A very warm welcome to Samantha and Matthew with their Shustoke Barn wedding held on the 2nd December 2019 in beautiful Warwickshire. They embraced the winter season with all the cosy vibes, a stunning rich burgundy colour scheme and twinkling lights. I also love the modern twist running though their celebrations with stylish and on trend elements. They added cool painted perspex signs, pampas grass in the opulent flower arrangements and a gold leaf adorned cake creation. I also love the star Christmas decorations for place names and favours, such a wonderfully festive touch which guests can use year after year.
There were also some amazing outfits. Samantha donned a dramatic fit and flare lace gown with epic train, Matthew along with his groomsmen wore grey tweed suits with burgundy ties to match the elegant bridesmaid dresses. So much style.
Huge thanks today goes to Oxi Photography for sharing with us these incredible shots of a joy filled and romantic day.
We travelled up to Edinburgh, one of our favourite places to visit, to celebrate our 4 year anniversary together. On the Friday, we went for a walk up Calton Hill as you have such a beautiful view of Edinburgh City. Matt went awfully quiet and I thought he was just out of breath from the walk. We walked to a quiet spot and he said I have a gift to give you for our anniversary. He read out a poem he had written for me, which at the end said… will you marry me.
We wanted our wedding to feel warm, cosy and romantic, so we chose to get married around Christmas. (Plus, we both hate being hot)
The Planning Process
As we didn’t have a big budget, we did a lot of the styling and decorating ourselves. My Dad made all my centrepieces for us which looked absolutely amazing. We combined favours and name tags to save on cost, so I handmade clay stars with guests names on, so our family and friends could hang them on their Christmas tree and be reminded of our special day. We also hand made our photo booth from steel and used foamex for the frame. We bought an Instax camera with film which the guests used all day. I also sourced all the candle and bud vases from various shops for a reasonable price, this meant we could sell them once finished to recoup some money. As I am a graphic designer, I put my skills to use and bought some cheap perspex to hand paint little signs around the venue, to add a nice touch. The day before the wedding we were lucky enough that we could go and style the venue ourselves, so this also saved us money.
Initially, we weren’t keen on going to see Shustoke Barns as we knew it was such a popular venue and we wanted something a bit different. But after viewing around 7 venues, we went to see Shustoke, as it was a beautiful venue which was nice and local to us. As soon as I walked in, I was overcome with emotion and teared up, and knew straight away it was the one. Thankfully, Matt loved it too.
Our amazing Florist, The Lanes bought our vision to life. Hannah took my Pinterest moods and bettered them to create our beautiful bouquets and centrepieces. I also wanted a flower installation at the altar, and came up with the idea of having a floral spray filled with our bouquet flowers and pampas grass with a few candles. The flowers was one of our biggest spends, as they were very important to me. Flowers make everything look beautiful and romantic. We gifted our flowers to family members to keep. I dried my bouquet so I could keep some as a memento of the day.
We ordered a last minute cake from Solihull cake artists. We just wanted something simple but a design that complemented wedding. We added some gold leaf to tie in with the décor.
Your Outfits & Accessories
I knew from the start I wanted an Enzoani gown, and the specific one which I was desperate to try on was the Katerina dress. Luckily, we found a bridal boutique, Mimi Toko, in Derbyshire which ordered the dress in for me as no one else in the West Midlands had it in stock. What I ended up loving the most about the dress was the Latte underskirt which made the Ivory lace stand out. Matt and his groomsmen got their suits from Duncan James in Walsall. He chose a Grey tweed to complement our colour scheme.
I am quite particular about my makeup, so I decided to do my own make up for the day. My hair was done by the wonderful Sonya Jayne Bridal Hair who gave me the most incredible Hollywood wave.
My bridesmaids all had a relaxed, curled half hair up, as they all felt most comfortable with their hair down.
The Readings & Music
We chose a live performance of Florence and the Machines ‘Never Let Me Go’, because we both lover her and her voice is incredible.
Duncan James, Walsall
All bridesmaids dresses were bought from Davids Bridal in Birmingham City centre.
We went for a burgundy colour to complement the winter season and colour scheme of the wedding.
We searched long and hard for our photographer, as this was so important to us and a big investment. We came across Oxana on a website and fell in love with her natural documentary style of photography. Oxana put us at ease straight away in front of the camera (which we are usually not). She was awesome from start to finish and had such a positive, energetic energy through out the day which kept motivating us.
Oxana is such a creative photographer, she captured so much love, laughter, emotions and all the little details within our wedding. We’re so happy we have stunning photographs to look back on and are very honoured she was able to capture our very special day.
We stumbled across Roo Stain and fell in love with his natural videography. We have one word for Roo, and that is… Legend! Equally an amazing person as he is a videographer.
He captured our day so perfectly and you could really feel the love through his film. All our family, friends, and friends of friends have said it is the most wonderful wedding video they have seen, and we couldn’t agree more (even if we are biased).
We have chose to go Norway for our Honeymoon, as we have both wanted to go there for such a long time and enjoy the landscape and snow!
Our most memorable moment was of each other, when we first seen each other down the aisle.
Advice For Other Couples
The absolute number one thing I would advise couples to invest in for their wedding is a videographer. I had to work hard to convince my now husband that we should get a videographer. We both have very high standards when it comes to photos and video, so he wasn’t sure we could afford someone of a high enough calibre to create what we both had in mind. We managed to save enough and it was one of the most important decisions we made together. Couples aren’t lying when they say that their wedding flies past – like a blur. By the time you’ve sat down and thought about whats happened, its midnight and you’ve not even got chance to speak to half of your guests.
Having a talented videographer is the only solution to be able to relive your wedding day after day. They will capture moments that you forgot happened and moments you weren’t even there to witness. The joy that comes from watching a professionally edited video of your wedding is indescribable. You feel like you’re in your very own movie.
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Duncan James of Walsall
Samantha and Matthew thank you both ever so much for sharing with us your wonderful wedding story xo Lou