Walking into the White Star Grand Hall for their 30 James Street wedding breakfast and all their friends and family cheering and clapping just for them. At that moment Jenna and Micheal felt unbelievably lucky. A unique moment that they will never forget.
Here is their story…
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY STORY
Hi! we are Jenna and Micheal from Liverpool and we’re delighted to share with you our 30 James Street wedding photography story.
Our story begins when we met at work in 2011, we started car-sharing and eventually, our friendship flourished, turning into something a lot more. After a year of living together, we got engaged on a family holiday on in Albufeira, Portugal.
The engagement was really romantic, Michael organised a meal then asked if I wanted to take a walk along the beachfront to the lookout point so he could take some photographs of the ships. I was unknowingly trying to boycott his plans by asking if we could go to a cocktail bar!
We walked to the lookout point holding hands, Michael took some photographs and as I turned around to start walking back he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him and, I said… “Are you messing?!” To which he replied ‘Errr No!’… I then realised it wasn’t a joke, I cried and then, of course, said Yes!
THE PERFECT LIVERPOOL WEDDING VENUE
We initially started looking at countryside venues, marquees and tipi’s but couldn’t find anything that suited us. We eventually decided that we wanted to get married in Liverpool in the Summer. By the time we started visiting venues, it was September and with less than a year to book our dream venue availability was limited.
We visited 3 Liverpool wedding venues, Oh Me, Oh My, The Shankley Hotel and 30 James Street Hotel Liverpool – Home of the Titanic. We really liked Oh Me, Oh My as a quirky venue with the amazing roof terrace overlooking the waterfront but 30 James Street hotel – which was our final visit, was the venue that stole our hearts. It was so unique and beautiful we felt it was perfect for our wedding in the city centre.
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My 30 James Street wedding began with bridal preparations at my Mum’s house in Liverpool. My Dad is no longer with us so getting ready in the family homemade it personal. Wes, our wedding photographer took a beautiful picture of my Morille wedding dress hanging in the living room window and he discreetly placed my Dad’s guitar next to it, it’s such a magical photo.
Family is really important, so as a small personal touch (even though he didn’t make it to the ceremony), we dressed the family dog in a little doggy tuxedo, which matched the groom’s men outfits.
Our photographer, Wes suggested to be ready in plenty of time, this was great advice because it meant I was really relaxed and I got the opportunity to do a ‘bridal reveal’ which wasn’t something I thought about, but it made for some priceless memories especially as my Mum got really emotional seeing me in my dress.
MORILEE WEDDING DRESS
My wedding dress was Morilee by Madeline Gardner, I visited 3 local wedding shops and tried on various styles of dresses to find out what I wanted. Initially, I thought I wanted a long sleeve, vintage lace dress however after trying one of these on I realised it just didn’t suit me.
The ladies at Natalie Ann Brides were fabulous and made me step out of my comfort zone by trying different styles of dresses until I found ‘the one’ which was the complete opposite of what I would have chosen.
My Morilee dress was a sweetheart neckline, embroidered lace and fishtail fitting by Designer Moriee by Madeline Gardner. I felt absolutely amazing in this beautiful dress and it had the wow factor with my Mum and bridesmaids so I knew it was the one! The dress was a perfect choice for a 30 James Street wedding and I feel it complimented the decor of the venue perfectly.
ALL SAINTS CHURCH CHILDWALL
Even though we’d planned a romantic 30 James Steet wedding, from a personal point of view, I had always imagined myself getting married in a church; so it was important we were able to do this. After visiting our vicar at All Saints Childwall, he agreed we could get married however we would need to attend church 3 times a month for 6 months leading up to the wedding.
All Saints Church in Childwall is stunning, it is designated as a Grade I listed building and is the only medieval church remaining in the Metropolitan borough of Liverpool.
We hired Amadeus Chamber Choir who sang various hymns as guests arrived and during the signing of the register. The three hymns we chose were Come to a Wedding, Lord of the Dance and Guide me, O thou great redeemer. All popular hymns which were easy for our guests to join in along with the choir.
Readings were Corinthians 13:4-8 and an Extract from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin read by two of our closest friends. I walked down the aisle with my Mum to the traditional Bridal March by Wagner and the wedding recessional was Mendelssohn’s Wedding March.
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING RECEPTION
On arrival to 30 James Street Liverpool, we had a drinks reception in Carpathia Restaurant were Prosecco and Beers were served for an hour and a half prior to the wedding breakfast. This was just enough time to mingle with our guests and to get some simple portraits of just the both of us.
Even though we love Wes’s documentary style of wedding photography, Wes suggested we do two quick portrait sessions, this worked really well as we got two completely different set’s of images (that are now proudly displayed on the walls in our home) it also meant that I got some alone time with my new husband.
30 JAMES STREET ROOMS
Our 30 James Street wedding breakfast took place in the White Star Grand Hall within 30 James Street hotel. The White Star Grand Hall is the gem of this historic building, a bright and airy space which features 15-foot Georgian windows, originally restored ceilings and beautiful chandeliers.
