Natasha and Barry’s Jewish London wedding was all about color – and boy did they go all out! The stunning chuppah, created by extraordinary florist, Amie Bone, made an incredible centerpiece for the entire celebration.
The wedding was held after Shabbat on Saturday night, Israeli style, and was a full-on family affair, with everybody close to the couple playing an important role in the big day.
Beautiful bride Natasha looked simply incredible in her Pronovias gown, which was purchased at the 11th hour with a lot of help from the wonderful staff at Bridal Rogue Gallery. You’d never know there was behind-the-scenes dress drama, as Natasha looked like a dream!
Smashing The Glass Recommended Vendor and world-renowned kosher caterer, Food Story, outdid themselves with what can only be described as a sumptuous feast, complete with desserts with a little something extra…
Photographers Reportage Gallery captured all the action of the day and the wonderful writeup below was provided by bride Natasha, who we’ll hand you over to now! Take it away, Natasha!
How we met
Natasha, the bride: After dating for just under a year and a half, Barry proposed in Paris under the Eiffel Tower — no clichà©s at all! Without me knowing, he’d been planning this for a few months and had even bought a beautiful ring, made for me, which luckily fit!
A newly refurbished venue
We chose The Berkeley hotel in London for our wedding. We actually booked the hotel off plan as the ballroom was undergoing a refurbishment. All we saw was a floor space and had to hope it would really turn out like that! We chose the venue as we loved the fresh, modern feel of the ballroom and the amazing 3D ceiling.
We knew we wanted to get married somewhere close to home, as it was important to us that all our loved ones could be there. We had both our ceremony and party there.
A colorful theme and perfect planner
We didn’t have a theme as such, but I love bright, vivid colors particularly the color purple. From day one we knew we wanted a colorful wedding that would really pop. Everything was either a gorgeous purple, orange, red or green.
We used a fantastic wedding planner, Katy Cresner, who helped us plan our day. She really did help with the organization of the whole thing and ensuring the day ran smoothly. If you can, I would definitely recommend hiring someone to help you in your planning. There were so many things to consider on the day to ensure the smooth running of things and without Katy I think we would have found this a lot harder.
I love laser-cut designs and from day one knew I wanted an elegant floral laser-cut invitation. Dave, from Big Day Designs, ensured this vision was met.
Our invitations opened out like an envelope and had seals to close them. Antique gold font was used for all the lettering which worked really well against the ivory background. Everyone said how beautiful they were. Big Day also created all our wedding stationery which had the laser-cut design and gold font throughout.
Trusted hair and makeup artists
Shelley Greenham, a close family friend and co-owner of Mishel Makeup, did my makeup for the day. She is a fabulous makeup artist who really knows her stuff. I wanted to look glamorous, but also not too over-done, and she achieved that perfectly. She used her own makeup brand (Mishel Makeup) on me and it stayed on all night, until around 4am, when we finally went to bed! I loved my makeup.
Louise Hill, did my hair, my bridesmaids and my mums. We actually asked her to come over from Spain for the wedding as she had done such a great job on my sister-in-law’s hair at her wedding. Louise is great, because you can show her any hair style and she is able to replicate it perfectly. I wore my hair half back and wavy with a side parting. The waves stayed in all night and I was really happy with it. She also did a fab up do on my mum and side ponytails on my bridesmaids. Everyone’s hair looked great.
A last-minute wardrobe change
I actually only bought my dress four weeks before the wedding! This was after having bought another one and five weeks before realising it just wasn’t working for me. A massive panic ensued and many tears were shed!
After some urgent calling around, I went to Bridal Rogue Gallery in Marylebone and found a gorgeous lace Pronovias dress that luckily fit me like a glove. The team there were amazing and let me buy the sample dress straight from the rack. I had my first (and last) fitting two weeks before the big day!
It had a beautiful dramatic train and modern slit up the middle of it. As soon as I put it on, I cried with relief and happiness. I picked it up just the day before the wedding- talk about last minute!
