All images courtesy of Richard Sena Photography, www.richardsena.co.uk
Smithfield’s and Sweeps
Craig and Samantha's London wedding epitomised English style
How it all began: Craig first laid eyes on Samantha amidst the
hustle and bustle of Smithfield’s popular London haunt ‘Smiths’, whilst having dinner with friends. With her aunt and uncle, Samantha was oblivious to Craig’s gaze! But, when everyone moved upstairs from the bar to the restaurant, the two were on tables close to one another. By the end of the meal, Craig plucked up the courage to go over and introduce himself - saying that his friend fancied her and she should call him next week! The pair say: “There was an instant attraction, and the rest is history.” Staying true to his original courageous form, Craig proposed to Samantha at midnight on New Year’s Eve, 2005 on South Beach, Miami. Samantha recalls: “I was over the moon, but it was no surprise!” Seven years after they first saw one another, the pair returned to one of the oldest spots in London; Smithfield’s Market - this time to get married. Celebrating all things English, the pair immersed themselves in ye olde London, using Smithfield’s Market as a source of inspiration for a thoroughly ‘Old English’ theme: complete with red roses, roast dinners and chimney sweeps!
The hen and stag parties: Samantha took 25 hens to a
famous Chinese karaoke restaurant in Dalston, East London, saying: “The less said about karaoke and Dalston the better!” Craig had two events: a simple pub night in Kent, he describes purely as “very messy!” and another in London’s South Kensington. Starting at the Admiral Codrington Pub, the stags moved on to exclusive haunt, The Collection, for dinner and dancing ending at Mamalagi on Chelsea’s hot and happening Kings Road where they finished a three litre bottle of Belvedere Vodka!
The setting: Back in Smithfield’s Market where they first met,
Craig and Samantha’s big day took place in the same spot that the great British romantic comedy, Four Weddings and a Funeral, was filmed. They say the famous Church had captured their hearts on previous visits. “We were in awe of the age, beauty and stature of the place. It really is something special.” With their traditional ‘Old English’ theme, the Church’s neighbouring pub, The Butcher’s Hook and Cleaver, made a classic choice for their Smithfield’s reception. They explained: “It’s a beautifully kept ornate pub on two floors with lots of little nooks and
REaL WEddingS REaL WEddingS
crannies for people to hide away or dance the night away!” Ordinarily closed at weekends, the staff opened its doors especially for the couple - complete with a red carpet entrance to match their English roses!
The Groom: Craig Reeves, 35, Fund Manager The Bride: Samantha Jones, 32, Personal Assistant Date of Wedding: November 3rd 2007 Ceremony Venue: St Bartholomew the Great Church, Smithfield Market Reception Venue: The Butcher’s Hook and Cleaver, Smithfield Market
It’s all in the details: With their ‘Old English’ theme, this
couple covered every detail, with food, flowers, cars and entertainment fit for the grandest pearly King. Samantha arrived with her father in a vintage 1920’s Rolls-Royce and the married couple left amidst a shower of rose petals, walking hand in hand as man and wife beneath an arch created by chimney sweeps! The authentic London pub chosen for their reception looked lavish and decadent, strewn with red roses in gold pots. Guests enjoyed a traditional English roast with parsnips, carrots and rosemary potatoes and more traditional nibbles came later with hot canapés, including mini chicken and mushroom pies, and fish and chips in a cone!
The outfits: Samantha exuded timeless glamour in her vintage
style wedding dress. Marrying in chilly November, she covered up with a long lace coat, over a satin dress, fitted with pearls and diamonds
across the bodice. Finishing with a pearl necklace and pearl earrings, the traditional white ensemble looked striking against her bouquet of red roses. The only choice for a very English affair. Craig was the epitome of English tradition in a full grey morning suit, pinstripe trousers and brown cravat; finished with a single red rose in the lapel.
The honeymoon: Leaving traditional England far behind, the
couple spent ten days in Phuket, Thailand and Singapore. They said: “ We would recommend Singapore but found Thailand to be full of middle aged European men with one thing on their minds!” But, for a couple who only had eyes for each other from that first chance meeting in Smithfield’s, we’re sure it would take more than that to dampen their rosy red glow.
The wedding party: Samantha had seven bridesmaids from her
family and friends including her two sisters, Melanie and Emma Jones. The bridesmaids wore white and carried matching red roses, with the elder bridesmaids looking stunning in strapless gowns and the children fulfilling every little girl’s dream in netted white skirts with touches of traditional blue. Craig’s groomsmen included best man and friend, Graham Sansom and three ushers: his father, Samantha’s father and her uncle, Victor.
The music: The couple took to the floor for their first dance to
‘How Deep Is Your Love,’ by the Bee Gees. During the meal a piano player kept guests entertained until a postdinner disco had everyone up on the dance floor.
On reflection: For Craig, the best part of the day came in the
form of his first drink! On a serious note, Samantha says the Church and saying her vows were the highlight: “That’s what the whole day is about; to declare your love and commitment to each other for now and forever in front of your loved ones and in the presence of God.” With a sigh of relief, the couple described the day as ‘wonderful’ and problem free! “We can both say that we both really enjoyed our day.” A fact that Samantha attributes partly to forward planning and help from relatives. With that in mind, the couple’s top tip is this: “Relax and enjoy your special day! If you’re relaxed, your guests will be relaxed and it makes it all the more enjoyable for everyone all round.”
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deCadent déCoR The authentic interior of Smithfield’s pub, the Butchers Hook and Cleaver, was offset beautifully with indulgent reds and golds, creating a decadent setting to enjoy the couple’s Old English reception. CUpCake CasCade The couple opted for tiers of mouth-watering milk and white chocolate cupcakes, adorned with chocolate hearts and sweet strawberries to compliment their ravishing red colour theme!
london Rose Samantha took inspiration from traditional England, with a white wedding dress, embellished with diamonds and pearls, under a long lace coat and bulging bouquet of striking red roses. Perfect for a winter wedding. UsefUl ContaCts: Bride’s dress & groom’s suit Pronuptia, Hatton Garden Tel: 020 7419 9014 Bride’s accessories Candy Anthony Ltd Tel: 020 7803 0898 Bridesmaids’ dresses British Home Stores, Oxford Street Tel: 020 7629 2011 www.bhs.co.uk Flowers Jools Flowers Tel: 020 7250 1166 www.joolsflowers.co.uk Cars Elegant Wedding Cars Tel: 020 8530 6401 Photography Richard Sena Photography Tel: 020 8944 0211 www.richardsena.co.uk DJ/Band Dynamic Disco Dave Tel: 07950 303 990 Band - Mannix Tel: 07956 285 691
BUdding BRidesmaids Samantha’s two flower girls wore netted white dresses that every little girl will love! Baby blue petals sewn on the hem added a touch of tradition with ‘something blue.’
Wedding cake Heather Higgins Tel: 07754 442 274 www.sweetart.co.uk