Today’s I Chose Cicily Bride is the lovely Clare who wore Jesus Peiro 6005 for her wedding day. Her beautiful & relaxed wedding day images landed on our desk on a chilly October morning and to say the least they have us pining for those warmer sunnier days of summer!
Sit back and enjoy reading all about Clare’s wedding planning journey.
Real Bride Clare says “I Chose Cicily”
How did you meet your soul mate and how did he propose?
I met Alex back in 2006, when we were at second year at University. We happened to be in the same college with mutual friends, who were not very subtle when I mentioned that I liked him! It took us a while to pluck up the courage to speak to one another properly, and this mainly happened on nights out, where there was plenty of dutch courage involved.
Alex and I went on a long weekend to Barcelona in December 2014 to celebrate my birthday, and I had no idea that he was going to propose! It actually nearly happened in Luton airport (unbeknown to me) when Alex’s hand luggage got pulled over to check, but luckily I didn’t notice! It was a beautiful sunny day, and we were on a rowing boat at the Parc de la Ciutadella when he asked me to marry him. It was so unexpected, which made it even more special.
Where was your venue & Why did you choose it?
Alex and I both love many of the Leicestershire villages, and as I grew up in the local area, I was very keen to have our wedding close to family and friends.
We decided on having the ceremony at Beaumanor Hall. We loved the fact that the ceremony room felt small and intimate, which made the ceremony itself feel really emotional and special to us. The building and the grounds were absolutely beautiful, and we were so lucky that the weather was stunning – our photographer captured some wonderful moments of our guests throwing confetti in the garden.
We wanted a relaxed and informal reception with a picnic, and were originally looking at village halls that we could do up ourselves. However, as soon as we saw The Old Stables at The Griffin Inn in Swithland, we knew it was where we wanted to have it. The main reasons we loved it so much was how excited the wedding organisers, Jay and Amy, were when we told them our ideas – they really made us feel like our day was completely personal. We had an informal picnic, where guests could help themselves, lawn games and ice cream outside, followed up by a dressing up box and some woodfired pizza in the evening! It was an absolutely perfect day and I wouldn’t have changed anything.
How did you find shopping for your wedding dress & Do you have any advice for brides-to-be?
I originally was adamant that I was going to buy a high street wedding dress – I had visions of getting bullied into choosing something I hated at a bridal shop as I’m far too polite to say what I really think! However, my mum and sister persuaded me to book a couple of appointments at different bridal shops just to see what I thought.
Cicily was the third shop I picked to go to. I loved looking at their website for different designers, and really liked the style of dresses they had in stock. Lisa was so relaxed and welcoming and really spent the time to listen to what I liked and what I didn’t to help pick out a few dresses for me to try on. I didn’t feel pressured at all. I had originally booked to try on a few Augusta Jones dresses as I loved the lace designs they had, but in the end, Lisa picked out the most beautiful Jesus Peiro dress that was off the shoulder, and had a scalloped lace hem. As soon as I tried it on, I knew it felt different to the dresses I’d tried previously.
Once I’d picked my dress, Cicily made the process so easy. It was really useful that they opened late on a Wednesday, so I could pop after work to get measured up and pick accessories. They also stored my dress at the shop until I needed it for the wedding, which made sure it still looked as beautiful on the day. They couldn’t have been more helpful.
The advice I would give to brides would be that it isn’t as scary as I thought it would be! The whole process was actually really lovely, and I felt relaxed and at ease when trying on lots of different dresses. It also helps to take someone you trust with you – it was so helpful to get a second opinion if I wasn’t so sure.
How did you accessorise your dress…Veil, Headpeice, belts, shoes etc?
When I first got engaged, I bought a bridal magazine and instantly fell in love with Rachel Simpson shoes – they are just so elegant and pretty, and I knew I would wear them again after the wedding itself. I picked the pale blue Mimosa peep toe shoes in the end, which were just so comfortable on the day. Cicily ordered these in for me which was really helpful, and my parents got me them as a 30th birthday present.
I also really liked the designer Marie Canning, who makes the most beautiful porcelain jewellery and hair garlands. I noticed that Cicily had some of her pieces on display, which then led me to commission Marie to make a bespoke porcelain flower hair vine as I really wanted something I could have in my hair all day, and something I could keep afterwards. My sister then bought me some matching earrings for my birthday that I could wear on the day too.
The last decision I made was on the veil – I wasn’t sure if I wanted one or not. In the end, I picked a full length veil, which was sheer enough to see the beautiful button detail on the back of my dress, and which, on the day, I loved wearing.
Who did your hair & make-up on the day?
