Barn weddings in the UK and beyond have shot up in popularity thanks to the rustic trend in wedding décor. Full of character and history barns can provide vast space for a wedding day and are quite often set in picturesque settings.
Up and down the country you can find barns which provide wedding packages, or you could go off the beaten track and ask a farmer to lend you their barn. Whichever direction you go in, I have some beautiful inspiring ideas to show you how to have the perfect barn celebration.
There are a number of barns which hold a wedding licence so you can hold your ceremony at the same venue. You can go as simple or extravagant as you like in terms of décor, or opt for a legal ceremony or personal blessing.
Gents, it’s all about you this afternoon. Looking dapper and feeling great on your wedding day is so important for your confidence and to make the right impression. Whether you are hoping to be a relaxed groom, smart or on trend groom I have many different style ideas to help you find the right look.
First and foremost, what do you wear on a day to day basis? What do you think makes you look and feel great about yourself? You want to look like you on your wedding day and feel comfortable. Take a look below at some real life grooms each of whom had their own individual styles who looked super dashing.
Tweed suits have been making a resurgence, with beautiful texture, pattern and a nod to the countryside many a stylish groom are opting for this fabric. An abundance of colours and styles are available on the high street and by bespoke tailors.
The bow tie is bang on trend and looks really suave. You can go bold with pattern or colour, knitted or silk. You could make your own or buy fairly inexpensively to compliment your wedding day look.
Tags: Bow Tie Groom, Groom Style, Groomsmen, Military Groom, Traditional Groom, Tweed Groom
Image Jacob & Pauline Photography. “Eugene proposed to me whilst we were on a weekend break in Hampshire. We walked to the top of Butsers Hill in Queen Elizabeth Park before he got down on one knee, producing a diamond ring and making me cry for 10 minutes straight! It was a cold, windy day and we were surrounded by animals and dung everywhere but it was also the most romantic setting at the same time!” Anita and Eugene’s engagement shoot here.
On WWW the stories count just as much as the images. And so I have collated quotes from 75 real couples with their proposal stories to inspire those of you hoping to pop the question to your loved one.
OR maybe you are a romantic, or would like to leave a subtle hint to your other half… why not send them this feature ;-)
It seems proposals on holiday or over the festive season are a popular choice. The best tip I have is to think about making your proposal personal to you both as a couple and having it feel just right. If your partner is shy, think about an engagement at home or if you love to travel jump on a plane and have a surprise getaway.
“We were on holiday in Wales, we were staying in a beautiful old cottage at the bottom of a valley in the middle of nowhere, on the first night Kieren suggested we walk to the top of the hill, I took some encouragement but I agreed. When we got to the top the view was amazing, rolling hills and lots of sheep! Kieren got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
We had been together for six years and friends and family kept saying I’m sure it will be this holiday! And I’m so glad it was. It was very romantic and the way he proposed was a surprise.” Laura and Kieren’s wedding here.
“Ollie and I had visited New York a few years previously and fell in love with the City, we always wanted to go back, so decided to visit at Christmas time.
It was a cold but sunny Saturday afternoon, Ollie suggested going to Central Park for the day. Whilst walking through the Park, Ollie spotted a quiet little area and suggested that we sit down for a bit. I could see that Ollie was a bit agitated but didn’t think anything of it. It was all a bit of blur from then on, because the next thing I remember is Ollie with a ring in his hand asking me to marry him . Even though we had been together for so long (10 years), I still had no idea that he was going to propose. Of course there was no hesitation and I immediately said ‘yes’.
But that wasn’t the end of the surprise, Ollie then went on to tell me that the ring he had actually bought me was not ‘the ring.’ He said he didn’t want to deprive me of a shopping experience (I love shopping) and it was by no coincidence that our next stop was Tiffany’s on 5th Avenue. I am a bit.. okay a lot more impulsive than Ollie, so whilst Ollie had set aside two days for me to choose the ring, I knew within 10 minutes which one I wanted. The service in Tiffany’s on the day was amazing and what made it even more memorable was the handwritten note (from the lady that served us) that we received when we returned home from New York.” Amy and Ollie’s wedding here.
“We visited Prague in February and on a perfectly sunny and cold crisp day as we walked across Charles Bridge Adam got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. As soon as it sank in and we started telling all our friends and family we were so excited and decided to plan our wedding as soon as we could. The ring was stunning and Adam had sneaked off to the diamond quarter in Birmingham to get it made, he chose the diamond, band and clasp separately and it is perfect.” Faye and Adam’s wedding here.
