By Rachel Harrison
Today we bring you ‘Brollyfest’, the colourful and relaxed festival nuptials of Bruce and Holly. Their wedding took place on the 27th May 2018 at Spring Cottage in Rivington. The grounds turned out to be the festival wedding venue of their dreams and they went to town with colourful décor, crafty touches and those gorgeous ribbon backs for the chairs. I’m a big fan of the florals too. A wonderful array of colours but in soft tones and those bouquet ribbons are just perfect.
I think one of my favourite aspects of their wedding has to be the photography workshop that was run for the children and teenagers during the reception. What a fantastic way to keep the younger guests occupied and it sounds like they had some brilliant pictures from it too. Genius!
Bruce and Holly chose Emma B Photography to capture their day and I think you’ll agree that the resulting images are absolutely beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing them Emma.
The proposal was planned a few weeks in advance. We had planned a trip to Thailand following Holly graduating as a mental health nurse. We visited a beautiful Island Koh Phi Phi and Bruce arranged a candlelit dinner on the beach alone as a surprise on Holly’s Birthday. Bruce popped the question after the meal.
We are renowned amongst our friends for throwing house parties, so we wanted our wedding to be the extension of fun, games and music that we share often with our friends. We took our names Bruce and Holly and came up with the idea of “Brollyfest”, something our friends playfully call us. We aimed for a festival theme that we wanted to run throughout the day, with lots of vibrant colours. We went into planning with the philosophy of “if everyone around us is happy, then we will be too”. So the majority of the focus was trying to ensure our guests had fun and felt included our wedding, by inviting them to play key roles within it.
The invites we made ourselves and created Festival lanyards for each guest. We based these on previous lanyards we have been given at festivals and many guests wore them on the day!
We had heard nightmare stories about planning a wedding, but on the whole we found the process really easy. Using spreadsheets to manage guests, food choices, transport etc was really handy when mailing people. All the businesses we worked with were great and we think they really appreciated our approach with them, we gave them a brief and we let them get on with what they are good at and let them use their creativity to bring the wedding to life. The girls at Spring Cottage listened to our crazy ideas and helped us bring them to life.
Spring Cottage in Rivington. This felt like the perfect venue from the moment we first visited. Rosie and Jennie, two sisters, were personable and helped to create a beautiful environment for us. Bunting lining the path up to the cottage, fire pits and fairylights lining the trees helped make the perfect setting. The girls also catered for the wedding, doing sharing platters for starters and a BBQ main which was cooked on a huge fire pit.
Groom and Groomsmen: Slaters Menswear Preston. They wore blue slim fit suits, white shirts, blue tweed waistcoat and sky blue tie and hankies. We felt the tweed was in keeping with the relaxed vibe. All groomsmen were able to choose their own shoes and the wackier the better! Bruce wore sky blue shoes from Topshop. As a wedding day gift, Holly gave Bruce a silver pocket watch which he also wore.
Holly wore a Sassi Holford Dress – a strapless dress with a lace overcoat and jewelled ‘Enzoani’ belt, drop earrings, all from Dreamcatcher Bridal based in Kirkham, Lancashire. Shoes from ‘Roland Cartier’ Debenhams. Flower crown was made bespoke by Lotus Floral Art.
A family friend made the cake – Kelly Lee.
She drew a picture of the cake based on my ideas and perfectly made one complete with his and hers wellies on top and bunting with Glastonbury style letters to spell out “Brollyfest”.
There was no dessert following the main meal. Instead we asked certain family members and friends to contribute to a dessert table labelled “The great wedding bake off”. This enabled day and night guests to help themselves!
Bridal hair was done by Megan Marie Hair who was fantastic at taming Holly’s crazy curly hair. Holly wanted a relaxed up do that a flower crown could intertwine with (flower crown by Lotus Floral Art).
Bridesmaids hair was done by Sarah Cadley who did a different style for each bridesmaid.
Makeup was done by Sonara Parker who did bride and the majority of bridesmaids makeup.
