WWW readers Lucy and Steven married in November 2013 at Islington Town Hall followed by a reception at Islington Metal Works in London. They envisioned a fun and and happy wedding day, which turned out to be a super colourful affair.
With the pretty maids in blue with colour pop shoes, bright beautiful bouquets of Ranunculus and multicoloured lanterns decorating the reception room.
Lucy looked gorgeous in her polka dot dress with blue petticoat and shoes, while Steven wore a blue Reiss suit which looked very dashing. There was fantastic lighting, special moments and a lot of love.
Thanks so much to the fabulous Kat Hill for sharing her images with us today.
The Proposal… Steve proposed on our four year anniversary at the Christmas market on the South bank in London. We had our first date there four years earlier during which we’d had mulled wine in little red mugs. We decided to go back to the market on our anniversary and re-create our date. Steve had planned everything, except for the weather – it was bucketing it down! Neither of us had umbrellas so we got soaked. Once the rain stopped Steve said he was going to get us some mulled wine. I was standing by the river (where we’d had our first, slightly nervous chat four years earlier!) and he came over with the two little mugs from our first date, and inside mine was an engagement ring (and no mulled wine!).
The Vision for the Day… We were determined to make our wedding fun! We wanted the day to be full of happiness, love and good will. I’m originally from Montreal in Canada, and I had 35 friends and family travelling across the Atlantic for the big day – we also had guests come from as far as Alaska and Tokyo! I knew how much effort our guests were already putting into coming to London for the wedding, so I wanted to make sure the day was as easy for them as possible. We were also keen not to get bogged down in traditions for the sake of traditions (which was harder than we thought it would be). We wanted the day to be about our love for each other and for our friends and family. And we wanted to make sure people laughed a lot :-)
The Planning Process… I am an organiser at heart and I began to build my epic wedding spreadsheet the day after we got engaged (sorry Steve!). From managing the budget, to short-listing venues – Excel was my friend for those ten months. I’m a bit of a worrier, so I knew that if I was as organised as possible, it meant that on the actual day I could just relax and let go, knowing that I’d done as much as I possibly could. I kept a little notebook on me at all times, where I jotted down every idea, reminder, or question that I had. I felt I had to be extra organised because of all our out-of-town guests who were coming to London, many for the first time. I created them all ‘welcome to London’ packs with tube maps, Oyster cards, bookmarks with contact numbers and addresses, as well as tips for things to do on their trip, and I sent it to them two months before the big day.
The Venue… We got married at the Islington Town Hall and had our reception at the Islington Metal Works. The Town Hall ended up being a really special venue for us, as we discovered (after we’d booked it) that my grandparents had gotten married by the Islington Town Hall registrar back in 1939 just after the war broke out.
Our reception venue was just brilliant. The Islington Metal Works is not your conventional wedding venue, but I promise you it’s a memorable one! The staff were so lovely and determined to make the day special for us (and very re-assuring whenever my worrying brain took over!). How many wedding venues have a London tube carriage as the bar? We had lanterns, fairy-lights, Parisian cafe tables, and lots of bright colours!
The Dress + Accessories… I found my dress when I was on holiday back in Canada and I went to Burlington, Vermont for the weekend. I wasn’t expecting to find my dress in Vermont, but I tried on a lovely 1950’s style polka-dot tea dress at David’s Bridal and just loved it. We were in the midst of a snowstorm, so we had to comedically run through the snow with the dress trying not to drop it or get it wet. The dress itself was a bit plain, so I found an amazing dressmaker here in London who made me a petticoat, a gorgeous sash, and a lovely little polka-dot jacket. I felt like I had a custom made dress, it was wonderful. I actually bought the blue shoes before I even found the dress – for reasons unbeknownst to me, I decided I really wanted to wear bright coloured shoes!
Groom’s Attire… Steve wore a gorgeous suit from Reiss – I loved the orange buttonhole against the air force blue suit. He had brown brogues and he spent a long time deciding what colour tie to get and finally decided on a bronze one :-)
The Readings + Music… My mum read ‘All I really need to know about life I learned in Kindergarden’ by Robert Fulghum, which was lovely and touching and then our friend Brendan read a poem that he’d written for us, which was just brilliant.
Steve and our friend Ben were in charge of the music for both the ceremony and the venue (at the Islington Metal Works the DJ booth is in the train conductors area of the tube carriage!). I walked down the aisle to ‘Here comes your man’ by the Pixies and we walked out to ‘You make my dreams come true’ by Hall and Oates. Our first dance was to ‘Don’t stop believing’ by Journey and it was my favourite moment of the day – we danced on our own for 90 (slightly mortifying) seconds, and then the entire room joined us and belted out the words. It doesn’t get much better than a whole room antheming to Journey!
