Murakami Photography Blog
Murakami Photography Blog

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Thursday, January 8

A Pink Wedding Gown and a Star Wars Lightsabre

Darrell and Claire's wedding at Lillibrooke Manor in Berkshire, was one of the most heartwarming wedding celebrations of the summer.

We knew that Claire and Darrell's wedding was going to be a blast when we first met them, due to the fun pre wedding engagement session with did with them in April. The idea of featuring their dogs Flo and Mavis, and the Star Wars recreation image was a big clue.

I don't know who was more excited and anxious for this wedding day to arrive, Claire or myself. It's always amazing when a Bride chooses a dress that is out of the ordinary, but Claire took it to another level with a gorgeous Maggie Sottero gown in a rich dusky pink with beaded corseted bodice. On the laces of the bodice, Claire laced in two rings you will see in the photos below, one was her grandmother's wedding band, the other was a little toy ring Darrell gave her when he proposed. A very unique and sweet touch. But that dress! She was breathtakingly beautiful in it.

The inside story about the Pink Wedding Dress, is that Claire loves anything Pink. Anything. Seriously. So much so that Darrell teased her weeks before the wedding saying "You didn't get a pink dress now did you?" Kudos to Claire for keeping that secret as well as she did, LOL. That wasn't the only secret Claire kept from Darrell however, more about that later ;)

The day of the wedding, was one of the rare Saturday's in August 2008 that didn't get rain. There was a strange orb in the sky that glowed bright and warm. We arrived at Claire's house as the Best Man, David, had just finished styling Claire's hair. Yep, the Best Man. Even before I did Claire's make up, she looked incredible. Claire and her Stepfather Chris waved the bridesmaids off as they zoomed away in the skyblue VW 1960's Camper Van that Darrell arranged as the wedding car from Dubs & Bugs. Then David and I followed them to Lillibrooke Manor where the wedding was to take place.

There was so much excitement in the air, as we all waited outside the venue for the van with Claire to arrive. When the music was cued for the bridesmaids (The Prime Minister's song from Love Actually), the guests thought it was to be a nice, subdued ceremony. But once the bridesmaids were in place, The Theme from Star Wars started, and that set the tone for the rest of the day, joy, fun and happiness for two very special people. So much laughter, it was very infectious.

There were just too many wonderful moments to write about them all here, but a few favorites for me were the speeches, When Chris (Claire's Stepfather) finished his, I don't think there was a dry eye anywhere, including myself, Darrell's speech really showed the deep love and playfulness he has for his new wife, and David (the best man aka hairstylist extraordinaire) killed us all with his speech, which included all of Darrell's former partners/lovers/romantic interests turning in their key's, raised eyebrows as a couple of dudes turned theirs in reluctantly, lol.

Another great moment was the cake cutting with Darrell's light saber, that was a first for us, and it was great!

David and I love to capture images of all the little details that went into the day, from the flowers, the table settings, favours, place cards, etc. But as we were photographing the interior of the Barn where the wedding breakfast and reception was to be held, we noticed that a female guest had laid her black hat on the bar. It made for a fun photo we thought. Later we found out that it didn't belong to anyone there and no one at the venue knew where it came from, it actually ended up vanishing by the end of the evening, so this is the 'haunted' wedding hat below, lol.

Both Claire and Darrell have families that were just amazing, especially Darrell's grandad (who is nearly 100 years old), who was one of the youngest at heart on the day. I lost count of how many sweet young things I caught him flirting with! I was so pleased that there were 5 generations represented at the wedding on Darrell's side.

Lillibrooke Manor in Berkshire was such a wonderful venue, the owners of the manor, Joseph and Mary (yep, for real), were the sweetest people ever, and so welcoming. Just lovely people.

Congratulations again to Claire and Darrell, can't wait to see you when we Trash Claire's gorgeous pink wedding dress!!!

