I don’t think I’ll ever grow out of the age where pink is my favourite colour. And while I love rich, deep and sophisticated bold colours, and earthy, natural neutrals – it’s pink that makes me smile. So from the moment I first clapped eyes on Paris and Lewis’ big day – I was very excited indeed to share it with you all. It’s just All. So. Pink.
But in a really cool way – not in a bedroom-of-a-five-year-old-girl way. Paris’ styling is gorgeous, the flower choice is bold, the tables are dressed beautifully and there is a dessert table nothing short of epic!
Not only that, but Paris looks AMAZE. Sporting a blush Vera Wang gown, dainty jewellery and an insanely hip undo that suits her down to the ground. Such a stylish Bride.
And Groom Lewis doesn’t scrub up too badly either! We do love a man who wears exactly what he wants on wedding day.
Lewis and I fell in love with the gardens on our first visit – the attention to detail and scale of the gardens really took us back – it didn’t seem to end (and we didn’t want it to!) From gypsy caravans to a romantic candlelit cave and beyond – the venue fit our eclectic style perfectly and we booked it on the first visit.
The venue came with a semi-permanent marquee (up through the Summer months) which held up to 200 – it was a completely blank canvas which suited us well as we wanted to put our own touch on the whole thing.
Having worked in fashion for the past few years, I considered the dress to be very important. After a lot of thought and more appointments, I found my perfect dress – a Vera Wang White Collection dress from David’s Bridal, East London. It was the opposite of what my husband to be, friends and family might have imagined me to wear – it was quite figure hugging, everyone thought I would go for something bigger and more princess-y. I knew I didn’t want a white dress and the pinky/peach champagne tone to this dress suited my skin and hair colour perfectly and the colour palette and theme we wanted for the day.
We decided to get married in a traditional setting – our local church (St Mary’s, Shenley Church End). We wanted the whole experience to be perfect – church bells, the organ and of course leaving the church as husband and wife to the wedding march! Our vicar Stephen Mosedale really put us at ease, making everyone laugh through the ceremony and giving the whole service a relaxed feel.
My Maid of Honour, Bridesmaids and Page Boys walked down the aisle in front of me. The girls colour theme was white and peach, with wild flowers whilst the boys wore relaxed tailoring – a light blue jacket and white shirt, matched with cream shorts and hi-top trainers.
Lewis’ Best Man and Usher wore matching grey flecked 3-piece suits with Ben Sherman shoes and scarves instead of ties – this was done to avoid the men in the wedding party looking too stuffy. Their outfits were finished off with silver bee cufflinks from Duchamp London – which the Dads also wore!
Lewis the Groom wore a suit which is a one-off from Duchamp London, in a very non-traditional colour…The pink suit was worn with a Zara waistcoat and shirt from Cos, and all buttons were changed to match each other. The outfit was finished off with a neck scarf, handmade to match the waistcoat, and a tie pin to hold the scarf in place.
Great Minds Think Alike
The night before the wedding I stayed with my parents and Lewis stayed with his, when we woke in the morning – we both had surprises. We had given our parents wedding presents to give to each other…without having discussed wedding presents before, we were both surprised to receive something from one another – and even more surprised to open up the exact same skull bracelet from our favourite London jewellery shop – The Great Frog! Lewis managed to cover the ‘something blue’ with his present too – by putting sapphires in the eyes of the skull which was a lovely touch. These also matched perfectly with our custom made, matching The Great Frog wedding rings which were engraved with our vows.
After having many different trials with 3 different hair dressers in the lead up to the wedding and not really liking much, I was a little worried about my hair on the day. As soon as Victoria arrived, she made me feel at ease, she’s great at up-do’s and knew exactly what is was that I wanted. She also curled my Maid of Honours hair and pinned in our flowers.
