Oh I do so love a village hall wedding, especially one that’s as summery and bohemian as Emily and Richard’s day which took place on 18th August 2018 at Broughton Parish Rooms in Staffordshire. Our pair really wanted to make it their own and I’m really ever so impressed with all the DIY.
Emily is a florist herself and created lots of the floral creations for the day, I just love the wild and meadowy vibe, so boho. I think you’re also going to love the banner decor at the hall and of course gin bottles looking fabulous as vases!
Love & Bloom were in charge of photography on the day and didn’t they do a great job of capturing the fun and laughter? Thank you so much for sharing these beautiful images with us today.
Rick: Emily’s birthday present trip to Paris seemed like the perfect opportunity to pop the question.The proposal happened in January 2017 on a bench beneath the steps of the Sacre Coeur on the last night of a trip to Paris for Emily’s Birthday. (Although the location was never planned, I’d have definitely saved myself a lot of angst by doing it on the first night.)
Emily: Everybody always says to me “How did you not know he was going to propose on a surprise trip to Paris?!” but honestly – I did not have a clue! I had always wanted to go to Paris, so getting the trip booked as a birthday present was the most wonderful surprise. We had quite a lot going on at the time, so I was just thankful for a short break away to spend some time together. Plus, he left it until the last night so it really took me off guard! It was perfect, we had spent the day wandering around arty Montmartre, and after watching the sunset at the Sacre Coeur, he turned to me and popped the question – I was absolutely gobsmacked! I think my initial response was something along the lines of “Are you being serious?” but of course this was quickly followed up with an almighty YES!
After exploring different options available to us, we decided that we wanted a weekend summer wedding that would be relatively local to make it easier for our friends and family to attend. We also wanted an option which would give us as few restrictions as possible (i.e. no corkage, own choice of suppliers, venue decoration and beloved canine guests) and allow us to put our personal touches into every detail.
The Planning Process
As we wanted to get married within two years of the engagement and leave ourselves more money to spend on the honeymoon, it often at times felt a little daunting as it didn’t give us much time to save up. After looking at various venues and weighing up costs, we realised that to have a weekend wedding with everything we wanted within budget, we’d need to opt for a DIY option.
After much deliberation we set upon the idea to have the ceremony at a nearby Church which has a has a significance within Rick’s family, and then move onto a Village Hall about 20 minutes away for the reception.
We were also very lucky to have a talented group of friends who we could call on to help out with various areas from design to catering, so the whole planning process developed into a full year long project.
We set ourselves a budget of £10,000 but knew that we’d have to be flexible, and we think the overall cost probably came in closer to £12,000. (This didn’t include the Honeymoon!)
We were so lucky to be able to get married in our selected church, a beautiful small and intimate venue which dates back to the 11th century. We were able to marry here due to good connections with Rick’s family, with multiple christenings, weddings and funerals from the family taking place here.
The reception took place at a village hall in Eccleshall, Broughton Parish Rooms, which is about 20 minutes away from the church. The hall was one of the largest and brightest village halls we could find, and had an easily accessible field at the back where we wanted to include a tipi. We later found out that the field was not owned by the village hall, however we contacted the farmer who owned it and he happily agreed to allow us to use it for our wedding, which was very kind of him!
Chase Tipi’s provided the tipi which we had in the field, which worked perfectly. We knew from the offset we wanted an outdoor area for people to go to, with it being a summer wedding we didn’t want people to be stuck indoors when it was so hot, so the tipi worked perfectly. The bar which was provided by The Estate Boys was set up in the tipi, as well as benches and hay bales for outdoor seating. This worked perfectly as it created a flow of people in and out of the venue, and we were very fortunate with the weather on the day.
Your Outfits & Accessories
Emily: I had never imagined that I would want a two-piece for my wedding dress, and when I was at Frock & Soul, the most gorgeous bohemian boutique in Saddleworth, I hadn’t even picked it up to try on – it’s thanks to my bridesmaid Jess for picking it up and getting me to try it! As soon as I tried on the lace top and silk georgette skirt combo by Theia, I absolutely fell in love with it. The skirt was just amazing, with multiple layers of beautifully cut silk, it was full of movement (so swooshy) yet super comfortable. They say when you have found “the dress” you don’t want to take it off and that’s exactly how I felt – I just knew that was the one!
