Whimsical Wonderland Weddings UK Wedding Blog 2016-09-28T13:00:09Z http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/feed/atom WordPress Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Wednesday Wedding Wonders & Winter Wedding Top Tips]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=180351 2016-09-28T10:40:05Z 2016-09-28T13:00:09Z Stylish Floral Barn Wedding http://www.sarareeve.com/

Image by Sara Reeve // Stylish Floral Barn Wedding

 

Welcoming another Wednesday, the year has flown hasn’t it? I am loving the autumn weather and all of the gorgeous summer weddings landing in my inbox right now. Happy dance. I was thrilled to to hear that Whimsical Wonderland Weddings was named the 4th top UK wedding blog again this year by Vuelio and I was interviewed by them in their blogger spotlight feature. I wrote a super fun article for Belle Bridal magazine this month and was also included in an article in Elle Decor online and Derbyshire Life Magazine. Yay.

I spent a lovely morning at Tie The Knot Wedding Carnival in Letchworth on Sunday, you may have followed by antics on my Instagram Stories and Snapchat feeds. There were some brilliant suppliers there who I really enjoyed catching up with.

Let’s take a peek at some of the loveliest weddings on the net this week.

 

WWW’s Wedding of the Week

 

Anthropologie Inspired Wedding // So many lovely touches.

 

Pretty Home Made Pastel Floral Wedding http://www.stephanieswannweddings.co.uk/

Image by Stephanie Swann Weddings // Pretty Home Made Pastel Floral Wedding

 

LAUREN + STEPHEN

All-Natural & Boho ~ They Stuck To The Beautiful Basics

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Ethereal Fall Mammoth Lakes Wedding

Lavender Inspired Wedding

Rustic outdoor Ojai wedding

Handmade farm wedding for under $10K

 

Beautiful Bicycle Country Marquee Wedding http://www.emmabphotography.com/

Image by Emma B Photography // Beautiful Bicycle Country Marquee Wedding

 

Relaxed and Simple Art Gallery Wedding with the Bride in a Suit

A Forest Filled With Love On Their Special Day

April & Sebastian

Camp-themed wedding in the Redwoods

How One Wedding Blended Two Cultures Seamlessly

Ellen and Michael’s wedding at Crooked Willow Farms

 

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

Its no secret that WWW Supplier Love member Rebecca Douglas loves to capture winter weddings and she has put together some hints and tips for couples marrying in winter months.

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography
Plan for the worst case with weather, have umbrellas at the ready and just be ready to embrace whatever happens, laugh hard and remember that whatever the weather it is your wedding day and it will weave in to tell your story.

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

Bring alternative footwear so if you do go outside you can walk for photos with ease and not worry about damaging your shoes.

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

Wrap up warm and have some extra layers to wrap up in when you’re outside to keep you cosy when moving around for photos and then be able to take them off.

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

Weave in seasonality to really reflected the cosy, rustic feeling that winter brings.

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

Check local events as it might just be something is happening that would make for epic photos, like Guy Fawkes or a Christmas Parade!

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

Trust your photographer and chase the light as sometimes opportunities shimmer and its worth making a dash outside between courses for some dreamy portraits!

 

Winter Wedding Top Tips Advice Rebecca Douglas Photography

 

If you have a winter wedding planned and are searching for a photographer, I’d really recommend dropping Rebecca a line.

Happy wedding Wednesday xo Lou

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Pretty Home Made Pastel Floral Wedding]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=178857 2016-09-15T12:33:42Z 2016-09-28T06:00:42Z Pretty Home Made Pastel Floral Wedding http://www.stephanieswannweddings.co.uk/

 

I bet my bottom dollar that you won’t have seen more pretty florals than these today. Gorgeous arrangements in pink, blue and yellow were created for Delia and Graeme by The Cracked Pot. What a stroke of brilliance they were; an abundance of daisies, roses, billy balls, hydrangeas and lavender were all used to great effect. WOW.

WWW readers Delia and Graeme were married on the 26th March 2016 at The Tythe Barn in Oxfordshire, which they fell for as soon as they walked through the doors. To create an enjoyable, relaxed and personal day for their nearest and dearest, they created a list of their must haves. It’s always a great starting point when wedding planning and ensures you are both happy and on the right track too.

The floral theme continued into the sweet stationery, adorable flower girls dresses and the dashing bow ties too. Delia chose to wear a lace gown by Lusan Mandongus teamed with a lace edged veil in which she looked incredible.

Thanks goes to the wonderful Stephanie Swann Weddings for providing these images.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | It was Christmas Eve and Graeme had agreed to cook us both dinner that evening while I went to visit my family with a sack full of presents. When I arrived back home, after running around after my nieces and nephews all day, I was greeted with a kiss and a glass of bubbly and told to put my feet up; he had everything under control. It was clear when I sat down at the candlelit table, that Graeme had been working hard whilst I had been gone and had cooked up a storm in the kitchen. He had put so much effort into this dinner – we even had pommes fondant, which he’d never cooked or eaten before in his life. It was absolutely delicious! We were half way through dessert, chatting away and laughing as usual, when unexpectedly Graeme got up, reached for something in his pocket and knelt down on one knee next to our beautifully decorated Christmas tree. I was utterly gobsmacked: in his hand was the most beautiful ring and that was when he asked me to marry him and of course I said yes!

THE VISION | Before I met Graeme, I had never really imagined what my wedding would be like. However, when we both started playing with the idea of planning our wedding, we decided that we wanted it to be a relaxed affair, surrounded by our closest family and friends. It was important to us that everyone we cared about enjoyed our day, therefore we created a list of must haves and worked towards achieving that.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | Graeme and I both split the planning between us. He was responsible for booking the entertainment, sorting suits, getting favours and booking a surprise mini-moon for us both after the wedding. Everything else was down to me. Generally, once the big things were booked, we really didn’t have to do much until a month or so before the actual wedding day. Having everything recorded in a spreadsheet really helped to keep our spending and payments on track, as well as it acting as a reminder of the things we needed to do.

THE VENUE | Once we had decided to get married in a barn, we scoured the Internet and eventually created a shortlist of potential venues to visit. Funnily, the venue that was originally a last minute ‘add-on’ to the list, happened to be the perfect setting for our wedding. The moment we both entered through the doors of The Tythe Barn in Launton, Bicester, we were awestruck by its charm and beauty. The more that we saw of the barn, the more we fell in love with it and when we found out that the caterers were Jamie Oliver’s Fabulous Feasts, we were completely sold! The Tythe Barn ticked every box: a stunning location, excellent food and a warm and intimate atmosphere.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | The dress was a beautiful Lusan Mandongus creation. It was ivory in colour with delicate layers of silk and lace, kissed by subtle beading that gently glistened when touched by light. I loved the lace detail on the dress and in particular the eyelash lace on the straps and the low V-back. I also had the dress specially altered so that it had a sweetheart neckline, as this was the shape that I preferred. I chose an ivory pair of shoes from Rachel Simpson, which I instantly fell in love with at a wedding show that I went to. I didn’t mind paying more than I would normally pay for a pair of shoes, especially since I was planning on pairing them with a pair of skinny jeans after the wedding! My head piece and earrings were from Glitzy Secrets and I wore my mum’s teardrop shaped necklace with a diamanté piece attached to the clasp of the necklace at the back of my neck.

FINDING THE DRESS | My first experience of wedding dress shopping was at a wedding show in Kensington Olympia. I really didn’t have the faintest idea of what I wanted but certainly enjoyed perusing the many rails of beautiful dresses on show. I actually found my dress in a small boutique called Teokath in Wimbledon. I was with my mum at the time and I tried on all different styles of dress, in all kinds of luxurious materials – even a massive ball gown – which made me feel like I belonged in a fairytale but I kept coming back to one dress in particular: a lace, fishtail number, with delicate shoulder straps and gorgeous beading. After trying on many different dresses, it was clear that nothing could or would compare to this dress. The moment that really confirmed it though, was when I tried on a veil; this was the first time I had actually felt like a real bride and when I turned around I noticed that my mum was crying her eyes out. I just knew then that I had to have it.

GROOM’S ATTIRE | Graeme was adamant that he wasn’t going to wear a top hat and tails at our wedding, therefore he went in search of a three-piece suit. He finally settled on a blue Ted Baker suit, which he teamed with a brown pair of leather brogues. He also wanted to wear a bow tie. Eventually he decided on a peach floral tie for himself and sky-blue bow ties for his best man and our fathers to wear, which were bought from The Tie Room.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | The music we selected for our ceremony was chosen purely on the basis that it meant something to either, one, or both of us. For instance, I walked down the aisle to music from one of my favourite films of all times: Pretty Woman, called ‘He Sleeps’. We had also chosen to walk back up the aisle together to music from Pride and Prejudice, as it has a very special meaning to us.

As well as this, we wanted some of our closest friends to be involved in the ceremony and so selected four short readings. The first was ‘The Art of a Good Marriage’ by Wilferd Arlan, followed by an extract from ‘Les Miserables’ by Victor Hugo. The next reading was chosen especially by Graeme and I was unsure as to how this was going to be received by everyone. I had needn’t worry: the song lyrics from World in Motion, rapped by the Liverpool legend, (Graeme’s words) John Barns, was read with such seriousness, that everyone couldn’t help but chuckle. Turns out, it was one of the best readings of the day! We ended our ceremony with a ‘Native American Love Poem’, which was the perfect way to begin our adventure as husband and wife.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I knew that I wanted my bridesmaids to wear a dress in sky-blue, to match the flowers I had selected as well as the bow ties, however finding a dress that all of the girls liked and in that colour was a little bit of a challenge. Eventually, the bridesmaid dresses were ordered online from JJ’s House. I had decided that I didn’t mind if they each wanted a different style of dress, as long as the colour matched, which meant that those that preferred long dresses could feel just as comfortable as those that wanted a short dress.

