A Crafty Tipi Seaside Wedding

crafty seaside wedding

James and Lucy were married in September in a Church service followed by a tipi reception at Harry Warren House. They wanted their wedding to be personal with crafty homemade decorations and love.

They created some beautiful decorations, jam jars and milk bottles filled with flowers, handmade star confetti, origami boats, each guest made a bunting triangle and yummy homemade cakes. It looks incredible, i so love their name initials hug from the ceiling too, a lovely touch. All set on the gorgeous Dorset coast.

Lucy looks so beautiful with her relaxed bridal look, natural hair, flip flops and a lace dress. While James went for a vintage tweed suit which looks very suave indeed.

Thanks so much to Big Bouquet for sharing their amazing images with us today.


tipi wedding decor

Names….James and Lucy

Wedding Date…. 15/9/12

The Proposal…James proposed while we hopped around the Greek islands. I had absolutely NO idea! We were on day 7 of our 10 day holiday on a beautiful little island called Koufonissia within the little Cyclades, the sun was setting, we were sat by a little church and James said ‘shall we get married in a church like that’ I had no idea what was happening so told him that the church was a bit small (in Greece they can only fit about 10 people in as they are owned by families and just sit at the end of there land!), he asked if I wanted to get married? Still on the wrong wave length I told him it was a bit late in the day and that I hadn’t showered……. Then he bucked his ideas up, got down on one knee, pulled out a very shiny ring and asked the ever important question, of course I said yes!

The Vision for the day…. We wanted a day that said something about us, the things we loved and made us happy and wanted to share that with our friends and family. A day… or two surrounded by our family and friends, declaring our love, the sun shining, lawn games, crafty home made decorations (they are the ones with all the love in apparently), swimming, camping, enjoying the view, guest inspired bunting, prossecco, real ale, fish and chips and more cake than you could ever imagine!!

The Planning process…. James is so easy going he was happy for me to do the majority of the planning. His only concerns were being able to wakeboard to the beautiful Harry Warren House in the morning, and that there would be enough real ale to see us through the day! I ran a few bits past him and left a few as a surprise for the day. I wasn’t stressed out by the planning at all, managed to do a great bit of haggling with supplier and wholesalers to get the price down, got very excited looking at bits of inspiration and what other people said they would like to make. A few tears the day before while decorating the tipi in a hurry with the groom sorting out the last few bits at home, a little hug from the best man made everything better!

The Venue… The beautiful Harry Warren House in Studland Dorset, the wonderful couple who live there rent out the lawn for a few months over the summer. The land steps straight down onto the beach so all our guests could have an afternoon dip or just enjoy the amazing view. We had 3 giant tipis erected with open sides to enjoy the amazing Jurassic coast. The thought of having a hotel wedding or a white marquee was not what James and I had in mind at all, we were absolutely thrilled when we found our venue and our tipis!!

The Dress + Accessories…..Im afraid I wasn’t looking for a designer dress I just wanted one that made me feel like a princess so even now I couldn’t tell you who made it but it was long and floaty and covered in lace. I found an old pearl necklace at a vintage market for £10 and wore a white pair of havaiana flip flops.

Finding the dress…. Didn’t take as long as I thought actually but apparently the pressure was on as I didn’t realise it would take 9 months to make a dress…… you can make a baby in that amount of time so surely 9 months was plenty!! My fantastic sister was with me every step of the way and her honesty was a godsend. Once we had found the one, we both knew!

Groom’s attire…1st choice- speedos and a Hawaiian shirt (hence why we have a life size cardboard cut our of James in speedos and a Hawaiian shirt holding the seating plan), 2nd and preferred choice- 3 piece vintage tweed found in a vintage clothes shop a few miles from where we live. After a quick trip to the dry cleaners it was as good as new

The Readings + Music….Songs of Solomon read by my wonderful friend Louise and a piece about love written and read by James older brother Jon. Jerusalem , one more step along the world I go, guide me, o thou great redeemer. Ist dance, Jackie Wilson- (your love keeps lifting me) Higher and Higher.

