Cat and Andrew’s September wedding had no theme other than them wanting it to pay homage to the West Country, where they live. A lot of things were found cheaply or homemade. The bride wore a dress by La Redoute, the groom was in Topman and the bridesmaids, ASOS. The cake was made by the bride’s mum and they also arranged all the flowers themselves.
“While we have nothing against a good theme, I don’t think we consciously went for anything too specific”, said Cat. “Our love of the West Country definitely shone through, but we basically just took all our favourite things and put them together in a tumbledown barn! Wildflowers, candlelight, a massive full moon, camp fires, live music, locally sourced food and drink. Cider With Rosie meets bohemian gin palace? Midsummer Night’s Dream meets Wurzels gig?!”
“I love wild swimming and have been visiting Farleigh River Swimming Club, next door to our venue, since I was a kid”, she continued. ” The vague idea that a morning dip would be a good way to shake post-wedding hangovers led us to check out the neighbouring farm. It’s stunning setting and reputation for excellent cream teas sealed the deal. From that point on, the surroundings dictated the direction the wedding took. The barn was a ‘proper’ barn, with swallows in the rafters and piglets in the yard, so it was never going to be a white linen and fine china kind of a do.”
We’re just getting into the depths of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, but our Southern brothers and sisters have their winter weddings in July. Danielle and Zak, from Melbourne, were married at The Willows, the perfect place for a cosy and intimate winter wedding.
“When I was little I was always obsessed with my parents wedding photos”, began Danielle. “They got married in a beautiful lush garden in the 70s, mum wore a beautiful lace dress and dad had an amazing navy suit. They looked so happy and adorable with their long wavy hair and natural blooming flowers. I wanted something with a similar feel for our wedding.”
“We didn’t really have a theme, we just went with what we liked. After we got engaged we knew pretty quickly we wanted an evening winter wedding with lots of candles. We had mismatched vintage jars filled with lots of natural flowers for centrepieces on the tables with the occasional skull. Luckily we both have pretty similar taste so we agreed on most things. It took us a long time to find the right venue though; we had a lot of fun looking at different venues, as we would turn it into little day trips or excuses for delicious lunches!”
Festival weddings aren’t going anywhere, which makes me very happy indeed! I mean, what could be better than hanging out in the sunshine, listening to your favourite music and dancing late into the night?!
Becs and Chris were married at The Winter Garden at Sennowe Park, Norfolk. They hosted their reception in a tipi on the bride’s parent’s farm. “We always said that when we got married we wanted a festival feel”, said the bride. “Festival for us meant relaxed vibes, happy music and street food! We love food and that was pretty much the most important bit for us. We got Manjit and Fish& to drive down from Leeds because we love their award-winning food so much! I guess it’s quite unusual to have Gujarati food at a non-Indian wedding but we love curry and Manjit’s is incredible. As is Fish& – we had three types batters for our fish pieces! Trumpet & Crumpet provided amazing canapés and delicious British desserts for us.”
“Since the farm is reasonably remote, we let people camp over in one of the fields too”, she continued. “We also had my mum doing the ceremony which made it pretty unique – not many people can say their mum married them! My mum became a registrar when I was one and it had been my dream to have my mum do my wedding ever since then!”
Shirley and Jonny wanted a relaxed wedding with all the most important people in their lives there… including their two dogs. In fact they picked their venue, The Arcadia in Portrush Northern Ireland, specifically because they could have them there!
“We really just went with the flow when we were planning the wedding”, Shirley explained. “We picked things that worked with our venue and the surrounding area. Both our venue and photographer where chosen because of our love of dogs. We had to have Max, our nine year old boxer, and Millie, our one year old Chinese Crested there. They are a massive part of our family no way could we have got married while they had been put in kennels for the day!”
“Unfortunately our baby Max passed away recently. We are all devastated but we have the most beautiful memories of him on our wedding day. If anyone is unsure whether they should include their dogs in their wedding we would say definitely do it.”