I do love a spot of crochet and craft time. Not that I’ve had time mind due since W arrived 19 months ago. It’s something I hope to pick up again soon, I just need to find the right project to kick start my hobby.
Thomas and Rhianne were married on the 19th September and had a super crafty day. Wool and crochet dominated the décor, with crochet flowers and wool pom poms galore. It looked amazing in an array of rainbow colours alongside fairy lights. They chose to hold their reception at Piggyback Barns in Norfolk which was the perfect setting to their day.
Rhianne had two divine dresses, one short and flirty, the other sequins and glamour. Thomas donned a dashing suit, while the maids were in black with colour pop dresses. Ekkk.
Thanks so much to Katherine Mager for sharing these glorious images today.
THE PROPOSAL | There wasn’t one – originally we were planning a joint 30th birthday party and we realised that everyone we were inviting was the same people we’d want at a wedding – so we tackled two birds with one stone. Not very romantic I suppose but we’ve been together for 13 years now and we always knew we’d get married at some point, even if no one else believed it. It felt like it was the right time to do it, so we decided that we would together.
THE VISION | It was pretty simple really, we just wanted everyone together and to have fun – and that stuck throughout – we wrote a pub quiz, Thomas spent ages putting together music that we loved to listen to and we chose a venue where our family and friends could stay together and enjoy the weekend rather than just a day. If anyone asked me what the theme was I always said rainbows, love and happiness haha.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | We did a lot of the planning without anyone knowing we wanted to get married, we found the venue, contacted the church, discussed ideas and then when we did tell people – it was pretty much ready to go and so were we. From there it was just a process of getting things done.
Also, spreadsheets are your friend at the beginning – make all the lists. Our corrupted two weeks before the wedding (back it up peeps!) but by that point we were nearly there anyway.
THE VENUE | We got married in Thomas’s family church – and it was so full of love, history and happiness.
The rest of the wedding was held at Piggyback Barns in Norfolk where we rented the three barns for people to stay in and also the event room for the reception/party. We had two days before to decorate and we took full advantage of that time and completely decked it out and transformed the room into something magical with a lot of fairy lights and pom poms.
We spent the morning getting ready at the barn with everyone we wanted around us which was so comforting and headed straight back after the ceremony again for food, speeches and fun!
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | White dress: eBay.
Gold dress: Hobbs of London.
Headpiece and belt: Made by a very talented friend who sourced vintage buttons for me (including a blue one for my something blue) and we put it all together one weekend drinking lots of tea and playing with her puppy.
Shoes: Dorothy Perkins – I’d only worn them once before at my sisters wedding – so they were the perfect something old.
Gold bracelet: My something borrowed from my Mum.
Fitbit Flex: I wear my Fitbit every day and mostly I was curious how many steps I would have on my wedding day, so I kept it on as well. It was just under 8,000 if anyone is interested. The vicar also wore his bright green one on the day too ha.
FINDING THE DRESS | I had two dresses – a white dress for the church service and a gold Oscar worthy dress for as soon as we got to the venue. The first I bought the day after we talked about it being a wedding instead of a 30th birthday party – and it was £30 on Ebay – and so perfect – I hid it for about a year from everyone as it was still just an inkling of an idea and I knew that my Mum would not be happy with me – and she wasn’t haha. One because I bought it without her and two that it was only £30. She was worried it would look like cheap but honestly, after a little TLC, it felt like it was worth so much more.
My second dress was my party dress, a long sequin gold dress – and even though looking back I’m still amazed I wore it, on the day I couldn’t have worn anything else and I felt amazing in it.
I went shopping with both my parents and my best friend at the York Design Outlet – I only had a small budget and I knew I wasn’t looking for a wedding dress – In fact I didn’t go into any wedding dress shops at all for my dresses.
At first it was actually quite frustrating as I felt like it was the time to find it – but the first few shops we couldn’t find anything and I was starting to panic – then we spotted the black version of my dress in the window of Hobbs and thought it was lovely. Whilst I was trying the black version on, my Mum got chatting to the assistant in the shop and they told her – that dress actually comes in gold too – but we only have one left in the back, it’s a size 12. My size! So of course I tried it on and then I went to show my Dad on the shop floor – and I just cried on him – it was the one and it was perfect, we all knew it. Even two random people in the shop stopped to tell me how lovely the dress looked and once my Mum told all the assistants that it was my wedding dress, it got a little crazy with enthusiasm haha – they so carefully wrapped my dress up in tissue paper and were so kind.
I know most women don’t shop with their Dad but we’ve always been close and it felt right to have him and my Mum there too. We then celebrated with a McDonalds. Classy.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Thomas chose everything he wanted. We went shopping together where he bought the first suit he saw pretty much from Jeff Banks, he chose his shirt from TM Lewin and his tie and pocket square on Amazon – and then when he tried them all together, it looked so effortlessly amazing. He also found his shoes on Amazon as well.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | We struggled to find a church reading we completely loved – but finally we agreed on Romans 12 9-21 which started with ‘Let love be genuine’ – and really, we could have had just that one line but luckily we liked the rest of the passage too. Our second reading was ‘The Awesome Book of Love’ by Dallas Clayton – which one of my dearest friends sent me as a gift a couple of years ago – and it makes me cry every time I read it – especially now. One of our friends who went to college with Thomas and then Uni with me read it and I gave her the biggest hug afterwards (even if you’re not meant to do that haha), it was beautiful and so fitting.
