Lauren & Mark
We are just a little bit in love with Lauren and Mark’s gorgeous intimate wedding abroad. With just 30 guests, their picturesque seaside venue was the perfect match for their small wedding in Greece, which was planned to perfection by the lovely Claire from Lefkas Weddings and captured by talented photographer Maxeen Kim.
Lauren and Mark chose to marry on one of the least touristic Ionian islands, Lefkas (Lefkada). Blessed with stunning golden beaches, interior mountains and a relaxed pace of life, it’s just a short hop from Kefalonia and connected to the mainland by a narrow causeway. Getting to the island is an easy 30 min drive from Preveza airport, making it a super accessible option for a destination wedding in Greece.
I found Lefkas Weddings via our photographer’s recommendation and I am so pleased we did! Claire is well organised, speaks the language and knows the area well. This means she can make recommendations and resolve any local problems that may occur. Claire not only helped with the day itself but also with the accommodation for ourselves and our guests, airport transfers as well as booking a taxi and restaurant reservation for our pre-wedding dinner during the trip!
Nearest Airport: Preveza
Number of Guests: 30
Why a Wedding Abroad…
We always knew we didn’t want to be the centre of attention in front of a huge number of guests and so the idea of a small intimate wedding appealed to the both of us.
Why a Wedding Abroad in Greece…
The main reason – we both love Greek food! Also, Lauren spent many family holidays in Greece and has lots of great memories of the different places she has visited with her family. We stumbled across Maxeen’s photography of Lefkada on Instagram and instantly fell in love with the scenery. The idea of getting married on a Greek island that wasn’t well known to ourselves or our family and friends felt like more of unique choice.
Vision for Our Small Wedding in Greece…
White and green with a hint of grey colour scheme, beautiful white flowers and green foliage. We wanted it to be a relaxed day with lots of laughter as well as an opportunity to be on holiday surrounded by our family and friends, at one time in one place.
Our ceremony and reception were at the same venue, Seaside Restaurant. We had a Civil Ceremony which was on the terrace by the sea and the reception in the restaurant.
It was explained to us by our planner Claire, that the Greek ceremony is very short and we could keep it as the basic ceremony or she could help us with ideas to make it more personal. We chose to add promises for the ring exchange and to ask one of our guests to do a reading. The ceremony started at 17.30.
WOW! We booked Seaside as our wedding venue two years in advance on the recommendation of our planner without visiting in advance. A few days before our wedding day we went for lunch and we’re all instantly blown away by the setting. When lunch arrived, we were even more impressed… beautifully presented and tasted delicious. Any doubts or worries we had about the day were gone and we were filled with excitement.
The day went so smoothly and we couldn’t have asked for more. Kostas is certainly the host with the most! This place will forever be special in our hearts and we will certainly be back.
On the Day…
In the morning we all got up and the girls and the boys chilled together at different villas on the estate.
11:00 Hair stylist arrived at the villa
15:00 Photographer started
17:00 Guests arrived at venue
17:45 Cocktail hour and photographs
19:00 Dinner and speeches
21:00 Greek dancers, first dance and party!
00:30 End of evening
Decor, Design & Flowers…
To create our vision for our small wedding in Greece, island greenery olive and willow were used with a mix of seasonal white flowers. My bouquet included white peonies, wax, lisianthus and was scented with eucalyptus.
The ceremony had an arch by the sea and a sweetheart table with a flower garland for our signatures.
The reception tables were filled with a delicate mix of ceramic and glass flower filled vases and cut glass candlesticks. As the evening fell the venue was lit by flickering candlelight.
Standout Moments & Unique Ideas…
I loved our couples shoot on the day and certainly didn’t feel the way other brides told me about you’ll be fed up of forcing a smile! Those particular photos are something we will treasure forever. They are hanging all over both our house and our parents houses!
We wanted to thank everyone for joining us, so on the table we had Thank You labels tied to olive sprigs, each guest had a wooden laser cut place name and an miniature ouzo to toast with us!
We asked for Greek dancers as a surprise to start the party. We weren’t sure what our guests were going to think but everyone loved them and got involved which we loved and it kicked off the party mood for the evening!
I’m so glad I decided in the moment to do a speech… I think every bride should do a speech as the norm!! Mark wasn’t expecting it and was really happy I did.
I researched dress designers and was drawn to Allure Bridals. I chose 8 dresses to try on but it was the first one I tried on that I got ‘that feeling’. I couldn’t believe I had found the dress so easily.
I was a size 16/18 when we brought the dress. Fast forward a year and it was alteration time. I had lost nearly 3 stone and the dress needed to be altered, I still loved the dress but with a little more confidence I decided to get creative. Lace was added to the top on both the front and the back and a slit was cut into the silk underskirt to show a cheeky bit of leg. I felt comfortable, feminine, was able to dance the night away and most importantly with getting married abroad I wasn’t hot as it was light to wear.
Most brides only get to wear their dress once but I got to wear it twice as we had a UK reception too and I loved it!
Mark wanted a smart look but not a formal suit and tie, so instead he opted for a good quality, white shirt from Father & Sons which we had tailored to fit him perfectly. His trousers where from Bee Inspired clothing and again he had them tailored to fit exactly as he had imagined them too. On the day he felt smart, confident and most importantly comfortable!
Their full length Marks and Spencer dress were the perfect choice as the multi-way style meant they could each wear it in the way that suited them best.
We had a pre-wedding dinner with all the guests at a more traditional style taverna on the seafront in the village where we were staying.
Advice for Planning a Small Wedding in Greece…
Don’t over think it! The most important thing is that you are bringing the people closest to you together for a special occasion so look forward to it when planning and enjoy the time when you are there.
Maxeen captured our wedding day and I couldn’t have asked for anything more. She was so friendly, relaxed and complimentary. Having our photos taken was enjoyable and fun and we couldn’t wait to see them!
The Perfect Partners
Wedding planner: Lefkas Weddings // Wedding Photographer: Maxeen Kim Photography // Ceremony & Reception Venue: Seaside Restaurant // Live Music: Isaak Tokatlidis @isaak_music // Wedding Band / DJ: Vagelis Rekatsinas @lefkada_weddings_dj // Flowers: Gourioti Flowers // Wedding Stationery: @aimeeclaredesigns // Wedding Cake: Patisserie Il Sapore @patisserie_ilsapore // Hair Stylist: // Effie Katsabiri @effiekatsabiri // Make-up: Bride did her own // Brides Dress: Allure Bridals // Brides Shoes: Betsey Johnson // Bride Earrings: @beaverbrooksthejewellers // Grooms Attire: Shirt – Father & Sons, Trousers – Bee Inspired // Bridesmaids Dresses: Marks and Spencer // Bride & Groom and Guests Villa: Theolos Village