On the 21st June 2014, I arrived at Gemma's parent's house to find it bustling with girls chatting and singing away in pyjamas, and a sense of calm settled in the air. Gemma sat styling her sister's hair, the heat from the straighteners curling in the sunlight, before moving onto helping everyone with their makeup.
She had spent the past year planning this day with her fiance Daniel, while also completing her final year of university. Her hard work shone through with every beautiful detail, including matching clutch bags filled with lip balms, tissues and earrings for the girls. The bridesmaids had gypsophila woven into their hair and changed into flowing light pink dresses.
After her mother had helped her into her gorgeous gown, Gemma walked down the stairs and into the garden as her father and row of bridesmaids stood with their eyes kept tightly shut. They opened them, Gemma spun around, her father beamed with pride.
We travelled to the ceremony venue in a vintage Bentley, under a bright blue sky. They had chosen to get married at The Christian Centre, which was their place of worship, and which had become like a second home to them. Excitement rang through the building as everyone sat waiting.
Purple lighting shone down. A band played on the stage. Daniel waited at the front, turning around from time to time, tears in his eyes and a big smile across his face. The bridesmaids filed down the aisle, and then came Gemma. Daniel looked like the happiest man in the world. They were so young, and yet they shared such a special connection. Their love for one another was apparent to everyone who had ever met them.
I had never experienced a service quite like what followed. People sang, and sang with all their heart. Raised their hands in the air, cheered, laughed. After they had said their vows and exchanged rings, Gemma and Daniel, newly wed, walked back down the aisle as a confetti canon showered them and people clapped and smiled.
Back inside the charming old car, we made our way to Goosedale Conference Centre, which had been decorated with flowers, vintage cameras and tea lights glowing in jars. Their cake was stunning, and matched the bouquets of flowers. Blessed with beautiful weather, we took our group shots in a nearby field with a countryside backdrop, and then had some time alone to capture a series of precious couple shots.
The rest of the evening involved speeches that were both moving and humorous, as well as a quick dash back outside to shoot in the setting sun. Gemma and Daniel had their first dance with a twinkling chandelier and everyone crowded round tho watch. Later, people mingled outside in the warm air and inside under the dance floor lights. Gemma changed into a beautiful second dress, shorter and made of lace, so that she could dance away into the night with Daniel and all their loved ones.
Throughout the day, #dgforever could be seen written on chalkboards, and soon spread across Instagram and other social media sites. They had used this hashtag for years, and what a wonderful way for people to be able to share their photos and memories.
What a fantastic, inspiring couple. They are clearly adored by so many people. I truly wish them all the best, and feel very lucky to have been a part of their wedding day.