In the Joe Wright film production of Pride and Prejudice, Chatsworth House was used as Pemberley, the residence of old sexy face himself… Mr. Darcy.
It is also widely believed that Jane Austen actually based her idea of Pemberley on Chatsworth House as she wrote the novel while in Bakewell, just down the road.
“The eye was instantly caught by Pemberley House, situated on the opposite side of the valley into which the road into some abruptness wound.”
“It was a large, handsome, stone building standing well on rising ground, and backed by a ridge of high woody hills; and in front, a stream of some natural importance was swelled into greater, but without any artificial appearance. Its banks were neither formal, nor falsely adorned.”
Sounds swanky doesn’t it… And if it’s good enough for Austen then it’s good enough for RMW And it certainly looks amazing in these images of Vicky and Chris’s big day… The subtle pink colour scheme and unobtrusive contemporary styling touches really let the fairytale setting shine.
Vicky The Bride: Our wedding was on 18/8/2012 at St Peter’s Church, Edensor and Chatsworth House. We picked this particular date because the number 8 has a very special meaning for the Chinese. There is a visual resemblance between two eights, “88” and the Chinese character 囍, which is commonly used in a Chinese wedding, meaning double happiness.
Originally we were going to have our wedding in London – where Chris and I and most of our friends live, but due to Chris’s dad’s ill health, he was unable to travel. Knowing most of our friends wouldn’t mind travelling up to the beautiful Peak District, we’ve decided to bring our wedding closer to Chris’s parents so that we could all celebrate together. The church we married in is in a beautiful cute little village across the road from Chatsworth House. I felt very privileged to be able to host our wedding in this magnificent location!
Chris’s dad sadly passed away 4 days after we’ve booked the venue.
Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover
My wedding dress was Pergola by Pronovias. My friend Bridget and I were doing some research on the wedding dresses one day, and we’d been through all the white dresses on Pronovias website and shortlisted what we think were the prettiest dresses suitable for my curvy figure. Bridget was actually the one who picked “the” dress but I wasn’t convinced at the beginning. I tried over 15 dresses during the hunt. The Pergola was the last dress I tried on. When I looked up at myself in the mirror with it on, I knew it was the dress I am going to marry Chris in. Like many say, you can’t judge a book by its cover, but in my case, you can’t judge a dress until you try it on! The top part of the dress consisted of delicate net fabric, which created a great silhouette to the body. The bottom half of the dress is made with a lovely French lace detail and a train that is not too long.
I’ve researched a lot on headpieces, I wanted a statement piece but I did not want to have something that everyone had already seen. Hence I had my headpiece made to order in Hong Kong. The cathedral veil was from a friend of my sisters’ shop in HK. I wasn’t sure about it at first, but the lace detail on the veil matched exceptionally well with the lace on my dress. Both my necklace and bracelet on the day were from Heavenly Necklaces where Kate Middleton bought her earrings for the Diamond Jubliee weekend. On the day, I also wore a lovely Gucci Double G Heart silver bracelet, which was a wedding gift from Chris.
I had two pair of shoes on the day. The shoes which I wore for most of the day were a pair of dazzling crystal encrusted peep toes boots. They were stunning and ever so sparkly! It was love at first sight and I wouldn’t want to wear any other shoes to walk down the aisle on the most special day of my life. I then changed into my “I will…” Converse for the evening. Every girl needs a pair of flats! Mine just happened to have the perfect message already printed on them. I was lucky enough to have found both pairs of shoes on my travels to HK half a year prior the wedding.
I know a lot of brides decided to do their own make-up on the day. I spoke to a few friends and we agreed that I should be pampered, so I treated myself a little on my wedding day. I found Julia at ChicBrides, who was fabulous from when we first met for the trial. She was knowledgeable and compassionate. She recommended an air-brushing technique to create a flawless look, not only was it flawless, but it also lasted all day!
For the bouquets, button holes and our flower arrangement we picked the most romantic flowers of all – roses in a vintage pale pink complimented with contorted willow, silver foliage and daisy. I absolutely adored my bouquet, the floral combination worked really well and was so unique. I came across Tineke Floral Designs in a Derbyshire local wedding magazine and decided to meet up with Kerry on a rainy Sunday. Chris and I were won over by her passion and eye for detail. She produced some truly mind blowing centre pieces at our wedding. The Tineke team was extremely helpful and willing to go the extra mile to meet our requests. We requested a specific type of vase which was not in their current selection, Kerry kindly agreed to invest in them, it just proves that nothing is too much trouble when it come to their customers.
The groomsmen attire were hired from the famous Buckleigh of London where a lot of royals and heads of state hire their morning suits. We chose a traditional black tail jacket, accompanied with a grey waistcoat and a Pink tie to go with the colour theme of the wedding. I decided to let the bridesmaids choose whatever style of dresses they would feel most comfortable in. Not feeling like themselves would be the last thing I would want. The dresses were tailor-made in HK.
