Pretty Meets Relaxed Countryside Wedding

Pretty Relaxed Countryside Wedding

This lovely pair will leave you beaming today, their happiness is infectious and their wedding gorgeous.

WWW readers Ashleigh and Jason chose to get married on Saturday 18th June 2016 at Godwick Great Barn in Norfolk. There to capture the day was the wonderful Katherine Ashdown and Capture Media, their images and film I am delighted to be sharing with you today, thanks guys!

As a couple who love to walk (a couple after my own heart!) these two embarked upon planning a countryside wedding with a relaxed atmosphere. You can just see how chilled everyone was from the beams all round and the memorable moments, which included a family tradition on the dance floor. Aside from the feel, the styling was out of this world beautiful. They hand crafted their way to perfection, with a wooden photo booth frame and whimsical signage. I also have to shout out to Constance Rose who created some of the loveliest pink floral arrangements ever.

Ashleigh looked stunning in a blush Ella Rosa ballgown with boho style hair accessory, while Jason opted for a tweed and bow tie combo. LOVE IT.


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THE PROPOSAL | Jason and I had taken a trip to Dublin with my parents when one evening he asked me to take a walk with him after we had been out to dinner. We walked over to Ha’Penny bridge when half way across Jason had stopped and pulled out our camera before asking a passer by if they would mind taking a picture of us together. Little did I know that the moment when I stood and posed for the shot, it would the last few seconds before becoming engaged. Jason dropped to one knee and pulled out a small square box from his pocket, opened it and before my eyes I saw this sparkling ring suddenly fall to the floor. Jason searched around my feet to try and find where the ring had fallen, only inches away from the edge of the bridge. The next I remember, I’d wiped my eyes to see he’d resumed his position and asked me to marry him. I paused, cried again and then he placed this beautiful ring onto my finger, stood, kissed my forehead and thanked the passer by who was still holding our camera. Turn’s out Jason had set the camera mode to record and now we will forever have video footage to look back on at what had been the most amazing day of our lives thus far. The feeling truly was overwhelming and quite unexplainable.

THE VISION | We wanted a party. A wedding is a celebration and therefore we needed guests to feel relaxed and take in their surroundings. We are also well known between friends that we the couple that goes on lots of walks so having a countryside wedding was ideal for us. The theme of this then followed accordingly and we were soon discussing hay bales and fire pits with outdoor food vans and handmade rustic décor. Personal finishing touches were just as important to us as the food we were going to serve or the outfits we were going to wear therefore it took a long time to ensure we pieced this all together to pull off the atmosphere we wanted.

THE PLANNING PROCESS | We began planning a few months after our engagement and it really was everything you imagine; exciting, stressful (especially the final few weeks beforehand), scary, amazing and emotional. It can easily take over your life for a year or so doing it the way we chose but looking back I am grateful for the effort we made and the laughter that was shed on our wedding day. It made it all worth it and if I had to do it all over again I would do it the exact same. Planning was time consuming and I have never been so addicted to my emails. Ensuring that timings etc were all scheduled for different suppliers was a tricky and responsible task and I feel we had a little insight into what it must be like running a business – it really did feel that scary at times!

THE VENUE | We chose the magical Godwick Great Barn in Tittleshall, Norfolk. From the minute that Jason and I got engaged we knew that to get the most out of our day we needed to find a venue that would allow us to put our own stamp on it and as beautiful as many stately homes appeared, we just knew that this wasn’t right for us and didn’t reflect our character as a couple. One of the selling points for me was that Godwick had a limited amount of rooms and guests could only wander between the outside lawn, inside a beautiful brick barn dancing away or grabbing a tipple from the bar area. We found there was a feeling of togetherness this way yet you were still able to catch some space should you wish. Godwick catered for our large party and portrayed a really relaxed environment to compliment our style and show off our own creativity with secluded surroundings. To top it off the venue also offered cute little shepherds huts to spend our wedding night in as an alternative to their luxurious B&B.

THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | My dress was a blush tone ballgown from the Ella Rosa bridal collection which I just adored. The fit of the gown felt perfect and secure with so much fun in the skirt. Looking back on our wedding day, there are no doubts about the dress I chose, the feeling it gave me was exactly how a bride should feel. I went slightly out of my comfort zone as most who know me would have expected a ‘boho’ type style which I even convinced myself that it’s what I wanted until I tried this on. I can remember only having my dress hooked up for about an hour in the evening because I loved having the long train and big skirt following me around on the dance floor. As I didn’t find it in my dress, I decided to add in a little boho touch to my look through my pearl and rhinestone headpiece by Ivory & Co and wore it across my forehead instead of within my hair. Earrings were a gift from my Dad and the locket was a present from Jason the morning of our wedding along with my favourite peony and blush Jo Malone perfume. Shoes weren’t a big deal for me as I opted for comfort rather than style although I found some cute little T-bar short heels from the bridal shop I bought my dress from and the designer was PINK.

FINDING THE DRESS | Going against the ordinary, choosing the dress was not a priority as the reality of our engagement really settled in and instead I found myself throwing everything but the dress into the planning until I reached a stage whereby it was one of the few ‘big’ items left to organise. One of the main reasons I didn’t rush into this was purely due to the fact that I felt overwhelmed by it and as
though there was a lot of pressure associated with finding ‘the one’ knowing that feeling confident on my wedding day is one of the main focal factors. After a good chat with the girls of my family, I’d decided to book my first appointment at a local bridal boutique nearby only having done minimal research online and in magazines so that I wouldn’t be disappointed if a dress I’d fallen in love with on a model, looked awful on me. Personally, this worked out effective as it allowed me to try on a wide range of styles and shapes in order to pick out something that flattered my shape without having a comparison already in mind. It did take a long time to find something my heart was set on and after numerous days shopping I’d decided to ask for recommendations from those I worked with who helped me come to a decision to look a bit further afield and I ended up travelling away from home about an hour to an independent bridal store; ‘Lavender & Jude’ whereby one of the ladies agreed to open on a day they were closed and made the whole experience lovely. From the minute I walked in the door, I was greeted with a relaxed atmosphere whereby it felt that the whole appointment was about me. Claire, who I spoke with asked me about the whole wedding day not just what I wanted out of a dress and I felt that she got to know a bit of my personality and what I wanted from the day and the way I wanted to feel. I tried on various styles and I was able to pick out a dress and ask to try it on without feeling rushed or pressured into anything and it as soon as I tried on my ballgown I just smiled, a true and really happy smile so from that moment everyone in the room knew it had to be.

GROOM’S ATTIRE | Finding Jason’s suit was one of the easiest tasks for us as he was very clear on the type of style he wanted to achieve and knew from day one that whatever suit he chose, it needed to fit well with a bow tie. His brown 3 piece herringbone suit was from ASOS (all groomsmen wore the same), white shirt from Hugo Boss and toe-cap detailed shoes from Paul Smith.

THE READINGS & MUSIC | As we had a church ceremony we chose Corinthians for our bible reading and an introductory reading called ‘Union’ by Robert Fulgham. I had chosen to walk in to the church to the classical Pachelbal’s canon as it always gave me goosebumps and then as Jason and I walked out of the church we played ‘Ain’t no mountain high enough’ by Marvin Gaye & Tammy Terrell as it has been a favourite sing-a-long of ours for many years. One of our friends also sang during our signing of the register and performed two songs; ‘Songbird’ by Eva Cassidy & ‘Yours’ by Ella Henderson. During our reception drinks we had hired Lee Vann to play acoustic until we sat down to eat and then our evening band Agent Orange began shortly after our first dance getting everyone into the spirit for a good boogie. We had struggled for a while to choose a first dance song as many we liked had other memories attached therefore we wanted something that would be quite memorable for our first dance only and something we may be likely to hear at random in the future which will remind us of our day therefore we chose a classic and went for Shania Twain ‘From this moment’. There was no dance rehearsal, we just found ourselves singing to each other and I think I shed a few tears.

BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I knew that for my girls I wanted them in long light coloured dresses so that I could match them with some vibrant flowers. I ended up choosing classic V neck and back shaped chiffon dresses from House of Fraser in pastel sage green and they put up their hair however they wanted with a choice of two types of shoes that helped to compliment the dress.

THE FLOWERS | Jason has to take 100% responsibility for choosing our florist – a rare decision for a bloke to make I know! But he chose perfectly. The style and colour of flowers he left down to me once we had booked her and I knew I wanted vibrant pinks with natural foliage for the bouquets, buttonholes and our flower girls head hoop. Jo from Constance Rose did an amazing job and I would highly recommend her to anyone local within the area.

THE CAKE | The cake! The cake! The cake! How we loved our cake, from the appearance of it to the taste! Charlie from Ophelia Weddings made our cake the morning of our wedding and spent time in the lead up to our day making sure she knew what vision we had for its style and taste. We opted for a different flavour for each tier and chose carrot cake, lemon and poppyseed and finally blueberry.

YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | The wonderful Katherine Ashdown was our only option for photography after I had seen plenty of her work even before we were engaged. I don’t actually think we ever looked at another photographer’s website before booking her, I just knew straight away. On the day she was an absolute star, we hadn’t ever been professionally photographed before and we were amazed at how relaxed Kathy made us feel and helped with direction for every single one of our couple shots. Her and her assistant Heather blended in to the day perfectly and took charge in ensuring they captured the shots we wanted. We couldn’t be happier with the results.

THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We tried to add in as much of our personality as we could into the décor and some of our favourite pieces included our handmade Mr & Mrs flag signs that we hung above our table, wooden polaroid photo booth frame, outdoor archway and photo’s of each guest instead of a place name. The venue itself looked beautiful with strung fairy lights and a natural barn ambience. All of the décor was handmade by either myself or Jason alongside a huge helping hand from my parents.

THE HONEYMOON | We escaped to Hawaii for 3 weeks island hopping around 3 different islands and wowee was it amazing! The most picture perfect laid back and eye opening place we have ever visited, full of culture and aloha spirit! Hiking, swimming in waterfalls and zip-lining above thousands of feet had to be our top highlights!

MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Jason didn’t turn around whilst I was walking down the aisle so I can remember as I arrived at the top and he turned to look at me his eyes lit up and he just came out with ‘WOW’ then repeatedly nodded his head a few times which made me laugh and at that moment I was glad he waited until I reached him. I think a memorable moment for all involved has to be when the Meatloaf song ‘Bat out of Hell’ was played and my family dance tradition began. Whenever this song is played and the whole family are together, we will all stand in one long line and sing at the top of our voices whilst pulling out the air guitars until the chorus begins and we frantically charge from one side of the room to the other. It was great as all of our friends who weren’t aware of this got stuck in and stood in a line facing us so the charge became a huge crowd of laughing bodies and a few accidental knee slides.

ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Don’t hold back on what you want! – If you want it that much then it’s worth the risk or saving for. Try your hand at DIY and don’t worry if it’s not perfect, other people won’t recognise what they don’t know. Invest in a good photographer and don’t worry about the weather, a spot of rain isn’t all that bad – you really won’t care.


Photographer | Katherine Ashdown

Videographer | Capture Media

Venue | Godwick Great Barn

Florist | Constance Rose

Music | Lee Vann  & Agent Orange

Cake | Ophelia Weddings

Transport | Bus and Us, Wedding wheels next-the-sea & Vintage VW Experience

Food | Eat Well  & Christophe’s Crepes

Wedding Invitations | Aimee Paints

Dress | Ella Rosa from Lavender & Jude


Wow so wonderful.

Ashleigh and Jason, thank you so very much for sharing your amazing wedding story with us xo Lou


4 thoughts on “Pretty Meets Relaxed Countryside Wedding

Hi from the Vintage Suit Hire Company. We absolutely love the styling in this wedding. If anyone else is looking for tweed suits and would rather hire than buy… we’re here!

Lovely wedding and some amazing photos. Everyone looked stunning and looked like they had a great time. Congratulations to Ashleigh and Jason and all the best to them in the future.

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