The Olde Bell Wedding Venue

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England Meets India.


I’m feeling more than a little smug this morning because I get to share possibly the best two-day-English-Indian wedding I have EVER seen. That’s right folks, Lyndsey and Kayyor were lucky enough not to have one but TWO big days!

They started their wedding extravaganza with a smaller, intimate traditional English infused civil ceremony at the Olde Bell in Hurley. Filled to the brim with soft pink roses and silver candelabras and a beautiful 1920s drop waist dress, it couldn’t have been more different to their second ‘I Do’ the following day at Hedsor House.

This time, against a back-drop of freshly fallen snow, the two participated in a traditional Hindu ceremony that just oozes colour and energy and excitement. Saris and a Bollywood theme were the order of the day with guests in traditional Indian dress against lavish decor.

Just wait until you see the beautiful flowers on the Mandap. I died and went to heaven. Actually I died over pretty much every single detail of Kayyor and Lyndsey’s two day affair. It looks flipping epic!

A Beautiful Indian and English Fusion Wedding With A Hindu Ceremony At The Olde Bell In Hurley And Hedsor House By Ann-Kathrin Koch Photography._0001

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Let There Be Love.


Mid-week fashion fest alert peeps!! Charlotte got all hot and bothered when she found out that Kuofi, this mornings bride had Sergio Rossi clad tootsies for her big day marrying her beau Matthew. I was all like “what’s this Sergio Rossi fellah?” (said in a mockney accent) and I think I nearly got the sack there and then. Our groom wore Gucci. Phew… I’ve heard of them.

Anyway, once I looked though all the glorious images by Kathryn Edwards The Sergio Rossi fascination started to make sense… In short, the fashion on dispay here is SPECIAL. Shout-out-loud special. The Olde Bell in Hurley did not know what hit it back in October 2012.


Vintage Meets Modern

Kuofi The Bride: The dress was from an Australia designer called Collette Dinnigan.

As I work in the fashion industry, I have always been inspired by vintage looks mixed with modern design. Initially I was hoping to get a vintage wedding dress that was in the 60’s era, but the styles I found were not as I imagined. Then the power of google brought me to Collette’s bridal collection, I booked an appointment and tried this dress on – I knew it was it. LOVE the lace and the slim elegant style.


A Matching Band

I wear hair bands a lot usually, and I wanted to have band on the special day too so I was super pleased to find Jennifer Behr‘s work matched my gown. The hair band again is very simple from Jennifer Behr, this perfectly matched the vintage earrings from my mother.

I wore classic satin nude/dusty rose colour Sergio Rossi peep toe wedge heels. They were an impulse buy and I instinctively knew they would be great to give a vintage yet modern feel.


Betty Draper

I always wanted a very natural look for my wedding day with a classic 60’s hair do, the look was inspired by Betty Draper in Mad Men and the Louis Vuitton campaign etc, Sarah at Thorne Brides knew exactly how I wanted and she made me feel so pretty and natural on the day.


Shabby Chic

Peony is my favourite flower, but since the wedding was in October it was too difficult and out of budget to get them so my amazing bridal florist Janine from Green Parlour used a lot of David Austins to create the vintage shabby chic look for me, the smell was so so gorgeous! LOVE the purple flowers mixed with the dusty pink and ivory David Austins.

We didn’t have any colour scheme for the wedding, the dress attire was based on my inspiration – vintage, modern, 60’s, elegant, rustic chic.

We bought the attire for our ushers and bridesmaids as a part of the thank you presents. The Groomsmen were in navy suits from Zara with black bow ties and the maids wore black floor length dresses from twobirds bridesmaid. We wanted them to be able to keep their dresses and suits for future occasions and I thought it would be good to have black and navy colours mixed in with an English country cottage wedding.

Our cutie flower girl was in a pretty little Zara dress, again, I wanted her to look very natural and not in over-the-top children’s wedding outfit.


A Gucci Guy

My lovely husband was in his sharp fitted Gucci suit in grey, he always wanted to have a classic English look and he chose his suit with my help, I thought grey would go well with ushers’ navy suits so that was perfect.


Rock My wedding

We had the amazing Kathryn Edwards as our photographer and we were so so so happy. We found her through my favourite wedding site – Rock My Wedding on their Love Lust List wedding directory and we contacted her immediately.

After a quick meeting with Kathryn we reviewed her portfolio We fell in love with her style and we knew she was the one, especially after our super fun pre wedding shoot, we knew the wedding pictures would be simply beautiful.


Shut the Box

We chose Shutterbox Films to do our videography. We were so, so pleased to find Lee & Dawn, because we wanted to keep our special day recorded but did not want a cheesy wedding film. After looking at clips of their work, we knew they would be the best and the way they edit films made the wedding look so beautiful, I melt!


