First and foremost bride Jackie’s custom ‘Clemence’ Halfpenny London bridal gown is a knockout. All that appliqué is just heavenly, and she looks like a goddess amongst the white Italian venue Masseria Potenti in Puglia.
I also can’t deny how refreshing it is to see an array of colours and prints worn by her best girls. A sure fire way of including all your favourites in the line up.
Then there’s the outdoor reception of dreams, filled with brightly coloured florals, vines and fairy lights and looking equally magical by day as it does by night.
I’m so glad fate brought this couple together, as it means we get to swoon over their adorable love story, and all the dreamy captures by Petar Jurica.
Visit our archives for more real brides and designs by Kate Halfpenny.
Jackie the Bride: Harry and I met at the Wythe Hotel rooftop in Williamsburg on a hot Sunday in June. I lived in NYC at the time, and he was over from London, visiting our mutual friend. We hit it off and then remained ‘pen pals’ — the digital modern day version! We carried on writing for months, until my job sent me to London for a business trip, which ironically resulted in a job offer. I moved to London about a year after we met, and we got engaged two years later. It was all very serendipitous!
Harry knew Rome was at the top of my list of places to visit, so he organised a weekend away. He asked me to marry him the first night we were there with a gorgeous, vintage-style bespoke ring. It was an absolute surprise! We spent the rest of the weekend eating, drinking and exploring all of the amazing history there. By the end of the trip, Harry had been converted into an Italy lover (he was previously a staunch Francophile)! That made Italy an obvious choice for our wedding location.
Masseria Potenti Wedding Venue
We actually found our venue inspiration on Rock My Wedding! I was scouring RMW Italian posts, and after what felt like hundreds, we saw one featuring a Masseria Wedding. It looked unique and beautiful yet understated, which is exactly what we wanted. We found Masseria Potenti thanks to my friend Kirstyn’s recommendation, and the minute we got there, we knew it was the place. Anyone who has ever been there will understand — it’s like stepping into a beautiful, tranquil oasis. The family who owns it are the loveliest people with the aesthetic and chef skills to match, which made designing the look and feel of the wedding effortless. We wanted all of our guests to feel like they were on holiday (which they were!) and the Masseria allowed that.
Brightly Coloured Wedding Flowers
We wanted to keep to the natural, whitewashed beauty of the Masseria, which already had gorgeous details in the giant cacti, delicate lighting, vintage rugs, etc. I wanted to add in pops of bright colour to contrast the white backdrop. We used all local and seasonal flowers, dotting bouquets and hanging flowers everywhere. My bouquet and flower crown kept with the bright theme. All of the flowers and venue setup was handled by Chiara, one of the Masseria Potenti owners, Noemi, and their team, who did an amazing job. We wanted the invitations to look and feel like the venue as well. I found some botanical images I liked, and Harry’s talented graphic design friend Brian (NIPSY designs) brought them to life.
Wedding Food & Drink
Harry and I both love food, so having high quality food and options for everyone was important to us. Masseria Potenti made all of it, and it was delicious! We had apertivo during the cocktail hour with many choices including burrata with chili jam, aubergine parmigiana, cured meats and more. For dinner, we served seafood linguini followed by steak with Mediterranean herbs. Vegetarians had orecchiette with pesto and zucchini, and the kids had orecchiette with meatballs. We had a range of Italian desserts on a dessert tower (cannoli, tiramisu) and then a lemon cake with lemon buttercream frosting, all made by Masseria Potenti. We served beers and wine before the ceremony, prosecco after, Puglian wines during dinner and a full open bar during the party. We wanted everyone to eat, drink and celebrate from start to finish!
Live Jazz Wedding Band & DJ Sets
Having an element of live music was important to us, so we hired this GREAT Puglian band called Olive Oil Jazz Band on a recommendation from a friend. I had play them “In My Life” by the Beatles on a guitar and mandolin (no lyrics) while my dad walked me down the aisle. We are lucky to have quite a few professional DJ friends, so we had a great lineup of Leo Belchez, Loz Curran, Dom Chung and Mark Hindle, who gifted us their DJ skills despite also being wedding guests! The music was incredible – everyone of all ages danced until 2am.
