This gorgeous couple have had me smiling like a cheshire cat the whole way through their city wedding. Chris Barber Photography has captured their infectious smiley personalities to a tee, making this a real joy to put together for you lovely lot. Plus bride Kath wears the most fabulous pink ombre Jenny Packham gown I ever did see. Making a real style statement and looking every bit the blushing bride. Groom Kel certainly knows a thing or two about fashion as well, looking very dashing in a grey suit and woven tie. I adore the simplicity of this day. Opting for a registry office ceremony and a pub reception but making each venue fabulous with a plethora of wild blooms, DIY projects, fabulous decor and fun ideas. This is the first wedding I've seen with a personalised social media snapchat filter, but I hope it won't be the last. Shall we take a look? I think you're going to go pin crazy for all the intuitive inspiration.
PlanningKath the Bride: Planning the wedding was daunting but exciting in equal measure. We both wanted a very personal celebration, something that felt very ‘us’. We both have a very clear sense of style and what we like so I wanted to ensure this came through - we’re not very traditional so we didn’t want anything too stuffy. I started looking through blogs and Pinterest to try and find what we liked, didn’t like etc so we could begin to shape our day. I knew I wanted it to be fun, relaxed and a day to remember for our friends and family so we did away the traditional bits we didn’t like and added new, more quirky bits.
VenueIt started with the reception venue. We had jumped around on what we wanted to do from New York to France to my childhood home in Farnham but we finally settled on keeping it local. We’d looked at a few different places in London and we settled on London Fields Brewery. It was a great space and they allowed us to hire it as a bit of a blank canvas – we could have our own caterers, drink, decorations etc. - but they would supply the essentials (staff, security, tableware). The way the venue was set up allowed us to have separate areas for each part of the day – a courtyard for the reception drinks and canapes; a room for dinner and a party/ bar room! We then went to see Stoke Newington Town Hall and fell in love. It felt perfect and personal as its the closest town hall to us.
DressI found my dress on my first shopping trip with my mum and two of my bridesmaids. However it took me a lot longer to pluck up courage to take the plunge as it was a little over budget. But as soon as I put it on I knew that was exactly how I wanted to look on my wedding day and it would go perfectly with the London location. I tried on a gold headpiece with it and it worked so well. The little bit of glitz worked beautifully with the dress. I wanted the dress to be centre stage so I wanted paired back jewellery. I wore my grandmother’s wedding band, she died when I was 19 and we were so very close it was nice to feel her there on the day. I have multiple ear piercings but I only wore some gold chevron studs (Maria Black) and a beautiful gold and diamond lightening bolt (Maria Tash) half way up one ear which Kel bought for me as a gift ahead of the wedding.
ShoesMy shoes were an easy buy. My mum and I popped into Selfridges shoe hall, after a boozy lunch, and I tried them on. I had always wanted a pair of Valentino rockstuds and I could tell the unique copper/ champagne colour would be perfect for the dress. I asked my mum to take a pair of old wedges on the day but I managed to stay in my Valentinos for the full 14 hours, they were SO comfortable. My dream shoe!
BridesmaidsI knew I wanted a gold theme- it’s a bit of a running joke how much I love gold. I think the first thing I bought were the bridesmaid skirts. I had 4 bridesmaids, all different heights and shapes with one who would be 8 months pregnant by the wedding. I thought skirts and tops would work far better than dresses to allow that flexibility. I fell in love with the gold pleated skirts and so rushed to buy them (and one for me). I then had the challenge to find a top that worked with the dress. Because of the ombre effect I couldn’t even have a swatch so had a lot of hunting from memory and popped into Jenny Packham more than once. I found the perfect tops at Selected Femme at ASOS. My 9 year old niece was our flower girl, something she has wanted to do since she when she was little. I found her an ivory and gold dress she absolutely loved from Monsoon. I wanted her in Converse but that wasn’t really her style so we settled on some gold ballet pumps. I didn’t’ want her to have a grown up bouquet but something a little more fun and quirky so I got her a very understated flower crown and a large clear balloon with gold, ivory and pink confetti and tassle tail. She went down the aisle first, holding the balloon. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house it was such a beautiful, ethereal moment.
