Today’s real wedding feature encompasses everything I love. An outdoor woodland ceremony, ethereal styling and all the colours. Hooray! WWW readers Katie and Mex were wed on Friday 24th August 2019 at The Dreys in Kent. Following their woodland ceremony they headed to a rustic pole tent marquee decked out in gorgeous touches for their party. Their day was a fusion of festival and A Midsummer Night’s Dream style, with nods to Wes Anderson films, complete with macramé, Persian rug and dream catcher décor to name a few. What a dream!
Framing their ceremony was a stunning willow moon gate flower arch, which really added drama to the already stunning setting. Talking of flowers, they were all very magnificent, Katie’s cascading bouquet really was a show stopper and I adore the suspended greenery arrangement in the marquee. Wow. Other elements I am coveting are the bridal painted leather jacket, the pastel bridesmaid dresses, smoke bombs, banner sign and the painted pebbles. In fact there is too much amazingness to mention it all, so I shall leave you with the incredible photographs and film by Grace & Mitch Photo & Film, which we are ever so grateful to be sharing with you.
Mex surprised me with a trip to the Cotswolds in early December 2016. Lots of wet walks and pub lunches… perfect. We went for dinner in a gorgeous castle near our cottage one night. We were enjoying a nightcap when Mex said he needed to pop out for a bit… I was sat there wondering what he was up to so I went back to the cottage to find he’d decorated the room with candles and fairy lights. There was a record player playing Le Temps de L’amour by Francois Hardy and we danced together before he got down on one knee. We spent the rest of the evening drinking champagne and watching Peep Show… the one where Mark proposes to Sophie on the Quantox. It felt appropriate.
We basically wanted to have a party in the woods. We met at a festival so it only felt right to be outside with all our friends having a good time.
The Planning Process
We had a good 18 months to plan. We found the venue by April and booked Grace & Mitch, our photographers, not long after. The last 8 weeks felt manic, but we loved it really. I made tonnes of lists and recruited the help of as many friends and family as possible.
The Dreys, Kent
The staff at The Dreys are amazing. You basically have your own production designer on hand who comes up with the coolest ideas. Big shout out to Jo!
Our closest friends stayed with us after the wedding in cute shepherd huts and tents. We all had breakfast together the next day. It was so much fun reliving the day together in a drunken haze.
Your Outfits & Accessories
Dress: Adrianna Pappell Platinum from Precious Moments, Rayleigh, Essex
I tried on what felt like 400 dresses. I still think about the ones that could have been
Shoes: ASOS – absolute bargain – I had to throw them in the bin after as they were filthy! The sign of a good night, I say!
Jewellery: I borrowed my jewellery from friends.
Fai Archer Hair & Makeup
Fai is an absolute star. She works predominantly in film and TV and was absolutely brilliant. She’s not only hugely talented, she’s a gorgeous person to know.
The Readings & Music
Walking down the aisle: True Love Will Find You by Wilco
Just Married: Five Years Time by Noah & the Whale
First Dance: The Wonder of You by Elvis (The Villagers version)
Michelle Funky Celebrant was our celebrant. If you’re not having a conventional wedding, I highly recommend her. We told her our story and she turned it into a gorgeous tale. We wrote our own vows, which was a joy and everyone said it was unlike any service they’d ever attended. We’re geeks at heart so we had plenty of Harry Potter references in there, including a cheeky “mischief managed” at the end.
Our guests sang Elvis’ ‘Can’t Help Falling in Love With You’, which was fun.
Our friend Emma read a passage from The Amber Spyglass by Phillip Pullman and my brother Michael read an excerpt from The Bridge Across Forever by Richard Bach.
My auntie Lesley made our cake. It was fruit cake on the bottom and lemon cake on top. It was stunning and delicious!
The Details & Décor
Purples, pinks, golds, yellows, oranges, greens. Wild bright summer colours!
We had a mix of styles with some Persian rugs in the ceremony area, lanterns, macramé hanging from the trees and some homemade floral dreamcatchers.
We bought a lot of our ‘bits’ from home because it all fit the theme.
I made the table settings, which were Wes Anderson films. My Mum made the favours for our guests, which were individual personalized rocks. People were really in to them.
I also designed festival style ‘order of service’ for the day.
I wanted the girls in a mix of styles. They’re all so beautiful, they looked great in everything they tried!
Jennis & Warmann
Sue Davies Flowers.
Sue works closely with The Dreys for all their gardening and floristry. She is an artist! She went above and beyond for our flower designs. When we first sat down, she asked me what our colour scheme was and I simply said “ALL THE COLOURS!” She was delighted and went crazy. Her bouquet was INSANE! It weighed a tonne. She also designed my floral head garland, which was stunning.
Grace of Grace & Mitch.
Grace was the first and only photographer I contacted. I saw her incredible photographs on a wedding blog and knew immediately that I wanted her to capture our day. Her images are the perfect mix of reportage and gorgeous staging. She managed to encapsulate a feeling and I can’t thank her enough for immortalising the day.
Mitch of Grace & Mitch.
We received so many compliments on our wedding video. It’s absolutely stunning and never fails to make me cry. Grace and Mitch are just perfect. Not only are they unbelievably talented, they’re lovely people. They’re also married! #CoupleGoals
South Africa and Mauritius.
- The ceremony <3
- The band – The Hype – were incredible. We wanted our guests to be dancing all night and they definitely were!
- The speeches, they were hilarious and emotional.
- The fireworks.
- Dancing around the firepit (even if I did burn my dress!)
- The best man singing ‘alouette’ on the dancefloor to me.
Advice For Other Couples
- Try to enjoy the planning, the creative bits. Make lists!
- Don’t spend too much time on Pinterest. As much as it’s a god send for inspiration and beautiful imagery, it can also make you feel slightly inadequate and like your vision is unachievable. What if we don’t get that beautiful sunset, what if I don’t look as beautiful?! It’s your day and it’ll be beautiful for so many other reasons than being ‘Pinterest worthy’.
- Everyone says this but try to find some time together amongst the chaos. Hold hands and look back on the day you’ve created.
- DO A SPEECH! Every bride should do a speech. You’ll feel incredible afterwards.
- Book your photographer straight away!
- Hire a videographer. It may be an additional cost, but it’s better to spend it on that than a fancy car!
- Spend more money on your food than you want to. We skimped on ours and I regret it.
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Photographer & Videographer
Grace & Mitch Photo & Film
Hair & Makeup
Groom & Groomsmen
Jennis & Warmann
Michelle Funky Celebrant
Sue Davies Flowers
The Humble Pie Company
The Hype -They were awesome. They played a great mix of rock, indie and pop. We sang our hearts out and danced the night away.
The Perfect Wedding Shop – Our close friends Simon & Katie did all our gorgeous signage.
So epic! And how much do I adore Katie and Mex’s outfit choices too? They looked gorgeous.
Huge thanks to Katie and Mex for sharing their absolutely awesome wedding celebrations xo Lou