Joy-filled, Vibrant Cultural Fusion Wedding in Oxford: Oxford Wedding Photographer

As I’ve mentioned before, cultural fusion weddings are incredibly close to my heart. My personal journey is tightly knotted with a genuine love for diversity: I left my country because of it, I majored in foreign languages because of it, I lived in 3 other countries because of it and I married someone from a different cultural background because of it. Different cultures, different languages, different people, different beauties were always fascinating to me, because they were proof of other ways of living, of exciting stories and that my beliefs, lifestyle and ideas weren’t the only ones possible.

The Couple

With that in mind, I was over the moon when Nuam and Sam enquired about their wedding day, as from the very offset they mentioned that they loved the fact that I had a diverse portfolio. I knew immediately that they were going to be my kind of people! They were planning their own cultural fusion wedding and wanted an Oxford wedding photographer who’d capture not only what happened during the day, but its symbolism and importance too. I was so thrilled that they trusted me to do it!

Nuam and Sam’s cultural fusion wedding day really was a perfect celebration of both of their backgrounds and cultures. Nuam’s family is originally from Myanmar and, as she said in her speech, when they moved to the UK they probably didn’t imagine that their precious eldest daughter would marry a ginger British man from Reading! 

Fashion is one of the many ways you can celebrate your heritage in a cultural fusion wedding and Nuam wore a bespoke embroidered bridal dress with a wrap around skirt detail that did just this. (Want more tips on how to incorporate your heritage in a cultural fusion wedding, from an Oxford wedding photographer who specialises in them? Check my blog post out here.) Her family wore gorgeous traditional celebration clothes which burst with colour and joy, and the priest, a family friend, also wore a traditional Zomi outfit.

The Ceremony

Their ceremony was held in a Baptist church. It set the scene for the day, where many of the ‘traditional’ wedding rules would be broken and a new way in keeping with what Nuam and Sam wanted would be born. For example, both the mother of the groom and the father of the bride gave a speech in the church. Everyone was in great spirits, with tears and laughter in equal measure. It was also the scene of one of my favourite moments of the day: the whole Zomi community went up to the altar and, led by Nuam’s father, prayed for the couple. It was incredibly touching – and even more momentous if you consider that almost the entirety of the tiny Zomi community in the UK was present at the wedding! 

bride and groom standing at the altar in a church

The reception at St. Hilda's College

After the wedding, the happy couple and their guests walked from the church to the venue, St Hilda’s College. Whilst the guests acquainted themselves with the reception space, I peeled the newlyweds off for some couple portraits, which were SO much fun! 

One of the great things about being an Oxford wedding photographer is just how beautiful the city is, without even trying. As we strolled through the cobbled streets, I snapped Nuam and Sam in their just married joy, with the historic buildings and bridges as our backdrop. At one point, even the road too, soundtracked by honking horns from well-wishing motorists who went by! We also took some gorgeous portraits later on in front of the venue’s greenery. By then, the sun was just about to set, and Nuam had changed into her eveningwear, a beautiful strappy dress.

In the meantime, Nuam and Sam had made sure there was plenty for their guests to do at the reception. There were games spread out on the lawns and even the opportunity to go punting (another unique benefit of being an Oxford wedding photographer – capturing a bride in a rowboat!) A friend from uni, where they met, played the Kora, whilst everyone relaxed and enjoyed themselves under the hot sun. 

Inside the venue, a beautiful, grand room with wood panelled walls, each table was named after a painting, and decorated with bud vases full of bright dahlias. Here, it was not only time to celebrate, but to break some more traditions too. For example, during the meal, Nuam gave a really emotional speech, as well as her younger sister and Sam’s brother.

The party

After that, it was time for the final element of this dreamy cultural fusion wedding: the pub, of course! We all made our way to one nearby, and the guests danced and drank the night away. There was no cake-cutting, no first dance – just lots of delicious looking individual desserts, and an open dancefloor ready for everyone to make their move! 

Thank you so much to Nuam and Sam for trusting me with your wedding day – it was a real honour to be a part of. And if you’re looking for an Oxford wedding photographer to capture your cultural fusion wedding, I’d love to hear from you! 

Berni was amazing to work with - she was friendly, made us feel comfortable and at ease, and most importantly, was incredibly sensitive and understanding of our needs as a couple having a cross-cultural wedding. We wanted a photographer who had a keen eye for the important but unusual moments that come with having a cross-cultural wedding and Berni was able to capture those moments perfectly, without having to be told beforehand. On top of that, her talented artistic eye produced really amazing photos - we kept saying ‘oh wow’ to pretty much every picture we saw. I would whole-heartedly recommend her for anyone in need of a talented and approachable photographer.

Their dream team

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