Flowers Galore For An Elegant, Relaxed & Romantic Affair.
I’m not sure where to begin with Rachel and Alex’s super stylish affair. There are just so many beautiful details and the whole day just looks so elegant and well styled but still very relaxed.
The best place to start is probably with Rachel’s divine Catherine Deane gown. The boned bodice creates such a beautiful shape and I’ll forever love the delicate fall of silk-chiffon. The Bridesmaids dresses are so pretty too – the perfect shade of pinky nude to add some femininity to the day without being too girly.
I think we’ll move on to the flowers next – wonderfully oversized, rustic bouquets, single stems in quirky metallic and glass vases and then there’s that hanging flower box…
Not to mention the art deco style wooden table numbers, the rustic stationery in grey, duck egg blue and gold, the mirrored table plan, the dapper Groom and Groomsmen in navy…it’s all just so stylish.
Not only is the wedding easy on the eye, but the atmosphere looks incredible too, from the champagne popping moment during the ceremony, to the marquee filled with dancing bodies at the end of the evening, this is a truly special wedding.
Rachel the Bride:I actually found my dress by accident, half an hour after finding the bridesmaid dresses by accident! We were not deliberately wedding shopping, but thought we’d pop into Harvey Nichols and see what they had. There was one off-white full length dress, I tried it on and that was it. I hadn’t wanted a traditional bridal gown, I was looking for something a bit different, simple, and modern – this was the one. It was a pretty epic day.
My hair was done by Emma from Real Hairdressing, I’ve been to her for years and knew that she’d be wonderful. I also had a cathedral length veil from De Stafford Bridal in Dublin, it was very simple which was just what I wanted, the only downside was that I couldn’t wait to take it off…I loved the look but hated the fuss of wearing it!
I wore a silk scarf from Ted Baker for the evening, to add a little colour, and because whatever the weather, I inevitably get cold!
Choosing my jewellery was a highlight, I had worked with Katie from Keishi Jewellery in the past and knew that she would have the perfect items. My wedding band, earrings, and bracelets were all from her, and I just loved them, I couldn’t recommend her more.
Alex’s suit was from Reiss, they were extremely helpful, fitting the suit to Alex there and then. He went for a deep blue, with shirt and shoes and tie from Ted Baker. His cufflinks were a gift from me, a vintage pair from Etsy the week before the wedding. Such a handsome human!
Happily, the venue was the easiest decision in the process, my parents live in a beautiful house outside Nottingham, and the garden was the only place on our list. The biggest priority for Alex and I was to have a relaxed and laid back celebration, welcoming people into my family home was such a special way to achieve that hospitality. We wanted to honour the most important people in our lives with an excellent party. We hired a traditional marquee with none of the linings – it was more beautiful bare, and gave us a blank canvas to work from.
I was starting to build my career as a freelance designer as we were planning the wedding, and having full control of the whole look and feel of a day like this was a bit of a dream! I wanted the decor to set a classy, relaxed and romantic tone. I kept things very simple; white linens, mixed metal tones, lots of beautiful flowers, and festoon lighting. I designed and printed all of the paper goods, painted the blackboards, created the welcome bags for guests, styled the tables, and loved every second of it!
Rebecca from Floraldeco was beyond wonderful. The first time I met her I told her that the flowers were the most important aspect for us, and she didn’t buckle under the pressure! We had a wonderful time swapping images and inspiration back and forth, and settled on oversized, asymmetric flowers, with heaps of green, neutral colours, pops of aubergine, and plenty of texture.
One of the biggest undertakings of the day was the flower box that my Brother-in-Law hung for us from the roof of the tent – Rebecca did a stunning job filling this to the brim, it was a wonderful feature for the day.
It’s a tradition in my family to have an arch of flowers on your wedding day. My Mum put one together for me the day before, and it was really special to marry Alex standing in front of such tradition and love. Mum, my sisters, and I also did the flowers for the tables together the two nights before the wedding, another treasured memory.
My sister Natasha was my maid of honour, Becka, my Sister-in-Law was my bridesmaid, and they were ruddy epic. They looked stunning in their Ted Baker dresses. I let them choose their own dresses, and shoes (although I don’t think Becka wore any in the end!), and decide how they wanted their hair and make-up, I think people are always happier and more relaxed when they get to just be themselves.
Carys, my niece, was my flower girl, wearing a ridiculously cute dress from Monsoon – we got a matching one for her new baby sister, Mia, who was only five weeks old at the time!
The groomsmen wore their own suits, we just asked that they were in a shade of dark grey, their ties were a gift from Alex, the dusky blue version of his own grey tie from Ted Baker.
We had the wedding ceremony in the garden, it was so special and calm. We wanted it to be a reflection of us, our family, and God, and we honestly couldn’t have loved it any more. My cousin Daniel led the ceremony, with two more cousin’s, Andy and Emma, playing me down the aisle – Emma on my Grandparent’s piano, which eight men carried into the marquee the day before!
One of our most treasured decisions was asking our parents to lead the vows with us, Alex’s parents asking me if I would take him, and mine asking Alex the same. It was perfect, and a very special moment.
To stop my Dad from worrying all day about his speech, we had the fathers give their speeches just after we said ‘I do’. We placed buckets of champagne down the aisle, and champagne saucers on each chair, and instructed the guests on the aisle seats to pop the corks as Alex kissed the bride. We all had a glass, while ‘Whole of the Moon’ by The Waterboys played, and then we sat down for the Dad’s, frankly hilarious, speeches!
During the day we played a playlist Alex created the afternoon before the wedding, after dinner Ger Doyle and his band, The Colonials played us into the early hours. I couldn’t recommend them more, they really do know how to fill a dance floor!
The food! It was incredible, Fiona Herbert is a genius. Alex and I went to her with a pretty clear idea of what we wanted – a shared feast of delicious and fresh food. She knocked it out of the park. We had sharing platters of antipasti, meats barbecued to perfection, deep chocolate brownies and brûléed lemon tart. We got so many compliments about the food, it was a real celebration feast!
My Mum baked all of the cakes, accurately titled ‘Vandra’s absolutely epic delicious cakes’. Our wedding cake was a chocolate biscuit cake, iced by my Mum and I the day before, but she also made chocolate, carrot, and lemon cakes to keep all the varieties of taste buds happy!
Mister Phill is just one of the loveliest people you’ll ever meet. After seeing his photos on Rock My Wedding we didn’t look for anyone else. A one-hour skype session later and he was booked, not only for his photography, but also for his manner and kindness, it was a no brainer. His photos of the day capture it in a way we never could have dreamed of, and we will always be so grateful for that.
I guess, for Alex and I, we decided that although it was our wedding day, we wanted to make it a celebration of the people that we love, and I think people felt that, which made the day really special for everyone, not just us. Thinking about the day this way really took any stress away; we were getting married, and our favourite people were all going to be in one place, so it was going to be perfect whatever happened!
The one person I really have to mention is my brother in law Sam – a wonder of a man, an electrician, carpenter and all round handy man, the day would not have come together without him. He strung all of the beautiful lights, cut the numbers, and crafted the epic flower box. And brides, I am happy to say, he is available for hire!
Our day was perfect, largely because of our wonderful families and all of the time, effort and generosity they gave. We had quite the party, and now we get to have quite the life!