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!”
Tams and Richie were married in County Wicklow, Ireland, in March. Their day was both glamorous and laid back, with a fun-filled festival theme. “We had been bashing our heads against a wall trying to think of a ‘theme’ for ages, and we landed with Old Hollywood Glamour”, began Tams. “I was doing all of the invitations, props, design, look and feel myself, and I began to get really uncomfortable with the whole Hollywood theme and when people started referencing The Great Gatsby, it really didn’t settle well. It’s a beautiful, stylised theme and I envy anyone who can pull it off, but it just wasn’t us.”
“So Richie started to tease it out; what are we looking for on our big day? The answer was simple: Fun! Fun! Fun! We just wanted lots of colour and fun, a vibrant and energetic party where people can come and feel like themselves, not tied to any formalities or too much structure. Kick your shoes off and dance! I think, in the end, we actually managed to combine the two pretty well.”
Kat and Matt wanted anything but a traditional wedding. They started the day by having their ceremony at Old Wardour Castle in Salisbury. “The inspiration for the wedding was everything we enjoy: computer games, Game of Thrones, Lord of the Rings, swords, horses, cats, dragons and castles!”, said the bride. “We love looking around castles and historical sites, so finding a ruined castle licensed for weddings was amazingly perfect!”
“The inspiration evolved throughout planning and it got more adventurous as we went on. The clincher was Matt asking if I would arrive on horseback, something which I had dreamed of but initially dismissed as way too risky and over the top. Our friend Heather spent at least a day bathing her lovely horse Millie and let her be my horsey bridesmaid. I think it was the icing on a rather eccentric cake…. Oh and the swords! I had ‘Longclaw’ Jon Snow’s sword from Game of Thrones and Matt had ‘Narsil’ from Lord of the Rings!”
High school sweethearts Victoria and Ian were married in May. Their wedding was loosely based on their love of Glastonbury festival with references including their invites and the decorations.
“We wanted the wedding to be fun and informal”, said Victoria, “and we really wanted to have the ceremony outside. We fell in love with a secret garden at Burton Manor but it wasn’t licenced for ceremonies. So we decided to sign the register a day earlier and have a non-legal ceremony on the day that we organised ourselves. It was a massive gamble on the weather, but we lucked out and had lovely sun throughout. My uncle Tony played guitar for the guests as they arrived and we supplied camping chairs for the ‘more mature’ festival goers, while other guests remained standing for the whole ceremony.”
“The only thing I knew about flowers is that I wanted them bright and colourful”, she continued. “I let our florist use their imagination to create an amazing surprise for us on the morning of the wedding. The flowers were one of the highlights of the day and took the least amount of effort and stress.”
“One of our favourite things was our rings. We couldn’t find rings any that we liked so we decided to do a wedding ring workshop to make our own! We did everything for them including coming up with the ideas and melting down Ian’s granddad’s ring to use. They are now even more personal and special because we made them ourselves.”
Nel and Matt were married in a restored 600 year old gate house at the edge of an ancient oak forest. The wedding was held on the eve of summer solstice. “We just wanted a relaxed wedding where everyone could enjoy the surroundings and the significance of where we were”, said the bride. “Luckily the weather was on our side! As having all of our friends and family in one place is a once in a lifetime event, we didn’t like the idea of taking off to a hotel whilst everyone else was still enjoying the night, so we camped on site with the rest of our friends in a bell tent that our bridesmaids had decorated beautifully.”
The bride had her unusual yet beautiful raw silk wedding dress made especially for her. “I know most women dream of that appointment at a bridal boutique to find the dress but to be honest the idea of all that fuss made me feel sick. I’m quite proud to say that I didn’t even try one single dress on! I sent Lucia from Larimeloom my measurements and she made me the most beautiful raw silk dress. I didn’t want to have a veil with my dried flower crown so I impulse bought the lace cape online and it matched my dress perfectly!”
I have to admit that I’ve never actually watched an episode of Game of Thrones myself, but I knew as soon as I saw Laura and Paul’s June wedding that I had to share it! They were married at Meols Hall in Churchtown.
“The inspiration for the wedding was a mix of a number of concepts”, explained Laura. “I would describe my personal style as ‘contemporary Nordic’ so I love furs, antlers, skulls, slate and wood. I think that one of the main things that made our wedding unique was ‘Dave’ our deer head. Paul and I have a number of animal skulls in our house but Dave is one of our favourites so the wedding wouldn’t have been the same without him!”