Lexie in Lena Medoyeff for her Laidback East London Wedding With Humble Pie & Pizza

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Lexie and Cyril’s wedding is one of those occasions I absolutely adore preparing a feature for on Love My Dress.

The couple – Lexie is a Film & TV Producer and Cyril is a trainee Vicar – tied the knot on 22nd September 2023 in East London, with a ceremony at Church of St-John-at-Hackney, followed by a reception set within the glorious, light filled hall of St Leonard’s Church in Shoreditch.

The couple’s budget was fairly limited, not that you’d guess, so sensible decisions were made as they planned their wedding; Lexie discovered her gown in a sample sale at the excellent Heart a Flutter Bridal Studio in Hoxton, guests dined on pies and the groomsmen did a pizza run in the evening. Budget was ultimately reserved for the couple’s one absolutely non-negotiable, their photographer, the most excellent Ruth Atkinson, whose work I am continually delighted to be able to share.

This weddings is so much fun, and so incredibly stylish. I adore it and hope that it inspires you too. Enjoy!

Cool bride wearing a Lena Medoyeff bridal gown.

Bridal Beauty & Accessories

If you’re London based and need a hair stylist – use Ashley Lambe – he’s a bloody legend. For makeup, I hired the lovely Jaz Crush.

I wore a blush veil which I found in a random bridal shop in Portsmouth. I didn’t want to pay London prices and I wanted to look for something with my mum, so we just went one afternoon when I was home and we found it together, which was special.

My big bow was from Heart Aflutter – it was by a brand called Suzanne Ceremony – and my shoes were from Charles & Keith.

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Controversial, but I don’t know if I actually love the scent I ended up wearing. I’d wanted to get a special one but ran out of budget for a Le Labo or Jo Malone classic, so panic bought one with my sisters from a perfumery. It was nice to wear something different form the norm I suppose, but honestly I was just pushed by all the insta vids I saw about cementing a memory in scent. Looking back, I wish I’d either prioritized it more and apportioned more of a budget, or just got like a sample of a smell I love, rather than end up in the halfway house I did. Cyril couldn’t even notice a difference.

All of the jewelry I wore were just my everyday pieces except for my earrings which I got from Anthropologie in the sale – they are no longer sold, but there is a very similar dupe pair available here.

I’m not usually a dress and makeup girl, and Cyril’s definitely not a suit guy, and although I have a lot of opinions on aesthetics, the whole idea of having to commit to one aesthetic decision hugely intimidated me, so we tried to keep it as informal as we could.

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The Dress

Lena Medoyeff


My dress was by Lena Medoyeff, from Heart a Flutter Bridal Studio in Shoreditch. I somehow blindly found the dress on my first attempt the month after we got engaged. I was honestly dreading the entire process because every blog ever** says it takes like, minimum six months to find a dress and get it altered etc and we hadn’t given ourselves the longest engagement.

Also, we had a relatively small budget to make everything happen – so the idea of finding something I loved, that didn’t make me feel like I was in a costume, that was also in budget, felt like one goal too many.

So as any over-thinker would, I panick-booked a load of viewings and roped a friend and her very newly born baby into coming along with me for moral support.

That Thursday, we literally walked into Heart a Flutter, with tiny baby in tow, and after being (very kindly) informed I couldn’t afford any of the styles I’d picked online, so I was taken to the sample room to look through the rails. 

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Mine ended up being the second dress I tried on, which just felt entirely too easy. So I Facetimed my mum, who gave the smile of approval, and then walked out with it there an then. No need for any alterations, it was under budget because it was a sample and so, I just went straight to work. The moral of this story – shop sample sales.

Heart a Flutter were genuinely lovely though and they had a great selection of pieces, I also bought a huge bow for my hair from them. It’s jokes because my two loose goals were a dress with pockets and some form of ridiculously big bow, so they understood the brief.

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I loved the look of The Fall Bride too, that would have been my next appointment had I not found mine first time round.

I wish I had something smart to say on why I wore what I wore, but that’s just what I was drawn to. I’m sure in ten years time, I’ll be drawn to something slightly different, and that’s ok. The most I can say is, I was wanting something timeless and that didn’t make me feel like I was in bridal costume. I think the dress – for me at least – was the most perfect balance between elegance and the understated. Its simplicity made me feel confident.

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It also meant I could be so much more playful with accessories – which is essentially me in the everyday, accessories are what make an outfit. So the slip dress meant I could have the fun shoes, and the fun veil and the fun bow. Hilariously I didn’t try any of the items on together until the day of the wedding. I was too anxious to, not sure that’s a recommendation, but thankfully it all worked.