A Cake Classic

We had our cake queen Ms Olivia Zampi who made amazing cakes for celebrities birthdays, we were so happy she could make a simple English Victoria Sponge for us. Since we chose an English country cottage wedding with all the vintage touches, we thought the cake had to be a simple classic Victoria Sponge.


Simple & Fun

We had pretty fun but simple entertainment, no band as we had my sister playing piano for us throughout the day and in the evening we had Mark at Mighty Fine, the in house DJ from the Olde Bell.

My sister, one of the bridesmaids, played piano for us during guests arrival and during ceremony, it was so special to have her playing the songs we knew when we were little.

Our first dabce was to Let There Be Love by Nat King Cole – we both like Jazz a lot and this song was just made us want to dance.


Our Top 12

We had CDs & personalised napkins as wedding favours. The CDs were all our own DIY, we chose our top 12 favourite songs which meant something for us and burned them to discs then we made the CD jackets ourselves with all personalised artwork and wrapped evertyhing in twine.

We wanted guests to play games and mingle before the dinner and incorporated this into the seating plan and arrangements. As I am originally from Taiwan, I had all our Italian linen napkins embroidered with each guest’s name in Chinese phonetically. We had table place cards in English so our guests were still were able to find where to sit. The napkins were favours for them to take away after the dinner.


Natural & True

We feel our wedding was special is because it was totally us, it was intimate (65 guests), cosy and we didn’t pretend to be anythign we aren’t. It looked so simple but it took a lot of effort to organise our wedding.

My little advice to the bride-to-be is to imagine how you would like your big day to be, but be as natural and true to yourselves as a couple. Your wedding will be naturally beautiful and not contrived. Check all the websites and perhaps like I did – add Rock My Wedding to your favouritea and check daily for inspirations.

Click here & view all images from this wedding

Dress: Collette Dinnigan
Venue: The Olde Bell
Shoes: Sergio Rossi
Hair band: Jennifer Behr
Florals: Green Parlour
Photography: Kathryn Edwards
Maids: twobirds bridesmaid
Cake The Bakery Lounge
Videography: Shutterbox Films
DJ: Mighty Fine

Yeah, what can I say… I think you should all take Kuofi’s advice and add RMW to your favourites RIGHT NOW!

Hope you enjoyed this visual feast, with more labels than you can shake a designer stick at. I Really loved the way Kuofi and Michael mixed high fashion with some realy nice home made DIY touches, and it is always super special to see a Rock My wedding readers big day celebrated on the blog.


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One Fine Summer’s Day.

There are many many things about Sas and Ashley’s laid back and lovely affair at The Old Bell that made me instantly know it was a real Rock My Wedding type of day. The muted colour palette, the beautiful flame-haired firecracker of a bride, the outdoorsy live entertainment, an abundance of laughter and joy….

I could go on.

But I won’t. Instead I’ll just let the perfect moments captured by Pen Mckinley-Rodgers speak for themselves.

Happy Wednesday you gorgeous lot.

Feeling Beautiful

Sarah-Kate Thorne was recommended by the Old Bell who use local businesses wherever possible. We met for a trial session a few weeks before the wedding and she was so funny and talented, I felt really relaxed. On the day she made the whole process of getting ready really fun and I felt so beautiful.

I buy a lot of clothes and jewellery from etsy so that was my starting point. There are hundreds of options at all different prices, from incredibly talented creative people, but you might have to be a bit brave about buying online! I found my dress at Ellana Couture’s etsy store and the old hollywood style just made my belly flip. I emailed Ellana and she was fantastically accommodating and really supportive of the online purchasing process – it was reassuring to know that i was speaking directly to the designer. It took about 10 weeks to make and ship the frock I gave myself an additional month for final adjustments. Busting Diva helped with the final alterations – they were fantastic! Christina even brought treats for our cats Rex & Badger to thank them for ‘helping’!

The Etsy Queen

Once I had decided on the dress, I knew that I wanted a pin for the back of my dress and I found this vintage broach from ZitaJohann on etsy. My earrings from Adesso from one of my best friends who lives in California.My bracelet was by A Wing and a Prayer (couldn’t resist! the name) from Elsie Belle.

I wanted to wear my hair down and i thought a silk flower might work. I found mine at Alaparisienne on etsy. And a little clutch from Black Gypsy Designs.

Relaxed And Informal

I wanted to be comfortable and knew that most of the day would (weather permitting) be spent on grass so I opted for some gold sandals from boden. They were SO comfy and the jewelled straps peeked out from under my long dress. The Boden site seems to have run out of stock but this is the silver pair.

