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Home Our Journal Bonita and Karel’s Timeless Winter Wonderland Wedding
KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details

Bonita and Karel’s Timeless Winter Wonderland Wedding

Couple hold hands in ivory Karen Willis Holmes wedding dress and fur shawl

Karel and Bonita met at Church in 2008 and didn’t think much of each other back then. In 2011, the two gradually became good friends and they started spending more time together and bonding over their love of music. The couple would often ‘jam’ together, with Bonita on the drums and Karel on the bass guitar. They are quite the duo!

“We moved to London for a short while from 2016-2018. As Aussies do when living in the UK, we would make the most of flying to different countries for the weekend. Starting our adult life overseas let us grow immensely as individuals and as a couple.”

In Early January 2020, the couple married in London, a place they hold close to their hearts.

 

On the proposal

Leading up to the proposal, the weekend after Bonita and Karel’s 6 year anniversary – Karel had planned a surprise trip to Luxembourg.

“I had no idea the country existed. We were hiking in the mountains with no-one about and decided to stop at a beautiful ruined fortress to admire the view. Crafty as he is, he pulled out his phone and began to film us both with the view whilst addressing our parents ‘vlog-style’, all to keep me unsuspecting. He then handed me the camera, asked me to film the view, got down on one knee and proposed. I could barely hold the camera steady.

After coming down the mountain, we sent the video to our parents back in Australia to announce it. Needless to say, they were elated. Later, Karel explained that he chose Luxembourg because it was a place that barely anybody knew of and probably even fewer people typically proposed in, as opposed to say, the Eiffel Tower in Paris (which he even pondered on doing). This way, we wanted to keep the memories and our experience as sentimental and unique as possible.”

wedding rings-london wedding with Karen Willis Holmes bride

On the venue

Bonita and Karel married in London, UK, at St. Luke’s, Earl’s Court. “It was the parish Church where we used to live nearby and we adored the architecture.”

To the pair – London had given them the best part of our years; the experiences and people the couple met epitomised the two as individuals and as a couple.
“We were drawn to celebrate the completeness of our love (in the union of marriage) for one another in the city that we love with the people we could never live without.”

The gorgeous couple held their reception at The Pembroke.
“We’d regularly have dinner here, and the odd Sunday roast with friends.”

London wedding location-inside church with fairy lights
New couple hugging in front of vintage wedding car

All the styling details

Bonita and Karel chose to keep the styling of their wedding minimal yet ethereal.

“Since we loved the snow and we don’t get enough of it back in Australia, we were inspired to have a ‘winter wonderland’ themed wedding. We are very grateful to our decorator who did such a bespoke job.”

The couple were also drawn by having the wedding in London and only inviting the closest of friends and immediate family, with the guests totaling 25.

It also gave them the opportunity to get each guest a bespoke gift for the wedding – a personalised book and a bookmark!

Styling details of KWH bride Bonita's wedding cake
Styling details of KWH bride Bonita's wedding cake
Styling details of KWH bride Bonita's wedding cake
Bridal details- pearl headband and invite-karen willis holmes bride

The Dress

Bonita secured her timeless Lauren wedding dress from our Wild Hearts Collection at our Armadale boutique in Melbourne.

“I loved how simple and elegant it was on me. The material was incredibly comfortable to wear all day and all night.”

 

KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details
KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details
KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details
KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details

Accessorising

Bonita accessorised the Lauren gown perfectly for her ideal Winter Wedding by wearing a Fur Shawl, Pearl Headband, and a two-tier hoarse hair edged veil – all purchased from Etsy.

KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details..
Karen Willis Holmes bride in elegant minimal off the shoulder wedding dress-Lauren by Karen willis Holmes
Karen Willis Holmes bride in elegant minimal off the shoulder wedding dress-Lauren by Karen willis Holmes
Karen Willis Holmes bride in elegant minimal off the shoulder wedding dress-Lauren by Karen willis Holmes

Highlight of the day

“The after-party of the wedding, which was completely adhoc. The venue was flexible in allowing us to stay way overtime where we just got to spend time with the guests for hours. We were told by many that the day would go fast, so we were able to savor the special moments a little more.”

 

 

Groom and groomsmen hug in tuxedos at London wedding
KWH bride Bonita getting ready. Wearing the off-the-shoulder Lauren wedding dress; with an open back and button details..
Lauren wedding dress by Karen Willis Holmes in London church wedding

Gown hunting tips

“Just try on as many dresses as you can, because you never know what style you might like or end up liking. There were many that I was fixed on initially, but didn’t like once I had tried them on. Likewise, I didn’t expect to love the Lauren wedding dress at first, but everyone agreed that it completely screamed ‘me’ as soon as I put it on.”

Reception wedding styling in London event space-dried floral display
Reception wedding styling in London event space-dried floral display
Reception wedding styling in London event space-dried floral display
New couple get into vintage wedding car in Karen Willis Holmes wedding dress and cathedral veil in London

What does love mean to you?

“Love is an unconditional commitment to an imperfect person. To love somebody isn’t just a strong feeling, it’s a decision; a judgment and a promise.”

 

 

Streets of London at night - Karen Willis Holmes bride
Karen Willis Holmes bride in Lauren wedding dress and fur shawl-London wedding

Suppliers:

Venue – St Luke’s Earls Court and The Pembroke / Photographer – White Antler Projects /  Florist –  Evergreen Moments / First Dance – I was made for loving you – Torri Kelly and Ed Sheeran / Cake – Violet Cakes / Wedding Shoes – ASOS / Wedding Band – The Ozones (Music For London) / Veil, Headband and Shawl – Etsy / Wedding Car – Premier Carriage

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