By Louise Baltruschat Hollis
There is a real fun loving vibe to Ed and Pam’s wedding celebrations, thanks in part to their vintage circus theme complete with funfair and fete games. There was no doubt that their venue Preston Court was going to tick their boxes seeing as it has it’s own carousel, not to mention the stunning barns. The pair were wed on the 24th June 2017 and entertaining their guests was the key to their planning, as well as ensuring they had incredible photography to document their day. That’s where The Life Romantic stepped in and we’re loving the dreamy, beautiful images we have the honour of sharing here today.
The wedding party outfits scream style and I just know you’re going to agree wholeheartedly. The gents were suited and booted in check brown suits and bow ties, for a quirky and fun look. While Pam had her intricate gown custom made, which I have to say looked incredible on her. Her fave girls donned grey dresses and were oh so sophisticated, just take a peek at those wow factor bouquets too. Oh my!
The barn was decked in eclectic decoration, a lot of thought went into the personal music and readings, plus there was a scrumptious cake creation.
THE PROPOSAL | After more than six years together, Ed planned a weekend away in Budapest, where he surprised me with a stay in Brody House Hotel. It’s this amazing boutique hotel, each room is decorated by a different artist. We had posh dinners and trips to the thermal baths. It was very romantic; Ed made a photo book of our lives together… Graduation, our first flat, getting our dog, the last page was the question. My first word in response was “S**T” but after the initial surprise had worn off and I had already got the ring on my finger, I did say yes in the end.
THE VISION | We wanted it to be fun. Lots of games, lots of entertainment and for guests to keep discovering things throughout the day. We loved the idea of a carousel. It turned into a vintage English funfair, Victorian style, when people used to dress up for the fair to come into town.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | We had no idea how to start and Googled ‘how to plan a wedding’. I love a spread sheet and once we had the outline, everything had to be added to the spread sheet. After we found our venue, it all flowed from there. We booked photographer, caterer, hotel and DJ immediately after the venue. We then got super relaxed and forgot to plan anything for a year. It was six weeks out at Ed’s best friend’s wedding that we panicked and sorted the rest out. Our little house was covered in table decorations that we picked up from junk shops and favours that we hand made. Logistically, it was a lot of planning. Half my family is from Australia, we lived 2 hours away from the venue and most our wedding party didn’t drive.
THE VENUE | Preston Court. An absolute dreamboat of a venue. It was the only one we actually went to see and once we had a quick look around we knew it would be perfect. The owner collects and restores steam engines and the place is littered with them. The real stand out pieces are the working vintage carousel (a must on our venue tick list) and the ornate organs at each end of the barn. It’s got everything… a small island in the middle of a lake where we had the ceremony, beautiful lawn area in front of the main house and then there’s the courtyard and barn. All the staff were so helpful and made the day run smoothly.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | A bespoke, hand made Hayley J design. Blush with ivory overlay and applique. The floral epilates disguised my shoulders. I don’t think white suits me and wanted to be different but without alienating the ‘bridal experience’. It fell beautifully behind me but without the feeling of being chased by a train. Hayley found me a matching hair slide. The veil was a steal from eBay at £4.50! It was a chance shopping trip that I found my shoes in Kurt Geiger. Ed couldn’t understand why I was so excited about pink shoes, it was hard not telling him about the dress!
