You will be forgiven for thinking you’ve been transported back in time to the roaring 20s when you see this elegant Great Gatsby inspired wedding. The beautifully captured black & white images by Matthew Long Photography make you feel like you are viewing a romantic silent movie.
The commitment to the theme really shines through in all the details and decor, none more evident than the fabulous attire the wedding party is adorning. Suave tuxedos and decadent gowns complete with vintage hair and makeup make for one glamorous wedding party.
The array of showstopping art deco cakes are also pretty spectacular, note the plural as there was not one amazing creation but several, each one as mesmerising as the next. What a truly amazing treat for all the guest to indulge into; and all made by the super talented Bride her self.
Jayne The Bride: Andrew and I had only been together for just under two years when we got married and our relationship has been a whirlwind from the beginning. With the risk of sounding cheesy, it was love at first sight. We decided to move in together after only being together for 6 weeks and were engaged after 10 months of being together.
We decided we wanted our wedding to be 1920’s style as we both loved the glamour and class of this era. It also went well for the time of year being a Christmas wedding, as we could have lots of gold and sparkle. We didn’t want the usual red-themed Winter wedding so opted for a black and gold theme with pearls and sparkle.
I have always been very creative and so loved every element of planning our wedding. Anything that could have been made – I made it! I like to think that no detail was ignored. Having my own cake business helped with this as it meant I could make our wedding cakes (and lots of other sweet treats). I was very lucky that Andrew was happy for me to get carried away with the finer details!
I felt very calm on the wedding day and only felt nervous just before walking down the aisle. Andrew on the other hand, was an emotional wreck for most of the day – even crying over sausages at breakfast! The minute I saw him when I entered the ceremony room, all my nerves disappeared and I could look at no one but him. My Dad had to tell me to slow down as I was in such a hurry to get to the front of the room as I just could not wait to marry him…
My wedding dress was by Eliza Jane Howell and was called ‘Jayne’. I purchased it from Blackburn Bridal Couture. I only tried on around five wedding dresses but knew instantly when I tried this on that it was ‘the one’. It also had the same name as me so I took this as a sign. It was completely different to the style I had in mind and I never thought a dress like this would suit me but I instantly fell in love with it. The dress set the tone for the whole wedding as we had initially wanted to go for a themed wedding but once I had found my dress we decided that a 1920’s style would be more suited for the time of year and it fitted in perfectly with the venue.
As my dress was so detailed, I didn’t want to wear too much jewellery so just wore some art deco style earrings from Jenny Packham. These were my ‘something borrowed’ from one of my close friends – Rebecca.
My engagement ring is also from the 1930’s and so this fit in perfect with the dress, earrings and theme of the wedding. I had to have my wedding band made for me to fit around my engagement ring as it was an unusual shape. I used a local jeweller called David Roberts who specialises in this kind of style. He used 8-cut diamonds in my wedding band so it matched my engagement ring and looked as though it was from the same era.
My wedding shoes were from Emmy and were the famous Francesca shoe. As soon as I saw these I fell in love with them and didn’t care how much they cost, I just knew I had to have them!
I decided not to wear a veil but instead wore a headpiece from Jenny Packham. This was also Art Deco style and called the Tzarina Headdress.
Hair and make-up
We used a company called Lipstick and Curls for the hair and make-up of the Bride, Bridesmaids, Mother-of-the-Bride, Mother-of-the-Groom and my Niece Lily’s, who was a Flower Girl, hair. I was lucky enough to have Amanda, who is the owner of the company, do my hair and make-up. She had a colleague called Kate with her and between them they had to do the Bride, 6 Bridesmaids, 2 Mums and a Flower Girls’ hair! They started at 7am and we were only just ready in time for the midday ceremony. I was very specific about the style I wanted the girls to have their hair and so pleased with the result. Lipstick and Curls specialise in vintage hair and make-up.
Lily & May were our florist. Claire is the owner and works alongside Sapphire. I always knew I would have them do my wedding flowers as I had followed them on Facebook for quite some time and loved their work. As the colour scheme was black and gold, I decided to go for peach and ivory flowers. My bouquet contained white o’hara garden roses, pale peach roses, avalanche roses, black & white anemones, peach spray roses, caramel antique roses, apple tea carnations and eucalyptus. It was tied in black ribbon and had an original 1920’s brooch on. The Bridesmaids had a similar bouquet but in a smaller version. Andrew had a white rose with a black pin centre as his buttonhole and the Groomsmen all had peach spray roses. We then had matching flowers to dress the venue. I decided to go for lots of little vases as we had crystal candelabra centre pieces which sat on a mirror and the flowers surrounded this. I collected as many small crystal vases as possible by searching boot sales and charity shops for months and months!
We only looked at one venue and instantly fell in love with Downhall Country House Hotel. Andrew is from Wales, we needed somewhere with lots of accommodation for all his family to come down for the wedding and this ticked every box. It had huge Christmas trees, an open fire, beautiful grounds, gigantic chandeliers, and the staff were very friendly and helpful. We went to visit Downhall in December 2013 (approximately 1 year before we got married) as knew we wanted a Christmas wedding and wanted to see what it was like at Christmas.
