I defy you not to fall head over heels for this picture perfect pretty blush affair today. Bride Vicks’ impeccable style and creativity really brought her beautiful vision to life.
WWW readers Tom and Vicks tied the knot on the 30th April 2016 in a church ceremony followed by a back garden marquee wedding in Norfolk. The picturesque setting overlooking the Broads really was spectacular and the pole tent marquee nestled in just so. The space was decked in hand made stylish paper goods, copper tin can blooms and light up letters, which were also DIY projects. Impressed yet? I sure am, it all looked so very gorgeous.
Vicks’ gown really was a show-stopper and she looked utterly radiant. Eliza Jane Howell’s ‘Jayne’ is a beaded beauty with the sweetest sleeves and Vicks accessorised it perfectly with her gold hair accessory and long veil. Tom meanwhile looked very handsome in blue teamed with a peach tie and rustic buttonhole. Getting your pinning fingers ready lovelies.
Thanks so much to James Powell Photography for sharing these super dreamy images with us.
THE PROPOSAL | We were on top of a mountain in France when Tom popped the question back in December of 2014. We were out there spending Christmas with Tom’s Mum who lives at the foot of the Pyrenees and with both of us being keen skiers we were hoping to spend the last day of our holiday hitting the slopes. Due to poor weather conditions all lifts up the mountain were closed. We were gutted but wanting to make the most of our last day Tom suggested going for a hike instead. We walked into the mountains for about 2 hours and eventually made it to the top where there was not a person or building in sight, just the beautiful mountains. I suggested this would be a good point to stop for a snack so asked Tom to get the food out of his bag whilst I took pictures of the view. I finished taking my photos and as I turned around, instead of finding a pile of mince pies I found Tom down on one knee with a ring box in his hand. I couldn’t quite believe what was happening and immediately started crying (with happiness of course!) The proposal came completely out of the blue, so I was shocked but ecstatic. The whole proposal couldn’t have been more perfect and was very romantic.
THE VISION | An informal, laid back, countryside wedding surrounded by the best family, friends, music, booze and food. The overall vision was a festival vibe mixed with a touch of vintage styling.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | We’re a pretty laid back couple so very little “formal” planning went on in the lead up to our wedding day. It was clear from the start that we both wanted the same out of the day so we assigned each other jobs and went from there. Tom was in charge of the booze, entertainment and honeymoon and I took on pretty much everything else with the help of my mum. The first thing I booked was the photographer. I knew that the style of photography I wanted would be hard to find and imagined any I did like would be in high demand and get booked up quickly. When I stumbled across James Powell Photography I was so excited, his style was exactly what I was looking for so booked him almost straight away – that was way over a year before our wedding day. Tom did the same with the entertainment. Tom is really into his music so knew from the start that he wanted a live band. Again the good ones book up quickly so he made booking that a priority. We had a band called The Hot Shots, they are based in Essex but were happy to travel further afield and they were fantastic! We were extremely lucky that we didn’t have to find a venue as my parents agreed for us to have a marquee on their back lawn, and with overlooking the Norfolk Broads it was a perfect setting for a wedding reception. Once the photographer, band and venue were sorted everything else just sort of fell into place. We had lots of help from our families, with my mum helping to organize the marquee hire, catering and flowers. Tom’s mum organized bringing all the wine over from France and Tom’s dad sorted the PA system. Because we had plenty of time and lots of people to help us planning never became a chore or too stressful, in fact I loved every second of it!
THE VENUE | It was always our intention to get married in a church so had our marriage ceremony at the St Andrew’s church in Framingham Pigot, a village just a few miles from our reception venue. We didn’t have much of a choice when picking the church, as it was the only one locally that was big enough to seat our number of guests but luckily for us it is a particularly pretty church in a beautiful rural setting. We were in very good hands with the church wardens Patricia and Frankie, who were both incredibly organized and so helpful in ensuring everything was ready for our big day. Our vicar, the Reverend Chris Ellis led a wonderful service and was so welcoming of Tom and I into his parish, many of our guests commented on how lovely the ceremony was.
