Wedding Planning Tips

Happiest couple getting married in Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide

I made this Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide to help you find the best suppliers around Manchester. A wedding day well prepared assures you to spend the day stress free and to enjoy it as much as you can!

I know the organization can be a huge task so I’d love to help you to make the best day of your life unforgettable! Enjoying your day surrounded by the people you love the most is the most important thing on your wedding day. The light is the second important aspects to get the best photographs that you’ll love forever. I want you to know that I will never put any kind of pressure on you during your wedding day to get great photos (neither before or after). For me, a perfect wedding is a day that reflects who you are and it’s important for me that you the photos reflect your personalities too.

I’ve been photographing weddings for nearly 6 years now and what I love is that every wedding is different. All these years gave me the experience to know that your wedding is not about the photos, it’s about you. This is why I’ll never keep you away from your lovely guests for an entire hour. However, I’ll give you some small breaks from the party to enjoy the feelings of the day just together, have time to cuddle and get some pictures of you two having fun.

Barn Norfolk wedding Cliffbarns Coralie Monnet Photographer 69



One way of creating your schedule is to know when the sun will go down ; you will then know when the light will be the best. If you plan to get a ceremony outside, then the best time would be about 2-3 hours before the sunset.

I usually start covering the getting ready about 3 hours before the ceremony. It gives me enough time to take pictures of the bride, the groom, your closest ones and the environment. Before the ceremony, I highly encourage you to do a first look, which takes around 20 minutes, to relax and enjoy this magic moment together. When there is a first look, I usually do some family portraits before the ceremony, if there isn’t one or if the light is too harsh, we’re gonna do them during the cocktail. I recommand it to be maximum 30-45 minutes so you’ll have time to enjoy your reception.

After the ceremony, we always take some time to get some couple portraits. It will give you some time to really admire how stunning each other look and it will allow your guests to get ready to the cocktail. At the end of the cocktail, while your guests are heading to the dinner, or during the dinner (depending on the light) we’re gonna escape for a few minutes to take some portraits of you two with the beautiful golden hour light. On a typical 10 hour wedding day, I’m usually able to photograph you from getting ready until the party.
It’s important to get a loose schedule to give you some time in case something get delayed. It will allow you to enjoy more your wedding day and not to feel stressed by the time.

Example of a 10 hour coverage:
2:00 Getting Ready, 3:30 First look, 4:00 Family Portraits, 5:00 Ceremony, 6:30 Cocktail Hour, 8:00 Dinner, 8:30 Sunset, 9:00 Speeches/Reception, 10:30 First Dance, 12:00am End Coverage.

The best wedding suppliers from the Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide



I’m sure that you’re probably not thinking about it right now, but as I told you above, the light has a primordial role in order to get beautiful photos. If you’re having an outdoor ceremony, the best is to have it about 2-3 hours before the sunset maximum to avoid having your guests squinting their eyes and sweating in a harsh light. If you don’t want to have a late ceremony during the summer you can still find a nice spot in the shade for your ceremony, like a forest or a historic building for example.

If you can, don’t be afraid to start your day later (and to enjoy the beginning of the day with your closest friends and family for example) and to find a ceremony spot that you would dream about!

Couple kissing in the sunset by one of the best manchester wedding photographer


 Manchester Wedding Planners

A lot of my couples plan their wedding day by themselves. Which is great when you have a lot of time and if you are a creative person. However, it can be a real time consuming and wedding planners are great to give you a chilled and stress free experience.

Hiring a wedding planner that will organize and/or coordinate your wedding day and every detail of this special day will allow you to be living and enjoying the best feelings of having your favourite people around you to celebrate Love.

I recommend One Stylish Day, Pocketful of Dreams, and Inner City Weddings.

