05 Feb REAL WEDDING ~ Sophie & Todd
Like many of my wonderful wedding supplier friends, one of my 2017 resolutions is to blog more which means it’s finally time to keep that promise and share with you some of the beautiful weddings I had the pleasure of planning in 2016. My first couple officially on the Claire Clarke Weddings books after launching in April 2016 was Sophie & Todd and I’m so excited to finally be able to share the real wedding story of this beautiful couple.
Sophie and Todd approached me a few months into their planning journey and although they had carefully chosen some wonderful suppliers themselves, with busy lifestyles they needed help pulling together the final details in the lead up to their big day. I usually find that every couple is looking for a bespoke planning option so a slight extension of my ‘finer details’ service was the perfect match for their requirements.
With Todd in the military and with such close family connections, the couple opted for a beautifully traditional summer wedding in the bride’s family home deep in the Suffolk countryside. Sophie wanted to keep the decor clean and simple and really pre-empted the 2017 Pantone colour of the year as all florals were kept simple and elegant in whites and greens. Tolly’s Flowers did a wonderful job at bringing Sophie’s vision to reality and this hanging floral masterpiece created the most amazing focal point for guests who entered the marquee later that day.
While the groomsmen met in a local village pub for the final send off, the bridal party had hair and make up flawlessly applied by Victoria Percival in the relaxed environment of the family home. A neutral grey (I don’t know about you but I love grey for a wedding!!) was chosen for the beautiful bridesmaids and the flowing design of these David’s Bridal multi-way dresses suited the girls perfectly.
Sophie chose a structured Amanda Wakeley gown from their shop on Fulham Road, London and with its off the shoulder sleeves and an architectural neckline, this slimline shape suited her tiny frame wonderfully. With shoes from Kurt Geiger, a classic tiara by Ivory & Co, and a pair of diamond and sapphire earrings, (a gift Todd bought for her) Sophie wowed all of us when she glided downstairs to reveal the finished look.
Sophie’s parents vintage Land Rover was used to transport the bridal party to the guests waiting with anticipation at the beautiful St. Andrew’s Church and Nick Tucker really couldn’t have captured the fun the girls experienced during this journey any better; I simply LOVE these photos!
A bit of a sideline, but while talking of Nick Tucker, I have to say, wow… what talent. I would highly recommend this relaxed style of documentary wedding photography to couples and with a background in writing, Nick tends to tell a story with his photos which I am sure you’ll agree he does perfectly in this set he’s created for Sophie and Todd.
Todd, who wore his mess kit for their big day, wore his uniform with pride and looked like the ‘cat who got the cream’ when he saw his bride walking towards him (as did Sophie when she saw her man in uniform!!). A Shakespeare sonnet and a passage from the Song of Solomon was chosen for their ceremony readings and their wedding rings were made by Todd’s uncle- a very personal touch for the ring exchange.
Jack Brock (yes, this pony has a full name!!) was hired from The Garden Box and kitted up with little baskets to hand out confetti to the much bemused guests (These baskets of confetti were later replaced with Prosecco making Jack an amazing commodity at the garden reception). Nick beautifully captured not only the most amazing confetti shots but also the military crossed sword tradition that welcomed Sophie and Todd as they left St Andrew’s Church.
Guests were welcomed back to Sophie’s family home and directed along a beautiful tree adorned walkway, through a whimsical gate and into relaxed garden with an elegant marquee by Cambridge Marquees set up on the grounds. Tricycle Tempations provided the Pimms while Jack the pony continued to circulate with Prosecco. Martin Kolarides entertained guests on his guitar while Anna Shutes Catering circulated with canapes including my favourite- cocktail sausages served in mini apple crates to add the rustic charm.
Marquee weddings always allow for a blank canvas and Sophie and Todd really got to work to create something special in theirs. Working with Tolly’s Flowers, they created what can only be described as a whimsical and elegant decor with flowers hanging from the marquee ceiling and a mixture of green foliage and candlesticks intertwined along the long trestle tables. I love long tables and 2016 saw a huge trend for these over rounds to create a relaxed vibe to the wedding breakfast.
The wedding cake was a red velvet creation made by the couples friend Emily Custins and individual bottles of sloe gin were given to guests as wedding favours. A sprig of rosemary was added as a final touch and tucked inside the napkins which filled the room with a gorgeous smell as guests entered.
The speeches kicked off as soon as guests were seated and honestly were some of the best I’ve heard and certainly made for some great pictures! Following a traditional wedding breakfast catered by Anna Shutes guests were treated to an open bar (just you wait for the picture results of this!) and a gorgeously rustic cheese buffet!
Now, when it came to entertainment, there was only one option for Sophie. Aside from Todd, her other true love Sophie told me was Tina Turner (!!) meaning a tribute band was the only option for the couple. Via a booking company, Totally Tina, the UK’s number one tribute band, sang the couple’s first dance ‘Addicted to Love’. Although not an obvious choice and far from being traditional, the crowd were well and truly wowed and partied the evening away with ‘Tina’ and her dancers followed by the DJ set from Blackjack Wedding discos.
Nick, I think these photos are my absolute favourite of the day… I feel like i’m there listening to ‘Tina Turner Proud Mary’ all over again!
I hope, like these guests in the final pictures, you had fun reading this real wedding blog of my first official Claire Clarke Wedding?!
Sophie and Todd, I can not thank you enough for having me as a trusted supplier for your day. Working with you both was an absolute pleasure and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed re-living the memories while writing this long overdue post. Wishing you all the best with married life!