A Russian cake, Tibetan love-knots and Mongolian Throat-Singing. Miss this real wedding at your peril!


WHERE: Somerley Lakes, Hampshire

WHEN: August 2009

PHOTOGRAPHER: Wessex Wedding Photography

The proposal

“It was such a shock!” remembers Jade. “It was my 21st birthday and close friends and family all came for a meal that night. All of a sudden, Richard knelt down with my seven-year-old sister sitting on his knee and proposed! No one could believe it!”

The bride’s real wedding outfit

“I found my dress when I wasn’t looking for it!” says Jade. “I wore a very simple and floaty, strapless, silk gown from Monsoon, with a chiffon overlay and sparkling beads sewn into the bust. I felt incredible – it was just so light!” she adds.

The accessories

“I wore a pagan headdress in my hair; my necklace was a Tibetan loveknot, inspired by our trip to Tibet, and I didn’t wear shoes – just toe-rings and an ankle bracelet,” explains Jade.

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“Richard turned up in a 1971 army staff car, which is roadworthy without a windscreen or ‘openable’ doors!”


The groom’s real wedding outfit

Richard bought his kilt from Slaters. And his (very brave!) bride-to-be added her own little touch to his look: “I handmade his sporran from a skin of one of his old sheep and a kangaroo skin he brought back from Australia,” says Jade. “He looked incredible – I love a man in a waistcoat!”

The bridesmaids

Jade’s gorgeous little sister wore a flowergirl dress from Bhs, and her bridesmaid wore a sage-green chiffon dress from Coast.


The ceremony

“We were married in a huge Tipi in a field by a lake,” says Jade. “I walked down the aisle to Mongolian Throat-Singing,” she adds.

The flowers

Bloomin Flowers arranged my bouquet of orchids and ivy, tied with transparent string, which was very unique,” says Jade.

The theme

“Our theme was ‘trees’ based on the two oak trees in the field where we got married. We gave tree seeds as favours and planted a tree after our marriage ceremony, between the two oak trees. If everyone planted their seeds then more than 500 trees will have been planted from our day – that’s a lovely thought,” says Jade or her eco-friendly real wedding.


The cake

“My nan designed our cake in total secrecy – we just asked that it be inspired by our backpacking adventures,” explains Jade. “Nan copied a photo of a train station in Russia and replicated it in icing! She even put a working train on a train track around the cake!”

“My nan made the cake from a cookbook published in 1861 and used the same tins she used for my parents’ cake…”

The honeymoon

“We went to Makasutu in Gambia; an Eco-resort where we slept in lodges floating on the river among the mangroves,” says Jade. “We travelled down the river in a dugout canoe with
the monkeys watching us!”