Oh Amy and Thea, your delightfully fresh Mexican inspired wedding has me all in a tizz today.
Colour popping décor, blousy beautiful blooms, fun paper goods and gorgeous style all round. YAY. They also may just have one of the best laugh-out-loud proposal stories I have read in a while, it’s brilliant. This fun loving couple smiled all day long and love was certainly in the air. I adore the flag bunting, succulent filled pots on the tables, the lighthouse setting and bargain eBay frocks. They looked stunning.
Thanks so very much to Katie Byram Photography for sending over these joy filled photographs for us to enjoy.
THE PROPOSAL | Amy proposed, sadly her Grandma had died, so Amy received a little bit of money in the will. Amy used this money to buy a lovely ethical ring from Etsy. However, Amy is terrible at keeping secrets, i.e., she kept on dropping weddings into every topic of conversation. So a couple of weeks before she was due to propose I asked her if that was her plan. I then also foiled her surprise plan by having my first roller derby game on the day she planned to propose. As she is terrible at keeping secrets I knew she was going to propose… however, she used this to her advantage…
I (Amy) woke Thea up with breakfast and a gift of a whole new set of fancy make up in Cath Kidston wash bags. After that, I took out a pastel cardboard ring box, and started telling her how important she was, how I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her. She was shaking, and saying – I didn’t know you would ask so early in the day! I opened the box to reveal…
A sterling silver twig necklace (to match the engagement ring). This was the beginning of a long day of hoax proposals!
The proposal, part 2: After breakfast, we started getting ready to go to the roller derby bout. Before we left, a bouquet of flowers were delivered, and Thea started getting flustered again, thinking I was proposing. I assured her I wasn’t, and off we went.
Once we arrived at the sports hall, though, I pulled out another pastel card ring box and told her how proud I was of her, how I loved her, etc, and inside was… a brooch! Of a T Rex, in reference to her derby name. No proposal yet! I think it was distraction enough to help her overcome her first bout nerves, hehe…
The proposal, part 3: We returned home from the bout and I gifted her a shower gel called ‘Not another bloody shower gel’ – a joke because I’m a products addict, and we usually have about five on the go, but had somehow run out! And a shaving cream called ‘Derby’ as a sort of gag reference to her roller derby. She washed, and then I gifted her a new pink chiffon skirt to wear to dinner, and another pastel ring box. *Again* I made a very convincing proposal lead-up speech, and opened it to reveal… a bracelet. Chortle chortle!
The proposal, part 4: So off we went to dinner. We walked from our flat in Gateshead to Big Mussel on Newcastle Quayside – we went there quite a bit when we lived in Gateshead and it’s a nice relaxed place. Part way through the dinner, I said “I think you’ve dropped something”, and when she looked down she saw a ring box by her foot. She said something along the lines of “not here?” and I just asked her to open it. Inside was… a pair of silver leaf earrings. We finished up our meal, and headed home, on the way calling for a bottle of fizz and drinking it on the Millennium Bridge overlooking the Tyne.
The proposal, part 5: We walked home, past the amazing graffiti wall next to the Sage. It was here that I got down on a wobbly knee, and this time I really did have a ring in the box! Shame it was only a ring pop!
The proposal, part 6: When we got home, I told Thea to wait in the hall while I put on some music, put out some heart and ring shaped Haribo. I’m a poet, and had written her a poem, so brought her through and had her read it. When she had finished I was wearing two Love Heart rings I’d had made – one said “Will you” and then other said “Marry me”. She said yes, and I opened the box to reveal a ring… a Love Heart ring which said “Yes”!
The proposal, part 7: After she put on the ‘Yes’ ring, I got out the real one. I’d had a custom ring box made by a woman whose store is called Arts & Candies, and it’s got an ‘icing’ top covered with little sweets and sugar guinea pigs to represent our two! I also had two custom champagne flutes I had made, bought on Etsy, which had Mrs painted on each base – we drank the fizz for toasts at the wedding from them and have used them on our birthdays and anniversaries since)… and poured us each a glass of fizz. We had dance and a cry. It was wonderful.
*The End!* (of the proposal story… sorry it’s very long Amy is a wily one)
THE VISION | At the end of my PhD I was lucky enough to go to a conference in San Diego, and I was able to take Amy along with me. We loved the Mexican fusion culture, the bright colours, fresh food, and a great sense of fun. When we were deciding on a wedding theme we both agreed that the nautical theme would be very obvious and although we both live by and love the sea, didn’t feel right for us. Our time spent in San Diego was so magical and special so we decided we would try and recreate the vibe of the Old Town for our wedding.
BUDGET | £7,500
THE VENUE | St. Mary’s Lighthouse Whitley Bay, North Shields and Tynemouth Sailing Club, Tynemouth, North Shields.
We had big paella served with salad and fresh bread. For dessert we got mini ice cream cupcakes from one of our favourite bakeries, Pet Lamb Patisserie, which we handed out to our guests after we had finished the wedding breakfast.
THE DRESSES & ACCESSORIES | When we met up with friends we often got asked ‘who was wearing the dresses’. Although we are both very different shapes and sizes, we are both very much dress kinda gals. It was important to us that our dresses reflected our personality, but complemented each other.
Amy: Carolina Lace Wedding Dress by Phase Eight, I managed to get it on eBay for £175 which was 30% of the retail price.
