Super Chilled Backyard Farm Wedding

Danielle and R.J. wanted an outdoor wedding which was casual and fun for everyone involved. The day ended with the whole wedding party and most of their friends jumping into the creek! It was unplanned and a great ending to the perfect day.

“Having an outdoor wedding was important to us from the beginning as we are both much more comfortable being outside,” explained Danielle. “We took some inspiration from the black hole of Pinterest but honestly it’s nearly impossible to replicate something you see online and in the end why would you want to? Since the ceremony and reception were both outside, we wanted the lighting to be the main decoration. That is where the luminaries, lanterns and disco ball came in. Any excuse for a disco ball, really!”

Their ceremony was emotional and, of course, included their puppy. “My dad walked me down the aisle to George Harrison singing If Not For You. George is our favourite Beatle. R.J.’s best man was holding our pup, Tyson, through the whole ceremony. Our officiant, Steve, has known us both for years and after greeting everyone he talked a little bit about us and the natural progression of our love… There was much crying. Then he read two passages that R.J. and I picked out. The first being from The Velveteen Rabbit and the second a paragraph from The Amber Spyglass. R.J. and I have a hard time being the centre of attention, even on our wedding day, so we decided to save our vows for our honeymoon. Steve later sent me a transcript of the ceremony and at the end he had written, ‘By the power of Grayskull, I now pronounce you married.’ It was his own personal challenge not to say that out loud!”

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A Mermaid & A Viking Get Married: Rainbows, Sunflowers & Vintage Hot Air Balloons

Emma and Rayner’s wedding theme started out as ‘vintage sunflowers and hot air balloons’, which quickly expanded to include rainbows too. The whole wedding was DIY and was full of activities for their guests and little nods to all the different things they both love.

“We both love vintage styling,” began Emma, “and I particularly love vintage clothes and shoes. We both collect antique curios and oddities. The hot air balloon aspect is in reference to our late son, seeing them as a link to the skies. The rainbows developed naturally through the multi-colour of the air balloons and also linked into our rainbow baby, Eric. Almost every guest commented on the uniqueness of having it all DIY and what a showing of our personalities it was. We wanted to incorporate different aspects of our personalities everywhere so we had little glints of different things throughout the day. For instance, we are both really into history so the table names were historical characters.”

Their vast range of activities included outdoor games, leaving messages for the bride and groom, and an I Spy game with prizes. “The wedding was mainly outdoors and we had a range of outdoor games like quoits, basketball and giant connect four. We had two tables with activities on, including a thumbprint guestbook made to look like balloons floating a hot air basket, a teapot with notelets for people to write us messages for us to read on our first anniversary and advice cards with spaces for a little doodle of the writer. This proved to be hilarious when we read them back! We had ‘I Spy’ cards was a game with lists of things for people to photograph and prizes for the best entries.”

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Ten Questions to Ask Your Wedding Photographer

Wedding planning may be stressful, but you should be able to rely on your chosen suppliers and wedding professionals. Asking the right questions will help you work out which suppliers are best for you. In this new series we’ll be talking you through the kind of things you might want to ask a potential vendor before you book. First up, wedding photographers.

Sophie Elliott is both a bride-to-be and wedding photographer so she’s the perfect person to shed some light.

Choosing your perfect photographer can be a long and difficult process. As a bride-to-be and wedding photographer, I know this only too well. Before you book your photographer, take the time to sit down with them and ask them these questions either in person or via email. You don’t want to find out on the day or after the wedding that they weren’t right for you.

1. How far in advance should I book you?
In general, you should start looking at potential photographers a year or more in advance. Many photographers, however, will accept last-minute bookings and may even offer a discount. Peak wedding season in the UK is May to September, and most photographers will get booked up very early on, but if you’re having a mid-week wedding or winter wedding you may be able to book just a few months beforehand. Make sure to ask your photographer about their availability, and ask them to pencil you in and inform you if anyone else inquires about your date.

2. How would you describe your style?
There are several styles of wedding photography, from documentary and reportage to fine art and high-key, so it’s definitely worth researching which style you prefer before you book your photographer. Would you rather have informal, candid photographs or lots of posed pictures? The style of your photographer will massively impact the end result. Take a look at previous examples of their work before you decide to book, to ensure that they are shooting in the style you desire.