For our wedding reception we had a marquee on the lawn of my parents house, which overlooks the Norfolk Broads. Wanting a laid back, countryside wedding with festival vibe, we opted for a traditional 3-pole canvas marquee, which we hired from The Highfield Event Group based just outside Cambridge. As well as the marquee we made use of an old Dutch barn where we served reception drinks and wood fired pizzas in the evening. My parents only brought the property a few months before we got engaged and previous to that it had been neglected for 15 years, so as you can imagine it needed a lot of work to make it wedding-ready. The lawn where we had the marquee was pretty much rubble until a few months before the wedding which they flatten and re-turfed just in time.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | I wore Eliza Jane Howell’s Jayne dress, a vintage inspired dress covered in intricate beading. Because there was so much detail in the beading on the dress I decided keep my accessories really simple and pair it with a plain ivory cathedral length veil and a brass and silk flower hair vine by Mignonne Handmade. In keeping with the almost antique gold tone of some of the beading on the dress, I chose a pair of gold strappy Kurt Geiger heels and gold drop earrings.
FINDING THE DRESS | I had always imagined wearing a bohemian-inspired wedding dress, something that incorporated lace with a floaty, feather-light tulle skirt. I pretty much started looking as soon as we got engaged (being an apparel designer, the dress was a huge part of the wedding for me and I couldn’t contain my excitement!) and found a number of designers that captured the boho-bride look. I made one appointment in Norwich (near to the wedding venue and where my parents live) and two in London. Although I found a number of dresses that I really liked I couldn’t help but feel like they were all missing that little extra “something special” that you would expect from your dream wedding dress. I explained this to the lovely lady who assisted me in Blackburn Bridal in London (I feel awful that I can’t remember her name because she was amazing and so helpful) and she suggested trying some beaded tulle options. The tulle still in-keeping with bohemian-bride look, but the beading adding a touch of vintage glamour to make me feel that bit more special. I tried on two beaded options, Jenny Packham’s Eden gown and Eliza Jane Howell’s Jayne gown. I loved them both but was particularly blown away by the train on the Eliza Jayne Howell dress – it was definitely that little bit of something special that was missing from the previous gowns I had tried on! As soon as I put it on I knew the Jayne dress was the one for me. The weight of the beading made the dress drape beautifully and as I had always imagined wearing a dress with sleeves the little frill sleeves were perfect. I live in Dorset and although I cannot recommend Blackburn Bridal enough, I decided against ordering my dress from there because of the distance I would have to travel for fittings etc… After a bit of searching I managed to find another stockist of Eliza Jayne Howell gowns, Chameleon Bridal in Bournemouth, which happens to be only a few miles from where I live. I had an equally fantastic experience with Chameleon Bridal from start to finish. I had 5 appointments/fittings in total and all the members of staff were brilliant. They were all personable but professional, making me feel so special on every visit. Nothing was every too much trouble, they even agreed for me pop into the shop last minute one very busy Saturday to try on my dress on for my Maid of Honour. It was the first time I had tried my dress on since ordering it a few months earlier and I was so nervous at the thought that I may not still love it as much. The staff immediately made me feel at and ease and luckily I was still as much in love with my dress as when I had first tried it on!