Beautiful Bridesmaids… I went a bit North American with the bridesmaids and ended up having six! I had three Canadian bridesmaids, Erika, Alex and Serena, and three British bridesmaids, Jess, Isabelle and Calley. I gave them each a bit of money and asked them to pick out their own dress for the day – the only guidance was that it was navy blue and above the knees. It worked out perfectly – everyone bought dresses that they really liked, that suited their figures and that they will (hopefully) wear again. My friend Serena ended up buying three dresses as she couldn’t decide which one to wear, so we had a mini fashion show on the morning of the wedding :-) All six girls were wonderful – they read all my emails, planned two wonderful hen-do’s on each side of the Atlantic, and looked gorgeous on the day!
The Flowers… I loved our flowers! We asked our florist Catherine for lots of bright colours and she definitely met the brief. I lost my bouquet at some point during the evening which I was gutted about, but happy to have so many lovely photos showing off the flowers. The bridesmaids all wore different colour bright shoes and the ribbon on their bouquets matched their shoes :-)
The Cake… My good friend Beth (who also happens to be a fantastic baker!) made the cupcakes and cake for us. She’s amazing – she took two days off work and had a mini production line to make the 200 cupcakes and the little cake that sat on top. Her mixer died half-way through and she had to rush out and buy a new one! The cupcakes were gorgeous and matched our multi-coloured theme perfectly. Our friend Crystal made the little cake toppers for us out of clay. We live in Crystal Palace in London, so she’s got us standing in the park in front of the Crystal Palace transmitter.
Your Photographer… Our photographer Kat Hill was just wonderful. She was so calm, lovely and in control – even when there were a few stressful moments, she was calming me down! Everyone commented that they barely saw Kat (and her second shooter Cristina), yet they managed to capture almost every single moment! I couldn’t recommend Kat highly enough – she was a joy to work with and I just love our photos. I asked her to capture the joy from the day, and I think she did that and then some!
The Details + Décor… We had a lot of fun planning the little details and working with the Islington Metal Works on the décor. The Metal Works have a HUGE room that is full of props. It was like being a child in a candy shop in their props room! I also organised little things like getting a lovely woman called Jordan from Etsy to make paper dolls of Steve and I and the bridal party, as well as a great designer called Lucy who made our order of service and menu. My Mum put together the most amazing Pick n’Mix table (which was ten months in the making – I’d often get an excited phone call about a new candy that she sourced!). My friend Naomi made us a lovely guest book (on one of our crafts & wine evenings) and my sister spent many hours stamping all the luggage tag name cards. We had a Photo Booth which was a roaring success (especially with the little folk!). For dinner we had pie & mash which was a huge hit, and then as an evening snack we had the Canadian delicacy of ‘poutine’ (fries, cheese and gravy!).
The Honeymoon… We couldn’t afford to go on honeymoon right away, but we are hoping to go this Easter … to Iceland! We are really excited :-)
Memorable Moments… One of the most memorable moments from the day had to be when my Grandma arrived just in time to hear Steve and I get pronounced husband and wife. My Grandma and I were really close, we used to speak daily. She was 98 years old and had become poorly a few months before the wedding and we were worried she wouldn’t be strong enough to come. On our wedding day she got stuck in traffic and almost didn’t make it to the ceremony. Luckily she made it just in time, and we’d arranged for our registrar to present her with her wedding certificate from 1939, which was a really special moment. Sadly my grandma passed away six weeks after our wedding – I know she was determined to make it there that day, and I’m so honoured that she did.
Advice for Other Couples… My main advice for other couples is to remember that it’s your day and to make it the kind of day that you want, and not to feel pressure to please everyone (because, as I discovered, it’s just not possible!). On the day itself all the little things I was worrying and fretting about seemed to just fade away and all I could think about was how amazing it was that all the people we loved were together, not just in the same Country, but in the same room!
Also it’s really helpful to give your bridesmaids or ushers information about the different suppliers and a rough schedule of the day and what should be happening and when. We did this the day before the wedding and it meant that it wasn’t just Steve and I who could answer questions, and everyone (especially our MC Gavin) were just brilliant at making sure the day went smoothly and fixing any little issues that came up!
Credit Where Credit is Due…
Dress (top, petticoat, sash) | Catherine Shaw
Dress | David’s Bridal
Shoes | Human Premium
Makeup and Hair | Sabrina Lily
Photographer | Kat Hill
Wedding rings | Tine Bladbjerg
Cake | Beth (a friend of bride and groom’s)
Cake toppers | Crystal’s Clay Creations
Flowers | Catherine Rubaine
Photo Booth | Photo Emporium
Wedding reception | Islington Metal Works
Food | Octopus Food
Order of service | The Story House
Such a fun and colourful wedding day. I love it all :-)
Thanks so very much to Lucy and Steven for sharing their wedding with us here at WWW XOXO Lou