Hold up – press pause on your day, put down that deadline for a minute (I know, we’re terrible influences) and take some proper time to appreciate the utter gorgeousness that is Becky and Adam’s Jewish wedding!
We thought we’d seen every chuppah design out there, but a living-tree chuppah, adorned with friends’ and family’s blessings and wishes for the couple’s future is such an awesome, unique idea. There are so many incredible hidden gems at their venue, Micklefield Hall, but Becky and Adam were the first couple to get married underneath that tree, making their own mark on the venue’s story.
To say Becky and Adam did things their way would be an understatement – they did things their way, and then some.
We LOVE that bride Becky stayed true to herself, even when under pressure, and went with her own beeeeautiful minimalist makeup look. Becky did so with the confidence that, in the words of the couple’s wonderful photographers, Adam and Hannah, “the best photos are of a happy bride”. And right they were – Becky’s happiness and ease with herself glows through in the stunning spread of wedding pictures Adam and Hannah provided.
Becky’s detailed Maggie Sottero gown also looked like a dream on her, and was a perfect fit for the rustic, boho-style aesthetic of the day as a whole.
The couple opted for a really personalized Jewish ceremony, with both bride and groom smashing a glass. We are SO here for that, and it’s a prime example of how Jewish customs don’t have to be antiquated. You can absolutely make them your own and construct a ceremony that works with your own values.
THREE of our incredible Recommended Vendors were involved with this love-filled big day. The ketubah was lovingly made by Ink With Intent, wedding band The White Keys rocked the reception and videographer Moon & Back made the cinematic, heartfelt wedding video below, which you simply MUST watch!
There’s so much more to say about this breathtaking day, we haven’t even had time to touch on the divine décor, but we’d be going on forever, so we’ll pass you over to Becky, and Adam, for the full report.
How we met
Becky, the bride: We met when we both lived in Moishe House London, a home-based community for Jewish young adults. I interviewed Adam to live in the house and it went from there…
A naturally beautiful venue
We got married at the stunningly beautiful Micklefield Hall. We chose it because we really wanted a venue that had beautiful natural surroundings.
A rustic, natural theme
We put a huge amount of effort into making the wedding truly reflect our personalities while still meeting the needs of our families. We set intentions for how we wanted our day to feel for us, and what the experience we wanted our friends and family to have was, then we built the whole day around this.
We really wanted our wedding to be fun, for people to feel comfortable and relaxed and to involve our friends and family whenever we could.
We went for a rustic and natural aesthetic and we added lots of personal touches that we made ourselves. Our color scheme was white, lavender and sky blue and our kippot from Cool Kippahs were in all three of these colors too.
We really wanted to get married under a tree, and we were the first people at our venue to have our ceremony out in the field under a big tree, which was really beautiful.
We also had a fish and veggie wedding instead of meat, which was important for us too and the meal was totally delicious.
We designed and planned the whole wedding, and we hired Kati Pauk just to run things on the day. This was an excellent decision! About ten days before the wedding, we just handed everything over to Kati, all of the suppliers’ details, everything that we had made and bought for the day and a very detailed running order that we had put together.
Kati checked in with all the suppliers the week before the wedding and was there for the whole day to make sure everything ran as we wanted without us having to do anything at all. She made the whole day entirely stress free and is a lovely, lovely person!
Heathrow Sound were great on the day; sorting out how to get enough cable to put a PA in the middle of a field wasn’t straightforward at first!
Adam’s amazing sister-in-law designed our invites for us in keeping with our color scheme and our general love of trees. She did an amazing job, this design was then used on our benchers and table plan. She does freelance design.
A beautiful bride with minimalist makeup
With hair and makeup, my main concern was to look like myself! For that reason, I didn’t wear foundation or lipstick, as I don’t ever.
My mum treated me to a really nice sparkly Urban Decay palette of eyeshadows, and one of my bridesmaids bought me an Urban Decay glitter eyeliner in gold.
I did my makeup myself on the day, and my mum’s makeup artist just gave me a lick of waterproof mascara. This was a huge bone of contention in the lead up to the wedding. Lot’s of people told me I wouldn’t look right without foundation and a good bit of makeup.
I think throughout the whole wedding experience lots of people told me that certain things should be a certain way – this isn’t the truth. I asked our photographers if I would look bad in wedding photos without foundation, as this is what everyone told me – I got an amazing response. They said the best photos are of a happy bride, so do whatever makes you feel comfortable. I barely wore any makeup on the day, and I felt great and looked great, and so do the photos!
Hair wise, I also just wanted to look like myself (on a normal day, I don’t even brush it!) so I just had it simply curled and pinned to one side, off my neck so I wouldn’t get too hot when dancing. I had a pretty fresh flower clip for after the ceremony.
