We caught up with Fross bride Jenni to find out all about her Christmas wedding in Sussex, wearing a stunning lace Justin Alexander bridal gown!
How did your partner propose?
He took me on a surprise trip to London, where he’d planned a walk taking us through our favourite places over the years, starting at Tower Bridge. We ended up on Albert Bridge in Battersea at sunset where he got down on one knee and popped the question with a perfect ring he’d picked out a few weeks earlier.
What’s the best piece of advice you received in the run up to the big day?
Enjoy every moment – even the stressful bits! – as it goes by so quickly
How did you go about finding the perfect wedding dress?
I bought several wedding magazines to get an idea of what I liked and then booked appointments in a few wedding shops where I tried on as many different styles as I could. Fross was the best shop I found, with their expertise and patience making the experience a lot more fun than I thought it would be. They also didn’t mind me FaceTiming my sister so she could be part of it all, which was fantastic.
How many dresses did you try on before finding The One?
About 15 – 20! I eventually chose a lace gown by Justin Alexander.
What made you fall in love with the dress you chose?
I loved the simplicity of the style (a sweetheart strapless a line gown, with a fitted bodice and lace overlay) and how I felt in it. It worked perfectly with the traditional church wedding with a barn reception we had planned.
What bridal accessories did you choose?
I decided to opt for a more classic style for the church wedding, with a simple satin belt and my mum’s pearls to complement the dress. A satin edge veil and a fluffy bolero completed my winter wedding look. For the reception I added a sparkly Freya rose belt and necklace and matching bracelet my husband had previously bought me. I also wore lacy Freya rose stilettos that I loved and wore for most of the day, sacrificing comfort for style!
Tell us about your wedding day.
I stayed at my parents house the day before, as it wedding was taking place in the local village church. My 2 bridesmaids (sister and childhood friend) stayed too, as did my grandmother and brother, so it was a nice full house. Our wonderful hair and makeup artist came over early in the morning to get us ready, and the beautiful flowers were brought over late morning. James, our photographer took shots of us getting ready before heading over to the church to get some of the groom and his best men. My family kept me calm throughout the morning and lovely Danni made me look presentable after suffering from a horrible cold and lack of sleep for a few days!
The ceremony took place at 1pm, and the reception was at Pangdean Barns, who had beautifully decorated their barn for Christmas. We had canapés inside as unfortunately the weather wasn’t playing ball (understandably for December) and had a wonderful time seeing all our friends and family. After the wedding breakfast we’d booked a caricaturist who drew funny pictures of those requesting a portrait. All in all it was a perfect day and I’d love to do it again.
What was your favourite moment from your big day?
There are too many to choose from! The best moment was undoubtedly exchanging vows, but being walked up the aisle by my dad was lovely, as was walking into the reception as a married couple. The speeches were a great mix of touching and hilarious and were up there as the best moments of the day!
What theme did you pick for the wedding?
We got married on December 1st so decided to go go for a Christmassy theme. The reception had Christmas decorations up and our table names were the best parts of a Christmas dinner!
What advice would you give to other brides-to-be?
Stay calm, set a budget and try to stick to it. The most important part is you are getting married and your guests are there to celebrate that. Anything else is just an added extra. Try to enjoy the planning stage, as you probably won’t get to organise such a large event exactly how you’d like it again! Also, set boundaries when you ask for advice as people will love to give it, so just make sure you go ahead with what you want to rather than what you’ve been told to.
Where did you go on your honeymoon?
We went on a mini-moon the day after to a little cottage in Norfolk, where we could recover from the past few weeks of stress. We then planned a longer honeymoon around Morocco 6 months later, where I’m currently writing this from.
Who were your suppliers for your big day?
Cake – a friend of my mum’s made the official wedding cake. We also bought a Colin and Connie the caterpillar cakes from Marks & Spencer as an alternative for those guests who didn’t like fruitcake. They served 40 people each and were a huge hit!
Flowers – Nichola Massingdale, Floral Art
Photographer – James from This Life photography
Venue – reception held at Pangdean Barns, near Brighton
Hair & Make Up – Danni from Makeover Box