The story of our wedding day began when we met 9 years ago on a night out in Shoreditch. We have been inseparable pretty much ever since. Emilio proposed on holiday in Greece in 2021, his parents have a house there and it felt so special and so private, very us. The ring is a lab grown diamond from Kimai, I’ve always said I wanted a no-conflict or second hand ring and he chose the perfect piece from Kimai. I have slender fingers and the ring suits my hands so well.
Getting married abroad didn’t come without its challenges. We had a couple of venues that fell through before we went with our wedding venue, Barsentum. It was actually one of the first venues we looked at so it was just meant to be. Looking back now it was absolutely perfect and we’re so pleased with how the day went.
I wore a Grace Loves Lace dress and veil with Stuart Weitzman shoes.
Emilio wore a bespoke Casely-Hayford suit that I didn’t see until we met each other at the aisle and I couldn’t believe how handsome he looked.
My something blue was my garter from Buebella and my borrowed was pearls that my nan gave me – she took some off of an old dress of hers and we sewed them to the back of my dress. She said they are borrowed because she wants them back with a wink (she doesn’t actually want them back).
I went with GLL because I fell in love with the dress on Pinterest even before I was engaged. Emilio went to Casely-Hayford because they are the best in the game for bespoke tailoring with a touch of cool.
All my jewellery, bar my rings, was from the Monica Vinader x Mother of Pearl collection.
Emilio wore a vintage Gucci watch and some custom tinted sunglasses classes from Bridges & Brows which matched his suit.
My bridesmaids wore the same colour, but different looks from Meshki (one via Depop), with jewellery loaned from Loveness Lee. I let them choose their own outfits, but stressed that it had to be ones that they’d wear again. Luckily for me I’m the same size as both of them so I’m able to borrow them too.
The flower girls wore beautiful dusk pink dresses from Reiss that they already owned, but hadn’t worn yet. They matched the colour palette perfectly. Then we had the babies, Emilio’s niece wore a Stella McCartney dress and my nephew wore the cutest little bow tie set from Next.
The bridal party were gifted engraved bracelets from Monica Vinader and personalised pouches Elizabeth Scarlett.
The best man wore a gorgeous cream suit from Reiss and his wedding present which was a pair of sunglasses from Bridges and Brows.
Emilio’s older sister and I designed the tables together, with light touches because the crockery was the star of the show that day. The plates and dishes came with the venue and were absolutely stunning colourful ceramics. All menus and table cards came from Papier.
Our favours were little glass bottles with dried flowers and a handwritten note to each guest inside. It was something that our friends Olivia and Adam did a few years before at their wedding that we loved and stole for ours. Everyone got either a heartfelt message or a funny memory. There were only 2 people we didn’t know (friend’s new partners) and they got a personalised joke. Thank you to Emilio’s little sister Isabella for writing all the handwritten notes because it took ages and she has the most beautiful handwriting.
Food & Drink
The food was absolutely incredible, we had a traditional 5 course Italian feast and the food didn’t stop flowing throughout the day. From mozzarella made in front of the guests at the drinks reception to grilled octopus and the best aubergine parmigiana I’ve ever had in my entire life (no exaggeration) at the reception dinner, the guests were well fed.
For drinks we had an Aperol cart that served 4 cocktails: Mastiha Aperol Spritz (a Greek Cypriot twist on the Italian classic to nod to Emilio’s roots and favourite drink), Gin & Tonic, Margarita and Negroni) as well as local wine and Prosecco. The Mastiha was a gift from one of our guests’ family homes in Greece.
We are so lucky to have so many musicians and DJs in our friendship group. Both my Dad and Emilio are DJs so the entertainment element of the wedding was taken extremely seriously.
The ceremony was an emotional journey because my family organised a huge surprise and flew our friends MiC LOWRY over to sing me down the aisle. They sang an acoustic arrangement of Un-thinkable by Alicia Keys and as soon as I saw them when I got to the top of the aisle I started to ugly cry. Now every time I hear this song I cry my eyes out. They also did a mini-performance at the reception that got everyone up and dancing.
To add to the emotional rollercoaster, Emilio’s family friend and award-winning songwriter, Beau Nox, performed an acoustic version of his song “Cherubim”. Remarkably, it was the first time his mother had ever heard him perform. His rendition was stunning, and I couldn’t help but sing along, as “Cherubim” is one of my favourite songs.
The bridesmaids walked down to Collide by Tiana Major9 and our first dance was to Beauty in the Dark by The Isley Brothers & Mos Def – a song we’d spent lockdown slow dancing to.
As you can imagine the reception was a real party. We had Emilio, Subculture, Sheeb DJ and my dad Fitzroy on the decks throughout the night and then the next day at our pool party. It felt like we were in an actual night club because the sound system was out of this world thanks to Izaak from East London Audio who drove it over from London as a wedding gift. We are so grateful to have such good friends! Our wedding was basically a wedding, concert and club night rolled into one. It was so us.
Beauty Regime & Wellness
Getting married in a remote part of Italy meant there were a few things I just had to source from London to ensure I had what I needed. Hair and makeup for myself and the bridal party was done by Natasha and Cimone from Something Blue Hair and Makeup. When I was trying to find inspiration for hair and makeup there was a real lack of representation of curly hair across the internet. It’s quite common for women with curly and afro hair to wear their hair straight or up for their big days. I wanted to look like me, but the best I’ve ever looked, so I asked Natasha to style my hair in it’s natural state and go for a minimal makeup look. I don’t think I’ve ever looked more beautiful and would choose Natasha and Cimone all over again if I had the chance. Everyone looked stunning and my mum to this day won’t stop talking about how perfect her hair looked at my wedding.
I’m lucky that my younger brother’s girlfriend is also my nail artist, so Lauren Ashleigh Nails created a bespoke gold chrome nail the day before my wedding and it was lovely to have my go-to there with me.
Pre-wedding, Emilio and I had a facial and light therapy at The Light Clinic in Selfridges and my brows were done at Blink Brow, the only place I trust with my brows.
Favourite Wedding Gifts
We have everything we need so asked for a contributions to our honeymoon fund or charity donations to Grief Encounter, a charity really close to Emilio and his family.
We are currently planning our honeymoon for 2024, we’re hoping to go to Cape Town and Botswana, but TBC on details yet. Whatever it is we cannot wait.
Venue & Caterer: @barsentum
Groom outfit: @caselyhayfordlondon
Florist: Venues own
Tableware: Venues own
Wedding website: @theknot
Makeup & Hair: Natasha Davies & Cimone at @sbhm_stylists
Gift list: @theknot
Best Man gift: @bridgesandbrows
Wedding Planner: Emilio planned the wedding – he runs a creative production agency – studiostilton.com
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