Homespun & Fun Country Barn Wedding

Homespun Fun Country Barn Wedding http://storyandcolour.co.uk/

 

Happy Friday WWWers, I have a delightful wedding to share with you today to get you in the mood for a weekend of fun and frolics. Think countryside setting, oodles of DIY and the happiest pair of newly-weds you ever did see.

WWW readers Jenny and Anthony were hitched on the 30th July 2016 at Swarling Manor followed by a knees up at Littlebourne Barn in Kent. They set themselves the task of planning every little detail thanks to the beautiful barn’s blank canvas. Everything from toilets, to furniture and kitchen equipment was organised by them and it all went without a hitch. With their creative vision and stylish eye they crafted a gorgeous day filled with pretty florals, gluten free coeliac friendly cakes, the coolest wedding car and hand stitched decorations.

Jenny’s gown was a real show stopper, with a beautifully flowing skirt and embellished bodice complete with lace sleeves. She finished her look with a delicate veil and flowers in her hair, didn’t she look stunning? Her fave girls wore pale pink dresses, while the boys were suited and booted in check waistcoats and coordinating ties. Enjoy every image folks.

Story & Colour, thank you for providing these dreamy love filled photographs.

 

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THE PROPOSAL | On a weekend in Copenhagen visiting the Christmas Markets. The actual proposal happened on a walk in the botanical gardens, which was perfectly secluded and picturesque!

THE VISION | Something fun and relaxed, with all our friends and family. Good food was important as well as DIY aspects, which were personal to us.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | We were literally doing everything ourselves, from planning menu’s, sourcing (and sweet talking) suppliers, hiring table wear, toilets, the kitchen equipment and furniture to making decorative items, so the 18 months we had to plan were quite necessary! It was definitely a joint effort and involved a lot of pinterest boards, spreadsheets and hours of making bits and bobs.

BUDGET | Really hard to say as we called in a lot of favours and sweet talked a lot of suppliers.

THE VENUE | Anthony is in the hospitality industry so we always knew we wanted to find a reception venue which allowed us to provide the catering and drinks ourselves and would fit in 150 guests, not an easy task! Littlebourne Barn, a 13th century barn in the middle of the village, was the perfect venue for us, not only were we free to do what we liked in terms of catering and drinks, the building itself was stunning with so much character, we loved it from the start.

The barn didn’t have a marriage licence so we needed to find somewhere to hold the ceremony. As neither of us were set on having a church wedding we decided to look at other options and found Swarling Manor, which is a family home surrounded by beautiful Kent countryside. The ceremonies are held in their immaculate gardens, which I was really keen on (in my head it would obviously be sunny!) and it offered us the countryside views that the barn lacked. The two venues together gave us everything we wanted and made the perfect combination! We also had an after party and brunch the following day at The Grove Ferry Pub, where most of the bridal party were staying at.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Dress: ‘Annocha’ by Kobus Dippenaar.

Veil: Bespoke by Ami Elisah Bridal (who also did my dress alterations).

Shoes: Rainbow found in John Lewis.

Accessories: a diamond necklace borrowed from my bridesmaid.

FINDING THE DRESS | I actually found the dress in a shop in London but it was out of my price range. My bridesmaid however suggested that as the designer was South African, a shop there may stock it and it would be cheaper due to the exchange rates. She happened to be going to Cape Town for a wedding, so she would be able to pick up the dress. I contacted Calegra in Cape Town and after many emails, sending measurements and discussing details, my bridesmaid was able to pick up my dress for me! Having never tried it on it obviously needed some adjustments, which were done by the lovely and talented Ami Elisah, who also made my veil.

GROOM’S ATTIRE | As the day was quite relaxed we didn’t want to have the groom and best men in suits so they wore tweed waistcoats from Walker Slater and trousers from Gap. They all had pocket watches as well as a thank you gift, which really finished off the outfit.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | My brother and Anthony’s sister each chose their own reading as we wanted it to be a surprise. They chose ‘On Your wedding Day’ & ‘Always Love Each Other’ which both perfectly reflected us as a couple.

A friend kindly offered to sing at the ceremony and we chose ‘Sea of Love’ to walk down the aisle to.

