly what she wants was amazing and to reflect on how many years had passed since we was at school together and where our lives are now was amazing too! It wasn’t long after I left them that day that she sent me a message and said that her and Tom would love to book!

Fast forward near on a year, a pre-wedding family session down it was then on weekly countdown to Candice and Tom’s big day. On the lead up I was so excited for the day to commence. We had met a few times before hand and they even requested a USB of their pre-wedding session to have on a slideshow during their wedding breakfast. Thinking about that part of the day so many of their guests complimented on them and loved that I had done that session and then was doing their wedding. They had so many personal and special touches to the day that I couldn’t wait to capture. And I wasn’t just a photographer but a guest too! Oh yes, I got a place at a table with other family members and my own name tag. It really made the day that much more special and their families were absolutely lovely and so welcoming!

Candice and Tom married at Ye Old Plough House in Bulphan which is a small village on the outskirts of Brentwood/Upminster. Sort of in the middle of them both should I say. They had a beautiful outdoor ceremony and bridal prep at the venue too. The reception was held in the Monks barn and had amazing evening entertainment the whole night through. Ye Old Plough House has the most perfect grounds and is a barn House with so many lovely features, inducing the cutest little bridges outside which were perfect for photos!

I started my day with Candice and her bridal party around midday. With the little ones having lots of fun, Candice was having make up by Made Up By Melissa Elise and hair by her cousin Courtney. The bridesmaid dresses were from Boohoo and Debenhams and Candice’s beautiful wedding dress was from Bridal Shop, Romford. The morning was a little hectic but lots of fun. What else would you want on a wedding day? The children loved their dressing gowns bought for them by Tom and enjoyed a snack of chips before getting into their dresses. The adults all got their hair and make up done too and we even got a pre-wedding bridal party shot which was super cute!

Shortly after I rushed over to Tom with he’s groomsmen and guests arriving. Here’s a funny little story and it could really only happen to me! As I was running across the grounds to Tom my shoe completely broke. It was a total OH EM GEE moment. Luckily enough Candice has purchased flip-flops for her guests during the reception. So yes, that was me. A rustic orange dress and unicorn colour flip flops throughout the whole day. Note to self, always have a spare fair of shoes! Another note to future wedding couples, flip-flops for your guests during the reception is such a lovely extra and goes a long way, trust me! 

Patiently waiting for Candice to walk the aisle was her Husband to be, Tom. Standing top of the aisle and all the guests waiting, the bridal party started to arrive. The moment throughout the ceremony I can so clearly relive if I close my eyes was the moment Candice entered the aisle. You could hear her before you could see her, she was full of emotion and embraced the moment so beautifully. If I have ever been to the most sentimental and memorable ceremony it has to be this one. The feeling of pure joy and happiness from her was breathtaking and the photographs speak for themselves. I even got them up to show her during the wedding breakfast because I was just so overwhelmed by the emotion in them. Her uncle Damien, who walked her down the aisle, loved them too which meant to much to me!

Getting married is such an emotional moment and celebration. It was totally beautiful and I admire her strength to let all her emotions tell the perfect tale on the day. They really are the most wonderful memories. Moments throughout the ceremony were just beautiful. The ceremony ended with the Guard of Honour by Tom’s fellow work colleagues who were amazing and it paid a great tribute to the Fire Brigade. 

Following on from the ceremony was time for photos. We kept them short and sweet for formal family shots and spent a little time wandering around the grounds with the Bride and Groom. Ye Old Plough House has the most beautiful gardens with so many lovely spaces to take wedding portraits. Lots of greenery and the perfect trees that created areas of shadow and amazing lighting. I got told later on in the day by a guests that “whenever I looked around you was in a bush or something, you didn’t miss a single thing it was great!”. Which is just what I want to hear! If your a photographer and don’t get in a bush on a wedding day, you’re doing something wrong! Ha ha.

The meal was held in the Monks Barn followed by the Wedding reception. The meal was made up of 3 courses; a chicken and bacon salad, roast dinner with Lamb and a cheesecake. It was absolutely delicious and speeches afterward went down a barrel of laughter. The reception was full of joy, dancing and happiness. Candice and Tom had a big white bounce castle for the children, after they had a go of course! A Photo booth which was so much fun and some decorative hire to complement the reception space.

Overall their day was a breath of fresh air and as perfect as they could imagine. The guests partied all night long and the entertainment was fab! The children had tons of fun in the grounds and Mr and Mrs Side are one happy beautiful family. I thank them for letting me be a part of their day and being a part of their wedding journey. I wish them nothing but joy, good health and happiness.

A memorable filled day of emotion, happiness and love. Congratulations!

Dress: Bridal Shop | MUA: Made Up by Melissa Elise | Hair: Courtney | Suits: Debenhams | Bridesmaids: Boohoo | Flower Girls: Debenhams | Venue: Ye Old Plough House | Photographer: Shianne Mercer Photography


“At our wedding I’ve never felt so many emotions in one day. Shianne being the great photographer she is captured every single emotion felt in our day! It is important to have picture that you can look back on as they are the only memories you have left close to reliving that special day. I cannot explain how amazed and proud I am of the way our photographs come out. They are truly amazing and when I look at the work Shianne produced I can feel the emotions all over again! I cannot wait to see our photo book full of all the photographs that were taken as I couldn’t choose a favourite. They were all perfect!”