Have you ever been to Durdle Door in Dorset? It’s a really magical place, we actually visited on the same holiday when we got engaged. I can see exactly why Matt and Jana decided to hold their wedding there on August 15th 2015, as it’s so romantic. The views and scenery are really remarkable in this set of images and the walking down the ‘aisle’ shots must be some of the best I’ve ever clapped eyes on.
Jana looked effortless in her Maggie Sottero gown and ribbon veil while Matt donned a traditional kilt. There were pops of colour in the yellow and red blooms, while the pub reception was decorated simply. But the cake? Oh the cake, it was a masterpiece.
Paul Underhill, thank you so much today for sharing these breathtaking images with us.
THE PROPOSAL | The first 5 days of a trip to England were painful for Jana. Every time Matt bent down to tie a shoe or pose for a picture, or every time they were somewhere beautiful she thought “this is it – he’s totally going to propose!”
And he didn’t.
It was during a little excursion to explore Cornwall, we booked a cute B&B in Marazion and wandered around the village. That night we drove to Minack Theatre to watch a musical. Minack Theatre is an old outdoor theatre, actually carved into the cliff side overlooking the sea. It’s one of the most beautiful and romantic places EVER – wine, cheese, live orchestra, bright full moon, and literally fireworks…. and no proposal.
The next morning Jana had a chat with herself “let it go- seriously Jana- let it go.” She knew that if she kept looking for it, it was never going to happen, not to mention it would ruin the trip.
That day we drove to St. Ives. When we parked the car, we were nearly green from the two-hours straight of windy (but gorgeous green) countryside roads. The coastal village was so sweet and charming, and the colourful row houses and smell of the sea drew us right to the beach. We devoured a traditional Cornish tea and then took a walk on the beach. The sand in St. Ives is as white as white and the water is tropical blue. And it was here that Matt “finally” asked Jana to spend her life with him. Time stood still for the rest of the day while we laughed and hugged and cried and celebrated and took hilarious pictures. A time we won’t ever forget.
THE VISION | A super casual but fun-filled day celebrating us with our friends and family. We wanted our ceremony to be special and amongst nature, and we wanted or reception to be in a place where people could relax, have some drinks and eat delicious food.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | Everything was planned over here in Canada. We had been to Durdle Door a couple of times – one time of which we got caught in a coastal wind and rain storm. It was a very soggy but exile rating memory. Matt also grew up exploring the Jurassic coast so it was a special place for him as well. With plenty of Google searching we landed upon the Antelope in Poole. We wanted something in Poole as that’s where we would be staying and it’s where most of Matt’s family live, so we were stoked when we found exactly what we were looking for. And with the help of Matt’s family – namely his hisser – we started the planning of the small details. Lots of Pinterest, lots of messages and lots of bank transfers later everything was booked. We got to England a week before the big day and that’s when all the finer planning took place. And with the help from my family and friends, a few pints and some tears – we pulled it off.
THE VENUE | Ceremony: Durdle Door
Reception: The Antelope Hotel
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Dress: Maggie Soterro (Tara’s Boutique in Cranbrook BC Canada).
Shoes: Art (From The Red Pair Shoe Store in Rossland BC Canada).
Hairpiece: Ribbon veil hand made by Jana and clip was borrowed from a good friend.
Earrings: Borrowed from a good friend.
Necklace and bracelet: Gift from two good friends.
FINDING THE DRESS | I didn’t think I wanted a traditional wedding dress until one day I went with my mom and grandma to try on dresses at Tara’a Boutique in Cranbrook. . One of the first one’s I tried on (It was a Maggie Sottero called the Hudson) I loved but it was so early and it was the first place we’d looked. So I left there with it in the back of my mind. After a few more days of torturous wedding dress shopping (I didn’t find it as fun as it looked) I was still thinking about the Maggie Sottero that I tried on at Tara’s Boutique. So I decided to google the designer and came across a runway video of her collection. While I was watching it, Matt came over and watched it with me. All these dresses were coming down the runway and he was silent, suddenly a model wearing the Hudson walked down and Matt said “ooh I like that one”. Without saying a world I decided that was the dress.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Matt, though he is English, has a Scottish background and has traditionally worn a kilt at celebrations. He is also a Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer. Some will say it’s tradition to wear your uniform at your wedding, but Matt really wanted to honour both so he had a kilt hand-made in Warfield but a cute Scottish lady. The tartan was the RCMP tartan and he wore his ceremony belt with it. He ordered the shirt and jacket from a Scottish company online.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | Our celebrant was from Choice Ceremonies. Her name is Leslie and she was amazing. The ceremony was planned through many emails inspired by a traditional hand fasting ceremony, written by us and edited by her. The day of the ceremony she was supportive and she performed the ceremony with such grace, beauty and some humour. She was perfect.
We love North American Country and Folk music, so I must admit most of the music stemmed from that genre, including our first dance: “Ain’t it Enough by The Old Crow Medicine Show.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | My best friend and childhood friend Candace. We’ve known each other since we were 6 and have been through so much life together. I don’t call her a friend I call her a sister.
THE FLOWERS | Red and yellow roses with Baby’s Breath. Thanks to my newest sister-in-law ordering and picking up for me.
THE CAKE | A naked cake to me is so natural and beautiful and suited our day. Dani – my other sister-in-law is a semi-professional cake maker (Hope Bakes) made the cake and it turned out exactly how I envisioned it.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Paul Underhill!! He was absolutely amazing. We wanted a photographer who could capture moments of the day – not posed pics just moments. And that he did. Everyone loved his style. We’ve received so many compliments on our photos. Sure – the scenery was beautiful, but he truly captured the feeling and essence of the day… and you barely knew he was there.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | The décor was set up by Nature for the ceremony and the old pub décor was exactly what we wanted for the reception. Aside from that, we included a card at each table with the lyrics from our first dance song (“Ain’t it Enough” by The Old Crow Medicine Show) some chocolate from our local chocolatier in Canada and sprinkled with candy and baby’s breath around the room.
THE HONEYMOON | We haven’t honeymooned yet!!! Hoping to in the new year. Possibly some time in Costa Rica.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Our most memorable (and favourite) part of the day was the moment we saw each other at the ceremony. The second most memorable was the moment we walked into the reception for the first time. We chose to walk in unannounced and it was perfect because we got to soak in the magic before anyone noticed we were there. We walked into the candle lit space filled with our friends and family mingling about with pints and talking and dancing and eating. It was such a special moment.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Advice: if you are making a speech have a list written out of the people you really want to thank so that you don’t get over emotional and forget! Yep that happened to us…. worst feeling the next morning, luckily we were forgiven! LOL.
We also had a moment just the two of us between the ceremony and the reception where we went back to our suite and just paused. We got to check in with one another, share some special words and some sweet kisses! It was nice to connect at the midway point of the day.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Location | Durdle Door Coast Path in Lulworth
Venue | The Antelope
Ceremony | Lesley Edwards: Choice Ceremonies
Double Decker Bus Hire | Premier Carriages
Bag Piper | Alan
Hair | Maddisons
Shoes | The Red Pair Rossland Canada
Dress | Tara’s Boutique Cranbrook Canada
Grooms Jacket | MacGregor and MacDuff
Chocolate Favours | Mountain Nugget
Cake | Hope Bakes
Photographer | Destination wedding photographer Paul Underhill
Thank you so much Matt and Jana for sharing your gorgeous wedding story with us xo Lou