Married at Millbridge – R&F
Rachel and Fiyin’s Spring wedding day was so full of love and laughter! Surrounded by family and friends, they created so many beautiful memories that will be cherished forever.
We caught up with them to relive their special day and give you a glimpse into just how much fun was had, from those loud “Yam Seng” to the incredible traditional wedding attires…
How did you meet and what’s the proposal story?
We met for the first time through mutual friends who invited a bunch of us to a pizza night in Shoreditch. We didn’t actually speak after that until the same friends invited us to a karaoke event, they hosted a year later. Honestly, if it wasn’t for them, we wouldn’t be together!
The proposal happened on our bucket list trip to Iceland. We had just polished off dinner at a restaurant in Reykjavik and before heading back to the hotel we decided to go for a walk around the stunning Harpan concert hall to take some pictures. It was at this time that Fiyin, being the opportunist that he is, decided to get down on one knee and propose!
Why did you choose Millbridge Court?
Initially we didn’t really have an idea of what kind of wedding we wanted, but we came across Millbridge Court online and were really impressed by the aesthetic and how it seemed both modern and classic at the same time. The location also suited us well as we were London-based and wanted it to be easily accessible for our friends and family, but at the same time it was remote enough to feel like a countryside escape. With Rachel being a passionate foodie, the catering was also something that caught our eye from the get-go with impressive menu options offered by Kalm Kitchen.
Ultimately, we are so glad that we went with Millbridge given that from the moment we reached out, they had been really responsive, personable and eager to help which meant a great deal to us, especially throughout the planning process.
What did you love about having a Spring wedding?
Having a Spring wedding was one thing we were set on from the start of the planning process. It’s that time of year when the skies start to get brighter, but it doesn’t get overwhelmingly hot during the day and the sun sets later in the evening. Of course, with Spring comes the blossoming of nature and wildlife, and there was just something so beautiful about the symbolism of new beginnings at springtime which made the idea of having a spring wedding all the more special.
Tell us more about your suppliers and why you chose them.
We chose Philipa Day as our florist as we loved her organic style using a combination of flowers and colours that perfectly suited the fresh spring theme we were going for.
From the moment we came across Emma Jane Lewis’ portfolio online, we knew that we wanted her to photograph our wedding. Her photos are romantic, candid, and editorial all at the same time and there were so many key moments throughout the day that we’ll always be able to look back on thanks to her.
Our decision to hire a photobooth was a pretty last minute call but might have been one of the best things we decided to do! Picture Blast provided a really easy booking experience and set up on the day without a hitch. Our guests loved taking photos with the fun accessories it came with – and the best part is, the photos were all saved digitally so it was very amusing looking through them all when the link was sent to us!
We made the conscious decision to get our friends and family involved in some parts of the day too. It made the day so much more meaningful knowing some of our nearest and dearest also had a part to play in our big day.
Were there any family traditions that featured in your day?
At the end of the meal, we went around to each table to toast our guests – a Chinese wedding tradition called ‘Yam Seng’ (equivalent meaning to ‘Cheers’ in Cantonese), Rachel’s dad encouraged everyone to raise their glasses and shout “Yam Seng” at the top of their lungs. It definitely brought plenty of laughter and even a little bit of competition between the tables as to who was the loudest!
Our first dance then featured the two of us in traditional Yoruba wedding attire which were custom made for us in Nigeria. We danced our way into the reception hall surrounded by friends and family before our Nigerian guests sprayed us with cash – talk about a grand entrance!
Tell us something that we wouldn’t know about your day from the pictures.
The food was absolutely incredible. It was one of the things our guests kept bringing up as a key highlight from the day; from the canapés to the bountiful sharing platters and the late-night snacks, it was all so delicious and beautifully plated. Hats off to the Kalm Kitchen team for doing such a fantastic job!
Favourite part of your wedding journey?
The day itself! The planning process was tough at times and there were days when we were both questioning “is this really worth all the stress?”, but when the day came, all of that faded away as we were surrounded by the ones we love and were reminded of what the day was really about.
Any words of wisdom for future couples?
