Lawyers Catherine and George tied the knot on 11th June this year with a beautiful ceremony at St Mary The Boltons Church in Chelsea, followed by an intimate reception at The Cadogan Hotel.
The couple wanted a classic wedding that mixed traditional and contemporary elements. Catherine loves the Victorian and Edwardian eras and sought a bridal look inspired by the heroine’s of Victorian gothic novels – which she achieved through her beautiful lace gown by Love My Dress recommended supplier, Katya Katya London and her gorgeous finger wave / Marcel wave hair style.
Location & Venue
We chose this pretty Victorian church (aside from the religious element, which was important to us) because we lived nearby for many years and always found the lovely garden square setting a haven of tranquility, particularly during long walks in the depths of lockdown.
Although it is one of London’s most upmarket addresses, it also has a very active local community based around the church. The church also has a fascinating history, being damaged extensively by bombs during World War II.
Bridal Beauty, Shoes & Accessories
I hired Pam Wrigley of Wedding Makeup & Hair. I’m always fretting about my thin hair but was blown away with what Pam achieved. I loved my loose chignon bun with finger wave at the front, which I took down in the evening so I had bouncy curls for the dinner and dancing. Pam was also so much fun to spend the morning of my wedding with.
My scent was Hermes – Un Jardin Sur Le Nil, a perfume George has gifted to me on many occasions and which I love.
I wore George’s grandmother’s pearls – a beautiful bracelet and set of earrings. I also wore George’s grandmother’s pearls – a beautiful bracelet and set of earrings. George wore his grandfather’s gold cufflinks. My vintage style shoes were from Rachel Simpson.
I wore a dress by Katya Katya London – bought from their boutique in Chelsea (a five minute walk from the church we got married in). It is a really beautiful boutique with staff who will do anything to help make your wedding dress dreams come true.
When I ordered my dress they gave me some seed paper to plant in my garden, which has since grown into some lovely flowers – whenever I see the flowers I’m reminded of how special I felt in my dress! I couldn’t recommend Katya Katya highly enough.
I also wore a simple double tier veil from Katya Katya. I wore it down over my face as I walked up the aisle and my dad lifted it when we reached the altar.
How They Met
We met in a London pub in 2014. I was in a pub with a friend when she saw George (who she knew) walk by outside – she dashed out and made him to come in to meet her friend (me).
We got engaged in Florence at Villa San Michele in August 2020. We were eating dinner in the hotel’s ‘Lovers’ Corner’, where we had spectacular views over the whole of Florence, when George got down on one knee.
George wore classic morning dress by Hackett, a butter yellow waistcoat by Sirplus, a powder blue shirt from Turnbull and Asser, his favourite Hermes tie (red with birds and aeroplanes) and shoes from Crockett and Jones.
His grandfather’s gold cufflinks and favourite Hermes watch.
Mick, our photographer of The Kensington Photographer, was absolutely faultless. He achieved everything I could have hoped for and more with our photographs – he was full of ideas and captured so many special moments beautifully.
He was dedicated all day to getting the perfect shot, while at the same time he was unobtrusive and sensitive to our wishes. I couldn’t recommend highly enough!
We loved the day from start to finish. I loved spending some special time with my parents and bridesmaid before the ceremony. I loved standing at the front of the church beside George and exchanging our vows while the organist and choir filled the church with beautiful atmospheric music.
I loved how much fun everyone seemed to be having at every moment and I loved how much everyone mingled exactly as I’d hoped when we’d decided to keep numbers to around 40. I loved the speeches with everyone speaking genuinely and from the heart. It was wonderful to spend such a special time with close family and friends. I will always be grateful to have had such a happy day surrounded by so much love.
For my bouquet, I asked our florist, Wildabout, to create something beautiful that combined Kate and Pippa Middleton’s bouquets. I loved cascading look of the hyacinth and the lily of the valley in Kate’s bouquet and the dark green English foliage, and I loved the blush touches in Pippa’s. I was keen to incorporate flowers with special meaning – lily of the valley (happiness) and myrtle (marriage, love) were my particular wants.
I stayed with my parents and other family members at San Domenico House, a 15 minute drive from the church, the night before the wedding. I travelled to the wedding with my dad, mum and bridesmaid in a Rolls Royce Phantom V hired from Premier Carriage.
We transported everyone from the church to reception venue in a classic London double decker hired from Traditional Travel.
Reception at The Cadogan Hotel
The place we got engaged in Florence, Villa San Michele, is owned by a luxury company called Belmond and we knew we wanted to stick with them for the wedding itself, if possible.
Their London hotel is The Cadogan, which is a stylish mix of tradition and modern artsy decor and which we visit often. Again it has a fascinating history in that it is the hotel were Oscar Wilde was famously arrested (you can still hire the very room) and also is partly the former home of Lillie Langtry, Edwardian socialite and mistress to King Edward VII.
I decided to have just one bridesmaid so let her choose her dress – she chose a lacy lilac dress by Frock and Frill, which we thought complemented my dress.
Fashion illustrator, Sarah Smart, was circulating and drew fashion illustrations of guests during our champagne reception, as well as a “setting the scene” picture during the dinner.
Harpist, Laura Marquino, played a mixture of classic and modern harp music during our champagne reception.
Pianist and singer, Robin Phillips, played crooner classics during the evening.
All three were wonderful.
Words of Wedded Wisdom
Be organised in advance to minimise stress on the day, but don’t worry too much about anything as the day will unfold and you won’t even notice any minor deviations from the original plan.
Also, don’t feel pressure to do your wedding in any particular way. Weddings of all shapes and sizes are wonderful occasions – we concluded it was best to do something that best suited us and which I felt we could organise with minimal stress alongside our jobs (in terms of size, style of reception etc).
I don’t think anything could have gone better on the day, but I had worried about things going smoothly beforehand – I really needn’t have.
See more beautiful Katya Katya London bridal gowns
Annabel is the founder of Love My Dress. She has a passion for photography, walking, yoga, nature, and loves to support talented artists and creative businesses. In 2013, she became a published author. Annabel lives in rural North Yorkshire with her husband and business partner Philip, their two daughters Eska and Leanora and menagerie of furry hounds. Annabel supports Philip in the running of the family flower farm at at Moonwind Flowers. She is also co-founder of What About Weddings.