Bridesmaids dresses from Chi Chi London. Bought online and tea style dresses were chosen to flatter each bridesmaids’ body shape. Sky blue was chosen because we felt a light colour fitted with the theme and was easy to mix with other colours for the bouquets etc. Each bridesmaid bought their own shoes, the only criteria was that they were silver and each bought silver sandals to make sure they could dance the night away!
Music down the aisle was provided by a steel band called Band One. They played Jason Mraz “I’m Yours” when Holly walked down the aisle and then played Jess Glynne “Hold My Hand” when the ceremony was finished. We felt a steel band was a good choice to provide a different type of music in the day and it was a small nod to Holly’s Caribbean roots as she has family from Montserrat in the West Indies. The steel band played as guests arrived and after the ceremony up until the marquee.
During the ceremony, bridesmaid Laura read a poem called “The Art of Marriage” by Wilferd Peterson.
In the evening, we had paired up family members and friends to complete DJ sets before the band, during the interval and afterwards. We felt this was in keeping with the festival theme and allowed each set of DJs to choose their own theme eg pop, R&B etc. The DJ sets were done in the wooden DJ booth where we had disco lights and Laura and Micaela (bridesmaids) even brought silver jackets and funky glasses to wear during their set!
The band we chose were called “The Rush”, who have just won Best Band North West 2019 in the Wedding Industry Awards. Gavin sang lead and the whole band were amazing, especially the saxophonist. They set up outside so we could have the dancefloor outside and they got in the middle of the crowd, keeping the party going. Bruce loves karaoke and they played his song “Rappers Delight” so that he could have his time on stage!
The Flower Shop by Morgan who are based in Garstang Lancashire did the flowers and buttonholes. Holly asked for bouquets with wild flowers and a range of colours. They used flowers which were locally sourced and tied these with ribbon – sky blue and white for bridesmaids and multi coloured ribbon for Holly.
The buttonholes continued the wild flower theme and we bought Lego characters of Bruce, each groomsman and father of the groom and bride to place in the buttonhole. We felt this was a personal touch which each person would like!
Emma Billsborough was our chosen photographer who captured the day perfectly! Her style of photography worked well with the mix of colours. She also had support from Sam Ward as her supporting photographer.
We also had mini photographers. Bruce runs an after school photography business, so one of his employees ran a photography lesson for the children and young teens whilst the meal was underway in the marquee. This kept them busy and we got some amazing photos from them!! Each had their own camera and seemed to really enjoy trying to get the best photos.
Pretty Little Parties were responsible for the décor inside the marquee and the ceremony decorations. Jen from PLP was amazing from the start, meeting with Holly a couple of times to go through details (The aisle and marquee were a surprise for Bruce). She managed to create the vision we wanted and even more. Explosion of colour and a variety of different wild flowers. Wellies, shepherd hooks, tea lights, log slices, gin bottles and more! The centrepiece for the aisle was the arch which had multicoloured flowing ribbons.
The ribbons on the seats were created by the Mother of the Bride Helen! She brought to life Holly’s Pinterest vision using different style ribbons and flowers.
We had a vision of creating a ceiling of brollies to cover the dance floor after we had seen this in Dubai. Bruce and Paolo (best man) were responsible for trying to recreate this and did a great job hanging multi coloured brollies across the dance floor area. This was interesting when the wind picked up!
America Roadtrip: New York – Las Vegas – San Diego – California – with an overnight stop in Iceland to go to the Blue Lagoon on the way home. Three weeks of travelling as we both have always had the travelling bug.
Bruce: The most special moment was turning round in the aisle to see Holly in her dress for the first time, I have never had a bigger smile in my life.
Also, the children working with the photography teacher capturing moments of the wedding for us it was great to see them involved and making new friends, and the photographs we got back at the end were amazing.
Holly: Walking down the aisle and seeing Bruce beaming back at me. Never felt happier.
I also loved the outdoor dance floor as it felt like we had achieved our festival vibe!
Anything is possible! And just enjoy planning and the day, you will want to relive it a million times over.
Emma B Photography
Chi Chi London
Megan Marie Hair
What a fun day you had ‘Brolly’! Thank you so much for sharing everything with us today. Rachel x
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