Wendy Nicole Barclay (Nicole), 31, married William Cowell de Gruchy, 31, at Babington House in Somerset on 7th June 2018. She says:
My main ambition for our wedding day was for it to feel genuine, relaxed and, of course, for our guests to have an amazing time. I didn’t want to do anything for the sake of it. If I found myself using the word “should”, I abandoned the idea. This meant avoiding staged photography and keeping things natural so we'd have more time with our guests. I’m the last of my close friends to get married, so I know how fast the day goes by. I wanted to be present during every moment, which meant spending time thinking about ways to ensure I'd feel carefree. Our wedding planner, Alexandra Merri, was instrumental in achieving this – she was basically a BFF by the big day and I couldn't have done any of it without her.
Choosing a florist was such a pivotal decision for us and Early Hours' work impressed me from the start. I wanted a wild, untamed look like a meadow in bloom – as if the natural world was a part of the space. I had made a Pinterest board containing all the in-season blooms I liked before I met the team. After a creative planning session during which I shared my ideas, I felt that I trusted the florists completely and left the rest to them.
The highlight of the evening reception inside Babington house was seeing our dining table adorned with a meadow-inspired floral feature that ran the length of the room. White rose and lemon leaf candles by Jo Loves filled the space with their fragrance and added a romantic glow to the room. These sat alongside brass candlesticks with light blue taper candles, whose flames danced between the flowers.
I wanted a timeless wedding dress; it had to be something that, when I looked back at pictures in 30 years time, I'd still love. I also didn’t want it to be pure white, as I don't think it suits my skin tone. So, I was open to ways I could mix a tradition with something a little softer and more flattering on me.
Our first appointment was at Pronovias on Bond Street in London. This was my first time trying on wedding dresses and it was hilarious. I put on every shape you can imagine and what I thought I wanted (sleeves) looked atrocious on me. Funnily enough, what I said I definitely did NOT want, a fishtail style, ended up looking the best! The Pronovias Orma gown has six layers of embroidered tulle, lace and guipure with floral motifs and white over a champagne/nude overlay. This gave me the off-white shade I was seeking. The v-neck and back paired with thicker straps made it modest enough for our chapel wedding and comfortable enough for me to wear throughout day. Most importantly, I felt like myself in it.
Photographs by McKinley Rodgers