Jessica + Jordan
THIS WEDDING EMBRACES ALL THINGS FUN, WILD AND HANDMADE…
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ALI PAUL
While they may have seemed an unlikely match at first, Jessica and Jordan couldn’t have been more suited. “We met on a Barcelona beach when Jordan was 23, tanned and handsome and I was 19, ginger and wearing factor 50. It wasn’t until two years later when we spent a day in Brighton that we began dating, but I knew pretty quickly that Jordan was the one for me. Eight years later, equipped with a Champagne picnic, stunning ring and a romantic speech, Jordan proposed to me in a meadow of wild flowers! He purchased the ring from an antique jeweller in Brighton, my hometown, which had three diamonds to represent our past, present and future. It meant so much to me.”
Bucking the trend of many brides, Jessica made her own wedding dress. “I tried on so many and although I found some nice ones, I still wanted to change them in some ways.
“I’ve always made clothes, so I decided to go for it and make my dress.”
I made the entire gown from fabric with floral embroidery and beading with the help of my mother, and stitched each embroidered piece onto the bodice, belt and straps. I felt like me wearing it, with a delicate vintage feel but sparkle and a modern shape. It was really comfortable and soft underneath, so I could even run around and play badminton in it!”
Unsure whether she wanted a veil or not, Jessica made her own the night before the wedding, armed with a glass of wine! “I already had a relaxed, flowing tulle that complemented my dress, so I made it from that. I also added soft grey suede platform sandals from Mozimo.”
Staying true to her talents, Jessica even made her own fern-inspired garland headpiece from vintage items she had collected over the years.
“Jordan isn’t a fan of being dressed up – he normally spends all year in shorts and flip flops, even in December, so it was important that he felt comfortable and relaxed.” A wool textured jacket from Marks and Spencer, waistcoat and trousers from Next, and a knitted Marks and Spencer tie fitted the bill. “He looked amazing, so handsome and stylish but still totally him.”
In another twist on tradition, Jessica didn’t just choose two bridesmaids, she chose two bridesmen, too, and we think she chose the best! “Tamzin and I did our fashion degrees together and she helped sew me into my dress on the day. My sister Rosie planned the best hen do and hosted a Mr & Mrs game during our reception, getting all the guests cheering! Timmy and George are like brothers to me, so I wasn’t going to let tradition stop me from including them too!”
The girls wore navy jersey dresses from House of Fraser and the boys wore buttonholes, ties and pocket squares to complement Jordan’s outfit. Bobby from Artisan Hair House, a friend of the bride, did her wedding hair and helped her to relax. Despite initially not wanting to trust her makeup to someone else, Carole from Mimosa Bridal won her over. “She made me feel really special, so take your time and find the right person for you,” Jessica advises.
“We held our ceremony outdoors at Bignor Park, beneath their Greek Loggia.”
“The blank canvas let us put our stamp on things and we just loved the gardens, orchards and wilder areas – they even turned a fallen tree into an area to serve drinks from!”
The Gourmet Chef cooked up a storm with a hog roast that filled everyone up. Rather than gifting traditional favours that are often left behind, we had a duck bobbing competition instead with prizes! The ducks were numbered with prizes to match, it created a great atmosphere!”
The couple played on their venue’s natural surroundings for their wedding theme. “We liked the idea of a starlit woodland theme with a focus on fun, using natural, heathery purple flowers, trailing ivy and greenery, all set off with homemade rustic gold star decorations, which made the perfect top table backdrop. Jordan loves bird watching so we made this a theme, naming our tables after them too.
“A highlight for us were the amazing bell tents, hired from Bell Tent Company, which we camped out in on our wedding night!”
Waking up to bacon sandwiches over a camp fire in the morning was the perfect way to extend the wedding with everyone.”
Jessica and Jordan kept their relaxed and fun approach going after their festivities, flying out to New Zealand for four action-packed weeks. “We’d booked the flights but nothing else until a week before we flew! When we arrived in New Zealand, we hired a car and explored both islands for our own personal adventure. We got to see and do so many incredible things, even getting the chance to swim with Hector’s dolphins, the world’s smallest, in the open ocean.”
V E N U E Bignor Park
B R I D E S M A I D D R E S S E S House of Fraser
G R O O M Marks and Spencer and Next
S H O E S Mozimo
H A I R Artisan Hair House
M A K E U P Mimosa Bridal
C A T E R I N G The Gourmet Chef
T E N T S Bell Tent Company