Don't you just love the way Bride Lia's Jenny Packham gown flows as she walks effortlessly and elegantly through London city with her beau. They look uber stylish together, with the urban streets making fabulous backdrops for couples' portraits captured by Natalie J Weddings. All their guests look totally relaxed as they enjoy the celebrations at Groom Aaron's family building Alva Studio in Hackney, with gorgeous wild blooms decorating the tables and adding a pop of colour to the stylish white studio venue. Plus, there's a delicious-looking croque en bouche tower instead of a traditional wedding cake which you just have to see.
Lia The Bride: When starting to look at wedding dress designers I loved how elegant and flattering Jenny Packham dresses were. My dress was one of my first dresses I tried on, however, I did go to two other boutiques to try on other style of dresses to ensure I was 100% sure of the dresses. It was also so much fun to spend time with my mother on this wonderful experience.
We decided to go for a more informal look and wanted the Groom and Groomsmen to feel comfortable in their suits. Suit Supply offer a great variety and also can have the suits unlined so that they are light to wear during the hotter months.
The building of Alva Studio Hackney belongs to Aaron’s family. We knew from the start that we wanted to have the wedding in East London because Aaron was born there and we spent many years living in Shoreditch so feel it’s a good reflection of us. The reason we decided that Alva Studio’s would work was because it was close to Hackney Town Hall, which we wanted to use as we love the grand exterior of the building and it offered outside space which not many London venues do. Because it’s a photographic studio it’s also like a blank canvas which gave us so much flexibility.
We were not too strict on a colour scheme. My main focus was to have the flowers that were in season and use as much rich bright colours for the centre prices as the background was white. I also wanted to use lighting such as the festoon lights inside and out to bring both spaces together and for the courtyard use uplighters and large candle lanterns to give it that relaxed vibe.
It was so nice having my closest four friends by my side. They were the most beautiful bridesmaids and organised the most amazing hen in Croatia. Aaron had his two younger brothers and two of his longest friends with him. They were less helpful in the wedding prep but you’re always guaranteed to have a laugh with them! A magical moment was having my mum do the welcome speech and having my best friend speak as a well was truly amazing.
I was set on having a good band. I searched for hours on which was the best band – I think this was the thing I spent the most amount of time researching. We decided on Flood the Floor – the reviews were great and I wanted something contemporary. Our first dance was Your Love Gets Sweeter by Finley Quaye. We absolutely love him and it was a song that we have always loved listening to.
We knew from the start that we wanted Arnold & Henderson to cater. We’ve eaten their food so many times at events and love the Rochelle Canteen in Shoreditch. They make the most amazing canapés and their croque-en-bouche was divine. It was a great moment smashing it. We also have a cocktail bar which went down extremely well, especially the amaretto sours!
This is a hard one to know where to start. You get confused by how many there are when you google wedding photographers. In the end, I started asking about for recommendations. The one thing I wanted to ensure was that I didn’t want to spend too long having staged photos and wanted the photographer to be discreet so that we felt comfortable throughout the day. When I looked on Natalie’s website, I absolutely loved the photos, both wedding and fashion pics. They just looked so natural and really captured the moment. She showed me her wedding albums and we went through all the details in advance. On the day, she was invaluable! She was the person I was listening to the most during morning whilst getting ready and talking me through the day and next steps. I used her as a coach more than anything. The day just goes by in a blur and so I lent on her more than anyone else to let me know where/when I should be. Aaron absolutely hates having his photo taken so she did a great job capturing him. The wedding album Natalie created for us was excellent - incredible quality and is magical to look through. It took us hours to select which photos we wanted in it as there were so many amazing ones.
This was more of a last-minute addition. We had not planned on having the wedding filmed but listening to friends that had recently got married – those that had not had a videographer really regretted it. Thinking about it now, it was a great idea. Especially to capture those special moments like walking down the aisle and speeches which is so easy to forget afterwards.