A Late Autumn Wedding at Hampton Court Palace for Claudia Wearing Andrea Hawkes Bridal

Bride and groom standing on the steps at Hampton Court Palace surrounded by the bridal party showering them in confetti. The bridesmaids wear bright pink and red dresses. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

Claudia and Fred’s effortlessly elegant winter wedding was held at Hampton Court Palace on wedding was held on 11th November 2023

The bride turned to the talents of designer Steph of Fairynuffflowers to fill her late Autumn/early winter wedding with an abundance of colour. She also wore a simple bridal gown by sustainable bridal fashion designer, Andrew Hawkes. Andrea Hawkes is a British bridal designer based in London, who is renowned for creating contemporary, sustainable, minimalist wedding dresses for modern brides. We adore working with Andrea and her team – a family run business with strong ethical values.

Love and thanks to  Victoria Somerset-How for sharing these most delightful images.

Bride and groom wandering outdoors during their Autumn wedding at Hampton Court Palace. Bride wears the Brie dress by Andrew Hawkes bridal. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.
Bride with a simple bun being assisted in to her Andrea Hawkes Bridal wedding dress. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

The Dress & Accessories

My wedding dress was by Andrew Hawkes and comprised of the ‘Brie dress’ and ‘Hermione’ top.

I bought my dress directly from the Andrea Hawkes boutique in Angel. The whole process was an absolute delight.

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I wore the snowdrop veil from Clover London and my shoes were Loeffler Randall. My perfume was Perfume Prada Paradoxe.

Loeffler Randall wedding shoes with a bow. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

The Andrea Hawkes style is very elegant, timeless, and understated which is exactly what I was looking for. Siobhan the stylist was so helpful during the selection process and I could not have been happier with my final dress.

I knew I wanted to have long sleeves for the ceremony in the Chapel. I had seen some lovely examples of dress and top combinations which gave you the option of having sleeves for a portion of the day but then transitioning to just a strap dress for the later part of the evening.

This was the initial brief I took to Andrea Hawkes. The combination the team made was absolutely perfect. I really think you can’t go wrong with a square neck dress and I loved the simplicity of the Brie style. The Hermione top with those dramatic sleeves gave just the right level of extra detail.

Andrew Hawkes
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I asked my bridesmaids to pick their own dresses as I wanted everyone to feel fabulous on the day. The only brief was the colour scheme of pinks, reds and oranges. As you can see, they completely nailed it.

Bride standing in between her bridesmaids - all dressed in bright pinks, reds and oranges. The bride wears an Andrea Hawkes bridal gown. They each carry early Winter wedding bouquets with green silk ribbons Hampton Court House wedding. Photography by Victoria Somerset-How.
Bride seated as she signs the wedding registry at Hampton Court Palace, groom standing proudly behind her. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

The Ceremony

Our wedding ceremony was at The Chapel Royal at Hampton Court Palace followed by a reception at Hampton Court House. My grandparents have been attending services at The Chapel Royal for years so it’s a place that means a lot to our family.

My Dad walked me down the aisle.  I walked in to Pachabel’s Canon played on the organ. 

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The wonderful chaplain at the Chapel Royal, Reverend Bloxham-Rose, officiated the ceremony. We used the traditional Church of England wedding vows.

We each asked a sibling to do a reading and decided on one religious passage and one poem. My brother read from the Song of Solomon and Fred’s sister read a poem by Rupi Kaur, “Most Importantly Love”. 

Black and white photography of bride, bridesmaids and father of the bride walking down the street towards the wedding. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

We could not have wished for a more beautiful place for our wedding ceremony. Hampton Court House is just down the road and the backdrop of Bushy Park made it the perfect choice for Autumn when the stags in the park are looking their best. 

Without a doubt the ceremony itself was my favourite part. The Chapel is such a special place and the music from the choir was beautiful. Walking down the aisle, seeing Fred standing there, it’s something I will never forget. 

Bride and groom exiting the wedding ceremony room at Hampton Court Palace. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

We wanted the day to feel colourful and warm to play into the Autumn season hence the colour scheme of lots of lovely rich pinks and oranges. Beyond that our only priority was that we wanted all our guests to have a great time.