“It took Andy 6 years to pop the question! A year before our holiday to San Francisco Andy was planning his proposal. This involved digging out old photos of us, and having to take new photos, each of which had the shape of a letter in – so that once bound in a photo book in the correct order spelled out the words “will you marry me?” All that was left for Andy to do was smuggle the book and engagement ring to San Francisco then sweat it out until the right moment. I knew something wasn’t right with Andy all that day (he claimed it was just jet-lag) but never guessed what he had planned. He walked us to a secluded spot between the Golden Gate Bridge and water bank and popped the question by giving me the book – just in time, as minutes after saying yes (and drying my eyes) a policeman showed up to move us along as we had been trespassing on private land!” Collette and Andy’s wedding here.
“We were on holiday in Malcesine, Lake Garda. After going for a lovely meal we were sat on a jetty overlooking the lake when he popped the question!” Daniela and Paul’s wedding here.
“Alexander proposed whilst we were playing Scrabble in front of an open fire at the Knockderry House Hotel in Cove, Scotland. He wrote it out on the Scrabble board half way through the game we were playing. Emma didn’t realise what was going on until he got to the letter ‘U’!” Alexander and Emma’s wedding here.
“After four years together, we had talked about getting married, but hadn’t made any firm plans. We booked a holiday to Turkey last year and one evening while we were sitting on the hotel’s jetty overlooking the river, Owen produced a large box and inside was a beautiful hammered silver bracelet, which he said was to commemorate our anniversary. Owen asked to look at the bracelet and he said that there was something written on the inside, I took a look and it was engraved with ‘Will you marry me, Lisa?’ As soon as I saw it, Owen got down on one knee and again asked me to be his wife. We arranged a day out to Hatton Gardens to choose an engagement ring once we returned from holiday. He certainly surprised me!” Lisa and Owen’s wedding here.
“Ben and I had a holiday booked for Santorini, but when he broke his foot playing football we had to cancel last minute! Unbeknownst to me, Ben had planned to propose there, so he was really upset about having to call it off.
When Ben’s foot healed, we quickly booked a holiday to Rome and then Florence. We visited the romantic sites, had some amazing gelato and admired the beautiful artwork, especially the sculptures of Gian Lorenzo Bernini. I actually think his version of David is much more powerful than Michelangelo’s! If you don’t believe me go look it up! It’s intense!
It was after a delicious dinner by the river in Florence, Ben got down on one knee on the famous Ponte Vecchio bridge where lover’s would lock a padlock and throw the key into the river, to become eternally bonded and proposed.” Julieta and Ben’s wedding here.
“January 2012. We were in New Zealand on holiday and it was the day before my birthday. We had planned to walk the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, near Taupo. The day trek, although beautiful, isn’t for the faint hearted and truthfully, I perhaps wasn’t as fit as I should have been! After setting off at 6am and walking for about 4 hours I threw the towel in. Although I didn’t want to continue, I was devastated that I had ruined this walk for Neil (who had always wanted to do this yet wouldn’t leave me), and we were pretty sombre on the drive back towards Taupo.
Neil suggested we stop near Mission Bay on Lake Taupo and eat our packed lunch. We were lakeside, watching the ducks and I was generally not paying attention when Neil gave me a hug and asked if I would be his wife. I wasn’t really taking him seriously until he says with vigour: ‘and I brought the ring!’ and fishes it out of his backpack. I couldn’t stop staring at it. He’d bought it in Newcastle and carried it across the world! It so transpires that he had planned to propose on top of the crossing, but we obviously hadn’t got there. It may not have happened in the way he had hoped, but it was still intimate and memorable and we were so happy (I, of course, said yes!). Our families and friends were quite shocked but overjoyed. It was a lovely time.” Rebecca and Neil’s wedding here.
“We were on holiday with friends in southern Spain, we had gone up to a town in the mountains called Mijas, when we sat down for dinner Dan said that he wanted to go and take a photograph of the sunset. When we got there he proposed and we then spent the evening celebrating with our friends with lots of Champaign.” Kate and Daniel’s wedding here.
“We’d taken a bit of time off work to go travelling. Towards the end of the trip we had a few luxury nights booked near the Great Barrier Reef. As we were relaxing one afternoon, Tom completely surprised me by asking if I wanted to marry him, my first reaction was to ask if he was serious! He then produced about thirty different cheap funny rings in a sparkly pink box; he’d carried them round three different countries without me noticing! It was a fabulous surprise.” Tom and Vix’s wedding here.
