By Louise Baltruschat Hollis
WWW readers Hannah and Rebecca tied the knot on the 4th October 2014 at the stunning Devonshire Terrace in London. They wanted a personal wedding which ended up with a lovely mismatch feel. Music was a big priority for Hannah and Rebecca, with live music and meaningful song choices alongside fun band table names.
They looked so very beautiful in their lace gowns and natural make up looks and I so love the pretty wild style blooms. Gorgeous.
Thanks today to goes to the amazing Paul Joseph Photography for sharing these photographs with us.
THE PROPOSAL | On a hot July day in 2013 we spent the day celebrating Hannah’s birthday. After a cross country Segway session (the scariest moment of Becs’ life), we had our favourite Champagne in our garden and then ventured into London for steak at Hawksmoor. It was literally the most perfect day. After our meal Hannah kept insisting that we go for a walk along the embankment. Once we came to a nice, quiet spot, she proposed! We managed to enjoy the moment for all of 2 minutes before being surrounded by a group of Russian students!
THE VISION | The ‘vision for the day’ changed frequently! Eventually we ended up with a mismatch of themes that we both loved and made the day much more ‘us’. We wanted to make something personal in an impersonal city. We emphasised our love for music throughout with a festival feel, live musicians and a carefully selected playlist. We even had Arctic Monkeys lyrics as a reading! We’re not wine connoisseurs but do love a good cocktail so we wanted mojitos to make an appearance. The entire day achieved exactly what we truly wanted; amazing food, a great party and everybody having a fantastic day.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | For two of the most unorganised, laid back people, our planning went pretty well! I think what helped was finding the venue pretty early on and having Nina as our wedding co-ordinator! Hannah is also a master of spreadsheets which kept us on track with our budget. Ultimately, we were just very lucky with our suppliers who just made everything so easy for us.
THE VENUE | We wanted to get married in London because this is where we met and live. However, neither of us is originally from London, so we wanted something that you wouldn’t expect to find in the city. Devonshire Terrace was the first and last place we considered. Even though Devonshire Terrace is in the City, it is hiding down some back streets, secluding it from the hustle and bustle. The building is a converted factory with a courtyard and heated terrace covered by high glass roof and an indoor restaurant area.
Our ceremony and drinks reception were held in the courtyard full of natural light and greenery. This felt like we had the outside inside, which was perfect as we weren’t so lucky with the weather. Our wedding breakfast and evening reception were inside the restaurant. Having everything under one roof really made things convenient for us and our guests.
Nina – the wedding co-ordinator at the venue – was just fantastic. We met up with her a few times before and we knew our wedding was in safe hands. She was there from start to finish. The staff at the venue was great and the day ran so smoothly.
It was important for us to have menu choices for our guests and Devonshire Terrace provided this. The food was amazing. We’ve had so many compliments about it. My favourite part was… all of it!
THE DRESSES & ACCESSORIES | We decided not to show each other our dresses until we saw each other on the day. As we met just outside the venue with our Dads, we realised the dresses were the same material/colour and complimented each other perfectly! Hannah’s dress was by Augusta Jones and mine was Mori Lee. Both were ivory and lace.
My hair and make-up was completed by a young star – Francesca Perren. I’m a girl who knows nothing about the latest hairstyles and make up trends, but Francesca understood exactly what I was trying to describe when I meant ‘the natural look’. I had my hair down with loose curls and very neutral make up that lasted all day and survived the rain. My favourite part was how amazing my eyes looked!
Hannah booked Samantha (Sam) Norman to do her hair and make-up for the day. Like me, Hannah isn’t really into all of that girly stuff but Sam really got the look that Hannah was after and executed it perfectly. Her hair was up and to the side with loose plaits, it looked amazing. More amazingly, her hair and natural make-up remained in place all day after all the rain and air guitar! Sam also did a great job keeping Hannah cool and calm in the lead up to journey to the venue.
FINDING THE DRESS | We both bought our dresses from boutique stores near/in our home towns. Hannah had a ‘this is the perfect dress’ moment, whilst I had something slightly different in mind. Originally, I was going to shorten the length of mine and convert it into a tea dress. However, during my fitting I opted against that idea when I realised that I had actually fallen in love with the original!
THE READINGS & MUSIC | There are so many beautiful and inspiring readings out there – although many of these weren’t appropriate for a same-sex wedding. We also didn’t want to simply pick one from a book that we had never read. We share an enjoyment of music so decided it was more fitting that we had something that we would hear again. We chose verses from Passenger – The one you love and Arctic Monkeys – I wanna be yours (originally a poem by John Cooper Clarke). These were read by two of our close friends.
We desperately wanted an acoustic set during the ceremony and drinks reception. After lots of google searches and watching many, many YouTube videos we came across an artist called Lawrence Taylor. He is massively talented and was happy for us to create a custom acoustic set list with songs from various decades. He played as guests arrived and during the drinks reception. As we signed the register he sang Sam Smith – Latch, it was beautiful.
