Welcome, the gorgeous Emma and Steve on the blog today!
Emma and Steve were in the same corners of the world since school but never knew each other until they were reunited as adults at a mutual friends gathering!
Emma and Steve married on the 27th March at Dulwich Gallery. They were really keen to have an informal and authentic celebration that reflected their family history, British and African roots, in a day that fully represented them too, as South Londoners!
With the historical and trendy Dulwich as their backdrop, Emma and Steve chose to change-up the traditional wedding formula, to suit their personal taste and to make sure guests were in for a night of merriment and laughter.
You are in for a treat today as they were clever and lucky enough to choose the brilliant Daria from Plenty to declare weddings as their photographer. As you will have notices she is one of my favourite, passionate and beautifully humble photographer’s and her work speaks for itself.
Daria was incredible. Once again, we didn’t want formal photos we wanted to see the interaction between guests. Daria achieved this incredibly. We spend hours looking at our photos and never get bored. Struggling to choose which ones to put on our wall, our flat isn’t big enough to put all 500 up! Emma and Steve
Over to Emma and Steve!
I didn’t expect it at all.
Mainly because the cocktail making course was a gift from Christmas 2013 and the proposal came in April 2014. So I didn’t see a connection. Having said that, we had discussed marriage so I did know that he would propose, one day…
Steve proposed straight after our Shakers and Co cocktail making course. He didn’t propose in front of people (he knows that I would’ve hated that), so he picked a quiet moment. Of course, I thought he was joking until he pulled out this “stand in” ring so that I could pick what I wanted at a later date. (I worked in jewellery industry so he didn’t want to choose the wrong ring).
Of course, as soon as I could speak, I said yes.
I burst into tears, he wanted us to go for a top-notch dinner, but we settled for fish and chips at The Golden Hind, Marylebone, one of the oldest restaurants in London accompanied with ‘bring your own’ bottle of Prosecco from Tesco – I loved it! (Nu Bride: Perfect!!!)
We had difficulty finding cultural representation while planning and decided to take inspiration from family history instead.
We wanted a wedding that reflected our history, London, European and mixed heritage, to encourage (not force) people to be friends and to have a celebration where it was relaxed and fun from start to finish.
I’d loved a stately home but it didn’t feel true to me having said that, I still wanted a beautiful and grand wedding so we decided to have an evening wedding in Dulwich where my father grew up and Steven’s parents grew up around the area.
As my mother is from Southern Africa (and family would be unable to attend) we wanted her family to be present so we decided to focus on photos of friends and family who could and couldn’t be there.
We kept the ceremony formal at the Gallery, which is an independent charity trust exhibiting Baroque art. We wanted to donate charity especially one that allows art to be affordable to those who want to see it).
The Gallery is grand and full of religious art. This was very important to an African wedding and was our biggest “nod” culture and religion that we had.
We held our drinks reception and speeches immediately after our ceremony at Dulwich gallery
We held our reception at the Rosendale Pub, a true authentic London venue.
The Pub allowed used to hang photos of all of our guests and provided a talking point (it was amazing to see people who didn’t know each other discussing all the family and friend moments). It was very simple.
We chose not to have a sit down meal. Yes, shocking I know! Which caused a few challenges.
A sit down meal is “conventional” so guests were surprised that we decided to not have a formal meal. The logistics surrounding a sit down meal is the easy part (in our opinion). It’s the “forced fun and conversation” that we wanted to avoid for our guests and opted for something more relaxed. We also wanted to fast forward to the celebration i.e. the party!
We really wanted our family and guests to truly feel part of day and chose to have a family photo wall displayed at the pub.
Our guests could see their importance in our lives through our memories and then laugh with one another when recounting the stories.
The art at the Gallery, during the drinks reception, gave everyone a talking point. Not only the history of the art but the cross over in cultures within the family of those who came. We had guests from Spain, America, Ireland, South Africa – the list goes on.
The photos at the pub were our informal version of the gallery but featuring all of our guests.
One of your favourite moments was at our at our pub reception when our friends and family had a dance off.
We chose Arctic Monkey dancing shoes for our first dance.
Top Wedding Tips
1. Do what you want
2. Break the norm
3. Stand back every hour and watch so you don’t miss the day.
Congratulations gorgeous Emma and Steve – some lovely ideas to include your guests and explore and honour family and cultural traditions through picture and art. Lovely. Thank you for sharing your wedding with Nu Bride readers! I adore it as will they!
The TalentPhotography: Plenty to Declare Photography Venue: Ceremony: Dulwich Gallery | Reception: The Rosendale Pub, Dulwich Brides Fashion:
The Dress: Brides Revisited
Shoes: Nine West
Jewellery & Accessories: Warrenders Sutton
Hair: Sandra Swaby Make-Up: Faye Hopping Bridesmaids Fashion:
Bridesmaid Dresses: Coast
Bridesmaid Shoes: Kurt Geiger Grooms & Groomsmen Fashion:
Suit: Suit Supply Entertainment: Saxophonist: Ike Leo | Band: The Honeymooners Cake and sweet things: Keith Davis – Pastry Chef
Flowers & décor: Jeanette Phillpott Decor: Escape Events
Food: The Rosendale Pub, Dulwich Stationery & Favours: White Print