Throw any expectations you have for the day out of the window and just focus on being present and making the most of it. Find five minutes for just the two of you together to take everything in and appreciate the moment. This might be the only time you’ll see all your loved ones under the same roof, and it flies by much quicker than you’d think!
Wedding Cake Inspiration from Scrumptious Bakes by Emma
Tell us a little bit about Scrumptious Bakes with Emma?
Scrumptious Bakes by Emma is based in Odiham, Hampshire. We specialise in beautiful, bespoke wedding cakes, macaron towers and macaron and personalised cookie wedding favours, all made with the finest organic, award-winning and sustainable ingredients.
Our contemporary classic aesthetic is imbued with subtle luxury and timeless style, and we are renowned for our exceptional ingredients and decadent touches.
Four generations of my family have been professional bakers and confectioners, and my mum is a former Michelin-starred chef. As a small child, I fell in love with baking in my grandma’s kitchen, and I take huge pleasure following in my family’s footsteps.
I started my business in June 2018, 16 months into recovery from a life-changing injury that damaged my sacroiliac joints, pelvis, lumbar spine, sacrum and coccyx. As I became stronger and could stand again, baking became a way for me to reconnect with my body, mind and soul. I have always found baking very mindful and easily lose myself in kneading soft dough or gently scooping and folding macaron batter.
Baking for family and friends initially gave me a sense of purpose; a clear, achievable goal and focus, which helped to relieve the trials of chronic pain and rehabilitation. It helped me to re-discover a sense of identity, to feel pride, to feel empowered. It rebuilt my self- confidence.
I found the concept of beginning my own business simultaneously exhilarating and challenging. Stimulating my mind was equally as important to my recovery as each physical step, and dreaming about my business, and how it would look and feel gave me hope and strength.
I am so proud of my business and all it has achieved so far. We have won several awards, and were recently invited by British Vogue to feature in their 2020 ‘Match Made In Vogue’ luxury wedding campaign. I am so excited to keep building on our success, and really looking forward to all that the future will bring.
What made you create these particular looks for your photoshoot and do you have a particular favourite or favourites?
I am inspired by so many different elements when designing centrepieces for our couples. These include: Seasonal, fresh produce; the beauty of the natural world and its tones, colour palettes and textures; the relaxed movement of soft foliage and the subtle beauty and natural cascade of flowers in bloom; and of course, most importantly, couples themselves and their stories.
Each wedding cake and macaron tower featured in the shoot celebrates our unique style; at once creative, unique, irresistibly elegant, mouth-wateringly delicious and thoughtfully designed.
Our contemporary classic aesthetic underpins each wedding cake and macaron tower. Traditional tiered wedding cakes for example have a modern feel with tiers of varying heights, carefully crafted from soft, light sponges and smooth, whipped buttercream, rather than fruit cake and sugar paste. Similarly, deliciously fragrant macarons, a French classic, are filled with indulgent Belgian white chocolate ganache and tower in a contemporary ombré cascade, perfectly complimented by soft, silk ribbon.
It is hard to choose a favourite design, but I love this organic three-tier Madagascan vanilla wedding cake, featured by British Vogue this October.
One of the ways to make your cake or macaron tower a true centrepiece is by extending its lines beyond where you would expect them to traditionally finish, encouraging the eye either higher or lower than it would usually look.
This design does this beautifully, with the delicate, soft ribbon by Eden Blooms adding a touch of subtle, contemporary elegance. By letting the ribbon drape delicately over the edge of the table, the long, tall lines of the cake are naturally elongated. It looks as striking, if not more so, from a distance, and works especially well as the width of the ribbon balances the height of the cake.
I also love the gently textured buttercream ruffles around the top of each sponge, the extra tall tiers, and the intriguing fresh flower cascade. It really is a design that captures the eye and draws you in, just like a piece of art, and I loved working with Hazel of Eden Blooms to bring it to life.
My other favourite design from the shoot is our Callebaut Belgian chocolate wedding cake. It is the perfect size for a smaller gathering of loved ones, and its combination of different height tiers is striking. I also love the contrast of the jewelled tones of its fresh flowers against the smooth chocolate buttercream finish, reflected beautifully by its gold mirror base; such a beautiful and simple way to elevate your cake. It also smelled absolutely amazing!
