Alexa + Jamie
This meadow wedding was inspired by
fun, festivals and bohemian spirit…
PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAN SAKAL, D&A PHOTOGRAPHY
Alexa and Jamie’s love kindled after they met via dating app, Tinder, just before the end of 2013. Spending their third date paddle boarding with their Labrador, Roscoe, set the tone for their relationship. “Six months into our relationship, we went to the Azores on Jamie’s dad’s yacht so I could learn to sail.
“We spent two weeks’ stormbound on the yacht and after that we figured we knew each other well enough to spend the rest of our lives together!”
If that didn’t do it, the four months we then spent travelling and working on a tight budget in India, Nepal, Bangladesh and Burma certainly brought us closer than some people ever are!
We got engaged while walking our dog on the beach, just metres from the church we would be married in. The master plan had been to paddle board out to an island for a picnic and the proposal, but the weather hampered Jamie’s grand plans. He proposed with the most perfect cushion-cut diamond, having it set simply so I could alter it to my tastes (and add a few more tiny diamonds!).”
With a mission to find a dress she could dance, run and play meadow games in, Alexa set out to find it at Catherine Deane’s London showroom.
“I took my mother, Jamie’s mum and his step mum, knowing that I would find my dream dress that day.”
The gown I chose was so relaxed and easy to wear with beautiful vintage-style lace; the perfect balance of being slightly boho and still so pretty. There are so many stunning wedding dresses out there, but the one I chose just felt so natural.
My veil also came from Catherine Deane, it’s a tradition that I love, and it had pearl-style beads to trim the edges.
I added a handmade sparkly belt to pull the dress together. Low-heeled lace boots from Harriet Wilde were my choice for the day, with a pair of flats on hand for the evening.”
“Alexa’s tribal style Swarovski crystal earrings came from New York-based boutique jeweller, Lionette, and she sourced her bracelets from Wanderlust Life, an independent jeweller in Devon whose bohemian pieces she has loved and worn for years.”
Jamie wore a grey-blue suit from Ted Baker, teamed with brown brogues from Sole Trader with added blue laces. “I gifted him a smart belt from Elliot Rhodes that was embossed with our initials and wedding date.”
Four bridesmaids joined the bride as she walked down the aisle. They glowed in colourful Anthropologie gowns with pretty beaded necklines. “I just wanted something romantic and not too bridesmaid-y,” explains Alexa, “and these dresses were really unique with an easily adjustable hemline. The girls picked their own shoes and the overall look had a thrown together, mix and match vibe to it.”
“The couple’s civil ceremony took place on Mersea Island, where the couple live, just steps from the beach, and the service readings included The Song of Solomon, ‘Fidelity’ by DH Lawrence and Taylor Mali’s ‘How Falling in Love is Like Owning a Dog’ – an apt choice as this couple’s Labrador was their ring bearer!”
Jamie’s stepfather then flew them by helicopter to the meadow reception.
And after the journey? “We were very lucky to have Linda Hamilton Catering create our wedding breakfast with a laid-back feel and dishes we love to eat. This included
a barbecue of Thai-marinated steak, soy, sesame and ginger salmon, and mozzarella aubergine pesto stacks. We were happy for the accompanying speeches to be quite traditional, but the best men and a good friend had other ideas when they became a fantastic band in fancy dress for theirs. They’d practiced a few times in a van beforehand and sang a couple of hilarious songs about Jamie and I!”
The wedding reception was held in the meadow of the bride’s parent’s farm, so they had free reign when it came to decoration. Events Under Canvas supplied the tipis and kung, as well as glamping tents for afterwards, ready to bring Alexa’s fun-filled vision of a relaxed festival vibe to life. “The tipis came with lots of fairylights and festoon lighting, and we homemade the rest to keep to our budget.
“Our mothers made endless paper pompoms; we strung up Nepalese prayer flags, and the paper cranes were a real team effort!”
Jamie built the bar himself with the help of a friend, made an illuminated heart and even the wooden ‘LOVE’ letters.”
Finding their perfect just-picked English wild flowers was a wonderful experience thanks to Patrick Cadman of The Country Garden Flower Company.
“He walked us through rows of flowers, picking some and tucking them into my hand until I had the colourful posy I had imagined but been unable to put into words.”
They added wild flowers as centrepieces in vintage vases and jars, also suspending jars of blooms from the beams for 360-degree decoration.
C E R E M O N Y St Peter and St Paul, Mersea
R E C E P T I O N V E N U E Events Under Canvas DRESS Catherine Deane
B R I D E S M A I D D R E S S E S Anthropologie
G R O O M Ted Baker, Sole Trader and Elliot Rhodes
A C C E S S O R I E S Harriet Wilde and Wanderlust Life
S T A T I O N E R Y The Card Gallery
C A T E R I N G Linda Hamilton Catering
F L O W E R S The Country Garden Flower Company
H O N E Y M O O N Red Spokes