I am lucky enough to be headed very very near to today’s wedding venue for my family summer holiday in July. And this wedding has me all the more excited to explore this super beautiful part of the UK.
Leanne and Kirk tied the knot on the 6th April at Cley Windmill in Norfolk. With a capacity for 20 guests they made their wedding an intimate and personal celebration.
With a rustic feel Kirk donned tweed, the flowers looked natural and there was a gorgeous DIY stationery suite. Leanne looked radiant in her layered romantic gown and wore flowers in her hair. Divine.
Fuller Photography, thank you today for sharing these lovely images.
THE PROPOSAL | Kirk proposed in Wells-Next-to-Sea on 3rd August, 2014. Neither of us like a fuss and he knew that I would hate a big spectacle involving him going down on one knee as much as he would!
It was a just a normal Sunday afternoon, the weather forecast had been good so we had planned to drive to the coast. We stopped off at Morston and took a boat ride out to see the seals at Blakeney Point; my cousin skippers one of the boats there. We then headed to Wells for chips and a stroll along the beach. It was pretty busy that day, but Kirk managed to pop the question without anyone around us knowing what was going on. As soon as he asked me, everyone else just melted away and it felt like we were the only two people on the beach for a few moments.
Kirk had done an amazing job selecting a vintage sapphire ring and asking my dad’s permission beforehand.
THE VISION | We knew that we wanted something pretty relaxed and were keen to have a rustic feel to the day. Kirk decided early on that he wanted to wear tweed or herringbone and I knew that I wanted flowers that felt like they had been plucked from a meadow. Everything just fell into place from there.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | Being a teacher, getting engaged at the beginning of the school holidays made it easy to get the planning wheel in motion early. I was able to invest a lot of time in getting things booked and sorted. By the time I went back to school we had booked our registrar and venue, I had bought a dress and we had arranged a meeting with our photographer!
BUDGET | We didn’t set an overall budget, but had rough budgets set for individual things. We were quite lucky that we didn’t seem to have expensive tastes and most things came unintentionally under budget!
THE VENUE | Kirk has always loved Cley-Next-to-Sea and I have family in North Norfolk so know the surrounding area well. We had talked about how beautiful Cley Windmill would be as a wedding venue before we were even engaged, but I don’t think we seriously considered it, as we didn’t think we could ever slim our guest list down to the 20 guest capacity of the mill.
However, we looked at some beautiful larger venues and they just didn’t feel right for us. We looked at one another and just knew that neither of us wanted to do this in front of over a hundred people. As soon as we saw the windmill again and spoke to the staff there it just felt right. There was no turning back.
The windmill is just beautiful and we were able to treat all of our guests to bed and breakfast at the mill. We paid corkage so that everyone could bring their own drinks for the evening celebrations, which was perfect; it was like a grand house party. It was great that we could see everyone for breakfast the next day too. The staff were amazing and made sure that everything happened just as we wanted it.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | I found my shoes on the Monsoon website. I often find it difficult to find shoes to fit my feet comfortably, but these were quite wide and felt so comfortable.
I found a tweed handbag from a seller on Etsy who crafts clutch bags using Harris Tweed. I thought it would tie in the tweed from the suits.
My garter was my something old, borrowed and blue, having been worn by my mum almost 37 years ago and my sister-in-law last summer.
I also borrowed some delicate opal earrings from my mum, and my dad bought me an opal bracelet, which he gave to me as a gift on the day. I didn’t want to wear too much jewellery, as I wanted everything to look quite natural and didn’t want to draw away from details like the flowers in my hair. I had found the exact hairstyle I wanted on Pinterest and was overjoyed when Roxy, who had also styled my hair as a bridesmaid last year, recreated it perfectly during our trial.
My vintage John Lewis faux fur coat was the bargain purchase of the wedding, winning it on eBay for £15!
FINDING THE DRESS | My bridesmaid’s mum, Sandra, manages Dreams Bridal in Norwich so I knew that I would begin my dress search there. I spent the whole afternoon with her trying on every kind of dress imaginable. I surprised myself by liking pretty much all of the gowns I tried on.
When I put on ‘the’ dress, I just knew. I had already fallen in love with one dress, but this one just felt right. My mum and one of my bridesmaids were there with me and I could tell from their faces that it was the right dress. It wasn’t like any of the dress pictures I had been pinning on Pinterest and I don’t think I’d ever seen a dress quite like it. It was by Alfred Angelo and was pitched as a beach wedding dress, but I knew that the delicate layers would work well with the meadow feel to our wedding and that it would look perfect next to a tweed suit!
I hadn’t planned on wearing a veil, as I wasn’t sure if a veil would work with the hair I wanted. However, at the last moment I began to feel anxious that I wouldn’t feel ‘bridal’ enough so I went back to Dreams to try some on with my dress and fell in love with a beautiful veil with a double edging.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Formal suit hire shops didn’t really cater for what Kirk was looking for so we knew that we would have to buy suits. Luckily, Kirk found the perfect three piece suit in Next. We decided to buy just the trousers and waistcoats for the ushers and best man so that Kirk would stand out. He also wore a different tie to the others and wore a blue shirt whereas the others wore white. I had bought him a pocket watch for his birthday, which finished off the vintage look.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | Kirk’s sister did a reading for us. We took a long time choosing one. We didn’t want anything too cheesy, but I was quite keen to have something, as I didn’t want the ceremony to fly away! In the end she read ‘Love is a temporary madness’ from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.