We had a live covers band called Beer Pressure at our evening reception. They were outstanding. The dancefloor was packed at all times. They really got the party started! We’re even going to see them again in Camden!
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | Our wedding was symmetrical – Hannah had three bridesmaids and so did I. Hannah had two ushers and so did I. One of my friends did a reading and so did one of Hannah’s friends. Choosing bridesmaids dresses was almost an impossible task. In the end we chose neutral colours and left the girls to find their own dress. The mismatched look worked out great. The dresses were a mix of department store and internet finds.
THE FLOWERS | Our flowers were done by The Flower Bird. We came across Sarah at a vintage wedding fayre in Hackney. We loved the style of the flowers she had on display and when we spoke to her she was extremely knowledgeable. We knew right then that she was perfect to take us on as we had no clue when it came to flowers! We just knew we wanted a ‘wild flower’ type look. After an early morning trip to the New Covent Garden flower market she knew exactly the type of things we liked and then she worked her magic. The result exceeded our expectations!
THE CAKE | The cake was the most perfect surprise. Hannah’s friends, and bridesmaids, Lisa and Alex kindly offered to make our wedding cake. We had planned everything else about the wedding so we liked the idea that the wedding cake would be a surprise for us. We gave them an idea of the things we liked and then it was completely over to them – the result was totally awesome! We loved it, and all the different layers tasted amazing!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Our photographers were Paul and Kelly from Paul Joseph Photography. Another photographer recommended these guys and we fell in love their photos immediately after we had seen their portfolio. Shortly after our meet and greet skype call we confirmed we wanted them for the job.
Prior to the day we met up for our ‘love shoot’, this involved us wandering around the back streets of Holborn with this creative pair. This was not something we were initially looking forward to as we are not used to being photographed. However, we instantly got along with them both which made the experience so much more enjoyable.
When it came to the big day, Paul and Kelly captured so many moments that we didn’t even see until browsing our photo album! We spent some time with them both and wandered around Shoreditch looking for unconventional, quirky backdrops. They succeeded in delivering exactly what we had envisioned our wedding photos to be.
We could not have asked for more. They were perfect.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We kept the décor quite simple as the beauty of the venue was enough! We dressed the tables with tree slices, various jars filled with wild flowers and tea lights. We also had bunting and balloons with confetti inside around the courtyard where we had our ceremony.
Our table names were bands that we have seen together (with the exception of Fleetwood Mac who we’re seeing this year!); we had black and white photographs of the bands on each table. Hannah’s clever uncle drew up the table plan.
For our invitations we used an Etsy supplier in the USA, this made making them ourselves really easy. She sent us the PDF and we used printed.com to print. This worked out far cheaper in the end.
THE HONEYMOON | Two days after our wedding we had a short trip to Seville, mainly to relax together, drink beer, and enjoy tapas. Our actual honeymoon is yet to come… in April we will be hitting the roads in California and Nevada as part of our 3 week road trip. Highlights will be San Diego, LA (including a LA Dodgers vs. San Francisco Giants baseball game), Las Vegas (including the celebration of Lisa’s big birthday), Grand Canyon, Death Valley, Yosemite, Napa Valley, San Francisco, and the Big Sur.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | This is very hard as there are so many! We have tried our best to limit this to just a few… Of course, one of our most memorable moments was seeing each other for the first time. This was shared with very few people as we met with the registrar just before the ceremony. Having some time together before going down the aisle helped to relax any nerves either of us had.
After the ceremony and the group photos, we headed off with Paul and Kelly to get some more interesting shots of just us in the surrounding streets. To receive the kind well wishes we did from complete strangers was amazing – these people wouldn’t have even made eye contact on any other day!
As part of the wedding breakfast we had many, many speeches. We both had things we wanted to say to those involved in the day and to each other. Our Dads both chipped in, and our bridesmaids too. We had lots of laughs and managed to keep the tears under control.
Everyone rocking it out on the dancefloor and then finally… us trying to get a taxi on Bishopsgate at 2:30am in our wedding dresses, holding our wedding cake!
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Do what you want to do. Listen to everyone around you and the advice they give you, but essentially it is your day so make it look and feel the way you want it to. If you don’t do things in line with the time-scales given in all those wedding magazines it is not a big deal. You can still do the things you want to do, but they may just take a bit more effort or cost a bit more money! At least then you have a wedding day that is all you both and you’ll have the best memories seeing everyone else enjoy it just as much as you.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Venue | Devonshire Terrace
Acoustic Musician | Lawrence Taylor – Sternberg Clarke
Band | Beer Pressure
Flowers | The Flower Bird
Cake | Kish-che– [email protected]
Photographers | Paul Joseph Photography
Rebecca’s hair & make up | Franesca Perren
Rebecca’s dress | Mori Lee
Hannah’s hair & make up | Sam Norman
Hannah’s dress | Augusta Jones
Thanks so much to Hannah and Rebecca for sharing their wonderful wedding day with us xo Lou
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