We met in Vegas! (Although not as sensationally as one’s imagination could paint.) We both work for the same company and met at a project Christmas Party nearly five years ago. Needless to say, we hit it off immediately. Unfortunately, it would be another two years before we found ourselves working together again, and our friendship and eventual relationship blossomed from there.
The Venues and Location
Being based in the U.S., our venue searches were very limited to what we could find through internet searches over beers at our local pub on the weekends. We very quickly realized help was a must, and we were even more fortunate to find availability with Always Andri Wedding Design. We shared with Andri what the two of us envisioned for our family affair, and she knocked it out of the park with her recommendations.
We knew big white dresses were not our style. On one of our trips to the UK, Sarah’s best friend and matron of honor, Kate, arranged for a personal shopper to assist in helping us find dresses that were different, yet complimentary. After a few hideous but hilarious initial choices, we found our dresses on the first try in a Cardiff, Wales House of Frazier. Our white coats were purchased in the U.S. after a friendly reminder from our wedding planner that we might not want to show up in our regular winter coats. We found what we were looking for from Massimo Dutti and BCBG Max Azria. On our wedding, we spent five hours in hair and makeup, and it took only five minutes to get dressed.
The Decor and Styling
Most of the style and look of the day was completely orchestrated through our wedding planner, Always Andri and Simon Nickell Floral designs. We gave very loose instructions of what we didn’t want and let the professionals do what they do best and handle the rest. We chose not to have the traditional bridal bouquets, as we’re both based in the U.S. and wouldn’t be able to dry or save any of the arrangements. Instead, Simon and his team crafted beautiful buttonholes for all of the guests. Initially we joked these would act as a ticket for the bus ride to the London Eye—little did we know they were actually supremely helpful in identifying the wedding party through throngs of tourists navigating through London!
On our invitation reply cards, we asked for those who couldn’t attend to reply with a little marriage advice for us. The responses back were a complete mix of heartfelt advice, funny anecdotes, and one-liners that probably shouldn’t be shared! At some point we had an epiphany to edit some of these responses together into a unique wedding reading. It was our way of including those who couldn’t share the day with us.
The First Dance
This was surprisingly one of our hardest decisions (and the cause of a micro-argument or two)! In the end, we had a list we tossed to the musicians about two hours before the actual dance and let them choose. They picked “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.
We wanted to bring a little American style entertainment and hired dueling pianos from Piano Factor. The guys were excellent, and we certainly caught a few guests singing along to their choices.
The Best Bits
The ceremony. The thought of declaring our absolute love for each other standing front and centre before all our friends and family was nerve-racking to say the least. A last-minute elopement may have been discussed on the way to the ceremony… In actuality, it turned out to be the easiest, calmest, most comfortingly perfect part of the day.
The Words of Wisdom
Recently married friends told us to make sure we carved out some alone time to ensure we savoured the moment. We took the advice and are so very glad we did. Having those extra little moments in between the hustle was definitely worth it and is turning out to be what we use as anchors in our memories for the full day’s events.
For planning advice: if you can, hire a planner!
Photos by. Babb Photo
Photography | Babb Photo
Planning, styling and design | Always Andri
Florist | Simon Nickel Design
Ceremony Venue | The Asylum
Reception Venue | St Bart’s Brewery
Decor/styling | Copper Cutlery Hire Bo Boutique
Glassware rental | Classic Crockery
Linen rental | 88 Events
Cake Maker | Butter Beautiful
Ceremony Caterer | The Humble Pie Company
Wedding Planner | Always Andri Wedding Design
Invitations | Paperless Post
On the day Stationery | Emily & Jo
Entertainment (day & evening) | Guitarist Thom via Liquid Strings
Evening entertainments | Piano Factor
Transport | London Retro Bus Company
Makeup | Ausra via Kristina Gasperas
Hair | Agata Julia
Crackers | The Handmade Cracker Company
Hotel | The Zetter
Blackboard messages | Oh Wonder Calligraphy
Laura at Babb Photo is a creative London wedding photographer with a penchant for glitter, bright colours and love in all it's forms.