A very warm welcome to Zara and Tim today and their intimate pub wedding held on the 17th August 2019. They were firstly married in a church ceremony and following their vows they celebrated at The Weyside in Surrey. The pub, barn and boathouses were perfect for their relaxed and fun vision.
I have to say their day was so chic and stylish and all for a very budget friendly £9000. I really adore their outfits; Zara wore an elegant Jesus Peiro gown, while Tim donned a Paul Smith suit and bicycle tie, they both looked really gorgeous. Other elements of their day I love are the colourful and bright blooms, the cute matchbox place names and the pink and red cake. Wow.
Huge thanks goes to Heather Sham Photography for sharing with us these super beautiful images.
When we first discussed our wedding, the vision was to escape to the Highlands of Scotland, alone, and say our vows on cliff with lashings on sea salt air blowing us about. Queue dramatic, moody pictures with my veil flying through the air. But after some thought and reality hitting, we decided that this might be more for the incredible instagrammable pictures. If we were to consider what is ‘behind the Instagram’, the most important thing was that our nearest and dearest could celebrate this big moment with us.
The vision then became a relaxed, informal, small close friendship & family circle on a summers day. We were in the process of buying and renovating a house when planning the wedding (!) so we were also conscious that we had limited funds and didn’t want to spend on extras that wouldn’t contribute to the fun of the day.
The Planning Process
The planning was to be honest, very one sided. I stuck to planning the wedding whilst Tim took over on house renovation admin. He was involved in decision making, but as we had quite a clear vision as to what we wanted, the only major decisions we had to make were photographer and venue – both of which he was involved in! We got engaged in February and were married in August, so there wasn’t a lot of time to get organised… originally I had planned for a June wedding but quickly changed my mind when I realised how much there was to book.
£10,000 but we managed to do it for £9,000.
We were married in Christ Church, Ottershaw and had the reception at The Weyside Pub in Guildford. The Church was sentimental to me as I had attended there as a child with my Mum and knew I wanted to be married in a church building. It was incredibly hard to find a venue that didn’t charge for venue hire on top of food costs. As we had 52 people we struggled to find a restaurant or pub to accommodate us all (it was still a major squeeze at The Weyside and we only just fit everybody in). It was the outdoor area with the boat houses on the river which made me fall in love with The Weyside and the staff were incredibly keen and accommodating during the planning process, going over and above to make it happen. We paid per head for the food and wine with a very small fee to exclusively rent out The Barn, which was the main room, and the two boathouses outside.
Your Outfits & Accessories
My dress was Jesus Peiro from Miss Bush Bridal. The limited time for planning the wedding had the most effect on my dress buying experience. Most brides have a minimum of a year to choose from a sample and get their dress made, but I didn’t have that luxury. I went to several different shops and boutiques and had an array of experiences. I knew I didn’t have huge budget to play with, but equally the dress was very important to me – I love clothes and wanted to feel my absolute best on our day! After quite a few trips to different bridal stores with my closest friends, I decided to blitz a few ‘last options’ and took a day off work to do so, on my own. My first shop of the day was Miss Bush Bridal in Ripley – I knew I loved the designers they stocked but hadn’t previously wanted to go because I knew I would fall in love with a dress out of my budget and time frame. Luckily they were having a small sample sale, so I crossed my fingers but didn’t hold my breath. The dress was the third one I tried on and the first one I had ever tried on that almost fitted me perfectly! It turned out the dress had been altered for one of the staff members as a seamstress trial which was why it was in the sale for £500. The lady it had been altered for was my exact height – so I knew it was meant to be. The simple, elegant cut was what I fell in love with and the way the incredible quality material moved when I swished around was exactly what I’d been missing in the cheaper options of dresses I’d tried. I bought the dress and spent just under £200 on dry cleaning and very slight alterations to take the waist in.
Tim’s suit was from Paul Smith and his tie had little bikes on it as an ode to his love for his second wife, his bicycle. This was a very easy process – a trip to The Bentalls Centre and a very helpful salesman – we were in and out in 45 minutes!
My cousin Molly is, luckily for me, a very talented MUA so she did my make-up. We had a trial when I had a hay fever induced swollen eye – so it’s safe to say I wasn’t feeling my most attractive. I asked her to do “natural and glowy” and by the time it got to the wedding day I had changed my mind multiple times, texting her only the night before saying I wanted a red lip! My final decision was ‘more is more’ (talk about a 180!) as I realised that actually, I didn’t want to look like I do every day. My make-up was more than I would normally wear but it did not budge and it came out beautifully in all of the photos.
I had my hair done by the wonderful Katka at Mirra Hair Salon in Weybridge. I had a long bob at the time and decided to have it down with a side parting and a slight curl to keep it above my neckline.
The wonderful Bride & Blooms did my flowers for me. I wanted bright, fun flowers with minimal green foliage. I loved the idea of lots of hydrangeas, ranunculi and peonies and really gave Sarah at Bride & Blooms free range to do what she thought best, with the help of a Pinterest board! I wanted bright, clashing colours like pink and red and Sarah certainly delivered. We had two large arrangements at the church, my bouquet and fishbowls of flowers at the pub on the tables. Sarah also did tea lights and lots of white pillar candles on the tables.
Heather Sham was our photographer and such a dream to work with. We found Heather through my best friend, she had gone on an Instagram search for me when she heard me say that I wasn’t sure about having a photographer due to the expense – this was something she couldn’t abide by! As soon as I saw the beautiful photos on Heather’s grid I knew I wouldn’t be happy with collating everyone’s phone pictures and hoping for the best.
We didn’t want to be gone for hours getting couples photos and missing out on our guests and the party, so as soon as we came out of the church we sped off in a car to the venue whilst the guests came on the bus we had organised for them. We found a field next door to the pub on the off chance and posed whilst people walking their dogs looked on (a little embarrassing!). Heather made us feel as comfortable as we ever could be in that situation and the photos came out beautifully. The rest of the evening Heather captured us and our guests in a more candid setting which was exactly what we wanted.
The Details & Décor
I wanted to have name places that people could keep and actually use. My other very talented cousin, Rosy, made us colourful matchboxes for each of the guests with their names painted on them. They brightened up the tables and went really well with the bright flowers. It’s lovely to visit friends and see them using their matches in their homes still!
My friend Lizzie, of Elizabeth May Bakes made our gorgeous cake for us. This was something that we had to scale back on for budget reasons and I’m glad we did. I originally asked her to make a three tier cake of three different flavours – but as we had dessert and a cheeseboard for the guests, most people were too full to sample the cake! In the end we went for a lemon cake with raspberry jam and clashing pink and red icing to go with our bright clashing colour theme.
We went away to Dorset for a couple of days after our wedding which was a lovely minimoon and then headed to New Zealand for 2 weeks in February of this year which was epic!
- Watching my parents trying to leave three times but coming back to dance to “Candy” with us and all of our friends.
- My Dad and Tim’s speeches, I was completely blown away with them both and funnily enough even though they hadn’t compared notes, they were both pretty similar!
Advice For Other Couples
Scrap the photo booth and the party favours and put the money behind the bar!! If you can’t afford a band or a DJ, Spotify is your friend – just make sure your speakers are good enough and the bar is near your dance floor.
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Heather Sham Photography
Make up Artist
Mirra Hair Salon
Elizabeth May Bakes
How very wonderful, I just love their portraits in the field.
Zara and Tim thank you ever so much for sharing with us your lovely wedding story xo Lou