ASYLUM CHAPEL WEDDING
- Miina -
The dress and the look
I really wanted to find a dress that I could be comfortable in for the whole day, that still made me feel like “me” and something I could eat a lot of wedding cake in and still be able to dance the night away! I initially wanted something oversized and flowing but when I tried this style on it just drowned me as I’m quiet petite. I ended up going for something much more fitted than I ever thought so it just goes to show that you may think you know what you want but it’s so beneficial to try different styles on and get a feel for different dresses!
I was also really conscious, being vegan myself, that I didn’t want a dress made from silk or any other animal derived products. So when I began researching ethical wedding dresses, Indiebride London came up numerous times and I loved how they were just as conscious when it came to material as I was. Their use of ethically sourced and organic cotton was a major appeal to me.
After visiting a few other bridal stores, IBL was a completely different experience. It was very relaxed. I was left to freely browse through the wedding dresses with my mum and sister without any pressure. I was also able to try on as many of the dresses as I wished which was amazing as my previous appointments with other brands you were limited to only trying on up to 5 dresses. Miina was really supportive, offering sound advice and alternative alterations to make the dress I chose my own. Even when my mum and sister preferred a different dress initially, Miina encouraged me to go for the one I felt the best in as at the end of the day it’s my day. A few days before I collected the dress, I had a panic and wanted to have the train of the dress in sheer lace as opposed to having the lining run all the way to the hem. I think I messaged Miina at midnight and she reassured me that when I go and collect the dress we can make any additional changes. Having that kind of support and service was second to none. The dress was so comfortable I wore it all day and night and even wore the veil all night too!
All I wanted for accessories was the amazing veil with the macrame and lace detail running through which id seen on the IBL website before my appointment and blue velvet shoes which I'd bought off ASOS before I even found my dress! I added the super cheesy but cute “Wifey for Lifey” stickers on the soles of the shoes myself and they were set to go!
Hair and makeup
When it came to hair and makeup, again I just really wanted to look like myself but a better version of! I don’t wear a lot of make up day to day and I’d never had it done professionally, so again it was important for me to pick someone I was super comfortable with and who would be using cruelty free and vegan friendly beauty products. My make up artist Katie Adamson was amazing - so chilled and made me feel really fabulous on the day itself. She even helped me do my veil at the last minute!
The groom's outfit
Ollie: I used Pinterest for a bit of inspiration and knew I wanted a patterned suit. However, I wasn’t too fussed to have anything specially made. That’s when ASOS came to the rescue with a green check suit by Farah Vintage. I loved the idea of clashing prints and textures so opted for a Burton grey waistcoat and then a floral printed tie from Moss Bros to coincide with the ceremony flowers. Sadly I lost my father several years ago and so Mel had a custom lapel pin of my dad's signature made for me by Sarah Meredith. It was such an emotional moment opening the gift on the morning of the wedding and just added that special finishing touch to my suit.
We both fell in love with the Asylum Chapel after seeing photos of it online. We loved the distressed walls and the beautiful stained glass windows. It had the romanticism of a church but with the added quirkiness of its history. We also liked how it didn’t need much doing to it in terms of decoration - just lots of beautiful candles helped set the scene. Luckily we had a really hot sunny day for our wedding and so the outdoor space was really valued. Seeing everyone drinking rhubarb cocktails and eating vegan doughnuts in the sun was a really fond memory for us.
We then took a London red bus with our guests over to the East Dulwich Tavern. The day before the wedding Ollie, my mum and sister and I spent the day decorating it with fairy lights cascading from the ceilings and glass jars which we’d collected over the last year filled with fresh flowers from the flower market. Doing everything ourselves saved us so much money and we had so much fun doing it all together!
We didn’t have a theme as such. I just knew I wanted pink peonies in my bouquet and lots of wild green foliage. The instructions to my wonderful friend and florist Sally from Petal And Bow were “I want my bouquet to look as though I’ve gone to a field and just picked lots of wild flowers” and I think she hit the nail on the head with my bouquet. It was stunning! We were both really inspired by the chapel itself, so all of our invitations which we sent to our guests online to save on paper had a distressed feel inspired by the walls of the chapel with highlights of gold.
Ollie and I made a lot of the props for our wedding ourselves. We made a giant doughnut board for our after ceremony canapés and the bar too which was filled with bottled cocktails and beers. We also made a card holder in the shape of a globe as we were planning to go travelling for our honeymoon after the wedding.
Food and cake
Both being vegan, food was really important to us. We chose our favourite food that we wanted to share with our family and friends. We went with sweet canapés after the ceremony from Borough 22 who make the most amazing vegan doughnuts. The pub created a fully vegan buffet menu for us including vegan burgers, falafel, lots of marinated veggies and kebabs with avocado dips and hummus and babaganoush - a real vegan feast! I’m from Yorkshire originally and so enlisted the help of one of the vegan bakeries there called Blondes to cater our vegan dessert table. We just had so many cakes and cupcakes for our guests to choose from. I bought a cake stand on eBay for our actual wedding cake as we discovered it would be cheaper this way and you’d get more for your money by ordering 3 separate cakes ourselves and making our own tiered cake using the stand. We were then able to have different flavours too - we had raspberry, a banana and pineapple one and a carrot cake. I made the floral cake topper myself. We also had little party bags for our guests to take home after the wedding of any leftover cake and food at the end of the night - we called them “midnight snack” bags!
We knew we just wanted to dance the night away at our wedding so we just hired a DJ. We had all our favourite songs playing but had also taken requests beforehand from our guests so they could have their favourite songs played too! We had a Kisstory remix half way through the night which got everyone down on the dance floor twerking! My wonderful friend Angelina Dove sang during our ceremony and as I walked down the aisle; this was such a special moment for the both of us. She took some of our most loved songs and rearranged them acoustically. I walked down the aisle to Biffy Clyro Many of Horror.
Photography and videography
This was our biggest splurge of the wedding and so worthwhile. As soon as we saw both the work of The Curries and This Modern Revelry we knew they had to capture our wedding day - they were a wedding dream team! The Curries are super chilled and made us feel so at ease snapping photos of our day; the photos turned out so beautifully.
We went back and forth on video as it was a pretty big chunk of our budget and with money leftover towards the end of the planning process, we were lucky TMR were still available. They are the most fun to hang around with - they don’t blend into your day, instead they’re up on the dance floor partying away with you like friends you’ve known for years. We are beyond happy with the video footage they captured for us and they edited it in the most unique way. We truly love their work.
- Melissa -