Sasha and Nkem embraced their Russian and Nigerian cultures for a wedding at Carlton House Terrace
Photography: Charlotte Baladi / Slick Photography
“We consider ourselves Londoners and love the city vibe, so when we stepped into Carlton House Terrace, we were so impressed by the beautiful interiors and amazing staircase, that right away I could see us getting married there,” says Sasha. “Pastels worked really well with the venue’s interior – the wedding breakfast room had baby blue walls and gold chandeliers – so we decided on a dress code that was pastel dresses for ladies, and blue/grey suits for men. For the decor and flowers, I sent all my ideas in a PowerPoint presentation to our amazing florist at AF Event Couturier and she made it all possible. We used blue hydrangeas, white, pink and peach roses, yellow matthiola and some eucalyptus foliage, with Russian dolls to decorate the tables which guests took as gifts.”
“Nkem proposed to me over dinner at The Goring Hotel – the waiter brought in a silver plate with a cloche with a little box on the plate – and this is where I stayed the night before the wedding,” says Sasha. “Nkem came over before the ceremony and we had photos taken outside, before getting a black cab to Carlton House Terrace like true Londoners. I would say to any couple, donʼt assume London venues are very expensive just because of their central location. There’s so much choice (from pubs to hotels to private members’ clubs) and prices vary. We recently went to a barn wedding outside London and the cost of the barn with food and drinks was higher than our luxury townhouse wedding five minutes from Buckingham Palace!”
“Russian and Nigerian weddings are traditionally big celebrations but, we only invited 60 close family and friends, so it felt very intimate and warm,” adds Sasha.
“The Music Room at Carlton House Terrace, with its beautiful carved stone fireplace and large mirrors, was perfect for our vows, which were the most important part of our day.”
“My dress from the Pronovias Privée Collection had v-necklines at the front and back and embroidered floral appliqués with beading that made me feel like a princess,” says Sasha. “I loved the natural lustre of the mikado fabric that added light and intensity, plus the very full skirt, pockets and a natural waist.”
“Nkem went for a traditional British morning suit – I think he wanted the look of a prince because he knew I was going with a big fairytale dress!” During the evening, the couple also changed into bespoke Nigerian outfits and made a traditional African entrance to Nigerian music. “When we walked into the Wolfson Room for the wedding breakfast, we were welcomed by my parents holding Russian bread and salt, which is a traditional ceremonial welcome. We both took a piece from the loaf and dunked it in salt which symbolises that we will never be without the necessities of life and will always take care of each other.”