I also found another slip dress for the evening (I think from Arket in the end, I literally ended up buying about six options online to decide between) just so I could dance without fear of ruining the silk.

**Editors Note: Not every blog says it takes six months to find your dress! Also, not every boutique requires long lead times when ordering your dress – read this.

I loved both looks, I felt me, but fancy. I could eat and move and laugh and not feel like I was ‘playing bride’.

Bridesmaids

My sisters were my bridesmaids. We’re all different heights and sizes and have very different tastes. Having worn identical dresses as a bridesmaid in the past, I just wanted them to wear whatever made them feel comfortable, the only rules were it had to be in the green/blue spectrum. I think we found them all online from places like ASOS and Warehouse etc. So nothing crazy, but so much less stress.

Again, when it came to shoes, I said they could wear whatever they wanted, so they got shoes from a few different high street stores. I actually run an account called @thehackneyhooker, so I made us all our bags which was a fun detail – especially when half the guests turned up with ones I’d made them in the past too, I should’ve turned it into a campaign.

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We just wanted to have fun, and feel relaxed, so we tried to tailor it to our personalities and preferences….

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The Ceremony

Church of St-John-at-Hackney


I don’t know if it was a stylistic choice, but we both go to church, so getting married in one was always a priority. It was great because we were actually married by one of our friends, who also happens to be Cyril’s boss, and then had friends and family from all over participate in the ceremony itself. 

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Our ceremony was at at the Church of St-John-at-Hackney – it’s genuinely the most stunning Church and gig venue which recently underwent a huge redesign by John Pawson. We’re lucky enough to live only a few minutes walk away, and Cyril works there too which made it an especially special space to use.

My dad walked me down the aisle…

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I wanted something traditional and preferably classical, just because there wasn’t really any one song that held any huge emotional significance for me to walk down the aisle to. So I spent some time listening to the classics and then came across Ludovico Einaudi’s I Giorni, which was just so perfect, because unlike a lot of the others, I listened to, it still felt light and hope-filled – turns out there are a lot of dramatic aisle songs you can walk to! 

Our friend Nai Maxwell, who’s one of the vicars at St. John at Hackney, married us. She’s one of our faves and it meant so much to walk through the whole journey of planning and then the official ceremony with her. She was incredible.

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Two of our close friends did the readings for our ceremony, they read from Philippians 2: 1-8 & Psalm 139:1-18.

We chose these two passages from the Bible in particular after spending time thinking and praying about what it was we understood marriage and faith and commitment to mean, they were verses that we hope to emulate in our lives as individuals and together as a couple. 

Our rings were vintage from jewellers in either York or Portsmouth. Although I adore my ring, the one thing I’d say about buying vintage is that you shouldn’t be surprised if you have to pay for repairs; mine needed the claws replacing quite early on which was a joyous unexpected cost. 

For flowers, we used Melisa Zulu – a flower icon. Not only is she the best and kindest person ever, but she is also beyond talented when it comes to floristry.

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I had a very clear idea of colour and form; Mono bouquets were always all I’d wanted, as well as some sculptural plinths to frame the stage. And from our first conversation, she just so clearly understood and improved everything I suggested. 

After I recovered from the excitement of seeing everyone in the room as I walked down the aisle, all I could do was beam at her work, it really was beyond what I could have imagined.

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The ceremony was so stunning for me. I’d been dreading walking down the aisle and everyone looking at me, and then getting something wrong – but honestly, as soon as the doors opened and I saw everyone, I’ve never felt a joy like it, it was the most unexpected thing, I just couldn’t stop smiling.

And once I saw Cyril, all I could think of was how happy I was that it was him I was sharing it all with. 

Photography

Our photographer, Ruth Atkinson is beyond incredible, I genuinely had her as a need before anything else – she was one of the non-negotiables. Ruth has the most stunning eye, everything looks timeless and yet she captures the most incredible moments of personality.

As a photographer, she’s so incredibly unobtrusive; Cyril and I aren’t big photo people, and genuinely one of my biggest sources of anxiety on the day was feeling super watched – hard when you’re the bride – so the idea of posing for any photos was a bit of a no.

Thankfully, Ruth’s style is more documentary, although you have some couple shots, we didn’t feel at all uncomfortable or staged. She just sees moments and makes them magic.

Our trip between venues in the car was great – it looked sick, and honestly every stereotype about London being miserable is upended when you’re dressed for a wedding driving through the streets in some rattly vintage car.

