The Outbuildings in Anglesey, Wales is where we are headed for today’s rural real wedding story. Rachel and Kristian were hitched on the 13th July 2019, a date they researched into being statistically the hottest day of the year on Anglesey, what a great idea! It turns out the weather played ball which enabled them to really make the most of the beautiful countryside views, complete with music, ice cream, beer barrels and games outdoors.
They were married in the main room indoors, against the most beautiful moon gate flower arch, before hosting a party in magical tipis. They then brought the moon gate outside as the perfect backdrop to photos and by the sounds of it, guests just loved using it for their snaps.
There are so many lovely touches, such as the doughnut wall, cheese tower wedding cake and confetti cones to name but a few. Also how gorgeous do Rachel and Kristian look in their chosen attire? So very stylish! Such a fun and personal day.
Jessica O’Shaughnessy Photography, thank you ever so much for sharing these stunning captures.
We were very lucky to get engaged in the Philippines on Christmas Day. We were two months into a six month career break trip around the world when Kris popped the question. We had treated ourselves for Christmas by spending approximately a whole month’s travelling budget on a posh resort on the gorgeous island of Boracay. We spent Christmas Day on the beach drinking cocktails and eating pizza but Kris kept disappearing off to the room. I thought he wasn’t well due to the dodgy food we had been eating the previous week in Cambodia but he was actually setting up the hotel room with champagne and roses! When we finally went back to the room together he got down on one knee. I was completely shocked as I wasn’t expecting it to happen while we were backpacking as I didn’t think he would risk carrying a ring around with him. The sweetest thing was that he had gone to a jewellers in Vietnam and had a cheap copy made of a HUGE DeBeers ring I had sent him a photo of years ago! So he proposed with a giant (fake) rock which I loved and wore for the rest of the trip with a constant low level fear that I was going to get kidnapped if anyone thought it was a real diamond!
When we got back home to London four months later we went to Hatton Garden together to get my ‘real’ ring but I still have a special place in my heart for the huge Vietnamese rock!
We both knew we wanted to get married on Anglesey, a small island off the coast of North Wales where I’m from. Kristian isn’t from Anglesey but he spent summers there when he was little and his parents also got married there so it was a special place for us both.
We both wanted a relaxed, fun wedding with lots of great food! We wanted it to be as personal as possible with lots of homemade and unique elements. We also wanted to make sure it was super easy and fun for the guests.
The Planning Process
The planning began in earnest online while we were still away, I think Kristian got sick of me showing him photos of venues whilst we were supposed to be meeting new people in hostels or planning the next leg of the trip! I even sent my mum and a bridesmaid to an open day at one venue on Anglesey while we were abroad and got them to report back in as much detail as possible! When we landed back in the UK I went straight to Anglesey to visit all of the potential venues and completely fell in love with The Outbuildings. We were allowed to choose a date so we researched the statistically hottest day of the year on Anglesey and picked the 13th July! From then on the planning fell into place. We were lucky enough to get all of the suppliers we wanted first time – possibly because not many other couples fancied a wedding on unlucky 13!
Our whole day was held at The Outbuildings, a beautiful B&B in the middle of rural Anglesey. We had the whole place including the 5 rooms to ourselves for the whole weekend. We set up a tipi in the garden for dinner and dancing, and had the ceremony indoors in the main room in front of an amazing flower arch and old fashioned fireplace.
We loved The Outbuildings as they make sure they only have around 12 weddings a year so that each can be completely personal and focussed on. For the rest of the year they run events such as supper clubs and yoga retreats, so it didn’t feel like a ‘wedding factory’.
The other thing we loved about the venue was its reputation for great food. The chefs were outstanding and a lot of the food is locally sourced. For our menu, we were simply asked to send them a list of foods we enjoyed a few months before the wedding and the chefs came back with a bespoke 3 course menu with 3 options for the guests to choose from for each course. We went back and forth to tweak as much as we liked before finalising our perfect menu. The food on the day was delicious and everyone commented on it.
Your Outfits & Accessories
My dress was a Mira Zwillinger dress from Browns Brides in London. I completely fell in love with the Israeli designed dresses when I was looking as I loved the floaty ethereal look and I wanted it to fit in with the laid back, floral look of the wedding. I also needed to go floaty as knew I couldn’t pull off a fishtail!
Browns created some beautiful chiffon cold shoulder sleeves to add on to the strapless dress so that I was able to wear it in two ways. I intended to take the sleeves off in the evening and have a strapless dress for dancing but the day just slipped past in such a whirlwind that I didn’t get a chance to!
My shoes were Jimmy Choo which I loved but discovered an hour in that they were awfully uncomfortable! I had to change into a trusty pair of block heels from & Other Stories for the rest of the day.
Kristian’s suit was from Suit Supply. He got a fully tailored handmade suit but it was surprisingly good value! He picked the material (blue and chequered) as he didn’t want a completely plain suit.
Kristian’s shoes and belt were from Next and tie from was M&S.
I knew I wanted flowers to be a huge part of the day as I absolutely love gorgeous flower arrangements at weddings. The flowers were done by a local florist called Scent With Love. I chose sweet peas and freesias as my late nana had loved those flowers. We also had peonies and roses and a mixture of greenery in all of the displays. My bouquet was huge and smelt incredible! The florist also made us a beautiful moon gate which we had in the ceremony room and then moved out to outside the tipi to create a backdrop for photos for the rest of the day. It looked so beautiful against the green fields and almost all of the guests had photos in front of it!
