Mimi and Kim got married at San Francisco City Hall in January 2019 and booked their photography package with Zoe Larkin Photography just 2 days before their wedding!

Last minute bookings are rare, with most couples booking 2 – 3 months out. Many couples book their ceremony with City Hall the maximum 90 days out and their photographer soon after.

January is the quietest month of the year and I was available for their imminent City Hall wedding.

I couldn’t have been happier to photograph their intimate wedding, surrounded by so much love and laughter.

Their wedding was attended by very close family and chosen family only. Kim’s parents flew in from their home in Paris, France to attend their son’s wedding. Kim’s sister attended via Facetime!

Mimi wore a stunning white Ted Baker Polly structured bow dress and blue stilettos as her ‘something blue’. It really ‘popped’ against the pink hues of the Tennessee marble.

Fully present

Mimi emphasized how important it was for everyone to be fully present and really feel part of the afternoon’s proceedings, rather than snapping pictures.

I made sure I got lots of coverage of the group interacting in the corridor outside room 168 of San Francisco City Hall – the County Clerk’s office. With a group numbering more than 4 or 5, there are SO many opportunities for more candid photography, as people chat, laugh, hug and soon forget there’s a photographer there.

A common reaction I get is ‘wow, I couldn’t remember all those moments happening – even the ones I was part of!’ Though the waiting only lasted 15 minutes or so, there are so many little interactions to capture.

We are limited in our time at City Hall, as the process is very fast-moving and run pretty efficiently. They have a lot of couples to marry every single day.

I’m experienced in condensing the excitement, anticipation, joy, tears, elation and ALL THE FEELS into the course of just 2 or 3 hours, and I’ve shot dozens of weddings there. Each wedding celebration is unique. There’s a little of everything in your finished wedding gallery!

Mimi and Kim are looking forward to getting married in south of France! It made sense to do a City Hall wedding before that event so that the legal side of things is taken care of at home before their international wedding.

Congratulations, Mimi & Kim!

Practical and fun!

I find it’s fairly common for couples to marry at City Hall for very good and practical reasons – green card, buying a house, saving money at tax time, eloping at City Hall, or ahead of a destination wedding abroad. I am totally in favor of marrying for practical (as well as romantic!) reasons!

I myself had the simplest, fuss-free City Hall wedding a day or two after my arrival in the states with my K1 fiance visa, with a view to obtaining my green card so I could be with my love.

I list on vendor directory A Practical Wedding, which is a great resource for couples hoping to keep their wedding down-to-earth, messy, accessible and practical. Weddings can get a little crazy, and there’s something about City Hall weddings that calms my soul and reminds me this world hasn’t gone totally mad.

City Hall weddings are basically the antidote to the wedding-industrial complex. Fun, simple, joyful and beautiful.


Looking for an experienced City Hall photographer than will not only photograph your wedding but help you plan it and guide you though timelines, locations and the whole process? Or that’s sometimes available at the last minute?!

I’ll give you the full lowdown! Plus, I’ll be there on the day to make sure we stay on schedule so you get the most out of your photography experience and can enjoy the rest of your wedding day together, whether it’s just you, the whole family or just pals!

Get in touch to receive my free informative pricing guide – plus there are plenty more resources available at the bottom of this blog post!

Vendor love // 

Dress Ted Baker (Polly structured bow dress)

preparing for San Francisco City Hall wedding before the ceremony getting ready for City Hall wedding outside room 168 checking in to San Francisco City Hall wedding room 168 clerk's office rotunda wedding with vietnamese american family San Francisco City Hall family wedding photos 3rd floor grand staircase epic photos San Francisco City Hall wedding wedding details at San Francisco City Hall wedding flowers, blue shoes, rings intimate couples photos at San Francisco City Hall wedding vietnamese couple sweet and fun San Francisco City Hall wedding photography collage of vietnamese american couple on 4th floor of San Francisco City Hall at wedding individual photos of bride and groom on 4th floor San Francisco City Hall wedding grand staircase San Francisco City Hall intimate wedding portrait newlywed portraits on the steps of city hall outside iconic doorway

Want more information?

Comprehensive frequently updated info from SF City Hall

Specific wedding-focused City Hall info from their dedicated event website

How do we get married at City Hall? Your complete guide to the process by Zoe Larkin

10 City Hall Tips You Won’t Hear Anywhere Else by Zoe Larkin

All the City Hall wedding blog posts! by Zoe Larkin

Request Zoe’s info & pricing guide for San Francisco City Hall wedding photography


san francisco city hall wedding photographer

Zoe Larkin is a San Francisco-based wedding photographer & fine art graduate originally from London. She specializes in photographing intimate weddings for joyful, free-thinking couples. Zoe creates raw, personal images that evoke a range of emotions, combining documentary photography with a stylized edge. Her work has been published on Offbeat Bride, Equally Wed, Catalyst Wed Co, Love Inc Mag among others. She adores simplicity, kindness & Earl Grey. Zoe is an equality-minded vendor that celebrates diversity in all its forms. She is passionate about SF City Hall weddings, having had one herself! Read more about Zoe here


Mimi + Kim | City Hall rotunda wedding with close family

previous clients

June 18, 2019


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