Afternoon my loves, I have the prettiest of Isle of Wight weddings to share this afternoon. Just the tonic for all this rain – well, proof at least it needn't ruin your wedding day – and an inspirational read for anyone considering going bespoke with their wedding dress.
Luther and Sophia tied the knot on 18th May 2012, with a ceremony at St Peters Church in Shorwell on the Isle of Wight, followed by a reception at the Isle of Wight wedding venue, North Court Manor. These photographs were submitted by their photographer Jason Mark Harris.
I simply adore Sophie's dress, the design of which takes inspiration from both the 1920s, wit it's beautiful lace panelling detail, and 1930's, with those lovely lace cap-seeves…
"My dress was from a lovely lady called Jane Bourvis. She’s based on Golbourne Road in Notting Hill. She’s fantastic and eccentric and creates the most beautiful dresses from antique lace. Nothing is the shop is the same and all handmade by her, she has an incredible eye.
I knew that I didn’t want an off the peg dress, I wanted something original and not white! I went in the shop more for a browse with a friend – it’s not a traditional wedding dress shop as she sells lots of other antique items and dresses too so I wasn’t expecting to find anything. Jane was half way through making a dress and asked if I wanted to have a look…"
Love My Dress Wedding Blog – Photography Copyright (c) 2012, Jason Mark Harris
Lovely wedding day stationery by Depot Designers…
"All the stationery was done by my new brother in law who is a graphic designer; wedding stationery isn’t his normal type of work but he did an incredible job, our invite was A4 size and made to look like a cover of a play sheet, Luther and I being the starts of the show, it was all very fun!"
"I fell in love with the lace of my dress more than anything and snapped it up there and then much to my surprise as it wasn’t even a real dress at this point. Over the months I went back and we added on lace where we felt we needed it. It’s actually two different parts a top section and an antique skirt which created the train and is made up of lots of pieces of different lace from different eras. I liked the idea that parts of the dress had already been part of other weddings…"
"We knew we wanted to make all the table flowers and flower displays around Northcourt from my mums garden as she has so many, so we collected old copper pots from Ebay and Mum and I walked around the garden the day before and collected and arranged them ourselves. We knew that the flowers weren’t going to be suitable for the bouquets and button holes so we used a fantastic florist Nic from Flowers by Nic on the Isle of Wight.
We told her we wanted very natural and seasonal flowers, we told her the types of colours we liked and she did the rest. It was very stress free and easy with her!"
"I knew what colour I wanted for the bridesmaids early one, a dusty pink but I could find anything that would suit them all so I thought I’d have a go at making them myself, I bought the fabric from Shepherds bush market and bought the different patterns online. I wanted something that would flatter them all individually so each wore a different style dress.
I opened up the dress patterns and gave up quite quickly as I knew I was facing a mountain of work! I found a wonderful girl called Ivy online who is studying at fashion school in London, she made them all up for me with the patterns I gave her. She was brilliant!
Our florist 'Flowers by Nic" made beautiful fresh flower pins for the bridesmaid’s hair that matched the bouquets..."
"I had in mind what I wanted for my headpiece from the start but I couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for as I wanted an antiquey gold rather than silver. I also wanted something individual so I made it in the evenings when Luth wasn’t home, it was perfect and made up from beautiful beads and car boot finds!"
"My shoes were from Kurt Geiger. I’d worn them only once before but thought they went so well with the dress I thought I’d use them for my wedding day. My mum bought me the beautiful shoe clips to go on the front- they were also from Jane Bourvis's shop…"
"I’m a bric a brac, charity shop and carboot junkie so knew that the wedding was a perfect opportunity to collect things; we served all the wine in old decanters, which were collected by myself and my mother in law all costing a few pounds each at most and looked beautiful, everyone loved the idea of having their own decanter of wine for the day.
The waitresses topped them up when they were empty. We sewed together doilies and made long table runners for our banqueting tables and as mum is a caterer we used all her beautiful real silver cutlery. We also made all the signs to direct people to the church and put up white bunting the whole path. We labelled up everyone’s rooms and left them individual message and I drew the table plan…"
"Luther's suit was from Pal Zileri and the waistcoat from Hackett. I made his wedding tie so it would match the bridesmaid dresses. We couldn’t find any that would go! I embroidered it with the date of our wedding on the back and ‘made by Sophia’ He loved it..."
"Luther proposed to me just days after a friends wedding in South Africa, I’d caught the bouquet but his face dropped when I did so I didn’t go on about it much! It was just him and me in a tree house in Knysna along the garden route. It was perfect, he presented me with a gorgeous ring that he had been designing for the last few months and I couldn’t have wished for anymore.
We turned our wedding into a wedding weekend. We knew that we didn’t want it all over in a day especially as we had so many people coming from abroad, so most people arrived on the Thursday night and we had dinner at the pub, the next day was the wedding and following that we had a big hog roast which ended up turning into a 12 hour party/rave!- everyone was able to let go and enjoy themselves that night- including us!"