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Tom wore a blue slim fitting 3-piece suit from Reiss with white shirt and tan leather shoes. Being a casual and laid back man, a traditional suit with tails was never an option for Tom, but still wanting to look smart he decided a modern-cut lounge suit was the one for him! The groomsmen wore suits in a similar colour and fit from Next.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | Getting married in a church meant we needed to have at least one biblical reading so we chose a extract from Song of Soloman 2: 10-13; 8: 6-7. Choosing the second non-biblical reading was much more of a challenge. We searched for hours for the right piece. We wanted a reading we could both connect with, something that was meaningful and but not too cheesy (it appears these are hard to find!). In the end we decided on ‘The Future’ a poem by Emma Salomon; it’s a really beautiful piece and exactly want we were looking for. We asked my stepsister, Sammy and Tom’s stepsister, Hannah to do the readings and both did a fantastic job. I walked into the church to Johann Pachelbel’s ‘Canon in D’ played on the organ. My Maid of Honour, Amy had it at her wedding last year and I fell in love with it then and luckily she didn’t mind me using the same piece. During the signing of the register we had “Future Days’ by Pearl Jam, a song that is close to both of our hearts. We wanted to leave the church to an up beat song, so with Tom being a fan of rhythm a & blues we left to Garnet Mimms’ ‘As Long As I Have You’.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 5 beautiful bridesmaids in total. Amy, my cousin and best friend was my Maid of Honour, then I had my two sisters, Char and Pip, Tom’s sister Rachel and a very close and life-long friend Cara. I couldn’t have wished for better group of bridesmaids. Not only did they organize me an amazing hen weekend in Bath, they all took time off work before the wedding to help me set up and I absolutely couldn’t have done it without them. They also did a fabulous job of keeping me calm and providing me with a constant stream of Prosecco on the morning of the wedding. For the bridesmaids we chose a dove grey dress from Coast. I wanted their dress to compliment mine so the embellished top and V-shape back did the perfect job.
THE FLOWERS | Bramble and Berry, a florist specializing in rustic, homegrown flowers and local to our wedding venue did the bouquets and buttonholes for us. Sarah, the owner did an amazing job of the flowers for my Mum and Step Dad’s wedding a few years ago, so as far as I was concerned there was no need to look elsewhere. From early on I had a vision of how I would like my bouquet to be. I imagined a rustic bouquet of soft peaches, blush and ivories alongside sage green and grey-tinted leaves, tied informally with a raw silk ribbon. I booked an appointment to see Sarah and knew straight away that were on the same wavelength and was confident she would create me the bouquet of my dreams, and boy did she! There were a few flowers like blush peonies and peach stocks that we weren’t sure would be in season but Sarah worked her magic and managed to order some from Holland, and with a bit of luck and careful nurturing they were out and ready in time to use in my bouquet. I was absolutely over the moon with my bouquet; it was perfect and over and above what I had expected. The bridesmaids had a slightly smaller version of my bouquet and the buttonholes for Tom and his Groomsmen were a selection of small spray roses, succulents and rosemary.
To keep costs down we decided to rope in friends and family to help with the flowers in the church and marquee. My mum, Grandma and aunties are all keen flower arrangers and did a superb job creating soft tumbling arrangements in-keeping with my rustic, country/festival inspired theme. My mum was in charge of ordering the flowers and used a number of different places. She placed an order from Holland, an order from a local florist and scoured the local market and supermarkets for anything in the right colours that were on offer! We collected the foliage from our gardens and it turns out you need a lot more than you would think – my grandma even resorted to cutting down a whole eucalyptus tree for me! The flowers in the marquee were a true DIY affair; we used recycled tin cans and glass bottles for the tables and created two giant floral wreaths to hang from the roof out of a plastic hoola hoop and flower arranging oasis.
THE CAKE | Neither Tom nor I are a fan of traditional fruit cake so we were set on having a ‘naked’ Victoria sponge wedding cake from the start. As it turns out my little sister Pip is a fantastic baker and was prepared to take on the challenge of making our wedding cake for us. It was her first ever wedding cake and she did the most incredible job. Not only did it look amazing lightly sugar dusted and decorated with fresh flowers but it also tasted amazing. We were over the moon with her creation and everyone who came to the wedding said how impressed they were. I say she should give up the day job and become a professional wedding cake maker!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | We chose James Powell, a Norfolk based wedding photographer to capture our big day. We had always had a vision of the style we wanted for our wedding photography and couldn’t believe our luck when we came across James’ website. The few other photographers that we had considered lived miles away and as luck would have it James was local to our wedding venue. We only had to take a quick glance at his website to realize he was the man to take the wedding photos of our dreams and he did that and more! When we first viewed our photos we were lost for words, the photos James took for us (all 700+ of them!) are absolutely incredible and over and above what we could ever have imagined. James has captured our big day perfectly and not missed a single detail. His artistic eye is genius and he has created stunningly unique shots that capture all the special moments and memories we will treasure for years to come. (I can assure you that traipsing though a field in a wedding dress and high heels was well worth it!). Not only is his photography first-class, James is a top guy and a pleasure to be around. He is fun, friendly and professional and made both of us feel so at ease in front of the camera on our big day (and that’s saying something for a couple who really dislike having their photo taken!). Many of our guests also commented on what a great guy James is and how well his fitted in with the day. I would recommend James to anyone, we genuinely couldn’t have wished for a better photographer to capture our wedding day.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | From the beginning of the planning process this was the part I was most excited about! Being the “creative type” I wanted to design and make as much for our wedding day as I possibly could. With the help of Pinterest and lots of inspirational wedding blogs I quickly created a vision of how I wanted the details and décor to look. It is so easy to get carried away with spending for your wedding day so I figured doing a lot of it myself was the best option for us and it also helped to keep the cost down. I designed all the wedding stationery myself, from the save the dates, to the formal invitations, the order of services and the table stationery. I used an online printers to print my designs and had a personalized stamp made that I used throughout the stationery. We recycled tin cans (I ate a lot of tinned tomatoes in the run up to the wedding!) which I spray painted in a copper colour for a more vintage look. We used these along with recycled glass jars and bottles for the flowers for the marquee.