Beautiful bridesmaids…..My sister Kate and James sister Julie, along with our niece and nephew poppy who is 2, tom who is 1. Kate and Julie were amazing, really relaxed bridesmaids who kept the little ones entertained and the boys in check. Kate threw me the most amazing Hen do, yurt camping with 12 hens, cocktails, cakes, segways, kayaks and crafting…. She knows me so well it was amazing!

The Flowers…My friend Kim and I chose White Hydrangeas, pink spray roses, white rose button holes and whatever else we could find in our gardens and at the flower wholesalers that had a vintage look. I chose to have little wrist flowers as well which I absolutely loved as I still wanted to have a little something flowery once my bouquet was thrown and my hands were full of bubbles and cake.

The Cake…A 3 tier sponge and fruit cake made by James wonderful mum Virginia, I left it up to her mainly but wanted icing spots all over, she topped it of with a beautiful sage ribbon.

Your Photographer…. Emma and Ian from Big Bouquet, A wonderful husband and wife couple who were funky vintagy cool and knew exactly what we wanted photo wise from our wedding, managing to capture the fun and the magic perfectly. Apparently they were everywhere but I can say honestly that I don’t remember seeing them, they must have been hiding in bushes and under tables!

The Details + Decor….This was my favourite bit….. Everyone I know saved jam jars for me, I washed them with love, tied a big ribbon around them and either put candles or flowers in them. I also ‘borrowed’ 32 milk bottles from dairy crest and put ribbons and flowers in them too, all 32 were washed and returned safely along with a little note and a couple of beers to our very sweet milkman. On our hen do we made some dangly ribbon things, handmade confetti stars punched out of Captin Corellis Mandolin book. With our homemade invites we sent out plain bunting triangles for our guests to decorate and send back in, then my wonderful mum Caroline sewed all of these together as well as 80 metres or ordinary bunting triangles to hang up for all to see at the wedding, the home made triangles were amazing and capture James and I perfectly, lots of owls as James is known as the wise old owl, he can fall asleep anywhere anytime in about 3 seconds!! We made what felt like a million origami boats to hang from the tipi poles, friends and my mum made home made jam with a ‘spread the love’ sticker on to go on our homemade scones. Friends bought cakes and cookies and brownies biscuits and we had a huge afternoon tea with vintage crockery provided by Vintage Dorset and the lovely Linda and team. I bought lots of newspapers and magazines and threw as many old blankets and pillows into a trunk so that people could have chill out time enjoying a read, glass of wine and the amazing view in the afternoon. We had giant jenga as well as croquet , hoopla, rounders, and a variety of other entertaining garden games.

The Honeymoon….A make is up as you go along trip around Bali, James surfed and I drank strawberry dacquiris, we could have stayed there forever!

Memorable moments…All of it, it was such an amazing day. Waking up in the morning, excited and scared, Seeing James’ nervous smile as I walked down the isle, the speeches containing embarrassing stories of our upbringings, tossing the bouquet, my aunty Sara walking across the lawn in her lime swimming cosy ready to jump into the sea, our first dance when all the men ran onto the dance floor and picked James and I up whilst the band still played ‘higher and higher’, leaving the wedding back to the campsite where id booked a surprise ‘bell tent’ for James with a full double cast iron bed, champagne and chocolates!!!

Advice for other couples…Enjoy every second, it flies by so quickly and before you know it, its time to go home.

Credit where credit is due…

Big Bouquet photography- www.bigbouquet.co.uk

The Harry Warren House- www.harrywarrenhouse.com

Tipi events- www.tipievents.co.uk

Vintage Dorset- www.vintagedorset.co.uk


Oh such a beautifully crafted love filled wedding. Thanks so much to James and Lucy for sharing their wedding with us today XOXO Lou

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