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The look of love: thoroughly modern city chic

A cool city celebration for a fashion-savvy couple

Sam & Adam: The Love Story

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For accessories designer Sam, a visit to the vintage jewellery stores on Ponte Vecchio in Florence was a must for her 30th birthday trip, but she never guessed it would turn into a full-on proposal. “We stood looking at all the beautiful antique jewellery, and Adam pointed out a stunning art deco diamond ring,” Sam says. “It was then that he asked me to marry him!” That deco gem became her engagement ring, and the design-savvy pair got to work dreaming up plans for their London celebration.

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Photography by Marianne Taylor, mariannetaylorphotography.co.uk

Sam & Adam: You’re Invited!

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Along with a friend, Sam designed vintage-feel stationery that incorporated a star motif, a reference to a restored Masonic temple that was part of their venue. “Inside the star is the number 3 – both the date of our wedding and the time of our ceremony,” Sam says. “Three has always been a bit of a lucky number for us, so we wanted it to figure prominently.”

Sam & Adam: The Place to Be

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The couple chose glam London hotel Andaz Liverpool Street for their civil ceremony, wedding breakfast and evening do. “We knew that we didn’t want a traditional wedding in a traditional setting, and the Andaz had the perfect mix of vintage and modern – plus enough unique spaces that each part of the day could have a very different mood,” Sam explains.

Sam & Adam: Tying the Knot

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Fifty guests joined Sam and Adam for their civil ceremony at the Andaz. “We liked the traditional vows but we personalised it with readings that were meaningful to us,” says Sam. “We chose a passage from Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms and Notes on a Marriage by Charles Darwin.”

Sam & Adam: Reception Perfection

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For the wedding breakfast, guests were seated at long tables in The Studio. Sam and Adam loved the room for its sleek bistro feel.

Sam & Adam: On the Menu

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“We had so many compliments on the food!” says Sam of the meal catered by the Andaz. Creative dishes included salad of Parma ham, fresh figs and caramelised pecans and lamb shank with lemon couscous, aubergine and chickpea salsa.

Sam & Adam: Finding Their Style

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Sam and Adam didn’t adhere to a strict theme or colour palette (“we both work as designers, so that would be too much like our everyday jobs!”) and instead drew on assorted influences and interests, from classic London imagery to Japanese cherry blossoms, to create a unique look for their day.

Sam & Adam: Flower Power

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“The flowers were one of my favourite elements of the day,” says Sam of the romantic displays put together by Clare at London florist Scarlet & Violet.

Sam & Adam: Shades of Spring

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The family-style tables were decorated with small, mismatched glass bottles filled with blousy roses, peonies, daisies and anemones in muted ice-cream shades of blush pink, cream, white and silvery grey. “The little bunches made great gifts to give away to guests at the Sunday brunch following the wedding,” Sam adds.

Sam & Adam: Let Them Eat Cake

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The sweet three-tiered creation by Maki’s Cakes used a cherry blossom motif. Flavours included vanilla, chocolate and carrot cake.

Sam & Adam: All About the Dress

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“As soon as I tried on my Marchesa gown, I knew it was the one,” Sam recalls of her shopping trip to iconic NYC department store Bergdorf Goodman. “It was a real red-carpet gown.” A beaded capelet by Cassin played to the Old Hollywood glamour of the draped silk-chiffon stunner, while flowers were kept natural and relaxed. “Sam carried a gathered, unstructured and textural bouquet of seasonal flowers including blush anemones, lilac, little silver, roses, dill, eucalyptus and sweet peas to contrast the elegance of her gown,” explains florist Clare of Scarlet & Violet.

Sam & Adam: If the Shoe Fits …

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Graphic Nicholas Kirkwood lace-up heels, purchased at Dover Street Market, gave the look a contemporary twist.

Sam & Adam: Dressed to Impress

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A menswear designer by day, Adam held his own in the style stakes in a grey pinstriped suit from Dunhill, grey leather shoes from B Store London and a blue chambray tie by The Hill-Side. “The whole day was really, truly perfect, and so much fun,” Sam says. “The dancing went on until midnight, and we couldn’t let the DJs leave without a few encores. We finished the party with a very enthusiastic rendition of Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen, complete with plenty of air guitar and floor slides!”