WWW readers Helen and Sam married on the 14 June 2014 at The Hop Farm in Kent. They wanted their wedding to be full of their personalities and to have a fun atmosphere.
With a pretty mint and blush colour scheme; the bridesmaids looked gorgeous in mint maxis and there were delightful peachy blooms. Helen and Sam homemade much of their wedding themselves, including the kraft paper stationery, naked sponge cake and ladder seating plan.
Helen looked super pretty in lace with a cathedral length veil while the boys donned grey suits and mint ties. There is so much to love here.
Thanks goes to the wonderful Rebecca Douglas for providing the imagery today.
THE PROPOSAL | It happened on Christmas morning in our new flat about 5 and a half years since we met. We’d opened all the presents when he surprised me with one more. It was lovely jewellery box, with another little box inside. He then got down on one knee and with a few tears, asked me to marry him. Of course it was a yes, but I sat there asking him to say it again and again! It made Christmas so special.
THE VISION | From the start, we agreed that the two main aims of the day were to get married with our closest friends and family present, and to have fun! I really wanted put as much of our personalities into the day as possible and create a fun atmosphere.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | I really enjoyed every step of wedding planning. Pinterest became my obsession and I read a lot of blogs for new ideas. I kept endless spreadsheets to keep track of budgets, music and guests. As I plan large events at work, it was easy to keep well organised and be able to enjoy picking out things we loved. My mum was a huge part of the process for me and came with me for every fitting, every wedding fair, every meeting, and I asked her opinion on everything. She was so involved and I wouldn’t have wanted to do it without her.
BUDGET | We saved up for 2 years so we had the budget we wanted. My parents were very generous and bought my dress and contributed to other parts of the day and Sam’s dad bought the suits for the groomsmen. By doing the majority of the decorating and stationery ourselves, we saved a lot of money that we were able to put to use elsewhere.
THE VENUE | We chose the Hop Farm in Paddock Wood for both the ceremony and the wedding breakfast. It was important to us to have the whole day in one venue, as a lot of our guests were from outside the area. The Hop Farm has beautiful grounds, is licensed for weddings in their gazebo outside, and is entertaining for the children.
Mandy, our wedding coordinator was absolutely fantastic throughout the whole process and Debbie, the chef, did a fantastic job with the meal (the main was roasted duck) and a custom Italian buffet. We still get comments from our guests to say that the meal was one of the best they have had at a wedding!
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | I always knew what style of dress I wanted, and it didn’t change too much from the original vision I had. I pictured a lace bodice with a long flowing skirt, nothing too full and heavy, with pretty lace shoulders. Having such a clear picture of what I wanted it to look like made finding it in a shop very difficult. I finally found a dress online that I loved by a Spanish designer, Raimon Bundo, and tracked it down to a boutique in London. After trying on so many, it the first dress that I felt like a proper bride in and I felt so pretty! It was a very scary decision to put the deposit down, but it is true that you just know when you find the one.
On the day I got so many compliments about my dress and there is not one thing about it that I would have changed about it. I wish I could wear it again and again!
I kept my accessories simple, with pretty Swarovski crystal earrings from my mum and a simple diamond bracelet that matched my bridesmaids. My shoes were simple sparkly ballet flats from Zara.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | The men found their suits in Moss Bros very easily. They wore a Ventuno 21 suit in a light grey colour. As they were not traditional wedding suits, they looked quite stylish and had a bit of an edge to them. The ties were difficult to find in a similar colour to the bridesmaid dresses, but I eventually found them in the Tie Store. Their button holes were gyp wrapped with twine which looked simple and matched the bouquets.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | As we had a civil service outside, we had to be quite careful about the readings that we used. Our good friend Bejoy, read ‘Love is’, which he adapted from the verse from the Corinthians and Sam’s sister read ‘I’ll still be loving you’ by C. David Hay.