Our first dance was to ‘Toothpaste Kisses’ by the Maccabees followed by a ceilidh, which got everyone up on their feet and dancing.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 4 wonderful bridesmaids all of whom I have been friends with since I was young. They were just fantastic throughout the lead up to the wedding and on the day itself, I couldn’t have imagined my day without them. Finding dresses was quite a smooth process and we found (in Debenhams) beautiful nude coloured Jenny Packam dresses with an embellished top and floaty skirt, which complimented the style of my dress perfectly.

THE FLOWERS | We got the bridal party bouquet’s, button holes, aisle flowers, milk churns arrangements and wreath for the pagoda from Anemone Blue. Our florist Fiona was so helpful offering ideas and suggesting flowers which would work, as I didn’t really have a clue. We got some extra flowers for the reception venue from Triangle Nursery, which Anthony’s mum arranged beautifully in various jars I had collected. For the table centres we bought lavender plants from the local garden centre.

THE CAKE | We wanted to have a choice of cakes or cheese, which people could pick at through the evening, instead of a set dessert. I am a coeliac so it was important that the main wedding cake was gluten free so I could have some as well. We chose to have a 5 tiered ‘cheese cake’ on one table and a selection of sponge cakes, gluten free brownies (made by a friend) and a 4 tiered rice crispie cake (made by my mum, just as she did when I was little) as our centre piece.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | The photographer was really important to me and I searched through hundreds of websites trying to find someone who could capture the day in a way which reflected us. Dan from Story and Colour stood out from the start. His style is very relaxed and natural and in all his pictures he seemed to perfectly capture the emotions and fun aspect of each wedding. We are thrilled with the pictures from our wedding as they perfectly capture the emotion and details of the day in a beautiful and natural way.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | The barn was a completely blank canvas and huge, so it took a small army of generous family and friends 3 days to get it ready.

Our parents were amazing and made the bunting, tablecloths, a portable bar and order of the day signs. My mum set up a small distillery in her kitchen to make the alcoholic favours, which were a mixture of lemon cello, sloe and damson gin, and vodka and raspberry vodka. They were all decanted into little bottles, which doubled up as name places.

As Anthony works in the pub industry we had the idea to have our seating plan as different pub signs of pubs which had been relevant in our lives. My cousin is a talented blacksmith and managed to take a vague description of what we wanted and make an amazing free standing sign post, which we could hang the pub signs Anthony had painted.

So many people were so kind and leant us things which they had used at their weddings, such as rustic cakes stands, a beautiful chest a family member had made for his own daughter’s wedding, vintage tea cups and even an authentic post box my mum had in the garage. The rest of the décor was made up of bits and bobs I picked up over the year before the wedding from antique markets or on gum tree as well as lots of things we just had in the house such as picnic baskets or lanterns.

THE HONEYMOON | We had the honeymoon of a lifetime in Ecuador, the highlight being going to the Galapagos Islands! Our guests kindly bought us different parts of the honeymoon which we set up through Buy Our Honeymoon website, a great alternative to asking for money.

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Jenny: Standing on the steps about to walk down the aisle and my dad reminding me to slow down and take it all in (good advice), that moment of seeing all my friends and family smiling at me and Anthony waiting at the end of the aisle was very special.

Anthony: The whole week leading up to the wedding and the day itself was all so amazing. For me the last song and everyone joining us was fantastic and really represented what the whole day was about.

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Accept people’s help especially if you are doing a lot of it yourself. We literally couldn’t have done it without everyone’s help and actually the days setting up with family and friends was so much fun!

On a more practical note, we found that having the bar next to the dance floor meant that the party was kept in one area, adding to the atmosphere.

CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |

Photographer | Story & Colour

Venues | Littlebourne Barn & Swarling Manor & The Grove Ferry

Catering |  Yummy Pub Co

Entertainment |  Licence to Ceilidh

Flowers | Anemone Blue

Dress | Kobus Dippenaar

Veil | Ami Elisah Bridal

Groom | Walker Slater

Hair | Hannah Louise Hair

Make Up | Ellie Gill

Lighting | IA Sound & Light

 

So many lovely and personal touches. I love that quilt guest book especially!

Thanks so very much to Jenny and Anthony for sharing their wonderful wedding with us xo Lou

 

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