Good morning wedding lovelies, another Wednesday is upon us, which means another real wedding installment from me. Today we meet Eliska and Tim who married at Ashdown Park Hotel, one unseasonably warm September day last year.
“We first met in the not so romantic spot of Kabul in Afghanistan,” remembers Eliska. “Tim was working out there, and a mutual client had recommended his company base to me for a sales trip I was undertaking. We were officially introduced, and he kept it very business like – but I was instantly attracted to his lovely smile, and gorgeous blue eyes,” she smiles.
“Tim popped the question to me just before returning home to the UK for Christmas. We were out for dinner at our favourite restaurant, Pier Chic in Dubai. Although I was half expecting it, what surprised me was the effort he had gone to, to get me my dream ring. He’d had the princess-cut diamond handmade specially for me by a jewellery expert in Dubai,” explains Eliska.
“My dress was a UK find, made bespoke for me by Emma Tindley Designs. It was fantastic to be able to work with someone who could really personalise my dress. I asked for a sweetheart neckline and a fitted corset. We also changed the silk underneath to a Champagne colour, with a beautiful Chantilly lace overlay, and matching lace jacket.”
Handsome groom Tim bought his morning suit from Pakeman Catto & Carter. The couple’s bridesmaids; Eliska’s best friend Sam, and her God-daughter Lucy wore heavenly purple-silk dresses, handmade by a specialist seamstress in Dubai.
The couple’s marriage service was a simple civil ceremony – with personalised vows. Tim’s brother Jim, and Eliska’s good friend Alex performed readings, while a string quartet (String of Pearls Quartet) serenaded guests before, during and after the service.
“Kim from Lil Guy made all our stationery. We used Tim’s regimental mascot, an Indian elephant, along with our initials in gold. We also used cities from Afghanistan for our table names to signify the importance of where we met,” recalls Eliska.
“I wanted something different for our cake, and went with a rose shape design, created by Terri Simmons of Cakes By Design. Our favours were also quite unique. We had individual heart chocolates in ivory and gold boxes, but also filled Arabian wooden boxes with Scottish Tablet made in Dubai, featuring camel milk and figs. We left one box on each table for our guests to try. I wanted to offer something special from Dubai where we now live, plus my parents used to be confectioners, and they were making Tablet themselves some 30 years ago!”
To top off a truly magical day, Eliska arranged one last, very special surprise for their guests. “I absolutely love Spitfires, and had secretly arranged an air display from Carolyn Grace. She performed an amazing Spitfire display in front of the crowd, accompanied by the String Quartet playing a mixture of songs including Dambusters, Land Of Hope and Glory, and Rule Britannia. Everyone loved it, we’ve had so many cards and emails since the wedding, from guests saying it was the highlight and had made the day truly memorable,” remembers Eliska.
Wedding co-ordination and planning by Eleganza Weddings
Photography courtesy of Peter Prior