25th Sep 2017

Samantha & Chris

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The Big Question

It was my birthday and Chris had arranged a special trip for lunch at the Dorchester, London. The day before I arrived home to find a clue in an envelope….which would be the first of ten (one for each year we had known each other). With my birthday looming I assumed it would be for a surprise present. Over the next two days I was given a different clue, with the 9th given to me at Paddington station. Chris then suggested we took a walk over to the Dorchester via Hyde Park, much to my dismay as I didn’t want to arrive all hot and bothered!

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As we approached the lake in Hyde Park, Chris gave me the final clue. As I opened it Chris stooped down onto one knee as I read “will you marry me?” 

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Shop 'Til You Drop

Sadly my mum passed away shortly after we became engaged, so the thought of dress shopping overwhelmed me initially. A year later, my sister and I decided there would be no better way to think of my mum than to go dress shopping on the anniversary, and this was the day I found the one. I do believe she was there supporting me on that day.

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The Augusta Jones dress was the first dress I had spotted when I walked into the shop, and as soon as I put it on I knew it would be the one. It was emotional, but I could not hide my delight when the dress went on. It's cheesy but the dress is truly the best thing you'll ever wear, every time you look at it you notice the detail and craftsmanship that goes into creating a wedding dress. I choose the matching Augusta Jones veil which cleverly the lace started where the sleeve lace finished, creating a halo effect of lace.

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The Perfect Day

I did not sleep a wink the night before and at 5am I sat in the conservatory in the grounds of the beautiful castle waiting for the others to wake, just trying to take in the reality of what the day would hold. We were lucky, we had one of the hottest days of the year and all day, a rarity in the UK weather!

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On the morning, I thought I was holding my emotions well until I was stood outside in the entrance room waiting to walk down the aisle and our singer (Cat Delphi) started the piano and the chords of Beyoncé’s ‘Halo’ started to play. My dad and I waited until everyone was seated, stood at the beautiful doorway and just stood a minute taking it all in. The beauty of the castle is that long aisle, so we made sure we enjoyed every single second walking down it. I caught a glimpse of Chris’s eye at the top, so the first couple of photos taken show me holding back the emotions.

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The ceremony went without a hitch with two beautiful readings from close friends. My new husband and I walked back down the aisle to a rendition of Elvis Presley’s ‘Can’t help falling in love with you” before going into the library for a much needed 5 minutes….did we really just do that?!

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The afternoon was a summer haze of Mai Tais, formal photos, laughter, garden games sunshine and happiness. Followed by a delightful wedding breakfast and some incredible speeches delivered by the amazing men in my life. We took to the beautifully lit dance floor and waltz and spins started to "tale as old as time" from Beauty and the Beast. The fairy lights on the dance floor lit up the underneath of my dress and highlighted the beautiful lace appliqués.

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Wise Words

Take 10 minutes just the two of you to take the situation in. We did this straight after the ceremony so we could talk to each other first. We also coincided this with some of our own private drinks and canapés, making sure we were refreshed ready to meet our guests.

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Photographer: Dream Wedding Photographer
Dress: Karen
Location: Clearwell Castle
Stockist: Laura May Bridal
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