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An effortlessly elegant, brilliant family focused wedding in London with Colin Clay Photography

I love today’s wedding for it’s classy sense of difference: there’s nothing normal or ordinary about Kate and Steve’s London wedding, and yet it’s as elegant as any wedding, ever, without trying to be quirky… the mark of a couple whose style and grace makes everything just fall into place beautifully.

An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (14)

Kate – today’s timelessly graceful and beautiful bride – and her husband Steve have been together for years and their wedding focused on friends and family. They still forget they’re married… and yet this wedding in its uniqueness will stick in my mind for a long time. I love to see a day which is different.

An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (11)

One of my favourite things about today is Kate’s interview (at the end of the feature). Very often brides write LOTS about their dress, and add a very brief note about the groom’s attire or bridesmaids / flower girls. Kate though… and I LOVE this… gives a resounding ‘nah…’ + one line to my question about her dress (which is stunning!) but writes 3 LINES about her adorable son (Batman bowtie – awesome!!) and daughter (sparkly shoes – awww!!).

An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (20)

Images shown on today’s blog feature are by lovely Colin Clay Photography. Colin
is a London based wedding photographer whose images have a modern & artistic look – perfect for Kate & Steve! Colin was working as a second shooter alongside Marshal Gray Photography on the day, but all the images here are by Colin.

claire gould calligrapher signature
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (1)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (2)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (3)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (4)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (5)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (6)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (7)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (8)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (9)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (10)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (12)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (13)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (15)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (16)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (17)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (18)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (19)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (21)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (22)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (23)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (24)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (25)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (26)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (27)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (28)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (29)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (30)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (31)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (32)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (33)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (34)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (35)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (36)
An alternative London wedding at J & A Cafe with images by Colin Clay Photography (37)

Our wedding story: Kate & Steve

Wedding photographer’s website:

www.marshalgrayphotography.com and www.colinclay.com

Were you pleased with your wedding photographer?

Thrilled – I had long admired Marshal Gray’s work, and he brought the brilliant Colin Clay with him as second shooter, so we got two fantastic sets of pictures.

Wedding venue:

Tower Hamlets Register Office, followed by a reception at J&A Café in Clerkenwell.

Wedding date:

7th June 2014

Can you describe your wedding in a single sentence?

Love and sunshine.

What was your reaction to seeing your wedding photos for the first time?

To immediately put them on Facebook!

Your wedding style or theme:

London cheap and cheerful.

How long did you spend planning your wedding?

About a year.

Best bit of budget advice?

Don’t think you have to do everything. We didn’t have bridesmaids, cars, a band, designer outfits etc. Consider what is most important to you (in our case the catering and the photos) and allocate most of your budget accordingly. Keep it simple.

Wedding invitations and on the day stationery:

Invitations were from Vistaprint for £17. We didn’t have any further stationery.

Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?

Nah – it’s only a dress! I really enjoyed wearing it though and it was a complete bargain.

Wedding dress designer and bridal boutique:

The Monsoon sale. The dress was three layers of beautiful heavy silk, which I then had altered for a perfect fit. Including the alterations the dress was £150.

Glitz and sparkle – the bride’s accessories:

I wore my grandmother’s engagement ring, plus a bracelet and earrings given to me previously by Steve. Shoes from Dune.

Suited and booted – the groom wore:

A very nice blue suit from John Lewis and brogues from TK Maxx.

Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?

We didn’t have bridesmaids, although our 2 year old daughter wore a sweet little dress from M&S with sparkly shoes, whilst our son Tom wore a blazer from John Lewis, complete with a Batman bow-tie and a pair of Vans.

Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?

My sisters and I had our hair done at Blow Bar in Islington – I think theirs looked better than mine though! Make-up was DIY.

Wedding flowers:

I ordered a small bouquet of wild flowers and two buttonholes for Steve and Tom from Ascott Gardens in Stroud. The flowers arrived the previous day and were so pretty and delicate.

General styling – did your venue need much decoration?

No – we didn’t decorate at all. J&A Café is the most brilliant place with fantastic big windows and a lovely courtyard where we ate our meal. They supplied some bunting and bought lots of white peonies and candles for the tables. Otherwise the venue speaks for itself and was exactly the simple style we were looking for.

DIY – tell us about any handcrafted elements of your wedding…

Not a lot – I am not the creative type! However my step-mother made our cake and Steve’s very talented sister made our wedding rings.

The wedding cake: traditional or quirky?

Very trad – made by my lovely step-mother.

Entertainment:

I put together some toys and snacks to keep the children busy – the giant sunglasses went down well with kids and adults alike. In the evening we had a DJ and a great big rave up.

On the day tips and advice:

Relax. Don’t stress about the weather. Try and say hello to everyone. Eat something. Don’t drink too much. RELAX!

What’s the best thing about being married?

We had been together 14 years by the time we got married, so in all honesty it hasn’t made a lot of difference. We still forget we are married! But having the wedding to look back on is a very lovely thing.

Quick supplier list for other brides and grooms:

Dress alterations: http://www.imagebymunever.com/

Photos: www.marshalgrayphotography.com and www.colinclay.com

Invitations: http://www.vistaprint.co.uk/

Reception venue: http://jandacafe.com/

Hair: http://www.theblowbar.com/

Flowers: http://www.ascottgardens.co.uk/

Mini-moon! http://www.thedominican.be/default-en.html

Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at www.byMoonandTide.com. Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.

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