I so love following a couple’s story, and today i get to do just that.
You may recognise Sarah and Ben from their awesome engagement shoot that i featured back in March… well now they are husband and wife.. yay!!
Sarah and Ben were married in April at the beautiful Pangdean Farm, Near Brighton. They wanted their day to be fun and laidback with a mismatch of things they love. They didn’t want a theme or colourscheme, and i love that… and yes Sarah it works perfectly :-)
They DIY’d many aspects of their wedding including the flowers… and i adore Sarah’s Anemone bouquet…. stunning!!
Thanks so much to the amazing Laura Babb Photography for sharing her gorgeous photography with us today.
Names…. Sarah & Ben
Wedding Date…. Thursday 5th April 2012
The Proposal…. Ben proposed on Christmas morning 2010. We were still in our PJ’s, he said he had forgotten a present & disappeared upstairs, before I knew it he was on one knee & I was saying yes and drinking bubbles for breakfast. Did I mention this was in front of his whole family – including his dad dressed up as santa claus….
The Vision for the day…. We wanted a fun, laidback day incorporating everything we love. No theme, no colour scheme, not “matchy, matchy”. A bit of an alien concept to our friends & family, but I think we pulled it off?!
The Planning process…. We didn’t have a huge budget & didn’t want to pay people to do things that we could do ourselves, so it turned out to be quite a DIY wedding. The planning was fun, once we had figured out what we wanted. It is so easy to get swept along in wedding world, it was good to keep looking back at our original list for a reality check.
The Venue… We only looked at one venue and had found it even before we got engaged. We were looking for a place to have a joint 30th birthday party, it was a bit expensive for a party so we scrapped that idea. When we got engaged we knew it was perfect for our relaxed day, the staff at Pangdean were really helpful from start to finish, they allowed us to put our stamp on the day and really looked after everyone.
The Dress + Accessories….. Justin Alexander 8530, It came with a veil that attached as a bustle, I wasn’t a fan of this, so took it apart and sewed in a comb so I could use it as a veil. I knew I wouldn’t wear the veil for long so I also made a hair clip for our flower girl and myself with the left over flowers.
Luckily the dress did not need any statement jewellery, as I’m not a big jewellery wearer. Bens Nan lent me her pearl drop earrings and I wore a sapphire bracelet – a wedding present from my mum.
Finding the dress…. Erm Google!? I spend a while thinking I didn’t want a typical wedding dress and really didn’t relish the thought of trying on lots of dresses to find “the one”! I had a Google and found a dress I liked the look of, turns out in was just within my budget and the only stockists were around the corner from where we live or in the town where my parents live. I booked an appointment to try it on and then put it to the test when I went shopping with my mum & sister – not telling them I had found the dress already, it was their favourite to. Sold. The girls at Leonie Claire were really lovely & made the whole process so easy.
Groom’s attire… Ben wore a blue/grey suit from next, with waistcoat, white shirt, grey tie & pocket hankie finished off with some super shiny shoes from Ted Baker. He looked awesome – but I am a bit biased.
The Readings + Music…. I walked in to “Skinny Love” the Birdie Version and we walked out to “So Here we are” by Bloc Party, just because we like them.
My Brother read a shortened version of Johnny Cash’s “I love you because” & Ben’s sister read “This is What Love is” by Coulson Macleod. We had the option of writing our own vows, but neither of us is very creative in that way so we chose to have the readings as they nicely summed up how we feel about each other.
Pangdean is not a registered wedding venue so we had a very quick civil ceremony the day before with immediate family. The Ceremony at Pangdean was was conducted by an independent celebrant, it was really nice to have such a personalised ceremony and we got lots of nice comments from our guests. None of them had experienced one before so we were relieved they enjoyed it!
Ben made a playlist for the background music for the drinks reception & dinner. In the evening we had a band – the In-laws, the sound engineer also doubled up as a DJ, they were all fab and got everyone up dancing.
Beautiful bridesmaids….. I had my younger sister as a bridesmaid, she wore a Grey Karen Millen Dress with bright red shoes. Our eldest niece was our flower girl and wore a dress & cardigan from next.
