This wonderful wedding celebration is so rich, both in colour and happiness. A warm and cosy winter wedding held at Gaynes Park in Essex with a fabulous burgundy colour scheme.
Kate and Junjun were married on the 23rd February 2015 and hoped to create an intimate and personal day. They put a lot of love and creativity into their decorations, with many of the wonderful details having been crafted themselves. My favourite project of theirs has to be that gorgeous hessian and flower backdrop, it looked so stunning. Not to mention the florals which were just utterly glorious in an array of pinks, whites and reds.
Kate looked so elegant in an beaded gown, the boys wore navy suits and the bridesmaids donned coordinating long ASOS frocks. So very lovely.
Matt Penberthy, thank you so much for sharing these exquisite photographs with us.
THE PROPOSAL | 5th Year Anniversary, lunch at the Yacht Restaurant. Long walk to London Bridge Station to take a lift to the 72nd floor of The Shard.
We toured for a bit, to find ourselves looking through one of the windows and then a choir started singing from behind – K-Ci and Jojo All My Life. As I looked back they each had a rose in their hand and were actually singing to me. I then turned back to him, he was on one knee, he finished the song and ‘popped the question’ which I tearfully answered with a nod (I was speechless).
THE VISION | To make it intimate, personal, and as much about our guests than about ourselves.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | To create an email account accessible to both of us specifically for the wedding. We used this for making contacts with wedding venue organisers, other wedding suppliers and when purchasing wedding stuffs.
We then created a Pinterest account – which was very very very helpful – to gather ideas, mood boards and help established the theme for the wedding.
The aim for the venue was to find a wedding venue with an accessible Church around the area, as soon as we found this and found a suitable date that will allow for both venues to be available we booked our date.
We sent our ‘Save the Date’ Invitation around 6 months prior to the wedding – as we had family coming from abroad that needed much notice to book their plane tickets to come over.
Engagement photo shoot with our photographer Matt Penberthy – 4 months prior to the wedding – we used the photos from the engagement photo shoot for our wedding invitation from minted.com.
Few months prior to the wedding, we started buying little decoration items – such as laces, ribbons, candles, vases, etc.
DIY – name place cards, table menus, table numbers, seating plan.
BUDGET | We had no set budget, but only to be practical in any financial decision we are to make for the wedding. If there is a cheaper alternative where quality will not suffer, then we went for it. We also did a lot of DIYs not just because of budget but we really wanted to give that personal touch to our wedding.
THE VENUE | The aim was to find a venue that is within an accessible distance to a Church and also public transport.
Gaynes Park was the 2nd venue we visited in our hunt for a barn wedding venue. We visited a 3rd venue but none had the same impact as Gaynes Park. We just couldn’t get the venue out of our mind. It ticked all the boxes, such as accessibility, they have a relationship with a local Church 10 minutes’ drive from the venue, and they had accommodation available for our guests. The venue was just beautiful, simple, and elegant.
All Saints Theydon Church – real lovely, warm and welcoming Church. The Vicar was really accommodating and informative, he arranged for us to get our Certificate of Marriage and helped us in every way he can.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Dress – Berketex Bride Nottingham
Tiara – Berketex Bride
Veil – Berketex Bride
Shoes – Office J
Jewellery – Debenhams
FINDING THE DRESS | I decided to get my dress from Berketex Bride in Nottingham, where my parents are living at the moment. It was one of the only ways I can get my Mum involved. I wanted her inputs and opinions about the dress I was to wear for the day.
My heart was set for a vintage-y lacey type of dress, but upon trying, this did not feel right. The second option was a fish tail dress – which again, did not feel quite right when it was on. I never thought I would pick this dress, but it felt perfect when it was on, simple and elegant.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | The groom waited for Boxing Day Sale. His and the groomsmen’s suits were from Burton. Shoes were from Asos (groomsmen from New Look). Tie from Asos.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | Church Bible reading – we went for scriptures which reflected our coming together as a couple, marriages and relationships.
Church Music – Acoustic Christian Songs, creating a peaceful atmosphere from the beginning. All the songs were sang by friends of ours.
Reception Music –Acoustic Love Songs.
Evening Music – although we had a DJ, we purposely listed songs that were appealing to our guests, some of which had a personal meaning to us.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | Bridesmaids Dress – Asos
Shoes – any black heels they had.
Hair Accessory – eBay
Pashmina – something I came across while walking at Hounslow High Street.
THE FLOWERS | Were from a few florists at New Covent Garden Market. We went for numerous 5AM trips to the market to find the perfect set, and purchased them 2 days before the wedding.
Florist – one of our closest friend (who is not a florist by trade). Inspiration came from pinterest, searched for ‘burgundy wedding bouquet’, and she just made it happen.
THE CAKE | Roses, burgundys, purples and dusty pink, which was red velvet on the inside with some butter cream cheese filling. The idea came from pinterest, made to reality by a few of our closest friends.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Matt Penberthy – we loved his work, and just couldn’t not have him as our photographer. We love that his photos are not just photos, but as you keep looking through to the next it’s like you’re reading a story. He stayed the whole day and was really patient and flexible. His attention to detail is exceptional, capturing precious moments and the true emotions of the wedding.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We first had to decide a theme – which was difficult. Our first idea was to have a winter theme as the wedding was in February, our next choice was white and loads candles, but we felt we needed to bring a bit more colour into the day. Our final decision was to go for Burgundy – which was our favourite colour.
Centrepieces – a tall vase with flower arrangement. It was important that there were a lot of candles on each table. Rose petals were also scattered around.
Tea light candle holders were from Ikea – decorated with some laces.
Name place cards – found the idea on Etsy, but it meant printing, cutting and folding 50 flowers. So instead found someone on Etsy selling made paper flowers from Thailand, so I just had to print and cut the names to be glued into the flowers – I had to make sure I’ve made this at least a month in advance.
Table numbers and menus – were simple calligraphy font I found online and typed and printed on a hard paper.
Top table back drop – was a present from our dear friend who also made our flower arrangements.
Wedding favours – succulent plants – the idea was from a wedding shop in Etsy, however the shop was based in America so I tried to find alternative ideas locally. Pinterest again was really helpful, and also a certain shop at the New Covent Garden Market that helped us by pre-ordering a set of succulent plants to be collected a week before the wedding. The little white buckets were also from a shop in New Covent Garden Market, and cute wedding stickers from eBay.
Photos around the venue beams – we wanted the wedding to be really personal and acknowledge the people around us who have helped us get where we were, and also family who couldn’t make it there. A way to do this was to put their photos up at our wedding. We printed 100 photos of us with friends/family and hang them on strings around 4 beams at the venue.
THE HONEYMOON | We decided to postpone our honeymoon and focus on buying our first home. Which we have moved into 6 months after the wedding!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Going to New Covent Garden almost every Saturday at 5AM in the morning to gather ideas and find flowers and other wedding suppliers.
Going to the venue every other week to get inspiration on how we would like to decorate the place for our day.
Going to the All Saints Theydon, at least once a month, 6 months prior to the wedding. Getting to know the congregation and hearing their stories of their family also getting married at Gaynes Park.
Having our friends assist us in decorating the place on the day of the wedding.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Make sure you make your wedding your own. Look at the resources you have first before going out there and spending a fortune.
If you know people who can assist you in any way, get them involved as it becomes more memorable and personal.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | Matt Penberthy
Venue | Gaynes Park
Invitations | Minted
Save the Date | Not On The High Street
Thanks so much to Kate and Junjun for sharing their really wonderful wedding story today xo Lou