Kat —— I work for a sports marketing consultancy in London and Simon runs his own business. We travel a lot and are both social souls who spend as much time as possible with friends and family. We met a decade ago on the dating website, Plenty of Fish. I was resistant to online dating but was convinced by my flatmate to give it a go.
I found out that she had arranged a date with Si and had been speaking to him, pretending to be me! She was convinced he was the man for me. I wouldn’t say there was one firework moment that made me think he was ‘the one’, but it’s hard not to feel attracted to Simon—he’s a high-energy character with real warmth. After a year, I realized he was the person I wanted to live life with.
We got engaged after five years on a game reserve in South Africa. We were married another five years after that. My parents have a holiday home in the South of France and every school holiday was spent there. We used to have a Mirabelle yellow plum tree at the end of our drive, and my father would reach out the window and pass back handfuls to my sister.
I wanted to inject this vibrant jewel of colour into our wedding, keeping everything else natural. We didn’t create a vision board for the wedding but I was very clear about what I didn’t want: no formality, anything rustic, and no shabby chic. We knew with absolute certainty that if we asked our friends to travel to France, we would cater for everything else once they were there. We invited 25 to stay with us in the chateau from Thursday to Monday and covered all meals and drinks in between.
We held an off-site at a nearby vineyard the night before the wedding, and a hungover brunch complete with rotisserie meats, fresh salads, and Bloody Marys the day after. Emma Beaumont made my wedding dress at her atelier in Manchester. I spotted her on Instagram at the very early stages of planning and suspected I might end up with a custom creation. I tried a handful of dresses on in bridal boutiques in London but always had Emma in the back of my mind. I found myself liking only part of a dress, never a whole dress, but the top half of my dress took inspiration from something I’d tried on, and we worked from there.
It was a fun process, but you do need to be clear in articulating your vision as this is what inspires the first sketch. The overskirt, which I wore until dinner, was playful, fun, and moved beautifully. I removed this for the wedding breakfast, so when we were introduced and entered the dining space, I had a new look without having to change. Simon is Casual in his style, most comfortable in boardies and flip-flops. He’d always remarked that he never felt good in a suit, largely due to the cut not fitting right, so he wanted something custom-made for the wedding. He ended up requesting a black tie, something I was very happy for him to go alone in wearing, with his groomsmen in suits of the same colour, so he really stood out as the man of the moment
PHOTOGRAPHER: Emmylou Kemmy, @emmylou.kelly / LOCATION, DRINKS & CATERING: Château Rigaud, @chateaurigaud / DRESS: Emma Beaumont, @emma_beaumont_atelier / KAT’S SHOES: Aquazzura, @aquazzura / ENTERTAINMENT: Courtier Music, @courtiermusicofficial / FLORA: Folies et Fleurs @folies.et.fleurs / MAKEUP: Laura Cawte, @laura_cawte
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