Music has always been a big part of our relationship – Thomas adores music and he used to make me mix tapes and CDs all the time – one song that he put on a CD was ‘Here comes the sun’ by The Beatles – so we chose Beatles music for whilst we signed the register. Thomas also put together all the music for the day and the evening and we hired a Disco System to play it through.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had my sister, my two best friends and my cousin as bridesmaids. I knew I wanted them in black dresses to match my black and white theme for the church and I knew I wanted them all to have an accent colour. The older bridesmaids each had colours that matched their own wedding themes and my younger cousin had red and pink – two colours she loves. Everyone chose their own dresses and shoes, I wanted them to be comfortable and love how they looked, we then found coordinating sashes on eBay and I made their necklaces using gemstones and tassels.
THE FLOWERS | We only had real flowers in the church and our only request for those was ‘colourful’ which the Church florists definitely pulled off. We took one feature piece back to the barns for the top table but the rest we left for the church to keep.
The bouquets I made myself with crochet flowers, some vintage buttons and a lot of pins. I have no idea how long I spent on them – so many hours but I didn’t really care about that when I made it. They turned out exactly as I pictured in my head.
The buttonholes were made with my sister and a friends help, but the main part was crochet flowers as well, held together with wire and ribbon and finished with a feature button to match the bouquets and my ring.
The ‘flowers’ for the centrepieces were pom poms on sticks. My Mother-in-Law and I made SO MANY pom poms before the wedding – we had them on sticks, hanging around the venue, in vases and still enough left over for a pom pom throw in the group photo.
THE CAKE | My lovely best friend made our cake – she wanted to make something ‘weddingy’ and showed us a naked cake which we both agreed looked stunning and we chose the flavours we wanted – the bottom was heavenly chocolate, the middle was ginger and salted caramel (which was my fave!) and the top was a Victoria sponge. I liked the idea of it being a slight ombre cake starting with a darker base and getting light as you went up and Clare then decorated it beautifully with fruit.
We also ended up with so many cakes that other guests brought too – which I was so pleased about – the highlight being a macaroon cake baked by a previous Masterchef contestant. We were eating cake for a few days after the wedding that’s for sure.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | The lovely Katherine Mager. I spent ages trying to find a wedding photographer on Google and in the end I stumbled on Kat’s site through a random ‘Norfolk weddings’ board on Pinterest and I knew almost straight away that we needed her to take our photos. Kat also loves film photography like I do and agreed to take film photos for us as well as digital which I was thrilled about.
One of my favourite things is the way she captured not just the beauty of little details (which I am all about) – but the beauty of happiness and love in people. It takes something special in someone to see that in others and capture it but somehow that’s what Kat does, not just in our photos but every one wedding photo I’ve seen of hers. She doesn’t just capture what she sees but the emotions and the love too.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | The décor was a mixture of ideas we’d seen and loved – we knew we wanted a lot of fairy lights and colour to start with and we went from there. We really wanted to do something with the ceiling to make it feel a bit more eventful rather than just an empty space and I saw an image on Pinterest (of course) with ribbons and fairy lights which we ended up doing with florist ribbon and 200m of fairy lights – that took a whole day to hang up and maybe 30 minutes to take down – typical.
The tables echoed the black and white ribbons with a white paper cloth and black runners – and the colour was introduced with the mismatched vases (sourced from various charity shops by Thomas’s parents) and everyone got their own crochet doily (which I also made). We collected the beer mats from pubs where we lived as we wanted a little bit of Leeds in Norfolk.
Again I’d seen the branches with pom poms on Pinterest and as well as hanging them behind the top table we also constructed ‘trees’ from the branches we had and made feature displays with them as you walked in and at the end of the space.
Considering it was a huge mismatch of small ideas brought together and an odd balance of white, black and gold with a lot of colour and wool thrown on top, we were so incredibly thrilled with the results – it really reflected how much work everyone had put into it – not just us but everyone who helped source things and helped decorate.
THE HONEYMOON | We had a week in Norfolk with our family at the barns after the wedding and then a mini moon in Hebden Bridge once we were back in Yorkshire – and next year we’re planning a holiday in the sun but we haven’t booked anything yet.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Everything! I know it’s a cliché but everything was perfect. All our hard work paid off, all our family and friends were so happy to be there with us and we just went along for the ride. The ceremony was funny, lovely, happy and wonderful. The speeches were incredible – we cried, guests cried, we laughed, guests laughed. It was just a perfect day all around, we didn’t want it to end.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Have the wedding you want and try not to please everyone (you can’t and won’t). Please yourselves and everyone else will love it too. We had a lot of people tell us how unique, fun and great our wedding was because we did what we wanted. Prepare to fight for what you want though and really stick to your gut with it. Its going to be hard but it will be worth it.
Don’t worry if something isn’t ‘weddingy’ – its easy to get caught up in it all – so easy. But embrace the unique things that you love about each other and share it with your family and friends even if they don’t quite understand it at first.
If it gets really hard and stressful, remember why you’re doing it – you’re marrying the person you love. Go for a walk together, go out for dinner… just do something together that isn’t about the wedding for a few hours and enjoy each other’s company.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | Katherine Mager
Venue | Piggyback Barns
Bar | Crabbman Bars
Disco System| Disco DJ Hire Norwich
Hairdresser | Vanity Hair
Hog Roast | Van Pelt Butchers
Furniture | The Banqueting Hire Service
Wedding Rings | W H Hammond
Thanks so much to Thomas and Rhianne for sharing their wonderful story xo Lou