In keeping with the festival vibe we wanted festoon lighting and lit-up letter signs throughout the venue. We hired the festoon lighting from Ideal Events, a events hire company based in Norwich. I made some of the lit-up letter signs myself and others I found on eBay. We hired the glasses, crockery, cutlery and tablecloths from CMA hire in Diss. Emily, the owner of the company was amazing in helping me bring the vision I had for the tables to life. We spent a morning in her warehouse laying and relaying tables until I was completely satisfied with the look. She had such an amazing range to choose from and in the end we went for dark grey hessian tablecloths with vintage look glasses, plates and cutlery. I made the pale grey table runners my self. Purple Plum Catering of Norwich did our wedding breakfast and served the sharing starter in vintage wooden hampers, which was a lovely touch and in keeping with our theme.
THE HONEYMOON | We went to Italy for the main part of our honeymoon. We spent 2 days sight seeing in Rome and 7 nights taking it easy on the Amalfi Coast (which was well needed after the hectic run up to the wedding!). We also added a mini break to Cornwall onto the end of our trip. Cornwall is one of our favourite places to holiday and seeing as it was our honeymoon we treated ourselves to a luxury 2 night stay at Rick Steins hotel in Padstow. Considering we were in England we were really lucky with the weather making it a perfect end to an amazing two weeks.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | First making eye contact with each other in the church.
Forgetting EVERYTHING from our church rehearsal. Luckily our vicar was very good at discreetly talking us through what we needed to do!
Traipsing through a field in our wedding attire to get the perfect picture before the light changed (but it was well worth it!)
Seeing a rainbow.
Having all our friends and family in one place at the same time. We had the party of our lives!
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Make sure you have the wedding that you both want and try not to worry about pleasing everyone else – it is impossible to keep everyone happy! Try not to let stress get the better of you and enjoy every moment of your big day as well as the lead up to it. Don’t be disappointed if not every detail goes to plan – it’s probably only you who will notice, no one else will. Inevitably the day will fly by, in the madness of the day it is hard to find time for just the two of you, when you are not surrounded by guests or having your photo taken. Try to take a moment for just the two of you to take everything in, even if it’s just for a few minutes. Treasure every moment and make some of the best memories of your life. Laugh, cry, drink, eat and dance until your feet can take no more. Remember it is YOUR day and along as the both of you are happy, nothing else matters.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | James Powell Photography
Dress designer | Eliza Jane Howell
Wedding Dress boutique | Chameleon Bridal, Bournemouth
Hair accessory | Mignonne Handmade
Hair | Tracey Ward
Make up | Melissa Abel
Flowers (bouquets and buttonholes) | Bramble & Berry
Band | The Hot Shots
Marquee | The Highfield Event Group
Festoon Lights | Ideal Event Services
Crockery | CMA
Oh so fabulous.
Tom and Vicks, thank you both so very much for sharing your wedding story with us, what an honour xo Lou