I booked Rebecca Foreshaw for my hair and makeup. Rebecca is an incredibly talented hair and makeup artist based in the North West. She brought along an assistant to do hair and makeup for me and my 3 bridesmaid, and makeup for both mine and Kris’ mums. It was a bit of a hectic morning starting at 7am but Rebecca was a true professional and a calming presence throughout the day!
I wanted loose waves as I never wear my hair up normally so didn’t want to look too different on the day. I had a loose braid at the back which was pinned with sweetheart roses. The bridesmaids had gorgeous boho up dos with some more roses pinned in.
The Readings & Music
My mum walked me down the aisle to one of mine and Kris’ favourite songs – Angels by The XX. There was a bit of a scary moment where the music wouldn’t start and I was waiting outside the room wondering why everyone was awkwardly laughing! Thankfully one of our best men had an aux cable on site (not sure why anyone brings an aux cable to a wedding) so this saved the day!
We had one reading – a passage from a book called Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton which was read by one of my best friends Jen. The reading is gorgeous and described us so well that a lot of the guests thought Jen had written it for us!
We also had to choose a song to play whilst we signed the register and one for walking back down the aisle to. We had One Life Stand by Hot Chip as the register was being signed, and then walked out to All You Need Is Love by The Beatles. Kristian is a huge Beatles fan having grown up on The Wirral near Liverpool, and I love that song from the iconic wedding moment in Love Actually! Sadly none of our guests popped out of their pews to play instruments…
Our photographer was Jessica O’Shaughnessy. We found her on Instagram and absolutely loved her style of natural and colourful photos. We met her a couple of months before the wedding for an engagement shoot on one of my favourite beaches and she made us feel so at ease which was good practice for the day! On the day itself she was amazing, so helpful and calming. And the final photos were perfect.
Kristian had 3 joint best men and bought their suits from M&S. We wanted the groomsmen to tie in with the overall theme but not have the exact same suit as the groom so we went for a plain blue.
Their dresses were from Not Another Boring Bridemaid Dress in Wimbledon and the designer was Jenny Yoo. I was first drawn to the dresses by the colour (cinnamon rose) as I loved the dark blush effect. However it turned out that the colour made it almost impossible to match ties and flowers to exactly but it didn’t matter.
I loved that their cold shoulder dresses matched mine, and it was also possible to detach the sleeves later on if I had taken mine off but again we never got around to it!
The Details & Décor
Kristian’s mum is amazing at arts and crafts and made a lot of the details for us completely from scratch! We knew we wanted lawn games so she set about making a giant noughts and crosses set and a ring toss made from old beer bottles spray painted rose gold. We also bought a giant Jenga set and borrowed a croquet and boules set to give the guests some different gaming options!
Kristian’s mum also made our doughnut wall completely from scratch. I had seen an amazing pink doughnut wall on Pinterest and sent it to her and the next thing was she had bought a huge square of wood and some pink paint from B&Q to get started! We filled it with 70 doughnuts from a local bakery that they had made for us in a mixture of colours. I also ordered some personalised bags from Etsy which said “Doughnut Mind If I Do” & our names and date!
Another detail I loved which was made by Kristian’s mum was the confetti cones. She bought dried rose petals from eBay and created little cones to fill, then we organised them in little baskets from Home Bargains! Kristian’s mum knows I absolutely love Harry Potter so found an old Harry Potter book in a charity shop and used the pages to make some of the cones which was such a lovely touch. The only issue was that people used the cones to launch the whole lot of confetti at us at once which made for quite a confetti assault rather than the lovely sprinkled confetti pictures you see at other weddings!
Kristian loves beer and wanted to provide barrels for guests to pull their own pints. The venue organised barrels of different beers from a local brewery called Purple Moose. We had 4 barrels in the end that were all completely finished which was a good sign!
ICE CREAM TRIKE
We hired an ice cream trike from Hyacinth Ice Cream which was a fun addition. Kristian and I were allowed to choose 4 of our favourite flavours which were given to the guests as options along with personalised wafers.
Kris put a lot of time into making the table plan. We ordered a vintage map online and planned the tables based on places we had loved whilst travelling or lived in. We found old postcards from each of the places and used these as centrepieces. Kristian and I had a top table for 2 which we set as Boracay in The Phillippines, where we got engaged.
We love cheese and always knew we wanted a stack of cheese as our wedding cake. Kristian’s mum organised this for us with the Liverpool Cheese Company. She also laid on a spread of chutneys and crackers for the guests which were all related to different places we had been or loved, e.g. a layer of Spanish cheese as my dad is Spanish and local chutneys.
We had planned to go to Japan on honeymoon at some point in the year after the wedding, although our plans have now changed slightly as we have decided to relocate to Melbourne for a year, so you could call that an extended honeymoon! We are still planning to go to Japan from Australia next year once we get settled.
The one highlight that everyone commented were our band, The Diamond Boys. They are a completely acoustic four piece band who walk around and play their sets amongst the guests during the day. One of the most memorable moments for us was when our entire wedding party were on the lawn, in the sunshine, singing their hearts out to The Diamond Boys!
Advice For Other Couples
Try not to stress out about the weather! I spent weeks beforehand obsessing over the forecast from a number of apps as we had planned for a lot of it to be outside. I wish we hadn’t worried so much as we always had a back up plan with the tipi and indoor space. We ended up being lucky with the weather as the sun came out in the afternoon and we got the most gorgeous sunset.
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Jessica O’Shaughnessy Photography
Marquees and Events
The Diamond Boys
Scent with Love
So very beautiful. Oh how I love that moon gate flower arch!
Rachel and Kristian, thank you both so much for sharing your epic wedding story with us xo Lou