The flower girls, six of them in total, wore a sky-blue or peach dress, which had a pretty floral pattern, along with a short sleeved cardigan in matching colours. These were ordered from Lindy Bop and were excellent quality and good value.

THE FLOWERS | I can not express how much I loved my flowers, which were from a florist called The Cracked Pot in Ealing. When I sat down with my florist, she listened to absolutely everything: all of my thoughts, ideas and visions, she was able to put it all together and create exactly what I wanted. When I saw my bouquet on my wedding day, my eyes instantly lit up, I wasn’t expecting it to be so perfect.

THE CAKE | The cake was expertly made by the fair hands of Graeme’s mum and it was utterly gorgeous in every way! We were unbelievably lucky to have someone, who was willing to bake sponge, after sponge, after sponge, in search of the perfect mix, in which to make our wedding cake. On the actual day, both of Graeme’s parents had the task of assembling the many layers and tiers of Victoria sponge and beautifully decorated it with fresh berries and a dusting of icing sugar. It truly was a masterpiece and it tasted just as good as it looked!

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | When we started the planning process, there was definitely one thing that we both agreed on from the very beginning and that was that we would have to have Stephanie Swann capture our wedding day! For many, trying to find a suitable photographer can be difficult but for us, we knew that our day would be in safe hands having seen her work before at other weddings. On the day itself, Steph was a true professional. She really went above and beyond in order to encapsulate every moment of our day in beautiful still images. We are not sure exactly how she did it but she managed to be everywhere, all at once, all without being even the slightest bit intrusive. She is extraordinarily talented! We ended up with hundreds of images, each of which tells the narrative of the most spectacular day of our lives so far.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Generally all of the smaller details were handmade by both of us. I collected many different floral materials and papers and set about hand crafting name labels, table plans and decorating glass jars for the flowers on the tables.

THE HONEYMOON | Straight after the wedding we escaped to Venice for a short break, which was all arranged by Graeme as a surprise for me. He honestly couldn’t have picked a more perfect destination – truly magical. For our actual honeymoon, we are going to Mauritius, where we will most definitely be taking advantage of the 5 star luxury resort.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | The most memorable moments have to be walking down the aisle towards Graeme – I thought that my heart was about to burst out of my chest; the look on Graeme’s face when he saw me for the first time in my dress; exchanging the rings; the first dance; the delicious dessert and seeing all of the happy smiles of our friends and family when entering the barn for our wedding breakfast.

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Firstly, remember that it’s your day, so do what you want to do. Secondly get an awesome photographer – the day goes by in such a whirlwind that you want to try and remember every little detail, which is difficult when you are trying to absorb everything that is going on. It can be quite overwhelming but having the memories captured in photographs makes everything that little extra special.

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photographer | Stephanie Swann Weddings

Wedding dress | Teokath

Tailor | Chambers Bespoke Tailors

Florist | The Cracked Pot

Jewellery | Glitzy Secrets

Veil | Rainbow Club

Invitations | Tree of Hearts

Flower girl dresses | Lindy Bop

Bridesmaid dresses | JJs House

Shoes | Rachel Simpson

Hair and make up | Bride By Becky 

 

Ah so perfect. I love it all.

Many thanks to Delia and Graeme for sharing their gorgeous wedding story here on WWW xo Lou

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Pretty Pastel DIY Steam Railway Village Hall Wedding]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=178692 2016-09-15T12:32:36Z 2016-09-27T13:00:05Z DIY Steam Railway Village Hall Wedding http://www.charlotterazzellphotography.com/

 

I do love it when I get to feature a wedding with a dash of unique. Today’s wedding featured a steam train to transport guests and the newly-weds from ceremony to reception. It made for a truly memorable moment and some stunning portraits to boot.

WWW readers Matthew and Emma got hitched on 28th May 2016 at Swanage Town Hall followed by a relaxed reception at Harman’s Cross Village Hall in Dorset. I do love a village hall celebration, they always feel to homely and lovingly put together. Matthew and Emma are chefs and food was their top priority, they chose a scrumptious BBQ meal for their guests with Matt’s homemade shortbread and tiffin for dessert. Their loved ones were also gifted Matt’s BBQ Rub in sweet jars, a foodies delight. Just wait until you hear all about their honeymoon too.

The hall was decorated in sweet pastel lanterns, natural blooms and hessian table runners. It all looked so fresh and pretty. Emma wore a flowing gown with sweet beaded cape, while Matthew chose a navy suit and pink tie. Didn’t they look lovely?

Thanks so very much to wedding directory member and Supplier Love fave Charlotte Razzell Photography for sharing these gorgeous images.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | February 2014 at Limewood Hotel, Hampshire – which is part of the hotel group that I (Emma) work for. We were celebrating 5 years together by staying at the 5* hotel for a discounted price (one of the perks) and had spent the day relaxing in the spa. Turns out Matt wasn’t very relaxed at all and nervously popped the question as we sat down for dinner! He had intended to wait until the end but decided to bite the bullet as the restaurant was almost empty at that time. We had talked about the future and getting married, but it still came as surprise, particularly when I learned that my parents and sister knew about it beforehand – Matt normally sucks at surprises!

THE VISION | As we both work as chefs, and have both worked in big hotels where they churn out mass-produced 3 course dinner weddings, we wanted to do something as far removed from that as possible. We just wanted a relaxed, chilled out wedding, but also wanted everyone to have a good time, and feel that they had been looked after. As food is such a big part of our lives we also wanted to feed everyone well!

THE PLANNING PROCESS | After setting the date we had over a year to plan, so we got things done as soon as we could, so that we weren’t doing everything last minute. We only looked at a couple of venues, and to be honest the cost was a big deciding factor. We just couldn’t stomach paying £3k plus just for the venue!

Once we had our date set at the venue, which fell perfectly on a bank holiday weekend we chose our caterer and booked the ceremony. We had heard good things about Julian at Country Foods Catering in Swanage, and we really liked the fact that he was a real chef, like us, not an events manager or coordinator who perhaps wouldn’t understand exactly what we were after. He was very open to suggestions, and would cook us whatever we wanted (within reason!) and did lots of extra bits and pieces on the day.

Everything else started to fall into place, our amazing photographer Charlotte Razzell who was recommended to us when our original photographer had to pull out. We are so happy with the photos and she was the perfect balance of friendly and professional. We got a lot of comments about how great she’d been.

I chose and ordered lanterns, started collecting jugs for flowers and thinking about other details. We got lighting and a fire pit from Camelot Marquees, and straw bales from Ben at the goat farm in Swanage. I always had the ‘big picture’ in my head, and would sometimes find it quite overwhelming. Matt would just ask for a list of jobs and take it off my hands.

We pretty much organised the whole day ourselves, however our families and friends very kindly helped before, during and after with the process of setting up, and then clearing up the next day. We really couldn’t have done it without them.

We thought about hiring a co-ordinator for the ‘day-of’ but I’m so glad we didn’t. There were a couple of times during the day I had to check a couple of things with Julian and I did forget the cheque for the band! However these only turned out to be small things, and really didn’t cause much stress. We had so many great people there who just helped to make things happen, so the day had a really nice flow, which was my main concern. We armed my brother-in-law with a megaphone and he helped to gather people for photos and call everyone in to sit for food, speeches, first dance etc.

BUDGET | Not including honeymoon, about £10,000.

THE VENUE | As I mentioned we weren’t keen on paying thousands just for the venue, so we chose Harman’s Cross Village Hall. As village halls go it is very nice – recently built and right next to the restored steam train station in the hills of Purbeck. It had great facilities, loads of outdoor space and a rental price of £995 for 48 hours – perfect! It was a blank canvas so we could really make it our own, and they were flexible with what we could or couldn’t do. There was loads of space outside so we had a outside bar, drinks and the BBQ was set up outside. They don’t have a marriage license so we decided to get married in Swanage Town Hall. I was fairly dubious as I didn’t like the idea of a ‘registry office’ but found the hall was actually quite lovely when we went to see it.

The location of the Town Hall in the centre of Swanage meant that we could take the steam train from Swanage to Harman’s Cross which was so nice! It was such an unique part of the day, and really worked well in terms of getting everyone from A to B. The photos we got at Harman’s Cross with Charlotte were so lovely as well.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Dress from Berketex Bride in Sheffield. Shoes from Irregular Choice, Schuh. Earrings from Etsy. Capelet and Hair Clip from ASOS. Necklace was bought for me by Matt a few years ago. Bracelet was a 21st birthday present from my parents.

FINDING THE DRESS | I don’t class myself as much of a “girly girl” so I really didn’t enjoy the first day I went out dress shopping with my Mum and Sister. I hadn’t really thought about what I wanted and I felt quite uncomfortable being strapped into all these strange dresses. By the end of the day I was wearing a shorter dress that suited me, but somehow I just didn’t like it.

That evening I had a look online and decided that I wanted something long and fairly simple.

We went out again the next day and I tried on a few cheaper dresses round the £200-300 mark. Whilst I really liked a couple of them, I could really tell the difference between them and the more pricey dresses in terms of fabric and structure.

Our final stop was Berketex where I tried on a few more dresses. The last dress I tried on was a chiffon gown with a lace up back, and a not too puffy skirt. It had a lovely little beaded belt with it, and the rest of the gown was plain. The top was kind of rouched, Grecian style, and felt modern and feminine but not princessy. I felt like I was wearing the dress, rather than the other way round. It cost £700 plus £200 in alterations. My mum kindly paid for the dress; if she didn’t I would probably have gone for one of the cheaper options! I also saw some lovely dresses online but I was more than happy with the dress we I found with my Mum.

