As I write this, I can hear fireworks banging and whizzing about all over the city signalling it’s time, once again, to wrap up warm and watch the night sky spark with colour, as the air fills with wood smoke. I love this time of year!
Before you make the pilgrimage to watch the fireworks, take the time to enjoy this morning’s beautiful wedding. Today’s globetrotting couple met and fell in love in Cambodia, got engaged in India, and said ‘I do’ in Somerset! Inspired by their love of travel, our bride and groom tied the knot in an English country wedding filled with subtle nods to India. Laura and Jack wed earlier this year, on the 27th June, at Almonry Barn in Muchelney, Somerset, a 12th century wedding venue believed to be the oldest of its kind in England.
Photography by Philippa James
“We wanted to have a relaxed day with a touch of class and we fell in love with Almonry Barn as soon as we saw it. When planning the wedding we were influenced by our mutual love of travel and in particular, India where we got engaged. For example, the wedding party outfits included a shade of bright orange often associated with India, our favours were tea from the area where Jack proposed and we had a ‘henna cake’.”
Laura purchased her elegant Jesús Peiró gown from award winning London boutique, Blackburn Bridal. You can find Blackburn Bridal listed in our recently launched wedding directory, Little Book for Brides. If you are searching for a wedding supplier I highly recommend taking a peek at this beautifully curated resource!
“I loved the classic elegance of my gown and (of course!) the sparkly belt! Everyone told me I would know as soon as I found ‘The One’ but It wasn’t until I realised that none of the dresses I tried on afterwards compared that I knew I’d found my dress. I purchased my gown from the lovely Blackburn BridaI, the best boutique l visited during my search. The proprietor, Russell, is a bit of a legend and they have a gorgeous range of gowns including some he has designed himself.”
Blackburn Bridal and a fabulous pair of jewel encrusted heels from Untold via House of Fraser.
Laura found her vintage headpiece in a little shop in Lyme Regis, Dorset, and accessorised with a bracelet from Links of London and a pair of vintage earrings which were a gift from her mum.
“My sister, Emily, agreed to do my makeup on the condition I bought some decent product! She did a brilliant job. My hair was styled by Becky from Combers in Taunton.”
Jack and Laura’s beautiful, bright flowers were arranged by Cottage Flowers in Ilminister.
“We used orange and blue flowers to reflect our colour scheme as well as some green and white to soften the arrangements. Our florist was incredibly patient and dedicated and managed to create beautiful pieces based on some pictures we produced from Pinterest and our very vague instructions (neither of us knew names of flowers we liked).”
Laura’s bridesmaid (sister Emily) rocked a beautiful custom made, navy maxi dress from Sarah Jackson Designs. The couple’s niece, Ella, wore a long blue dress also fromSarah Jackson Designs. I love the lace detailing and orange waistband on both gowns.
“We met in Cambodia while I was travelling and Jack was working for an NGO. We discovered that we only lived an hour away from one another in the UK and we fell for each other almost immediately. I carried on travelling but we kept in touch and when Jack returned home I turned up on his parents’ doorstop. The rest is history!
We got engaged during a trip to India. India is a special place for both of us as my grandad was stationed there during the war and Jack’s mum lived there with her parents whilst Jack’s grandad ran a tea plantation. One day, while we ourselves were staying on a tea plantation, Jack produced a beautiful custom designed engagement ring, which he’d been hiding in his money belt for the best part of two weeks. It was an incredibly special and thoughtful proposal. We were engaged for a little over a year before we tied the knot.”
“Our string quartet, Nero, played ‘To build a home’ by The Cinematic Orchestra as I walked up the aisle with my father. Nero are the perfect combination of modern and classical – they will play anything you like but the sound is so rich and traditional in itself.”
“We wrote our own vows which was really special. We kept them a secret from each other which was challenging but made them all the more emotional. Our guests loved our vows, especially the older ones who thought they made the day more personal compared to a traditional church wedding. “
“Jack designed my engagement ring with Bath jewellery designer Christopher Milton Stevens. I absolutely adore it; it is so special and personal.”