I walked down the aisle to ‘Air on the G String’ and we walked back as a married couple to ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’ by Isreal Kamalawiwo’ole. While we signed the register we had ‘You Make my Dreams Come True’ by Hall & Oats and ‘You Are the Best Thing’ by Ray LaMontagne. We were announced into our wedding breakfast to Bruno Mars ‘Marry You’ and our first dance was to Frankie Valli’s ‘Can’t Take my Eyes Off You’.
For the evening reception, we had my friend’s incredible band, Ricky and the Hats, who were fantastic and got everyone dancing. They even dedicated a special cover of ‘Let it Go’ to all the boys (stag do memories!).
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had 4 beautiful bridesmaids. I had my cousin and two of my closest friends, together with my maid of honour, who is my best friend from school. I found pretty mint maxi dresses from an online shop called Jarlo London which only needed a couple of alterations to the length before they were spot on. The girls each chose their own nude shoes to wear so they were comfortable during the day.
THE FLOWERS | I wanted quite a wild selection of flowers with lots of corals and whites. We chose a selection of roses, gerbera, september, carnations, eucalyptus, ranunculus and lots of gypsophila. The bouquets were done by a florist and my mum filled hundreds of decorated jam jars for the tables.
THE CAKE | We chose to make our own cake, and recreate a 3 tiered ‘naked’ Victoria sponge cake. After a couple of trials we were quite confident, although the day we actually made it happened to be very hot so the butter cream kept melting! The day before the wedding I wasn’t sure it was going to hold, but luckily we persevered and the cake turned out to be amazing.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | I met our wedding photographer, Rebecca Douglas, at the first wedding fair I visited. I liked her style of photography as it was not too formal, and she captured the happy little moments. Rebecca was wonderful from the planning process through to helping out on the morning of the wedding. She made us feel so at ease on the day and our images are absolutely stunning.
Rebecca also set up a photo booth for the guests to enjoy during the evening. They had so much fun picking out their props and posing and it provided us a lot of laughs looking through the photos!
TRANSPORT | I travelled to the venue with my family in a white 1929 Austin Windsor. The car was stunning, and once we said I do, we had a little drive to take in the moment with a Pimms!
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We spent months working on the details. I made my own wedding stationery as wanted personal that fitted with the day, and something a little different. For the save the dates I designed bunting and the invites were in 3 parts with a little RSVP postcard bound with twine. The menus and name tags all matched the initial design. Each name tag included a personalised quote and a donation to WaterAid.
Our table plan was adapted from an idea that I had found on Pinterest with a vintage step ladder. I found a ladder on ebay, painted it and filled it with frames and flowers to create a lovely centre piece to the room.
My mum made miles of pretty white lace bunting which we hung from the beams, and I hung paper pom poms, put photos of us from our childhood dotted around, and decorated jam jars with lace and twine.
We were lucky that we were able to set up the day before so everything was ready and there wasn’t much to do on the morning before everyone arrived.
THE HONEYMOON | We booked a week away in Santorini for a ‘minimoon’ straight after the wedding. It was lovely to relax in the sun after such a whirlwind. We are taking a longer holiday/honeymoon in the new year when we will be visiting South Africa and Mozambique – two of my favourite places!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Walking down the aisle and seeing Sam’s face when he turned around.
The speeches were so special and had us laughing and crying. I am so pleased they were filmed so we can watch them again.
Our first dance was incredible. It was so special when all our guests surrounded us half way through and joined in with dancing and singing!
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Don’t panic or stress. Have a list of what you need to get done, and work through it allowing enough time for each. Take a step back on the day and watch everyone else enjoy themselves! Keep a close track of your budget and note down everything you spend. The little things really do add up!
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photography | Rebecca Douglas
Transport | AJM Vintage cars
Guestbook | Ché at Indie Love Books
Band | Ricky and the Hats
Dress | Raimon Bundo at Angelica Bridal
Venue | The Hop Farm
Favours | WaterAid donations
Bridesmaids | Jarlo
Ties | The Tie Store
Oh soooo pretty.
Thanks so so much to Helen and Sam for sharing their gorgeous wedding day with us XOXO Lou