FINDING THE DRESS | I hated dress shopping. They weren’t what I expected and the staff I met were not inspiring. I got recommended Hayley J from one of my clients. She was amazing. She took my vision and created it. Every concern I gave her she solved. She created a dress that looked bridal but made me feel so comfortable and glamorous.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Ed wears a suit to work every day so he wanted to go for something a bit different. He’s not a big fan of the traditional top and tails so decided to try to find something tweedy. He’s incredibly fussy and struggled to find the right colour and fit, which would also suit the groomsmen. He wasn’t particularly fussed by a fancy expensive suit and eventually found what he was looking for in River Island. One thing he did insist on was a decent pair of shoes, so he splashed out on a pair of Church’s. He rounded off the outfit with a tweed waistcoat, pocket square and polka dot bow tie. The real finishing touch was a vintage pocket watch, passed down from the father of the bride.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | Totally in love with our readings and ceremony music! We are not a very soppy couple so the readings had to mean something but not make us cringe. Love is Like Owning a Dog was read by my Aunty; it summed up our Jack Russell’s and us. I Wanna Be Yours was read by one of Ed’s closest friends, as the lyrics to an Arctic Monkey’s song it paid homage to Ed’s love of music and our silly side. He’s Not Perfect was read by Mother of the Bride, it totally represents a relationship and was cute advice from my mum.
The music was sung by a Uni friend Lauren. I walked down the aisle (lawn) to Maps, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, we signed the register to Sea of Love, Cat Power and walked back to Toothpaste Kisses, Maccabees. Our first dance was Young and Beautiful, Lana Del Ray; we shuffled around badly until other guests joined us twenty seconds in.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | The bridesmaid’s dresses were so easy. Little Mistress with shoulder details to compliment my dress. The girls are three different shapes but the dress suited all of them. I let them pick their own shoes as they all have great shoe taste. Flowers in their hair by my hairdresser Katie looked pretty but my poor pregnant friend had awful hay fever. Sorry Britta!
THE FLOWERS | My grandmother was meant to come from Australia and do the flowers for us. Sadly, due to ill health she couldn’t make it so Lily Rose Flowers stepped in. Tracey did the most wonderful job. I wanted it to look like we’d gathered flowers from an English garden on our way to the wedding. The table arrangements were done by the bridesmaids and me the day before, they turned out better than we expected.
THE CAKE | The drippy style 3D cake was made by my mum and aunty. My dad and other aunty then helped decorate too. It was fruit cake, red velvet and vanilla sponge. Covered in chocolate, macaroons, meringues and sweets. Such talented family!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | We met Parri at one of my best friend’s weddings. He’s very creative and takes beautiful pictures without being tacky or staged. The Life Romantic was one of the first things we booked. He is also a complete ninja, you never notice him, which means the photos turn out really natural. The photo booth goes down a treat at the end of the night too.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Our vintage circus theme was so much fun. We collected nik naks and decorations that represented us or things we liked. I loved our favours, the jars of bon bons with gold animals on top. One of the things we were most impressed with was the bar area. We printed 200 polaroids of friends, family and us, which were hung around the bar. It was a personal touch that linked the separated bar into the rest of the party. We hired the funfair games from Tiggi at the venue. She helped us dress the venue on the morning and set up her brilliant vintage games which went down a treat.
THE HONEYMOON | We went on a mini-moon to Budapest for 4 days to get away. It’s where we got engaged so feel like we’ve been full circle there. Our big trip next year will be to Japan. It’s such a different culture, nothing we’ve experienced before so what a great excuse to go for our honeymoon.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | My favourite moment was after we had our private photos and returned to the party. We came around the corner and all our guests were having fun on the games and the carousel. It was an amazing feeling walking along with my husband and seeing all my friends and family enjoying the day we had organised.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Will it make a difference to your day or the enjoyment your guests feel? If not, it’s not worth the money. Also, think about how things photograph, that’s all you have left of the party so it might as well look great!
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Photographer | The Life Romantic
Hairdresser | Katie Bennett
Venue | Preston Court
Caterer | Tayberry Foods
Hotel | Bell Inn, Sandwich
Singer | Lauren
Dressmaker | Hayley J
Car | TC Wedding Cars
Make Up Artist | Lacey
DJ | Antony
Games and dresser| Tiggi Winkle
Wow wee, such fun!
Ed and Pam, we cannot thank you enough for sharing your day with us and many thanks to Parri for sharing these wonderful shots xo Lou
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