Tell us about the other suppliers that you collaborated with?
Hazel is an extremely talented and experienced florist, and her Hampshire cutting garden is exceptionally beautiful, brimming with seasonal flowers and foliage. Hazel’s work is truly stunning, and I cannot recommend her highly enough.
Anna and Simon are based in Warwickshire, and produce creative, fun, joyful and honest images and films. Their relaxed approach and light, natural style was perfect for Scrumptious Bakes, and I love how evocative each of the images are. I very highly recommend them too.
We were also grateful to Just 4 Linen, whose beautiful linen and napkins helped to create the perfect backdrop for each shot.
Why was Millbridge Court your choice of location?
Millbridge Court is a truly beautiful space, filled with natural light. Its high-vaulted, airy halls with floor-to-ceiling windows and rustic wooden beams provide a stunning neutral backdrop, and the possibilities for styling are endless. Its picturesque surroundings, with lush, green fields, a wildflower meadow and a hidden fern garden create lots of opportunities for photos, and their warm service and can-do attitude echoes our own approach.
Finally, we love how their spaces are designed with current trends in mind whilst respecting the spirit of the past, in much the same way that our fresh and modern designs connect with our traditional baking heritage.
Thank you for hosting us Millbridge Court. We hope to see you soon!
… and here are more of Emma’s show-stopping Cakes captured by We Are The Clarkes on Shoot Day!
Spaces- The Hall
In this bright and airy space, traditional Barn features meet modern architecture. The Hall features high vaulted ceilings and beautiful beams, whilst also having the addition of a stunning feature of a floor to ceiling glass wall which overlooks the stunning view of the garden and perfect English countryside and crisp. The neutral white walls also provide a blank for our Couples to create any vision they desire!
The shelves along the right hand side of the Hall have always been an incredibly popular way to add extra wow-factor to the room and we have loved seeing the multitude of ways Suppliers and our Couples have done this throughout the years… so much so, that during recent renovations this January, we added white paneling on each wall creating not only a beautiful feature but also a continuous shelf to allow for 360 degrees of styling (and you can see a snapshot of this in the fourth image under the title “Making the most of Autumn & Winter Colour Palettes’.)
For this post, we wanted to share a handful of images that illustrate the multitude of ways some of the wonderful people that have got married under the Millbridge Court roof have brought their vision to life, with each being unique and just as wonderful as the last. Xx
Mixing it up with High & Low Tablescapes…
Banquet Tables & eye-catching Balloon styling…
Striking Tall Centrepieces…
Making the most of the beautiful Autumn & Winter Colour Palettes & styling details…
& The Colourful… to the neutral.
Clockwise- Hannah McClune Photography, Hannah Berry Flowers, Bubblegum Balloons; Kit Myers Photography, Hannah Berry Flowers, Academy Furniture Hire; Kit Myers Photography, Lavender Hill Flowers; Abi Riley Photography, Francesca Sharp Flowers
Spaces- Ceremony Hall
The Ceremony Hall at Millbridge Court combines traditional Barn features with elegant and modern interior design.
With gorgeous oak beams, unique, statement chandeliers, crisp white walls and a feature floor-to-ceiling glass wall, the Hall is flooded with natural light all year round and is a beautiful neutral canvas which allows Couples to bring their vision to life with no limitations.
Over the years, Couples and their talented Suppliers have styled the Ceremony Hall in such inspiring ways that really make the most of the Seasons and the light, bright space and we wanted to share a few of those with you all. Xx
Spaces- The House
Upon setting foot in Millbridge Court you are welcomed into our stylish front lounge with oversized sofas and a log burner, this makes for a wonderful place for guests to relax with a glass of something delicious in hand throughout your day. This space transforms in the winter months as the venue takes on a cosy and romantic personality with the roaring fire and flickering candles a plenty.
Drawing you towards the heart of the building is a stylish mirrored lounge, ideal for those needing a rest from the dance floor! We have eight boutique hotel bedrooms, as well as The Hideaway which is set within the grounds of its very own secret garden. After a wonderful night’s sleep guests return to the lounge, where just past our marble island is a private breakfast room ideal for that all important coffee and much needed catch up on the night before.
