A Greek Orthodox Wedding At St Sophia’s Cathedral And Afterwards At The May Fair Hotel London
I’m so delighted to share highlights of Doros and Alison’s London wedding at St Sophia’s Cathedral and The May Fair Hotel with you today. It was a really special day for so many reasons, and the type of wedding that we photographers love to shoot. Heaps of emotion, stunning locations, exuberant celebrations, and the most welcoming and fun loving people you could wish for. Add to this having your bestie (Kirsten Mavric) along to second shoot for you, and it all added up to the most brilliant day.
We both began our cover at 11am, Kirsten in Bounds Green at Doros’s family home, and me at The May Fair Hotel with Alison and the girls. The Groom’s pre wedding preparation, known as the Stolisma, are traditionally accompanied by a Greek violinist. The best man, Andrew (also known as his koumbaro), and Doros’s close family helped him to dress. It’s just one of the many rituals that make a Greek wedding a joy to photograph.
Mean while I spent the morning with Alison, her bridesmaid Janine, mum, daughter, and aunt, as they put the finishing touches to their hair and makeup and wedding day looks.
Alison chose a gorgeous strapless gown by Sassi Holford, with a structured bodice and A-line skirt (and pockets – yay). She teamed it with metallic Sophia Webster heels, ‘Chiara’, complete with 3D butterfly wings. Her intricate and and stylish ‘up-do’ was adorned with a silver vine leaf chain, and a beautiful and delicate veil. She looked absolutely stunning! As did Janine in steel grey, and her little flower girl in grey tulle, floral crown, and ballet pumps. Alison’s bouquet, created by Your London Florist, featured beautiful white peonies, blush roses, wax flower, and eucalyptus. This was one very stylish bridal party!
We travelled to St Sophia’s Cathedral by black cab. I love being able to travel with a bride to capture this part of the day. The excitement. The nerves. The giggles. All great fun. As we arrived the couple’s son welcomed his mum through the cab window with a resounding ‘I LOVE YOU MUM!‘ I had to get a grip, and it wasn’t even directed at me! 🙂
Once inside the Cathedral I can honestly say it’s intricate Byzantine architecture literally took my breath away. The fairly modest exterior really gives no hint at what lies within, and I was so pleased I had a new wide angled lens with me to do it justice.
The bridal party entered to the sound of a traditional choir. Light streamed through windows above, and was enhanced by the soft light of twinkly candles. The ceremony was terribly moving, and despite the grand surroundings, deeply personal. The rituals of the traditional Greek Orthodox wedding ceremony were honoured. Very special and also very beautiful.
Afterwards we were able to take some family group photographs in the cathedral’s adjoining courtyard, before the guests made their way on the May Fair Hotel. Mean while I travelled with Doros, Alison, and their children to a nearby park to capture a few bride, groom, and family photographs. As you can imagine, any green space in central London on a warm and sunny day fill with sun worshippers, but this all added to the fun!
Back at the hotel, the bride and groom made their grand entrance down a flight of marble stairs to the Crystal room. Accompanied by a traditional violin, they did two circuits of the dance floor to welcoming cheers and confetti cannons. Another great moment to photograph.
After a delicious meal, emotional speeches, and the cutting of the cake, the dancing began! This is always a really fun part of a Greek wedding to capture, and Kirsten and I had great fun getting in on the action to get the best shots. There is the money dance, the Kalamatianos where the ladies dance, and the groom’s dance with his koumbaro (best man), and koumbari (best men). Particularly wonderful was the spectacle of Doros and Alison’s kids dancing. It struck me how very wonderful it must be to be able to have your children with you on your wedding day, and old enough to enjoy the day and to fully appreciate how special it is. It really was such a happy joyous day for them all.
So here is a rather large selection of images from the brilliant day. Thank you Alison and Doros for making Kirsten and I feel so welcome. We absolutely loved being their to capture your day. Have a wonderful time in Madeira. Here is your preview. J x
Second Photographer – Kirsten Mavric Photography.
Hotel – The May Fair Hotel.
Dress – Sassi Holford.
Shoes – Sophia Webster.
Flowers –Your London Florist.
Makeup – Hampshire Brides.
Wedding Cake – GC Couture.
Event staging – Beyond Certainty.