With Christmas just around the corner we thought we’d share a festive inspired real wedding this week. Abigail and Chris, along with the help of their family were able to create one of the most elegant Christmas themed weddings we’ve ever seen. We love everything from her stunning 1920’s inspired wedding dress, to the well designed and styled wedding reception, all of which were beautifully captured by Douglas Fry. Grab yourself some mulled wine and enjoy this week’s real Christmas wedding.
Bride and Groom… Abigail and Chris
Wedding date… Friday 27th December 2013
We met… In a bar when I first moved to Hong Kong. We were introduced by an old friend of mine who was dating an old friend of Chris’, they also recently got married.
The proposal… We discussed getting married at Pizza Express on a normal Wednesday night in October 2012 but Chris actually proposed on Christmas eve in my home town of Stamford after asking my dad for his permission.
We knew it was ‘the one’… Really quickly, he felt like an old friend from the first time I met him and everything felt easy and exactly as it should be. I think we both knew within a month or so. We moved in together after 3 months and got engaged within the year.
Length of engagement… 1 year and 3 days!
My dress was from… Le Spose Di Gio. I knew the shop I wanted to go to as I had been with Camilla my bridesmaid when she was looking for a dress and liked so many of their styles. The shop Le Spose Di Gio is in London and they do very simple, elegant dresses focused on the fabric and the cut. I knew I didn’t want a big meringue style dress and I wanted something a bit more old fashioned and glamorous. When I tried it on I was pretty sure it was the dress for me. I went to a few other shops but then came back to the first one I had tried on. As it was Christmas time and cold I was also able to add some extra glamour with a fur shawl and a great fascinator style headpiece. I wanted elegant, simple but with a bit of glamour and Christmas sparkle.
Our bridesmaids were… My sister and my oldest friend from school Philippa, my friend from University Camilla, my closest friend from when I lived in London Claire and my friend from Hong Kong Gail. The girls had pretty glamorous sparkly black dresses and black fur shawls , they all looked gorgeous. I also had my baby niece Matilda who was just 3 months old, my niece Zoe and Camilla’s daughter Daisy as flower girls in beautiful white dresses from Monsoon.
Our wedding ceremony was... In my home town of Stamford at All Saints Church. We had a lovely sunny morning for our wedding so although it was very cold it was bright and crisp. We had 110 people in total at the ceremony and reception. Our actual wedding was really lovely in the gorgeous old church in the middle of the town. One of my oldest and closest friends, Harriet did a reading she wrote for us which was so special (she is a very talented journalist working for the Telegraph and was in Hong Kong when we first met), my brother read Corinthians 13 in his wonderful deep voice and Chris’ oldest friend was due to read a very funny poem that we loved called Love Me by Bee Rawlinson that we had heard at her wedding. Chloe actually got stuck in Ireland trying to make it over so one of Chris’ ushers Rob stepped in and did the honours.
Our wedding photographer was… Douglas Fry who was also the photographer at my sisters wedding. We wanted a photographer who would fit in with our day and capture the special moments that we might not see. We wanted real photos of the people we loved and were not too concerned about having a lot of formal posed group shots. Douglas did a wonderful job and was with us the whole day and well into the night when the party really got going!
Our wedding reception… At The George Hotel in Stamford. We were very lucky to be able to hold the wedding there as they are very popular at Christmas time and do not normally allow weddings in December. The George is a wonderful old hotel that really comes alive at Christmas and they decorate it amazingly so the setting was brilliant. We put up a marquee with a black star cloth roof in the garden and it was such a magical setting. I have always known I wanted to get married at The George, it is where my parents got married and my sister too and it is where we have celebrated so many of our family events from 21st birthdays to 50th and 60th birthdays as well as graduations, engagements and now all of our weddings as well.
Our wedding theme was… A simple, elegant Christmas wedding. We used black, cream and a lot of gold and green. We avoided too much red as I didn’t want it to feel a bit of a cliché Christmas wedding. We were also so lucky that my very talented sister and brother in law who run Basil and Ford designed so much for us from our invitations through to our table numbers and gorgeous hand printed 12 days of Christmas wedding favour tea towels. We used the 12 days of Christmas as a background theme and used this as part of our invitations, table numbers and favours and we also got Chris’ brother, dad, my brother and brother in law who arranged a group to sing along to the 12 days of Christmas mid way through the wedding breakfast which was absolutely brilliant. We got married on the 2nd day of Christmas so we made reference to the 2 turtle doves which was my sisters idea.
Our wedding was unique and special because… The work my sister and brother in law at Bail and Ford did made the wedding very distinctive. The wedding invitations were all hand printed and the theme they created continued right through the day with so many lovely touches. They are so talented and a lot of people commented on the work they did for the do.
Our favourite part of the wedding was… Everything. I loved so much of our day. We wanted to have a relaxed, fun day and a great party and that is exactly what we had. We hope everyone had as much fun as we did . I think a few key highlights were the readings in church which were so special, my gorgeous bridesmaids and flower girls especially my baby niece Matilda being part of our day, so many of our wonderful friends traveling from Hong Kong, Scotland and Ireland. The 12 days of Christmas sing along with Chris’ brother on the trumpet, his dad on the French horn and Matt and Sam leading the singing was just so much fun and when I looked around to see everyone on their chairs singing along I felt a burst of pure happiness and felt like the luckiest girl in the world.
What is your advice for other brides? Would be to try and enjoy it all as at times it can feel very overwhelming and like there is so much to do but then when it’s over you sort of wish you still had it to plan and look forward to. Also to try and take a few moments during the day to just stop and realise it is your wedding day. The day goes by in such a blur and we sort of ran around the whole day and then before we knew it the whole thing was over and we were waking up with hangovers and wondering how it all went so quickly! I was also very lucky to have my sister involved who did such a wonderful job helping me get everything organised which made the world of difference.
Wedding Dress: Le Spose Di Gio | Wedding Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Wedding Suits: Richmonds in Stamford | Bridesmaid Dresses: John Lewis | Wedding Flowers: Marino Straker | Wedding Entertainment: 29 Fingers | Wedding Photographer: Douglas Fry | Wedding Cake: The Cheese Shop, Stamford | Wedding Make-up: Shima Hossaini and Liza Smith | Wedding Stationery: Basil and Ford | Wedding Venue: All Saints Church, Stamford | Ceremony Venue: The George Hotel of Stamford | Wedding Venue stylist/planner: Jodie Bloomer the wedding planner at The George and my sister Lucy Glen at Basil and Ford | Wedding Gift list: John Lewis and Mr and Mrs Smith