3. How will you interact with us on the day?
Similar to a photographer’s photographic style, they will also have a style of shooting. Some photographers prefer to stay out of the way and capture images from a distance, only stepping in to pose their subjects, while others will be heavily involved in the action. Do you want someone who will be by your side all day long, or someone you will barely notice? There are advantages and disadvantages to both, so it’s entirely up to you what you would prefer.

4. What equipment do you use?
The brand of camera doesn’t matter; nor does the amount of lenses. What does matter is how prepared they are. A good wedding photographer should have some form of external flash, such as a flashgun or off-camera light. It’s also worth asking whether their camera is full frame or cropped sensor. A full-frame camera is preferable as it will impact the amount of detail they can capture in a photograph and how well the camera will perform in low lighting.

5. What does your package include?
This is an important question, because while some photographers will include everything in their package, others will have extras available as add-ons. Check whether you will have to pay extra for travel, how they will deliver their photographs (USB, CD, or download?), how many hours they will be at your wedding for, and if a pre-wedding engagement shoot is included or not. You will want to make sure you are clear on what is and isn’t included, to avoid spending extra money later on.

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Vintage Family-Focused Wedding (Re-)Planned in Four Days!

Imagine planning your whole wedding, only to have to RE-PLAN it all just four days before! Well that’s exactly what happened to Chantelle and Simon’s but luckily they kept their cool and still pulled off an amazing day. Less than a week to go and the couple found out their venue wasn’t ready to host them. They quickly jumped into action and managed to rearrange the whole thing. The one silver lining of the unfortunate last minute venue change was that the day, that was originally going to cost £17,000, only ended up costing them just £6000!

“Due to the original venue being cancelled we saved thousands by getting married at the town hall and having the reception at a local venue”, began Chantelle. “In the end it worked out absolutely perfect for us and we wouldn’t have changed a thing. Despite everything that happened we promised not to stress or turn something so special into something negative.”

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Rock n Renovation Homewear Haul: Things I’ve Bought & Things I Want!

Shell de Mar Photography

Things have been moving very slowwwwwly for the past few weeks. I have a pathological need to always be doing something productive, so it’s been quite frustrating to not feel like we’ve made any progress. But I keep telling myself that a) we’re really, really busy with work stuff right now and b) there is literally no rush. We are perfectly happy with the house as it is (although it’s a little rough around the edges!) and we’re going to be here FOREVER. I also know that if we got everything done really quickly, in five years time I’d want to change it all again anyway!

So I don’t really have any proper updates or developments for you this week so instead I thought I’d focus on something fun – SHOPPING.

I am suddenly OBSESSED with all things interiors. Our old place was so small that even though I wanted to fill it with knick knacks, trinkets and about 76 pink chairs, it was an impossibility (which made my husband very happy – ha!) But, sorry Gareth, now we have space to spare I am on a mission to buy All. The. Pretty. Things.

And because sharing is caring, here are some things I’ve bought for the house recently.

Copper Pans: Lakeland, from £63.99.

I’ve been dreaming about owning copper pans forever and these were the best priced (for really good quality) that I found. We got the 16 and 20 inch saucepans and we also plan to get the frying pan and stockpot when funds allow. The only thing is, they do tarnish with heat. I quite like the patina of an over-used copper pot, but if anyone has any tips on how to polish them up to keep them looking their best please let me know!

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An Alcohol-Free Summer Gathering with Cake… and a DIY Dip-Dyed Wedding Dress!

Katinka and Andy met on Livejournal in 2008, and after finally meeting in person, it was love at first sight. They were married in May in Belgium and there wedding was themed around the things they love – Toy Story (check out the bride’s shoes!), summer gatherings with friends and cake!

“Whenever we have people over I bake cake and make lemonade”, began the bride. “We just sit and talk the afternoon away, enjoying our food and drinks and we play the occasional game of Kubb. It’s one of the things we love the most, so we just did that for the wedding, but instead of a small group of friends, there were about 70 people!”

“Our wedding was like an afternoon tea/ garden party, without the sandwiches and just more cake. Because cake makes everyone happy and that is exactly what we wanted. There were scones, cakes, homemade lemonades and hot beverages. We didn’t have any beer or wine, only some cider. I don’t drink any alcohol and Andy only ever drinks the occasional cider. We wanted it to be our day, our party. We would never have wine and beer at a party, so we thought, what the heck, why not just get rid of beer and wine for our wedding too?! This saved us a lot of money. The atmosphere was very relaxed. There were people playing lawn games, eating cake, talking, enjoying the sun. Just the kind of party we love.”

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