Everyone waves and shouts, busses were honking, it just felt so surreal, like we’d been given our own little slice of special to enjoy in amongst the madness of the day.

Shout out to our friend Zac for lending us his lockdown project car.

How They Met

We met in Bristol about five years ago, just before I moved to London for work. We were dating long distance for a couple of years over the pandemic, before Cyril moved to join me in 2022. We got engaged that November and then married the following September.

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When it came to suit shopping, we knew we weren’t going to do something uber formal because although we had a traditional ceremony, the rest of our day was pretty informal. So, we started looking for a workwear style suit – seeing as Cyril lives in a chore jacket most of the time anyway. 

We ordered a navy suit from Uskees. He tried it, it fitted perfectly and that’s what we stuck with. Our outfits were surprisingly easy. For a shirt, we just got a collarless heavy white cotton one from COS, and then his shoes we just got from ASOS.

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We wanted it to be a day made up of the things and people that we love, and I think that’s what we nailed. We just wanted to have fun, and feel relaxed, so we tried to tailor it to our personalities and preferences.

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The Reception

St Leonard’s Church Shoreditch


Cyril, being a proud Northerner, and us getting married in East London, was there any other option than pie for our meal? (No!). The Humble Pie Company catered our wedding. They are genuinely the best thing – so delicious, and Toby was so helpful – we couldn’t recommend enough.

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We then ordered a tonne of pizza’s from Pizza Pilgrims – hilariously affordable when you’re that close (they were opposite our venue!) because they just do it all in house then the groomsmen did a couple of runs over to grab them.

I did dramatically over order however! As we were heading off on honeymoon, we were receiving texts from guests taking a couple of boxes back to their hotel rooms, they seemed happy enough with my miscalculation! 

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I sourced most of the decor on Ebay. Like I said, the budget wasn’t huge, but I knew what I wanted so just spent a lot of time trawling to find the right vases/candelabras/stainless steel etc.

Tragically, my wedding Instagram saves folders are one of the things I’m proudest to have curated last year – they are stunning!

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We did our own stationery with the help of a fab friend of ours (shoutout Shane). He smashed the design and then I just carried that through to all of the other bits we needed. We then got it all printed at Rapidity in London which was pretty affordable.

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We’re not huge cake eaters – from day one, we joked that we’d only ever want glazed ring crispy crème’s, or an old fashion tray bake – like the ones they used to make at school with hundreds and thousands on – and so that’s what we had! E5 Bakehouse made the bread for our tables and the tray bakes too. I wish I could say I tried some, but like most couples on their wedding day, we barely had any of the food! The guests seemingly loved it though.

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For flowers, we used Melisa Zulu – a flower icon. Not only is she the best and kindest person ever, but she is also beyond talented when it comes to floristry.

I had a very clear idea of colour and form, mono bouquets were always all I’d wanted, as well as some sculptural plinths to frame the stage. And from our first conversation, she just so clearly understood and improved everything I suggested. 

After I recovered from the excitement of seeing everyone in the room as I walked down the aisle, all I could do was beam at her work, it really was beyond what I could have imagined.

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Evening & Dancing

We hired DJ Dan! Such a great guy, we had so much fun in the evening and he was a huge part of this.

We’re not huge dancers, so we started out with Leon Bridges Homecoming (we love) then got DJ Dan (it’s obligatory to call him that) to cut into Sister Sledge’s ‘We Are Family’, which my sisters and the groomsman ran into dragging people with them, would recommend.

Words of Wedded Wisdom

At the outset of planning, we made a list of three priorities we didn’t want to compromise on, so kept going back to that when we had to make a decision which affected budget or timescale. Ultimately, we wanted it to be a day that didn’t bankrupt us and we wanted it to be full of what we love, so we ignored a lot of the to do lists because quite honestly, no one remembers most of those things anyway. 

I wish I’d taken more people up on their offers to help however and I wish I’d been better at not pulling our wedding conversations into date night!

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Annabel

Annabel View all Annabel's articles

Founder of Love My Dress. Passionate Podcaster and Editor. Annabel lives in rural North Yorkshire with her husband and business partner Philip, their two daughters and menagerie of furry hounds. She loves photography, meditation, walking, being outdoors and star gazing. She is fierce when it comes to championing talent within the wedding industry and when she's not working on Love My Dress, she supports her husband Philip in the running of the family's sustainable flower farm and floral design business, Moonwind Flowers. In 2013, she became a published author.

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