Hello my loves, there is so much a-buzz on social media right now for the Perfect Wedding Magazine Awards – wish us luck! We’re up for ‘best wedding blog’ and whilst I can’t personally attend the awards in London tonight, our lovely Tamryn will be representing team Love My Dress. So, keep you fingers crossed!
This afternoon’s wedding was submitted by the uber-talented Claudia Rose Carter, whose photography I always find so atmospheric and full of emotion. These photographs from the wedding of Katie and Nathan are no different and capture the essence of a very special day, and indeed date just for two.
Katie who has her own style consultancy business, married Lawyer Nathan on 27th September. Katie came up with the concept of the wedding being the ultimate date for two in the couple’s favourite city and Nathan planned the day, fitting in as much as possible that the pair love about London. This included a ceremony at Islington Town Hall, canapé at Broadway Market a wedding breakfast at Berners Tavern, jazz/swing and cocktails at Cecil’s – a pop up 1920s Shanghai converted warehouse on London Bridge – and then cake at The Soho Hotel. What an incredibly delicious flavour of the city all in one beautifully stylish and love-filled day…
“I presented the idea to Nathan of ‘what if we got married, just the two of us?’. We had been back and forth on different wedding ideas ranging from 80 people to 50 people, to 30 people and nothing felt right. There were some politics surrounding the wedding and it completely freaked me out. It was almost like having a violent reaction about getting married in front of such a big bunch of people. Because of this, we took the brave decision to be selfish and have the day be solely about us – just as it is supposed to be.”
Photography Copyright (c) 2014, Claudia Rose Carter
“We love the mix of old and new, different people, and the buzz about London. We planned the ultimate date taking in pretty Islington in North London, the life and buzz of Broadway Market in East London, the glamour of Berners Tavern and Soho Hotel in West London and the dead cool Cecil’s at London Bridge in South East London. It was like the ultimate date and very romantic.”
“I really wanted a vintage dress but couldn’t afford the price tag of a dress. I used to work for Karen Millen, so I put my discount to good use! I loved the rose gold colour of the dress as it complimented the colour of my rings. The French lace is simply stunning and very light compared to other lace dresses. There is the right amount of detailed work on the dress with the beads. The high Victorian-style neck was very different for me as a normally go for something lower with having a reasonable chest!
However I loved the keyhole detail at the back and I could still wear a bra. The fit of the dress was amazing, it clung to my best bits (boobs and waist) and skimmed over the not so good (my legs!). I originally had a dress designed from a bridal shop where I grew up which was an amazing 1950s short white dress, however once I put my dress on, I knew that this was the one I wanted to get married to Nathan in. I felt glamorous, confident, quirky and above all me. I knew I wanted to spend the day in this beautiful dress.”
“My second dress for the evening was a little harder to decide on. With the evening being 1920s inspired, I couldn’t decide on whether to do a nod to the era or go all out with the flapper style. I thought about what 1920s means to me, flappers, freedom for women and Coco Chanel who was one of my idols.
With this in mind my evening ensemble was a nod to a modern day Coco. A drop waisted cream pleated skirt dress from Coast.”
“Our photographer was Claudia Rose Carter – she was absolutely amazing. We couldn’t have asked for better photographs – they speak for themselves. Also, it was like we were with an old friend not someone we barely knew. We have had so many wonderful comments on the artistry of the photos.”
Lorraine Allinson, our florist, when we walked past a stall she was holding in South West London where we live – I fell in love with her style of flowers and the idea of having barley in it. I wanted them to be fuss free, natural and vintage looking. I wanted my flowers to look like I had been up early walking through the fields and hand picked them myself. The winning formula to the bouquet was the wheat – very unusual. The smell from all the herbs in the bouquet was amazing! I remember thinking, when I die I want to remember this smell – so comforting and so joyful.”
“We produced an order of the day to give my mum who was looking after max and so we could have a point of reference so we knew when to be where during the day! We did this at Optimal Print.”
“We met six years ago in a bar in Manchester where I grew up. Nathan was in Manchester visiting old university friends and I had just returned from a holiday in the Maldives with my mum, as my father had just died. I was sworn off men and had had enough! In Nathan’s words ‘she was tanned and looking hot, I remember thinking, ‘this one looks a little different!’.
Nathan approached me at the bar where I was buying a cosmopolitan and having politely rebuffed his initial advance, within half an hour, we were both holding hands and chatting away. We parted ways at the end of the evening, with the promise to meet up in London the following week while I was down seeing friends. Needless to say, I played hard to get and cancelled subsequent date arrangements! However, there was something about Nathan that I had never felt before. It was almost as if my dad had sent Nathan to me.”
“After the first visit to London we took it in turns to travel to see each other every other week. Within six months, I left everything I knew and loved to start a new beginning and life with Nathan in London. It was a risky move but one that I’ve honestly never regretted. Four years later we had baby Max, our bundle of joy!
On Valentine’s day 2013 Nathan said ‘so shall we get hitched?!’ Over a four course breakfast including heart-shaped pancakes and a beautiful ring. And that was it!”
“As a make up artist and spa therapist I did my makeup etc myself. My hair was tweaked into perfection my dear friend Carrie Muir.”
“I really wanted to wear a rose fragrance to match my wedding Bouquet so I wore Kiehl’s Patchouli and Fresh Rose. I tried many different scents on prior to selecting this one! I wanted to be able to light a rose candle in 19 years and be able to remember the scent. I also wanted a perfume that was quite subtle in the day as I wanted to layer the scent for the evening with my favourite Amber by serge Luton. pretty, vintage and bridal for the day and make it more moody and sensual for the 1920s evening of jazz.”