Grooms SuitWith Kel’s suit I had to guide him towards grey without letting on because I was concerned his initial idea of bright blue would heavily clash with my dress! Kel has an awesome sense of style and so I knew he’d pick something awesome. He managed to get his suit in the sale at Hardy Amies and brought the look together with the classic navy tie from Drakes who do fab woven designs. We played with gold or pink for the ushers but it just looked too ‘weddingy’. Who knew gold ties looked so bad?! We bought ties for the ushers and a pocket square for the best man.
TransportBecause we were in London we took the opportunity to hire a traditional Fairway taxi to take me to the ceremony and an old Routemaster for the guests. John from weddingtaxis.co.uk was the most helpful, perfect driver. He put us at ease and helped us no end. They also allowed me to order a half bottle of champagne, a little treat for Kel and I after the ceremony. We decided that we would take some alone time and travel separately to the reception. The main advice we got was to find time just the two of us to look around and appreciate the day so it was a lovely opportunity to be alone and look at each other and say ‘ahhh we did it’! I remember vividly being young and seeing a wedding bus and thinking it was possibly the coolest thing I had ever seen so I promised myself one day I’d have one. We chose a company that allowed us to offer guests a glass of champagne as they got onboard. The ushers did a great job topping everyone up, they were in pretty high spirits when they all arrived at the reception! We also managed to keep the personalised bus blind which we framed and have hanging in our hall – it looks awesome!
DrinksWe knew we wanted people to have a good time, that was a priority, so we went to France to buy wine and spirits to ensure we were able to supply it all evening. We bought Aperol for spritzs for the reception along with champagne and London Fields Brewery beer. We wanted food that was laid back and sharing style that fitted the venue and vibe – nothing too stuffy. Lily De Stefano, founder of the Detox Kitchen, was my bridesmaid so she offered their services. The food was incredible and rocketed immediately to the top of many guests’ best wedding food lists. We had canapes during the drinks reception in the courtyard followed by a sharing platter of cruites, beetroot (mind-blowing) and lamb falafels with a choice of chicken, lamb or vegetarian main with selection of sharing salads per table. I wanted a rich dessert that would go well with our dessert wine so we had a chocolate mousse with salted caramel meringue.
Colour Scheme/DecorOur colour scheme was really led by my dress and love of gold. We wanted a fun feel to the wedding so we bought multi-coloured bunting for the outside space which worked perfectly for the reception drinks. I spent a lot of time on holiday with my family in the Caribbean so I wanted to nod to that with a less traditional music choice. We hired a steel drum duo who were absolutely fantastic. They set the tone for the reception, everyone was so relaxed and happy. Regarding décor I’d say more is more. I wanted to ensure we had our own stamp on things so I collected a range of old family wedding photographs and put them in the chill out room with the coffees, tea pigs tea and massive glass bottle of marshmallows (which we are still getting through). It was a nice nod to the past. We also had some fun with old photos and along with putting some of us along one of the walls, we put baby photos of us to denote the male and female loos. I arranged for the ushers to take each table of 8 a selfie stick to capture photos. We had already decided on a hashtag (#ItsTannerTime) which we put on the bottom of all of the printed materials to promote social sharing. I work in digital marketing and so my team designed and bought us a geo-located Snapchat filter for the wedding day. It went down an absolute storm!
