Happy Friday folks! I hope you have a lovely weekend planned, before you head off to enjoy yourself in the (hopefully) sunny weather, let me introduce you to Chloe and Matthew, who were married on the 6th October 2018 at Cowdray House in West Sussex. I just have to quote how they described their day to me, as it really is just so lovely;
It was quite simply the best day of our lives, filled with so much emotion, love and laughter that we’ll remember forever.
Not only was their day totally meaningful, but it was oh so beautiful too. The country house venue was perfect for their vision as it enabled them to use different areas for different parts of the day and also had accommodation for their guests. They dressed the venue perfectly with a lot of florals. There was the fireplace mantelpiece adorned with flowers, the aisle decorated with greenery and tall arrangements on the tables too. The bouquets were just breathtaking, featuring dahlias and roses in blush and burgundy tones. Also look out for super stylish outfits and a rustic semi naked cake.
Thanks goes to the brilliant Matt Sim Photography for sharing with us these remarkable photographs today.
Matt whisked me away on a surprise trip to Nice for the weekend and got down on one knee just before we headed out to dinner for the evening. I cried so much I barely even registered the ring and had to redo the mess I’d made of my make up before we could head out to celebrate!
We both love it when the trees turn a beautiful burnt orange and red so we decided straight away on an autumn wedding where we could use these colours. Other than that we just wanted to have everyone we love around us and have fun!
The Planning Process
We’re both fairly organised people and were pretty methodical about the planning. There were many many spreadsheets and to do lists involved which helped us make sure that we stayed on top of all the little details as well as the big pieces.
Our caterers, Jacaranda also had an event manager Phern who helped tie everything together and was absolutely fantastic on the day making sure things ran smoothly.
Cowdray House in Midhurst, West Sussex.
All the other venues we looked at required us to compromise somewhere whilst Cowdray offered us everything we wanted from a practical level as well as being absolutely stunning. It had enough space for our guests (just about), multiple areas which were suitable for the ceremony, drinks, dinner and dancing and weren’t weather dependent (thankfully as it poured!) and enough bedrooms for a lot of our guests to stay but with the added benefit of privacy thanks to it being a house rather than a hotel. We also really appreciated the fact Cowdray only host a limited number of weddings a year compared to some venues who left us feeling like we would be fitted into their conveyor belt of weddings.
Your Outfits & Accessories
My dress was the Macedonia by San Patrick purchased through Amorae Bridal in Ongar who gave such attention to detail on the alterations there wasn’t an inch of it I didn’t love by the time they were through.
My veil was “my something borrowed” from my bridesmaid Tor who got married 6 months before me and my shoes were Jimmy Choo.
I also wore a second dress for the BBQ we had the following day which was from Chi Chi London.
Hair was done by Samantha Mason (@samanthamacmason) and make up by Katherine Kelsing (@kkelsing1). Both of whom were just incredible and made us all feel amazing and so comfortable on the day.
I had two maids of honour because the three of us are such close friends I couldn’t possibly choose between them, then I also had two bridesmaids and a flower girl. The maids of honour and bridesmaids all wore the same dress (Style 3012 by Dessy) but I had the maids of honour in the ivory shade and the bridesmaids in Palomino. It was not an obvious contrast but a subtle difference in shade that I think worked really well across the five of us.
Matt had his brother and best friend as joint best men and then three ushers and a page boy. The suits were from TM Lewin with Reiss accessories.
The Naked Food Company made us a 4 tiered naked wedding cake in 3 different flavours (Cherry & Almond / Strawberries & Cream / Lemon & Lavender).
The Readings & Music
We had a string quartet for the ceremony and reception and then an amazing band for the evening. My brother is a session drummer and pulled in a lot of favours to get a group of extremely talented musicians together for us.
Matt Sim (@mattsimphoto) was our photographer who was so relaxed and cheerful that he felt like more of a friend than anything else on the day which was perfect for me. I’ve been to a lot of weddings where the stress from a photographer impacts the vibe for the guests and I can’t think of anything worse than being asked to do cringy poses for hours instead of spending time with everyone. Despite barely remembering the photos being taken I’ve ended up with hundreds of photos I absolutely adore and that’s a credit to Matt’s professionalism and skill!
So much credit for the atmosphere on the day has to go to our florist Jenni Bloom (@jennibloomflowers) who I could tell instantly understood our vision and has so much passion for what she does that I felt I could trust her from the start and she did not disappoint! I didn’t want the arrangements to be too structured or rigid and I received so many compliments on the romantic flowing nature of our bouquets. She transformed the fireplace, making it a perfect backdrop to the ceremony and we ate under what felt like a canopy of rich autumn leaves.
The Details & Décor
Our florist Jenni took care of a lot of the details providing candles and lanterns to go alongside all her beautiful floral displays. We also had a gin bar and sweets station to keep both the children and adults happy.
We weren’t planning to have a videographer but our amazing friends bought us “Shoot it yourself” as a wedding present and it was the best present ever. Shoot it yourself provide you with 2 video cameras which your guests can use to film the day and then they do all the editing and create the perfect wedding video from the footage taken. It’s brilliant because the footage captured by friends is always going to be much more personal than that caught by a stranger!
Two days after the wedding we jetted off to New Zealand where we hired a camper van and spent 8 days travelling around the South Island, followed by 4 nights on the North. We finished off with a week on Tokoriki island just off of Fiji. Over the 3 week period we experienced such a variety of things from skiing and helicopter rides, to wine tasting and idyllic beaches so we were never once bored, it was such a fantastic trip!
I’ll never forget the walk down the aisle, it was incredibly intense but in a good way. It required every bit of strength to hold back floods of tears!
The fairly intoxicated drive away from all the sparkler waving guests in a golf buggy covered with fairy lights was hilarious but I think overall my favourite was all the dancing; we had an amazing band and we carried on dancing on the chairs and tables until the early hours.
Advice For Other Couples
Make sure you get suppliers you can trust, they can make or break the day and however stressful you’re finding the planning, persevere! It is so worth it.
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Matt Sim Photography
7 piece band put together specifically for the wedding by Chloe’s brother
Oh my, so gorgeous.
Chloe and Matthew thank you both so very much for sharing your divine wedding with us xo Lou