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Real Wedding | Carly + Tom

Tell us a little about yourselves!

East London based with 2 cats, Tom and I have been together for 10 years, we share such an affinity with our aesthetics and taste we were able to curate the most perfect day that was essentially ‘us’ in an event. Tom is a biotech entrepreneur and Carly is Head of Creative for a Danish Textile Brand, curating and directing client experience and events.

Tom proposed in St Paul de Vence on holiday in 2019 with a beautiful custom designed ring, we went back to celebrate our honeymoon in the same spot.

Why did you decide to get married where you did?

We wanted to have wonderful sunny weather, delicious food, great wine and for guests to be fully immersed in the experience. Lisbon has always been such a special place for us, we holidayed there as one of our first trips away together and fell in love with the city, returning pretty much every year since.

When it came to picking a location to get married we thought, if we could celebrate anywhere, where would be the most perfect place for us…there was no question, Lisbon it was. Once we had decided on Ponto Final as the venue, everything just fell into place, and we designed the entire event from there. Yellow quickly became the colour palette, a key colour running through the city, and the colour of the venue décor, we adopted it in all its rich sunshine shades and curated the wedding around this.

How many guests did you have?

30 of our closest friends and family. Planning the wedding for 30 ended up being such an amazing decision as it was a small enough group that we could create a very customised, intimate day, focused on spending time and budget on the key people we love.

Tell us about your outfits.

Something in me wishes I’d traipsed around trying on a million dresses while my onlookers sipped champagne however I had such a clear vision and knew exactly what I wanted. I designed my dress and presented this to the lovely Bethany at What Mother Made – a dressmaker based locally, which allowed me to pop in at Bethany’s every beck and call to fit a sleeve or look over samples. I was extremely particular when it came to the fabric, I guess working in textiles allows you to be so! We decided to use a silk reverse side out to create a really matte a finish that wouldn’t shine too much in the sunlight. Bethany was amazing at tolerating my desires to make the sleeves larger and larger every time I tried the dress on! I also ordered an extra metre of the fabric and made myself a supersized bow to sit in my hair on the day. The shoes were probably the item I was most unsure about as I just had no idea what I wanted, however they ended up being the first thing I bought! The earrings by Juliette Laloe were the icing on the cake, as soon as I saw them I knew they were the ones, Juliette was great and made a pair to order in a shinier gold to sit well with the rest of all my jewellery. It felt great to have all these wonderful designers and creators helping my vision come to light. The heels were chunky and so sculptural, the sleeves biggest and billowy and the earrings were again so statement and oversized. Everything was the bigger the better, now all I needed was a red lip. Tom also had very clear vision as to what he wanted, a classic tropical wool suit, designed by Scott Fraser Collection. The loafers were Bass Weejun and the tie vintage, again with that hint of sunny yellow coming through.

What was the most important aspect for you, in terms of planning your wedding?

Planning a wedding overseas was always going to be a challenge, we visited only once between making the decision and actually hosting the wedding – thanks to the pandemic! We therefore had to heavily rely on our suppliers and adopt a certain level of nonchalance to reflect the Lisbon sense of urgency (or lack of!)

I think overall we were keen for the day to reflect us, as a couple, and our love for hosting, entertaining and of course each other. We just wanted it to be an amazing day, for us and for all our guests!

Were there any elements that were important for you to incorporate?

The styling was key, it was important for me that everything looked great and was well curated. Tom and I had such a clear vision from the outset, we were very keen that this translated on the day. We had not opted for a traditional venue, or even a venue that had ever hosted a wedding! We hired unconventional transport for a bride in a wedding dress and we didn’t even hire a ceremony spot! But even though there were so many separate elements, we wanted everything to seamlessly work together and have a sense of Carly and Tom identity to it. We wanted it to feel real, to be unapologetically us.

There were so many small touches and details we designed into the day, and being so detail oriented myself, I was keen for the photographer to capture all these small additions which is why I was so delighted when I found Agata at Couplet who really adopted my eye on the wedding day! One of my favourite things was that we gave the guests a colour palette dress code, we didn’t have bridesmaids or groomsman, however as we only had 30 guests everyone was inherently part of the bridal party! And when everyone is dressed in our sunshine palette the photos and imagery all just work so beautifully, all females in our party had bouquets which also ensured that in every image and every sightline there were flowers decorating every step of the day.

Any tips for couples getting married?

Keep it true to you as a couple. Everything we did and every decision we made purely expressed us. We wanted the day to be just so us. And it was.

Are there any vendors that you would like to tell us a little more about?

Having planned the wedding ourselves meant we had such close relationships with our suppliers and vendors, we felt that everyone really put their hearts into the day and gave us such great support in bringing our vision to life.

Agata from Couplet, our photographer was everything, she was my sounding board in so much of the planning process, she was amazing support on the day and beforehand. It felt fantastic to have someone truly understand our aesthetic and capture that on the day. Her perspective and composition, the way she captures light and colour is truly beautiful. The photography is perfection and I find myself looking back over the album almost weekly!

Nathan at Kokuga Flower Studio was again a triumph of a find, not only an amazing florist creating beautiful sculptural contemporary pieces, but being based locally in Lisbon, he was our eyes and ears on the ground, our Portuguese translator and our on the day stylist. It felt so wonderful to have such amazing people so invested in making our day so special.

Photographer : Couplet | Ceremony Location : Lisbon, Miradouro de Santa Luzia | Reception Location : Lisbon, Restaurant Ponto Final @pontofinalrest | Celebrant : Gerry Stewart, Godfather of Tom | Entertainment : Alex Hitchcock @abhitchcock | Styling : by the couple | Champagne Reception Bar : Bar Terraço de Santa Luzia @barterracosantaluzia | Flora : Kokuga Flower Studio @kokuga_ | Hair + Makeup : Bride did her own | Transport : Tuk Away @tukawaylisbon + Seaeo Tours @seaeotours | Carly's Dress: Self designed, made by local dressmaker at What Mother Made @whatmothermade | Tom's Suit: Scott Fraser Collection @scottfrasercollection | Tie: Vintage | Engagement Ring :Designed by Tom and made in Antwerp | Wedding Rings : Custom ECOne @econe_jewellery | Carly's Shoes: Numero Ventuno @numeroventuno | Tom's Shoes : Bass Weejun @ghbass_eu| Earrings: Juliette Laloe @juliette_laloe | Hair Bow : Designed and made by Carly | Handbag: Gifted from the Groom | Sunglasses: Le Specs

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