My veil was actually borrowed from my sister-in-law, who recently got married, and my diamantà© hairpiece was also borrowed from a close friend.
My mum bought me some gorgeous earrings for the day and I wore a very special necklace and bracelet that had been lent to me by my grandmother, who had been bought it over 50 years ago from my late grandpa.
Rachel Simpson shoes
I wore pretty high heels for the day and I wore them the entire night too! My dress had a dramatic slit up the middle of it so I knew I had to have shoes that looked great as everyone would see them!
They were by the designer Rachel Simpson and also bought in Bridal Rogue Gallery. They were a silvery blue colour and surprisingly comfortable. I will definitely be wearing them again.
The handsome groom
Barry wore a slim fit Hackett suit with smart Tommy Hilfiger shoes. It was a black dinner suit that he paired with a bucket waistcoat. We decided on black suits for the groom and ushers, as we wanted their orange button hole flowers to really pop against them. He also wore different cufflinks on each wrist. One was from his close friend, who sadly passed away the previous year, and the other a present from me for our wedding day. He looked very handsome on the night.
Bridesmaids, flower girls and a flower baby
I had two bridesmaids and four flower girls, as well as a flower baby!
As the color scheme was centred around purple, my bridesmaids wore long purple one-shoulder dresses bought at David’s Bridal. They looked gorgeous. My four young flower girls wore ivory dresses from Monsoon and my flower baby (my niece) wore a beautiful dress from Debenhams. I loved the bows on the back of the flower girl dresses and the matching bows in their hair!
We also had four page boys who wore lilac waistcoats to match our purple colour scheme. They looked very cute!
A show-stopping chuppah
We wanted our chuppah to be grand and a focal point of the room. Our florist, Amie Bone, did a stunning job on it. My mum and I love flowers, so we were very particular with what we chose.
The flowers on the day surpassed anything we had imagined – they were stunning. The flowers were a mixture of birds of paradise, purple hydrangeas, red trailing amaranths, tulips, roses, carmanthus, orange euphorbia, incurve blooms and masses and masses of foliage.
An Israeli-style late Saturday wedding
We had an Israeli-style wedding in London on a Saturday night, after Shabbat had come out. Rather than our ceremony first, the reception began the evening’s festivities. We then had our ceremony, which was held in the ballroom.
Our guests were seated around their tables and our stunning chuppah was in the middle of the dance floor. When we made our entrance, around the tables, everyone was standing up and clapping. There was a wonderful informal atmosphere, which was what we had hoped for. My favourite part of the ceremony was when I circled Barry seven times. This was highly emotional and I could see my dad crying from the corner of my eye.
I loved that my grandpa, our dads and our uncles sung our 7 blessings under the chuppah and my grandpa also sung Hamotzi. Our Rabbi, Moshe Mayerfeld is a friend of Barry’s so he really did make our ceremony personal and meaningful. He explained everything that was going on in English and Hebrew so that our non-Jewish guests were able to follow proceedings too. He orchestrated a wonderful ceremony. We loved our selfie under the chuppah with him too!
Emotional music choices
The music during our ceremony was very important to me and I spent a lot of time coming up with the right songs for us. We had a wonderful chazan, Yossi Saunders, who sang during our ceremony. He was actually recommended to us by my grandpa!
Barry walked down the aisle to Sky Full of Stars by Coldplay, our bridesmaids, siblings, grandparents and flower girl/ boys entered to Lecha Dodi by the Maccabeats. I came in, alongside both my parents, to Can’t Help Falling In Love by Haley Reinhart.
When I circled Barry seven times, under the chuppah, Yossi sung Tale As Old As Time from “Beauty and the Beast” — this got most of our guests crying! Time To Say Goodbye by Lucio Quarantotto was sung after the seventh blessing. All the songs were sung in Hebrew.
As already mentioned, Amie Bone was in charge of our flowers and chuppah design. We were recommend her by our wedding planner, Katy, and she did a phenomenal job.
