Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding Day

Wedding stylist Not Your Average I Do was called in to transform a working barn venue into the perfect summertime wedding location for Tom and Caroline – here’s how they did it…

Barn wedding reception Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding Day

Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding Day

Farm gate Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: D&J Photography.

Tom and Caroline chose a beautiful working farm in the heart of Lymington, New Forest, as the backdrop for their big day.

The Set Up

Farm barn garden Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayA blank canvas… Credit: D&J Photography

Tom and Caro asked the Not Your Average I Do[1] (NYA) team to work their magic and completely transform the sheep pen farmyard from its usual working order into a highly stylish backdrop for their day.

Barn wedding set-up Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayThe NYA team begin their set-up. Credit: D&J Photography

barn wedding drapes set-up Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding Day

There are always areas in a working barn that, rather than requiring beautiful decorations, just simply need to be covered up to ensure perfect wedding photographs! NYA opted for bespoke draped wall towards the back of the barn to hide those unsightly spots.

Barn wedding drapes Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayPreparing the draping. Credit: D&J Wedding Photography

When relying on an outside summer lawn to host your guests there are several things you want to think about to ensure the guests enjoy your day as much as you do: shade, seating, entertainment, lighting and warmth. Tom and Caroline ticked all these boxes, and then some!

Shade

Farm lawn wedding guests Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayThe farm lawn is transformed! Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Come rain or shine, cover from the elements is essential. Tom and Caroline opted for a stretch tent marquee as well as NYA’s barrel poseur tables with parasols to keep the guests (and their drinks) cool!

Seating

Farm lawn wedding guests Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayGuests enjoyed the chill-out area on the lawn. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

With over 100 guests, Tom and Caroline wanted to ensure that there would be adequate (and comfortable) seating for everyone. Dotting NYA’s deck chairs and bean bags about the grounds gave a chilled-out summer vibe. They added hay bales covered with blankets and cushions for added comfort.

Farm barn seating hay bales Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayStable door with hay bales. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Entertainment

Barn wedding garden games Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayThe traditional wooden garden games were loved by all. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

The addition of NYA’s garden games brought fun for all ages!

Garden jenga Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography Giant connect four Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Using NYA’s ‘not so average’ moon arch and a bespoke polaroid photo frame created a unique backdrop to act as the couple’s photobooth.

Floral hoop photobooth Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayMoon arch photo booth. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography Wedding photobooth guests Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Lighting

Barn fairy lights Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DaySetting up the lighting in the barn. Credit: D&J Photography

For the wedding breakfast inside the barn, the happy couple chose a striking hanging table centre design, using NYA staggered festoon lighting covered in foliage and hanging glass baubles filled with candles and flowers.

Barn wedding reception tables Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography Barn wedding reception details Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

NYA installed a stunning 30m fairy light wall which acted as an amazing backdrop for the wedding breakfast and those all-important wedding speeches.

Father of the bride speech Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayStaggered festoon lighting and glass baubles. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography Barn wedding bride Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayFairy-light backdrop. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography barn wedding reception guests Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayCredit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Warmth

Evening wedding guests fire pit Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayThe bride and her friends enjoying the warmth of the firepit. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Extra blankets are a great way to keep you and your guests warm as the evening sun drops – patio heaters are a great addition too, as well as firepits for mood lighting and toasting marshmallows!

Finishing Touches

Wooden light-up table plan Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayBespoke light-up table plan. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

It’s the finishing touches that turn a blank canvas into a beautiful wedding venue. Tom and Caroline asked NYA to create a bespoke personalised light-up table plan. The couple’s floral hoops beautifully highlighted the brick wall of the barn.

Floral wedding hoops Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayFloral hoops. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

As dusk turned to evening, the barrel festoon lighting by NYA turned the yard into a functional and romantic space to snuggle by the fire, really giving it that WOW factor. What a perfect way to end a perfect day!

Evening wedding reception Styling a Barn Venue for Your Wedding DayBarrel festoon lighting. Credit: Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography

Contact book:
Set-up photography – D&J Wedding Photography
On-the-day photography – Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography
Styling, lighting, props and photobooth – Not Your Average I Do
Florist – Katherine Bly Flowers
Venue – Warborne Farm[2][3][4][5][6]

notyouraverageido.com[7]

PROMOTIONAL MATERIAL

Read More:

References

  1. ^ Not Your Average I Do (notyouraverageido.com)
  2. ^ D&J Wedding Photography (www.dandjphotography.co.uk)
  3. ^ Tom and Lizzie Redman Photography (tomandlizzieredman.com)
  4. ^ Not Your Average I Do (notyouraverageido.com)
  5. ^ Katherine Bly Flowers (katherinebly.com)
  6. ^ Warborne Farm (www.warbornefarm.co.uk)
  7. ^ notyouraverageido.com (notyouraverageido.com)

Real weddings: A unique celebration at Chiswick House

Chiswick House weddingPhotography: Anushé Low

With statement floral décor and a bridal outfit change, Farhana and Sebastian made their big-day celebrations entirely their own at Chiswick house…

Japanese cherry blossom petals were falling to the ground when Sebastian got down on one knee to propose. The couple had travelled to Tokyo and Farhana – a flower fanatic – was particularly excited about the blossom season for which the city is famous. 