On the wedding day, Adam sent me a great present. He bought me a bright blue Adidas tracksuit to get ready in which I loved!
A pretty Maggie Sottero dress
I really hard time finding a wedding dress because in all honestly I thought all wedding dresses look a bit silly. While I really liked my dress, I definitely didn’t find anything that I was in love with, because I’m not the type of person who would fall in love with a dress (I tried on at least 30 dresses).
I went with Amal by Maggie Sottero because I thought the design was pretty, I really liked the back of it, and most importantly I could eat, dance and go to the toilet without feeling restricted or needing help.
I borrowed my sister-in-law’s veil because it was really beautiful and I didn’t want to spend hundreds of pounds on something I would just wear for two hours (it came straight off after the ceremony!) I really didn’t enjoy wearing a front veil and given the chance again I wouldn’t have done it.
I borrowed a friend’s earrings as they were lovely and I didn’t have anything that matched.
I wore totally flat silvery sandals. My main concern was being able to dance! I got them from Debenhams, they had a great selection of wedding suitable sandals.
The handsome groom
Adam, the groom: I hate shopping and was slightly dreading going looking for my wedding outfit, so I recruited our friend, Jacob (who was also our hilarious MC), to be my official stylist and shopping assistant! It ended up being relatively pain free.
I wore a bright blue suit, which was a bargain on sale at the Paul Smith Sale Shop, a hidden gem in Mayfair that Jacob introduced me to.
I got two shirts for the big day so I had a less formal, more fun outfit change after sweating through the first shirt! I started with a simple white shirt (from Topman) together with a lavender knitted tie I bought online from Frederick Thomas. My change of shirt was a fun monkey-print shirt I ordered online from Paul Smith. My shoes and belt were light brown, from Dune and Ted Baker respectively.
Together with much of my family and all my best people, I had a beautiful buttonhole to top it all off – created by our amazing florist, Revival Rooms.
Bridesmaids in shades of purple
Becky: We had five lovely bridesmaids, who wore matching dresses in two shades of purple to go with the color scheme. It was a coincidence that they came out with the same dress. We went to Sexy Her in Croydon. They have lots of dresses in lots of different styles for reasonable prices, compared to everywhere else I had seen.
The bridesmaids could choose their own style of dress and I just got them made up in the color that I wanted. Some chose to add straps, and some not. They looked great, and my cousin got a teenage version of the same dress the older bridesmaids had.
Adam’s brothers and sisters were his best people, instead of having a best man, and they all had special roles to play in the run up to the wedding and on the day. Adam’s sisters opted to wear fresh flower hair clips that were similar to the button holes.
A living tree chuppah decorated with hopes and blessings
The chuppah fitted in with the rest of our decor – natural and relaxed. We were inspired by a really simple design we saw on Pinterest of a living tree that had been made into a chuppah. We opted for simple wooden branches, and lots of green foliage, and delicate flowers adorning it.
We asked our friends and family members to write their blessings and hopes for us and for themselves onto brown luggage labels, and we adorned the chuppah with them, so their thoughts and wishes would be with us during the ceremony, which we loved.
A traditional Jewish ceremony that was as egalitarian as possible
We literally spent hours and hours and hours on the ceremony. We felt it was very important that the ceremony reflected who we were as a couple, and our values. We were honoured to be guided throughout this whole process of learning and design by our inspirational Rabba Yaffa Epstein, so that we could reach the place of having a traditional ceremony that was as egalitarian as possible, within the bounds of Jewish tradition.
Adam’s tisch also brought together his nearest and dearest for drinks in the rose garden. His friend Daniel had organised for a few friends and family to share a few words, blessings, poems, before dancing the groom to see me for the first time in nearly a week.
The bedeken was incredibly beautiful. Adam, followed by his friends and family dancing and singing came to meet me. We hadn’t seen each other for several days and it was a really exciting and special moment that was very emotional. We were blessed by our parents, and by each other’s parents, as our friends sang and surrounded us with their love and laughter.
We walked around each other, we both spoke under the chuppah, we used our grandparents kiddush cups, and our wonderful friends and family blessed us with the Sheva Brachot and song, and we both smashed a glass.
A ketubah and a Brit Ahuvim
As well as having a ketubah we opted for a Brit Ahuvim, which is a ‘lovers’ covenant’. It was read out under the chuppah and it hangs on our wall at home. It is a contract that outlines the values and intentions that we want to underpin the home and life we build together.
We had it beautifully designed by Ink With Intent (who were great throughout the whole design process) and our friends signed it as witnesses.
Two live bands
Our first dance was amazing! We danced to Praise You by Fatboy Slim. We chose it because the lyrics are really nice, and it isn’t too soppy.
