I’m so very excited to share today’s real wedding with you. I LOVE a back garden wedding where a couple have the opportunity to choose every little detail and make their day entirely their way. WWW readers Jessie and Ed tied the knot in Jessie’s parents’ garden in Cambridgeshire on 29th July 2017 following the legal ceremony a couple of days before. They sourced or made everything themselves and I think you’ll agree that the result is just wonderful. The emphasis was on having a really fun and relaxed day surrounded by loved ones.
They kept the outdoor ceremony brief and moved straight onto a delicious feast prepared by Ed. Isn’t the selection of vintage looking wooden furniture just perfect? Beautiful florals adorned the space indoor and out and the stretch tent was beautifully decorated with paper lanterns and pom poms.
Jessie made some alterations to her beautifully elegant Ghost gown and Ed went for a three piece herringbone suit from ASOS. Let’s also just take a minute to admire the bridesmaids, I can’t get enough of mismatched outfits and this combination works so brilliantly with the bouquets tying the look together.
THE PROPOSAL | The proposal happened in the botanical gardens in Cambridge, where we had our first date. There was no getting down on one knee or popping the question in front of thousands of people, but it was very romantic and very ‘us’! We went for lots of drinks after and celebrated with our families and friends.
THE VISION | We didn’t want anything too formal, and really just wanted a massive party with all the people we love! We are both big fans of ska music, so we wanted a band who could incorporate that. We are also big foodies, so that was important to us too! We tried not to compromise on anything we had our hearts set on, whilst still sticking to budget.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | We started planning as soon as we got engaged with getting the ‘big’ parts of the day booked and out of the way. We then found there was a bit of a lull until March/April time where we started to spend the majority of our weekends just planning the wedding! The majority of the work we did ourselves, however the week leading up to it we roped in many helpers to do lots of the last minute jobs. As it was in Jessie’s parents garden there were many, many jobs to be sorted!
THE VENUE | Legal wedding – Shire Hall in Cambridge, which is a registry office with just both sets of our parents. We then went to Hotel du Vin for drinks followed by dinner in Cotto, which is in the Gonville hotel.
The big wedding was in Jessie’s parents’ garden, with the ceremony being under a wedding arch outside, and a big marquee for the dinner and dancing. We had lots of different areas set out too; with the bar, the summer house and the drive for the food vans!
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | The dress was from Ghost and was personalised and altered by a local lady who makes wedding dresses. The flower crown was made by Rosie Bailey, who runs Wild Florals in Cambridge.
FINDING THE DRESS | I firstly went to a ‘proper’ wedding dress shop in Cambridge to try on lots of different styles, however neither the dresses nor the experience were very ‘me’. I’m not really a dress person so this was a hard task. After trying on some traditional dresses, I had an idea of the kind of thing I really didn’t want, which was surprisingly helpful in my search for the dress. I did a substantial amount of searching on the internet, and finally came across a blog on Pinterest where a lady wore a dress from Ghost (a brand who I thought only really did bridesmaids dresses [which I think is still mostly true]). I thought the dress was so beautifully simple, elegant, and different to all the others I’d seen. I also thought it would be great with the more vintage look which I imagined I would go for. This led me to the Ghost site where I found a few dresses that I liked, but one in particular; the ‘Salma’ dress.
I wanted a low back (which this one had) but I wanted to make it personal to me, so we had some adjustments done to it, along with adding some lace trim.
For our legal wedding which was a couple of days before, I wore a Oliver Bonas yellow dress.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Legal Wedding: Topman, navy three piece suit. Big Wedding: ASOS, Herringbone tweed suit which was also a three piece.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | We didn’t have any readings as we didn’t want the ceremony to be super long – we just wanted to say the important words in front of the people we loved! For the music we had a Ska band called Big 10 who are Cambridge based. We also made masses of playlists for the day and early evening, and followed by a really great DJ for the evening, Kirstan Horn, who is a friend of ours. After the ceremony we also had one of Jessie’s best friends singing for us, accompanied by her sister on the piano.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | Hannah – navy, floor length strapless dress (ASOS)
Gemma – bespoke two piece linen trousers and top in navy.
Natalie – autumnal coloured, floral, strapless, floor length dress (ASOS)
Bex – light pink grecian floor length dress (Coast) with multiway straps
Millie – navy & coral pink floral mid-length dress (Forever 21)
Helen – Burgundy mid-length sleeveless dress (ASOS).
THE FLOWERS | We wanted lots of flowers which reflected and complimented our beautiful surrounding, which they totally did! I also wanted quite a striking flower crown to go with my simple dress. We chose Rosanna Bailey, who runs Wild Florals in Cambridge. We couldn’t have been happier with our choice!
THE CAKE | We didn’t really fancy one wedding cake, so we asked some of our trusted wedding guests to bring desserts! We did provide a tower of delicious cheese, which came from The Larder at Burwash, however our guests brought an impressive selection of homemade delights!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | We chose Laura Babb, of Babb photos who we spotted after doing a wedding of a couple who we know. We really did fall in love with her style of photos and couldn’t imagine choosing anyone else to do ours. They are colourful, fun, organic and just lovely. She was able to capture moments which we will whole heartedly treasure forever.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | These were made by various bridesmaids, friends, our master of ceremonies and us, mostly bought from the internet and shops like tiger. We bought lots of pom poms and lanterns from online, but Ange (our MOC) made meters and meters of beautiful bunting, using our invite graphics, and one of our bridesmaids made lots of stars from patterned card!
The day food was prepared by Ed (he used to be a chef), and by a chef friend a couple of days before the wedding. We had Italian sharing platters to start and then pulled meats and salads for the main – they really did themselves proud here and saved us a lot of money too!
We had two food vans for the evening guests: firstly Buffalo Joe’s (the best chicken wings you will ever try), and secondly Steak and Honour (the best burger you will ever have).
THE HONEYMOON | We flew to Barbados for 3 weeks! We mostly stayed in an Airbnb and then splashed out for three nights in a 4 star resort.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | from Ed: Jessie walking down the aisle, the father of the bride speech and everyone dancing to the band. From Jessie: My dad’s speech, a teary Ed, all of our friends and family being at the same place, the band and OH so much rain!
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Planning is really important so give yourself as much time as you need. Keeping calm, both on the day and leading up to it. Taking time together during the day to savour the moment – we didn’t think we wanted too many portraits and posed photos, although Laura (our photographer) advised us to do so, if not just to spend a bit of time together. We are now so glad we did this as it was the only time we were able to speak to each other! We felt that the most important thing was to make sure we did things our way, and not really to please others! It’s your day to be selfish, so make sure you do it the way you want it.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Flowers | Wild Florals
Band | Big 10
Marquee | Statement Marquees
Wow! Jessie, Ed, thank you so much for sharing your brilliant day with us. Such an imaginative wedding full of personal touches. Rachel x