Candid Wedding Photographer
Harry and I both wanted natural, unforced photos and a photographer that respected that. We were so lucky to have found Petar Jurica from a recommendation. Petar is so talented, and focuses on capturing the candid beauty of the day, rather than posed shots. He was such a pleasure to work with and we are thrilled with how our photos turned out.
We were unsure whether we wanted a video at first as we worried it could be invasive on the day, but heard from many friends who didn’t that it was a huge regret. We decided to use someone local as wanted to support the Puglian area as much as possible, and got so lucky finding Marco Odorino and his team.
Custom Clemence Halfpenny London Bridal Gown
I wanted a dress that was simple yet fashionable, and appropriate for the venue. After going to 8 or 9 appointments and not loving anything, I went on my own to Halfpenny London, on my friend Jamie’s recommendation. The minute I walked into the beautiful, vintage inspired showroom I knew that’s where I’d find it. I chose a Custom Clemence gown, which I saw in a blush colour practically growing off the rack with its floral appliqués. I had it made in ivory as it better suited my skin tone and the venue. I wore it with a simple long veil, also from Halfpenny. Kate is so talented and her team was such a pleasure to work with!
Bridal Hair & Makeup
I’m so lucky that my dear friend Lulu Plews is a talented hair and make-up artist, so she got me ready, which was really special. She also did the hair for my mom and Harry’s mom. One of my bridesmaids Brette loves doing make up and is great at it, so she offered to do the rest of the bridesmaids. Their hair was done by a local Puglian stylist team, organized by Masseria Potenti.
My accessories all happened to be very sentimental. The necklace I wore is a vintage piece with gold, pearl and aquamarine (my something blue) that belonged to Harry’s great grandmother, given to me by my now mother-in-law. I wore a marcasite and amethyst (my birthstone) bracelet, which had belonged to my Grandma Dorothy. I used a vintage gold and cream beaded bag that was also Grandma Dorothy’s, given to me by my Aunt Sue. The earrings I wore are Sydney Evan yellow gold diamond pave disc studs, loaned to me by my friend Tamar (my something borrowed). I knew I’d completely destroy my shoes dancing so I didn’t splurge on them, but I loved them! They were Caparros Helena embellished in pewter, picked out by my mom.
Cream Three Piece Grooms Suit
Harry wore a bespoke cream three-piece suit, a navy tie from Hackett, vintage cuff links and Grenson brogues. I helped him decide on a white shirt, but the rest he chose on his own, and he looked so handsome if I do say so!
Different Bridesmaid Dresses
I wanted all of my bridesmaids to feel comfortable, so I let them pick their own dresses, suggesting floor length and bright colours. It came together beautifully, they all looked amazing. I had white flower crowns made for each of them to contrast my white dress and bright flower crown.
Mother of The Bride Outfit
My mom looked stunning in a teal gown from Tadashi Shoji, which we had fun choosing together.
Flower Girls & Page Boys
The flower girls (our nieces) were adorable in yellow Louise Misha dresses and white flower crowns while the page boys (our nephews) wore white linen shirts from H&M kids.
The ushers all had white boutonnieres but otherwise chose their own outfits. Last but not least, our beloved cocker spaniel Winnie, (she is the reason we drove from London to Puglia for the wedding!) wore a bright silk flower collar, made by Harry’s talented friend Anna Day of The Flower Appreciation Society. My 6-year old nephew walked her down the aisle!
We tried to use our talented network of friends, personal recommendations or local Puglian vendors wherever possible, so our wedding really reflected both us and the Puglian region. Because of our love of food, Harry and I named the tables after our favorite restaurants we’ve visited around the world, with a card explaining the story behind each. We also made homemade limoncello (a true labor of love for me and the bridesmaids!) that served as favors for each guest (mango juice for the kids, which they loved). My sister and I handwrote all 140 bottle tags with a personal message. I gave my flower girls and page boys tambourines, which I tied colourful ribbons to and wrote their names on. We dined and danced under the stars until 2am and to keep the party going, had a DJ’d pool party with cocktails, homemade pizzas and ice cream at the Masseria’s pool the next day. My biggest tips would be to use your network for help and ideas, and to think about designing a weekend which makes both you and your guests feel as relaxed as possible!