When it comes to weddings, I do absolutely love a laid back affair and this London celebration fits the bill perfectly. WWW readers Clare and Mark tied the knot at Brockewell Lido Café on the 13th April 2017. Having a very young son, they didn’t want too much fuss. Without going overboard with the details, our lovely couple put together an absolutely beautiful day with style in spades.
The Lido Café is a gorgeous venue in itself and I just love the paper pom poms that the pair adorned the space with for both the ceremony and the reception. With pictures of themselves and dearest ones all around, this really is a big day filled with love. The watercolour and modern calligraphy table names and the bright colours lent a slight tropical vibe to the day, which matches brilliantly with the lido palms and the terrace, which could be somewhere much warmer!
Clare found the perfect dress in Charlie Brear and Mark looks ever so dapper in his outfit from Edit Suits. I just love the flower girl’s gypsophila crown, she looks absolutely adorable and how special that their son was able to walk down the aisle on the day!
Sit back and enjoy this day bursting with love, captured just brilliantly by Kate Gray Photography.
THE PROPOSAL | Mark proposed to me after 10 months of dating. It was the most beautiful (and shambolic!) proposal – we had just put our christmas tree up and I was busy wrapping presents when Mark dashed out of the room shouting ‘I’m doing it!’. I knew something was going on by the way Mark was acting, but as soon as I heard The Ramones ‘Baby I Love You’ I knew! Mark blindfolded me and threw rose petals on me, and when I took the blindfold off he was down on one knee holding cards (inspired by my favourite film Love Actually!). There were a lot of tears and Mark presented me with a beautiful ring that I ended up batting across the room – it was shambolic but very us! The next morning Mark whisked me away on a surprise minibreak to Bruges – it was a lovely way to bask in our newly-engaged bliss!
THE VISION | We actually planned two weddings – we had a big, festival inspired tipee wedding all arranged, when I found out I was pregnant! We decided to postpone the wedding until after our son was born, and it was the best decision we could have made. We soon realised that whilst getting married was really important to us, we wanted something much more low key and to represent us now, whilst maintaining the big party and celebratory feel of our ‘first wedding’. We decided to keep our wedding local to us (mainly for ease of planning with a new baby!) and as the venue was 5 doors down (and where we celebrated our first Valentine’s day!) The Lido Cafe seemed the obvious choice!
THE PLANNING PROCESS |Planning a wedding with a newborn wasn’t always the easiest, but we decided very early on that we wanted a really relaxed, chilled out vibe to our day, and the only way to get that was if we had approached it as such – it was always just about the two of us, celebrating with our nearest and dearest. We decided to get married in South London, and wanted to (where possible) keep our suppliers local. Mark and I wanted to create a really joyous, celebratory day – and I’m so happy we enjoyed the run up to our wedding!
THE VENUE |Brockwell Lido Cafe, Herne Hill. The Lido Cafe was an easy choice for us – as soon as we decided to move our wedding to London, it was the only place we considered. We loved the poolside venue, with the tropical feel on a sunny day – exactly what we wanted for our relaxed, informal wedding. The fact the Lido was licenced was a bonus, we loved that we could keep everything in one place, and have our photographs taken by the pool and in Brockwell Park. We’ve lived together in the area for almost 3 years, so getting married in our neighbourhood felt really magical and special.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | it sounds like such a cliche, but as soon as I tried on my Charlie Brear gown in the gorgeous Frou Frou Bridal I knew it was ‘the one’! After trying on (and loving!) everything in the boutique I settled on the Harwood gown, with the delicate chantilly lace overdress. I felt amazing in it and i knew it was something I could feel comfortable and relaxed in all day – and enjoy tearing up the dancefloor in! It was romantic and relaxed but suitably bridal and really suited the venue. I had a Stuart Parvin calf length veil, but kept my accessories to a minimum – I wanted the dress to do the talking.
FINDING THE DRESS | I tried on lots of dresses with the help of my very patient bridesmaids! I started dress shopping 6 months after having my baby, so it was a bit of a nerve wracking time! I originally thought i wanted something fuller, but after trying on every shape and size dress, i soon realised that the A Line flat pleated front of the Charlie Brear dress really flattered my shape.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Mark wore a navy 3 piece tailored suit from Edit Suits. We were really impressed by the service and quality. Mark got exactly what he was looking for (and in budget!)
