Sarah and Ben met on MySpace in 2007 when they were just 15 and 16 years old. They had a long distance relationship, seeing each other every weekend, until they went to the same university and moved in together. “Since then we have adopted three cats, moved house four times, and spent over 11 years together”, they said.
With a £4000 budget and a desire to get married without anything too fancy, expensive or posh, they planned a perfectly ‘them’ cerebration for January this year. “We wanted the day to be very us”, said Sarah. “Nothing too posh or over the top – we just wanted everyone to be happy, eat good food, get drunk and have fun partying with us.”
“A lot of our friends commented on how before our wedding day they hadn’t enjoyed attending friend’s weddings because they were so structured and formal. I believe we managed to have a relaxed although organised wedding day which allowed everyone to be themselves and have fun.”
Sarah loves decorating her and Richard’s house for Christmas, so this drew the first inspiration for the couple’s November wedding day. “We wanted a family friendly, rustic yet glamorous, cosy and romantic winter wedding,” explained Sarah. “I love decorating the house for Christmas with rustic, old fashioned decorations and lots of winter foliage, and wanted to capture that coziness for our wedding. I also love all things vintage, especially 1950s and Rockabilly, and had to give a nod to the styles I love so much.”
However, one of the sweetest parts of their wedding has to be the fact that Sarah asked her Grandma to be one of her bridesmaids. Would you get a load of this adorableness! She had her as bridesmaid for a very special reason. “I don’t want to run on and bore you but when I was 18 months old my mother died, and my nanny gave up everything for me to live with her while my dad got himself back on track. Don’t worry there was a happy ending – he got re-married and I grew up with a mum that could not be more perfect! But I wanted to honour my nanny for her selflessness throughout my life in front of everyone we care about who attended our big day.”
With a £4000 budget, the couple got hands on and DIY-ed as much as they could. “I got a bit excited a long time before the wedding,” explained Sarah, “and this resulted in crafting as much for it as I could think of!” This included flower arrangements, buttonholes, personalised coat hangers and wedding party gifts, table plan, seating cards, signs and display… the list is endless!
James and Bex go to Glastonbury every single year, but as there was no festival in 2018, they decided they would get married on the same weekend and host their own! The day was held at The Pheasantry Brewery, near their home in Nottinghamshire. As well as making their day feel perfect for them, their family and in particular their children were a really important part of the day. Between them they have five kids, two each from previous relationships and the youngest, Frank, together. They even painted Frank’s buggy with the pyramid stage and portraits of Michael Eavis and Dave Grohl on it!
“Our wedding was a Midsummer Night’s Dream meets Glastonbury festival meets English village fete meets The Wicker Man!” said the bride. “As a family we usually go to Glastonbury Festival, its where James proposed in fact, and on hearing 2018 would be a fallow year and there would be no festival we decided to have our own, that way we get to celebrate our anniversaries there!”
The druid handfasting ceremony was a really special moment (they did the legal ceremony a few days prior). Instead of an aisle, their guests were gathered in a circle around them, their children were also really involved.
Being a festival wedding, the entertainment was obviously a big consideration… Their children are all quite musical so they held an open mic session at the reception where anyone could stand up and perform! All the kids sang, as did Bex and her bridesmaids.