Carmen Weddings » the little blog home of : carmen weddings

I’m beyond thrilled to see the wedding of Yaxin + David published in the current issue of You & Your Wedding.

Yaxin + David married at the stunning Castle Howard in Yorkshire and it was a wedding which completely took my breath away. For some, this may come across a little like I’m ‘high-fiving’ myself on my own work but with all the experience in planning, knowing every little tiny detail before the very day and when I’ve already got the schedule down to perfection, not to mention already knowing it off the top of my head… but still, when the day and details comes together it still makes my heart flutter. Every time.

A huge thank you to the wonderful team at You & Your Wedding for the feature and more importantly to the bride + groom for their sweet words and of course their wedding team. I hope you enjoy the feature xoxo

you & your wedding july august 2015

IMG_6584 800px

Send Usa message Share onfacebook Tweetto twitter Pin topinterest EmailSubscribe

I’ve been spending a little time going through organising my blog layout as things changed when I moved to my new website… and then recently came to realise that one of my favourite inspiration shoots was never blogged on here!

Oh how could I forget this? A shoot planned from six thousand miles away AND we had it grace the very wonderful pages of Style Me Pretty.

I thoroughly enjoyed planning this alongside Hong Kong blogger, Bridelicious and putting together a gorgeous shoot with an amazing team in both Hong Kong and the UK.

Chinoiserie Chic 1

Our idea was to show how weddings in this vibrant city can be small and personalised, with an emphasis on DIY details and decorative items that can be easily found in Hong Kong; Bridelicious had birdcages and bamboo steamers painted, napkin rings were made using Chinese motifs and the bride and groom’s chair decoration were made using jade beads. We used a mixture of soft, elegant flowers and bright coral flowers gorgeously put together by Divine Floreal and paired with pops of teal coloured tea tins and bamboo steamers to create a modern and playful setting. Carnations are rarely used in Hong Kong weddings and we wanted to show how versatile and pretty this type of flower could be.

Most of the weddings in Hong Kong are held in hotel ballrooms which can sometimes be stifling, not only for the bride and groom but also the guests. From the outset, our aim was to team up with a venue that is both intimate and beautiful; to create a feeling of being a million miles away from the bustling city. One Thirty One in Sai Kung was the perfect location for our shoot, with the outdoor space as well as the British inspired wooden panelled interior, which added a sophisticated touch. We were also mindful that the shoot was a reflection of Hong Kong talent and therefore, chose mainly Hong Kong based vendors to collaborate with.

We chose this particular dress by Ranee K as she creatively transforms the Cheongsam (the Chinese dress that’s traditionally long with short sleeves) into a gown that can be worn by modern brides who usually seek for more Western-styled wedding dresses. As much as we could, we made sure to tie in the different elements from different vendors together, be it the water coloured invitation suite designed by Kalo Make Art with the dessert table that was deliciously created by Patisseries A Legna.

We were both in awe of Jada Poon’s photography, and her perfection in creating fine art images was exactly what we had in mind. She beautifully captured the details and the fabulous views at this stunning venue, bringing out the best in all the vendors.
Chinoiserie Chic 2Chinoiserie Chic 3Chinoiserie Chic 6Chinoiserie Chic 7Chinoiserie Chic 11Chinoiserie Chic 14Chinoiserie Chic 16Chinoiserie Chic 17Chinoiserie Chic 18Chinoiserie Chic 20Chinoiserie Chic 25Chinoiserie Chic 26Chinoiserie Chic 27Chinoiserie Chic 31Chinoiserie Chic 32Chinoiserie Chic 33Chinoiserie Chic 34Chinoiserie Chic 35Chinoiserie Chic 38Chinoiserie Chic 40Chinoiserie Chic 42Chinoiserie Chic 43Chinoiserie Chic 44Chinoiserie Chic 46Chinoiserie Chic 47Chinoiserie Chic 48Chinoiserie Chic 49Chinoiserie Chic 50Chinoiserie Chic 54Chinoiserie Chic 56Chinoiserie Chic 62Chinoiserie Chic 64Chinoiserie Chic 67Chinoiserie Chic 69