Chris’s morning suit was hired from Buckleigh of London, with a different shade of waistcoat and a light pink silk tie from Harrods. As a wedding gift, I bought Chris a pair of white cufflinks from Gieves and Hawkes. Chris looked dashing on the day and I felt so proud to be marrying the man of my dreams!
Rock My Wedding
The Photographer was the one-thing which we did not want to skimp on. Knowing that the photos are the most important memory that we will look at over and over again. I found Christian Ward Photography one day when I was doing my daily reading on RMW. I saw a website banner which style I really liked from the lighting to the colour composition. I decided to click on it and find out more. I looked through Christian and Erica’s portfolio and thought to myself, “this is exactly what I want for my wedding”. I went to the contact page of their website only to find out that they are based in the same town that Chris is from – Chesterfield, I thought this is FATE! I called Chris immediately and urged him to have a look at the website and give them a call to book an appointment. After the meeting, we immediately thought Christian and Erica were the perfect couple to capture the special moments of our big day. They were extremely talented and professional. They blended in among our guests and were able to capture moments that we wouldn’t have known otherwise.
Caaaaake!!! Mmmmmm! Our cake was inspired by the amazing Peggy Porschen’s cakes. I wanted something that was simple yet elegant. Our 3-tier cake was created by the just as amazing LoveCandyCakes. It had pretty piping details and was finished with the same pink roses from our floral arrangement. We decided to go with 3 different flavoured cakes – Red velvet (mmmm… cremecheese icing!), white chocolate and raspberry sponge cake and carrot cake.
In Da House
We had Silver Strings play classical music at the church, followed by more current tunes at the drink reception, as we wanted to create a relaxing atmosphere on the day. For the evening entertainment, we had Craig from 1DJ1.co.uk in da house to bring the roof down (literally). Craig was awesome, he brought with him a smoke machine and laser lighting to my surprise. He was very good at reading the dance floor and determined which songs to play to keep everyone busting their moves. All our guests had a fantastic night dancing away. (Even Chris’s mum got on the dance floor!)
It Could Be You
We danced to Joe Cocker’s “You are so beautiful”. Chris introduced me to this song when we first met 10 years ago. I fell in love with the song and Chris at the same time, so it brings back sweet memories. This is OUR song, hence it was a natural decision to use that for our first dance.
We bought our guest a lottery ticket, which was drawn that evening on our wedding day. I printed stickers from MOO.com to stick on the front of each envelope with our logo and the words “Lucky in love”. I must say, the pink lottery tickets coincidently go perfectly with our theme colours as well! We know that some of our lucky guests won money!
Smooth & To Schedule
I was lucky to have Carmen from Carmen Weddings help me with the on-the-day organisation. I can plan everything as perfect as possible beforehand but on the day I needed Carmen who ensured that everything was running smoothly and on schedule, on top of that she made sure the décor was how I envisaged and more! Her knowledge of Chinese weddings was valuable; she guided us through our traditional Chinese wedding tea ceremony.
My superwoman mother kindly sewed a 15m long bunting going across the entrance of the church and at the reception she sewed bunting which said “Love is sweet” to go behind the sweetie table. The sweetie table was filled with flowers, sweets and macarons (which were gone within 10 mins). We have also lit a candle in memory of our loved one who were no longer with us (including Chris’s Dad, Chris’s Great Aunt and my Granddad). Next to this, we had a table with our guestbook, which also displayed our parents wedding photos and our baby photos. For a vintage touch, we have placed a birdcage for card collection. At dusk, we lit some floating candles in the fountain as well as tea lights around the courtyard.
The Hunting Tower
Not like most brides who stay at home the night before and prepare for their big day, I was lucky enough to stay in one of the most extravagant locations within the Chatsworth estate – The Hunting Tower. Prince William has apparently stayed in the tower during his two weeks visit in the area 10 years previously.
Every wedding is unique for every bride. As I am a designer, it was like a very personal design project. I designed and made all the stationery myself including Invites, order of service, vintage key place-cards, including little details like straw flags and sweet jar labels. It has been fun, yet at time stressful planning my wedding. But in the end, when you see your guests enjoying themselves, it makes it all worthwhile. Besides, it was a rare opportunity to spend, without having to justify, because I can always use the excuse “I’m only doing it once”!
Venue Chatsworth House
Hire Buckleigh of London
Photography Christian Ward Photography
Quartet Silver Strings
Planner Carmen Weddings
Flowers Tineke Floral Designs
Stunning venue, beautiful dress, classically elegant florals and a kick-ass party. Job done. Big sexy tick from team RMW for this one.