Aaron from The Bridal Hairstylist came to do my hair at my mum and dad’s house on the morning of the wedding, which was really lovely as the morning felt really relaxed. I wanted an updo to show off the hair vine and back of my dress, and it looked really lovely on the day.
I decided that I wanted to do my make up myself, but I went to MAC to get primer and foundation that would last longer. As it was, the day was so hot that it was needed!
I was a bit last minute when it came to getting my nails done, but my friend Emily, at Hepburns in Sandiacre, squeezed me in to have a OPI gel manicure done a couple of days before. It lasted my whole honeymoon – I was so impressed!
Which florist and cake designer did you use?
I’ve known my friend Georgina since I was little, and knew that her sister Philippa owned a florist business, Flowers by Philippa, in Seagrave. Philippa really encapsulated our informal theme, and made the most beautiful bouquet with dahlias, roses, freesia and daisies for myself and my sister, Jennie. Our two flowergirls, Erin and Sophie, had a bunch of daisies to hold too, which looked gorgeous with their Liberty print dresses.
My friend Bethany and her wonderful mum made our three tier wedding cake – in fact, Bethany made some tasters to take to the hen do which went down a storm! We used the cake as part of our dessert for the wedding breakfast, accompanied with scones and jam, and it tasted absolutely delicious. It was really lovely to have something homemade from a friend, it made the day feel really personal.
Which Photographer did you use?
We picked Chris Terry as we loved the way he captured moments of the day – quite often we didn’t even know he was there! We did a pre wedding photo shoot, which I would really recommend, as it made us feel more comfortable on the day itself when we had photos of just the two of us. We couldn’t recommend Chris highly enough.
My friend Georgie, who unfortunately couldn’t make our wedding, very kindly offered her vintage photo booth for the evening, which was so kind of her. My friend Craig then manned this for the evening, so got to witness many of my crazy friends! Everyone loved it!
What was the grooms outfit, did he get to choose it!?
Alex picked a navy three piece suit from Reiss, with a mid blue knitted polka dot tie. Alex didn’t want anything overly formal, so picked a suit that he could wear again.
The rest of the ushers then wore their own suits, but we gave them navy knitted ties with different coloured polka dots from Frederick Thomas.
What did your Bridesmaids?
My sister Jennie wore the most beautiful silk bridesmaid dress from Ghost, in Boudoir Pink. I wanted Jennie to pick her own dress, and it suited her perfectly.
Erin and Sophie, Alex’s nieces, were our flowergirls and wore Liberty print dresses in Blue Emilia and Pink Emilia, made by Tinker and Belle. Gabby, who made the dresses, picked matching waist ribbons to match Jennie’s bridemaid dress, and then the girls wore coloured pumps from Victoria to match. They looked adorable, and comfortable enough to play around all day too!
What was the best moment of the day?
There are too many to pick!
I vividly remember standing outside the ceremony doors, and I could suddenly hear our guitarists, Rob and Roland from The Burgundys, playing Ben Howard, ‘Old Pine’, the song I was walking down the aisle to. I had been calm and relaxed up until that moment, and then suddenly was overwhelmed with emotion, which then set my dad and my sister off too!
I loved our ceremony – it was intimate and emotional, and felt like it was just about Alex and I. We wrote our own vows, which felt really personal, and it was so lovely that all our family and friends were there to witness it.
And finally, the dressing up box on the dancefloor went down a treat! It was great to see everyone having a brilliant time, eating pizza, dancing to The Burgundys, and wearing random hats and wigs!
Would you do anything differently?
The only thing I would do differently is not to try and do too much at once – Alex and I had bought our first home in April, that needs quite a lot of work doing to it. We were trying to decorate bedrooms and sort out wedding admin at the same time, which was very stressful at times.
Where did you go for a rest!? – Honeymoon!
We were so lucky that we had been to India earlier on in the year, to see our good friends Balu and Neha get married, so we had an amazing trip with our uni friends, where we went travelling for a couple of weeks to Agra, Amritsar, Dharmsala and Delhi.
We decided to stay in the UK after our wedding, and spent two weeks staying in B&Bs around Devon and Cornwall. We absolutely loved it – we ate in some amazing places, went on long walks round the coast, and generally just chilled out. It was bliss.
Looking back at your day, how would you describe it?
Sunny, emotional, chilled, funny, lovely and amazing!
It really was an amazing day, and we feel very lucky to have such wonderful friends and family to share it with us.
What advice would you give brides to be?
I was really glad that I had a few days off before the wedding to get final things sorted. This put me in the right mindset, and I didn’t feel stressed leading up to the day. It was also nice to do little things, like get my nails done!
Try and get the big things booked in as soon as you can, then that way you can relax and really focus on the things that make the day personal nearer the time.