Yippee it’s Friday and the weekend is in sight. I have one last wedding to share with you before the week is out and it is a beauty.
Lucy looked super beautiful in Naomi Neoh with Paradox shoes and a chic up do. Karl donned a dapper Hugo Boss suit and shoes with a red tie. There were the sweetest flower girls who wore colourful converse and sweet flower crowns.
I love the industrial feel of their wedding reception which was filled with colourful touches. Perfect.
Thanks so much to the wonderful Matthew Long for sharing his images with us today.
The Proposal… When Karl and I got together I was in my first year of 4 years of full time study and Karl had secretly planned for some time to propose on the day after I had finished. For one of our first dates we had gone down to the sea wall in the old town where we live for drinks and a platter of seafood which on the night of the proposal Karl had recreated at home with some bubbles before going out (we had pre planned a ‘freedom’ dinner to celebrate my finishing studying). I had no idea that he was about to propose, so much so that part of the way through Karl’s build up I suddenly realised that our chickens needed putting to bed and insisted that we went out to do it…. 10 minutes of chasing chickens round the garden later we were back inside where Karl popped the big question and we had a night of double celebration! He proposed with a stunning ring he’d designed himself and was made by a very good old school friend of mine which made it all the more special. When I saw the ring I knew that Karl knew me better than I could ever imagine as I couldn’t have designed anything I would have loved more, he got it completely right.
The Vision for the Day… Both of us were agreed from the start that we wanted many of the traditional elements of a wedding such as readings, a sit down dinner and a first dance but without the formalities or starched feeling that can often come with it. We wanted the day to be relaxed, be full of colour, great food, good music and dancing and knew if we got those things right then everything else would fit into place.
The Planning Process… We were very lucky that our planning process was pretty much stress free as we both shared the same vision and were very decisive with big decisions so it was easy to get all the main parts of the day sorted quickly. We gave ourselves 10 months to plan the day and can honestly say that we thoroughly enjoyed planning all of it. The thought of having all of our family and close friends in one place together was exciting. We are both very sociable outgoing people so we found planning a party of this scale great fun!
Budget… £20,000 (plus honeymoon). We were very fortunate to have help from Karl’s dad and step-mum and my parents which meant we were able to have everything that we wanted and not scrimp in any way (which is good because we were both terrible at keeping our budget down as we wanted to best of everything). Thankfully the type of wedding we wanted meant we didn’t have to pay any venue fees which saved us a huge amount.
The Venue… The ceremony took place in the council chamber in Islington Town Hall, followed by The Artisan of Clerkenwell both in London.
The Dress + Accessories… The dress was Naomi Neoh from the Bespoke Wardrobe. A French corded lace bodice with a silk corsage in blush pink. It had a full silk chiffon skirt infused with a subtle hint of blush pink. I wore a lace overly over the bodice during the day and after dinner removed it for more of an evening feel. My shoes came from the belle collection of Paradox London, a company set up by my dad many years ago. Although he had sold the business and retired several years ago I had imagined myself walking down the aisle in a pair of his wedding shoes for many years so it was a special moment for me to find a pair that I loved that matched my dress so well! Accessories were some very simple pale pink pearl earrings and a necklace which I wore as a bracelet during the day and a necklace in the evening.
Finding the Dress… This was one of the first things that I did! I went on a shopping trip with my mum just to get an idea of styles and prices etc. Mum was quite emotional at times as she didn’t think I would ever wear a traditional wedding dress. I had tried on around 6 dresses in a couple of shops but nothing really stood out until I went to the final shop. When I went to the bespoke wardrobe all the dresses were so beautiful I wanted to try them all on! I had gone to try on a particular dress and when I put it on I fell in love with it immediately. My mum and I were both in tears, a much stronger reaction than I had ever expected, particularly as I had always said I would never wear anything typically bridal. I still think my dress is the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.
Groom’s Attire… Karl wanted to wear a classic black suit and after trailing around looking for the perfect fit he found a Hugo Boss suit and shoes which fitted his vision perfectly.
The Readings + Music… There were two readings during the ceremony. One by my mum ‘Love me when I’m old ‘ by Bee Rawlinson, a tongue in cheek but romantic poem about growing old together and a story written by Karl’s (and Lucy’s) friend Pete Caprani about a young bear who sets off around the world in search of love, only to realise it was right there under his nose in an old friend… a familiar story!