My only gripe was that the dress was strapless, and I would have preferred something a bit more covering. I found the beaded cape on ASOS, and when I tried it with the dress it gave the whole look a bit more of a vintage feel, rather than just looking like a ‘cover up’.

GROOM’S ATTIRE | Me and Matt went shopping in Bournemouth and found his lovely 3 piece suit in House of Fraser. It was around £150 and fit him really nicely so we bought it several months before the wedding. We just asked the Dads and Matt’s best man to get their own suits! To give the blokes a bit of uniformity we bought ties from Racing Green at Debenhams and my Grandma made pocket squares for them all using a coordinating fabric from Liberty in London.

Matt got his brogues and belt from Next, and borrowed cufflinks from my dad. My Dad also sported his pocket watch which was given to him by my Mum’s father.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | Whilst everyone was waiting for my big entrance we had Seu Jorge’s ‘The Life Aquatic Sessions’ playing in the back ground, it’s one of my favourite films and we both are fans of David Bowie (but who isn’t?). I came in to ‘Sweet Thing’ by Van Morrison.

We wanted to have some form of reading but didn’t want anything too cheesy, so went for ‘The Art of Marriage’ by Wilfred Peterson. It’s about how you have to create a good marriage, and that it is about being a good partner, not just finding the perfect partner; Matt’s parents read it to us and it was rather poignant coming from them, a married couple of over 30 years!

Our exit music was ‘I was made for loving you’ by KISS and was Matt’s choice! But it was a bit of fun and put a big smile on our faces.

Our first dance was ‘Need your love so bad’ which our live act ‘Wild Nights Duo’ covered for us. It was an easy tempo to slow dance to (neither of us are great dancers!) and seemed rather fitting. The musicians were great, they did a mix of new and old songs so everyone had a dance. Two of my favourite memories were our best man accosting the microphone and singing ‘Matt and Emma!’ To the tune of The Proclaimers’ ‘500 Miles’ and us all stomping our feet along to Mumford and Sons! I had a such a great time dancing with all our friends.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I decided to have my sister as my one and only bridesmaid. She found a lovely navy blue dress on ASOS which had a similar style top to my dress. She is rather handy with a sewing machine and made herself a little jacket out of the same material from Liberty which we used for the boy’s pocket squares. We both did our own hair and make-up on the morning.

Kate was a massive help the day before when we were setting up the venue. She understood exactly the look I was going for and has a great eye for detail.

THE FLOWERS | Choosing a florist was easy as our landlord owns a flower shop located downstairs from our flat! Victoria at Bloom in Swanage uses seasonal blooms and wild flowers which she ties into lovely natural bouquets. She made mine and Kate’s bouquets and the buttonholes. She also made a cake topper and supplied me with a load of flowers for the jugs on the tables.

My incredibly talented friend and the head gardener from work, Jo Macina, also foraged loads of wild flowers and stems which she mixed with the flowers from Victoria. I was blown away when I saw all the amazing arrangements, they looked quite wild and natural, and every jug was different, but they all looked so beautiful. There were herbs and wild garlic flowers which was a lovely nod to our careers as chefs.

THE CAKE | My mum makes the best fruit cake and volunteered to make the cake. She also made my sisters’ a few year ago. We opted for a simple 3 tier round cake, all 3 layers were fruit cake and simply iced. When I collected the flower topper from Victoria I chose a sage green ribbon to match the arrangement, which set off the cake beautifully. Everyone said how lovely the cake looked; mum did an amazing job.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | We had already booked a photographer, however she had to pull out (with plenty of notice) as she was expecting. She sent us a list of recommendations for available photographers. After looking at everyone on the list Charlotte’s style was our favourite. Bright and natural, not posed or cheesy. She was an absolute pleasure to have there, and has given us some really beautiful memories from the day. She made us feel very comfortable and at ease, and loads of people asked about her and commented on how great she had been.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | The food was our primary concern to begin with. We couldn’t afford to put on a gourmet 5 course dinner, and didn’t want a mediocre hotel ‘wedding menu b’ type affair, so we just decided to choose food and drink that we both liked, and that we thought others would to. We chose our canapés and came up with our welcome drink, “Em-matt-inis”, followed by a barbecue serving smoked beef brisket, ribs, jerk chicken and locally caught mackerel. Everyone loved the barbecue and went back for seconds (because everyone loves a BBQ!)

One of the suppliers I use at work kindly gifted us some New Forest strawberries which we served with Dorset clotted cream, and Matt’s homemade shortbread and tiffin which was a real winner – as I didn’t get a slice! The village hall setting and beautiful weather was just so perfect for the food we chose – looking back it was quite a big gamble!

We also put out a board of our favourite cheeses, with some homemade rhubarb chutney.

We got our wine from Majestic in Poole, who were very helpful and it was a tough job trying all those different wines! We settled on Romeo + Juliet Prosecco, Vina Eguia Rioja Reserva and Sauvion Chenin Blanc which went great with the BBQ.

As it was a village hall wedding in Spring it seemed appropriate to keep the décor quite rustic. I started looking for ideas of what we could do fairly cheaply and easily. The hall was a bit of a blank canvas, but was light and airy with big windows looking out to the surrounding fields. I’m not a huge fan of bunting, so opted for coloured paper lanterns on festoon lighting to hang from the ceiling. I chose sage green, lemon yellow and robin egg lanterns as they complemented the room.

I bought hessian runners off Amazon which I cut to size. I collected all the chipped water jugs from the hotel I work at, plus a couple of charity shop finds to use for flowers. Matt made jars of BBQ Rub for our favours and we decorated jam jars with string and cotton lace for candle holders. Things got even more crafty after a trip to Hobbycraft and I painted signs, the table plan and a giant scrabble set!

My Sister and Brother in Law set up a couple of games of Kubb (you throw bits of wood at other bits of wood!) as well as boules. The weather was perfectly sunny and it was so nice seeing people having fun – just what we wanted.

Included in the hire was use of the tables and chairs, and they provided table cloths. I decided to hire Chiavari Limewash Chairs, which really lightened the room as the Village Hall’s were a bit ‘officey’ and I’m not a big fan of chair covers. They were quite an expense but I was glad that we went for them.

We spent a few hours setting up the tables, laying out the chairs, hanging lanterns etc. It was quite a lot of work, but was worth it. All the different bits and pieces came together on the day and it looked just as I had pictured in my head.

THE HONEYMOON | We spent 11 nights in the Puglia region in Italy. We spent two nights in a little retreat in the countryside called ‘Masseria Cervarolo’, eating food using their home grown produce and drinking and lounging by the pool.

We spent 7 nights self catering. This might not be everyone’s idea of a typical honeymoon but it was lovely just going to the markets and buying great Italian produce and cooking together. We had fresh pasta and barbecued pork from the barbecue most nights and sat watching the sun go down, drinking wine and playing cards! In the day time we drove out to the surrounding towns and villages exploring the area.

The last 2 nights we spent in the 5* ‘La Sommita’ overlooking the city of Ostuni. This was where we really felt pampered; The restaurant had a Michelin star and there were incredible views from the little garden and terrace. There were so many great little boutique shops and cafes/bars. We probably ate our body weight in tomatoes, burrata and mozzerella!

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Emma: Seeing Matt all suited up, looking as nervous as I did! The train journey and how nice it turned out to be. Sitting with friends outside having a glass of wine and then later a dance!

Matt: Greeting people at the Town Hall and trying to stay cool! When I saw Emma walking down the aisle. Seeing friends and family enjoying themselves playing the lawn games.

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | DIY can save money, but perhaps not as much as you think, it’s more about personalising things and you don’t necessarily need to make things to do that! Be honest with yourself: If you don’t work well under pressure, or don’t have the time/skills to do it then look for an alternative. Even though our families helped us for a few hours the day before, me and Matt were still running errands into the evening. It was quite stressful, but we both strive in those situations and work well as a team.

If you’re keeping to a budget like we were really think about what is important to you, and what will actually make a difference to the day – and I mean that in relation to DIY projects or extra details. If you are really worried about how your hair or make up will look then spend money on that – I wasn’t too fussed about that which is why we spent money on posh cheeses and good wine!

Don’t skimp on the photographer! We were tempted to in the very beginning and are now so glad we didn’t even though it was our biggest expenditure after catering!

Most importantly, enjoy the day! Don’t bog yourself down with details!! Try and get a few minutes just the two of you.

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photography | Charlotte Razzell Photography *WWW wedding directory member*

Florist |  Victoria @ Bloom in Swanage 01929 526196

Music |  Wild Nights Duo booked via Function Central

Catering | Julian Wood – Country Foods Catering

Lighting & Fire Pit | Camelot Marquees

 

Simply beautiful.

Matthew and Emma, thank you both so much for sharing your super sweet nuptials with us xo Lou

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Gold Sequin Outdoor Humanist Botanical Gardens Wedding]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=178639 2016-09-15T12:29:54Z 2016-09-27T06:00:41Z Gold Sequin Outdoor Humanist Wedding http://www.emmahillierphotography.com/

 

Sparkle heaven. I am definitely a magpie and so when I clapped eyes on this sequin filled affair I was smitten.

WWW readers Claire and Paul were married on the 5th May 2016, on the day of their anniversary, in an outdoor humanist wedding at Ness Gardens. They then headed to Mere Brook House in the Wirral for their stylish reception, which was decorated perfectly. With a relaxed and personal celebration in mind Claire and Paul opted for rustic touches including, log slices, hessian, sequins and blooms galore.