We used two companies to help style the venue. The majority was done by Mediterranean Venue Stylists who provided the pearl back drop for the main room, a black and white checked dance floor with some cocktail tables around the dancefloor, extra lighting, pearl draping on the top table and ceremony table, 6ft candleabras and a few other small touches.
Lovely Wedding Touches supplied the crystal candleabras that went on each table, the 4ft light-up LOVE sign, and the black seat pads which we used with Downhall’s gold banqueting chairs. They also supplied ivory lace table cloths for each table.
I did a lot of the styling and made most of the decorations myself. This included sourcing black, gold and white vintage tea cups, saucers and side plates for each place setting. Most of these were purchased from eBay but I spent months trawling boot sales and charity shops looking for bargains! I also purchased gold charger plates for each place setting. I made vintage telegrams which we used for our guestbook. These were to be filed in a vintage filing cabinet which I purchased from an antique store and I made a sign to go with it. For the favours, I made a gold bauble with each guests name on so they could take it home and hang on their Christmas tree. Then each year when they take out their Christmas decorations, they will have a nice reminder of our wedding day. There were lots of other things I made – too many to list them all!
I made my own wedding cakes as this is what I do for a living and would never have been happy having someone else make my cake. This was very stressful and kept me busy right up till the day before the wedding! As this is my profession, I felt the pressure and knew everyone would have high expectations. Our main cake was 6 tiers and made from a mixture of real 24 carat gold leaf and a matching pattern to our wedding stationery. I also made two additional tiered cakes and a whole take of cakes a treats! This included: cupcakes, cake pops, French macaroons, mini meringues, cookies, and then a whole selection of sweets and chocolates. As it was Christmas time I wanted everyone to feel over- indulged and for it to feel like a real treat table. I tried to stick to our colour scheme and had sweets in black, white and gold. I even managed to source black and white candy canes from America! I also decided to buy some fancy paper and re-wrapped some Dairy Milk Oreo, Galaxy and Milkybar chocolate so they matched the theme.
I had 6 Bridesmaids and found the Bridesmaid dresses on Etsy. It took me a while to find the right dresses as they needed to be 1920s style and I didn’t want typical Bridesmaid dresses. When I eventually found them on Etsy I couldn’t believe how perfect they were! The style of them matched my wedding gown and I spoke with the dress maker who was selling with them to slightly adapt them for me. I wish I had purchased one for myself now as they were so lovely!
We decided Andrew would wear a tux after watching The Great Gatsby. This was one of the first decisions we made to lead us in the direction of having a 1920’s style wedding. Andrew had a tailor made tux by a local tailor. Andrew’s dress shirt was from Emmett London and his shoes by Russell and Bromley.
Andrew had 2 Best Men and 3 Ushers. We hired their tuxes from Moss Bros.
Flower Girls & Page Boys
As well as Best Men, Ushers and Bridesmaids we decided to have all our Nieces and Nephews as Flower Girls and Page Boys. This meant we had 6 Flower Girls and 5 Page Boys ranging between the ages of 6 months to 6 years old! The girls wore vintage style cream lace dresses which I also purchased from Etsy. I found some beautiful art deco style embellishments and attached them to the waist bands and made hair bands to match. The Page Boys were also in tuxes and were all mini versions of the Groomsmen. They all looked very cute but it was carnage trying to get them up the aisle!
I made all the stationery myself. I have always helped out and made wedding stationery in the past for family and friends so decided I wanted to make ours. I took inspiration from Pinterest and designed them from scratch. I made save the dates, invites, menus, table names, place settings and lots of signs for the venue.
During the reception drinks we had a Saxophonist called Joe Green. This instantly set the tone for the wedding and made us all feel as though we were in a different era. He also played some Christmas songs which was lovely with it being a week before Christmas.
In the evening reception we had a band called The Good Things. One of our Best Men was the lead singer!
Steve Soar videoed our wedding. He was recommended by our photographer Matt. We instantly fell in love with Steve and his work when we first met him. We wanted some of the video to be shot so it looked like an old fashioned film reel and Steve was able to do this for us. It was great having both him and Matt around all day with us.
We used Matthew Long Photography to photograph our wedding. Matt had done a friend’s wedding the year before and so we knew instantly that we would like him to do our wedding as we both loved his style and the creativity of his work. He was the first thing we booked after getting engaged! Matt added a lot of value to our day as it just felt like he was one of our friends, he was a superstar!
Photography by Matthew Long Photography
- Dress Designer Eliza Jane Howell
- Bridal Boutique Blackburn Bridal
- Earrings Jenny Packham
- Bridal Shoes Emmy ‘Francesca’ Shoes
- Headdress Jenny Packham Tzarina
- Hair & Makeup Lipstick and Curls
- Bridesmaid Dresses Etsy
- Groom Shirt Emmett London
- Grooms Shoes Russell and Bromley
- Groomsmen & Page Boys Moss Bros.
- Flower Girls Etsy
- Venue Downhill Country House hotel
- Florist Lily and May
- Cake Maker Made by Mollie
- Decor Mediterranean Occasions
- Lovely Wedding Touches
- Saxophonist Joe Green
- Band The Good Things
- Videographer Steve Soar
- Wedding Ring David Roberts