StationeryFor the save the dates we wanted something easy and fuss free so we ordered a bespoke ink stamp and stamped luggage tags to send out. My friend Lorena is an incredibly talented designer so she offered to design the invites and stationery. I hadn’t expected such beautiful work and she managed to sum up the fun, quirky feel of the wedding with the little icons from the invite which ran through to the programme and order of service. She also designed food and drinks menus for the meal and evening buffet. We ordered rustic napkins which matched the feel of the venue and menu style. I had a group of friends who came round every Sunday in the run up to the wedding to help with crafts, we names ourselves The Craft-Werk Girls. They helped puff hundreds of pom poms and spray paint everything gold. I knew I wanted to make the placesettings so we stamped each name on by hand and created the coolest little gold animals. I bought small plastic toy animals, hack-sawed a slit into their backs and spray painted them gold. Unfortunately I didn’t prime them so the gold paint reacted and wouldn’t dry so we had to remove the paint and do it all again. Top tip – buy a suitable primer before you spray paint anything.
EntertainmentWe couldn’t have chosen a more amazing band. We liked the fact they played a range of songs from all different eras but they would also DJ for the remainder of the evening. They were the most amazing, passionate, fun guys. Everyone danced, even the oldies. Then later on in the night they nailed a bit of a Drum & Bass.
ExtrasA fantastic added talking point was a suggestion by the lovely barman at London Fields Brewery. He suggested taking a tray of run and vodka shots around, as you can image they went down a storm! I wanted everyone to get in the party spirit so I set up a glitter and glow stick station by the dance floor and I think by the end everyone was covered head to toe. We set up our own polaroid photobooth and guest book with a few props I bought cheaply on eBay. It worked perfectly and saved us money on hiring something.
Cheese TowerWe both absolutely love cheese so we treated ourselves to a cheese cake from La Fromagerie for our wedding cake. We paired this with a selection of chutneys and pickled onions made by family and family friends and a massive pork pie from The Ginger Pig. My mum (very kindly) then made 300 sausage rolls and 200 cheese straws to come out at 10pm as a bit of an evening buffet. People loved that they could grab a cheeky sausage roll while dancing!
PhotographerChris, our photographer was utterly amazing. He arranged an ‘engagement shoot’ a few weeks before the wedding. Kel was particularly sceptical about seeing himself on camera, its not really natural for either of us so we were pretty nervous. But the session was so much fun, Chris put us at complete ease and it meant we knew him when we saw him on the day and he knew a bit about us and what we wanted. He captured the most beautiful photos.
VideographerWe weren’t going to splash out on a video but my uncle is a wedding videographer so kindly captured our day. It was amazing to be able to see all the bits we missed in the blur of the day. It seems like a big expense at the time but I’d recommend pushing the budget and getting a video.
CeremonyWe asked Kel’s sister Ruth and our friend Adam to read at the ceremony. I wanted them to pick something they felt would be right for the day. Ruth picked the most beautiful poem – After The Lunch by Wendy Cope. It reminded me of when Kel and I used to say goodbye at the station every weekend and I cry every time I read it. Adam personalised Baz Luhrman’s Everybody Wears Sunscreen and it was hilarious! Funny and warm in equal measure.
Special MomentsJust an ace group of people who were all just genuinely happy to see us get married, our friends really made it. Thank you to the bridesmaids and ushers who were such an amazing help on the day. Especially the ushers and Master of Ceremonies, Alex, who I briefed with full briefing documents in the week running up to the wedding. They really took your jobs seriously and their commitment meant everything ran smoothly.
Dress Designer: Jenny Packham | Earrings: Maria Trash | Maria Black | Makeup & Hair: Andrea Innocenti | Engagement Rings & Wedding Bands: DB Gems @ Greys Antiques | Bridal Shoes: Valentino Rockstuds | Bridesmaid Tops: ASOS - Selected Femme | Bridesmaid Skirts: Zara | Grooms Suit: Hardy Amies | Tie: Drakes | Shirt: Emmett | Tie Pin: Lanvin | Grooms Shoes: Cheany | Venues: London Fields Brewery | Stoke Newington Town Hall | Florist: That Flower Shop | Caterer: The Detox Kitchen | The Ginger Pig | Cheese Tower: La Fromagerie | Balloons: Bubblegum Balloons | Stationery: Designs by Lorena Teruel | Entertainment: Solid Steelband | Entrée via Tailored Entertainment | Transport: Taxi | Bus | Videographer: David Brazier