Cool, Modern, Gothic Themed Wedding with Feminist Touches

Emma Ledwith Photography

January 5, 2021

Lucy and Ross were inspired by their weird and wonderful shared interests and lives together for their dark and romantic October 2019 wedding. The bride told us; ”I collect medical samples, so we made our dessert table a cabinet of curiosities. We put quotes from our favourite books and TV shows on the invites and into the the ceremony. Our tables names were out favourite art galleries and museums in London, and our guests were transported between venues on black London buses complete with cheesy ghost tour actors.”

“I know most people say it, but the theme was quintessentially, ‘us’. We had a lot of fun with putting our own stamp on things. At one point, Ross was looking at tie colour inspiration in the strangest places: he found a picture of a headless Medusa by Caravaggio and loved the combination of colours, and broke down its palette for tie colours, but in the end, he went with… black.”

They didn’t always plan on having a DIY wedding, but they soon found that their wants were quite specific, and their colour scheme not exactly traditional, so they still ended up making quite a bit. As artists, they’d always planned to draw and design their own stationery, and as Lucy studied jewellery design, she was able to make their wedding rings and gold pins for the buttonholes. They covered The Crypt in loads of black candles and painted candlesticks black. They made a personalised game of Guess Who, photoshopping guests faces onto cards to fit into an existing copy of the game.

Married at Asylum in Peckham with a reception at The Crypt at Bleeding Heart Yard, an incredible medieval venue where Henry VIII had his wedding party to Catherine of Aragon, which set a pretty interesting precedent for a wedding! They tried to use exclusively women suppliers; from the DJ to the speaker hire company to the chocolate human hearts. “In the end, it wasn’t quite possible in every single case, but we made a conscious choice to do this whenever we could, even ensuring the gender split for the speeches was 50/50.”

They combined their humanist ceremony with the signing of the registrar at the same time too. Ross’s sister did a reading of Annabelle Lee by Edgar Allen Poe, Ross’s first Valentine’s gift to Lucy. They exchanged personalised vows; “Ross’s were beautiful and heartfelt… mine were like a daft homage to Star Wars”, before their celebrant took over with a ceremony incorporating a ring warming, a hand fasting and the sharing of an Amaretto cocktail; an inadvertent love potion!

The couple have some interesting stories from their day; namely, the bride getting summoned for jury service for the week of the wedding and having to write a panicked plea to the courts to defer, and the heavily pregnant bridesmaid’s waters breaking on the dancefloor! “I read some ridiculous wedding blogs where brides create bridal contracts for their bridesmaids: awful, offensive stuff around them not changing their hair, putting on weight or getting pregnant (as if your wedding is somehow more important than someone growing their family). But, conversely, I would 100% recommend getting a pregnant bridesmaid: they know all the calming breathing exercises (very useful)! And, if they happen to give birth on your wedding day, it means you’re never, ever going to forget the baby’s birthday.”

“Planning our wedding together so it really reflected both of us was our absolute favourite thing. We have some incredibly talented friends and we brought them into the wedding.. It was an amazing privilege to be able to get things created or written for us. Our day was built together with the people we love. The worst thing was the unnecessary stress we put on ourselves and all the little things we worried about. It seems such a cliché to say don’t worry about that stuff but in reality, you absolutely do. I spent loads of time on wedding blogs making comparisons and feeling ours fell short. I look back now, and it seems so incredibly ridiculous, but it’s so easy to get swept away – I learnt a lot about myself through wedding planning!”