The best wedding designer from the Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide

The best wedding planner from Manchester


Manchester Wedding Venues

Manchester and the North West of England has so many amazing venues that you can hire to celebrate your love. Here are some of my favourite, but if you want to get married in another venue, in your garden, in the wildness of the nature or in a secret place, I’d also love to capture this moment with you!
The Albert Hall, ManchesterAbbeydale Picture House, Sheffield – Five Four Studios, ManchesterManchester Art GalleryVictoria Warehouse, ManchesterOwen House wedding barn, CheshireThe Portico Library, Manchester The Deaf Institute, ManchesterBrosterfield farm, Peak District – or a little bit further, the cool new venue the Giraffe Shed in Wales.

You can also hire a marquee to celebrate your wedding surrounded by beautiful landscapes. The ones from Posh Frocks & Wellies are amazing.

Following are some galleries from weddings I photographed in unique venues around Manchester:

Pamela & John’s wedding at the Manchester Art Gallery – Joasia & James’s wedding in a Posh Frocks & Wellies’s marquee at the Brosterfield farm in the Peak District. (coming soon)

Bride in one of the best wedding venues around Manchester


Couple Photos Locations

Before getting married I recommend you to do an engagement session to be at ease with the camera on your wedding day. It’s always a fun moment to spend together and a great day hanging out, talking about music, movies, and food! Also at your wedding you will feel that a real friend is taking pictures of you instead of someone you barely know.

During your wedding day, if we have enough time, we can also go somewhere special you cherish to get some cool couple pictures. I love the Peak District (who doesn’t!!), or to stay closer to Manchester, in the Northern Quarter, Deansgate, Didsbury, and a lot of other places in the city center. If we don’t have the time to drive anywhere, I always find cool places around the venue but I never forget that the most important are you two and the love you have for each other, everything else is just a tiny detail.

You can get an idea of the kind of laid back engagement session I take looking at Joasia & James or Hannah & Jon couple sessions in the Peak District. (coming soon)

The best couple session location around Manchester


Manchester Hair & Makeup Artists

Because they did an amazing job with my brides or just because they are great, I recommend Laura Taff, Katy Brody, Charlie Murray. It’s super important to do a trial run and to show each other inspiration photos (Pinterest is great for that) to be sure that you will feel amazing and yourself on your wedding day.

The best make up artist from in Manchester


Wedding Dress Designers & Boutiques

Boutiques: Rock the Frock Bridal, CheshireJean Jackson Couture, ManchesterGlory Days, York
Designers: Kate BeaumontRolling in Roses –  Mia Sylvia

The best dress boutiques from the Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide


Manchester Florists

There are so many fantastic florists around Manchester so it’s hard to choose some but if you want something totally bespoke you should definitely contact one of these ones!

Frog FlowersMaybe MaySassFlowerCampbells Flowers, SheffieldMoss and Clover, Sheffield

The best Florists from the Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide


Vegetarian Caterers & Cakes

Because I’m a vegetarian, here are some great caterers that offer amazing veggie food: Luncheonette McrPizza PeddlersThe Eighth DayCowherds Food Truck –  Tibetan Kitchen Food TruckPJ TasteThe Cheshire Dining Experience

But no worries, even if you decide to have a barbecue at you wedding I will not judge you!

Cakes: Marie AntoinetteLittle Button Bakery –  Trove FoodsCherry Blossom CakesPinkcocoa Sarah – Vegan Baked Sheffield

The best Food truck from the Manchester

DJ’s & Bands

It’s really important to choose the right band or the DJ for your wedding. Good DJs will always allow you to give them your favourite songs and they will also pass the kind of music that you like. If you want your family and friends to be dancing like crazy on the dance floor, here are some really good people around Manchester!

South West Band –  Michael Mulholland acousticPanda PalmKonnect Music UK

Bride dancing at her wedding party in Manchester Art Gallery


I hope you enjoyed reading this Manchester Alternative Wedding Guide and that it help you find the best suppliers around Manchester. Let me know if you have any questions or if you want to add another great supplier to the list!