Now let’s talk about the stunning outfits. Claire looked effortlessly radiant in her sweetheart Ellis Bridals gown with sweet Charlotte Mills heart heels. Paul was very dapper indeed in a grey suit and floral tie, which really was a great combination. Then there were the bridesmaids who wore head to toe gold sequin gowns, lucky ladies, they looked stunning.

Thanks so very much to Emma Hillier Photography for sharing these delightful shots.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | Paul proposed on our 5th Anniversary trip in 2014 to Barcelona (we’d spent our first holiday together there in 2009). He proposed in a beautiful little courtyard, Plaça Sant Iu, where we had sat 5 years earlier while he taught me bits of Spanish, although he very nearly forgot how to find it! After rummaging in his rucksack for a while (he’d hidden the ring in a sock in his bag) he, not too smoothly, slid onto one knee. It’s fair to say I was shocked, so with my hand to my face I said “nooooo!!…. I mean YES!!!” I couldn’t tell you what the people around us thought of it as we were both completely lost in the moment.

THE VISION | Straight away we knew what date we wanted and where we wanted it. Having been together for 5 years we’d had casual chats about marriage and we’d always agreed on an outdoor wedding and as we went ‘Facebook Official’ on May 5th we thought that would be the perfect date for a spring / summer wedding. We wanted a relaxed, personal wedding with just those closest to us.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | I attended a few (lots) of wedding fayres, from big ones to small ones. The favourites being vintage wedding fayres that I visited in Chester and Liverpool. Attending these gave me the ideas for my favours (macarons) and flowers that I liked (wild flowers, looking like they were ‘just picked’). Much to Paul’s annoyance I spent A LOT of money on bridal magazines too.

We set our hearts on Ness Gardens and visited on the 4th May the year before to make sure that was what we wanted, from then there was no doubt. I planned all the fun stuff and decorations and left Paul to the administrative duties and finding a band.

THE VENUE | The humanist ceremony took place at Ness Botanical Gardens with the wedding breakfast and evening being held at Mere Brook House. The ceremony was at a little rock garden with a wooden hut overlooked by a bridge over a pond and, as it was the beginning of May, we were surrounded by snowdrops and bluebells.

Mere Brook House is an Edwardian country house set in beautiful grounds with plenty of wild flowers in the grounds. With a small courtyard inside and small pond to the front. It was decorated in true country house style with rustic mis-matched furniture which gave a real homely warmth. The food was incredible from the first to the (forced) last bite. We’d visited a few weeks earlier for a canapé tasting session and painstakingly decided on the 5 to serve. The meal was one of the best roast dinners we’ve ever had. All locally sourced and cooked to perfection… and there was the 2nd helping before dessert. In the evening they served a barbecue, again with locally sourced meats, that couldn’t be beaten. Along with some of our family we stayed over in the beautiful Honeymoon Suite.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | My dress was by Ellis Bridals. A tulle and satin ball gown cut. Layered tulle with sequins to give a little bit of sparkle if the light hit it. The bodice was sweetheart neckline embroidered with beads and precious stones.

My bracelet and earrings were Jon Richards.

My shoes I fell in love with as soon as I saw them and I knew I had to have them! They were by Charlotte Mills, ‘Andrea’ style with a block gold glitter heel and gold heart shoe clip. On the bottom of the shoe was the rhyme ‘something old, something new and a silver sixpence in her shoe’

FINDING THE DRESS | My bridal party and I visited quite a few dress shops about 5 or 6 before visiting Tilly Anna’s in Farndon. I didn’t want to try anything on as was having an ‘off’ day but was forced into trying it on by my maid of honour and immediately fell in love. Even my mum and maid of honour (who had shown themselves to be very hard to please!) burst into tears upon seeing it!

GROOM’S ATTIRE | Paul isn’t a top and tails or morning suit kind of guy. We’d decided early on that he would go and buy a suit, probably a 3 piece. He bought a light grey 3 piece from Marks and Spencer’s. A plain white shirt and a cotton tie in a gorgeous lilac and green floral pattern from Frederick Thomas and tan brogues from Dune, which were my only demand. He wore personalised cufflinks (a wedding present from me) with the map co-ordinates of Plaça Sant Iu and a local place where we first said I love you. Paul’s ring was from Justin Duance – and contained the wood of an ash tree.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | At Ness gardens we had a harpist (Nerys Hewitt) play for guests first and then Nerys played ‘Can’t help falling in love’ by Elvis during the bride’s entrance and for the couple exit she played Pachelbel canon in d.

We had 3 readings from each of our bridesmaids. Natalie read a poem called ‘The Promise’ by Eileen Rafter, Jordyn read and anonymous poem called ‘Maybe’ and Nicole read ‘Foxtrot from a play’ by W H Auden.

We selected each poem because we felt it meant something to us, and what we loved. We asked the guests to repeat an Irish blessing after our Celebrant Maxine.

For the evening dances we hired a band called the Jack Rabbits who were incredible. First up was Claire and her Dad who danced to ‘You’re my Best Friend’ by Queen. Then it was time for the First Dance, we wanted something a bit more ‘us’ than your regular “slowy” and as we’re quite fond of dancing round the living room we went for one we’ve danced to many times; “You Make My Dreams Come True” by Hall & Oates. The band had learned it from scratch and really came up trumps! I think it surprised a few people but it went down very well. Paul also surprised me a little later on with another favourite of ours “I Need My Girl” by The National which he’d organised in secret with the band and Sarah from Mere Brook to make sure everyone was in the right place at the right time.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 3 bridesmaids. Natalie, my maid of honour and best friend, my cousin Jordyn who I grew up with and Nicole, Paul’s niece. They chose their own style of dress from the range of gold sequined Sorella Vita Modern Metallic range. Jordyn and Nicole both chose the floor length boat-neck dress with cowl back which definitely fitted in with my vintage theme and Natalie chose a strappy floor length version with a blouson bodice.

THE FLOWERS | I specifically wanted a non structured bouquet, almost ‘just picked’, but in colours like lilac and sage. We went with a local florist called Pure Floral Design, in Brimstage. I met up with them a few times to discuss what I would like and they mocked up a few designs while I was there.

The bridal bouquet consisted of lilac roses, lisianthus, lavender and gypsophila to name a few. The bridesmaids had smaller bouquets of similar but without the roses.

Button holes and corsage wristlets also tied in. All bouquets were then used for table centrepieces.

THE CAKE | Our cake was made by Sue Gates from Bella’s Cake Pantry. Her work is amazing and the detail is fabulous. She made us (following a consultation) a three tier cake, each tier a different flavour, red velvet, Victoria sponge and lemon. The cake was decorated with a ruffled base, icing flowers and a gold sequinned (edible!) top tier.

For our favours we went for macarons from The Little Macaron Shop in Waterloo, Liverpool. We went for three flavours; salted caramel, violet and Matcha green tea and white chocolate. We packaged them ourselves (we ordered a couple too many as our reward) and finished them with mixed ribbons to tie on our home stamped labels. Apart from those Natalie and I had at Ladurée in Paris, they were the best macarons I’ve ever tasted!

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Emma Hillier was our fabulous photographer! Loved her work from the minute I saw it and knew we had to book her. She put us at ease with a pre wedding photo shoot which helped to put my photo shy husband at ease! On the day Emma was as fabulous as we thought, capturing amazing photographs! Even taking time to capture a few photos of our 5 week old niece as well. It was most definitely like having a friend at the wedding there with all of our guests commenting on how lovely she was. We had a few sneak peaks of a few shots before went on our honeymoon and then came back to the finished package with which we couldn’t have been happier. She really captured the feel of our wedding, the relaxed, close, fun vibe that we’d always hoped for. As well the incredible, fairytale-esque shots at Ness she blew us away with some really beautiful, natural pictures.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Due to the nature of our reception venue being an Edwardian country house we didn’t decorate too much because we wanted the character to speak for itself. We kept the details and décor rustic with a hint of sparkle/glamour. I love candles so there were a lot of tea lights/candles dotted along the hessian runners down each table. Differing in size and colour, some gold sequinned and some on log slices. For the cake table I touched on the sequins again and covered it in a gold sequinned cloth. Each chair was tied with a hessian bow by the bridal party the night before (hessian is harder to tie than I thought!)

I had made our seating plan out of an old ladder that Paul had lovingly sanded down over 3 days!! The seating plan was strung up with lilac baker’s twine and fairy lights twisted up around the ladder.

I wrote out each name on small chalkboard in white and gold chalk pen for name places (plenty of which went home with guests at the end of the night!)

We had an old suitcase on our entrance table with a card sign for guests to place cards and gifts along with our guest book and again candles!

For a little bit of fun we had a sign made for the dance floor stating the ‘rules’ such as ‘dance offs should take place where appropriate and often’, ‘lunges are law’ and ‘putting a tie around one’s head is encouraged’. Most of which were obeyed!!