Planning + Design – Carmen Weddings | Design + Styling – Bridelicious | Photography – Jada Poon Photography | Floral Design – Divine Floreal | Wedding Dress – Ranee K | Stationery – Kalo Make Art | Venue – One Thirty One | Bridal Accessories –  Littledate | Bridal Shoes – DYOS| Cake + Desserts – Patisseries A Legna | Chair Rentals – Ginger | Film – Allora Visuals | Hair + Makeup –  She Make Up Studio

Send Usa message Share onfacebook Tweetto twitter Pin topinterest EmailSubscribe
  • April 22, 2015 - 10:51 am

    Katherine - Lovely shoot! I really like the floral arrangements and the flower on that wedding cake. Beautiful and elegant theme!

  • April 26, 2015 - 4:33 pm

    Carmen - Thank you Katherine!


Oh my heart – as soon as I set eyes on Yaxin + David’s wedding photos, it was just bursting with love, admiration and a huge amount of pride.

Love for every capture of the Bride + Groom. Of the sweet details. Of every loving moment. Of every emotion.

Admiration for the incredible wedding team.

Pride for what we’ve brought to life for this very lovely couple.


Eighteen months ago I was elated when Yaxin + David asked me to be their wedding planner. I knew from our first Skype call that we would be a perfect match. I instantly felt I understood their vision and I wanted nothing other than to create a day which was personal and beautiful for them. A day they would remember forever.

In May 2013 we had venue visits from Berkshire to Yorkshire and it wasn’t until they had arrived back to The USA, where they currently live, did they decide that Yorkshire will be the very place where they would  get married. The city of York was where Yaxin + David first met while studying at University and we knew that although we had visited many spectacular venues during their week visit to the UK, Castle Howard was the only venue for them.

A year of planning their Chinoiserie Elegance style day, with an amazing team on board…

this is Yaxin + David’s wedding day.


It’s been such a great pleasure working with Yaxin + David – I would like to thank them both, their families and the team for such a wonderful journey – from that very first time we visited the beautiful venues all over the UK, right to the very day we witnessed them become husband and wife.


. . . . .

Wedding Planner – Carmen Weddings | Photography – Sarah Gawler | Ceremony + Reception Venue -Castle Howard  | Hair – Emily Hawkes Bridal | Makeup – Bride’s own | Bride’s Dress – Jenny Packham | Bride’s Shoes + Accessories – BHLDN | Groom’s Suit + Tie –Acustom Apparel  | Groom’s Shirt + Cufflinks – Thomas Pink | Groom’s Shoes – Oliver Sweeney  | Bridesmaids Dresses – Donna Morgan via Nordstrom  | Groomsmen Suits – Suitsupply |  Groomsmen’s Ties –Burberry  | Stationery –Artcadia & Noble Fine Arts | Flowers – Michele Gledhill Flowers & Styling | Cake – Quite Contrary Cakes  | Music – Strelitzia String Quartet Band – The Scoundrels via Alive Network |  Videographer –Wedding Film Studio

Send Usa message Share onfacebook Tweetto twitter Pin topinterest EmailSubscribe
  • October 29, 2014 - 1:17 pm

    betta - What a stunning wedding! And, my o my, Sarah’s pictures are divine! Absolutely gorgeous Carmen! xx

  • October 31, 2014 - 10:04 am

    Carms - Thank you so much Betta! xoxo

  • November 21, 2014 - 12:56 pm

    LucyL - Oh my word, what an amazing wedding!! The pictures just took my breath away! I can’t stop staring at the beautiful bride and all the intricate details! Thanks for sharing Carmen.

    PS, I hope motherhood is bringing you many joys xx

  • November 25, 2014 - 8:12 pm

    Carms - Hi Lucy, Thank you so much for your kind words! It’s one wedding I’m so proud to have been a part of.
    Being a mami has completely changed my world – for the better of course! Thank you once again for your sweet blog comment Lucy xoxo

  • March 21, 2015 - 2:24 pm

    Earcandy G - Absolutely stunning wedding photos! The umbrella was such an intricate touch! Gorgeous location too.