"My wonderful friend Felicity and bridesmaid Carly made and decorated the cake. It was a carrot cake and covered in the same flowers for the bouquets. They used to work in a cake shop so made sense for them to do it and it was delicious…"
"We knew we wanted to get married on the Isle of Wight . Although we live in London, its still where I consider home and we definitely wanted to be in the countryside. We saw a few venues but nothing was quite right for our wedding weekend (we turned it into a three night affair, why not!), then we visited North Court- it has so much charm and the grounds are stunning. It’s in a lovely village with a church and a pub so had everything we needed and a place we could take over for the weekend. We hired the whole house and 37 of our guests stayed there too, it was a blast.
"We knew we wanted something relaxed but beautiful, the setting itself dictated a lot of the styling of the day and we didn’t want to take away from that.
We’re both English and both grew up in and around the countryside so wanted something to reflect that as well. We didn’t want anything over the top but still wanted to show our creative sides…."
"We gave all the women individual bracelets hung in test tubes that we bought off ebay as favours, and we gave the men aged Glenfarclas whiskey – we knew they wouldn’t want anything that they had to keep!"
"I made the veil with my sister on my kitchen floor! I didn’t want to spend a fortune and couldn’t find anything to match the colour of my dress so I thought the best way was to try myself and it was just what I wanted…"
"We knew how important a photographer was but we also wanted someone that was local. We went to see a few photographers but there wasn’t anyone that we got on with and could speak openly about what we liked other than Jason.
We met him a few times before the wedding and he came to the rehearsal too, he was so easy to speak to and to have around and made us feel so comfortable in front of the camera which we thought was going to be very awkward. We were really able to talk to him and tell him what we wanted, in the end we didn’t have to mention what we wanted at all, he did it perfectly! He’s a natural light photographer that also was from the Isle of Wight..."
"I had in mind what I wanted for my headpiece from the start but I couldn’t find exactly what I was looking for as I wanted an antiquey gold rather than silver. I also wanted something individual so I made it in the evenings when Luth wasn’t home, it was perfect and made up from beautiful beads and car boot finds!
I bought some very simple stud earrings from John Lewis as I thought the lace on the dress and headpiece was enough and I made a bracelet to match my headpiece…"
"My Dad gave me away – I walked down to Wagners Bridal Chorus- we wanted the ceremony to be fairly traditional. Our friend James played the Organ for us, he’s a great pianist and learns all the music rather than playing from song sheet, he played the funniest songs whist everyone was coming in to the church which really got everyone going and then during the signing of the register he played an upbeat version of Skinny Love by Bon Iver – Its one of mine and Luther songs. He really is amazing!"
"My Mother is a caterer so she supplied the food. It was an obvious choice! We had local food sourced from the Isle of Wight. She was obviously not in a position to cook on the day so had the help of a chef. We kept her busy as she did the evening food and the food for the next day as well, we cant thank her enough as it was delicious…"
"Out first dance was ‘You send me’ by Aretha Franklin. Its such a lovely song and we dance to it in our kitchen at home.
We have been to a few weddings with bad DJ’s and knew how important the music was, everyone we wanted was already booked up so we thought the only way to get what we wanted was to make the play-list ourselves and hire a sound system. All our guests were DJ’s by the end of the night, it was great! We knew that there was no way we could not have some live music so we had a great guy called Jules Nelson who played his guitar during canapés and up until the first dance- he sounded like a full band but was just him!"
Words of Wedded Wisdom…
"Do what you feel most comfortable with, it’s so easy to get caught up in this wedding whirlwind and you could easily get carried away. All our guests said that our wedding weekend was a complete reflection of Luth and I as people which is what we wanted.
We didn’t want it formal just because it was a wedding so don’t do anything the way you think you should, do it the way you both want to do it. Get as much help from your friends and family as possible, it fun to do it with them!
On the day relax and have your best friends around you and really take in the ceremony- it’s such a special moment when you take those vows. If things go wrong it doesn’t matter. Loads went wrong on our day, not that anyone noticed!"
Huge congratulations Luther and Sophia for your absolutely beautiful day, and for so willingly sharing all your creative and stylish ideas with my readers. Big thanks to to Photographer Jason Mark Harris.
You can see more Isle of Wight weddings her. I'd love to know if there are any Isle of Wight brides reading this, or if any other reader has used or plans to use the services of bespoke London wedding dress designer, Jane Bourvis? Oh, and brides worried about rain on their wedding day – check out these real weddings for proof that your day will be as fabulous even if it pours down
Much love all,
Photographer – Jason Mark Harris
Venue – Isle of Wight wedding venue, North Court Manor.
Brides dress – Jane Bourvis
Brides veil – made by the bride
Brides shoes – Kurt Geiger
Groom – suite Pal Zileri and by Hackett
Bridesmaids – Pattern designed by the bride, made up by a seamstress
Flowers – Flowers by Nic on the Isle of Wight
Cake – Brides friend
Catering – Mandibles Catering
Hair Stylist/Makeup Artist – Camilla Hewitt
Entertainment – The Impressive Pianist
Wedding stationery – Depot Designers