THE HONEYMOON | We had no preconceived ideas of where to have our honeymoon, we just wanted it to be somewhere a little out of the ordinary so, after looking at a few options, we settled on the Sensimar Kalamota Island Resort on the island of Koločep, just outside Dubrovnik. We decided to wait until he end of May as the weather was supposedly better then, and it really was the right move! The island was beautiful, practically untouched, life went at 2 mph and it was perfect for us after the hectic build up to the wedding. The hotel we couldn’t fault and the Mojito bar kept us mingling with the other guests every night. We did the Game of Thrones tour in Dubrovnik, stopping off at various sites used in the filming of what is one of our favourite programmes, including the chance to sit on a replica of the Iron Throne and film our own version of the ‘Walk of Shame’. Our tour guide, organised through the hotel, was a young local guy with a degree in history who had worked as an extra and a runner on the show so really knew his stuff. We also went into Dubrovnik one evening to enjoy a romantic meal for just the two of us. The only problem we had with Dubrovnik was that we didn’t get the chance to see enough of the beautiful city. We came back with far too many photos to share (and some on the local nudist beach we couldn’t!) and more than enough fantastic memories to keep with us forever.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | The whole day was just unforgettable, we were so lucky with the weather having been forecast ‘wintry showers’ only a week or so earlier but the sun shone all day which only disappointed our photographer as the sun reflected a little too much off Paul’s bald head. The image of Emma getting excited whenever a cloud passed… and then swearing when it cleared… will always make us laugh! The speeches were fantastic, although the Best Man’s speech could well have been ‘cutting it fine’ and the food at Mere Brook, especially the second helpings, will go down in history! One of our favourite sights was that of Paul’s 93 year old grandad adhering to our dance floor rules and dancing with his tie around his head!

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Do it your way! There are so many ‘should do’ ways of getting married but, especially with the help of Maxine, our humanist celebrant, we found out that we can make it as personal to us as we wanted, even if it did raise an eyebrow or two, after all it was our big day! So I’d definitely recommend looking down that avenue if, like us, you’re not particularly religious.

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photography | Emma Hillier Photography

Brides Dress | Ellis Bridal at Tilly-Anna’s

Bride’s Shoes | Charlotte Mills

Bridesmaids’ Dresses | Sorella Vita at Tilly-Anna’s

Brides hair piece | No1 Jenny Packham @ Debenhams

Groom’s Suit | Marks & Spencer

Tie | Frederick Thomas

Groom’s shoes | Dune

Cufflinks | Sally Clay

Rings | Brides rings both Chisolm Hunter

Grooms ring | Justin Duance

Make Up | Emma Lampkin Makeup

Hair | Hair by Carol Ellis Thompson

Flowers & some décor  | Pure Floral Design

Cars | Chase the Sun

Celebrant | Maxine Beech

Harpist | Nerys Hewitt

Ceremony Venue | Jen Lemon at Ness Gardens

Reception Venue | Mere Brook House

Macarons | The Little Macaron Shop

Cake | Sue Gates at Bellas Cake Pantry

Band | The Jack Rabbits

Table cloth, chair covers & ties, & suitcase | Sweetpea & Ivy

Honeymoon | Sensimar Kalamota Island Resort

 

Oh so pretty.

Thanks so much to Claire and Paul for sharing their wonderful wedding story today xo Lou

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Stunning Documentary Wedding Photography by Benjamin Toms]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=180042 2016-09-22T13:19:55Z 2016-09-26T13:00:16Z Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

Kent Wedding Photographer, Benjamin Toms is here today to share all about his brilliant photography services for brides and grooms. There is something so special about Benjamin’s images. His candid documentary style creates such drama in his photographs. He aims to blend into your wedding day to capture everything you don’t see and of course those special portraits of you both too. Memories caught in time to last forever.

Let’s take a look at Benjamin’s breathtaking portfolio and find out where his talent for photography originated.

 

Hi Benjamin, could you firstly tell WWW readers a little bit about you?

 

I am Benjamin Toms, I am a documentary wedding photographer who lives in Kent with my wife Cassandra, 14 month old daughter Lyla our black lab Byron and 2 tabby cats. I am one of those lucky people in life who makes a living from something that they love doing – taking photos. Even though I’m a Kent based photographer I love that my job takes me to all corners of the UK and destination weddings are right up my street too.

 

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What do you love and dislike about your job?

 

I love, meeting amazing people, going to beautiful places and getting to document one of the best days of my clients lives. Also the fact that no two weddings are ever the same.

 

I dislike the number of sales calls that I receive on a weekly basis trying to sell me advertising space or telling me they could get me onto page one on google. I wish they would check as I’m already there after years of hard work.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UKBenjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

How did you get into the wedding industry?

 

I have always loved photography. Even as a child I spent hours in my darkroom. I continued my love of photography when I travelled the world. This was before digital photography really took off so I would carry lead bags with hundreds of films around with me and always be afraid that the airport security would wipe my images. I decided to take the risk and leave my job in travel in 2009, it was a pretty depressing time to be selling holidays in the height of the recession so I thought I had nothing to loose. I was lucky that my wife supported me in this. It was actually my wife’s boss that had asked me to shoot her wedding back in 2006 that gave me a taste for wedding photography. The wedding industry is an amazing place to work and I am guaranteed that no 2 days will ever be the same which I love.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UKBenjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

Tell us about your typical working day.

 

The joy of my job is that there isn’t a typical day. Every wedding is so so different and I think that it is really important that I spend time getting to know my clients so I can do their wedding justice. A common misconception is that the photographer rocks up on the day takes the photos and that is it. In reality it is much much more than that. Some of my clients opt for a pre-wed shoot, another great way to get to know each other, and it’s great for those couples who are a bit nervous in front of the camera. My wedding collections don’t have any time limitations. My day typically starts a couple of hours before the ceremony with bridal prep, this is one of my favourite times of the day to capture, there is so much emotion and excitement.

 

After the ceremony I always recommend couples allow about two hours before their wedding breakfast as this gives me time to do the group shots and get plenty of candid shots of all the wedding guests. It also ensures that I get some great shots of your wedding breakfast room before it’s over run by guests. During this time we’ll also make sure that we get some time to do your bridal portraits, don’t worry I won’t take you away from your guests for too long. But it’s good to factor in a nice amount of time so we can get a great selection of shots for you. I will stay as long as you want me too, as a standard I usually stay an hour or two after the first dance. I have been known to have 18 hour days on the wedding day. On days I’m not shooting it will be replying to emails, working on SEO for my website, editing, client meetings or daddy day care.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UKBenjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

If you could choose another role in the wedding industry what would it be?

 

A caterer in an old Citeron van making wood fired pizzas, I reckon that would be pretty cool. I have a pizza oven in my back garden and have gained myself quite a following from my friends.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UKBenjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

What do you aim to achieve for your clients?

 

To surpass their expectations and give them memories which can be passed down through generations.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UKBenjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

What style is your work? How would you describe your style in three words?

 

Documentary, unobtrusive, relaxed.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

Could you tell us some information about your packages/prices?

 

My prices start from £1800 for my digital collection for unlimited coverage. I’m also happy to tailor packages to meet my clients needs.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

Do you have any tips for couples in selecting their wedding photographer?

 

I honestly believe that wedding photos are so important, especially for the future generations. So when deciding on a photographer choose someone whose work really resonates with you. Also make sure to meet with them as they will be a big part of your day and you all want to make sure you are on the same page and will get along.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

Are you seeing any trends for the year ahead?

 

I love a beer so I’m hoping that a lot more people will have craft beers at their weddings.

There has been an increase in bookings from Instagram.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

Can you give us a teaser about what you are working on now?

 

Editing, editing, editing it has been a busy summer. I’ll be working on a re brand and a new website over the winter months.

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

How can we get in touch with you?

 

07881912624 or info@benjamintomsphotography.co.uk

 

F O L L O W

 

Facebook | Instagram

 

Just incredible. Every single image is like a work of art. Thank you Benjamin for sharing all about your wedding photography services today xo Lou

 

Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK Benjamin Toms Photography Wedding Documentary UK

 

*This is a sponsored post*

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Stylish Floral Barn Wedding]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=178578 2016-09-15T12:27:25Z 2016-09-26T06:00:44Z Stylish Floral Barn Wedding http://www.sarareeve.com/

 

What a way to start the week. We’re getting all pretty and rustic today with this fabulous hand crafted barn wedding.

WWW readers Katie and James got hitched on the 16th April 2016 and held their reception at Pangdean Old Barn in Sussex. They envisioned a relaxed atmosphere for their celebrations and as you will see from the images, everyone had a right roaring time. The delicate pale pinks used in the bridesmaid frocks and Spring blooms were an utter delight. Not to mention the reception space, the barn looked magical festooned in fairy lights and bunting.

Katie looked the chic boho bride in Sara by Limor Rosen; a detailed top and swishy skirt combo. The gents meanwhile looked very handsome in their Topman ensembles with wool waistcoasts. Such a stylish couple.

Thanks so very much to Sara Reeve for sharing these exquisite images.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | Coincidentally it was one year ago to the day of the wedding. We were heading off to Sri Lanka on a holiday of a lifetime, and James had popped the ring box on a silver platter in the suitcase! At first, I thought I wasn’t supposed to have found it, and quickly closed the suitcase, but James came up the stairs with a glass of champagne and asked the big question!

THE VISION | We wanted a relaxed wedding, where the guests were the main focus, and we knew we wanted to either be in London where we live, or in Brighton where are originally both from.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | James was in charge of the spreadsheet (which had the budget/cost tracker/table plans etc), and I was in charge of the arts & crafts – it was a fun planning process

BUDGET | All we will say is that it’s hard to stick to your original budget.

THE VENUE | Pangdean Barn, near Brighton.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Sara by Limor Rosen from Luella’s Bridal in Wimbledon. Shoes from Rachel Simpson.

FINDING THE DRESS | Probably my favourite part of it all! Was very daunting at first, but the more different styles you try on, you can slowly narrow down what you feel comfortable in. I narrowed it down to two very different dresses, and in the end went with the most comfortable one, and I don’t regret it!

