Elli and Oli’s wedding was inspired by the letter B (for Bates, their surname) and with a colour palate of soft pinks and peach.
“We bought all the props secondhand, or used things we (and our friends) already had at home such lanterns, fairylights and birdcages”, said Elli. “We had all sorts of things starting with B, from the bridesmaids books to plastic bugs we painted green and put tiny hearts on (lovebugs!) My bridesmaids and one of their boyfriends even helped me decorate a 3 foot tall free-standing B with flowers, as well as folded 400 paper cranes! One of the other bridesmaids created our dog Isabelle’s outfit and she definitely was the cutest one there!”
The bridesmaids all wore pink dresses of their own choosing to match the theme and the whole venue was decked out with plenty of flowers and foliage. “I’m Italian and Oli is English so we also want a bit of a English/ Italian theme. We wanted our wedding to reflect us, so we picked all the things we like and threw them in the mix. Our florist helped with this and we had olive trees and wine baskets filled with herbs on the tables. The venue looked and smelt amazing!”
The wedding was held at East Horton Golf Club near Winchester. “One of the hardest parts of wedding planning was finding a venue that would allow dogs as we knew we had to have Isabelle there! We wasted so many hours researching venues when the first question we should have asked was if Isabelle would be able to come! In the end the cutest venue was just around the corner, and had the exact barn we wanted so we didn’t have to compromise.”
“Our ceremony was super nice. We wrote our own vows, Oli made everyone cry whilst I promised him to stop growling for food. It was all a bit emotional, with Einstein being read in both English and Italian. Our dog Isabelle walked down with the bridesmaids, and carried the rings. With nine girls getting ready together (also read: chaos!) we ended up being almost an hour late but it was all OK in the end!”
“Our biggest expenses were the photos and rings but we decided that they would be the things that would last after the day they were worth spending more on. We absolutely LOVE all our photos and Emily and Steve could have as well been our guests for how well they fitted in with all our friends. We saved money on transport by getting taxis instead of fancy wedding cars. My sister also kindly hand-delivered all the invites I had sent to Italy, meaning international postage was only paid for once. Making most of the decorations also helped and and we took our own Prosecco to the venue for the afternoon tea.”
“Our advice to other couples would be to not get too stressed, at the end of the day you’ll be married to the love of your life and if things don’t go according to plan just laugh about it, it’ll just make for a good story. One of our bridesmaids went missing for about a few hours but I’m not allowed to give any more details haha!”