We are sharing the Sweden destination wedding of Joe and Lina today who were hitched on the 15th June 2019 in the most beautiful rustic barn. They held their ceremony and reception in the magical barns and decorating the barn was a real labour of love from their nearest and dearest who crafted and created Joe and Lina’s dream wedding weekend. They had a stunning boho feel to their styling; think epic flower arch at the top of the aisle, cool signs and a cake table to name a few.
Then there were the super stylish outfits. Lina designed her own gown, which was a low back lace cap sleeve dress complete with flowers in her hair, she looked amazing. Joe and the groomsmen wore navy suits, bow ties and braces for a very cool style. Meanwhile the bridesmaids donned pretty navy multi-way dresses, didn’t everyone look so brilliant? Do also look for festoon lighting, bountiful bouquets and romantic sunset portraits.
Clara Cooper Photography thank you ever so much for sharing with us these mesmerising images of a truly special celebration.
After a pretty eventful couple of years building our home, Lina planned a trip away to Madeira:
A lot of people have asked about our engagement. Most of whom, prior to the event, exclaiming to Joe: “When will you get around to asking her?” But there has always been a method and logic leading up to popping the question… What else would you expect from Joe? Living wonderful, young and careless lives only lasts so long, we are told. Although we don’t fully believe this, Joe wanted to ensure he created a home for Lina before inviting her to share it with him for the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, the process took longer than he expected, and took up rather more energy. (“Always the time optimist!” Lina would exclaim over the course of the build.) So the engagement, obviously, had to go with the flow. Luckily the additional time allowed Joe and Lina to come together and tackle what life kept throwing at them, as a team! To a degree, this ‘test’ enabled them to become more synchronised, filling the chinks in each other’s armour, and finding out how well they could support each other no matter the challenge ahead of them. Which is good to confirm, if you get the chance, prior to popping the question! So when the house was done, there was only one thing left to do…… Lina sensed they needed a holiday! So she started planning a little adventure. Joe, sensed an opportunity, and so let Lina take the lead. What became of this exercise? An incredibly organised, itemised, illustrated, and exciting trip itinerary… but one that still had a surprise in store!
Madeira was the island of choice, and Lina had planned for us to see it all! To be totally honest, Joe had no idea where it was originally! But this opportunity was too good to miss… Joe aimed to disrupt Lina’s plan… On the first day! The second test of Lina’s endurance, post house-build, came in the form of a 16km hike up the equivalent of 328 floors (over twice as many as the Burj Khalifa) to the top of Pico Ruivo (Madeira’s tallest mountain). Where, all alone, Joe tentatively searched for the perfect spot to ask the most important question(s)…Joe took Lina in his arms and asked:
Joe: “Will you promise me you will keep going on adventures with me when we are grey and old?
Joe: “Will you still take care of me when my back gives in or I get ill?”
Joe: “Will you always humour me geeking out about ventilation systems and other engineering things?”
Joe: “Well now that you have answered the important questions… Will you marry me?”
Lina tried to keep a straight and sombre face. She failed.
Lina: “Of course, baby! I would love to!”
So then physically, and metaphorically we were on top of the world!… Until we remembered we had to walk all the way back down to the car! The rest of the trip was almost a ‘pre-honeymoon’ for us, and what better way to start our engagement than by a week full of adventures together!
To find a place near Lina’s home that would be personal, capturing the Swedish summer and representing our combined design style. We wanted to gather our family and friends in a rustic barn surrounded by fields and in a time of the year when the sun never sets. In our eyes the nicest and most unique time of the year.
We wanted something considered yet informal, almost an invitation to getting to know us better. Every detail considered, but nothing too ‘precious.’ We wanted a memorable space to capture the day that we could come back to in future that was close to nature and therefore close to our hearts.
The Planning Process
It was fun to start a new project together. Starting with choosing the venue. We knew it would be a Swedish wedding but not where in Sweden. After our engagement we started to plan the wedding. It was about 1.5 years before the wedding date.