GROOM’S ATTIRE | James and the ushers bought their suits from Topshop, which worked perfectly; and the ties can from Swagger & Swoon. I bought James a pocket watch for his wedding morning gift, which ended up complimenting the suit perfectly. James went for a slightly different material for his waistcoat, and they all had the same ties.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | James’ cousin played the organ beautifully, and we were lucky enough to have a family friend marry us – he came all of the way from his home Parish in Barbados!

We had a few Bible readings, and psalms, and then a reading called ‘I Promise You’ which we found on Pinterest, which we really liked.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 5 lovely bridesmaids, and wanted to find a dress that would suit them all, and that they could change if they wanted. I initially thought of having different colours, but ended up going for the same colour! I loved the multi-way dresses, and found a lovely lady on Facebook, that I would highly recommend, Victoria Lou.

THE FLOWERS | We had a lovely local lady called Bettie Rose do the flowers for the wedding, including the bouquets and the table jars. We went for a relaxed feel of muted colours, including some eucalyptus which I loved. My Mum collected 100’s of jars (forcing my Dad to eat countless jars of jam and pickled gherkins!), and we decorated them with ribbons and lace.

THE CAKE | We didn’t want to just have one cake, so we went for 10! Another wonderful local supplier, Baked Bliss, in Brighton, created a selection of tray bakes and cakes, and we displayed them all together on one table, and they looked incredible, and delicious.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | We were lucky enough that the wonderful photographer who my friend Valerie had at her wedding 5 years previously was free, so we jumped at the chance. She was incredible, and created the exact relaxed, non-posed feeling that we were after.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | James created some fantastic large letters (a J and a K) out of wood, that we had hanging from the barn hay bales (they ended up being the perfect focal point for the dinner!), and my Mum made metres and metres of gorgeous white bunting. The rest of the bits were all hand-made, by ourselves, or some of our special friends!

THE HONEYMOON | Was a trip in a lifetime to Costa Rica, we felt so lucky to be able to go somewhere where we’ve always wanted to go. The climate, animals and setting was incredible.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Walking down the aisle was my favourite bit, but also walking through to dinner, past of our our loved ones smiling and cheering was very special.

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Enjoy every minute of the day itself. It really does fly by…

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photographer | Sara Reeve

Grooms Ties | Swagger and Swoon

Bridesmaid dresses | Victoria Lou

Venue | Pangdean

Florist | Bettie Rose

Dress shop | Luellas

Bride shoes | Rachel Simpson Shoes

 

WOW.

Thank you Katie and James for sharing your incredible wedding story today, gorgeous xo Lou

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Wild Opulence Autumn Wedding Ideas]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=180009 2016-09-22T12:27:03Z 2016-09-25T07:00:35Z Wild Opulence Autumn Wedding Ideas http://www.storyweddingphotography.co.uk/

 

Cosy up underneath your fave knitted blanked, stoke up the fire and pour yourself a warm beverage whilst you browse these inspirational images today.

These autumn wedding ideas are so unique and oh so whimsical. Perfect for these colour filled pages then right? YES.

Once you clap your eyes on the dreamy seasonal large bouquet and exquisite floral burgundy stationery you’ll be booking up your autumn wedding date. Not to mention the ethereal bridal look rocked by model Lili, hello plaits and berry lips. The perfect calligraphy and quirky antique trinkets really bring together the flower adorned table scape, it looks amazing.

Thanks so much to Story Wedding Photography for showcasing these incredible shots with us.

 

“Wild Opulence is an autumn themed styled shoot, featuring gem coloured florals, taxidermy and an ethereal bride.

In contrast to the girlishness of summer’s pinks and pastels we wanted to create a darker, moodier shoot to reflect the changing seasons. In the grand setting of Belair House – a Georgian mansion in Dulwich, Jennifer of Jennifer Pinder flowers and stylist Jade of On A Day Like This got together to concoct a rich elaborate banqueting table fit for Royalty.

Aged urns spilled with seasonal chocolate cosmos, snapdragons, zinnia, and clematis – some foraged from Jennifer’s own garden. Stuffed birds sat alongside tall candlesticks, quails eggs and berries. Engraved glasses, trinkets and decorative cutlery from Chic et Tralala gave an eclectic and unique feel – all on a bed of bold blue silk by Pom Pom Blossom.

Above the top table hung a hand scribed romantic message in a Gothic frame by calligrapher Kayleigh Tarrant, who also created names places with a personal touch.

An elegant marbled 3 tiered wedding cake courtesy of Sugared Saffron sat in a bed of foliage complete with little white mouse!

Floral stationery by Emily and Jo complimented all the autumnal hues, and old fashioned feel.

In contrast to the organic intensity of our table setting, we chose braids and an understated elegant silk gown from Rock the Frock for our model Lili. Her flame red hair and alabaster skin something of pre-Raphaelite goddess, enhanced by the smoky autumnal hues used by make up artist Laura Naiah.”

 

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CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photography | Story Wedding Photography

Styling | On A Day Like This

Flowers | Jennifer Pinder Floral Styling

Fabrics and Ribbons | Pom Pom Blossom

Props | Chic Et Tralala

Calligraphy | Kayleigh Tarrant

Stationery | Emily&Jo

Venue | Belair House

Model | Lili Telford

Hair and Make up | Laura Naish

Dress | Rock the Frock

Cake | Sugared Saffron

 

Oh WOW.

Thanks so much to the super talented team above for sharing the results on WWW xo Lou

 

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Abby Stiefel http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/ <![CDATA[Breathtaking Intimate Mykonos Destination Wedding]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=178526 2016-09-15T10:19:12Z 2016-09-24T07:00:05Z Breathtaking Intimate Mykonos Destination Wedding http://www.annapumerphotography.com/

 

Although I can’t take you on an actual holiday this Saturday morning, you can easily de-stress and unwind while looking at Julie and Dave’s Mediterranean wedding day, which was held on the 19th of May 2016.

As a compromise between Dave’s more traditional ways and Julie’s modern views, they decided to have a destination wedding that would feel more like a relaxing and fun holiday for them and their close family and friends. So, off they went to the Greek island of Mykonos for five days of sunshine, ocean views and of course, a mighty big celebration.

My favourite aspect of their day was the way they extended the revelry by having cocktails with their guests before the ‘I-dos’. Not only would this have been exciting, but then they all walked to the sunset-soaked ceremony location (a picturesque lighthouse, no less) together as a group. Love this idea!

The beautiful photos were taken by one of our faves here at WWW and Supplier Love member, Anna Pumer Photography. Thank you so much for sharing these delightful shots with us, Anna.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | Traditionalist Dave wanted the proposal to have meaningful significance and settled on Boston as the ideal destination. We’re American and had lived there prior to London. It is where we first became a couple and had made most of our adulthood friends. During our visit, the plan was to get Julie to walk together through Boston Common where we first met in a running club, and propose there while a willing accomplice grabbed some paparazzi shots from behind nearby trees. Only minutes before Dave dropped to one knee, it almost hit a snag when some strangers chatted up the secret photographer. But all ended well with Julie saying “Yes!” After such a big occasion, the natural next thing to do was have an ice cream to celebrate (Coffee Oreo to be exact). Serendipitously, along the way we passed a couple taking wedding photos and the song “Dear Future Husband” was playing at the ice cream shop when we arrived (not part of the plan despite how much Dave wishes he could claim credit!). The final touch was a surprise gathering of some of our closest friends for a celebratory drink at Top of the Hub, overlooking the city.

THE VISION | Although Dave pines for tradition, Julie, on the other hand, runs away from anything that falls under the heading of: “because that’s the way it’s supposed to be done” – wedding included. So after much debate, we agreed on an intimate, relaxed destination wedding that was meant to feel more like a vacation for all rather than a wedding. We’d both wanted to go to Greece and thought, “Well this is as good a time as any!” So we hosted 30 close friends and family members in Mykonos for 5 days; it was incredible and touching to watch people from different parts of our lives and different parts of the world bond and relax together during that week.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | Julie’s good friend Siobhan had gotten married the year before and within 5 minutes of our engagement announcement, Julie had Excel templates and Pins in her inbox from her, ready to go! We’re both natural planners, so between Excel, Pinterest, and the Moleskine Wedding Planner, Julie was invincible! However, her ambitions were quickly tempered when she realised that she’d need to adjust her type-A tendencies to island time. The Greeks weren’t exactly on board with planning every detail 10 months in advance. We quickly adapted to doing everything we could do, then letting many of the day-of details ride until the last minute.

BUDGET | Since we wanted this to be an experience and gift to our loved ones, we spent a majority of our budget on villas for our guests for the week. Seeing their reaction and gratitude to the beautiful accommodations was just what we were hoping for – it was wonderful! Our spending on everything else was quite disciplined; it was a major DIY affair. Our friends are unbelievably talented, and they pitched in with the flowers, handmade decorations, and music. It was such a fun chance to show off everyone’s secret skills.

THE VENUE | The venue(s!) are places that we still dream about and cannot wait to revisit – hopefully sometime soon and one day with our future kiddos. We started with G&Ts in the breathtaking Villa Melmastia. Consuming celebratory drinks before the ceremony was a stretch for live-by-the-rules-Dave ;) but Julie insisted. Then, the crowd informally proceeded on foot to Armenistis lighthouse, our favourite spot on the island; this is where we had the ceremony and watched the sunset together. Finally, everyone caravanned to the dinner and dance party at Zinas Villas.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Even though Julie loves shopping almost as much as coffee and chocolate, she could not wrap her head around paying four digits for a dress that she would (presumably!) wear once. To get around this – and because she likes to be different – she had dreamed up wearing a non-white dress that would be reusable. Brilliant! But Dave the traditionalist had visions of white on the special day, so she complied and found a beautiful and simple white(!) wedding dress that had been “gently used.” It was the perfect compromise.