The room has its own bar and can accommodate seating for up to 210 people, The White Star Grand Hall was the perfect place for us to celebrate being married.
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING MENU
Food was an important part of our wedding and this was all done in house by 30 James Street wedding catering, our guests were treated to a 3-course meal in the Grand Hall, the menu included a starter of lemon-scented prawns with pickled cucumber, cherry tomatoes, gem lettuce and cocktail sauce. Main: Supreme of chicken with a sweet mustard sauce served with dauphinoise potatoes. Dessert: Raspberry and white chocolate cheesecake and berries.
My top tip when planning a wedding would be to decide on a style of wedding you like and not to get too overwhelmed, go with your gut feeling of what style of wedding suits you both as a couple.
Finding a church, wedding venue and a photographer you trust early on is really important to ensure there is availability for all 3! this can prove difficult when planning a wedding in under 12 months.
For our the wedding theme, we wanted a classic and timeless look for the wedding and the venue was a lot of inspiration for our overall look and feel. As 30 James Street is themed around the Titanic we took a lot of inspiration from the décor and history of the venue.
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING THEME
I wanted to ensure our 30 James Street wedding was captured by a great photographer, and most importantly to ensure my guests had plenty of food, drink and entertainment.
I worked with a graphic designer, wedding stylist and florist to put together a brief for how I wanted everything to tie into together. I wanted to ensure all touchpoints from the wedding invites, centrepieces, flowers and stationary all tied into our classic Titanic-themed wedding.
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY
Choosing our 30 James Street wedding photographer was really important. I had been following Wes Simpson for a few years on social media, every time I saw a wedding photograph posted by Wes on his FaceBook page I instantly felt the emotion he’d captured – even though these people were complete strangers to me it was something I felt a real connection with through his photographs.
Wes’s natural style and ability to capture unique moments in his photography was something I admired, so as soon as I got engaged I messaged him to arrange a meeting.
Wes visited our home and showed us a portfolio of stunning albums, he made us feel at ease by taking the time to listen to what we wanted and making logical suggestions for the desired outcomes. From that moment, Wes was always available to answer any questions we had and give us advice on timings which helped the day go perfectly.
During our 30 James Street wedding reception, Wes made full use of the venue and took pictures of things we didn’t even see or knew about.
There are many locations within the hotel for those looking to take formal photographs, especially the Carpathia Champagne Bar & Restaurant, both of which offer breathtaking views over the Liverpool skyline and make for stunning photographs in your wedding album.
Remember your wedding day is about you as a couple, so enjoy every second of the build-up to the wedding. When the big day arrives, take a step back and enjoy every moment of the day. Your love for each other as a couple will shine through so don’t stress about the small stuff.
Following our 30 James street wedding, we had a 3-week road trip Honeymoon around America in a Mustang visiting San Francisco, Yosemite, Carmel, Monterey, LA, San Diego and Vegas! An unbelievable experience and an unforgettable Honeymoon!
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING PHOTOS
There are so many great pictures from our 30 James Street wedding, we love them all! but the one that stands out is of us walking across the Liverpool Dock Road holding hands and stopping traffic; Wes really does capture ‘the moments in between the moments.’
We recommend Wes to everyone, he is so passionate about his work and this is truly reflected in the moments he captured on our wedding day. Looking through our album takes us back to our wedding day and all the emotions come flooding back – this is absolutely priceless and a unique talent you won’t find in many photographers.
ABOUT THE HOTEL
30 James Steet Liverpool is a wedding venue in the heart of the city. The venue comes with a rich heritage as Home of The Titanic and is known locally as the streaky bacon building due to its unique appearance.
The hotel offers luxury accommodation within a stunning and historic building. Situated opposite the famous Liverpool waterfront and within walking distance of the Albert Dock and Three Graces.
As soon as you entre 30 James Street, it feels like you’ve been transported back in time as you immerse yourself in the opulence of a bygone era as you enjoy surroundings that impressively recreate the experience of first-class passengers boarding the world’s premier cruise lines.
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING PACKAGES
30 James Street weddings are held in The White Star Grand Hall, an expansive room which was originally designed as a first-class lounge and ticketing area for the White Star Shipping Company. The room comes complete with its own bar and seating for up to 210 people.
30 James Street wedding packages include a summer wedding package from £8,500 and a winter wedding package from £7,500 and a signature package from £9,500. You can contact the venue for their latest offers on 0151 236 0166.
30 JAMES STREET WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER
Are you planning a wedding and looking for a 30 James Street wedding photographer?
Many couples worry about wedding photography, awkward poses and it eating into their day. I photograph you at your best and the moments that matter so that you have meaningful pictures and a wedding you love.
Take a look at my portfolio for examples of work, the blog for the latest weddings and my approach page to photographing your wedding. Contact me today with any questions, to schedule an appointment or to book me to be your Liverpool wedding photographer.