It was intense to plan a wedding in another country but so glad we chose to do it in Lina’s home town because it meant the planning year was a year when we often went home to sort things out with caterers, venue, hair and make up and we could also spend more quality time with her side of the family.
Pinterest and Instagram were a great source of inspiration and we created a mood board to narrow down our choices. As Lina likes planning she made a detailed break down to what we need.
It was a DIY wedding and we got help from our lovely friends to realise our dreams both in England to prepare decoration and post it over and in the days before the wedding when we decorated the barn. It was organised yet intense, with tasty cinnamon buns, fun and laughter in the summer house and sauna leading up to the big event.
Just the right amount. :)
A large rustic barn surrounded with fields available June to august. The barn is divided into two spaces. A lower level gravelled area which is perfect for mingling and the ceremony if you want to do it in the barn or you can choose to do it in the grass area outside. The other half of the barn is one floor up. Beautiful wooden flooring which is perfect for dancing and dinner. It can fit about 100. The ceiling has beautiful big beams. As it is an old working barn for drying hay it still has the wide gaps between the timber cladding on the walls which means that as the sun sets it lights up the whole upper space where the dinner is.
We loved that it had different levels and spaces and we could get access to it earlier in the week which gave us plenty of time to decorate it to the way we wanted. The owners were lovely, and it felt special to be so close to home with the ability to drive past at any time in the future and remember the event.
Blomsterlandet Karlstad. Lina has selected what she liked on Pinterest and created a mood board of the kind of flowers and colours she would like. From that the girl in the flower shop was super helpful and created a beautiful image of Lina’s dream bouquet.
The Readings & Music
Here comes the bride! Music – Beyonce – Smash into you
First reading – He Never Leaves The Seat Up… (Read by Malin, Bridesmaid)
Vows & exchange of rings
A love song – Tom Walker – Just You and I
Words of wisdom
Second reading – THE MEANING OF LOVE. by Krina Shah. (Read by Sarah, Mother of the Groom
The new Mr & Mrs Stuart make their exit – Honne – Good together
Your Outfits & Accessories
Dress – Lina designed her own dress because she couldn’t find what she was after and as a designer it was fun to be able to design her own dress. Ivory and Grace were super helpful and accommodated all of her requirements. Fortunately, Joe was unaware of how complicated this process was, but was definitely happy with the result!
Shoes – Paradox London Pink – Women’s White Conchita Mid Block Heel T-bar Shoes. Lina chose these shoes because they had block heels which made it easier to walk on gravel, grass, fields and the forest. As we had an outdoor wedding this was a must. Lina is not used to walking in heels and these were super comfortable.
Swarovski earrings and flowers in her hair.
Jacket, Waistcoat and shirt – Sam at Dress2Kill was hugely accommodating of Joe’s specific requirements. Considering Joe usually throws on the first thing he finds in the wardrobe, it was surprising how much time and effort was put into the particular cloth and build of the final ensemble. Especially as it seems such a simple selection in its final incarnation. Joe didn’t want a conventional suit for the wedding, but a more accessible and reusable look for smart events in the social calendar. With some very welcome support from Jesse and PJ, and of course a mood board developed with Lina, the wool worsted jacket, matching waistcoat and twill shirt got the thumbs up. In addition, Dress2Kill tailored a pair of Hammond & Co. burgundy chinos to link to a pair of olive suede Loake Lincoln slip on shoes. A knitted bow tie in burgundy finished off the look.
Bride Hair – Salong Idun Karlstad
Make up – I Make You Karlstad – Anamaria Hässler
The Details & Décor
This was a bit of a labour of love with long nights discussing and scheming, extensive research on Pinterest and Instagram, as well as some time designing the final touches. Luckily we had quite an aligned approach, and with Lina taking the helm in planning what was needed, it became quite a systematic process in the end.