As for jewellery, she found the perfect pearl earrings online but realised that the link was out of date and they were no longer made. In an amazing twist of fate, it happened that a friend owned the same pair and was thrilled to share them. Also, she wore an heirloom gold bangle; there were plenty of something-borroweds that day! Lastly, the Grecian blue shoes were from J. Crew. She was torn if they were special enough, but they felt casual and natural.

FINDING THE DRESS | Dress shopping was one of the most fun and special weekends in Julie’s life. Siobhan (who once again was ready for the engagement) had insisted on a dress-shopping weekend somewhere between the friends’ two homes of Santa Monica and London. After a several-week debate of where to meet, Nashville kept popping up. After many hours of Instagram stalking, the shopping targets were The Dress Theory and its sister store for consigned dresses, LVD Bridal. For someone who originally had no interest in white dreamy dresses, Julie quickly adjusted. She loved every single dress in both boutiques, and the specialists were incredible; they know how to make a girl feel like the most beautiful person in the world. Another friend who was pregnant and wouldn’t make it to the wedding joined too. It was a perfect weekend of shopping, incredible food, and time by the pool.

GROOM’S ATTIRE | A custom-made navy blue suit from Cad & the Dandy was Dave’s Christmas present, and a close friend (same as the earring-provider – she was full of goodies!) bought Dave the perfect Grecian blue and white striped tie from designer Paul Smith.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | Julie’s former boss-turned-friend Annmarie read an excerpt from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. There was no plan for music at the outdoor ceremony; but while everyone was waiting for the ceremony to begin, Julie’s theatrical friend Emily (who also DJ’d the dance party) started an impromptu sing-along of “Be Our Guest” from Beauty & the Beast – Julie’s childhood favourite movie. It couldn’t have been more perfect; she was still doubled over laughing when the ceremony started.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | The guest list was so small that there were no bridesmaids; essentially all the females in attendance would’ve been in the bridal party. It’s a complete coincidence that everyone matches perfectly in every shade of blue!

THE FLOWERS | Sorry to disappoint but no formal flower appointments either! For the months preceding the wedding, we’d been saving clay La Fermière yogurt pots and brought them to Mykonos with us. The day before the wedding we found a local nursery and bought succulents and cacti and potted them in the pots and then scattered them around the reception site. There was also no bouquet plan, but our mutual friend Jess (who was also the officiant) insisted on a bouquet and just so happens that she worked in a florist shop during university. Voilà… talented friend to the rescue again!

THE CAKE | Julie met the unbelievably talented Beth at a yoga retreat the year before the engagement. After a week of incredible eating, she took her information just in case… Beth and her husband Zaid were really the stars of the week! They cooked one meal a day for the group to bond, including an out-of-this-world Mediterranean spread for the wedding meal and the cake. Non-conformist Julie didn’t want a cake but acquiesced when Dave agreed to an Oreo cake. But don’t try this at home (in the UK); four different friends all brought Oreos from the US to make sure that we had the authentic version, and it was so worth it. As for the outside… Dave has never let go of his childhood love for dinosaurs, so the T-Rex topper was a surprise to him when he saw the cake for the first time.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Anna Pumer of Anna Pumer Photography was a dream come true! We were apprehensive about having a photographer because we didn’t want anything to feel staged or unnatural. In addition, we went back and forth on a videographer. Julie had visions of watching the wedding video each anniversary, but this idea added to the apprehension. However, Anna suggested Leanne Perrins of Blooming Lovely Films, as they had previously worked together, had great chemistry, and swore that neither would feel intrusive. And she was right! Both slipped right into our set of friends, and we really just wanted to hang out with them all week! Everyone kept commenting about how much fun they were having; it made us so happy that everyone was relaxed and having a great time.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Just like the flowers, the decor was somewhat ad hoc and just trusted that it would all come together, since we had such a gorgeous backdrop. Along with the succulents, we’d bought fairy lights from Amazon, and that was pretty much it. The most amazing part is that we left our friends to do most of the decorating while we were getting ready. Dave’s friends put themselves in charge of moving furniture, and Julie’s friends arranged all the plants, set up the impromptu bar, etc.

THE HONEYMOON | We haven’t gone on one yet (although there’s not much to complain about; we take full advantage of living in Europe, so long weekend trips to amazing places abound!). But as soon as Julie’s done with grad school, we are taking a serious holiday.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | The absolute best part of the entire week was the ceremony. Every single thing was perfection. Miraculously, it stayed warm through sunset, was not windy on the cliff that evening, and all the little things that weren’t exactly on plan flowed into an effortless, gorgeous sequence of events. An important reason for this was our mutual friend Jess who officiated. She is just so dear to both of us and one of the few people who is equal part friend to both Dave and Julie (she and Dave were co-captains of the running club where we met). Throughout the whole ceremony we were laughing and crying, as she told her version of our love story; and she even found a flawless way to make it interactive with the guests who were huddled around us. She is an incredible human being and shared so much of herself with us during those 20 minutes and throughout the whole week.

Some of our favourite candid moments were watching the inflexible guys participate in a group yoga session, seeing so many guests unintentionally coordinate their outfits in Grecian blue and white, and a perfectly-timed execution of a group shot throwing confetti from party crackers!

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Be willing to compromise on small things if your partner really has his/her mind set on them. Chances are, it’s not worth starting an argument over and it will pay dividends seeing the smile on your partner’s face on the day of the ceremony.

Along those lines, Dave conceded that just because “it’s the way you do things” isn’t a good enough reason to do something a certain way. Choose to plan things a certain way because that’s how you want them to be done. It’s your wedding, and while making sure the guests have a good time, it’s ultimately you that will have the most vivid memories of all the little things so do what makes you happy.

Lastly, we found that finding ways to incorporate your guests into the ceremony and reception was very rewarding for both sides. When people ask, “What can I do to help?” take them up on it! It helps to reinforce the bond between the couple and the attendees, and for us, we liked that it took some of the attention away from us since neither of us like being the centre of attention.

 

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photographer | Anna Pumer Photography *WWW wedding directory member*

Venue | Villa Melmastia and Zinas Villas

Dress | Katie May from lvd Bridal

Suit | Cad & the Dandy

Catering and Cake | Beth’s Bakes

Film | Blooming Lovely Films

 

Julie and Dave, thank you for sharing your awesome ideas and romantic festivities with us. It looked like it was a heavenly five days with your nearest and dearest.

If photography and travelling are your thing, keep scrolling to find out about Anna Pumer’s upcoming workshop! Abby xx

Abby xx

 

*Anna Pumer is hosting an amazing photography workshop (Kick Ass Workshop) in the south of France for 3 full days from 11-13 October and is perfect for wedding photographers wanting to break away from the crowd, book their ideal couples and take super-fun photos. It also includes one to one portfolio review sessions and one or two epic styled shoots! (Plus there’s a heated pool and a hot tub in the woods!)*

 

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[The Bride Diaries. Louise’s Candy Coloured Beach Hut Engagement Shoot]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=179901 2016-09-21T13:09:40Z 2016-09-23T13:00:24Z WWW real bride Louise had her engagement shoot last month. It was just picture perfect, I loved hearing about their joint HAG do and the make up trial too. Enjoy these candy coloured summertime images courtesy of  Evolve Photography folks xo Lou

Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/

Images by Evolve Photography

 

I’m really excited to share some photos with you from our pre-wedding photoshoot with Evolve Photography! I was really nervous about how these would turn out, but Mark has done such an amazing job that I really can’t thank him enough.

 

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On possibly the hottest day of the year so far, Ed and I ventured down to Budleigh Salterton beach – one of our most favourite places. We both knew that if we were going to have photographs taken it needed to be somewhere that we loved and were comfortable with. I was also adamant that I wanted us to look like we were out on one of our usual strolls along the beach – nothing too formal… Without even having to mention this, I think Mark has achieved just that.

 

Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/ Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/

 

Actually, having these photographs taken has made me feel a lot more relaxed about the photos on the ‘big day’ itself. Mark explained to us that a pre-wedding photoshoot is not an imitation of how it will feel on the wedding day; this experience is far more intense as it is just you and the photographer. On the actual wedding the intensity will be punctuated by the guests and the happenings of the day. There are also other variables – I know exactly what I’m going to be wearing, I’ll know what my hair will be doing and what my make-up will be like. (Rather than stressing about which dress is most suitable for 35°C and whether my make-up will end up running halfway down my face and not even mentioning the awful sunburn that I’d got the previous day)!

 

Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/ Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/

 

Whilst we were having our shoot, a couple came up to us and enquired as to what it was we were doing exactly and whether it was for a magazine shoot (HA!). They just so happened to own one of the super cute ice cream coloured beach huts on the sea front and they offered it up to us to be used in some of the photographs!

 

Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/ Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/ Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/

 

I think this is my favourite one… I may have just got splashed by a surprisingly big wave! Plus Budleigh looks amazing in the background.

 

Real Bride UK Wedding Blog Engagement Shoot http://evolvephoto.co.uk/

 

Whilst we were down in Devon for our week long holiday, we also had time for a HAG do (amongst a couple of 20 mile bike rides)! I really wanted a HAG do (HEN + STAG) because Ed and I thought it would be amazing to have an opportunity to get the whole gang together for a celebration! Whilst most of them had met on previous occasions those that hadn’t now know each other for when the big day arrives. Organised by my chief bridesmaid and best men, we enjoyed an excellent night out in Exeter, complete with dinner and the standard bar crawl – commencing at the Old Fire House and finishing (inebriated) at Timepiece. So much love for these guys and massive thanks for an amazing night out!