There was no official wedding party, as we wanted to keep the ceremony relaxed and informal. We took only the parts of the ceremony that we liked or were necessary, and discarding anything stuffy. We asked two very close friends to be our witnesses. Ash’s two nieces and two nephews got to choose whatever they wanted to wear – this meant that we had a three year old cowboy policeman on duty throughout the day! My seven best friends wore beautiful outfits of their own choosing. Everyone looked gorgeous!

Antique-Esque Blooms

The Old Bell is a rustic coaching inn with a fantastic summer garden leading to a meadow of wild flowers. We wanted the flowers to reflect that idea and so all of the flowers for the venue were in enamel and pewter jugs – as though they had been picked outside. We had terracotta pots of lavender on the tables outside. I adore roses and so my bouquet was a bunch of antique roses and my two nieces had a little minature bunch of the same. Ash’s buttonhole was of ivory roses with a sprig of eucalyptus. All by Sonning Flowers.

A Triumph In Tweed

Ash was very keen to take advantage of the opportunity to have a suit made! Bookster specialise in tweed fabrics and operate from a converted barn in Ross on Wye. We drove up there for a fitting and Ash decided on a couple of fabrics he liked, settling on a three piece silver fern inspired moss green, with blue check – I eventually had to give him a little hint on the colour of my dress so that he could decide on what to choose.

He wore a silk tie with ivory roses and a blue shirt – finished off with stripy socks and Paul Smith brogues. From the window of my room where I was getting ready i could hear everyone exclaiming over Ash’s suit so I was desparate to sneak a peek but I was banned. I adored his suit and the fox buttons were a smash hit with everyone.

Capturing Us

This was the easiest decision really. Penny & Cam are lovely close friends and we totally trusted them to capture our day. They are just so talented! We both had leaky faces looking at the photo reel – the images are just so perfect. I love the old tones and rich hues – they are like edible paintings. Somehow Pen & Cam managed to capture ‘us’. And I know that when he gets on my last nerve, I will look back on these images and probably forgive him. Because they are just so pretty.

No Need To Compromise

Of our 50 guests around 20 were either vegetarian, vegan or required gluten free – I was a little worried that we would struggle to find a baker that could fit this list of requirements. Charlotte from Restoration Cakes met with us and suggested cupcakes! This was perfect as Ash wanted a strawberries and cream and I was very keen on a chocolate option.

In the end we had both AND a red velvet top tier cake. The strawberries and cream victoria sponge cupcakes with buttercream icing were completely vegan and they were so tasty. Charlotte also provided us with a stunning tiered cake stand and a very flash Vera Wang cake knife, she was so easy and lovely to work with.

A Gorgeous Summers Day

We first heard the Rio Trio (from Party Jazz) play their 30s/40s music about a year ago in Parsons Green. The band played a really cheeky, fun mix of music and their outfits were so daper in boating hats and blazers! Ash approached them while they were on a break and we aksed if they would play at our wedding. They were the perfect accompaniment to a gorgeous summer day, with pimms and canapes – our guests loved them and they are in lots of photos.

An English Country Garden

The Olde Bell has a natural English country garden feel to it that we adored, with a large lawn and flower garden. It provided the perfect setting for the relaxed english garden wedding we wanted.

I hired bunting from bunting queen and we put this up in the garden. The venue had croquet and giant jenga which the kids loved. The day after the wedding most of our family spent the day wandering down to hurley lock for a swim before picnicking on the lawn with us. We were ABSOLUTELY lucky with the weather.

Blog Queen

To brides – do not buy bridal magazines! The internet is your friend. There are some fantastic blogs and websites like Rock My Wedding, rock n roll bride, OMG im getting married – all from real world couples that just want to make a day that was special to them. There is no reason why you have to follow any rules – its what is important to you both that matters.

We wanted everyone to have a lovely relaxed day and a fabulous meal, so we put more of our budget into the food and wine (people are still talking about the lemon posset and shortbread dessert!). We didn’t bother with traditions that didn’t make any sense to us and we tried really hard not to sweat the small stuff.

More links and more information can be found at www.sasmagicalmysterytour.com

Photography – Pen Mckinley-Rodgers

Venue – The Old Bell

Brides Gown – Ellana Couture’s etsy store

Grooms Suit –Bookster

Florist – Sonning Flowers

Cake – Restoration Cakes

And if that hasn’t put a smile on your face then I don’t know what will.

Any red-headed beauties thinking about their florals?… because out of all the W-days I’ve seen you’d be hard pushed to find blooms that better suit a bride and her colouring than these.

And I know it’s October and all but if any of you would like to imagine you are in a summers garden enjoying a glass of pimms then do join me – I’m here dreamin’ the same thing.

Big Summer’s Over But There’s Plenty Of Sunshine On RMW Love

Charlotte xxx

P.S It’s Sas’s birthday today so please leave her your best wishes lovelies 😉