Our lovely couple were lucky with the weather and were able to hold their ceremony outdoors, and what a gorgeous backdrop it was! Meanwhile, indoors, the décor was a riot of bunting fairy lights and large light up letters like I’ve never seen before. Amy and Chris’ friends and family are a talented lot who also happen to be very generous with their time and lots of the special details were produced by them.
Amy plumped for a simply stunning Stella York gown, which fits the outdoor setting just perfectly and with Chris being in the Royal Marines, he didn’t have to think too hard about what he was going to wear! The bridesmaids wore multi-way dresses from Debenhams, which is such a great way to make sure everyone is comfortable.
The beautiful images today come courtesy of Che Birch Hayes Photography, haven’t he and wife Becky captured the love and laughter just wonderfully? Don’t miss the absolutely brilliant sparkler exit too.
THE PROPOSAL | A Christmas day surprise! After opening presents on Christmas morning (the first in our new home together), Chris ‘suddenly realised’ one of my presents wasn’t under the tree. He disappeared upstairs and returned with a sheepish look on his face. I thought he was going to tell me that he’d lost something but to my surprise crouched down next to me and asked me to be his wife!
THE VISION | We both love the outdoors and we knew straight away that the perfect location would have to have an outdoor ceremony option with a relaxed atmosphere.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | We were engaged a year and a half before we got married and so there was plenty of time for us to plan without rushing into any decisions. After booking the venue everything else gradually fell into place month by month. We were lucky to have a lot of family and friends involved and so that helped us to manage tasks leading up to the wedding day.
THE VENUE | We fell in love with Lyde Court the moment we stepped inside. A romantic 17th century stone barn, set in idyllic rural Hereford, provided the perfect setting for our idea of a relaxed and atmospheric wedding! It was an added bonus that we had the option to get married outside (weather dependent).
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | Designer – Stella York. I absolutely fell in love with my dress from the moment I tried it on. On top of feeling extremely comfortable, the open back, antique lace and the elegant chapel train made me feel like you should on your wedding day…a princess! Although I didn’t originally want one, after trying on a long sheer veil (for my mum to see) I couldn’t say no! It just finished the dress off beautifully.
FINDING THE DRESS | I knew exactly what I didn’t want which was my only starting point when looking, oops! However, the staff in Ava Rose Hamilton were incredible. After a relaxed meeting about the wedding and my likes (or dislikes as was the case) they picked out a selection of dresses they felt would suit me and our wedding day. It was so much fun sampling a variety of styles and shapes but when it came to trying on ‘the one’ I knew straight away that this was it!
GROOM’S ATTIRE | With Chris being in the Royal Marines, his outfit for the day was a no brainer – his uniform!
THE READINGS & MUSIC | I walked down the aisle to The Piano Guys ‘A Thousand Years’. Every time I listen to it I’m transported back to that moment with a tear in my eye! My brother, Jon, and good friend, Geraldine, both did readings for us during the ceremony. Jon read an extract from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres and Geraldine read a love quote from Bob Marley.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | I had four bridesmaids in total, Laura, Claire, Hollie and Meghan. Each of them good friends from different stages of my life. My beautiful bridesmaid wore sage green multiway dresses from Debut at Debenhams. We adapted the dresses so that they could suit each of their individual styles.
Our hair was done by the wonderful Hilary Read. We each opted for a hair up that suited our own individual styles. We all loved our relaxed styles and they stayed put throughout the day of celebrations.
THE FLOWERS | We opted for gypsophila, avalanche roses and eucalyptus. Our bouquets, button holes and corsages were put together by the wonderful Hibiscus Rooms. Deb the owner was fantastic and such a pleasure to deal with.
The decorative and table flowers were put together by my amazing mum who ordered the flowers from Triangle Nursery online and arranged them the day before the wedding. We were very impressed with the amount of flowers we ended up with – the smell and impact of the colour was just wonderful.
THE CAKE | Our fabulous friend Rachel kindly made our wedding cake. A three tired sponge with white chocolate and buttercream – so yummy!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Che Birch-Hayes and Becky Birch-Hayes – Literally loved these guys from the start. Extremely friendly and they captured our wedding day perfectly. It amazes me how they got the shots they did whilst being so unobtrusive amongst guests. The photos document the day, capturing emotions and moments beautifully.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | We were so lucky to have such an amazing team of family and friends crafting in the lead up to the wedding. Chris’ parents, Anne and Kim, made our incredible, dreamy wedding arch, funky light up letters and collected random accessories throughout the year which they knew would fit in with our theme. My brother and his partner, Jon and Eliza, have a soap business (All Natural Soap) and kindly made our table favours for guests – mint mojito and gin and tonic soaps (they smelt incredible) in printed hessian bags. My mum collected old books and jars for the tables to bring a bit a rustic vintage feel – we used chapter numbers to name each of the tables. She also stitched endless meters of rustic bunting to ensure the theme was continued throughout the barn. Our lovely friends, Jay and Sarah put together hospitality baskets for the toilets to ensure guests had everything they needed to freshen up throughout the day. I lost count of the things I made over the year – games, props (photo booth), accessories, place names, and endless signs – all of which were used in the end, thank goodness! The personal pieces were my favourite, particularly a pallet with a variety of rustic frames showing photos of us both as children.
THE HONEYMOON | We are due to go to Iceland at Easter, literally counting down the days to explore somewhere new together!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Chris at the end of the aisle with a big smile on his face as I walked towards him. The surprise magician Chris’ parents organised for our reception drinks and the evening. We knew nothing about it until he approached us to do some tricks – he was fantastic and so entertaining! We hired The Colts wedding band for the evening and they were amazing! They got everyone on the dance floor and made such an impact on the atmosphere for the evening. Finally our sparkler tunnel at the end of the evening, our photographers, Che and Becky did a great job of organising ‘merry’ guests to create such an effective send off.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | The day goes so quickly so make sure you take a few moments together to stop and take it all in. It is such a magical day and you will want to bottle that feeling up forever!
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | Che Birch Hayes Photography
Hair | Hair by Hilary Read
Make-up | Rachel Gardner
Dress | Stella York from Ava Rose Hamilton
Cake | Rachel Douglas
Band | The Colts
Venue | Lyde Court
Invitations | Pop Goes the Weasel
Favours | All Natural Soap
What a wonderful wedding day! Thanks so much for sharing Amy and Chris! Rachel x