Zack Mclaughlin and I were married on the 11th of August in 2022 and 2023, after three delayed dates and all sorts of pandemic chaos we finally got to say I do not once but twice. Part one was our Anglo Indian ceremony with part two focusing on the legal bit. We set the date a year later because what better time to do the paper part than our paper anniversary.
After so many delays the dress was actually the last thing on my mind, as a stylist I’m used to pulling outfits together at a moment’s notice and I knew I wanted my dress to reflect my personality and the joy finally getting married legally would bring Zack and I. That said I’d actually spotted my Ashish dress on the runway the year before, enquiring about it it was due out the following year and it was only when browsing dresses on Matches that it popped up, one left in my size…I took it as a sign that it was totally meant to be and swiftly ordered it.
As it was part two I had a really clear idea of what I wanted the dress to be for the civil wedding, it was completely different to part one and actually I think I love it the most (don’t tell my other dresses).
As a stylist, art director and content creator the pressure was on, especially so after our Anglo Indian ceremony outfits which were just incredible, I wasn’t 100% sure which direction to go in for our civil wedding. Friends and family would often ask me what I was wearing but as someone that is very last minute with everything, I had no idea until I knew. It was miraculously easy to find the one.
The Style Support
I’m so particular all of my friends and family wouldn’t have dared getting involved. I just know what I want. That said I did share my dress with a few special people as the day drew closer and they agreed it couldn’t have been more me.
The shoes came first, I’d been invited to a The Wedding Edition event with Christian Louboutin and spotted the most incredible rainbow shoes there. I’d mentally bookmarked them for something fabulous, but it wasn’t until later in the year that I realised they would be the perfect fit. The hunt was on, I’d almost given up when on the off chance I headed to the concession in Selfridges, and they had a pair about to come off hold for another customer. I literally hovered around for an hour waiting until they were mine. I’ve worn them on multiple occasions since, they go with everything, and I really wanted to choose accessories that I would wear again and again and again.
My earrings were from Simone Rocha, I picked them up at her sample sale the year before and knew they’d come in handy. My handbag was my something old from Shrimps, it was a birthday gift from Zack. My birdcage veil was a last-minute addition from Jennifer Behr, she makes the best headbands and veils in my opinion. I loved the chunkier headband, and it was just the perfect finishing touch for a legal wedding.
The Pink Lehenga Dress:
For our part one we had an Anglo-Indian wedding, celebrating my heritage but also bringing our two families together. In the Indian culture brides would traditionally wear a red sari to get married in but in more recent years Indian bridal fashion has changed with brides choosing a top and skirt called a Lengha. It’s much more fun and modern and a little easier to wear. I really wanted to stay true to me and wear something in my favourite colour – pink. Zack’s favourite colour is green and I’m a firm believer pink and green should always be seen so we’d had that colour theme in mind throughout our wedding planning from the stationery to the table settings.
It was one of the first Lenghas I’d actually tried on – during the pandemic we weren’t able to go to into stores but could luckily browse online and via video calls. I couldn’t believe it and had to try on some others to make sure it was the one but it was really so me and so unique with the ombré pink silk and delicate detailed embroidery. I was in love.
The Evening Look
Indian bridal wear is often quite uncomfortable and can be really heavy to wear. My incredible ombré pink Lengha was covered top to tail in embroidery and whilst it was absolutely stunning it wasn’t the most comfortable for all day wear so I wanted to change into something lightweight and more floaty and fun for the dance floor.
I worked with Charlie Brear to create a few different looks from one dress so I could have lots of versatility on the day. I loved the feather skirt, it’s just so fun and so me and was an ode to my husbands love of birds and nature and the reason we chose our wedding venue Elmley Nature Reserve. The skirt could easily be detached and replaced with a tulle skirt and matching cape it was really fun and I loved that it had three looks in one. Perfect for the bride that wanted it all.
Advice For Brides
Try on everything including the dresses that you think won’t suit you as they are usually the one that you’ll end up going for. Don’t feel pressured by wedding traditions or your family, everyone has an opinion but it’s only yours that matters. Enjoy finding your dress and finding something that feels you and makes you feel fabulous. I luckily got to wear my dress again this year for the Ashish show at London Fashion week and it made me feel incredible to put it on again, it’s so important to find a dress that makes you feel like your best self. I’m going to look back at our photos forever with a ginormous grin on my face.
Favourite Photo Of The Dress
It’s so hard to choose. Our photographer were just amazing and captured the magic. We’d booked one of those vintage wedding buses to pick up our guests and transport them to the reception venue but just before we went into the registrars room Zack got a call to say it was stuck in traffic and wasn’t going to get there on time so we ended up getting the regular bus. Everyone must have thought we were bonkers but it was such a fun journey and I will treasure this photo, what a story to tell our grandkids one day.
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