By Valentina Ring
Fields of wildflowers, warm Summer air dancing through the forest, and a fire performer – these are just some of the things gracing our blog today, by means of the whimsical wedding of Richard and Tamsin – a day full of joy, character, and glorious genuineness.
Deep in the heart of the Norfolk countryside, nestled at the top of the Yare Valley in the Broads National Park, sits the beautifully wild wedding venue Hush Venues where the couple chose to celebrate their marriage with their loved ones. They wanted a day focused on relaxation, happiness, and natural beauty, and we can’t imagine a more authentic tribute to love than the one captured in these images by Suzi Reed. The couple wanted guests to experience a journey in the forest, guided by quirky signs and multicoloured paper pom poms along the way. Hidden down a series of winding tracks, awaited the magical setting of the ceremony – The Olde Woodshed in the secluded woodland of Elderwood, with stunning views across the valley. The story continued then in a giant hat tipi in the meadow, adorned with sunflowers and yellow roses, heart-shaped balloons, and lots more joyful festival-feel décor – all lovingly coordinated with the mustard and green suit the groom had had his heart set on for years. The guests were then treated to a delicious vegan meal, a naked lemon and elderflower cake lovingly made by the bride herself, unique origami keepsakes… and even a fire performance under the stars!
Enjoy the gallery, and get ready to smile all the way through!
THE PROPOSAL | A series of surprises. Tamsin had planned Valentine’s Day the previous year so I said that I would plan this years. I told her nothing in advance, then on the day the first surprise was that I had bought tickets for us to go to London from Cambridge. We went to an exhibition during the day then went for a vegan meal near the West End. Afterwards, while walking through Theatreland, I said to Tamsin, “wouldn’t it be great if we had tickets to see a show!”. I then grabbed her by the hand and took her into the theatre, where we saw a horror show. Which might not seem that romantic, but I knew it would be Tamsin’s thing! After the show, whilst walking to the tube station, I said, “wouldn’t it be great if we had a hotel room booked!” When we got into the room, there were flowers and a bottle of vegan wine on the bed. I proposed to Tamsin on one knee, and to my utter delight she said yes!
THE VISION | We wanted a relaxed, happy, summer wedding and were determined to have it outdoors! We knew this meant that we were at the mercy of the elements, but decided to cross our fingers and hope for the best! Tamsin had always wanted to get married in a forest, we both have hippy tendencies and felt that being married outdoors, close to nature would suit both our personalities.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | We planned our wedding over two years. We didn’t want to rush it and be too stressed (and of course needed time to save up the money!). As it turns out, the most difficult thing to organise was Richard’s suit… After seeing Colin Firth get married in a mustard and green suit in a film many years earlier, Richard had determined that he wanted to get married in the same! This, evidently, wasn’t the easiest to find and meant that the rest of the colour scheme had to revolve around this vibrant choice.
THE VENUE | Hush Venues, Postwick.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Tamsin’s dress was from Phase Eight. She tried it on, loved it, then got it altered to fit. The hairpiece was from Accessorize and the earrings and shoes were also a high street find.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Angel’s Costumes. This company had actually provided the original suit worn by Colin Firth in the film, what a find!
THE READINGS & MUSIC |
“I no longer believed in the idea of soul mates, or love at first sight. But I was beginning to believe that a very few times in your life, if you were lucky, you might meet someone who was exactly right for you. Not because he was perfect, or because you were, but because your combined flaws were arranged in a way that allowed two separate beings to hinge together.”
― Lisa Kleypas, Blue-Eyed Devil
Music: Chance the Rapper- Arthur Theme Song
First Dance Music: Cat Power- Sea of Love
Evening Music: Electro Swing
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | Darta & Steph, who were very helpful! Dresses from Warehouse, ribbon supplied by Steph, and shoes from the high street.
THE FLOWERS | Lovely Darta surprised us with the flowers as a wedding gift. We had a variety of yellow flowers including sunflowers for the ceremony and yellow roses for the table centrepieces.
THE CAKE | Tamsin loves baking and spent months working on flavours. She always knew that she wanted to make her own cake as a challenge. It ended up being a naked lemon and elderflower cake with a lemon curd filling. It didn’t look like a professional had made it, but it definitely fitted in with our natural theme.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Suzi Reed Photography. We had an engagement shoot with Suzi before the wedding, which was lovely as we got to know each other a bit. After seeing the stunning photos we also knew that we could trust her with our big day! We were overjoyed to see that she had done an even more fantastic job of the wedding!
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Theme was yellow and grey. However, in the forest there was a woodland path leading to the ceremony location. We hung dozens of multicoloured paper pom poms along the way, which added to the magical journey that each of our guests took to join us.
We wanted to keep things simple. For our favours we prepared an origami activity where our guests were invited to fold paper cranes (the children had simple hearts to make!). We’ve still got some of them to this day and hope to keep them forever.
We are both vegan and had a vegan meal, which many of our guests who aren’t vegan said was delicious!
THE HONEYMOON | We went for a spa weekend immediately after the wedding and hope to go somewhere more exotic as a delayed honeymoon in the near future!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | The speeches were very memorable. Emotions were running high in the speech by the Father of the Bride. The Best Man’s speech was heartfelt and funny. Richard was very proud of his speech that he had worked very hard on and had learnt off by heart.
We also had a friend who is a fire-spinner do a fantastic fire performance near the fire pit for all of our guests. It was breathtaking and people were talking about it for weeks afterwards.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Have a longer engagement and don’t rush it! If you are having an outdoor wedding you have to think of everything (including toilets). It may be more work, but means that you can put more of your own personalities into it. Don’t be afraid to haggle!
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | Suzi Reed
Tipi | Magical Tipis
Wedding Dress | Phase Eight
Catering | The Belgian Monk
Suit | Angels Costumes
Fire Performer | Guy Smith
Thank you so much Richard and Tamsin for sharing your beautiful forest adventure with us! Val Xx
Want In On My Happy Wedding Letter?
Join over a thousand engaged couples (and counting) who have snagged my fun no-nonsense regular wedding advice and inspo straight to their inbox. Plus you'll get planning checklists & spreadsheets for absolutely nada.