“It was a complete surprise. We went for a night away in North Norfolk for my 30th birthday. As soon as we arrived Richard suggested we go for a walk in the park land behind the hotel and told me to take my camera as last time we had been my battery was flat and I was gutted as the views were amazing. We went to the same spot I had wanted to take photos at before and that is were he proposed. No one else was around and the evening was perfect. The next day was my 30th birthday so we celebrated with some ring shopping and a meal in the evening with family.” Richard and Rebecca’s wedding here.
“We were staying at the Sanderson Hotel in London for my birthday and after a relaxing time in the spa we returned back to the room to find Champagne & Chocolate covered Strawberries waiting. Joss told me to pour the champagne whilst he went to the bathroom and when he returned we toasted the Champagne “to us”. Then he reached into his pocket & pulled out a small box & to my disbelief he opened it and proposed. I was shocked! But extremely happy and of course accepted. It was so intimate and such a special moment, a moment I will remember forever.” Tori and Joss’ wedding here.
“In San Francisco, on holiday after attending our friends wedding in Lake Tahoe. The proposal was due to take place on the Golden Gate Bridge but it was too windy so took place much later, after many cocktails in a bar!” Susie and Sean’s wedding here.
“We went to Castleton, Derbyshire for the weekend and were out walking in the beautiful countryside! No one-knee proposal and not a glass of champagne or a rose petal in sight…it was this that made it perfect for me! A pint of beer and a packet of crisps in the local to celebrate instead and we chose the ring the following day – together.” John and Charlotte’s engagement here.
“Woody proposed to me while we were on holiday in Tenerife. It was our first proper holiday since coming back from travelling a couple of years before so we were happily sat there watching the sun set when Woody surprised me by popping the question!
The ring is his mothers’ engagement ring, she died when he was 9 so it is such an honour for his Dad to give it to him to give to me, it made me feel so special and is much more meaningful to me than a new ring.” Andrew (Woody) and Sarah’s wedding here.
Image by Binky Nixon. “We got engaged in Goa in December 2012, it was so special, on a rickety bridge over a lake, with both his hands held into fists, he told me to choose a hand- Ben is a bit of a pranker, and always tries to scare me so i was a bit worried as it would probably be a cockroach or something horrid, but no, he got down on one knee and proposed! It was such a surprise ! We kissed and turned around to be greeted by an explosion of fireworks- that Ben had not organised, it was just perfect timing.” Lou and Ben’s engagement shoot here. (more…)
Keeping your guests and yourselves fed and watered has a major impact on your wedding day. It can also take up a large chunk of your wedding budget especially if you go down a three course meal route. So I have some traditional, quirky, fun and budget wedding food ideas for you.
Three Course Meal
If you go for a ‘traditional’ wedding venue, most of them cater with a three course wedding meal option. If you want a formal sit down meal and good food this can be a great route to go down. Check with your venue or caterers that you can have a menu tasting before the day, to check you are happy with what you will be served.
The barbecue is a lovely and relaxed option especially for summer weddings. There are caterers out there that offer this option, with guests mingling with the sight and sound of the food cooking. It also can suit many a palette with plain or complex tastes possible. If you fancy DIYing your wedding BBQ that is totally possible too, with a little organisation you can save a fair sum.
Buffets have an almost retro feel to them. With a community effort you can get all of your guests involved by asking them to bring a plate. You can also ask your wedding venue or caterers for a buffet option. Buffets can be great for family affairs or for fussy eaters as guests can pick and choose what they would like to eat.
Tags: Afternoon Tea, BBQ, Buffet, Fish & Chips, Food, Gluten Free, Hog Roast, Ice Cream, Planning
The wedding bouquet is drying, your album has arrived and you have a post honeymoon ‘glow’.
What now? Well a thank you is a great way to start.
Saying thank you will lift your spirits post wedding, while politely giving thanks to your guests and wedding suppliers. People like validation that you are happy with what you gave them, be it a gift or their time.
So how to say the perfect ‘thank you’ ?
Traditionally wedding thank yous are sent or given out in card form through the post. Buy or DIY your own, ask your wedding stationery designer to wizz some up for you or ask your photographer for photo card options using your favourite portraits.
You could well have a hundred cards to write but it is lovely to receive a personal message. Whether you are thanking for helping with something in particular or about a gift you may have received or just for coming along. Write them together, and make an evening of it. Post them in the mail or deliver them by hand. Add a little gift if you so wish. But do try to make them personal to the recipient and hand write your messages. (more…)