She had so many wonderful ideas and was really enthusiastic throughout the planning process. She used the same flowers as our chuppah in our table centrepieces and she made me the most beautiful hanging bouquet. Amie also dressed the room so that the entrance doors were adorned in flowers and the bars too. Our flower girls and page boys also scattered petals, given to them by Amie, during the ceremony.
Our fabulous photographer…
We chose Pascal and his amazing team from Reportage Gallery to be our photographers on the day. Pascal and the team went above and beyond to make sure they got all the important action shots as well as some lovely family photos.
I was very nervous on the day and Pascal really did help me feel more relaxed and confident. Pascal even gave us some edited photos from the wedding the very next day! We love our wedding photos and would definitely recommend Reportage.
We actually weren’t going to have a video, but a couple of months before the wedding we changed our minds. We used Alex Lesseps and his team from Two Brothers Productions. They were very professional and we barely noticed they were even there.
Food that sparkles
Food Story did our catering and the food was delicious. We had a wide tasty range of canapà©s and cocktails in our reception and the French Martinis, in particular, went down a treat. Everyone was rather satisfied, and possibly a little bit tipsy, by the time the ceremony began!
For starter we chose a delicious sea bass dish and the main course, which was five spice duck breast, was incredibly tender.
We didn’t have a cake, but we did have some fabulous desserts on the dance floor adorned with sparklers.
Our cutlery and dishes were gold in color, also provided by Food Story, and they matched perfectly with our purple and gold colour scheme.
We had a violinist and pianist who played beautifully alongside our Chazan during the chuppah. Our entertainment for the rest of the evening was provided by a fantastic band — Club Live. They were incredible. They got everyone up on the dance floor enjoying themselves and ensured the atmosphere was fantastic. My-86-year-old granny was even up on the stage!
Barry smashed a Dizzee Rascal track with them and there were many Barry White songs during the night which went down a treat. They sung Africa for the final song of the evening as we’d mentioned we wanted to go to Africa for our honeymoon! They really were amazing.
One for the road
We gave all our guests smoked salmon bagels at the end of the evening for their journeys home. This actually went down a treat as by the time 01:30 came everyone was starving again!
The real Barry White
Barry’s surname is White so there were a lot of Barry White jokes and songs throughout the evening. The band did a great rendition of My First, My Last, My Everything which all our guests got involved with. As a joke, I’d got some very large blown up faces of Barry made and we all danced around with them during the Barry White songs. Our tables were also named after Barry White songs which everyone seemed to find amusing.
Involving the whole family
We wanted to involve all our close family on the day. My siblings walked down the aisle with my grandparents and Barry’s with their baby daughter. Barry’s younger sister was a bridesmaid and two of our siblings did toasts to the Queen and Israel. Instead of having a toastmaster, Barry’s brother-in-law, Laurie, did the job which made the evening even more personal to us.
We also had quite a lot of children at the wedding so I made them party bags which kept them occupied for some of the evening!
Advice to couples currently planning their wedding
The lead up to the wedding was quite stressful, what with dress dramas and various other issues. However, it was all worth it on the day and we had the most magical evening. It went so quickly though so I would say to try and take it all in and make sure you enjoy yourself! Smile for the cameras and smile for your guests and remember why you’re doing it in the first place!
Another piece of advice would be to do as much as you can early on. We planned our wedding in 10 months and left a lot of decisions to just two months before! In hindsight, we should have done more earlier so it wasn’t quite so hectic just before the big day.
Natasha & Barry’s little white book
Photography – Reportage Gallery
Catering – Food Story
Wedding planner – Katy Cresner
Venue – The Berkeley
Bride’s dress – Pronovias purchased at Bridal Rogue Gallery
Bride’s shoes – Rachel Simpson
Groom’s attire – Hackett and Tommy Hilfiger
Bridesmaids – David’s Bridal, Monsoon and Debenhams
Hair + Makeup – Mishel Makeup and Louise Hill
Flowers – Amie Bone
Band – Club Live
Invitation – Big Day Designs
Chazan – Yossi Saunders
Rabbi – Moshe Mayerfeld
Videography – Two Brothers Productions