Melbourne city has some truly stunning back drops for wedding photography. Old buildings, cute lane ways, and great architecture all give you the elements for brilliant photography. It’s one day in a bride’s life where she becomes the princess and focus of attention. Someone who sees the world differently, can give you a piece of precious time to last a lifetime.

Image by James Harvie Photography


Ms Gingham says: I love, love, love this photo. Thanks to James for sharing his inspiration and in turn inspiring us!

James says: “What I specifically like about wedding photography in Melbourne is the character of the city. The Docklands offers dynamic images and we love to use the curves and lines in our images that the many bridges of Melbourne portray. The cute laneways lend themselves to black and white contrasty images which really gives Melbourne wedding photography that artistic edge.”

Polka Dot Bride Shop

Claddagh Two Tone Wedding Band

Celtic wedding rings or Irish Claddagh rings are becoming an increasingly popular choice among couples today, but this style of ring has probably more significance and history attached to it than any other design. The style of the Celtic wedding ring closely resembles a type of ring dating back to Roman times which were called ‘fede’ rings, from the Italian phrase ‘mani in fede’ which means hands joined in faith or loyalty. These rings were used as love and wedding rings during Renaissance and Medieval Europe with the symbol of the clasped hands depicting the pledging of vows.

The Irish version, the Claddagh is more than three hundred years old and was named after a small fishing village. The word itself means ‘a flat stony shore‘ and there are two stories relating to the origin of the ring. The first tells of an Irish woman named Margaret Joyce who inherited a fortune from her late Spanish husband Domingo de Rona who had been a merchant trading with Galway. Subsequently, she married the Mayor of Galway, Oliver Og French in 1556 and put her fortune to practical use by constructing bridges in Connacht. As a reward an eagle is supposed to have dropped the first Claddagh ring into her lap.

The other story tells of a man coincidentally with the same surname, Richard Joyce. He was also from Galway and was captured by Algerians, sold as a slave and became the property of a Moorish goldsmith. In 1689 King William III of England secured the release of all British nationals and Joyce was released. He was evidently well thought of, because the Moor offered Joyce his daughter’s hand in marriage and a substantial part of his wealth if he would stay in Algiers. It is told that Joyce refused and returned to Galway with the first Irish wedding ring, the Claddagh.

Other styles of Celtic wedding rings are influenced by symbols such as the Celtic trinity knot, this depicts the Christian faith by meaning the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. These designs had been included by the church from the earlier Celtic religions. There are also woven knots which are intertwined, depicting eternity, which is particularly suitable for a wedding ring.

Diamond Celtic Knot Wedding Ring

Modern Celtic wedding rings can be made of several different precious metals such as yellow gold, white gold, rose gold, titanium, platinum and silver. It is an attractive option to combine two different color metals in the design of the ring, for instance the outer bands in yellow gold and the inner twisted design contrasted in white gold.

Open Weave Infinity Band

There are two popular choices for Celtic knot rings, open weave and closed weave. The difference is that the open weave center has no backing to the ring, but the closed weave has the knot design set onto a solid band. There will be several different styles within these choices. Before buying your rings it is a good idea to find out the pros and cons of each precious metal, this way you can be sure of making an informed choice.

All images from Celtic Wedding Rings

Ms Gingham says: I have real envy for the Diamond Knot Wedding Ring. Absolutely gorgeous. Thanks to Catherine for this interesting article on the history of this stunning jewellery.

Catherine says: “I have worked with Celtic Rings Ltd for over 6 years contributing articles on jewellery and Celtic history.”

Photo courtesy of Joseph Toris

Who says you can only place one-time-use cameras on the guest tables? As much as guests — especially the kids — love using them during the reception … and get some great shots … there are a few new ways that brides and grooms are offering those pretty one-time-use cameras.

  1. Set them out by the guest book so that everyone can take fun photos as they arrive, as they’re signing in, in groups with people they won’t be sitting with.
  2. Display them in out-of-town guests’ hotel rooms with a snack display, as an alternative to the guest welcome bag. They can start taking photos earlier in the weekend, such as at the welcome cocktail party.
  3. Set them on the cocktail party tables, so — again — guests can capture the pre-reception action and their not-sitting-together groups.
  4. Place one or two on the bar so that groups who are doing a group shot or toasts can snap that photo for you.
  5. Place them in a display near the dessert bar, so that guests can snap photos of those beautiful treats, petit fours, mini pastries, chocolate-covered strawberries and more.
  6. Set them out at pre-wedding parties, such as the engagement party, for guests to capture fabulous images.
  7. If cameras still have shots left on them after the reception, bring them to the after-party or set them out at the morning-after breakfast to get even more festive photos at those events.
  8. Make them the prizes at the bridal shower. Guests love unique prize items — candles are too cliche, say many shower guests and hosts — and a cute, colorful camera lets the winner use it however she wishes.
  9. Use leftover cameras or shots at gatherings you attend when you come home from the honeymoon, such as your first dinner with your parents, or at a thank-you lunch with bridesmaids.
  10. And of course, use waterproof one-time-use cameras during your honeymoon to capture fun photos while snorkeling, swimming or just lounging on the beach.

I also love to mix up the colors, such as putting some purple on tables, and some ivory, for a stylized color blend and an unexpected look.

Swirl divider7 A Natural Wonderland: Caneel Bay, St. John, US Virgin Islands

Ms Gingham says: Time for the humble disposable camera to make a reappearance. Great tips. Thanks to Sharon for sharing her Wisdom with us today!

About Sharon: Sharon Naylor is the author of over 35 wedding books, including her newest: “Bridesmaid on a Budget”, “Smart Guide to Wedding Weekends”, and “1001 Ways to Save Money and Still have a Dazzling Wedding”. Her two books for the mothers of the bride and groom are bestsellers, and she has appeared on such top shows as Good Morning America, ABC News, Lifetime, Inside Edition and more – sharing tips and insider secrets to help you plan your dream wedding on a budget, personalized to your love story. Visit her site Sharon Naylor for more on her books, free worksheets and appearances. She lives in Morristown, NJ with her husband Joe and is at work on her next two wedding books.