We had two incredible bands. Neither of us like the traditional music that is usually used for Israeli dancing so we opted to go with our amazing friend’s klezmer band called Tantz. They played gentle intro music for us at the chuppah, broke into klezmer for dancing in the field straight after the ceremony, and played a set before dinner, too. They brought amazing energy to the dance floor and I would highly recommend them.
We put a lot of work into finding a band that we really liked for the after-dinner dancing. We went with The White Keys who were great, playing songs that we loved and our parents friends loved too – the highlight of the night was our friends teaching Becky’s mum the words to Re-Rewind by Artful Dodger, (who knew everyone would love an old school garage set), and Becky’s fave song of the night was a version of Gold Dust by DJ Fresh.
Seasonal English garden flowers
We went for seasonal flowers with a rustic, English garden feel, matching to our color scheme. The lead flowers were sweetpeas and anemone, accompanied by muscari and peonies with lots of green foliage.
Adam’s buttonhole was really beautiful!
For the table decorations, we had lots of little glass jars filled with flowers and mini cacti and succulents. We bought about 100 little cacti and succulents from Amazon, and then repotted them in mini terracotta plant pots that we had written A&B on (Adam and Becky). We put a pot between two people, with their name labels attached to it which was a brown luggage tag that Adam’s mum wrote on in calligraphy. This nicely matched the luggage tags that were on the chuppah.
Our fabulous photographer and videographer
We liked the style of both of these vendors because they produced film and photos that were really natural and relaxed, rather than overly posed and choreographed.
Celia Clyne was our caterer, and we had a delicious veggie and fish only wedding with some great cocktails including lychee Martini, Pimms and dark and stormy, which is our go to cocktail. We opted not to have a cake.
Between the main course and dessert, we popped out into the field with our best people and bridesmaids to take some photos as the sun was setting. It was really fun and great just to get a little time out with our closest people.
A festival vibe
We made the reception like a little festival with hay bales and giant garden games (giant Connect 4, borrowed from Adam’s aunt and the amazing wooden games Puckett and Rollet from Et Games) and otherwise we didn’t need anything on top of our two great bands.
We made our own photo booth, we borrowed a couple of Polaroid cameras and ordered some random costumes pieces like moustaches etc. and inflatable flamingos and put them out at the reception for people to use themselves. This was a much cheaper option than a hiring a photo booth.
Involving family and friends
We involved our friends and family at every point we could. One of the most beautiful parts of the day was our tisch parties and the bedeken at the start of the day. I sat by the pond, surrounded by my female friends and family, as they sang to me, gave speeches and told stories.
It was led by my amazing friend, Charlie. She taught everyone the songs beforehand, using Whatsapp. It was really beautiful moment of calm, connection with friends and loveliness before the wedding ceremony.
A joint speech
Our friend Jacob was the MC, he was hilarious and brought some amazing giant disco-ball-head props that he wore during a part of his speech. We also got him to do his intro speech at the end of the cocktail reception, before we went into the dining room, to help break up the speeches, which worked really well.
We made a speech together as bride and groom. We wrote the first part together, then the next parts to each other separately. There were a lot of jokes about how I tried to woo Adam, which, unbeknownst to us, several other people had also referenced in their speeches too.
A hotel after party
We had a great after party at our hotel Shendish Manor which meant we could carry the party on! The hotel has really beautiful grounds and hosted my friends and family for a big dinner the night before the wedding.
We also did a lot of our separate family photos there before the wedding so we could spend less time doing photos during the party and join the reception.
Advice to couples currently planning their wedding
On the day, don’t stress. You have to just let go and what will be will be. I’ve watched brides worrying about what time dinner is being served, instead of being present and enjoying the moment. A wedding organizer on the day is a great way to help ensure this happens.
Be yourself and challenge the norms that people say you have to be! When it comes to a wedding, especially a Jewish one, the people around you can be consumed by the norms you are supposed to conform to. Actually you don’t have to wear makeup and your guests can wear jeans if you want them to and you really can do things the way that you want to!
Becky & Adam’s little white book
Photographer – Adam and Hannah
Videographer – Moon & Back
Ketubah – Ink With Intent
Band – The White Keys
Venue – Micklefield Hall
On the day coordinator – Kati Pauk
Bride’s dress – Maggie Sottero
Bride’s shoes – Debenhams
Bride’s tracksuit – Adidas
Groom’s attire – Paul Smith, Frederick Thomas, Dune and Ted Baker
Bridesmaids – Sexy Her
Makeup – Urban Decay
Flowers – Revival Rooms
Klezmer band – Tantz
Catering – Celia Clyne
Giant games – Et Games
Kippahs – Cool Kippahs
Cables – Heathrow Sound
After party – Shendish Manor