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by Emma Hla

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Images by Benni Carol Photography.

Pembroke Lodge was one of the very first wedding venues I viewed when I was researching potential locations for these very pages… Not only is this gorgeous house set in quite a spectacular park, but the venue exudes a happy energy and I just adore the weddings that take place here.

Teachers, Alex & Simon, knew Pembroke Lodge was the only one for them and they married during half term on 28th May last year.

Notes from the Bride

Alex:

We chose Pembroke Lodge as I grew up in Richmond Borough and I wanted to get married close to home. Simon and I both love the park and we loved the lodge straight away. We also really liked the way in which we could do everything in the same venue. We only saw one venue and decided it was a yes immediately!

The team were so welcoming and they even agreed to create a bespoke dish of Chicken Milanese with spaghetti (Italian cuisine is our favourite!). It was amazing! The attention to detail and the way they looked after us at Pembroke Lodge was second to none.

When I first saw the dress it was at a wedding fair with my Mum, Simon’s Mum, my Sister Harriet and Simon’s Sister Emily. Both had agreed to be my Bridesmaids. It was a classic dress, which reminded me a little of an Empire line dress and I’m a big Jane Austen fan. I mentioned that I had an appointment the following week at Ellie Sanderson in Beaconsfield and they made sure the dress I had seen was available to try on. I loved it! I particularly loved the fact that it was two dresses; one simple classic strapless dress with a lace overlay which could be removed but which had capped sleeves, perfect for a May wedding.

I chose to wear a headpiece made by Lilly Bella which was originally a hair vine sewn onto a headband for me due to my short hair. I wore diamond stud earrings, a present from my Dad’s late best friend who I know would loved to have been there, and his wife.

I wore pale blue undies from Myla and Simon gave me a garter as a present on the morning of the big day.

My make-up was by Amy who works with Kristina Gasperas. She was really relaxed and listened really carefully to all of my requests. I felt very natural and definitely myself.

Harriet and Emily both wore a light blue/ pale lilac dress from Coast and nude shoes of their choice with pearl stud earrings. Simon wore a blue three-piece suit from Reiss, as did his Brother and Best Man, Nick. My Mum sourced her outfit from Katherine Hooker and, as she’s so petite, had a bespoke dress and jacket made especially for the big day.

The favours were 10 of our favourite recipes wrapped around our hand-painted (by both families!) wooden spoons for every guest- with baby spoons for the 3 babes in arms.

The theme was Bridges. Simon proposed on Hammersmith Bridge and we decided to have our cake designed with lots of the world bridges that we had crossed together – Jen’s Cakery designed us a bespoke Skyline cake based on this theme of Bridges. These also became our table names which were designed by Brooke at Wolf Whistle Studio. The great thing about all of our suppliers or people we worked with was that we did our research, got in touch, arranged a meeting and went for it. We never met up with anyone we didn’t go ahead and book with; this included the venue choice (and almost the dress) so it was a wedding of ‘go with the first’ for every decision!

We collected glass jars and vintage glass for the table decorations for flowers. Helmer, my Mum’s Columbian florist who runs Flowers by Cymbidium, did an amazing job and designed the flowers with some our key spring flowers in mind. We also had fresh herbs in the bouquets and table decorations to tie in with the spring garden and food theme.

For the venue itself we hired cream chivari chairs from iAM Wedding Hire and we added a few pastel coloured pom poms to the aisles. We decorated a ‘Beale’s Grocers’ box which Simon already had for our cards and we set up a table with all the photos of our parents and grandparents on their respective wedding days at the entrance. We also sourced 3 giant round balloons to add to the effect.

Benni & Carolina the photographers were incredible and made us feel so at ease. We did a short photo shoot with them in October in Richmond park before the big day and on the day they were great;  they visited Simon and I getting ready and took care of the rest. We loved all of the photos so much we had to have them all.

Best Part of the Day…

It’s hard to say what the best part of the day would be! It was all great from start to finish! I suppose it was lovely just to have one big party in our honour where everyone present was someone we loved and cared about.

Words of Wedded Wisdom…

My words of wisdom would definitely be to do everything together and make decisions together about the day so that everything is the way you both want it. Simon and I agreed on most things and dealt with things quickly and efficiently so that it did not take over our lives too much and so that we enjoyed the planning and making decisions. We made sure we informed everyone what we wanted so we could just enjoy the day.

Credits

Venue Pembroke Lodge | Photography Benni Carol Photography | Flowers Flowers by Cymbidium | Cake Jen’s Cakery | Stationery Wolf Whistle Studio | Magician Neb | Giant Letters The Word is Love | Bride’s Dress ‘Jessica’ by Sassi Holford from Ellie Sanderson | Hairvine Lilly Bella | Make-up Amy at Kristina Gasperas | DJ Mighty Fine Entertainment | Mother-of-the-Bride Katherine Hooker | Chairs iAM Wedding Hire | Balloons Bubblegum Balloons.

Thank you to Alex & Simon for sharing their b-e-a-u-t-iful day! Oh and Benni Carol Photography for capturing it so wonderfully.

You can discover Pembroke Lodge on our directory!

Lots of love…

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