Heartfelt Wild Flowers Outdoorsy DIY Wedding

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We’re headed to the beautiful Dorset countryside for this retreat style affair, in which two families came together to celebrate a very special union.

WWW readers Aaron and Rebecca were married on Wednesday 8th April 2015 underneath a beautiful floral archway at Lox Lane Farm. It was super important to then that their Christian values were were incorporated and their ceremony was very meaningful, with their loved ones all contributing. With family travelling from abroad a fun packed 3 days pre wedding was in store ,which must have been so much fun and allowed everyone to mingle.

There were oodles of blooms throughout in peachy hues, the maids wore mismatched dresses and the boys bow ties and braces. Rebecca wore an elegant Annasul Y gown with flowers in her hair for a romantic and relaxed look. I adore this wonderful day.

Thanks so much to Matt and Esther for sharing these sublime images with us.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | Aaron flew us to a quaint little town, Castle Rock in Northern Ireland. He proposed at sunset while we were strolling down an untouched beach… There was no one else around for miles, which was perfect!

We met whilst travelling through Europe and the Middle East only 5 months before our engagement, and Aaron had scouted this spot as where he would propose to his ‘future wife’ just before we met… I don’t think he’d anticipated going back so soon…

THE VISION | We wanted our wedding to be really simple, and a true representation of what’s most important to us.

Being outdoors was high up on our list, as well as wild-flowers everywhere, lots of good food and beer and to have as big of a celebration as possible in the evening (preferably in the form of a Scottish Ceilidh).

We’re both Christians so we wanted to incorporate these values in our day. We had worship in our ceremony and had some people most important to us pray and bless our marriage.

As we’re both from different countries (Aaron is from the U.S), we knew we’d have a lot of international guests and family so we wanted to make our wedding a ‘retreat’-like affair and have our closest family and friends come away with us for the three days before our wedding.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | Pretty stressful to be honest. We had 5 months to plan, and thankfully had lots of friends and family willing to help us with various projects.

My Mum and Aaron did most of the booking and budgeting, while I focused on reading wedding blogs and finding pretty pictures on Pinterest.

I also decided to design and hand-paint our wedding invitations, which was fun, but I probably wouldn’t do it again.

The venue was probably the most important part of our wedding, we were looking for somewhere that didn’t need much ‘work’ to make it beautiful, and we were surrounded by rolling hills and old buildings so that cut down a lot of decorating and extra planning.

THE VENUE | We chose Lox Lane as our venue, in the middle of the Dorset countryside, 5 minutes from Shaftesbury and the famous ‘Hovis Hill’. It was also the perfect showcase of the English Countryside for our international guests.

Lox Lane has rooms and suites in a courtyard setting, which we allocated to family and friends, and a big house that we used for the bridal party. This was one of the best decisions we made and we had a blast with all of our favourite people, including our very own Highland Games, huge meals and movie-nights in the days leading up to the wedding.

We were married outside in the courtyard and had a marquee set up for the meal and the Ceilidh.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | I wore an Annasul Y dress (with some white heels which stayed on my feet for about 10 minutes). The dress was strapless and fitted but with a floaty layer over the top.

The veil was my Mum’s, and was the same one she wore on her wedding day!

FINDING THE DRESS | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal in Botley, Southampton is where I found the dress. It was the first shop I went it, and is such a lovely environment. Hannah was super helpful and made it a fun, relaxing experience.

GROOM’S ATTIRE | Aaron went for a slim/skinny Navy Blue suit from Next, with brown leather Oxfords. The groomsmen followed suit with navy blue braces, bow-ties and dress trousers with a white shirt.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | I walked down the aisle to ‘Hymn’ by Brooke Fraser.

Our friend, Aaron, married us and curated a beautiful service for us. We’d been legally married in a registry office a few weeks before, so our ceremony could be whatever we wanted it to be!

He began by talking about marriage and then facilitated our vows, which we had both written ourselves.

