Our very own Pippa married her fiancé Chris in the stunning Caribbean, complete with a hot coral wedding theme and a wedding breakfast on the beach! They also celebrated with their friends and family at home by having a chic ivory and navy reception in Somerset…
How they met
Pippa met future husband Chris at a bar in Knightsbridge while she was working at The National Wedding Show in London. “He was so tall so caught my eye!” laughs Pippa. “We chatted all night and I couldn’t wait to see him again.” On the Sunday after the show, Chris picked Pippa up and took her for their first date in Yo! Sushi at Paddington Station before she headed back to Somerset – “it was so unglamorous!” laughs Pippa.
The last thing Pippa was expecting when she took Chris to Venice for his birthday was for him to pop the question! “Chris insisted we went on a romantic gondola ride,” says Pippa. “He speaks fluent Italian so arranged for the driver to sing love songs all the way around – I thought he was bargaining with him!” Halfway through the ride, Chris passed the camera to the driver. “I thought he had spotted a photo opportunity, but he got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife! It was just perfect.”
The bride’s dresses
For her stunning ceremony in Antigua, Pippa wanted a simple but sophisticated dress that would work for the beach. “I went to Ellie Sanderson in Beaconsfield for my first dress,” explains Pippa. “The shop was beautiful and carries some of the best UK designers, so I was spoilt for choice. She was absolutely fantastic!” Pippa chose a slinky Suzanne Neville gown made from bias cut silk – as it was made to measure, Pippa asked for a lower back for a more sultry look. “It was beautiful and really comfortable,” she says. “When I put it on it just felt right!”
For her English reception with friends and family, Pippa visited Wedding Ideas favourites Rob and Andrew at Creatiques Couture in Southsea. “I chose a sparkly fishtail Justin Alexander gown from the Signature collection – it was the perfect party gown,” says Pippa. “I even had the train removed so I could dance all night without it getting trodden on!”
The bride’s accessories
For her beach ceremony, Pippa wore some pretty foot jewellery from Elegant Steps, which added some sparkle without having the hassle of wearing heels on the sand. For her wedding breakfast, the bride simply popped on some beautiful mother-of-pearl high heels from Freya Rose. For her UK celebration, Pippa wore some sparkly heels from Benjamin Adams. “They matched my outfit perfectly and were really comfortable!” She also carried a gorgeous clutch bag from Vintage Styler for all her essentials.
Pippa wore jewellery from Olivier Laudus for both her weddings. To accessorize the fresh orchids and roses in her hair, Pippa wore natural pearl jewellery for her beautiful beach wedding, and chose sparkly diamante earrings and a stunning hair comb for her UK celebration.
The groom’s outfit
Chris splashed out on two wedding suits from Stephen Bishop Suiting – one for each celebration. “He wore a mohair and silk linen tailored suit for our Caribbean wedding, which created a natural linen look without the worry of creasing,” explains Pippa. “For the UK, he wore a classic three-piece navy suit, which was fitted perfectly and matched the bridesmaids’ navy dresses. He looked gorgeous!”
Pippa chose her three best friends to be bridesmaids for both her celebrations, as well as one adorable flowergirl! For the beach, the girls all wore fabulous full-length coral multiway dresses from twobirds Bridesmaid, accessorized with simple coral flip flops. For the UK, the adult bridesmaids wore stunning navy dresses by Maids to Measure. “They were all slightly different, as the girls could choose how much lace they wanted on the dress,” explains Pippa. The flowergirl wore a cute navy dress with sparkly pumps from Monsoon.
Hair and makeup
“In the Caribbean, we all did our own make-up as we wanted a very natural look,” says Pippa. “The spa at The St James’s Club resort did our hair, and I had hair extensions added by Inanch London to get that beachy mermaid look.” In the UK, Pippa wanted an updo to show off the beautiful detailing on her dress. “We had the brilliant Rachel Louise Hair, who came to the venue to style us all.”