Beautiful Bridesmaids… There were 3 young flower girls, Summer Karl’s daughter and Lucy’s nieces Poppy & Isla . The girls looked beautiful in simple cream dresses each with their own coloured sash and converse (Summer – bright pink, Poppy – emerald green, Isla – purple). The 3 best men also had ties/socks in each of those colours. There were two bridesmaids, two sisters Nancy & Jessie who are my closest friends, more like family than anything. They wore hot pink dresses from in one clothing and looked stunning.
The Flowers… Ruth at gingerlily flowers seemed to grasp my ideas for the flowers immediately. I wanted lots of bright colours in my bouquet to match all the colours of the day interspersed with big blousy peonies to soften the look and fit in with my dress so I went for pink ‘Sarah Bernhardt’ peonies, pink Piano roses, and brightly coloured deep purple, yellow narcissi, some reds, a little blue thistle and a touch of eucalyptus. The bridesmaids had longer stems in red and pink also using piano roses which matched my corsage and peonies and the clashing colours gave it a more modern feel. The flower girls had head dresses of flowers using tiny thistles, roses, lavender, pink waxflower and yellow narcissi.
The Cake… The cake was lovingly made by Keeley one of our best and cleverest friends! It was a 4 tiered Victoria sponge with raspberry and strawberry buttercream icing and raspberry jam. It looked amazing and tasted as good as it looked. We wanted something that people really wanted to indulge in and were lucky as it all went on the day.
Your Photographer… Our photographer Matthew Long was an absolutely brilliant find. We wanted somebody we felt completely comfortable with, whose pictures would capture the feeling of the day and all the little details we had at the venue. We felt completely at ease with him from day one, always laughing and joking which was so important to us as neither of us are used to being in front of the camera. Matt included an engagement shoot in the price so a few weeks before the wedding we were down at the beach for sunrise and spent two hours having pictures taken which really did prepare us for the wedding day and means we have loads more beautiful pictures than we’d ever expected. Nothing was ever too much trouble and the photos that we have are a stunning reminder of our day. We both look at the pictures a great deal, in fact they have made me well up on many occasions over the past few months! We decided to use a videographer as well as a photographer and Steve Soar who we used was a brilliant part of our day. Again we chose him not only for his amazing videography, but also because we immediately liked him as a person and felt we could be at ease with him. Not only did he create a beautiful video of all the best bits of our day, from getting ready to our first dance, he also created several short clips which I have watched over and over on my phone and also a brilliant clip of ourselves and guests from the wedding dancing to teenage wedding (pulp fiction) which is hilarious!!
The Details + Decor… We wanted lots of colour from the offset and chose The Artisan of Clerkenwell as it was a great backdrop for putting our decor into. The bar itself has lots of dark wood and metal piping giving both a traditional and industrial feel to it. We added to this with 120 large brightly coloured lanterns hanging from the ceiling on ribbons, creating a sea of colour. We also had large swathes of brightly coloured material hanging from the walls, pipes and banisters which Karl’s dad had kindly provided for us. This meant that everywhere you looked was colour against the wooden background.
The Honeymoon… One of our most treasured friends lives in the Bahamas with her husband and we were lucky enough to have them fly back for the wedding. We decided from the start that we wanted to fly back with them and spend part of our honeymoon with them. The four of us flew together and we stayed with them for a couple of days before heading to a small, beautiful resort with brightly coloured beach huts right on the Atlantic coast and then finally we flew to another island for a week of secluded paradise life, drinking cocktails, swimming and generally enjoying our first days as a married couple!
Advice for Other Couples… I don’t think we have any advice that stands out from what anyone else told us really. I think we both feel that the most important thing really is to enjoy every moment and to not get so swept up in the planning that you forget what the whole thing is about.
Credit Where Credit is Due…
Photographer: Matthew Long www.matthewlongphotography.co.uk
Preparation Venue: Town Hall Hotel
Ceremony: Islington Town Hall
Reception: The Artisan of Clerkenwell
Dress: Naomi Neoh
Shoes: Belle by Paradox
Hair: Alison at Hair
Make up: Helen Foster
Flowers: Gingerlily Flowers
Just beautiful. Thanks so very much to Lucy and Karl for sharing their wedding with us today :-) XOXO Lou