Bride and groom standing on the steps at Hampton Court Palace surrounded by the bridal party showering them in confetti. The bridesmaids wear bright pink and red dresses. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.


We met our photographer, Victoria Somerset-How, when she was taking the photos for Fred’s sister’s wedding last year. She was amazing.

Such a lovely presence on the day she struck the perfect balance between relaxed and efficient, making sure we caught the light for the formal shots and taking us off for a gorgeous sunset photo shoot in the park. 

How They Met

We met during our first term at Oxford when we were both 18 and have been together ever since. We had been going out for 10 years when Fred proposed on a beautiful rooftop in Sicily in September 2022. Suffice to say no-one was surprised when we shared the happy news. 

Fred wore a morning suit; his jacket was vintage from Hornets, his waistcoat was from Sirplus, trousers from Hawes and Curtis, tie from Gutteridge and shoes from Loakes.

Happy and joyous bride and groom walking through the fields at Hampton Court Palace for their late Autumn/winter wedding. Bride wears Andrea Hawkes Bridal and carries a colourful bouquet of wedding flowers. Groom wears tails. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

Guests walked from the Chapel to the reception venue. We could not have been luckier with the weather is was a perfect Autumn day, so crisp and fresh, not a cloud in the sky.   

Happy and excited bride and groom arriving for their wedding ceremony and raising their hands to acknowledge the applause of their guests. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

We worked with Cherelle from Perfectly Planned 4 You who helped us in the lead up to the event and provided on the day coordination. She was fantastic to work with – so organised, great style and a sharp eye for detail. 

Elegant long dining tables for a wedding reception at Hampton Court Palace. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

The Reception

Steph from Fairynuffflowers was our florist. She works almost exclusively at Hampton Court House so knows the venue inside and out and completely understood our vision for the day.

She was so bought into the colour scheme and made us the most beautiful arch to welcome people into the dining room. 

Beautiful bright wedding reception table flowers, pillar candles and crystal cut glasses. Hampton Court Palace wedding. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

We hired Seven Cherries Catering and worked with Ross who was fantastic.

April’s Baker makes incredible, kitsch iced creations which was exactly the style we were looking for. The pink and orange accents on the iced flowers were the perfect complement to the wedding décor.  

3 tier retro style wedding cakes with frilly icing. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

We designed the wedding stationery ourselves using a vintage green marble print. We then had everything printed by printed.com who were great. I would really recommend this as a way of keeping costs down. 

My favourite detail from the day was the display we made of all of our families old wedding photos. We set them up on a piano that our guests passed on their way to the dining hall.

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We are both so lucky to have a lot of happy marriages between our two families, so it was really to pay tribute to that. I also loved seeing all the wedding dresses through the ages. 

The other total star of the show was the floral arch Steph our florist made at the entrance of the dining hall. The colours were just beautiful and it completely brought the space to life.

Evening & Dancing

Our DJ was Jimmy from Festival Wedding DJs – he kept the dance floor full all night.

We chose “Thinking Of You” by Sister Sledge for our first dance.

Energetic photograph of bride and groom on the dance floor at Hampton Court Palace. Victoria Somerset-How Photography.

We had a great afternoon in the week before the wedding making up our own choreography. It was the perfect track to get the dancing started. 

Yes Events provided the giant disco ball we set up above the dance floor.

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Words of Wedded Wisdom

I think it’s important to try to give yourself a bit of freedom with your guest list if you can. Start by making sure you invite the people you love and who mean the most to you but then try to leave room for the people you have fun with and who make you laugh. I think if you have those bases covered you have the perfect recipe for a wedding you will love. 

We also could not recommend a polaroid guest book more. We absolutely love looking back at ours. The entries get messier but much more heartfelt as the night progressed and people have taken some amazing photos from the dance floor. 

I love the variety of weddings featured on Love My Dress – there is such a great range styles and aesthetics. It is so refreshing to see when so many weddings start to look so alike! 

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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.