I also got my cathedral veil from Frock & Soul, by Linzi Jay. Getting my dress was definitely the highlight of the planning process for me. Bekka, the owner of Frock & Soul, was absolutely amazing throughout the whole process. Sadly, she has now moved away from bridalwear and has turned the boutique into Suki’s Wardrobe, a luxury womenswear boutique – however the store is still beautiful and definitely worth a visit!
For my shoes I knew that I wanted flats but struggled to find a pair I loved -I eventually got a cute pair of gold strappy flat sandals from Topshop about 2 weeks before the wedding.
On the day I also wore a heart bracelet from my maid of honour and a black leather jacket borrowed from one of my bridesmaids. My favourite accessory was definitely the fresh flower crown of roses, thistle & foliage – I absolutely loved it! It was made by local florist Helen’s Flower House.
The groom and best man suits were petrol blue wool blend in Herringbone, with the shoes also coming from ASOS. The grooms shirt was from Zara and the groomsmen ties were from DickieBow.co.uk. There was no real preference for suit, we just wanted something to compliment the bridesmaid dresses and the general colour palette of the decoration. The wool blend material suited the aesthetics and looked great, but was very hot on the day!
My local hair salon, Socio Hair & Beauty, did mine and all of the bridesmaids hair. I had a loose chunky halo braid with my flower crown fitted in front, while the bridesmaids had a side braid with an updo, with rose & thistle stems threaded in.
For my make up, I knew I wanted to keep a fairly natural look, with a nude lip. Becky, the owner of the salon, did my make up, while Lauren from Bronze & Beautyful, did the make-up for the bridesmaids.
My nails were done in a pale pink with gold strips from my regular nail technician, Lauren.
The Readings & Music
Emily: I walked down to the aisle to Songbird by Fleetwood Mac – one of my most favourite songs.
As we were married in a church, we selected a few hymns for the service. We had “Morning Has Broken”, “One More Step Along The World I Go” & “Give Me Joy In My Heart”.
While we were signing the register, we had If You Need To, Keep Time on Me by Fleet Foxes.
Rick’s sister Sophie (also a bridesmaid) kindly did a reading for us from Captain Corelli’s mandolin – “Love is a temporary madness…”
Praise You by Fatboy Slim played as we left the church.
Emily: I knew from the offset that although I wanted a mauve colour palette, I also wanted the bridesmaids in different dresses. They are all different in shape, height & personal style, so I wanted to make sure they all had an input. After ordering *many* dresses we eventually found the winning combo. All dresses were from ASOS and I think they each looked beautiful! They all wore their own shoes of strappy high sandals.
Emily: As I have my own floristry business, Wilderness Floral Design, I knew that I wanted to try and do as many of the flowers myself. I decided to ask another local florist, Helen’s Flower House, to create my floral crown and the flowers for the bridesmaids’ hair – and I am so glad I did, she did an absolutely wonderful job and I loved my flower crown!
I selected a variation of flowers including roses of different varieties, thistle and daisies for my bouquet, including mauve antique roses which matched up with the bridesmaids dresses. However, I didn’t keep the colours too strict in the bouquet – I wanted some bright pops of colour to reflect the festival / summer theme! I also used a lot of foliage, including seeded eucalyptus, to create a big, unstructured bouquet with lots of movement.
The bridesmaid bouquets were smaller versions of my bouquet, and we created small posies for the two flower girls.
For the groomsmen and parents/grandparents, we made buttonholes from thistle, astilbe and asparagus fern.
In keeping with the festival / DIY style, for the reception venue we included a selection of brightly coloured flowers in unusual gin bottles on the tables, positioned on rustic log slices.
In the church, we kept the flowers fairly minimal due to there being another wedding taking place later that day. We had a eucalyptus garland around the pulpit, with pew ends of eucalyptus and thistle tied with rustic raffia ribbon and two vases on a table behind the altar with roses, thistles and stocks.
