Autumn wedding fans are in for a real treat today, but let’s face it, this is a beautiful wedding at any time of year. Early on, WWW readers Lucy and Terry’s florist identified their vision as rustic luxe and I think this sums up the aesthetic perfectly. Think cosy autumn vibes with a rich burgundy and wine colour palette, topped off with a few copper touches to glam everything up.
Our couple tied the knot at Terry’s local Greek Orthodox church and followed the ceremony with festivities at Gaynes Park, all on the 3rd November 2018. They made the most of the different areas of their venue and each one is beautifully adorned, I’m absolutely loving the rich florals.
The marvellous Kate and Jon Gray of Kate Gray Photography were on hand to capture the day, and didn’t they do a marvellous job? Thank you so much for sharing with us. Enjoy everyone!
When we set the date as November we knew we wanted to have a rich autumnal colour palette throughout the stationery, venue and outfits. It was also really important to us that everything flowed through from the save the dates to on the day.
We chose a rich burgundy/wine colour as our main colour theme and we incorporated copper to make it look luxe/glam – our florist very early on described the theme as rustic luxe and it really came together from there on.
The Planning Process
The first step in planning was to choose a reception venue and agree a date with the church – we did this within just three weeks of getting engaged. As soon as that was settled, we then spent hours researching online all of the other bits, Terry and I divided and conquered to shortlist photographers, videographers, band, stationery and florists first, then slowly narrowed them down to finalists!
The most important things in the planning for us were; type of venue, an amazing photographer and a band that would keep everyone dancing all night.
There is a famous wedding budget spreadsheet at my workplace that everyone shares when someone gets engaged. The last few people to use it were grooms so I took that and made it pretty.
We took planning/budget advice from recently married friends or recently engaged friends, luckily for us there were quite a few of us who got engaged at the same time so we could all share advice.
In terms of a budget, with the date set to November 2018, we planned out how much we could realistically save up until then and then worked from there.
Terry is Greek Orthodox, so there was no question when it came down to where we would hold the ceremony, it was always going to be his local church, The 12 Apostles Greek Orthodox church in Brookmans Park. Luckily for us, it is the most stunning church.
We knew that we wanted a barn venue for the reception and when we visited Gaynes Park we just got a feeling that it was the one and put the deposit down the very same day! Having the accommodation there for immediate family also sold the venue for us.
Having the Orangery as well as the Mill Barn was key for us given that we knew we were looking at an autumn/winter date. We wanted to have somewhere to have our drinks reception that was inside but still beautiful (in case it was cold or raining) and to keep the main room hidden from our guests until the wedding breakfast. The Mill Barn is also quite cosy with the bar essentially on the dance floor (if you have the extended dance floor) so we knew we’d have people drinking and dancing all night, rather than split across various rooms.
The Readings & Music
There are no music or readings allowed in the Greek Orthodox Church.
Your Outfits & Accessories
I found my wedding dress in the fourth shop I went to, it was at least the 30th dress I tried on and I was beginning to think that “the one” moment wasn’t going to happen for me. It was actually the same shop my sister-in-law got her dress from and we just knew straight away that it was “the one”, the way it swooshed and just made me feel amazing. It wasn’t the style I thought I was going to go for – I really thought I would go for something simple and not as big but in the end I just went with what looked best on!
For jewellery, I wanted to keep it simple because there was so much lace detailing on the dress so I wore a simple but stunning hair clip made by my hair and makeup artist Boe of Botias hair and makeup. She makes the most gorgeous handmade accessories.
For shoes, I originally bought some beautiful Rachel Simpson shoes but found that they were just too uncomfortable so ended up wearing some red velvet heels from Oasis that really saved me with all the standing!
Bride and bridesmaids’ hair and makeup was done by Boe of Botias Hair and Makeup. Boe is so lovely and made everyone feel so comfortable, plus she has some serious skills. After my bridal trial there was no doubt that I would be going with her.
My bridesmaids wore the Chianti dresses from Rewritten – these were the perfect red wine colour to go with our theme. My two bridesmen wore the same as the groomsmen.