Never have I ever been so besotted with anyone like I am with this girl. Yes, I can finally say, this is my daughter Alana-Bo – who arrived safely on 19th June. And my goodness, I love her so, so much! So much, my heart could burst.

Alana-Bo {Bo meaning ‘precious’ in Chinese} was born exactly four weeks before her due date and it was all a huge surprise when she made her appearance.

I attended my 36 week midwife appointment that very morning not knowing that just 8 hours later I would be holding my sweet little girl in my arms. Alana-Bo was born by emergency c-section as she was breech and unbeknown to me, I was actually having contractions and was dilating very quickly. I was laying on the bed strapped to the monitor while having a joke with Paul as we tried to guess what the monitor results were showing us – Paul Googled the bottom reading and he said ‘It shows you’re having contractions!’…

I just stared at him, laughed and said “I can’t be, I can’t feel a thing!’.

Two hours later, with a rumbling tummy as I wasn’t able to eat since I was admitted, the doctor appeared and sat on the edge of the bed and said to us “You are going to meet your baby tonight – we need to send you straight down to theatre for a cesarean”

Woah… it was happening fast.

We both remained very calm but my first thought was I don’t even have a hospital bag packed for baby and we really need to be telling our parents that they will be meeting their grandchild very soon!

I was excited, nervous and feeling emotional. But above all, I was excited and could not believe that I will finally be meeting our little one. A month early.

At that point we still didn’t have a clue whether we were having a boy or girl but I was convinced I was carrying a boy.

Forty five minutes after since seeing the doctor… our little one entered the world! Yes, it really was that quick!

All I could see was a mop of jet black hair as they were checking this little person over to the right of me. I was holding my breath as the noise in the theatre meant I couldn’t quite hear our little one moaning and groaning – eventually for what felt like forever, I heard this loud cry from across the room. I could then breathe again!

Daddy cut the cord, took one look at this little person we had created and then came back over to me, kissed my forehead and told me excitedly “We have a girl!” It was then when I felt over-whelmed and emotional. Finally, she’s here. Finally I get to hold her in my arms.

This is the start of a new chapter in my life and one I’m loving every moment of.

Alana-Bo is truly precious and I’m sure every parent would agree, she really is my everything.

Carms xoxo

{our first cuddle – just minutes after Alana-Bo entered the world!}

Send Usa message Share onfacebook Tweetto twitter Pin topinterest EmailSubscribe
  • July 1, 2014 - 3:14 pm

    LucyL - MANY congratulations on your beautiful daughter Carmen! I am sure she will bring you even more joy with each day xx

  • July 8, 2014 - 8:45 am

    Carms - Thank you so much LucyL! xoxo

  • August 5, 2014 - 11:42 pm

    Lindsay - Congratulations! She is adorable!

  • September 10, 2014 - 6:59 pm

    Matt - She’s beautiful! Congratulations!!

  • September 12, 2014 - 3:52 pm

    Carms - Thank you Matt!

Tracey + Hardip’s wedding will brighten up your day in so many ways.

This is the gorgeous wedding of a couple who were an absolute joy to work with and I’m grateful to them for having me. Anyone who knows me and who has followed my journey since the start of Carmen Weddings will know I have a huge love for fusion weddings – the colours, the traditions and that added uniqueness of who they are as individuals and as a couple. This sums up Tracey and Hardip’s very special celebration.

On their wedding morning I was greeted by a calm bride, her bridesmaids and three amazing gowns – and Elie Saab was Tracey’s chosen designer for her main white gown. Simply stunning. But they were all beautiful and I couldn’t wait to see Tracey make her entrance in each and every one of them. But first, the bride was beautifully made up by the lovely Mariam Jensen and hair with Jenny of Yuko London.