Rick: As there were six groomsmen in total including two best men, deciding how to get us all to match created a bit of a headache as I didn’t want to ask people to buy suits especially nor could I afford to buy for everyone. I eventually decided to purchase the two Best Men suits to match mine (they both put a bit towards them), and asked the Ushers to wear dark blue suits with white shirts and shoes. One of the Ushers actually purchased the same suit as we had shortly before the big day.
I then bought seven ties within three different complimentary colours for us all, and along with the button holes created a subtle match between us all.
Emily: Our photographers from Love & Bloom Photography were absolutely amazing on the wedding day – they made us feel so comfortable throughout. They managed to get some beautiful candid shots capturing some really special moments, which for us was perfect as we wanted more of these opposed to getting the standard posed shots.
Emily: My friend Abi is an extremely talented baker and she very kindly offered to make our wedding cake for us which we were thrilled about. In keeping with the rustic style, we had a three tier lemon flavour semi-naked cake decorated with flowers – it was delicious! The cake topper was a bit of last minute purchase from Hobbycraft!
The Details & Décor
The decoration of the hall started two days prior to the Wedding on the Thursday, with help from friends and family along the way.
We purchased a roll of ivory voile which we draped from the ceiling beams and worked a LOT fairy lights between them. Between these were three artificial floral hoops hung with invisible wire.
Having only long tables in the hall the tables, these were laid out in three long rows, and decorated using wild flowers in gin bottles from local bars and candles sat upon yew tree log slices.
Behind the top table featured a banner with a line from the song we exited the church, which was kindly made for us by Pretty Pricks, another local florist and venue stylist. We also included two giant helium balloons either side of the banner with ivy garlands trailing from each.
The field decorations took inspiration from music festivals visited over the years, including festoon lights, hand painted signs, hay bales as well as space hoppers and games for the children (though these were soon hijacked by older guests).
The tipi decoration was organised and styled by the Chase Tipis, which featured a lot of twinkly fairy lights, a fire pit (with plenty of marshmallows for toasting!) and seating which included benches and a couple of dark green Chesterfield sofas.
Straight after the Wedding we decided to take a short mini-moon break in the Yorkshire Dales, and booked a luxury yurt with the Wensleydale Experience. Set in a secluded woodland area, the yurt opened out into a stunning view across the valley towards Bolton Castle which we never got tired of waking up to, or looking across from the wood fired hot tub. The yurt was well kitted out with a BBQ, gas stove and mini kitchen area and the owners made us feel welcome throughout our stay.
To give us time to save a little more money, our main honeymoon took place over Christmas and New Year where we visited New Zealand, Fiji and Hong Kong over about four weeks. Splitting our three weeks in New Zealand across the North and South islands, we then spent six nights in the Serenity Island resort in Fiji before stopping off in Hong Kong for three nights on our way back.
Rick: Despite a few minor hiccups, the day itself ran pretty smoothly though we ran behind our planned schedule for most of it. It definitely wasn’t without memorable moments though, like when Stella the Staffordshire Bull Terrier cut loose and stormed the stairs during Sophie’s reading. Other moments included Becky accidentally pulling Emily’s veil off, Josh forgetting to stop the music while we were signing the register (meaning Fatboy Slim started playing while we were signing the register!) due to chatting up the bridesmaids and of course the speeches.
Emily: For me, the most memorable part of the whole day was probably when I arrived at the church and walked down the aisle to Rick. I was so completely overcome with emotion – I was ecstatic, nervous, excited and most of all felt so lucky. When I got to the altar, I thought I had managed to compose myself, but then when I heard the whole church burst into song with our first hymn, I was set off crying again (happy tears!) – I was just so happy that everybody we loved was there celebrating with us.
Advice For Other Couples
* Don’t feel like you have to follow the strict “traditional rules” – its your day, do what you want to do.
* Accept that things may (and almost certainly will) run behind
* If you opt for a DIY wedding (where there is no one employed to run the proceeding’s) nominate someone as an MC to control the order of the day and keep things moving.
* Enjoy every moment – it goes so quickly!
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Love & Bloom
Groom & Best Men Suits
So so beautiful! Thank you so much Emily and Rick for sharing your gorgeous relaxed day with us here at WWW. Rachel x