This morning’s wedding is a wedding of epic proportions and we absolutely love the colourful decor and happy vibes. Finding a venue that was going to satisfy both Lauren & Raj’s heritage was always going to be difficult – but they succeeded with the incredible Sezincote, a 200-year-old Mogul Indian palace set in the heart of the Cotswolds, which is still a family run estate. It’s a truly incredible venue with so many architectural details and gardens you could lose yourself in for days!
Lauren & Raj basically threw a massive party and the reception looks like amazing fun – everybody, from the youngest babies to the older grandparents is on the dance floor and there are huge smiles all round. It’s such a feel good wedding, these images from Laura & Tobiah will definitely make you smile too!
Lauren The Bride: I spent a long time looking for the perfect dress and the best boutique to buy it from. I wanted to really enjoy the experience and The White Room was by far the nicest place I’d been. They didn’t actually have the dress I wanted so I had a look at their designers online and ordered them in to store. When I was looking for my dress, I realised I wanted something quite plain and classic in style. My style is very contemporary and I’m not really a vintage person, so lace didn’t really seem right for me. We added the belt to the dress to add detailed and give it a bit of sparkle.
I’ve always wanted a pair of Louboutins, so I thought if ever I had an excuse to buy a pair, this was it! I wanted something simple and classic and a pair that didn’t look too much like wedding shoes so that I could wear them again.
In keeping with our contemporary styling, Raj chose a black dinner suit for his outfit with a skinny black tie rather than a bow tie. We wanted the black to contrast strongly with the bright and bold colours of the flowers and he wanted an outfit that was really smart and clean cut.
Raj and I spent ages trying to find a venue for our wedding. Given our mixed backgrounds, we had a lot of criteria to meet. We wanted something in the countryside, close to my hometown Gloucester but with a nod to Raj’s Indian heritage. We needed a venue that could cater for our 250 guests and be really flexible in terms of using our own suppliers and providing our own drinks. We loved the uniquely curved Orangery that served as the civil ceremony room and the beautiful grounds that we imagined all of our guests could explore. Sezincote met all of our criteria and more. We actually first saw our venue in the snow it was so stunning, we knew immediately that we had found the right place.
I spent a long time on Pinterest collecting my ideas about colour schemes, flowers and décor before we made any decisions. We wanted to go for a contemporary style with bright bold colours that would contrast with the simplicity of our outfits. I love bright colours and didn’t want to be limited to only one or two. The main colours we settled on were pink, coral, gold and jade green although other colours crept in so our colour scheme actually varied quite a bit. My sister-in-law, Iman and friend Indi (Suhaav) coupled with our florist Eve Lily did an incredible job of bringing my ideas and Pinterest board to life.
The Wedding Party
With all the bright colours in the décor and flowers, we decided to keep it simple with the bridesmaid and groomsmen outfits. For the girls, I chose a slate grey colour and a range of dresses from J.Crew. The girls then picked their own preferred style. To add a bit of colour and Indian fusion, the girls wore jade green heels from Zara and Indian jewellery sets and bindis. They all had mehndi patterns on their hands to add to the Indian look. The groomsmen all wore matching French Connection dinner suits with skinny black ties. Raj really wanted to achieve a slick, effortless look. And we added a touch of colour with a variety of different buttonholes.
The Ceremony Readings
By Bob Marley
Read by Harry Windsor (A good friend)
“He’s not perfect. You aren’t either, and the two of you will never be perfect. But if he can make you laugh at least once, causes you to think twice, and if he admits to being human and making mistakes, hold onto him and give him the most you can. He isn’t going to quote poetry, he’s not thinking about you every moment, but he will give you a part of him that he knows you could break. Don’t hurt him, don’t change him, and don’t expect for more than he can give. Don’t analyze. Smile when he makes you happy, yell when he makes you mad, and miss him when he’s not there. Love hard when there is love to be had. Because perfect guys don’t exist, but there’s always one guy that is perfect for you.”
A Bridge Across Forever by Richard Bach
Read by Hannah Gamlin (my cousin) – this was hand picked by Hannah and a really emotional part of the ceremony.
“A soulmate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to open the locks, our truest selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are; we can be loved for who we are and not for who we’re pretending to be. Each unveils the best part of the other. No matter what else goes wrong around us, with that one person we’re safe in our own paradise. Our soulmate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction. When we’re two balloons, and together our direction is up, chances are we’ve found the right person. Our soulmate is the one who makes life come to life.”
I walked down the aisle to Raj’s favourite song Wonderwall by Oasis (we had a live rendition) and our first dance was my favourite song Kiss Me by Sixpence None the Richer.
During the daytime, we were hoping that we would be able to spend most of it outside. The grounds are vast and stunning and we had included a treasure map in our order of service in the hope that guests would have the opportunity to explore. The weather in the lead up to the wedding was wet and full of thunderstorms. It was pouring down all morning. Fortunately, it cleared up just in time for me to walk down the aisle. We had another storm mid-ceremony and then fortunately just as we were ready to exit, the clouds cleared and it was a beautiful sunny day for the rest of the afternoon. This meant that our guests were able to enjoy the outdoors. We had Greg Fidler singing and playing his guitar during the reception and lots of giant lawn games for the children. We also hired a Tuk Tuk, which gave guests a tour around the grounds. After the first dance (and a quick outfit change), Raj and I re-entered with a Dhol player (Raj’s cousin) and the Indian music began! Dipps our DJ played a really great mix of Bhangra, RnB, Motown and Popular music. The dance floor was packed all evening.
We decided to have Indian food on the day. We served the canapés up in a street food style outside in the gardens (once it has stopped thunder storming!) And then the main meal was served as a sit down dinner the marquee. As is typical with Indian weddings, the food kept coming until the guests were full, so many of our guests had seconds, thirds and fourths! The food was a really mixture of meat, fish and vegetarian so guests were able to try a whole range of different dishes. For the dessert, we decided to keep it simple and serve our wedding cake, which was a naked cake of chocolate, vanilla and lemon layers topped with fruit and edible flowers. This was served with ice cream and kulfi (Indian ice cream).
Tobiah and Laura came recommended to us via a fellow photographer friend. We loved their style and were able to instantly relax around them, which made all the posing for photos bearable! On the day, they were fantastic, always going above and beyond. At one point, Tobiah was knee deep in a pond trying to get the best shots and Laura was off collecting cocktails for my family. We couldn’t have asked for a lovelier couple and we were beyond delighted with the beautiful shots they managed to capture.
Cineture are also good family friends but we chose them to create our wedding video because they are a group of great guys with a really interesting modern style. Plus they wanted to try out a few new things and we gave them free reign to do whatever they wanted… The drone flying around the venue certainly got our guests talking! We were so pleased with the final edit.
Photography by Tobiah Tayo
- Dress Augusta Jones
- Belt Stewart Parvin
- Boutique The White Room
- Jewellery Kinnari
- Shoes Louboutin
- Florist Eve Lily
- Styling Suhaav
- Venue Sezincote
- Cake Anna Cake Couture
- Catering Spice Nation
- Bridesmaids J. Crew
- Groom & Groomsmen French Connection
- Stationery This Is Orb
- Entertainment Greg Fidler
- DJ Dibbs Bhamrah
- Tuktuk Hire Nottingham Tuktuks
- Videography Cineture