Serena & Jordan
The exquisite wedding of the couple who own the dream wedding destination, Sheene Mill in Cambridgeshire
It didn’t take long for Serena and Jordan to fall head over heels for each other. “We met in a bar through mutual friends and bonded over our love for food!”
“The next day we spent hours messaging each other. Just a week later Jordan made the three-hour drive from where he lived in Stoke on Trent to see me. We had lunch, visited my mum for drinks and my dad for dinner, then stayed up until 5am talking. Jordan went on holiday for two weeks the next day. When he arrived home, he got a taxi straight from the airport to my house, dropped his suitcase and never left!”
But while their hearts were set on each other quickly, the couple waited nine years before getting engaged. “We always knew it was on the agenda, but we had a business to run at Sheene Mill and that had to take priority. It was a huge surprise when Jordan did propose, and waiting meant we were able to do everything exactly as we wanted.”
There was no need for this couple to visit endless venues in the search to find their perfect spot to wed, because it was already on the doorstep! “We live at and run Sheene Mill, hosting many weddings every year. We couldn’t imagine anywhere more personal or beautiful. I had complete trust in my staff and knew they’d execute everything the way I wanted it to be. They went above and beyond and we had the most amazing day!”
Choosing her wedding dress was another, far longer, story. “I tried on what felt like hundreds of dresses before finding my own. Having seen so many before, I never quite had that wow moment. I also wanted something more fitted while my mum wanted a simple ballgown style. My Caroline Castigliano dress was the perfect compromise between the two. Wearing it on the day with my hair and makeup done, it just felt right and I was so thankful my mum had convinced me to go with it!”
Jordan looked every bit the dapper groom wearing grey tails, an ivory waistcoat with champagne detailing, and a deep red tie to match the bride’s flowers. The groomsmen joined him in the same outfits, wearing champagne ties instead.
“I chose four bridesmaids and they wore beautiful floor-length champagne gold dresses with ivory lace, a low back and subtle train.
It’s quite hard to switch off and step back getting married at your own venue, and I felt ridiculously nervous on my wedding morning,” Serena tells us. “It hit me that this really was my day just before I walked down the aisle.” The couple married in a romantic ceremony right on the water’s edge, surrounded by unforgettable floral decorations.
“Walking into our wedding breakfast was everything I had imagined it would be and more! There was a beautiful blossom tree at the entrance, a string quartet playing, flowers everywhere. And let’s not forget the hundreds of champagne gold candles. I think even Jordan was impressed!” Serena laughs.
The couple opted for a classic twist on a glamorous theme, working with a palette of rich red, champagne gold and ivory, all with a summery twist. “We chose crystal glassware and decorations throughout. The look was exquisitely romantic, teamed with candelabra, candlesticks and mood lighting – something couples who marry here can now benefit from too!”
A magician joined the entertainment line-up during the canapés. There was also an ice sculpture Champagne bar and liquid nitrogen gin bar – ideal ice breakers for guests. And for the wedding breakfast? It had to be the couple’s favourite eight-course tasting menu – an apt indulgence, considering Serena and Jordan first bonded over their love of food!
“The food was out of this world,” smiles Serena, “I owe my chefs forever!” Guests also indulged with a dessert table and sweets buffet as well as the couple’s five-tier wedding cake, which deserves mention of its own.
“The cake was amazing! Stood on a champagne gold sequin tablecloth, the cake featured gold leaf, soft lace and pearl decorations as well as cascading flowers. I couldn’t believe they were sugar!” Inside, the layers included rich chocolate cake, a brownie tier, a Victoria sponge with Chantilly cream and strawberry jam, and a light, moist fruitcake.”
The brilliant band Rollacoaster took to the floor in the evening. They played a wonderful mix of old and new songs exactly as the couple requested. There was also live acoustic music in the gardens and a disco between sets and after midnight… with the couple partying until 5am!
“Our first dance was slightly alternative. We started with Take That, slow dancing to fool everyone, then mid lift spin Jordan dropped me to the floor and we broke into Dizzee Rascal’s ‘Dance Wiv Me’. Our funky routine put a smile on everyone’s faces and really represented us as a couple!”
Like many couples dream of, Serena and Jordan married in August so their wedding duties at Sheene Mill meant postponing their honeymoon until they had time to relax and enjoy it properly. “We booked to go to Singapore and the Maldives the following November – it was really nice to have something to look forward to!”
If you’ve fallen in love with the idea of a pretty English wedding on the water’s edge, with outdoor or indoor ceremonies available, then visit Sheene Mill’s website and get in touch to find out more.
VENUE Sheene Mill, Cambridgeshire
DRESS Caroline Castigliano, London
BRIDESMAID DRESSES Burr Bridal, Cambridge
GROOM Chimney Formal Wear
ACCESSORIES Caroline Castigliano, Astley Clarke, Jimmy Choo
HAIR Lisa Waller, Bliss Perfect Brides
MAKEUP Jane Iredale
STATIONERY Kay, Intricate Creations
FLOWERS Alison, Wildwood Floral Events
CAKE Nadia, Pretty Tasty
CATERING Sheene Mill
VENUE DRESSER Jen, Raspberry Bespoke Events
VIDEOGRAPHER Reel in Life
ENTERTAINMENT DJ Jason Coles, 3D Events
String Quartet, singer, guitarist and saxophonist organised by Kevin Hall, Fire Elephant
ICE SCULPTURE Funky Ice
OYSTERS Oyster Meister
PHOTOBOOTH Jen, Mirror Photobooth
MAGICIAN Lee Smith, Walkabout Magic
BLOSSOM TREE Alice, All In One Season
GUESTBOOK Demograffix Graffiti Art