Naomi + James (4 of 49)

We love an engagement shoot on Festival Brides. Not every one shares the same view and they can often be labelled as a waste of money or as being self indulgent. We have always taken a much more positive and practical view. Engagement shoots can play such an important role in making sure you get the best out of your wedding photos. You get to know your photographer, test out shots, relax in front of the camera and decide on what you do and don’t like from the finished photos. Most importantly, you get to enjoy your engagement high before it gets snapped away prematurely once you start planning your wedding. Or if it was snapped away, relive it again! I remember so clearly those first feelings of being engaged. You can’t stop smiling. You feel so proud to be wearing your engagement ring and also secure in the knowledge that the person you love the most, loves you enough to want to spend the rest of their life with you. It’s a wonderful place to be and I think celebrating that with an engagement shoot is an awesome thing.

When the cleverly named husband and wife team, Beard and Mane (such a cool name!) got in touch with Festival Brides to share Naomi and James’ engagement shoot, I instantly fell in love with it. I loved the beach location, the quirky and fun style of the shoot, how comfortable and happy they both look together and how much fun they had. You can also see that they are getting in some good practice for their wedding photos as well (cue the ‘natural shots!’). Most of all, you can tell that the shoot has made them even more excited about their wedding which is most definitely a very good thing!

We asked Naomi and James to tell us about how they met, their engagement shoot and the plans for their wedding.

Look out from Beard and Mane’s take on the shoot at the end of the post.

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How did you guys meet?

We met as housemates! I (Naomi) moved to Watford for an internship and James was renting a room in the same house as me over the summer. We became friends really quickly as we also worked together and it wasn’t long before we realised something was going on

What did you do for your first date?

We went bowling and to a games arcade. It was great fun…James won!

Who proposed and how?

James proposed on his 22nd Birthday. It was all a great surprise although I was sure he was up to something. He told me we were going rock climbing in London so I would need a change of clothes. We ended up in the New Forest where we went for a walk in the forest and James proposed there.

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Can you tell us a bit about your plans for your wedding?

Our wedding is extremely laid back (like us!) with the focus being on gathering all our closest family and friends and praying, worshiping and celebrating our marriage together.

The style is quite relaxed, natural and boho. We are getting married outside on an exotic rare breeds nature reserve. So we will be getting married next to llamas, meercats and monkeys! The reception is at our church which is held in an incredible converted warehouse with lovely bare brick walls, metal beams and rustic wooden table. We are also choosing and arranging our own flowers.

Tell us about your engagement shoot?

Kerry & David of Beard & Mane Photography were are amazing photographers for our engagement shoot and will be for our wedding too. We were recommended them by friends of ours and can’t recommend them highly enough. We went to West Wittering for our shoot. I (Naomi) had spent a lot of time there before so knew it would be a beautiful location and really wanted to take James there. We both love being outside and knew we wanted to take photos at the coast. Kerry & David made us feel instantly comfortable and we had so much fun during the shoot. The photos are beautiful too and we can’t wait to see our wedding photos!

Lastly, if you could choose any festival to go to, which one would it be and why?

Open Skies in Ireland, it’s a new Christian festival, a whole weekend of non-stop music, and it’s in Ireland!!!! Pretty sure it would be a one of those festivals where you come back another person. Either that or Glastonbury, because its the big mama of festivals’

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What Beard and Mane Said….

One of our loveliest, chattiest friends in the whole world introduced this couple to us, so when they got in touch we knew we were going to have a wonderful day by the seaside. West Wittering is beautiful and these guys are beautiful so really it was a win-win all round for us. They managed the almost impossible by having a genuine conversation with one another while we ran around like bumblebees snapping away and getting back into the photography groove (our first shoot of the season!). We’re so grateful for such an excellent couple who kept us entertained during the big car journey, jumped at fish and chips and didn’t complain as we tried to direct them into “natural looking” positions. Thanks you guys, so looking forward to your wedding!

The Line Up

Photography: Beard and Mane
Location: West Wittering

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