“Our photographer, Philippa James, was amazing! We chose Philippa because of her gorgeous relaxed style – we really didn’t want lots of formal, time consuming shots. Philippa took some amazing photos which really capture the feel of our big day. I cannot recommend her enough, she is fabulous, talented and puts everyone at ease.”
Jack and Laura’s wedding breakfast was catered by Strawberry Fields Catering. The couple opted for a Mediterranean style spread, which was served on the tables on a circular raised platform, so that guests could dig in and help themselves. What a great idea!
“Strawberry Fields were fabulous and the food was phenomenal. We had a three course meal which included a lamb main and tarte au citron. We can’t say enough good things about our front of house manager, Amber. Amber looked after all our guests wonderfully with her team and kept our day running like clockwork without us even knowing!”
Jack and Laura decorated Almonry barn simply and elegantly with fairy lights strung from the chandeliers and stunning floral displays accented with blue and orange. To help keep their guests entertained, our couple set up a range of fairground games in the gardens, including a coconut shy and a hoopla station!
“For our favours we sourced tea from the area in India where we got engaged and put it in Kilner jars with a little label. We also put badges from Cancer Research UK on everyone’s place settings, as it is a charity which means a lot to us, our families and many of our friends.”
Our couple’s wonderful cake, decorated with a henna style pattern, was created by Claire of Claire Makes Cakes.
“Again our cake was a nod to India with its henna design. It was beautifully done by the fabulous Claire and tasted amazing. We really struggled to find a good local cake maker and were so pleased when we found Claire, she is a real treasure!”
For their evening entertainment Laura and Jack chose Surrey based soul, funk and Motown band Soul Calibre.
“We both loved the whole day and didn’t want it to end. It’s so hard to choose a favourite part because it was all amazing! If we had to choose, I think we would both say the ceremony itself because it was so intimate and personal. Or perhaps the first dance, which we didn’t practice but was brilliant fun!”
Words of Wedded Wisdom:
“I imagine everyone says this but don’t sweat the small stuff. We really stuck together as a couple throughout and we did everything as a team but it is so easy to get caught up in the hysteria of planning a wedding. You can end up spending hours researching paper thickness or ways to fold napkins but at the end of the day, all that matters is that you both turn up and get married! After someone gave me this advice just before the wedding, it became my mantra every time I felt stressed. We had a perfect day and the way we folded our napkins was never going to change that!
I also advise couples to go on a honeymoon (or at least a mini moon) as soon after the wedding as possible. You need that time to relax and be together after being surrounded!”
Thank you Laura for your sound advice! I am so pleased we decided to go on a minimoon after our own wedding. Getting married is totally incredible but an exhausting business nonetheless!
Thanks so much to our couple for sharing their big day and to Philippa James for the wonderful images. If you’d like to peruse other Indian and India inspired weddings please follow this link. For more beautiful Jesús Peiró brides, please click here.
Have a great weekend and enjoy the fireworks!
Photographer – Philippa James Photography
Venue – Almonry Barn in Muchelney, Somerset
Wedding Dress –Jesús Peiró gown purchased from Blackburn Bridal, London
Veil – Purchased at Blackburn Bridal
Headpiece – Vintage hair slide purchased from a shop in Lyme Regis
Shoes – Untold, purchased at House of Fraser
Accessories – Bracelet from Links of London
Groom – Reiss suit
Bridesmaids – Custom made dress by Sarah Jackson Designs
Flowergirls – Debenhams dresses
Florist – Cottage Flowers, Ilminster
Cake – Claire Makes Cakes
Entertainment – Nero String Quartet + Soul Calibre
Rings – Bespoke engagement ring from Christopher Milton Stevens + wedding bands by E Katz
Catering – Strawberry Field Catering
Stationery – Designed by the couple and printed by Rose Mills
Hair Stylist – Becky from Combers in Taunton
Makeup Artist -Applied by the sister of the bride