WEDDINGS

URBAN ORGANIC WEDDING

When a talented stylist gets married you know it’s going to be pretty epic. Today’s bride, Holly, is the extremely stylish lady behind Avenue Lifestyle – if you haven’t heard of her blog then you must take a look! I’ve admired her contemporary, organic aesthetic since featuring this shoot, so when she got married to long-time love Dirk I just had to share her wedding! I’ve  been patiently waiting for the right moment to share this one, and I think this week of our new launch is pretty perfect timing!  Despite their original venue cancelling less than 2 months before the big day, Holly’s understated, natural style shows in every single lovingly considered detail, and captured perfectly by Anouschka Rokebrand.

Holly’s Story –

We met in Germany in 2008 as I was finishing a nine month study period and Dirk arrived on a three month internship.  I met him by chance one afternoon, realizing (happily!) that he was the new flatmate of a good friend of mine. The moment I laid eyes on him I knew he was different from the rest. After a whirlwind six weeks, I packed my bags and headed home to Australia before realizing I wasn’t ready to come home.  I spent my last dollar on a flight back to Europe. Those first moments spent together at the airport after seeing each other after a month apart were some I will never forget.  After nine months of commuting to the Netherlands from my new job in London, I knew the only option was for me to take the leap. On 1 January, 2009 I arrived in the Netherlands, bright red suitcase in hand, to be with him. It was the best decision I ever made. I was, and still am, crazy about him. He asked me to marry him on Boxing Day 2012, nearly two years after we welcomed our little girl into the world.

My gown was custom made by Rotterdam based designer and couturier Armeni. Though we had spent months discussing the design and selecting fabrics, it was only ready mere days before the wedding. I wanted something soft, billowy, feminine and romantic. I had spent many a sleepless night deliberating everything about THE DRESS, but the moment I was wearing that gown, with my hair and make-up done and in the beautiful context that I had so carefully created, I felt wonderful.  I entrusted a good friend of mine with my hair and make-up, and she did a lovely job and with a stunning hand made headpiece by Portobello Jewelry that I had hunted down after spotting on Pinterest, the whole look came together and I felt not only relieved, but beautiful. As I saw my own reflection in the mirror, I burst into tears. My five bridesmaids wore dresses that they picked themselves, I love the look of mismatched frocks of varying fabric types and shades in the same colour palette. They nailed it.. The groom wore an olive green / grey suit, paired with cognac leather shoes and belt, a linen tie and a crisp white shirt with very subtle neon stitching detailing.

Our dream wedding venue (an old library) fell through 8 weeks before our wedding day. Gutted and overwhelmed, we began the search for a new venue right away and we eventually chose an industrial building featuring exposed pipes, raw concrete and natural light. What I loved most about our venue was that the walls were painted partially in olive green, which I particularly liked and felt softened the rawness of the interior. I personally styled and conceptualized the entire event, from start to finish, including the flowers. Knowing I would be too busy the night before and the morning of the wedding, I enlisted the help of a friend to put the arrangements together, which she did beautifully.  Our bouquets were a combination of olive, eucalyptus, pink jasmine, cow parsley, the most dainty white forget-me-not’s and giant coral hued peonies. I wanted something loose with a slightly wild look to them, but still soft and feminine.

From the get-go we wanted to create a low key, relaxed setting reminiscent of a garden party. In The Netherlands, an outdoor celebration is highly impractical due to the weather so an indoor garden party it was going to be! At long tables dotted with candlelight and lined with jasmine, we would dine with all of our closest friends and family Italian family style, where wholesome, locally sourced produce, made into simple but delicious dishes were served in a relaxed, low-key manner. I purchased about 40 vintage and earthenware bowls from second hand stores around town for the dishes to be served in, and our fabulous caterers served clusters of amazing dishes along the tables. Because there would be a lot going on on the tables food wise, I wanted to keep the rest very simple and pared down.  I am naturally drawn to muted shades and natural colour palettes so a combination of blush, olive, cream, pistachio, coral and fig just felt right. Natural but feminine. For the tables, I created centrepieces from clusters of fine brass candlesticks which I sourced at Hélène Millot along with the most beautiful mismatched collection of silver and bone cutlery. I wanted to keep the rest organic and simple, but with the same femininity that flowed through the rest of the scheme. I paired simple white plates with biodegradable plates by VerTerra made from fallen palm leaves to give the tables an organic quality. On top of each wine glass was a little wooden skewer with blueberries and blackberries on it, and on each place setting there was a little home made rhubarb and orange preserve infused with cinnamon and fresh ginger. My bridesmaids all helped to craft the little fabric jam toppers of different colours and fabrics.

From the start we knew we wanted to invest in a fabulous wedding photographer, and having worked with Anoushcka Rokebrand several times on editorial shoots, I knew in my heart she was the one for the job. She has produced the most stunning images for us, which we will forever treasure, along with the most gorgeous wedding video by Ray Pluym Cinematography. I highly recommend investing in a VERY good wedding photographer. Hiring Ray and Anoushcka was the best investment we made for our wedding, hands down. The collection of photographs capture each and every detail of our big day, and we couldn’t be happier!

Suppliers

Louise

After a decade-long career in corporate interior design, I took a giant leap of faith, left the security of an office job, and founded B.LOVED in 2011 as a platform for romantic and beautiful wedding inspiration. Thanks to a whole lot of creativity, hard work and passion, my gamble paid off and B.LOVED became one of the leading wedding blogs in the UK.

You’ll also find me working as an Editorial Stylist, where I design and curate beautiful photoshoots for wedding and lifestyle brands, as well as contributing as a founding member of bridal inspiration hub Aisle Society, and running wedding industry community the B.LOVED Hive from our super pretty base in London. Yep, I definitely have the best job in the world.