We had worship music in our ceremony, lead by Ben and some other friends, during which Aaron and I had planned to wash each other’s feet as a symbol of what we wanted our marriage to be like.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had seven beautiful bridesmaids. My sister, Lena, was my maid of honour and she was fab! She’s so organised and creative and held lots of things together over the planning process, and wedding week!

We loosely went for a Navy Blue/Blush theme with the bridal party.

The bridesmaids all picked their own dresses, within the criteria of being blush/pink in colour. I wanted them all to feel comfortable and beautiful in what they were wearing, and didn’t want to pick a dress that wasn’t loved by everyone! It was a bit of a risk as two of them were coming from overseas and we had no way to see them altogether before the day, but I love how it worked out.

THE FLOWERS | A family friend Sarah put together my bouquet, bridesmaid flowers, and button-holes. She is a floral genius and did such a great job.

My Grandma, affectionately known as ‘Omi’, put together the flowers for my hair and the bridesmaids’ as well as the flowers on the Arbour that we were married under.

We actually ordered the flowers wholesale, this helped us save on money and also meant we had a lot more flowers to go with my ‘flowers-everywhere’ vision. The flowers we used were ranunculus, little pink roses, dahlia, daisies, white stock and lots and lots of eucalyptus from the gardens of various friends of friends.

THE CAKE | One of my school friends turned cake baker and decorator, Millie, made our cake on very short notice, and it was the perfect mix of spongy and moist: delicious.

My mother and sister-in-law added the final touches resulting in a “half-dressed” look with flowers on each tier.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Matt and Esther are a photography-duo and were the perfect photographers for our wedding. They were lovely to have around and great at understanding what we wanted from our photos. They left us with pictures that make us feel like we are there all over again.

It was great to have both of them there, as they could follow both mine and Aaron’s mornings getting ready, and between them capture all the special moments of the day.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We definitely went for a DIY approach to details and décor. The three days before the wedding were partly spent setting up for the wedding and we had so much help from the bridal party and family members. We used trusty IKEA candles and fairy-lights, and the extra flowers from our wholesale order pretty much everywhere around our venue!

Mine and Aaron’s dads built the Arbour that we were married under, and it was decorated by leaves and flowers and small paintings by one of my bridesmaids.

We sourced hay bales from a local farm, and asked friends and family for fire-pits to set up campfires outside the reception.

The table decorations were easy as we left the tables bare, inline with our rustic theme, we then put flower heads, eucalyptus and candles as a table runner along the middle.

Some good friends set up a waffle bar at the reception and decorated it so well. All of the food was signed and presented using chalk-boards and wooden planks.

We had our reception inside a marquee, we opted for minimal add-ons (flooring, fabric panels etc) partly to keep the cost down, but we also felt it was fitting with our vision for an outdoorsy, informal day. Plus our ceilidh band informed us that it’s best not to have a solid floor for Ceilidh dancing.

THE HONEYMOON | We drove off from the wedding in our little KA, ‘lovingly’ decorated by friends (some of which are unable to be removed to this day). We stayed in the fabulous Bath Spa Hotel for the first three nights, then drove to Cornwall to a tiny but very cute cottage and spent time by the coast. We had done a lot of travelling in the months before our wedding so it was great for us to stay in England.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Our wedding was the first time both of our families had met so bringing them together was so much fun!

The ceremony was such a great part of the day, it was so meaningful to have our parents and grandparents bless our marriage and life together.

During the reception my brother and sister performed a dance they had been working on for a few months, which was hilarious and somehow turned into a boy vs. girl dance off grease-style.

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Stop all wedding planning a week before the wedding and sleep so that you are refreshed and have energy to enjoy the day.

Don’t try and please everyone in your planning process, if you’re enjoying your wedding other people will too!

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photography | Matt and Esther Photography

Venue | Lox Lane

Reception Band | Dorest Ceilidh

Catering | The Fat Hog

Dress | Hannah Elizabeth Bridal

Cake | Millies Kitchens

 

Wow, what a perfect day.

Aaron and Rebecca, many thanks to you both for sharing your super gorgeous nuptials with us xo Lou

 

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