There’s so much gorgeousness to share from Kate and Luke’s big day, that I don’t really know where to begin. So I’m just going to let the images do the talking. When the couple are as creative as Kate and Luke and they trust Samuel Docker behind the lens, you just know the wedding is going to be perfection. From the fashion, to the venue, to the styling, to the food – every detail is just so thoughtful and cohesive.
Enjoy this one beauties, it’s a contender for my favourite wedding of 2017! And I’m pretty certain you’re going to agree…
Kate the Bride: As soon as I saw the India gown by New Zealand brand, Rue de Seine I knew it was the one. The only situation was that it was a limited edition and only available in their New Zealand boutique. For weeks I just couldn’t stop thinking about it and couldn’t find anything else that compared, so I decided to order it all over Skype. I then had it altered to fit perfectly in London by Charlotte of Sewn Right. Once I had chosen the dress I could then build the rest of my outfit. I wanted pure white flowers to decorate my hair but didn’t want a typical flower crown. Nadia Di Tullio brought my vision to life by creating my wrapped flower tiara. Warren of Warren Browne, who is also an old school friend styled my hair and I did my makeup myself.
My veil and shoes will always be so special to me. The veil was a bespoke creation by Daisy Sheldon, who embroidered mine and Luke’s names, the wedding date and parts of the pattern from my dress onto the train. I work for footwear designer, Sophia Webster. My all-time favourite shoes are her Birdie mules. For our wedding day, Sophia made me a custom pair in amazing ice blue glitter, complete with the Wifey For Lifey sole. For jewellery, I wore an Annina Vogel horse shoe necklace that Luke bought me as a gift the morning of the wedding. My wedding ring was a bespoke creation by Andrew Geoghegan. I wanted a statement ring but something that complimented my engagement ring. The result is more than I could have hoped.
Me and my bridesmaids are all best friends that first met at school. They know me inside out so totally understood the look I was going for with their outfits. The dresses were from ASOS and their floral hair pieces were also made by Nadia Di Tullio. On the morning of the wedding, seeing them look so beautiful and perfectly matching all for my wedding day was such an overwhelming moment. Nadia also made our beautiful bouquets, and the groomsmen’s button holes.
Luke the Groom: I love the classic, timeless look of double breasted suits, and I knew I wanted navy right from the start. Reiss do a really good selection of suits and was the only place I could find a good choice of double breasted. Luckily I came across the perfect suit whilst shopping in London one day – a 2 piece navy double breasted suit with a subtle windowpane check, which was a nice detail to make the suit a little bit more unique and to separate me from my groomsmen. I accessorised with a simple navy Richard James tie, white straight fold pocket square and gold accessories including a Larsson & Jennings watch and Dunhill tie bar. For shoes, I opted for a pair of Trickers black leather monk shoes with gold buckle.
For my groomsmen, I wanted them to be wearing navy to keep the look simple. Apart from that I let them choose whatever suit they wanted so they felt comfortable. They also chose their shoes, which were classic leather brogues. I provided them with the accessories – navy polka dot ties, navy Reiss socks, white pocket squares and silver tie bars.
We have lived in Brixton in London for many years but it was always going to be Derbyshire – the place we both grew up. Our ceremony was held in Melbourne Church. Walking in with my Dad, and seeing Luke stood at the end of the aisle was like no feeling I can explain. We kept the ceremony light-hearted with short hymns and readings from two friends. I had a black cab to get me to church and we hired an old London Routemaster bus for all the guests to bring an element of London to our day. Since getting engaged, every time Luke bought me flowers I dried the petals to use as the confetti. Often it would fill up our dining table so we had no space to eat, but it was totally worth it to mean that even the smallest parts of our day were personal.
We wanted our wedding to be a fun, relaxed party, and to create a day that was timeless and elegant and that reflected our own style. We chose the Riding School at Calke Abbey to hold our reception without viewing anywhere else, as we have always loved it and knew it would give us the freedom of a blank canvas. We loved the exposed brick walls, so decorated them simply with a few carefully placed light up arrows and a neon sign. We knew a key part of creating the right atmosphere was how we set up the Riding School – it is one long space with high ceilings so we were mindful that everything needed to flow.
The front area of the Riding School was for the bar and the lounge area for guests to relax in, and is where we held the drinks reception. As guests entered the Riding School, canapés and drinks were served and the band we hired played their first acoustic set. We filled the space with vases of simple white stocks, hydrangeas and wild flowers, which were all lovingly grown and arranged by my bridesmaid, Sarah’s Mum. We also framed the large double entrance doors with a white flower arch that I created. At the far end, we set up the dinner tables. We had three long tables that we dressed with classic white linen and Brixton beer bottles filled with flowers as a nod to our life there. All the chairs were old Bentwood chairs Luke had salvaged from a restaurant that he was redesigning. For the months leading up to the wedding we designed a little book containing photographs and funny memories of all our guests. We laid a copy on each dining chair, and as everyone took their seat we could hear so much laughter and reminiscing. They took a long time to pull together but were totally worth it when we saw everyone’s reaction.
Black Peppermint provided the delicious catering. In keeping with the tone of the day, we served relaxed, family-style sharing plates. We used our writing desk as the cake table, and decorated it with a large flower arrangement and some vintage Avery scales that Luke bought me for Christmas one year. I made our wedding cakes the week before the wedding. I love baking and it just wouldn’t have been right to hire someone else to do it! I made three six-layer 10-inch cakes – one chocolate with chocolate cream and ganache filling, one Sicilian lemon with lemon curd and buttercream and one carrot and walnut with cream cheese frosting. My absolute speciality is chocolate brownies though so we bought an old shop display unit and turned it into a brownie bar. I baked 288 brownies, which were served alongside the cakes, and went down a storm if I do say so myself! I have now started to offer the brownie bar service for other weddings and events. After dinner we played bingo. We got Joe, one of our groomsmen to host it. Having an interactive part to our day was so
much fun and got everybody really involved.
Festival Nights played the perfect balance between new and classic songs, all with a contemporary twist, and had the dance floor bouncing all night. We didn’t have a first dance, but instead they added Dancing In The Dark by Bruce Springsteen to their set list as it is one of our favourite songs – dancing to that with Luke was one of my personal favourite moments of the day. Another highlight was being thrown in the air on chairs at 11:30pm by our friends to No Diggity! A lot of the guests were staying in cottages on the Calke Abbey grounds, so at midnight we headed off to the largest cottage to continue the party.
Samuel Docker was our photographer. To us he was the ultimate choice. He is actually the brother of one of our ushers, but this wasn’t the reason for choosing him. We chose him for his beautiful documentary style pictures that he manages to fill with the emotion of the day and capture such natural moments. Our finished shots are just incredible, I’m not sure we will ever stop looking at them.
Photography by Samuel Docker Photography
- Bride Rue De Seine
- Alterations Sewn Right
- Wedding Ring Andrew Geoghegan
- Engagement Ring & Necklace Annina Vogel
- Shoes Sophia Webster
- Veil Daisy Sheldon
- Floral Design Nadia Di Tullio
- Ceremony Venue Melbourne Parish Church
- Reception Venue Calke Abbey Riding School
- Festoon Lights Fabric Theatre
- Catering Black Peppermint
- Bridesmaids ASOS
- Groom Reiss
- Tie Richard James
- Tie Bar Dunhill
- Watch Larsson & Jennings
- Shoes Trickers
- Entertainment Festival Nights
- Transport London Bus Hire
- Stationery & Cake The Bride & Groom