The flower girls were my two nieces, aged 18 months and four years old. We had their dresses made at Little Bevan with burgundy sashes to match the rest of the wedding party.
Terry and his groomsmen wore black tuxes from Charles Tyrwhitt, to fit with the rustic luxe / glam theme. To stand out from the others the groom wore a velvet suit jacket from Hackett.
All of our flowers were by Lily & May who we loved working with because she really got our vision straight away. In the first meeting I said I wanted a “wildflower” look bouquet and she was very straight up and said do you really mean that – showed me what that might look like in reality and we ended up with a more structured but lots of greens look.
On the day when Claire dropped the bouquets off at my house I was just so pleased – they were absolutely perfect. I knew then that I would be blown away when first walking into the Mill Barn at Gaynes, there were flowers, greens and candles everywhere you looked, it was enchanting and better than I could ever have imagined.
When we found Kate and Jon of Kate Gray Photography we both loved their natural style – not loads of posed group shots but photos of our guests enjoying the day. When we spoke with Kate and Jon we just knew they were perfect. We really liked that they were a husband and wife duo and that they could get photos of us both getting ready at different venues. It just so happened that unbeknown to us they had photographed a friend’s wedding too and their photos had been amazing so that was enough to finalise it!
Our wedding cake was a four tiered semi-naked Victorian sponge cake with alternative flavours of plain and salted caramel by The Cake Doll. It was decorated with flowers from Lily & May.
Mark Lenik of Lenik Wedding Cinematography did our wedding film. We really struggled in choosing a videographer, a lot of the stuff out there was just a bit too cheesey for us. Mark really makes a movie out of your wedding day and this felt like the right style and approach for us.
The Details & Décor
We had on the day stationery to match our save the dates and invitations, all made by Amanda Michelle stationery. It was a must for us that all signage flowed through.
For the Orangery, as well as on-the-day welcome signage, we bought some wooden cake stands to hold our favourite Crosstown Doughnuts and we decorated the room with candles and the same greens from my bouquet. We held our drinks reception here after the church ceremony which was a pimp your prosecco station.
In the main barn, we had festoon lights draped in between the beams and mood lights in the evening by Mediterranean Occasions. Our table centrepieces consisted of tall copper wire frames with flowers on top, with candles scattered on the table, all provided by our florist Lily & May. For our wedding breakfast, served in here, we had a lobster tartlet to start, roast rib of beef that was carved by a nominated guest in each table for main (the lucky nominated guest had a custom apron and chef’s hat to wear for the carving) and a trio of our favourite desserts to finish – Eton mess, caramel cheesecake and a profiterole!
In the evening, whilst turning the main barn around, we had after dinner cocktails of espresso and passionfruit martinis back in the orangery.
Once the barn was ready for the evening, we had the most amazing band, The White Keys, who also provided a DJ between sets. We also had a great photobooth by The London Lightbox where we had designed our own prints to match our stationery and we had a GIF functionality which you could upload directly to Instagram – we loved it.
We went on minimoon to Soho Farmhouse in the Cotswolds which was lovely and relaxing and gave us time to soak it all in. We go on safari for our honeymoon (aka the Supermoon) this July and cannot wait!
- Seeing Terry for the first time waiting for me at the end of the aisle
- Entering the Mill Barn as a married couple – the whole room exploded!
- We loved our cocktail station during the turnaround
- Dancing all night to the band with our closest friends and family
Advice For Other Couples
Make sure you do what you want to do, we had lots of people telling us how or what you should do on the wedding day. We tended to politely accept advice and then ignore!
Keep a spreadsheet in excel for your budget – we also had our savings plan in the same excel so we could make sure we had enough money in time for all of our supplier payments.
The groom should also decide early on what style of suit and colour etc. he wants him and his groomsmen to wear, especially if they are all different shapes and sizes as not all suits come in all sizes.
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Kate Gray Photography
Beverly Hills London
Venue Stylist & Lighting
Wow, what a gorgeous day! Thank you for sharing your beautiful autumn wedding with us Lucy and Terry. Rachel x