The Flowers… I decided at the very beginning that I would do the flowers myself. I’m not a florist & can barely arrange flowers in a vase, so I did get a few dubious looks when I shared my plans, but we were going for relaxed after all!?
We started collecting jars and between a pair of weaning twins and my sister’s love of Dolmio we were sorted! I wrapped these in lace & ribbon and filled them with multicolour tulips to decorate the venue and the tables. We had so many decorated jars left over we popped tea lights in them and scattered them around the venue.
The bridesmaid’s bouquets were “hand tied” anemones (held together with an elastic band then covered with lace – very technical!) and I had ranuculus. I think they all turned out quite well – even if I do say so myself & all for £200!
The Cake… Cheese! We Love Cheese! The venue did all of the catering and created an amazing Cheese stack, which we served up with ham, bread & chutney’s for the evening food. However, I also love cake, so challenged a few friends & family to a bake off, we had so many yummy cakes and they went down a storm!
Your Photographer…. The lovely Laura Babb. I didn’t really know where to start when looking for a photographer, we really didn’t want lots of posed group shots, just unknowing photos of people enjoying themselves. I saw some of Laura’s work on a wedding blog & they caught my eye, a few emails later & we were standing on top of iron piles for our engagement shoot. Laura along with Emma-Kate captured our day perfectly for us and we have some great photos that will help us remember the day. Big thank you to Laura & Emma-Kate!
The Details + Decor…. The Barn is beautiful so we did very little to decorate the venue other than flowers and tea lights. Our table plan was photos of the Beach huts along Hove seafront, these fitted perfectly with the bright colours of the flowers and was a little nod to the seaside, where we have lived together for the past 4 years & love to bits.
We brought some mini fridge magnets from Habitat, popped in a picture of each of our guests and attached a hand stamped name tag with some ribbon, doubling up as favours and place names. It had been really nice visiting family & friends and seeing them up on their fridge doors!
We had lots of kids at the wedding so we gave them their own table decked out with balloons, colouring, easter treats and some glow sticks – which were really popular with the big kids later in the day. We also had a cosy area with sofas, much appreciated by the grandparents tired out from dancing.
I managed to convince Ben to let me set up his Mac as a photo booth, I made a few props with templates from the internet & some coloured craft foam, we got some great photos… We also put out some blank CD’s and asked people to copy their photos and send back to us.
The Honeymoon…. Neither of us is good at sitting still for very long, so a beach holiday was out of the question. We spent three weeks travelling around Sri Lanka, it’s a beautiful country. We squeezed in a bit of relaxing on the beach, Ayurvedic massages, sightseeing, hiking and safari. We loved every minute & have our guests to thank as we asked for money towards our honeymoon as a gift.
Memorable moments… This is tough, the whole day was fab. It really does pass by so fast, we really enjoyed watching everyone enjoying themselves whilst we all sat down to eat, it was the one time everyone kept still enough for us to take everything in. We have really enjoyed catching up with everyone after the wedding & hearing all of their stories!
Advice for other couples… I probably sound like every other bride, but really don’t be worried about doing what you want. It definitely isn’t the easiest way, but our guests really enjoyed the day as it was “very us”. Remember that no guest will be following wedding blogs as avidly as a bride in full planning mode, so don’t worry if something you like has been done 100 times. On the flip side, don’t try to be different for the sake of it. If you love sugared almonds, go for it!
Credit where credit is due…
Pangdean Farm http://www.pangdean.com/
Leonie Claire http://www.leonieclaire.com/
Laura Babb http://babbphoto.photoshelter.com/portfolio
Second shooter – Emma-Kate Photography emma-katephotography.com
Prue Peters (Celebrant) http://ceremonycelebrantsussex.co.uk/
Sarah i love your advice above and i have to agree… even as a wedding blogger… that not stressing about the details too much is very important :-) Do you agree?
Thanks so much to Sarah and Ben for sharing their beautiful wedding with us today XOXO Lou
Tags: Anemone Bouquet, Anemone Wedding Flowers, Babb Photo, Barn Wedding, Converse, DIY Wedding, Farm Wedding, Justin Alexander Wedding Dress, Multicolour Wedding Ideas, Next Groom, Pangdean Farm, Rachel Simpson, Real Weddings, Spring Wedding
Subscribe to Comments (RSS)