Please forgive this lengthy tome and allow me to tell you a story…
It’s a typical grey October morning in the English Surrey countryside and I’m setting up a cake at Botleys Mansion after nearly a year of ideas, planning and excitement.
Holly got in touch with me after falling in love with the original Marie Antoinette cake and we immediately hit it off. Her enthusiasm was infectious, her bold ideas something a cake designer can really get her teeth into. As I looked at our inspiration board of images, I summed up the feel as ‘if Marie Antoinette was a rock chick’, and that was it, the tone was set. Colourful, tall, embellished and oh so decadent.
Back to the big day and I’m filling the round table which is hidden behind doors for a grand unveiling later in the day, with cake and cupcakes and vintage china and flowers. Endless beautiful flowers. I’ve only just met Emma, the owner of Emma Lappin Flowers, and we’re styling the table together, adjusting, adding, moving, in harmony without conflict. We both agree that more is more in this case and relish the opportunity to let over the top decadence spill out of our creative minds. She brings along miniature pumpkins painted gold and asks ‘too much?’, which is a crazy question because it is this kind of detail that is making the table completely awesome!
I love every minute of the set up and when Ben the groom visits me flanked by his wingmen and wingwomen, his hug and offer of a drink from the bar (which isn’t open yet, it’s only 11am!), makes me think that I may just sneak in for the whole wedding. Steve Gerrard the too cool for school photographer arrives as Emma and I are finishing up and looks slightly bemused by our pleas for him to take amazing photos of it all as it’s ‘very close to our hearts’. Of course he will, he’s Steve Gerrard.
I reluctantly leave, Emma whizzing about creating floral magic everywhere, the party about to begin. The email from Holly in New York sharing their video a couple of weeks later makes me feel like I was part of one hell of a party, with a bride and groom deeply crazy about each other, and lots of hilarious moments of guests playing with the cupcakes and smooshing cake in their faces- moments I don’t usually get to see but now I feel a part of.
I send Ben and Holly the sketch of their cake framed when I know they’re back in the country and Holly’s response- ‘I have put it up in my dressing room so that I can look at it every day and be reminded of the day I felt like a princess, and had a cake fit for a queen!’- brings me happy tears. What a wedding. What a couple. They will always have a place in my heart.
Thankyou Steve for providing me with these fantastic shots.