Music is really important to Kirk so he took the lead on creating wedding day playlists. I walked in to Lou Reed’s ‘Perfect Day’, we signed the register to Barbara Lewis’ ‘Baby I’m Yours’ and we walked out to the upbeat Ray Charles’ ‘Hallelujah I love her so’.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | My bridesmaids comprised of my life long best friend, Natalie, and my university partner-in-crime Rebecca. They were amazing and really did pull out all the stops to ensure that I enjoyed the run up to the big day.
I had originally wanted steel blue dresses and then I had wanted a shade of taupe or cappuccino, but just couldn’t find the right shade. In the end I found the perfect dresses in the sale on Coast’s website. I am so glad we went for the pale pink in the end, as they worked so well with the flowers and tied everything together.
THE FLOWERS | I was most excited about the flowers, as I had seen lots of photographs of bouquets that I liked the look of. Kirk had also found a picture of a button hole that he liked, which had a blue thistle in it so when I found a bouquet comprising of pinks roses, ears of corn and blue thistles I knew that that would be the inspiration. Samantha at The Little Flower Shop really got my vision and I got excited every time we met to talk flowers!
I decided to do the venue flowers myself, as I love being creative. I went to Norwich Market a couple of days before the wedding and got an assortment of flowers, including a bunch of blue thistles to tie in with the bouquets. I had great fun gathering together bunches and putting them into jam jars.
THE CAKE | A good friend of ours recently set up her own cake design business, Vanilla Kisses Cakery, so I always knew that we would ask her to make the cake. She invited us round for a tasting, which we thoroughly enjoyed, before deciding on carrot cake, chocolate cake with caramel and chocolate ganache and lemon cake for our three tiers.
I wanted a rustic looking cake with textured buttercream rather than smooth fondant. The cake she made was exactly what I had envisioned and the best bit was that it tasted amazing.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | Due to the quirky venue, we were keen to have a photographer who had photographed the mill before. We were impressed with the mood of Karen’s photographs and loved how she had captured the mill on previous occasions. She came to meet us at our home and we booked her immediately. We’re so pleased that we did. She was completely unobtrusive and made everything so easy.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | One of my favourite parts of the wedding preparations was making the invitations. Due to the small guest list, I was able to put a lot of time into them and was really pleased with the results. I bought various papers and accessories from Hobbycraft and The Range and used brads and chalks to add details. I used a free download from Wedding Chicks to create the printed inserts.
I borrowed many of the jam jars for our table settings from my sister-in-law who got married last year. I added some details to them to tie them in with our colours and added some East of India quote charms.
I had seen the Scrabble place settings years ago on Pinterest and had always kept it in mind. I ordered letters and stands from eBay.
The mantel piece was an important focal point for us, as we were able to use it to display framed photographs of loved ones no longer with us. We also bought a pair of ‘Mr’ and ‘Mrs’ mugs in the Emma Bridgewater sale, which looked great alongside the photos filled with gypsophila.
Whilst looking for images of Cley Windmill I had stumbled across the work of local artist, Amelia Bowman. I fell in love with her collagraph print of Cley Windmill. Kirk bought the print for me as a present last year and happened to mention that we liked the idea of using her magnets as wedding favours. She offered to customise them for us with our names and wedding date. It was a lovely touch and all of our guests seemed really pleased with them. We were lucky enough to receive her Wells collagraph as a wedding present.
THE HONEYMOON | We enjoyed a city break in Cagliari, Sardinia. It was so nice to get away and just relax for a few days!
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | The whole day was full of memorable moments. We loved the fact that we were able to talk to everyone there and spend real time with them all.
Everyone was wowed by the venue and it was lovely to be able to give all of our guests the experience of staying there for a night.
One of my favourite moments was walking over to the local pub after dinner. We were the only ones in there and it really helped me to take a step back and relax. I caught up with everyone over drinks at the bar. Then we headed back and cracked open our own drinks in the windmill’s living room (which had also been our ceremony room).
I remember just looking around and seeing everyone having a good time and knowing that it had been a perfect day.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Just do what you want to do! If you only want 20 guests then go for it. It’s your day, no one else’s.
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photography | Fuller Photography
Venue | Cley Windmill
Shoes | Vivian from Monsoon
Handbag | Created With Love, Etsy
Hair | Roxy at Beautique
Make up | Paula Cowell
Bouquets & Buttonholes | The Little Flower Shop
Bridesmaids Dresses | Coast
Groom’s Tweed Suit | Next
Favours | Magnets with prints by Amelia Bowman
Jam jar signs | East of India
Mugs | Emma Bridgewater
Wedding Invitation Printables | Wedding Chicks
Cake | Vanilla Kisses Cakery
Oh my, so heartfelt.
Huge thanks goes to Leanne and Kirk for sharing their perfect nuptials with us here at WWW xo Lou