Some weddings are a feast for the eyes – some are a treat for the heart. And some weddings are beautifully both! Yvonne and Craig’s contemporary rustic chic wedding at Micklefield Hall in Hertfordshire, UK, shot by our inimitably talented Smashing Supplier Laura Babb, was a beautiful blend of eye-catching décor and eye-dabbing personal detail.
Bride Yvonne, who recently converted to Judaism, works in design and boy can you tell. The wedding was dotted with perfectly pulled together design details; a colour scheme in soft blush pinks and whites, rustic ladders, chalkboards featuring gorgeous typography, a naked Victoria sponge – and then there was that stationery.
Yvonne took on the brave and loving task of designing and creating her whole stationery suite: from her box-set themed table signage to the 150 lovingly handcrafted (and hand gilded) invitations received by her guests.
Oh, and adorable favour idea alert: Yvonne and Craig treated each guest to a hand-decorated personalised mini bottle of pink champagne and stripy straw so they could be enjoyed during the festivities. How cute is that?
Yvonne and Craig’s big-hearted wedding also involved some astoundingly touching personal details, including a framed photograph of Yvonne’s late mother, which took pride of place during the ceremony. Yvonne and her father made the chuppah together from materials from both sides of the family, and don’t even get me started on the lovely personalised gift that Yvonne sent to Craig on the morning of the wedding…
I hope you love staring at this divine, detail-laden dream as much as I did – and make sure you check out the quirky and cool Marryoke video at the end? What’s that, you ask? I won’t ruin it for you. Enjoy!
How We Met
Yvonne, the bride: Craig and I met in a pub in Islington after Craig walked over to me and announced that he ‘had to introduce himself’! Craig played it very cool after that and waited another three weeks until he asked me out on our first date. We have been together for six years now and have made some incredible memories together. I decided to convert to Judaism a couple of years ago and although it was extremely hard work, it really was the most incredible experience and really brought me and Craig even closer together. Craig was a great support and spent hours helping me to revise and learn all the Jewish customs he was familiar with.
Choosing to get married at Micklefield Hall in Hertfordshire, UK
We got married in front of the stunning Ornamental pond at Micklefield Hall in Hertfordshire followed by dinner and dancing in The Great Barn. We had originally booked a huge club in East London for a big wedding party/ rave but had a change of heart about half way through our planning. We decided that we wanted our wedding to be something a little more classic and timeless that would be appreciated by all of our guests – including Granny!
Box set wedding theme
It was important to us that our wedding reflected our own personal style and was unique to us. As I work in design, I was able to design and produce a lot of the wedding stationery and décor myself, including the table plan and place cards, which was my absolute favourite part of the wedding theme! Craig and I are both self-confessed box set bingers and, as sad as it may sound, spend many a night snuggled up on the sofa watching endless episodes House of Cards or Game of Thrones. It has become one of our favourite things to do together. I therefore designed our table plan to feature some of our all-time favourite box set titles, and used colours and styles that would suit our wedding theme. We were so pleased with how it turned out and received some lovely compliments on the day.
Our amazing wedding planner
We had THE most fantastic Wedding Planner – Liz Linkleter. I think hiring a wedding planner was the best decision we made in the lead up to our wedding. Liz helped us in so many ways, not just with the practical side of things but also the more emotional issues that inevitably crop up during the run up to a wedding. It can be quite a stressful time so having someone involved who is impartial and highly experienced is invaluable. Having Liz took away a great deal of stress and worry which meant that we could really enjoy the build up to the wedding, which I feel is such a fun time.
Invitation made by the bride
I decided to design and make the wedding invitations myself. As a designer it was one of the best projects I could ever have the pleasure of doing, as I could design something completely unique and personal to us. I even hand applied gold leaf to all 150 invites so they were exactly as I wanted them to look.
Hair + Make-up
I had a couple of make-up trials leading up to the wedding but really didn’t feel myself when someone else did my make up, so made the decision to do my own on the day. I also used this as a great excuse to buy a whole new range of ‘wedding day make up’! I have poker straight hair and, like most girls, want what I don’t have: curls! My hair stylist on the day managed to give me lovely soft curls which was exactly what I wanted.
Annasul Y dress
My dress was from Morgan Davies Bridal in Angel and the designer was Annasul Y. I went to try dresses on with two of my best friends and I knew the dress was “the one” when I saw the looks on their faces as I walked out of the fitting room.
A veil and a flower crown
I didn’t wear any jewellery as felt that the full lace dress was beautiful enough on its own. I did wear a gorgeous flower crown, though, made by the fabulous florist Pip Lowe.
Bright pink heels
I didn’t want to invest in a pair of shoes for my wedding day that I would never wear again, so bought a super high heeled pair of bright pink and gold Rupert Sanderson mules which I now wear regularly with a pair of jeans.
The handsome groom
Craig wore a beautiful dark navy suit with an ivory tie and blush coloured pocket square, with a new pair of Grenson brogues (he has 15 pairs of Grenson shoes – he is obsessed!). As a gift for Craig on the wedding day, I had a gold tie clip made for him with the date of our wedding engraved on the back which one of my bridesmaid took over to his hotel room on the morning of the wedding, so seeing him wearing that on the day was lovely.