Pippa and Chris had a civil ceremony on Mamora Bay beach, which is part of St James’s Club Resort in Antigua. “We had an amazing registrar called Vaughn,” says Pippa. “He was really warm and sincere, and had us all laughing one minute and crying the next.” The couple both agreed that getting married in the Caribbean was a simple process – and unlike some overseas ceremonies, their marriage is legally recognized in the UK.
After their cocktail hour, Pippa and Chris had a fabulous wedding breakfast on the beach. The couple wanted to wow their guests, so they served a selection of elaborate seafood starters and soup, followed by freshly-cooked Antiguan lobster and steak, and a selection of coconut flavored puddings for dessert. “We wanted to make the most of the island’s best ingredients,” says Pippa. “The food was fabulous!”
In the UK, Pippa and Chris served canapés and a selection of drinks on arrival, followed by mini fish and chips and burgers later on. They also treated their guests to a yummy sweet buffet with an array of ivory coloured sweets and confectionery supplied by Candy Counters. “The counter matched our colour theme and made a gorgeous feature in the room!” smiles Pippa.
For their Caribbean wedding, Pippa and Chris chose an ivory and coral theme, complete with rustic, beachy touches. “We wanted to keep it simple but add a little pop of colour with the coral,” Pippa explains. The decorations included white roses and orchids, shells, and floaty ivory linens. “We had hanging lanterns and lots of tea lights and candles, as well as fairy lights in all the trees,” says Pippa. “It looked magical as the sun started to set!”
Back in the UK, the couple chose an elegant ivory and navy colour scheme, which was better suited for the winter season!
In the Caribbean, the St James’s Club helped source the couple’s flowers, which were all coral and ivory roses and orchids. For the UK, Pippa and Chris had their flowers done by their talented neighbour Jane, who dressed the venue with ivory hyacinths and roses. “They were so pretty, and they smelled amazing!” says Pippa.
“We chose a delicious carrot cake, because it’s our favourite flavour!” says Pippa. The cake was decorated with a simple pearl design to match Pippa’s jewellery and topped with some fresh ivory flowers to complement the decorations.
Pippa and Chris gave their guests a palm hand fan to use during the ceremony, which made a great keepsake and kept everyone cool – plus they were tied with romantic ribbons reading ‘To Have and To Hold’. “We also filled mini rustic bottles with local rum and tied them with a little thank you message for our guests to take away,” says Pippa.
For the wedding ceremony Pippa and Chris had a solo steel pan player, who also played for the cocktail hour. This was followed by a personal performance by a family member, who played the wind pipe. After the wedding breakfast, the couple had a fantastic local reggae band which was organized by the resort’s planning team. “They were amazing and got the guests up dancing all night!” says Pippa.
For the UK, Pippa and Chris entertained their guests with a brilliant wedding DJ from The Live Events Group. “I also surprised Chris by asking our friends Maris and Laurel to perform a song for us on the grand piano at the hotel,” says Pippa. At the UK celebration, the couple entertained their guests with a fun photobooth from GroovyBooth and a drop top wooden guest book from The Wedding Tree.
Pippa and Chris went straight over to Galley Bay Resort, Antigua, which is part of the same group of hotels at St James’s Resort. “The resort was perfect for a peaceful and private honeymoon – the food at the bars and restaurants was amazing!” says Pippa. “We also did an island boat trip and some snorkeling, as well as horse riding!” In their downtime, the couple had massages and relaxed by the beautiful pool with delicious cocktails.
Real Wedding Gallery
Venue: St James’s Club Resort, Antigua
Dress: Suzanne Neville at Ellie Sanderson
Shoes: Elegant Steps, Freya Rose
Hair: Extensions by Inanch London
Jewellery: Olivier Laudus
Suit: Stephen Bishop Suiting
Bridesmaids: twobird Bridesmaid
Confetti: Shropshire Petals
Venue: The Mount Somerset Hotel & Spa
Dress: Justin Alexander at Creatiques Couture
Shoes: Benjamin Adams
Jewellery: Olivier Laudus
Hair: Rachel Louise, Taunton
Suit: Stephen Bishop Suiting
Bridesmaids: Maids to Measure
Entertainment: Live Events, GroovyBooth, Bspoak
Candy Cart: Candy Counters