That morning the weather was a little unpredictable – sunny, then drizzly, sunny, then cloudy… and all I could think about was ensuring Tracey and Hardip were going to have their beautiful outdoor ceremony in the gardens they both so hoped for. But in the meantime, the fantastic team at Euphoric Flowers were creating some incredible arrangements for the bride and groom and adding some gorgeous touches for the ceremony.

The day flowed smoothly with beautiful traditions such as the Chinese Tea Ceremony and the Indian Sagan. In The Orangery the most amazing cake and dessert table by Rachelle’s created a wow factor, the fab team at Simon Clarke Films were capturing all those precious moments, emotions and details… and one of the best moments for everyone has to be when the grooms ultimate favourite band made their surprise appearance for their guests to kick start the evening – The Brand New Heavies!

You can see  how this very pretty day flowed by these stunning captures from a very wonderful and talented photographer – Marianne Taylor

Marianne Taylor PhotographyElie Saab Wedding Dress - Marianne Taylor PhotographyChinese Bridal Make Up - Marianne Taylor PhotographyMarianne Taylor PhotographyMarianne Taylor PhotographyNorthbrook Park Wedding - Marianne Taylor PhotographyChinese Door Games - Marianne Taylor PhootgraphyNorthbrook Park Wedding - Marianne Taylor PhotographyEuphoric Flowers - Marianne Taylor Photography

Northbrook Park Wedding - Marianne Taylor Photography

Chinese Tea Ceremony Wedding - Marianne Taylor PhotographyChinese Tea Ceremony Wedding - Marianne Taylor Photography

Chinese Tea Ceremony Wedding - Marianne Taylor Photography

Indian Sagan Wedding - Marianne Taylor Photography

Marianne Taylor Photography

Northbrook Park Wedding - Marianne Taylor PhotographyOmbre Wedding Dessert Table - Marianne Taylor PhotographyRachelle

The Brand New Heavies - Marianne Taylor Photography


. . . . .

Photography – Marianne Taylor Photography | Wedding Co-Ordination + Styling – Carmen Weddings

Venue – Northbrook Park | Dress – Elie Saab | Shoes – Jimmy Choo | Florist – Euphoric Flowers

Cake + Desset Table – Rachelle’s Bespoke Cakes | Make Up Artist – Mariam Jensen

Hair Stylist – Yuko London | Stationery – Coppia Creativa | Videographer – Simon Clarke Films

Catering – Sanctuary Catering |  Band – The Brand New Heavies

Send Usa message Share onfacebook Tweetto twitter Pin topinterest EmailSubscribe
  • February 4, 2014 - 8:09 am

    Nathalie - Buttercup Bus VW Photobooth - Wow – this wedding really caught my eye. The food issuing my tummy rumble. The traditions really add to this lovely, colourful wedding. What a gorgeous outdoor ceremony setting too!

  • February 8, 2014 - 9:55 pm

    Bernadette - Such beautiful styling Carmen, looked like a stunning wedding

  • February 10, 2014 - 12:07 pm

    Carms - It sure was a very pretty day! Thank you for your lovely comment :)

  • February 10, 2014 - 12:09 pm

    Carms - Thank you Bernadette – it was a very pretty day! x

  • June 17, 2014 - 4:54 am

    Tooba - wow it looks so beautiful . Simple,classic and stylish.

  • September 8, 2014 - 12:34 pm

    earcandy - The photography and the bride in groom in this are stunning! Fantastic work, thanks for great post as well.. The food is mouth watering :-)

  • October 10, 2014 - 6:19 am

    Phil - Hi,

    These pics make me so happy, Carmen. I’m so happy for you guys. Thank for sharing! May I feature one of your pics on a dating/social networking website I am building?

  • October 14, 2014 - 7:41 pm

    Carms - Hi Phil,

    This wedding is a clients wedding – please contact the photographer, Marianne Taylor Photography’ to ask for permission as they are copyrighted to her. Many Thanks

  • March 18, 2015 - 11:42 am

    Yogesh - Gorgeous wedding ceremony of the Chinese and Indian couple and congratulations to Tracey and Hardip. I am also a Indian guy and really glad to see here a Indian man who got married in such a wonderful way.