France is beautiful at any time of year, but is particularly stunning in the summer months, so making the trip to be Kasia and Connor’s Chateau la Durantie wedding photographer was a wonderful prospect.
Kasia and Connor held their wedding at Chateau la Durantie in July, when the sun was shining and the chateau’s gardens were in full bloom. The chateau is in the scenic Dordogne region, about an hours drive from the airport at Limoges.
Kasia and Connor’s friends and family travelled mostly from the UK for the wedding, and were welcomed by beaming sunshine, which lasted for the entire wedding day.
Connor prepared one of the most magical proposals we have heard of – planning a New Year’s trip which he left Kasia hints for – including a warm hat, a light bulb and a compass. Finally, he revealed that they were going to Tromso in Norway, to see the spectacular Northern Lights. The trip sounded amazing – husky sledging, a tour to see the aurora borealis for New Year’s Eve and a whale watching expedition on New Year’s Day! As Kasia and Connor posed for photos underneath the Northern Lights, Connor dropped to one knee and proposed. We now knew we had this iconic photograph as a benchmark for our wedding photography!
The day of the wedding was relaxed and full of laughter. Kasia and Connor’s huge dog ran around the venue, entertaining us, as well as the guests. Kasia got ready in a room in the chateau with her mother and bridesmaids. We had time for some bridal portraits, which is always a very calm, reflective time. Kasia looked stunning in her gorgeous wedding dress, with a delicate train cascading behind her.
Meanwhile, Connor and his groomsmen relaxed with cigars and a game of pool, drinking Southern Comfort as they waited for the ceremony. We shot some great photographs of them hanging out together, with the vibrant colours from the billiards room contrasting perfectly with their classic suits.
As the ceremony began, Kasia’s father was waiting for her on the beautiful staircase leading down to the gardens. The ceremony took place outside in the balmy Mediterranean sun, where Kasia’s father walked her through winding alleys to the arch that had been erected especially for the wedding.
The ceremony was over quickly, with some touching readings, before Connor and his new bride led the guests to the reception, which took place outside the chateau. One of the best things about a destination wedding is usually the fact that so much can be done outside, giving a laid back feel to the occasion. This is in stark contrast to working as a wedding photographer in London!
Champagne flowed during the reception, before the guests were directed to the other side of the venue for the wedding breakfast and speeches. We especially enjoyed Connor’s speech, which was full of witty anecdotes and kept everyone laughing.
We managed to steal Kasia and Connor away for their couple portraits, and were so impressed by how they followed our advice and were easy to direct, both being naturals in front of the camera. We spent 40 minutes with them around the chateau, exploring the picturesque surroundings and making use of the muted late afternoon light. We love establishing trust with the couples that we work with, as it gives such amazing results. Kasia and Connor were so in harmony with our directions that we captured one of the most stunning couple portraits we have taken this year.
We even took some photographs of them with their lovely dog, who was just as much a natural in front of the lens!
After the couple portraits, Kasia and Connor returned to their guests, where they enjoyed a three-course meal of delicious French cuisine.
Kasia and Connor’s cake was simple and tasteful, topped with fresh roses and circled by candles. They cut the cake outside, so we could take photographs of them surrounded by their friends and family in the fading sunlight.
The first dance took place outside in the soft evening light, before everyone went to the marquee for the party to finish off the night, and the perfect wedding in France.
Working as a wedding photographer gives so many opportunities to share magical moments with couples and their friends and family. Spending a day as a Chateau la Durantie wedding photographer was a wonderful change to shooting weddings in the UK, and one of these truly magical moments!