There's quite often a key decision in planning a wedding from which all other decisions naturally follow and happily fall in to place. For Carole and Adrian, this was the choice of their venue.
Carole and Adrian got engaged on New Years Eve 2011 in Dubai on the Palm at the Sandance Beach Party: Adrian had planned to pop the question on a sunset boat trip in Boracay, Philippines but it ended up being on the way back at a stop over in Dubai. The couple then made the decision to go ahead and get married that year (by then it was 2012… the difference a few hours makes!) and started to seek out venues.
They finally found the venue of their dreams in late March 2013 – the only catch being that there was only one available date that year and that was in July so left a mere 3-months to plan everything.
Kensington Roof Gardens, which was the venue that they chose, was simply perfect for them: It encapsulated everything that they wanted for their wedding: the venue was grown up and glamorous, and, despite being in central London, there was no traffic noise and the exotic planting and the beautiful outside space reminded them of their holidays, The ambience of the venue was informal and relaxed which gave them the sense of intimacy that they craved. And, as it is also a nightclub, it ensured there was plenty of cocktails and champagne at the ready (the sparkling wine was supplied by a family member's vineyard in Dorset, keeping thing personal again) making it the perfect place for them to celebrate their wedding with their friends and family.
Talking to Carole, it's clear that the most important aspect to their day, was quite simply, that it was about them. About what made them who they are, and about their lives as a couple. When choosing her dress and accessories she wanted to chose pieces that reflected her, and made her look her, but at her best, not like she was trying to be someone else. The couple had no real theme to start with as they simply wanted to choose their flowers, food because they loved them: from the Peony's that Carole loves which formed her bouquet, to the speeches, one of which was made by Lorraine, Carole's best friend and bridesmaid, every decision that they made was true to them and the people that they are. Readings were chosen because they meant something and reminded them of their childhoods rather than the more traditional pieces.
That said, the 1920s art deco styling of the venue, and the flamingos in the garden helped pull together the finished styling for the day, from the bespoke Flamingo invitations, table plan (tables were all named after the couples' holiday destinations) and favours, to the beautiful vintage inspired gown. Above all, what the couple wanted was for everyone 'to have the best time'. Overall, the vibe for the day was grown up glamour, fabulous flamingos and them, which sounds like a pretty fabulous theme to us.
A key decision in any brides' wedding day is The Dress. We don't use capital letters lightly: we are firm believers that there is one dress that makes every women feel perfect: themselves, but their best. Carole knew that she wanted an English designer and found the dress of her dreams – Eden by Jenny Packham. It was grown up, glamorous and not traditional, which were key to Carole's choice. However, it was completely different to what she had pictured herself wearing: there was no structure, no corset: when she had pictured glamorous and grown up, this dress had not been it. In fact it took the purchase of another dress and four visits to the shop, for her to realise that this dress was in fact The Dress. Whereupon she hurriedly returned the purchased dress and bought the one she had always known (deep down) that was meant for her.
Carole kept the glamourse feel throughout all of her accessories choices to complement her look on the day, I adore her Jimmy Choo's and look at this adorable red heart on the sole.
The non traditional but glamorous style was carried through to the choice of cakes which were meticulously decorated and personalised individual designs (and tasted delicious). The first dance was choreographed to 'It had to be You', which just added to the sense of old school glamour.
For anyone who remembers last summer, rain was pretty much a feature on a daily basis. But not on this day. St Swithin got it well and truly wrong: there was no rain on the 15th July, but it rained for the rest of the summer instead. Which was lucky for Carole and Adrian, as so much of their wedding was outside.
The most important thing of all of course was not that the sun shone, but that Carole and Adrian had the day that they wanted, that was true to them, and was quite simply, a wonderful and beautiful celebration of their love for one another. Carole's advice from planning the wedding echoes this: to make sure you keep true to you, and who you are. Music might not start at the right time, but nobody notices, and it all comes together. Make decisions and choices that reflect you, and you will have the day you dreamt of.
Thanks so much for sharing your story and beautiful images with Love Scarlett x.
Carole and Adrian's little Black Book
Wedding Photography Anushe Low
Location & Catering The Roof Gardens
Event Planning & Design Carole, supported by The Roof Gardens
Music DJ provided by The Roof Gardens & also we booked The Kevin Fitzsimmons Band
Flowers: Lesley Martin (a friend) for button holes, bouquets and ceremony flowers. The table centrepieces were by Hayford & Rhodes
Cake: Konditor & Cook
Stationery Wendy Bell Designs
Linens: The Roof Gardens
Favours Cakes by Robin, London Cake Company
Gown Eden by Jenny Packham
Bride's Shoes Jimmy Choo
Brides accessories Jenny Packham
Groom's Suit Richard James
Hair & make-up Gemma Sutton
Photography by Anushe Low
Words by Harriet Rouse Love Scarlett