THE READINGS & MUSIC | As we we were having a civil ceremony, we didn’t want our service to feel rushed or impersonal. We wanted the service to set the tone for the day, and CK Gospel did just that! We had a 5-piece Gospel Choir singing ‘You’re All I Need To Get By’ as I walked down the aisle – it was a really beautiful and uplifting way of kicking off the proceedings!. The choir performed some of our favourite songs during the ceremony ‘All You Need is Love’ by The Beatles, ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered’ by Stevie Wonder, ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough’ by Marvin Gaye and ‘Happy ‘ by Pharrel Williams. Our guests loved them, and they were definitely one of the best things we spent money on. My best friend Lizzy read an extract from The Velveteen Rabbit and Mark’s mum read ‘Love’ by Roy Croft. Probably my favourite part of the ceremony was when my son (and chief ring bearer!) toddled down the aisle with our ring boxes – a moment I’ll treasure forever and I’m so glad our son was part of our wedding day!
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 4 bridesmaids – my sister, cousin and two of my oldest school friends. The girls wore dresses from David’s Bridal in ‘Apple’ red. My bridesmaids are all different shapes and sizes and I wanted them all to feel comfortable and gorgeous in their dresses, so we opted for different necklines to suit their shapes. The overall look was fabulous and the red was bright without being gaudy – they all looked so glamourous!
THE FLOWERS | Elaine our local florist always has a good idea of what I like, so I trusted her implicitly when it came to my bouquet and flowers for the venue. We were pretty open with our brief – we just wanted gorgeous blooms that were in season, and she picked out beautiful peaches, pinks and creams that suited my dress perfectly. She created a stunning flower arch around the glass doors where we said our vows – I was thrilled with the overall look and it was great having someone so local who I still buy flowers from every week!
THE CAKE | We are lucky enough to have a friend who runs a bakery (Copleston Bakery) so she was the obvious person to commission our wedding cake! Nadia created a beautiful 3 tiered semi-naked cake with carrot, chocolate and vanilla sponge. Nadia decorated the cake with fresh flowers, and our gorgeous ‘Yay’ cake topper (from Not on The High Street).
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Kate Gray Photography was an amazing choice and I would highly recommend them. Kate and her husband Jon were a delight to have with us on our wedding day, and were everything you would want from wedding photographers – they were discreet but managed to get all the important shots that we needed! We loved their informal, naturalistic contemporary style, and we are thrilled with all of the photos. They really captured the essence of the day – it’s so wonderful to look back and see all of our friends enjoying the day as much as we did!
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR |The Lido Cafe needs very little decoration – it’s a bright, airy space, with gorgeous views of the pool and the palm trees on the terrace. We decided to just decorate with some bright coloured pom poms, lots of wild flowers and some family pictures to personalise the space. We didn’t really have any particular theme or colour scheme – we wanted to have a grown up wedding but with lots of colour and vibrancy. We were so lucky that we had a beautiful sunny spring day, watching our guests mingle on the terrace by the pool made us feel like we were on holiday!
THE HONEYMOON | As new parents, we didn’t want to leave our little boy for long! We decided on a mini-moon to Bath, where Mark and I enjoyed a few gorgeous nights as newlyweds with lots of lovely spa treatments!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | I’ll never forget hearing the Gospel Choir start performing ‘You’re All I Need To Get By’ – it was so amazing walking in and seeing all of our friends and family! It sounds such a cliche but all day we really felt the love and happiness from our guests, and we were grinning from ear to ear all day. My son toddling down the aisle with our rings was so magical – I never imagined the day could be more perfect.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Having a 1 year old puts things in perspective! Always remember what the day is about – the two of you! I’m really pleased that our day was so relaxed and that we didn’t get stressed out in the run up – it really doesn’t need to be stressful. Focus on what is important to you – we wanted to be surrounded by our closest friends and family, with good food, good wine and an amazing party. We overlooked additional extras to ensure we didn’t go over budget but still gave our guests a brilliant time.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | Kate Gray Photography
Dress | Charlie Brear
Veil | Stuart Parvin
Shoes | Rainbow
Alterations | Miss Kaye Seamstress
Bridal Boutique | Frou Frou Bridal
Hair & Make Up | Tracey Baden
Bridesmaids Dresses | David’s Bridal
Cake | Copleston Bakery
Venue | The Lido Cafe
Flowers | The Flower Lady
Music | CK Gospel
Groom’s Suit | Edit Suits
Thank you so much Clare and Mark for sharing your love filled day with us. Rachel x