The soft shades of this white themed wedding complemented the grand surroundings perfectly. Our WED2B Real Weddings feature reveals more…

Bride and groom stood on balcony in each others arms

Carla and Toluwani (Tolu) first met in 2013 at a basketball game that Tolu was playing in. “I was pretty standoffish at first," says Carla. "Although, I came round quickly once I heard his velvet deep voice. And realised how handsome he was! We got on really well but we were friends for quite a while, even though the chemistry was definitely there. Our first actual date was the summer of the following year and we had dinner at a riverside pub. It was very low key but also a big deal, and we were finally official! What we'd both been hoping for, underneath the strong friendship, was becoming real.”

Life’s ups and downs

“We sadly broke up in 2015… life has complexities sometimes doesn't it?” says Carla. "But the pandemic was a soul searching time for many people and we were no exception. It brought to a head what we were both secretly missing all this time. We reconnected in July 2020 and initially had some hard conversations, including figuring out what went wrong the first time round. Things moved quickly after that and we got engaged on 12th December 2020.” 

A lakeside proposal

“The proposal was beautifully romantic,” says Carla. "It was at the lake where we’d had so many great dates, walks and conversations that had rekindled our relationship. The pathway and decking was lit with fairy lights and candles. Tolu went down on one knee but, for the life of me, I can't remember a thing he said! We were so happy, relieved and grateful. After seven years and a journey with challenges, we had finally made it.”

Bride and groom reciting vows inside the church

Shopping for the dress

“I saw Aden on WED2B's website and loved its classic lines and regal finish,” says Carla.

"The affordable prices were also very attractive. Sadly, it was during the height of the pandemic and at my local WED2B they were struggling with stock availability. The staff were so kind and found my dress in the right size at the Bromley branch, instead. I lived in Berkshire and it was a long and stormy drive to the store, but the staff were very helpful and encouraging. The next lockdown was announced later that same day and the country then shut down for three months. So it turned out to be an opportunity that happened just in the nick of time. I was beyond relieved!”

Bride and groom in grounds of house holding hands and smiling

“The Aden dress was the perfect combination of classic luxury and clean lines,” says Carla. "The A-line silhouette was very flattering to my curvy shape and, although it’s simple, the Mikado fabric gives it an understated appeal and a beautiful dramatic effect. It was the perfect dress for my white themed wedding at Cliveden House.” (For similar styles try Gina, Elton and Helene)

A wow-factor venue

The wedding ceremony was on the 25th May 2021 at St Nicholas Church in Taplow, followed by a reception at Cliveden House. “Having the wedding at Cliveden House was always a dream of mine, even before my husband and I got back together,” says Carla. "The stunning gardens and opulent manor house are one of my favourite places. Tolu was blown away when he saw it. We had a small wedding, due to the restrictions, but it gave us and our guests a chance to feel really special in the stunning surroundings.”

Bride and groom stood in front of ornate gold door of wedding venue

The big day

“I got ready at my parents' home,” says Carla. “It was lovely waking up in my room, with my mother and sisters pottering around the house. There was also a great atmosphere of bubbling excitement." 

Bride and groom smiling leaving the church with guests throwing confetti

“We married during Covid, so our church blessing was very brief. We were also restricted with time on readings and singing,” says Carla. "During the ceremony one of our friends sang a worship song that's very dear to us, while one of the best men played piano. It was a special moment and it brought a few people to tears, including my husband.”

Canapés and cocktails

“Immediately after the ceremony, canapés and cocktails were served on the stunning terrace of Cliveden House,” says Carla. "Then we had a beautiful dinner in the French Dining Room. Most of the guests also made speeches and told stories and memories, giving us well wishes for the future. We didn't have a first dance, as dancing and entertainment weren't allowed. Still, enjoying every moment with our guest was priceless.”

Bride and groom stood with parents outside church

A white themed wedding

“The wedding theme was 'shades of white', which worked really well with such a small number of guests, who were all on board with wearing the colour scheme,” says Carla. "Visually it looked exactly as I had hoped. Clean lines, fresh and luxurious all at the same time. The simple colours also enhanced the grandeur of Cliveden House. The food was divine. We had confit duck salad, rump of lamb and apple tart tatin to finish. This was washed down with free-flowing, signature cocktails. We also had a small three-tier wedding cake, which included coffee, lemon, and banoffee flavours.”

3 tiered ivory wedding cake with ivory flowers

So many happy memories…

“For us the intimacy of the day with close family and friends was our most treasured memory,” says Carla. "Although we wished we could have had many more family members, friends and colleagues to share the day, it was still incredibly special. For us, our journey, having health and each other was a huge blessing. In every way we just had so much gratitude about it all.”

Bride and groom sat together at wedding breakfast smiling

My top tips…

“Focus on the things you really want for your day,” says Carla. "It goes by so quickly and it's easy to want to please everybody else. That’s normal and very noble, but make sure you prioritise what you and your partner envision for your special day.”

Carla’s Dream Team 

Photographer: Mark Joseph Anthony Photography

Venue and caterer: Cliveden House

Wedding dress: WED2B

Videographer: Alex Dunkley 

Cake: Celebration Cakes by Catherine Scott 

Flowers: Longacres Nursery Bagshot

If you would like your big day to be one of our real weddings like this white themed wedding please click here to share your story and photos with us and we’ll be in touch. Or click here for more details about WED2B’s bridal shops.