“My hair accessory was vintage and sourced from a market outside of London. It was a gold comb with pearls and pearl flowers it had a trail that tapered at the end. I wanted something that was low key but made a statement in its own right and complimented the whole look and would transcend from day to evening. Also that the angle would offset my cheek bones!”
“I walked into the room on my own and was treated to a big smile from Nathan waiting for me. We didn’t have any music, we didn’t want fuss or cheese – we just wanted to get married.”
“Nathan was completely head to toe in Paul Smith, including his underwear! People came upto him in the day asking him wear he purchased his shoes! His ditty floral bow tie was from an amazing website called Mrs Bow tie – they have an array of fabulous cool patterns.”
“We choose to have the simple ceremony and we had our own vows. We each wrote our vows to each other. We both followed the structure of when we first met, what we mean to each other, what we have been through and what we promise to do in our future. I said to Nathan ‘you are the caffeine in my coffee, the egg in my eggy bread and the milk in my tea’. They were silly but personal, loving yet serious. Nathan said that with me, he had grown into a man.”
The couple had the following beautiful words read out during their ceremony. The reading was chosen for the imagery it portrays and the sentiment of love.
‘I Am Love – Unknown
Some say I can fly on the wind, yet I haven’t any wings. Some have found me floating on the open sea, yet I cannot swim. Some have felt my warmth on cold nights, yet I have no flame. And though you cannot see me, I lay between two lovers at the hearth of fireplaces. I am the twinkle in your child’s eyes. I am hidden in the lines of your mother’s face. And yet… Some say I am stronger than steel, yet I am as fragile as a tear. Some have never searched for me, yet I am around them always. Some say I die with loss, yet I am endless. And though you cannot hear me, I dance on the laughter of children. I am woven into the whispers of passion. I am in the blessings of Grandmothers. I embrace the cries of newborn babies. And yet… Some say I am a flower, yet I am also the seed. Some have little faith in me, yet I will always believe in them. Some say I cannot cure the ill, yet I nourish the soul. And though you cannot touch me, I am the gentle hand of the kind. I am the fingertips that caress your cheek at night. I am the hug of a child. I am love.’
“Both of us feel the ceremony was a favourite part as it was so moving just being the two of us and so private. Closely followed by Broadway Market – the atmosphere was amazing!”
“We used black cabs the whole day! Oh and an emergency Addison Lee cab, when my booked cab didn’t turn up to take me to The town hall.”
“I accessorised my evening dress with a vintage long single stand of pearls, a modern day large pearl Chanel bracelet and off white shoe boots from Next of all places but look very like ‘Milano Blahnik’ shoes. I dusted off my burgundy faux fur vintage short fur. To finish the glamour factor and to keep the 1920s theme, I applied a deep plum lipstick from Chanel.
Both my wedding and engagement rings are from Alex Monroe. My engagement ring is a pink emerald with diamonds. I didn’t want anything ordinary! I also have an eternity ring that is a rose gold leaf with diamonds. The leaf signifies autumn, my favourite season, the season Nathan and I met and married and the season Max was born.
I kept everything else jewellery wise simple, just a Christmas gift from my mum many years ago of diamond earrings. My fur stole is vintage sourced a few years ago from Manchester. I really wanted to find a feather bag that wasn’t extortionately priced however, while looking I fell in love with my pearl bag from Coast of all places! It was classy, totally reusable in the future and very Coco Chanel for my evening outfit. The only draw-back was Claudia our photographer had to keep some of my bits and bobs in her bag as mine was too small!”
“Our first dance was in our suite at Soho Hotel – we cranked up the house music and cracked open another bottle of champagne. Hence the photos of us dancing in the windows!”
“We chose to celebrate at Cecil’s because we love jazz and house music! We thought house might be a bit much but jazz would be perfect. We looked for ages to find something different, but eventually Nathan found this speakeasy type cocktail bar in a warehouse in London Bridge playing jazz and swing music out of the basement, and designed to look like Shanghai in the 1920s! There was a strict 1920s dress code, it was perfect!
By the time we got there we were so drunk and getting late night munchies was fun. Amazing cocktails and everyone was lovely to us there as they had been all day! We danced the night away.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom
“It is a very stressful time. Take as much stress away from the wedding as you can to avoid turning into Bridzilla! Too much stress will make you poorly and you won’t enjoy your day! I also think it is key to stay true to what both of you want for the day and what you want to take away from the joining together. For me, going against what I truly wanted and what I felt comfortable with made me feel very uneasy. Instead we stayed true to being creative, fun, imaginative, romantic and just a little bit glamorous. Very Katie and Nathan :)”
How wonderful, just how absolutely wonderful, and such beautiful, atmospheric photography once again from the inimitable Claudia Rose Carter. Huge congratulations Katie and Nathan on your most beautiful elopement.
Click here to explore more elopements on Love My Dress. You can also see more work by photographer Claudia Rose Carter here on Love My Dress – including the wedding of our Lovette/blogging bride, Madeleine.
Photographer – Claudia Rose Carter
Venue – Islington Town Hall + Broadway Market + Berners Tavern + Cecil’s + The Soho Hotel
Wedding Stylist – Katie Jenson-Hull
Wedding Dress – Karen Millen
Shoes – Karen Millen
Bride’s Scent/perfume – Kiehl’s Patchouli and Fresh Rose
Groom – Paul Smith
Florist – Lorraine Allinson
Rings – Alex Monroe
Hair Stylist – Carrie Muir