Thea: I wanted something fun, that was easy to move around it but still had some beautiful details. I managed to find The Pearly Queen dress, a knee length dress with a vintage prom dress feel. It had a sequin/beaded lace bodice and full circle skirt tulle, it was by Kitty and Dulcie, and I found it on eBay for £100.
Amy has a wonderful eye for detail, so kept a Pinterest board of our wedding outfits. The majority of our jewellery came from Etsy. The only matching items we had were our nautical anchor and ship wheel earrings as a nod to the beautiful lighthouse we got married in. Amy had gold and I had silver. Amy had booked my wedding car as a surprise for the day, a beautiful bright teal 1954 Buick Special. Amy also managed to find some heeled sandals that matched the car perfectly… I took all the glory for this though!
I (Amy) wore a watch that I inherited from a great aunt as a baby, and wrapped a locket around my bouquet with a picture of my dad inside. He passed away when I was 18, so this was my way of having him walk me up the aisle.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | We had two readings, the first was read by Thea’s mum and was a quote about love from the French writer Guy de Maupassant. The second was read by the registrar and was a selected section from Admonitions To A Special Person by Anne Sexton.
We chose one of most favourite DJ’s in the Toon, The Funky Butt Club. We had a fusion of Latin tunes, old skool classics, funk, and soul.
We didn’t have a song that felt right for our first dance, so spent a long time trying to decide. Then we found Chrissie Hynde, ‘You or no one’. It was perfect, and didn’t feel like it had already been done. We had the first couple of minutes to just us, and then asked all our friends and family to come and join us. It felt so wonderful to be surrounded by so much love!
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | We are lucky enough to a have a great number of close friends from throughout our lives, therefore it didn’t feel right to select a bridal party, and didn’t go with our relaxed low key vibe we wanted for the wedding. We did however have a number of friends play special parts in our wedding day helping us set up the venues, and keeping the wedding day running smoothly.
THE FLOWERS | To save money we were planning on making our own bouquets, however Thea then got a got job down in Swansea. So as well as setting up a wedding, we were packing up our house, and getting ready to move 400 miles two days after the wedding. Making our own flowers therefore became a bit overwhelming, but luckily we found the wonderful Cosmic Flower shop. The majority of our guests said they were the most beautiful wedding bouquets they had ever seen, and we couldn’t agree more. They were beyond perfect!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Katie Byram Photography
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We spent a long time collating ideas on Pinterest to create some achievable ideas. We bought some beautiful Mexican papel picado from a Mexican supermarket online, we then made mini piñatas which we filled with sugared almonds for the table centres. We also bought some beautiful succulents and cacti from Ikea, and hand painted all our table runners.
We bought a set of custom PDFs for our wedding stationery on Etsy from the seller jadeANDeve. Amy’s company very kindly allowed us to do all the printing at her office as a wedding gift, and it was a great saving for the budget.
Thea is well known amongst her friends for making them mix CDs, therefore this was a cheap, personal, wedding favour.
At the lighthouse we had a DIY cocktail bar, and at the sailing club we hired Love is Sweet to provide popcorn and candyfloss.
THE HONEYMOON | We asked our guests for contributions towards our honeymoon, rather than gifts, so that we could have a once in a lifetime-type trip. Thankfully everyone was really happy to do that, so along with some of our own savings, we were able to afford a Secret Escapes package. We spent two weeks in Vietnam and Cambodia. The honeymoon was a bit of a whirlwind highlights tour. We began with three days in Hanoi, a very busy city in Northern Vietnam, then travelled up to Ha Long bay (on the border with China) and had a two day cruise (our boat was so posh – there was a jacuzzi in our bathroom. On a boat!) and then flew out to Cambodia, where we visited the temples of Angkor for three days. That was the absolute highlight of the honeymoon and we are very keen to revisit Cambodia. After Angkor we flew back to Vietnam, and spent seven days in Hoi An, an old city by the sea. Our hotel overlooked the ocean and it was the perfect relaxing way to end the honeymoon. I’d never travelled outside Europe or the States before and it’s definitely made me more confident. Revisiting Cambodia is a way off for us however, as we’ve just learned we will be moving to Hawaii in September! Thea’s been offered a job so we’re upping sticks again – we moved 400 miles to Wales two days after our wedding and now will be spending our one year anniversary packing up and living with our families at opposite ends of the country for various logistical reasons before flying off to live 7.5 thousand miles away!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Our ceremony was very personal to us and every moment was wonderful. St Mary’s Lighthouse has beautiful views overlooking a rocky coastline. I think the most memorable part for everyone there was when Thea announced that she had just spotted some seals mid way through the ceremony!
Seeing Amy for the first time in front of our wedding cars at the lighthouse.
Having all the most wonderful people in the same room, it was such a fantastic atmosphere.
Seeing our baby niece Martha take her first steps.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Try and take time to enjoy what is happening, as it is over in a flash! Make a spreadsheet of what you can afford, have a savings plan, don’t spend more than you have! Shop around, and be willing to compromise.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photography | Katie Byram Photography
Venue | St. Mary’s lighthouse
Reception | Tynemouth Sailing Club
Stationery | jadeANDeve
Flowers | Cosmic Flower Shop
Ahh, so perfect. Amy and Thea, thanks so much to you both for sharing your wedding story with us today xo Lou