Spaces- The Loft
The Loft is the perfect space to start your wedding day in luxurious comfort! With mirrors a plenty, a crystal pendant light, six individual Makeup Stations, an elegant seating area and a private changing area, this room has all you need.
The crown jewel of the room is the one way window, which allows excited members of the Bridal Party to a sneak peak of the ceremony hall in its various stages right up to the guests taking their seats in anticipation of your entrance.
Spaces- The Rooms
(Title Image by Razia N Jukes | Below Images by Philippa Sian Photography)
Our Boutique Hotel has nine bedrooms in total, seven in the main house and one in The Lodge, an amazing cottage that we have here at Millbridge Court; all of these room are exclusively yours to book for your nearest and dearest on the night of your Big Day. A continental family-style sharing breakfast is available for all guests in a private Dining space before check out the following morning, allowing time for that much needed catch up.
Last, but definitely not least is our final Bedroom, The Hideaway, a secluded wooden cabin, tucked into woodland and reserved exclusively for the couple on the night of your wedding. Walking through the private gates and beyond the secret fern garden leading to the front door (another amazing location for photos!) you will find your own secluded hideaway for the evening, complete with roll-top copper bath and a veranda overlooking the neighbouring countryside.
Spaces- The Arbour
The Arbour at Millbridge Court is a beautiful oak structure licensed for outdoor ceremonies between April and September. The garden is surrounded by tall photinia trees which gives it a secluded and private atmosphere and creates a unique space in the garden.
With capacity for up to 150 guests and rustic wooden seating, it is a beautiful country garden option for your ceremony. The extended aisle is also the perfect backdrop for that all important confetti shot; whether getting married inside or out, it provides a picture- perfect setting to celebrate your first moments as a married couple.
In addition, the Arbour itself provides a wonderful backdrop for confetti shots, your couple shots or group photos whatever the season and is an ideal location to still have some amazing shots outside even if it’s raining!
If you are super lucky, the neighbouring cows will come to visit – leaving you with a very unique photo opportunity!
Many Photographers also love using the Arbour all year round to get dramatic nighttime shots, like these beautiful images below.
10 Questions with… Hair and Makeup Artist, Carolanne Armstrong
1. How did your passion for Makeup and Hair styling come about?
I always just really enjoyed the process of starting with a blank canvas and painting creating a beautiful finish. I used to be able to do my own liquid liner in the dark because I knew the curve of my own eyes so well…. It turns out working on my own face and hair is not nearly as fun as thousands of other people’s hair types and colouring. It’s always new and always a joy applying subtle tones and colours to new faces. and I love the blending.
2. When did you setup your Business as a freelance Hair and Makeup Artist and what drew you to Bridal Hair and Makeup?
I started working in hair and makeup nearly 15 years ago. The majority of my work has always been bridal because I enjoy the environment of working with real people on a really important occasion. I kind of love the pressure for everything to be perfect. People often have preconceptions and stereotypes of what a makeup artist is like or what they do. I like dispelling the myth that it’s all borderline drag!
3. How would you describe your style?
Client-focussed. Not about what I want to do, or my new trendy palette. My work leans towards editorial, with invisible skin makeup, seamless blending of tones and textures that flatter both person and the personality. I like it when you don’t notice the makeup, but the person just looks really good.
4. What can Brides expect when they choose you to do their Makeup and/or Hair for their Wedding Day?
Generally someone recommends me, or a client starts following me on social media, then they’ll get in touch after seeing what my work looks like. The first stage is to secure the wedding date with a booking fee. The date is exclusively secured and then we can take our time to arrange a mutually convenient trial appointment. I dedicate specific dates through the year just to trials, so people book a time and come along to one of the venues available. At the trial, we talk about the details of the wedding day and then, roughly two weeks before the wedding I’ll send over a schedule for the wedding morning. That way everyone knows where they need to be and when, and I have all the time I need to to the best work I can.