We reached out to our friend Tom, who fortunately has a wedding stationery business with his wife (madebywoodandwood.com), to help deliver the magazine and some of the interior décor. In addition, the Best Man PJ just so happens to be an incredible joiner (PJLC.co.uk) so he churned out a pallet full of timber items deform cake stands to a ‘love swing’. But to be totally honest, the biggest success of the wedding was how well our closest friends and family came together to turn what was essentially a working hay shed to the magnificent space we celebrated our wedding in. Nicole, Chloe and Fliss (ottihome.co.uk) were out foraging in the woods with Lina collecting local, fresh flowers and birch trees for the archway and internal and external decorations, whilst some off the team built curtains and scaled the barn with meters of festoon lighting!
All in all, the details and décor for the wedding we designed was only possible due to having an amazing team around us leading up to the wedding.
We chose to not have a traditional wedding cake but instead celebrate the Swedish tradition of FIKA = the age old tradition of conversation, company and of course cookies! Seven of them to be precise, unless you wanted to be described as stingy! One must appreciate the requirement for a good ‘natter’ over a coffee and cakes! What else would you do between meals? As such we have a lovely selection for you appreciation. Just remember, sharing is caring! #Lagom.
We can’t choose the right cake at the best of times. And seeing as this is supposed to be our best time, why then would we make you choose? As such, some wonderful people have created a fabulous selection of cakes for your choosing and enjoyment!
Multiway bridesmaid dress in navy blue.
The bridesmaids, Sara, Malin and Nicole could choose whatever shoes they preferred and how they wanted their hair. Daniel had a blue navy suit trousers to match the girls, also from Hammond & Co. so as to tie win with the groomsmen. He also had a white shirt, navy braces and knitted tie from asos.
The best man Pj and Toastmaster Jesse came dressing in matching Navy jackets and twill shirts also made by Dress2Kill. The pair wore a knitted tie to differentiate them from Joe, whilst obviously keeping the look connected. They were accompanied with the same burgundy trousers and Loake slip on shoes.
The groomsmen Tom, Jordan, Andreas and James were given a more relaxed look with twill white shirts and matching burgundy trousers. These were paired with contrasting navy coloured braces, knitted bow tie and slip on shoes.
All flowers by Blomsterlandet.
Croatia for mini moon to just lie in the sun to relax. After a few months of saving we went to Bali…..
Lucy had already made it through a very considered and ruthless selection process, with tens of photographers having been thoroughly scrutinised both in Sweden and the UK. So when our first conversation felt so relaxed and personal, we knew immediately we wanted her to record our special day. She was extremely accommodating and so positive and flexible when it came to the event. She flew over to Sweden with a second shooter and effortlessly slipped into the crowd getting on with anyone and everyone. Apart from the pre-wedding shoot where we wanted to get some more informal photos out in nature and the more ‘official’ shots, she seemed to disappear into the background taking incredibly personal and intimate shots of all of the guests. This isn’t supposed to be an advertisement for her in any way, but we genuinely couldn’t ask for a better process and result!
Clara Cooper Photography
- The vows.
- Getting some time for each other in the forest and at sun set. (Whilst we completely forgot about the photographers!)
- Speeches and all the fun things our friends did to embarrass and make fun of us.
- All the love we got from people!!!
- Having three days with friends and family. (First day with games and dinner, wedding day and then fika in Linas aunt and uncles garden.)
- In seeing how the families and friends truly connected, which was really quite special!
Advice For Other Couples
Do your own thing. Forget about everyone else or what anyone else wants for your day! It’s the only time you can be a bit demanding of your friends and family, and it will probably turnout that they over deliver on what you think is asking too much. This event should only happen once, so make it something you can be proud of, something you can laugh about, or cry over! It is a whirlwind that is over so quickly, even if you try to spread it over 3 days. So just enjoy it. And on that note… trust the people you put in charge of making the day happen! You need to focus on just enjoying the day… let them make sure it all runs smoothly!
Credit Where Credit Is Due
Clara Cooper Photography
Pink by Paradox
Bouquets & Buttonholes
How wonderful! Did you check out their dreamy film too? It’s well worth a watch.
Thanks ever so much to Joe and Lina for sharing their special wedding story with us xo Lou