I wanted my make-up to look as natural and ‘me’ as possible but I’m obsessed with long eyelashes and couldn’t get married without long but natural lashes. So I went to Neelam Patel in Milton Keynes the day before the wedding and had amazing lash extensions. On the day I done everything else myself and a make-up artist friend who came to do my mum and maid of honours make up, dusted some natural gold liquid-to-powder eye-shadow on my eyelids which gave them a slight shimmer. Everything turned out better than I had expected and the look I chose complemented my dress perfectly.
We decided to opt for a wedding car which suited our outfits, the venue and the general laid back feeling of the day – a vintage VW Camper, hired locally from T2 4Fun.
We tried to stay away from a strict colour theme, instead opting for natural wild flowers and spring colours throughout the marquee and the decor we used. Incorporating hessian and natural woods helped us to bring the outside in and created the rustic feel we both wanted – we didn’t want anything to look too ‘overthought’. We managed to use a lot of pieces from our house which heavily influenced the style of the wedding – from the large light up LOVE sign, to jars, tins, frames and much more.
I spent the year leading up to the wedding hand crafting a lot of the decor and accessories as I wanted the marquee to have a very personal touch. We spent most weekends searching for vintage tea cups and quirky things we could use. We also designed all graphics at home ourselves, printing, cutting and sticking each and every thing you see in the details. I found this hugely rewarding when looking back at the pictures as we certainly didn’t take the easy route! All flowers through the wedding were sourced from The Flower Company Milton Keynes and we arranged the centrepieces ourselves.
On arrival to Flaxbourne Gardens, our guests were given a choice of summer cocktails inspired by our personal favourites, served in tea cups for the girls or jam jars for the boys, which they drank whilst listening to acoustic singer Alex covering some of our favourite songs. Each guest was also given a map which we’d designed, so that our guests could explore all of the gardens.
Our photographer Ashton was busy taking natural pictures whilst all of our guests arrived and videographer Carter Hewlett also shot some fab footage. We found our photographer – Ashton Jean-Pierre – at a wedding fair on Brick Lane (A Most Curious Wedding Fair) and instantly fell in love with his style. He shoots on film (and 1% iPhone), which gives the pictures a very timeless feel without sacrificing quality. He made everyone feel very comfortable and really got in the spirit of things on the day!
We chose to have a sit down meal for our wedding breakfast, with fishcakes or mozzarella sticks to start and chicken or fish as a main served with dauphinoise potatoes but kept a casual element to the meal by having platters of roasted veg to share around the table. After some (very funny and emotional) speeches and lots of champagne toasts we encouraged our guests to mingle and help themselves to our dessert table.
The dessert table was my project and I was very precious about making it look just right…along with all the other décor in the marquee! Lots of our friends and family helped out, baking cakes, tarts, cheesecakes and pies to give our table a homemade, ‘from the heart’ feel. Everyone tucked in and was so impressed with the mixture of goodies.
After the evening guests arrived, ‘Hettie’ the pizza van was open! Serving rustic, traditional Italian pizzas from a wood fired oven with a variety of toppings, our guests were spoilt for choice and stuffed by the end of the night!
We decided against a band, instead, on our invitations we asked our guests to pick a song they would love to hear. This meant our amazing DJ played such a great assortment of music that kept everyone happy and dancing all night, from Elvis to Oasis, everyone was on their feet, with a glass of wine in hand, celebrating our wedding.
It truly was the most amazing day, filled with love and all of our bestest friends and family. The day was perfect from start to finish and there is nothing we would change (except for turning back time and going back to do it all over again)!
I enjoyed planning our wedding and the creative design side so much that since the wedding I have set up my own wedding planning and styling business, P.Dotties. Planning our wedding was a passion of mine for many years and I didn’t want it to stop after we got married. Getting married and having a beautiful wedding, no matter how big or small is such a wonderful thing and my ambition is to be a part of people’s special days and make it amazing for them!
We would like to thank everyone that had input in our wedding and made the day, our best ever day!