Introducing Nina & Mark…
For some reason it’s taken me a little while to get round to creating a full blog post for Nina & Mark’s wedding back at the end of February. I think it may be down to it having being a Ukrainian wedding and there are SO many ace details that it’s hard to choose the images the tell the story in a concise way. The last time I shot a “Ukey” wedding the supporting blog (for Sonya & James’ wedding – post here) was the longest and most image intensive blog I think I’ve ever written. Knowing this one was also gonna be a big mamma, I wanted to do it justice, so here it is… [I hope you’re sitting comfortably]
We kicked off the day with Nina at her home…
I’d met these two characters on the pre-wed a while back [post here]!
and these characterful additions were new to me, and right up my street. I do like a bride with a penchant for a pair with personality.
Here’s Nina getting tied up.
A moment between pals…
…and a catch of Dad caught in a moment of his own. It’s lovely seeing a father looking at his little girl, all grown up.
He wasn’t guaranteed to attend, as he had to travel back from where he lives in Brazil, but his attendance was obviously so special for Nina
Over with the chaps, Clare caught Mark’s preps.
It’s traditional at Ukrainian weddings for the parents to give their blessing in the morning.
Back at Nina’s her bridesmaid fitted the veil…
…and pinned in a lucky safety pin (another Ukey tradition)
Nina’s blessing was given by her parents and Bapcha (Grandma).
A moment of celebration, just before a round of Vodkas!
The girls, looking elated before heading off to church…
…and the cat, looking a touch less amused by our departure!
More: “Erm, where do you think you’re going?!”
Nina told me she was a self-confessed “Tesco Pervert”!
So as we were running a tad early, Nina decided we should pop in for a snap I doubt I’ll ever take again!
Over at Bradford’s Ukrainian Catholic Church Clare caught a few details. Last time we were here it was raining, and it looked stunning in the sun.
The chaps milled & welcomed guests outside
When Nina arrived, they were just getting final guests inside, so they had a nosey through the hedge.
It’s tradition for the bride and groom to meet each other and the priest outside the church to ask if they’re free to marry.
Then they walk down together and the ceremony is given (& sometimes sung) by the priest in Ukrainian. I’m lovin’ the wreath action.
A detail I rather liked.
Outside the church Nina & Marks friends & family threw a bit of confetti.
A quick shoot in the park down the road from the church
I like this cheeky catch of them strolling back to the car…
…for a Guinness each!
Because my blogs can get a tad epic in length, I’ll add in a break here to give your internet a break! Click ‘more’ below for the 2nd half.
In the evening sun at the Ukrainian Club, we snapped the groupshots, including the ladies…
the guys, and Simba, who was obviously a little overjoyed to see Mark dressed all dapper.
A few details of the room before guests filled it.
Another ace tradition at Ukrainian weddings is the entrance to the wedding breakfast, where the bride & groom were welcomed in and take a shot of vodka with their parents. It’s good luck for the bride & groom to only have a sip & to throw it over their shoulder, and the non-Ukrainian members in the wedding party are generally kept in the dark, and therefore on the receiving end!
The couple then walk under the traditional Ukrainian bread, have a glass of wine & are led to the top table tied together
They then have to kiss every time a guest dings their glass, to save the wine from turning sour.
This happens more than once, let me tell you.
Mark sporting a cheeky expression during his speech.
Nina rocks. I like a bride who gives a speech.
The Ukey equivalent of a line-up is to do a shot with the bride & groom at the head table! I believe it’s called “Peri-pee”, but don’t spellcheck that!
A silly number of shots are done and it’s impressive that the couple don’t end the evening on dialysis at A&E
That’s Sonya & James on the left, who I joined for a simliar experience last year. We left their wedding wishing we were Ukrainian.
Mainly because the dancing was so much fun…
…this bride & groom have been ‘Ukey dancing’ since they were about 4 years old.
With the free bar flowing, and a shot or two in everyone, the bride has her veil swapped for a Ukranian gypsy headscarf, to portray daily life and rituals.
Then the bride has a dance with all the bridesmaids wearing her veil.
After that they arranged for Mark’s Ukey dance troop to put on a show of awesome Ukey dancing.
These guys do some crazy moves.
Afterwards, they encouraged the guests to join in, including Mark doing a solo dance for Nina.
All ages were involved
And some serious tricks were on display.
I snapped their rings on their wedding breakfast menu, which detailed four basic instructions for the day:
EAT, DRINK, SING and DANCE.
It seemed all four were observed rather well!
nb: Nina & Mark have a private client area containing their wedding & pre-wedding highlights at www.barnabyaldrick.com. If you were at the wedding and would like to see more of their photos, drop them an email for the password.