Kate talks about getting married to Benn on her big day…

WHO: Kate and Benn

WHERE: Islington Town Hall

WHEN: May 2012

PHOTOS: Compose Photography



We had a very relaxed engagement and wedding – we didn’t start planning anything for about a year after getting engaged in June 2010 in Rome.

We live in London so we wanted to keep it local to us. Islington Town Hall was the best location and the building itself is gorgeous with long marbled corridors and staircases. Our favourite gastro pub the Victoria Stakes was the best location for our reception, and even better, it was just around the corner! We kept things small and low-key with just 65 guests.

Getting ready

I got ready at the Hoxton Hotel with my bridesmaids and parents which was so exciting despite the early 7am start!

Continue reading below…

My hair inspiration was 1950’s – I’d done a lot of research into different styles.

With the help of family friend and hairdresser Jackie Lewis we decided on a half-up do, with front quiff and two barrel rolls at the back, with a pretty silver and pearl hair comb.

Jackie did three different hair styles for the three bridesmaids too – one with a large plaited braid the whole way round, one with hair pinned and curled, and one with hair side-pinned and waved – which after 2 hair trials she nailed on the day!

Considering there was a lot going on with the  hairdressers, photographer and make-up artist, it was all very calm and relaxing.

I loved having my makeup done by Ana Milena Ospina Ruiz– I think that was the most peaceful part of the day for me.

She made me look beautiful and flawless and it really complemented my wedding dress – even the lipstick she used matched the pinks in my bouquet perfectly! My mum and sister also had their makeup done too and looked so stunning.

Something old… Something new…

I wore the ‘Garbo’ wedding dress by Charlotte Balbier which I tracked down at Angelica Bridal in Angel.

Dora at the store was fantastic in helping me choose ‘the one’ and understood that being only 5ft tall I needed a dress that wouldn’t swamp me and would work with my curves!

The dress took around 6 months to make and was tailored by Richard Thompson who nipped it in, in all the right places to make it fit like a glove.

For my ‘something blue’ I found a set of blue stickers on Not On The Highstreet which stick to the underside of your wedding shoes – which I thought was a brilliant idea! I went with ‘MRS’ ‘G’ – one sticker for each shoe.

The bridesmaids wore long black ‘Elita’ dress by Coast. They looked great against their blonde hair and pale coloured bouquets. It didn’t want them to be wearing a typical bridesmaid dress – and it’s a dress they can wear again.

My best friend and chief bridesmaid Mel is a graphic designer and offered to design and print our wedding invitations which was brilliant as I knew they would be more personal and in keeping with our ideas and style.

The colour of the invites was the colour of the main room at the Victoria Stakes – it all tied in perfectly!

My brother Joseph who’s a joiner made us giant wooden K & B letters to prop up in the venue – which everyone loved!

My husband to be Benn wore a dove grey suit from River Island and pale pink tie – the same colour as the peonies in my bouquet.

The reception

After the ceremony guests boarded the double decker London wedding bus. It was a brilliant way to get all the guests together and arriving at the same time – and no one would get lost!

Benn and I travelled to the reception in a MK11 1968 Jaguar, which was brilliant. We loved the blue leather interior!

Our photographer Susannah from Compose Photography captured some great shots of us in the car.

After the 10 minute journey to the reception, guests were greeted with anti-pasti and proscecco. We wanted to keep the food and drink theme Italian because Benn proposed in Rome and its our favourite type of food!

The manager of the Victoria Stakes Paolo is from Venice so he made sure we had an authentic menu. He and the team there really made it perfect for us.

Our local florist Krissie created beautiful and simple square glass vases full of white roses, peonies and big hydrangeas.

The string quartet ‘Liquid Strings’ played lots of old and modern songs to keep us entertained while everyone chatted and ate then we went outside for dinner which was an assortment of pastas, meats and Italian gelato.

After the dinner and the speeches it was time to cut the cake – a beautiful 3 tiered cake that by brilliant Auntie Frances had made for us.

One layer of lemon sponge, one of vanilla and one of chocolate. All topped with white icing and decorated with roses and peonies to match the tables and all the bouquets.

We then all went back upstairs to the candlelit main room and had our first dance to Frank Sinatra’s ‘The way you look tonight’ – then it was time to party!

We all danced til we dropped and then it was time to leave and go to our hotel and put up our newly married feet! The day went so fast and we wish we could do it all again – it really was the best day of our lives.

Kate x