Rachel and Ally won their wedding photography though a contest hosted on this very wedding blog, so when Rachel excitedly emailed me with the resulting gorgeous photos, I couldn’t wait to post them! The wedding was held in Ally’s parent’s back garden in Surrey.
“When we first got engaged and I started to look at possible venues I got so downhearted that I abandoned the search for 18 months”, began the bride. “Every couple wants a wedding that represents them, and we were no different, but I felt everywhere I looked we either couldn’t afford or wouldn’t let us choose the things that were important to us. They all seemed to insist that you use their recommended suppliers. We are both laid back and wanted something that wouldn’t be stressful to organise.”
“Rather than start at what we wanted, we started at what we didn’t want and built from there. We didn’t want formality or to subscribe to tradition. I didn’t want a wedding dress and Ally didn’t want a morning suit. We wanted it to feel very natural and relaxed so cut out many of the usual parts that make up a wedding. I didn’t want to be a princess; the only thing I wanted to be on our wedding day was Mrs Jowett.”
Sam and Hattie were married at the bride’s parents home, in a tipi set up in their extensive garden. But this wasn’t the usual laid back backyard affair. The wedding was strictly black tie and super duper glamorous. Their guests were invited to wear their most decadent outfits, the bride wore a stunning handmade black couture gown, and her bridesmaid’s were in incredibly sparkly custom made dresses.
“I work in fashion and film and Sam works in advertising so we have a pretty eclectic and wonderful set of friends and family”, the bride began. “We wanted to make the most of this and knew that our lot would never pass up the opportunity to go all out glam. We made it clear from the beginning that this was not a ‘weddingy’ wedding, I even banned hats. We requested sparkly dresses for the ladies and black tie for the men. I wanted it to be a little surreal, like stumbling upon an elegant city party in the middle of the countryside. As it was the longest day of the year the sun was setting later, which we took advantage of by having an evening ceremony, this way nature complimented the fashion and the fashion complimented event.”
Summer brides take note! You are going to looooove Rachel and David’s amazing wedding which took place this May. They went down the DIY route for nearly everything and added personal touches wherever they could.
“Taking on a lot of DIY for your wedding can seem daunting and time consuming”, explained Rachel. “It also might end up stressing you out a little bit, but you should DEFINITELY try and get some bits in there that you have done yourself. You will feel so proud when you see everything set up with all those personal touches you spent time on, and people DO notice. We had so many compliments on some of the little touches we put in on the day with our table numbers, cards and wishing tree.”
“We started off our planning by both knowing very specifically what we wanted with individual aspects”, she continued. “For example, I knew I wanted Sassy to photograph our day, and I knew I wanted to design my own dress. For David the most important thing was giving everyone a good meal.”
Natalie and Katie were married at the Priory Cottages in North Yorkshire. They chose it as they wanted a place that they could be for the whole weekend and that all their family and close friends could stay there too. The wedding was a real team effort, with lots of people pitching in to make it perfect. One of Natalie’s friends, Hayley Neil of Glory Days Vintage, made both dresses, another friend did the flowers, another the cake, and they hand crafted the stationery themselves.
“We wanted a very casual wedding with an outdoorsy feel where everybody could feel very relaxed”, wrote Natalie, “In fact it was so relaxed that Katie’s dad, Kev, had his shorts on within an hour of the ceremony! The casual theme was reflected in everything from the style of the meal to the photography and the camping guests!”
Abbie and Chris were married at The Stables in Brinkburn Briory, a unique venue that really helped to set the tone of their day. “I think the venue for us was probably one of the most unique parts of our wedding”, Abbie told me. “There hadn’t been many weddings before ours there and the derelict building next to the priory has featured on the TV show ‘Most Haunted’. It was a beautiful place for pictures.”
The couple added personal and handmade touches throughout the wedding, my favourite item of course being the Lego rainbow unicorn cake topper! Surprisingly it was actually the groom that wanted this! “Before we started organising the wedding, we had never really thought about what we wanted, only what we didn’t want!” the bride continued. “However Chris did mention a few times that he would like a unicorn. This was said even before we got engaged and most of our friends and family knew about his request. It would have been sad not to allow him what he wanted! So he built his own Lego unicorn cake topper including a silver glittery horn. It was a huge talking point of the day!”
Antonia and Harvey had a three day wedding at Roskilly’s Ice Cream Farm in Cornwall. Their wedding was a true labour of love, with the couple and their friends and family working hard to create the wedding of their dreams. The weekend happened to be the hottest of the year which couldn’t have been more perfect for their outdoor, ice cream farm celebration!
“Ultimately we wanted something that we would enjoy going to and to have a festival style, laid-back feel to the whole party”, began the groom. “Being the most expensive party of our lives, we didn’t want it to be over in a day so we had three days!”
“The retro caravans made for a great backdrop to the festival theme and allowed us to create our weekend jamboree. We dragged our friends to the far end of the country, and in return gave them a church overlooking a Cornish fishing village, magnificent tipis and hippy buses. We had smoke bombs instead of confetti, original 1950s Monte Carlo pin-up glamour playing cards as place cards and table runners made from old public WC roller-towels. Our bunting was Mexican Day of the Dead bunting, we had a piñata ‘first dance’ and lucked out on finding an incredible caterer, celebrating the best of Cornish food. Antonia’s Fur Coat No Knickers dress was a theme unto itself – it was supremely glamorous, laden with historical allure. Yes it was vintage, yes it was rural, but the day sparkled with lavishness.”