Laura & Adam by Sandra Von Riekhoff – Divine day Photography

Tell us a little about yourselves, what you do, what you love, what is unique about you and your relationship…

Adam and I started dating in 2010 when living in Columbus Ohio. I moved from England after graduating University in London to work as a Designer for Abercrombie and Fitch.

We lived in Ohio, where Adam is from, for a few years before moving to New York and then on to San Francisco, where we now live in Sausalito. Adam works in finance and I am a Designer at Old Navy. We live in our house with our family of two cats, Kevin and Lionel and dog Gary. It was important to us that Gary was at the Wedding by our side, celebrating with us. We love spending our spare time traveling and exploring California and hiking in the headlands behind our house. We can step out of our front door and hike straight over to the Golden Gate Bridge- pretty special! 

Tell us about your special day, was there a specific theme or style? Tell us a little about the setting, the styling and some of your favourite details…

The most important part of planning our wedding was to make sure as many of our friends and family could attend. Adam and I have been together for almost ten years and live in San Francisco, so trying to decide between England, where I am from, and USA was really hard! We finally landed on The Cotswolds as the destination, which is close by to where I grew up, as we loved the idea of having our family and friends experience a traditional English country wedding. Painswick is the most quintessential Cotswold village and was just the most perfect location we could have wished for. We chose a traditional church ceremony in the gorgeous village Church and then the reception at Hilles House, owned by Detmar Blow and home of the late Isabella Blow.

We wanted a wedding filled with love and fun and that’s exactly what it was from start to finish. We were surrounded by our families and friends from all walks of our lives. We started off the night before with a family rehearsal Dinner at The Painswick Hotel then met with all our guests for drinks at the local pub- was just amazing to see everyone come together for our wedding and in many cases meeting each other for the first time. We also chose to have a next day brunch post wedding, at Hilles House to allow us to spend as much time as possible with all our guests- enjoying another English tradition of Fish and Chips!!

As a Designer, I had a strong vision for how I wanted our wedding day to come together. We only had 9 months to plan once we had landed the September 14th date! Planning every detail from San Francisco wasn’t easy- many early morning face time calls and emails coordinating vendors. It became a second job! Hilles House has the most stunning Palace Yurt and I wanted to transform the space and make it totally personal to us. Finding the florist who shared my vision and could execute the hanging floral pieces was important to me.

I wanted color, texture in abundance and nothing too precious or perfect looking. They did a fantastic job! We had the most stunning weather on the day and it really gave us the perfect setting, including the most insane sunset and even the horse in the field next door came to join in. I wanted to add as many personal touches as I could transport over in a suitcase from SF, using Etsy to create the guests name place cards and personalized signs around the yurt. I created the tablescape using champagne glasses with names and table numbers attached. I also had personalized wedding pennants made as a nod to Adam’s American roots. My sister hand dyed the silk ribbon for the table settings using avocado stones-giving a beautiful delicate blush hue.

We wanted to have hints to both our American and English connections- having a classic american muscle car as our wedding car, american hors d’oeuvres at the champagne welcome reception, English roast beef with all the trimmings for the main dinner. We even had the guests carve the Sunday Roasts wearing chefs hats and aprons- some of them kept it on all evening and was great entertainment value! Luckily Adam loves Victoria sponge sandwich cakes as much as I do so the wedding cake was an easy decision! 

Tell us about your main outfits:

I fell in love with the Kate Half Penny dresses I’d seen online and was excited to go to their showroom when I was visiting London at Christmas. She has a beautiful romantic aesthetic which felt unique to other dresses I have tried on. I also loved the idea of wearing something British made. I immediately knew I wanted to wear the polka dot veil when I saw it- something a bit different. My evening dress was Temperley and I loved having a different look for the evening. My brief was something fun that I could dance the night away in and this was the perfect party dress. 

What were some of the most memorable/unique moments from the day?

My Favorite moment of the day was undoubtedly Adam’s speech. It was the perfect blend of heart felt emotion, shared memories and laughter. I was so proud! It makes me smile when I think about it now. This is closely followed by the evening- looking across the dance floor, dancing to our favorite songs and seeing all our mates having a blast! Wish we could do it all again… xxx 

Any advice for other couples planning to spend the rest of their lives together?

Tips for any future brides… Enjoy the run up to the big day! I hired Jen our Wedding Planner to ensure once all the details had been landed, I didn’t need to worry about the execution. This was great!! My sister and I took a trip to Soho Farmhouse a few days before the big day and I really look back and appreciate taking time to myself to relax and be in the moment. Enjoy every minute- the day goes by in a blink x 

Photography: Sandra Von Riekhoff – Divine day Photography | Ceremony location: St Mary’s Church, Painswick | Reception location: Hilles House | Bride’s ceremony gown: Kate Halfpenny | Charlotte dress Evening dress: Temperley | Rings: Engagement ring was Adam’s Grandmother’ s diamond | Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Hair accessories: Tilly Thomas Lux | Makeup: Makeup by Alexandra | Hair: Ellie at Mark Blake Hair, Gloucester | Fragrance: Byredo d’afrique | Grooms suits: Theory suit | Entertainment: Fairvue band | Photobooth: The Proper Booth | Planner: Jen | Flora: Studio Sorores | Catering and Beverages: Strawberry Fields Catering | Cake: Bake My Cake | Wedding Signs: Made by wood & wood | Custom Pennants: Oxford Pennant | Hotel: The Painswick Hotel |