“We absolutely love LOVE the photos. They are amazing. It’s like you were everywhere without being seen. In all honesty I’ve already viewed them 10 times already and I’m still not done.”

Najma and Jeff

Documentary wedding photographer Birmingham's wedding as featured on The English Wedding Blog


Birmingham Museum of Art Wedding

This was the first time I’d photographed a Birmingham Museum of Art Wedding and no wonder. Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery has only just started to host weddings so I’ve been privileged to be one of the first to shoot a full wedding at this stunning Grade 1 listed building in the heart of my home town Birmingham.

There are various rooms available for weddings. Each having their own individual style and ambience. So Najma and Jeff used The Waterhall for their wedding ceremony. They used the Industrial Gallery with its beautiful collection of fine art on display for their wedding breakfast. To conclude the evening with their dance routine they chose the Edwardian Tea room for their evening reception.

There was also a treat in store for them both. “Dippy the dinosaur” was visiting the museum so they also had exclusive use of the room where the world famous Diplodocus was being exhibited, for their drinks reception.

Their Wedding Day Story

Before arriving at the museum, I started with the morning preparations with Najma and her friends. To say we had fun was an understatement. Our conversations ranged from the ridiculous to how to get rid of a Jelly Fish sting (the answer is to apparently wee on it – no, not on the jelly fish, but the sting!)

This meant they were relaxed and having fun making for great documentary photography.

Then I got ahead of Najma before the ceremony started to capture Jeff and his guests before things kicked off.

The images below will now do the rest of the story-telling of how the day went. So I hope you enjoy them.

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Interview with Najma and Jeff About Their Wedding

Before The Wedding

How You Met. We met at University and studied our Doctorates together

How He Proposed. Without me realising he had asked my best friend to arrange a catch up with me to get me out the house for a few hours. I came back to the house to find all of the lights switched off and a brightly lit up arrow with a post it note underneath it saying “follow the arrows”. More arrows and post it notes led me out to our garden.

Jeff had laid out the garden walkway with candles on either side and rose petals all the way up to the archway in the garden which had lights wrapped all around it. I stood under the archway and he came running out and he looked so nervous (something he just usually isn’t) and he spoke some beautiful words!

Wedding

The Bride Wore. A non traditional outfit by south Asian and western standards – not white or red. It was mint and gold in colour with purple and peach flowers embroidered all over. I wore a white and lightly beaded dress for the evening.

The Groom Wore. A “Tailor me” blueish heavy weave 3 piece suit from Moss Bross. He had a flowery fabric lining and the date of our wedding and our initials stitched on the inside

Jewellery/Accessorie. Gold earrings and a tiny mint green pendant for a necklace

Hair/Make-up Done. Kerry Baines – who else?

Flowers. We wanted flowers that complemented my dress so we went for very pastel colours and a few bright purple carnations. We went with the Flower centre Birmingham who were brilliant

Invitations. Flowery theme – by Feelgoodinvites. Jeff created some of the additional pages to the invites himself and we enjoyed wax sealing them!

Ceremony Place. Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery – The Waterhall

Wedding Theme/Style. Hard to describe – I don’t think we ever narrowed the theme down Vintage, Rustic, Victorian and English Asian fusion

Reception

Reception Place. Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery – The Gas Hall, Industrial Gallery and Edwardian Tea rooms

What Made You Choose This Venue. Jeff is a massive history geek so it was his idea to check out the Museum. We had been on a lot of dates where Jeff would take me to various historical places and ‘woo’ me with his knowledge. It is during these dates and within these historical places that my love grew for Jeff.

For his 30’s birthday we spent the night in the Natural History Museum in London because he thought it would be ‘cool’ to spend a night in the Museum and to sleep under Dippy the dinosaur. We had been to Birmingham Museum and Arts Gallery once or twice before and when we went to see it as a potential wedding venue we both just knew it suited us and our relationship.

So we scrapped all other venue ideas and went with the Museum. Then later we heard Dippy the dinosour was going to be in the Gashall on our wedding day so we tweaked some of our initial wedding ideas to make sure we had Dippy at our wedding.

First Dance Song. UB40 – Can’t help falling in love

Reception Details

Cake. Kimmies Kitchen who always makes amazing cakes. We went for a watercolour cake with red velvet and a white ganache at the base, a white and chocolate sponge with salted caramel for the second layer and a coconut sponge and pistachio butter cream filling as the top layer

Decor Elements. We didn’t need to decorate the Museum much at all- the venue speaks for itself and has its on style Victorian/ Edwardian

Unique Details. Jeff made all of the wedding favours himself, including the table seating plan and the place names. He spent months planting and growing cactus seeds from scratch so that each guest would get their own cactus which I think was a pretty unique idea and touch.

Most Memorable Moment

Najma’s Answer. It’s hard to pin it down to one specific moment, for me the thing I remember the most about the day is how I felt. It was the general feeling of just being so happy, feeling fortunate and content that stays with me as a memory

Jeff’s Answer. When I saw my bride to be walk down the isle – it was such a perfect moment

Honeymoon

Place. Dubai and Maldives – lovely just to kick back and relax and have no massive schedule of things to do

Wedding Advice

Some things will not go to plan on the day. Just let it go. Nobody else knows or will even realise that, that particular thing didn’t go to plan as they have no idea what the plan was in the first place. Make sure you relax the day before as it’s the only chance you’ll get to relax for the next 24 hours.

One last thing, if you’re looking for a wedding photographer, stop looking and book Clive. He’s got such a natural talent and passion that you will not regret choosing him.


What Is a Documentary Wedding Photographer?

This is an often asked question. In simple terms it means being an observer and recorder of your wedding, with little interference. To bring back a faithful record with minimal interruption to the flow of the day.

Read More About My Documentary Wedding Photography

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