*Update* More Stunning Pink Wedding Dress Images :)

Much Love Xx
Teri (+David)
Murakami Photography, Award Winning Wedding Photography

Wedding Favours and Stationary

Pink Wedding Dress Detail

Wedding Veil Bridal Portrait

Camper Van Wedding Car

Wedding Rings Bestman

Newly Married Celebration

Champange Wedding Toast

Lillybrooke Manor Wedding

Romantic Wedding Portrait

Pink Wedding Dress Bouquet

Pink Wedding Dress Bridal Portrait

Pink Bridal Bouquet

Lillybrooke Manor Group Image

Family Wedding Group

Bride and Mum Manor House

Wedding Pimms Toast

Wedding Couple and Grandad

Lillybrooke Manor Wedding Berkshire

Chocolate Wedding Cake

Chocolate Wedding Cake Topper

Mysterious Wedding Hat

Starwars Cake Cutting

Father Daughter Wedding Dance

Bride and Mom

Barn Wedding Berkshire First Dance

If you are planning an amazing wedding and would like beautiful romantic wedding photography, perhaps we can help, get in touch via our new website at Murakami Photography :)


  1. Anonymous5:38 pm

    What a fantastic blog - brought tears to my eyes remembering the wonderful day we all had. Thank you guys so much xxx

  2. Anonymous5:22 pm

    This is the most amazing wedding I've seen in a long time. Hope mine is this fun and can't wait to get the equipment to actually be able to shoot weddings!

  3. virginia5:45 am

    WOW what a BEAUTIFUL gown.
    I am currently looking for a pink dress, but would like something unique and stunning there are too many pink dresses that everyone is buying and I want something no one has.
    I hope to find one as beautiful as yours, as I have never seen that one before :)

  4. Anonymous2:37 pm

    Yea! I know the bride is wearing a Maggie Sottero Victoriana in pearl rose because that's what I'm wearing. Gorgeous! I am now even more excited about my dress. If you want a pink dress, Maggie Sottero or Sottero and Midgley have many of them so you're likely to find something unique.

  5. Anonymous3:55 pm

    That is my dress aswell. Im so excited now after looking at that, such a stunning dress. I just hope I look as good in it as her.

  6. Anonymous10:18 am

    evrything is beautful...I love this dress and very nice pics!

  7. Amazing Grace2:55 pm

    Wow, the pictures look so real and so down to earth, they are wonderful! ;)

  8. Anonymous2:08 am

    Can anyone tell if she's wearing a 2 hoop slip or not? I am wearing the dress, and I want it to look exactly like hers.

  9. I will check with Claire, it was definately a hoop, because during their first dance, Darrell swung her around, and it retained the 'round' shape, lol. Claire will love all these wonderful comments :) Thanks everyone!


  10. Claire7:57 pm

    Thanks for all the lovely comments. My petticoat had 2 hoops and lots of net!!

  11. Anonymous7:14 am

    We're getting married next year and i've chosen the Victoriana dress in Ivory. I've tried finding photos on the internet because the Maggie Sottero ones don't do it justice. Have you got any photos of the back of your dress going up the aisle?

  12. Anonymous2:40 am

    I love your dress Claire! You and Darrell had the most beautiful wedding. The photography is excellent. I wish that I could hire your photographer for my wedding but unfortunately, I am an ex-pat living in the States.
    Best wishes for a wonderful life together.

  13. Claire3:53 pm

    There are many pics of the back of my dress - maybe Teri or David can post them on here!!!

  14. Anonymous12:21 pm

    omg that dress is so beautiful looks like a speciel day happened there congrags

  15. Anonymous10:17 pm

    OMG...I love everything!!! I love how cute the cake topper came out. Where did she get it from???

  16. Anonymous11:38 pm

    Both of you are great photographer, guys!
    BTW, thanks for visiting Our Blog

  17. Anonymous4:14 am

    a very beautiful wedding dress! i so love it!

  18. Anonymous2:48 am

    I'm getting the victoriana dress in light gold. Thanks for inspiring me to find the dress to see what it looked like on myself. I completly fell in love with the light gold one!

  19. Anonymous8:19 pm

    Simply stunning

  20. Anonymous3:31 pm

    I love this dress and was in awe when I found your picture wearing it after doing a goolge search on pink wedding gowns. I also love, love, love the bridesmaids dresses. Can you let me know who the designer is. Thank you!!

    1. I too would love to know who made the bridesmaids dresses

  21. I love everything about this wedding. It's so beautiful...!! I am wondering how you felt about not choosing the traditional white/ivory dress? I am debating on buying this dress because I adore it so much, but I also am wondering if my fiance won't be as blown away because it isn't a white dress. Any news on who made the bridesmaids dress too? Thank you so much!!


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