Le Grand Amour


Emirates Bride - - REAL-LIFE/WEDDING -

Their Story

A Satur­day af­ter­noon bar­be­cue in a sunny back gar­den in south Lon­don was where it all be­gan. It was 2011 when Rob and EW style di­rec­tor Jade hap­pened to be at mu­tual friend’s gar­den party. There were a cou­ple of glances through the smoke com­ing from the bar­be­cue, a po­lite ‘hello, how do you do?’ and then, with the en­cour­age­ment of a talk­a­tive mu­tual friend they got chat­ting. And didn’t stop un­til late into the evening.

On Mon­day, Jade re­ceived a call at her of­fice and much to her sur­prise, it was Rob call­ing to say that he was out­side her build­ing with the um­brella she had left be­hind at the party. A se­ries of dates fol­lowed dur­ing that Lon­don sum­mer of 2011. “Af­ter our first date, I re­mem­ber call­ing my best friend to say there was ‘some­thing’ about Rob that I re­ally liked, “says Jade. “I was only 25 at the time and wasn’t look­ing for any­thing se­ri­ous, but I was def­i­nitely in­trigued.”

“Over one year later, I got of­fered a job in Dubai,” says Jade. “Rob told me to go, en­joy it, and make the most of the op­por­tu­nity and that we would fig­ure it all out. His sup­port and the cer­tainty that we would sur­vive the long dis­tance placed be­tween us told me that he was the one.” Six months later, Rob em­i­grated to Dubai. In 2015, Rob popped the ques­tion while on a ro­man­tic hol­i­day away in Provence – a des­ti­na­tion that quickly turned into their dream wed­ding lo­ca­tion.

The Wed­ding

VENUE: Find­ing Blanche Fleur was as sim­ple as a Google search for Rob and Jade. “We knew from the mo­ment we saw the pic­tures it was for us and we put a de­posit down with­out go­ing to visit – we like to call it love at first sight,” says Rob. The 14th cen­tury for­mer mill is sit­u­ated on a small is­land sur­rounded by a moat. It has been con­verted into a shabby-chic B&B with a pool and beau­ti­ful old fea­tures that added char­ac­ter to the day. Do­maine de Blanche Fleur, Provence in the South of France (blanchefleur.com)

NUM­BER OF GUESTS: It was an in­ti­mate af­fair with 46 close friends and fam­ily.

THEME: “We both agreed the morn­ing af­ter Rob pro­posed that our day would be a beau­ti­ful and re­laxed af­fair, com­ple­mented by de­li­cious food and drink, great mu­sic and ex­cel­lent com­pany – ev­ery­thing else would be an added bonus. We wanted the day to be fun, re­laxed and full of colour with plenty of laugh­ter.”

DRESS: “Fun­nily enough I found my dress while re­search­ing gowns for Emi­rates

Bride. I was in­stantly struck by this ex­tremely cool brand, Houghton NYC (based in the US), as the dresses didn’t con­form to tra­di­tion. I wanted to wear some­thing that no one had seen be­fore.” The prob­lem for Jade was get­ting her hands on her dream dress. Although the cou­ple had booked their venue via the in­ter­net, there was zero chance the bride would buy a wed­ding dress with­out try­ing it on first. “Only five months be­fore the big day, I flew to LA for a shoot and Houghton NYC kindly shipped the dress to a lo­cal LA bou­tique called LOHO. I touched down in LAX and rushed to the bridal shop. Thirty min­utes later I left the bou­tique, the proud, al­beit tired, owner of a bridal gown.”

VEIL: Jade wore an un­der­stated fine tulle veil that didn’t over­power the dress. boandluca.com

SHOES: “Glit­ter-coated Gucci mules that I’ve worn time and time again since the wed­ding.”

FLOW­ERS: “We met our florist Ce­line on a visit to France, a few months be­fore the day. Us­ing our best high school French we told her ex­actly what we wanted. We left feel­ing slightly anx­ious but also ex­cited about how Ce­line would in­ter­pret our vi­sion us­ing our mood boards and clumsy de­scrip­tions. But she cre­ated the most beau­ti­ful mix of in-sea­son blooms for the bou­ton­nières, the bou­quets, the ta­bles and the al­tar. We were thrilled with the re­sult!” says Jade.

MENU: Af­ter a two-hour tast­ing lunch with a French cater­ing com­pany the cou­ple de­cided on a tra­di­tional Provençal menu that in­cluded spit-roasted lamb, pissal­adière (a French-style an­chovy pizza), char­cu­terie boards, slates of cheese, warm baguettes and a va­ri­ety of de­li­cious desserts in­clud­ing a rum baba that the groom still talks about to this day. mef­fre-trai­teur.com

BRIDESMAIDS: “My beau­ti­ful sis­ters were my bridesmaids and wore flo­ral silk maxi dresses from Top­shop Unique. One of my favourite designers, Gül Hürgel (gul­hurgel.com), cus­tom-de­signed the three flower girl dresses for me.”

MU­SIC: Jade’s fa­ther walked her down the aisle to an acous­tic cover of Elvis Pres­ley’s ‘ I Can’t Help Fall­ing In Love With You'. Mu­sic played a huge part in the day, with a sur­prise swing jazz trio of cheer­ful French­men to en­ter­tain the guests.

CAKE: A tra­di­tional French-style cake called a cro­quem­bouche: crème patis­sère­filled prof­iteroles that were pre­sented as a tow­er­ing pyra­mid cov­ered in sparklers – “Its en­trance pro­duced more than a few gasps!” Says Rob.

INVITATIONS: Rob and Jade com­mis­sioned a lo­cal il­lus­tra­tor, Ayang Cem­paka (ayangcem­paka.com) to de­sign their invitations. The en­velopes were sealed with a heart-shaped gold wax stamp.

TABLE SET­TING: As a stylist, the small de­tails re­ally mat­tered to Jade. “I wanted to show our per­son­al­i­ties, but also have some fun and hope­fully raise a smile among guests with the table set­tings.” They had cus­tom-made linen table run­ners trimmed with broderie anglaise. They coated plas­tic farm an­i­mals in gold paint for the name place set­tings. A mix­ture of jars and vin­tage vases held the flow­ers, and they filled the room with can­dles. Each place had its own il­lus­trated menu by neon­struc­ture.com.

Lit­tle Black Bridal Book






Jade’s Top Tips

1.“Have fun! You will mostly likely spend a year plan­ning your big day, so en­joy the tast­ings, the venue vis­its and cre­at­ing the per­sonal de­tails with your part­ner. This is the fun bit and you will never do it again!” 2. “Once the day has ar­rived, for­get about the de­tails and en­joy get­ting ready with your best wwfriends and fam­ily. The day goes fast, but Rob and I made sure to sneak a few spare mo­ments alone to­gether.” 3. “Do what makes you happy, not what any­one else thinks. Of course make sure guests have a fab­u­lous day, but don’t feel pres­sured into invit­ing a long lost aun­tie. Ul­ti­mately it’s your day.”

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