Tina and Tom were married in July in Tina’s family church followed by a beautiful reception at Quarry Bank Mill. They wanted their wedding to be informal with an English country garden feel with as many aspects of their wedding DIY’d as possible.
Tina and Tom look traditional and so beautiful with big smiles on their faces all day. I so love the pink bridesmaid dresses, those amazing balloon portraits and the homemade floral fabric details… oh so pretty. I LOVE these two.
Thanks so much to the wonderful Nicola Thompson Photography for sharing her gorgeous photographs with us today.
Names…. Tina and Tom
Wedding Date…. 7 July 2012
The Proposal…. On holiday in Kenya in December 2010, under a huge Tree of Life decorated in fairy lights. It was soon after Will proposed to Kate in Kenya but Tom claims he’d already decided to propose there.
The Vision for the day…. Traditional (church ceremony/wedding breakfast) but relaxed & informal, with an English Country Garden feel. Wanted the day to be personal and as DIY as possible. Decided on a dusky pink/sage green/ivory colour scheme.
The Planning process…. Had 19 month engagement planned (always wanted a summer wedding) so took time to plan details. Started with a massive venue search and then tried to tick off one major item a month from then on (tog, flowers, car etc). Being an accountant, there were a lot of spreadsheets involved in the planning process!
The Venue… Church was St Thomas Norbury in Hazel Grove. It’s my (Tina’s) family church which I’ve attended since I was 11. It was more special as our vicar was my bridesmaid’s dad and he knows me and Tom well.
We chose Quarry Bank Mill for the reception, a National Trust property. We wanted a unique venue; not a hotel or somewhere that looks like a conference centre. The main room at QBM is a blank canvas so I could put my own spin on the room. The mill itself is industrial looking but there are pretty meadows, gardens and a characterful courtyard.
The Dress + Accessories….. I chose a Benjamin Roberts dress, 2206. It was a big tulle dress, fitted down to the hips with a short train. I had a veil & side tiara. Bought four pairs of shoes before settling on a ‘sensible’ pair of Debenhams shoes. I went with my mum and sister (chief BM) to six different shops before deciding on the dress. I didn’t have a ‘the one’ moment but this dress ticked all my boxes and made me feel like very bridal without being too gypsy wedding.
Groom’s attire… Moss Bros grey tails with ivory cravat/waistcoat, and sage green for the groomsmen
The Readings + Music…. We had traditional entrance/exit music played by the organist. A family friend did a bible reading.
We chose Cat Power – Sea of Love for the first dance (we knew it from the film Juno). We practiced our ‘first shuffle’ in our living room and decided that we needed something as short and slow as possible! This fitted the bill and the lyrics are very touching.
Beautiful bridesmaids….. I had three bridesmaids: my wonderful older sister Marianne, my oldest school friend Ali (the vicar’s daughter), and my best friend from uni, Caroline. All three were really brilliant bridesmaids and were always enthusiastic about my wedding. They threw me a fab hen do in Chester (races/dinner/drinks/dancing). My bridesmaids wore chiffon Dessy dresses in Carnation and nude peep toe shoes
Beautiful blousy blooms. Found our florist’s blog
through a google search and instantly loved her style. My bouquet was a floaty mixture of roses, peonies and freesia in pinks and whites. My bridesmaids had something similar in white. Laura also did our table centres which were pretty English country garden arrangements in jam jars which I decorated with Cath Kidston/CK style fabric and ribbon & lace.
The Cake… I’ve been taking cake decorating evening classes for a couple of years so decided to make my own cake! I’d not done anything more than a two tier cake before so it was a bit of a challenge but I loved doing it. It was fruit and vanilla cake decorated with ribbon and a dome of handmade dusky pink sugar roses on the top
Your Photographer…. Our tog was one of our most important and best decisions. I did a HUGE google search, long list and short list, and then came across Nicola. We were drawn to her creative style and use of colour. We didn’t want bleak and serious looking black and white portraits. She asked if we had any props we wanted to use in photos. This got me thinking and I decided to order a huge bunch of pastel coloured balloons; and I’m so glad I did.
The Details + Decor…. I wanted to do lots of DIY bits & bobs and became reacquainted with my sewing machine. With the venue being a cotton mill it seemed appropriate to use fabric as much as possible. I used lots of Cath Kidston style fabic to make table runners, flag table numbers, bunting (actually, I cheated and bought that off another bride), and curtain tie backs. I also made the invites and orders of service, a wish tree, suitcase for cards (using my 95yo Swedish grandma’s vintage suitcase). I went charity shop raiding for retro board games for during the drinks reception/room turnaround and also a giant jenga (big hit). I provided a flip flop basket which I’m still getting thank-yous for.
The Honeymoon…. Nearly three weeks in Thailand chilling on a beach in a secluded resort, followed by a short (luxury) camping trip to the rainforest where we explored the jungle on foot and by kayak, and had an elephant experience where we fed and bathed them.
Memorable moments… The weather. The mill was flooded the day before due to torrential rain and had to be closed to the public. We thought our outdoor drinks reception and photos would have to be moved indoors, but on our wedding day, the sun came out! As a bonus, we had exclusive use of the venue too! So lucky! Tom busting some moves on the dancefloor! He was soooo happy and spent hours dancing his heart out. The speeches. My dad is Swedish. It’s Swedish tradition that anyone can give a speech. As a result, my eccentric uncle got up and performed an amusing limerick for us! Very amusing and a bit bonkers.
Advice for other couples… Take your time in planning, do your research and feel inspired.
Credit where credit is due…
Dress – Benjamin Roberts from Cheshire Bridal Wear http://www.cheshirebridalwear.co.uk/
Flowers – Laura Coleman Flowers http://www.lauracolemanflowers.co.uk/
Photographer – Nicola Thompson http://nicolathompsonphotography.co.uk/
Car – Beauford from Now & Forever http://www.nowandforever.uk.com/
Venues – St Thomas Norbury church, Quarry Bank Mill http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/quarry-bank-mill/
Bridesmaids dresses – Dessy from Alison Burgess Courture
Hair – Caroline Power
Make up – Michelle Sisson http://www.michellesisson.com/
DJ – Mark Rudden
Balloons – Rainbow balloons http://www.rainbowballoons.me.uk/
Thanks so very much to Tina and Tom for sharing their homemade wedding with us today XOXO Lou