5. What do you love most about what you do?
I love the creative element. Doing hair and makeup is my equivalent of a mindful colouring book 🙂
I love making someone feel great in their skin, I love going to new places and meeting hundreds of new faces every year.
6. What top tips do you offer Brides when they’re choosing what Hair and Makeup to have for their Big Day?
Communication before styling even starts is the most important thing, to work out what a client really doesn’t want! Usually someone’s had at least one terrible experience where they weren’t listened to and got caked. I advise that they aim to feel amazing but also totally at ease with their reflection.
7. What advice do you give to Brides on the Wedding Day itself?
By the time the wedding day comes around I feel like I know the client and what they want quite well. I’ve also delivered my schedule of timings so I’m usually concentrating on the brushwork and hopefully contributing to a calm, chilled out morning. The only advice I would give is to make sure you have your drink within reach while I’m styling 🙂
8. What trends are you seeing for 2020?
I think we’re looking at lots of romantic but unfussy styling. Nothing too sleek but certainly more editorial. Simple and elegant, with focus on the accessories or statement necklines or sleeves.
9. What do you love the most about Millbridge Court?
I love watching the bride or groom walk down the aisle through the one-way window. I get the only view of everyone turning to see them walk in.
10. What are your three favourite industry professionals/ brands to follow on Instagram at the moment?
For makeup: @LisaEldridge, @fionastiles and @consciousbeautyunion
For hair: Always @sammcknight1 and @samvillahair
To check out Carolanne’s Website, click here!
Wedding Trends 2020| Hear From the Experts (Pt. 2)
“I never thought I would see the day when dried flowers would be back on trend, but its here! … I can see them being a huge hit next season, with future clients already sharing mood boards featuring these delicate flowers. . Although dried flowers are more expensive, they will last a lot longer and provide endless texture throughout designs. I really love their delicate dusty and muted tones and have already started using a few in designs this season.”
– Hannah Berry Flowers @hannahberryflowers
“I think photography is probably the least affected by trends (not so much seasonal ones anyway), but as ever I’m noticing a growing concern for more natural and candid photography, and less emphasis on posed images. That said, I believe there is such a wide spectrum of photographers out there who offer everything you can think of style wise! Which is lovely, as there are still a great number of couples who care about their portraits, and who also want their editing style to reflect the look or season of the month they’re getting married in. I like bright colours and timeless editing and it’s something my couples mention when choosing me, so I suppose, I can only speak for myself, but I expect 2020 will be a big year for celebrations and a focus on everyone having a wonderful day, and the photography reflecting that.”
– Sophie Duckworth Photography @duck_photo
The Wrap Skirt
“Its hard to reinvent bridal silhouettes but this year see the emergence of a brand-new take on the ballgown skirt. A fun, coquettish revamp that will allow brides a full range of movement and a cheeky, surprise flash of statement shoes.”
3D is the new lace
“We all love lace and embellished fabrics, but when one fabric has been such a strong story in bridal fashion, brides-to be will, naturally, want to choose a look that is unique to them. Light tulles with 3D, appliqued flowers are the perfect solution. A pretty lace effect, perfect for garden, barn and rolling countryside.”
– Emma at Miss Bush Bridal @missbushbridal
“No slowing down on Cross Back Chairs in 2020. Throughout 2019 our number of covers for Cross Back Chairs & Vintage Trestle Tables sky rocketed, for us this is partly due to the time we have invested in developing our stock, but for the industry it is mostly due to the prominence of Cross Back Chairs across Wedding Blogs and Posts from so many influential sources.
We will definitely sell an increased amount of Louis Chairs in 2020. We have more provisional bookings for next Summer than we have ever had before the end of any previous year. Most of our bookings are currently for marquee based weddings, we often see earlier reservations for marquee contracts compared to venue based contracts, but several confirmations are already in for local and London venues. We are really lucky to have such wonderful photography of the Louis Chair at Millbridge Court.” https://www.pinterest.co.uk/furniturehire/millbridge-court/louis-chair-millbridge-court/
– Academy Furniture Hire @academyfurniturehire
(Lead Image: Kit Myers Photography, Hannah Berry Flowers, Academy Furniture Hire, Couvert Hire)