 

HAG Do Party Wedding Blog UK

Image by Louise

 

I was also lucky enough to squeeze in a make-up trial at Seabrease in Sidmouth with Erin. Seabrease is amazing as you can sit and have treatments done whilst overlooking Sidmouth beach – I always leave feeling totally refreshed. Having known Erin for a few years now, I trust her and was really happy with the bridal look she created for me (even if the colour between my flawlessly made up face and my red raw décolletage was hysterical – issues that I hope not to have in the heart of winter)! It’s important to me that I don’t feel like I am going to a dance competition – I just want to look like me, but on a really good day!

In other news… How is it September already?! Where has this year gone?

Louise xx

 

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Louise Baltruschat Hollis <![CDATA[Beautiful Bicycle Country Marquee Wedding]]> http://whimsicalwonderlandweddings.com/?p=178441 2016-09-14T14:38:54Z 2016-09-23T06:00:26Z Beautiful Bicycle Country Marquee Wedding http://www.emmabphotography.com/

 

Oh me oh my. Demelza and Robert your sweet nuptials have totally stolen my heart today.

Demelza and Robert tied the knot on the 12th September 2015 at the village church followed by a marquee reception at Pexton Moor Farm, Dalby Forest in North Yorkshire. They both love mountain biking and the woods, so both of these elements made their way into the wedding for a truly personal feel. Bicycle illustrated stationery really set the tone and there was a bike seating plan and a bicycle adorned with blooms too. Rustic wooden touches gave a nod to the forest, with log slices used in the centrepieces, portraits in the trees and wild fern infused whimsical bouquets, which had real wow factor.

The style of the wedding party was impeccable. Let’s begin with Demelza’s stunning dress, she chose to wear Lilly Mae by Charlotte Balbier with a long dreamy veil. She looked amazing. The bridesmaids wore long dresses by Kelsey Rose, while the groomsmen chose grey Jeff Banks suits for a classic yet modern look.

Emma B Photography, many thanks for sharing these utterly beautiful photographs with us.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | During a lovely sunset on a clifftop with my dog.

THE VISION | To have a relaxed, woodland, country feel wedding with good food and a big party!

THE PLANNING PROCESS | Relaxed! We’re both massively into mountain biking and spend a lot of time in forests, so knew we wanted a venue which reflected this. We also regularly drive past this venue and always slow down to watch the sunsets, which are always amazing. I’d always wanted to marry in the church because I’ve lived in this village most of my life and my parents were also married here. I tried to keep things quiet so that family and friends would have some surprises on the day but towards the end we had lots of help from family and friends.

Our invitations were bespoke to us, designed by our friend, and hugely talented local artist, Sarah Westwood. Sarah designed two invitations which featured myself, Bobby, our beagle Lottie and our bikes, there was a day and a night invitation and her design formed the basis for many of our decorations and the overall wedding theme.

THE VENUE | All Saints Church, Brompton-By-Sawdon, than a marquee at Pexton Moor Farm, Dalby Forest near Pickering.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Dress – ‘Lilly Mae’ by Charlotte Balbier, from Diana at The Little Pearl Bridal Boutique in Pickering.

Veil – floor length, also from The Little Pearl.

Shoes – Rachel Simpson, from The Little Pearl Bridal Boutique.

FINDING THE DRESS | I didn’t have a clue what I wanted, other than I knew I didn’t want to be uncomfortable on the day! I went to a couple of shops before discovering The Little Pearl Bridal Boutique in Pickering, which had only very recently opened. Diana who owns the boutique was fantastic, she picked out several dresses, which she thought I should try and as soon as I put Lilly Mae on I knew it was the one. My friends and family who were there with me all loved it too! It suited everything; me, the venue, the relaxed feel we wanted, and it felt amazing on!

GROOM’S ATTIRE | The groomsmen all wore 3 piece grey suits from Jeff Banks with a deep purple tie.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | I walked down the aisle to one of my favourite pieces of music, which is by a band called M83. In Church we had an organist who played our three hymns; Amazing Grace, I Vow To Thee My Country, and Jerusalem. We had two readings; a serious one read by my mum (Hilary Triffitt) and a not so serious one read by Robert’s brother (Josh Robinson).

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | My adult bridesmaids wore floor length, Kelsey Rose dress in Sea Mist colour. Ruby my niece who was a flower girl wore a cream dress with a big bow from Next.

THE FLOWERS | We wanted relaxed, country flowers to go with our woodland theme, luckily I live nearby to an amazing florist, Jo Purdy from Hearts and Flowers. Jo listened to the kind of wedding we were planning and then went away and created various pieces.

Just before the wedding Jo held a workshop evening for myself and my bridal party where we actually created some the flowers for the wedding! Jo showed us what to do and we all made something for the day; including a huge flower display which went over the archway of the church, and some wicker hearts which we tied flowers and ribbon to and hung on the end of the pews in church. Whilst we were in the workshop Jo made a beautiful arrangement in a basket which went on the front of an old bicycle we had in the church and up at the marquee.

For the bouquets Jo used deep purple, creams and lots of wild greenery. I had the same colours for a headpiece which went under my veil in the back of my hair, and the bridesmaids had gypsophila in their hair. For the wedding party, Jo created buttonholes with a single cream rose, deep purple, light purple, greenery and a thistle, the ends were wrapped in twine and looked fantastic.

Jo also created a flower headband for Ruby my flower girl and a wooden wand decorated with flowers and ribbon for her to carry.

For our tables Jo gave us buckets of different flowers and greenery and we used these to create little table displays. The flowers really brought the woodland country feel to life!

THE CAKE | My amazingly talented mum made our cake. We didn’t particularly want a traditional cake so left it entirely up to my mum. The bottom tier was more traditional and included an icing model of my dog (Lottie the Beagle) and the top tier was a forest theme with handmade green trees, a bicycle and icing models of me and Robert! Mum also made a chocolate cake with chocolate dipped strawberries.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Fab photos courtesy of Emma Billsborough from Emma B Photography. Some of my fave photos from the day are when we went into the forestry in our wellies!

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Lots of wood pieces and bicycles!

The tables were named after some of our fave places that we had travelled together (Dalby, Vancouver, San Francisco, New Zealand etc.) each table centrepiece included a slim wooden log (which we cut, sanded and oiled ourselves), a slate place name and 2 of our photographs from that place, a helium balloon filled with confetti and 2 glass jars and a glass bottle. The glass jars and bottle were half covered in silver glitter and had hessian bows at the top; 1 jar contained sweets for the guests, paper straws and photobooth props, 1 jar had a scented candle and the glass bottle was filled with flowers.

We hung turquoise and purple lanterns from the roof in the marquee, plus lots of hessian bunting. We also made and displayed a banner with photos of me and Robert.

Table places were displayed using mini widen pegs on bike wheels, which were propped up on two large logs inside the marquee. The groomsmen even chopped the logs up themselves! One of my fave pieces was a huge log we found, the top of which was in a perfect heart shape, we filled the cracks with flowers and people used it to rest drinks on!

On arrival we had canapés and drinks outside whilst a local musician played acoustic guitar and sang. We also served a special cider cocktail which the best man brought with him from Somerset.

The reception food was from a local caterer, we opted for a joint of meat on each table which a selected guest had to carve for everyone, this went down really well! For the night time we had a hog roast, we also had an ice cream cart which was on an old fashioned bike!

The inside of the marquee came with fairy lights and my Uncle decorated the outside of the marquee and the road with lots of fairy lights, which looked amazing at night.

THE HONEYMOON | We went to New York City for a week.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Quite a few! I really enjoyed the days leading up to the wedding, we had friends and family helping us and we spent all day at the venue together, eating fish and chips on an evening!

Walking to the church from my house for the ceremony with my bridesmaids and dad, just dodging the rain!

The speeches were all brilliant and had everybody in stitches.

Being on the dancefloor and looking over to see a giant pile up of friends and family on the dancefloor with one of my bridesmaids on top with her dress hitched up!

During our first dance (Fatboy Slim, ‘Praise You’) when two huge confetti cannons went off all around us.

Having my two week old nephew at the wedding, he was born premature and we didn’t know if he would make it to the wedding!

Towards the end of the night standing on a chair on the dancefloor singing Take That ‘Never Forget’ at the top of my voice to everyone on the dancefloor below, everyone was singing it!

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Don’t stress about anything! Trust that everything you decided to do will be great because it will be!

If you’ve got the money hire a videographer

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photography | Emma B Photography

Reception Venue |  Jim and Wendy at Pexton Moor Farm, Dalby Forest

Dress |  Charlotte Balbier, ‘Lilly Mae’ from The Little Pearl Bridal Boutique in Pickering

Bridesmaids’ dresses | Kelsey Rose bought from Forevermore Bridal Shop in Selby

Hair | Jenny and Team at Sanctuary Hair & Beauty, Scarborough

Make-up | Beth Sample at Pure Skin and Beauty, Scarborough

Groom’s outfit |  Jeff Banks

Stationery |  Custom Designed by Sarah Westwood

Flowers | Jo Purdy, Hearts and Flowers

Catering | Sarah Readman at Nabs Nosh, Scarborough. Meat supplied by The Ginger Pig

Drink | Cropton Brewery and Harry Fry with Harry’s Cider Company (Somerset)

Entertainment |  Calum Marshall Music and Wired 4 Sound DJ, Scarborough

Transport |  Matthewsons, Snainton, North Yorkshire; approx. cost £250

 

Oh how lovely.

Thanks so much to Demelza and Robert for sharing their wonderful wedding story with us xo Lou

 

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