Bridesmaids in pink
I have an amazing, but quite large, group of very close girlfriends so had to decide quite early on whether to have just my little niece as bridesmaid or all the girls. It was an ‘all or nothing’ decision and I went with ‘all’! I had 10 beautiful bridesmaids. I sadly lost my mother a few years ago and as clichéd as it sounds, my friends really have become my family, so I wanted them all to be right by my side on the big day.
Most of my bridesmaids work in the fashion industry and have their own unique styles. I felt it was important for all the girls to be super comfortable and confident on the day which is why I chose a colour theme and then let the girls decide on their own choice of dress. This meant that the wedding had a really eclectic style with all the girls in different tones of soft pink and different silhouettes.
I wanted our chuppah to be unique and meaningful to us so decided I would make it myself with the help of my father (who is not Jewish). I loved that my father was involved in something that is so special and important within the Jewish ceremony. The chuppah was made of four birch poles given to us by someone in the villiage I grew up in, and the canopy was a tallis that Craig’s Grandmother had bought for us in Jerusalem.
Our chuppah was held up by each of our brothers and two of Craig’s best friends, which was really lovely as it meant they could be close to us during the ceremony.
We also decided that it would be a great start to the ceremony for the boys to walk down the aisle holding the chuppah up before we made our entrance.
A picture of my mum
I knew that there were going to be times during the day that I would find difficult not having my mum present, particularly the wedding ceremony, so decided to have my favourite picture of her framed and sat on the first seat of the front row so that I could look over and see her during the ceremony. It was really comforting and helped calm my nerves.
Our music choice
We were unsure whether or not to have a cantor singing for our wedding ceremony, but after meeting Cantor Jason Green we were so blown away by his amazing voice we knew straight away that we had to have him there on the day. He sang Erev Shel Shoshanim as I walked down the aisle, and I can honestly say it is the most beautiful song I have ever heard. Many a tear was shed.
Blush pink and white flowers
I wanted our flowers to reflect the lovely soft blush colour of the bridesmaids dresses, so the florist, Pip Lowe Flowers, did a fantastic job in finding the perfect match of flowers and mixing them with white to create a stunning overall look. As the bridesmaids all had different styles of dress, they also wore matching gypsophilia flower crowns made by the florist which really pulled together their look.
Our fabulous photographer
Our photographer, Laura Babb, was absolutely fantastic and really captured the day exactly as we remembered it. When we received the final pics from Laura, she suggested we sit down together the first time we view, crack open a bottle of bubbly and listen to our favourite music while watching as a slide show. This was such a fun idea and really brought back so many memories from the day. Laura came with her husband who was also a photographer and between them captured managed to capture every moment of the day – even the bits we may have missed!
Not a video but… a marryoke!
We decided to go for something a little different with our wedding video and opted for a music wedding video – also known as marryoke! It was so much fun and all our guests loved getting involved in the making of the video. We had some serious laughs when we watched it back after the wedding.
(See the marryoke film at the end of the post!)
A naked Victoria Sponge cake
We had the most beautiful naked victoria sponge cake by Bee’s Bakery, topped with cutest hand-made paper flower cake topper that a dear friend of mine made for us.
Our first dance
We were both a little apprehensive about our first dance and wanted to do a little more than just sway along to our favourite song on the big day, so decided it would be a good idea to have a couple of lessons beforehand. We were lucky enough to find the most amazing Argentinian Tango dancer called Alexandra Wood (who has worked on Strictly Come Dancing no less!) to help us put something together. I must say that, not only did this make our first dance a lot less daunting, it also gave us some really special and fun times together in the lead up to the wedding learning the moves and practicing together.
Music was definitely one the most important elements of the day, as we really wanted to have a really fun party vibe.
We used Creation DJ Live and they definitely got the party started! The dance floor wasn’t empty for a single moment thanks to their incredible performances. They are a seriously talented bunch of musicians and performers and even sang our first dance song live which was Ho Hey by The Lumineers.
Miniature bottles of pink champagne
For our wedding favours I designed and made personalised little labels with our names and date of the wedding on for miniature bottles of pink champagne. I also hand tied little striped straws to each so that guests could pop them open and drink as they danced!
Advice to brides and grooms currently planning their wedding
My main piece of advice for future brides would be to ask for help when you need it! People actually love be given a task or role within your wedding as it makes them feel a real part of the day and makes it more enjoyable for everyone, including you.
Yvonne and Craig’s little white book
Photographer – Babb Photo
Wedding planner – Liz Linkleter
Venue – Micklefield Hall and The Great Barn
Bride’s dress – Annasul Y bought at Morgan Davies Bridal
Bride’s shoes – Rupert Sanderson
Groom’s shoes – Grenson
Flowers – Pip Lowe Flowers
Bridesmaid bracelet – Monica Vinader
DJ Live – Creation DJ Live
Cantor – Cantor Jason Green
Cake – Bee’s Bakery
Tango class – Alexandra Wood
Marryoke – Spoolfrog