Chic Weddings/Modern Weddings

Festive & Chic London Town Hall Wedding

City Chic London Town Hall Winter Wedding – Miss Gen Photography 3

Oh how we adore the way certain cities dress up for the holidays. Garlands, lights & festive cheer – for a winter couple it’s almost as though everyone is preparing the streets for your wedding! This international couple decided to take advantage of London’s festive vibes for their December Town Hall wedding.

Having met and spent the first years of their relationship in the city, it only natural that Samantha & Davide bring their friends and family to London to celebrate their “I do’s”. Planning from afar (California) the two kept things easy and chose places & vendors that were familiar and special to them both. Hiring local florists they already knew and loved, booking a neighborhood pub for their chic reception & marrying at Islington Town Hall in a festive manner.

Marrying at Christmas time, their Islington pub was decorated in proper winter wear – greenery & gold, pomegranate & citrus, with candles & garland dressing the fireplace. The couple, too, was dressed for December in a contemporary knee-length dress, chic winter coat & swanky Armani suit to match.

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Our Love Story

Davide and I met my first year living in London when I moved into my first shared house (thanks Spare Room!) While I was new to London, he had been living there for about 15 years. And while our connection was pretty immediate, the fact that we were living together did not make for the smoothest of starts to a relationship. Fortunately for us, the landlord decided to sell the house about 4 months into my moving in! We were together for 5 years before we decided to try a move back to my native California, and were engaged a year after arriving. The choice to have our wedding in London was immediate. We both knew that we wanted to be married where we had first met.

We were most excited about seeing all of our best friends and family in the same room, for the first time since moving away from London 1.5 years ago. Islington was the neighbourhood we called home together for 5 years. We wanted to include some of our favourite locations in our celebration, and be in an area we know and love.

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The Fashion

Davide had owned this beautiful Armani suit for a year or so before the wedding, and like most guys, rarely had the excuse to wear it. I always loved how he looked wearing it. I fell in love with my dress, because it felt like a match to his suit. I could just see them going out together as a couple. Clean, contemporary and tailored.

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The Flowers

We had lived up the road from Grace and Thorn in Hackney during our final year in London, and I had been lucky enough to receive a birthday bouquet from them once. They are masters at the “undone” arrangement. Planning this wedding from abroad, we knew we could trust them to create something unique and seasonal without going overboard on the frills and what would be typical of a “wedding look”.

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The Ceremony

We loved the idea of the ceremony as a respected and formal commitment to each other, so did not write our own vows. We did, however, ask two members of our wedding party to do a reading each. Davide picked one for my bridesmaid to read, and I picked one for his groomsman. They were a poem by Margaret Atwood titled “Habitation”, and an excerpt from Hemingway’s “A Farewell to Arms”. Both capturing at once complimentary and completely opposing views of love, partnership and commitment to another.

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The Photography

We had been browsing a couple of wedding blogs for general ideas for the day, and Gen‘s work began to stand out from the rest. She has such a unique voice in her work, and managed to capture each wedding as its own unique and personal event. Each story was filled with a sense of who the couple was, the family and friends that filled their lives, and a true sense of their own personal style.

Gen has an amazing ability to form a story of the day with her work, as well as capture fine art quality moments that are worthy of framing and holding in a special place in the home for years to come. She captures the small, unseen moments of the day, showing the unique aspects of each wedding, and the people who make it. Gen herself is at once a fly on the wall, and an absolute presence of calm in a day that can be quite chaotic and overwhelming for the bride and groom. We couldn’t have been happier with the results of her work, as well as having her as a guest on our special day.

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One of our favourite photos from the day, is of us leaving home with our wedding party to walk to Town Hall. It is cropped in close, so that only our torsos and held hands are visible. All the beautiful detail of what we were wearing, where we were and who we were surrounded by is there, but somehow not seeing our faces has allowed this to be a quietly personal and private moment, only for us. We will forever remember that walk together, and this photo captured that moment completely.

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Favorite Moments

Our time spent with Gen, having our photos taken as a couple between the ceremony and reception, will forever be held close to our hearts. In a day of being split apart constantly and trying to spend time with many people, this moment was just for us. A minute to spend together and let it all sink in.

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The Vibes & Decor

Holiday festive feasting! Being so close to Christmas, we really wanted to build on the festive air that will already be so present in the city, and in all of our guests. We’re not big into “colour themes” so loved the idea that there could be subtle hits of celebratory gold, in and around a real holiday banquet vibe. The dinner was decorated with lush green garlands down the tables and on mantle pieces, with winter fruits interwoven. To add to the holiday feel, there were gold geometric garlands mixed in, and gold origami crane place cards for guests.

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Advice to Other Couples

Think about the tone, style and size wedding you have in mind, and pick your dream venue based on that, first and before anything else! Having these basic “constraints” to work against will stop guest lists from getting out of hand, or outside requests from derailing what you had in mind and will make every other addition you make to the day an intuitive one.

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