“It was magical,” she says. “Seb managed to find a secluded spot. When I turned around he was holding out a ring, but I was too busy chatting away to notice. He had to interrupt my monologue to propose!”

Real wedding Photography: Anushé Low

Farhana opted for a red lehenga from Bangladesh for the couple’s ceremony

Farhana opted for a red lehenga from Bangladesh for the couple’s ceremony in West London, adorned with exquisite patterns and beading. She accessorised with Monica Vinader diamond hoop earrings and a chunky gold necklace from Dainty Co, worn with Gianvito Rossi sandals. “I wanted to keep my accessories simple but invest in things that I could wear again,” she says. 

Unsure whether to do her own make-up[1] or hire a professional, Farhana eventually decided to call in an expert. “In the end I went for an artist who had done my friend’s bridal make-up. She mainly used MAC products – she was really great and took all the stress out of getting ready.”

Chiswick House weddingPhotography: Anushé Low

“I was so nervous walking down the aisle with my father, but as soon as I saw Seb I just felt a sense of calm”

The couple tied the knot at Chiswick House in a civil ceremony, with three bridesmaids and two flowergirls accompanying Farhana down the aisle. Like the bride, they also wore dresses made from Bangladeshi materials.

“I was so nervous walking down the aisle with my father, but as soon as I saw Seb I just felt a sense of calm. He looked so handsome and I felt like the luckiest woman in the world.”

The bride’s friend Laura gave a reading of I Carry Your Heart With Me by E.E. Cummings during the ceremony, which Farhana says moved her to tears. “I knew before I met Seb that if I married I would have this reading,” she says. “I love this poem so much. I cried!” [2]

This was then followed with a reading by Seb’s sister Olivia from Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney, which the couple chose because it “mirrored so much” of what they say to each other.

Floral crownPhotography: Anushé Low

The floral arrangements were a big deal for Seb and Farhana, especially as the bride and her mother-in-law are both keen gardeners

But the showstopper of the big day was undoubtedly the flowers[3]. Arranged by florist All For Love London, the arrangements were a big deal for Seb and Farhana, especially as the bride and her mother-in-law are both keen gardeners. “It was really important that our wedding be as green as possible!” Farhana said. “If people said anything about our wedding it was how amazing the flowers were.

“My bouquet was beautiful – a perfect, relaxed, garden-style bridal posy in white and green using roses, peonies and dahlias and tied with a double satin ivory ribbon. We also had three bridesmaid bouquets – similar in style but smaller than mine – and our flowergirls had crowns featuring ivy, ferns, cream spray roses and lemon balm. They looked so cute!” The couple later donated all their wedding flowers to Great Ormond Street Hospital.

READ MORE: Seven keys areas of your venue to feature flowers[4]

After the ceremony, the bride changed into a stunning white dress from ASOS. “The dress had been tailored to fit perfectly. I remember feeling so excited when I tried it on,” she says. White, however, was a risky move considering the couple had arranged for a wedding breakfast banquet that included curries. “Thankfully I managed not to spill anything on myself!” laughs Farhana. 

The food was served family-style so guests could easily share dishes around. It also created a more relaxing atmosphere, as everyone on the tables could get to know each other easily. A friend from Sugarlily Cake Boutique made the wedding cake – three tiers of chocolate and Victoria sponge, decorated with handmade flowers.

Sweetie barPhotography: Anushé Low

“Making a speech was the best thing I did. I think it’s important that women have a voice on their wedding day!”

As for the first dance, “we chose You Send Me by Sam Cooke,” the bride says. “It was played at Seb’s aunt’s 70th birthday party and we just knew this was the song.” The couple also booked a band – Motown Sensation – as their entertainment, which proved to be a massive hit. “They were absolutely amazing and lots of friends have requested their details since.”

Farhana also decided to make a speech on the day. “I think it’s important that women have a voice on their wedding day!” she said. “It was the best thing I did, even though I hadn’t prepared for it.” 

When the wedding was over, the newlyweds jetted off to Tanzania for 12 days and embarked on a safari. They then travelled to Zanzibar to stay in the Zawadi Hotel, and they both reveal it was the best holiday they’ve ever had. 

CEREMONY VENUE Chiswick House & Gardens
PHOTOGRAPHY Anushé Low
DRESS ASOS
ACCESSORIES Monica VinaderDainty CoGianvito Rossi
GROOM Hugo BossLouis Vuitton;
FLOWERS All For Love London
CAKE Sugarlily Cake Boutique
DECOR 
Lighting With Intent
ENTERTAINMENT Motown Sensation 
HONEYMOON Scott Dunn[5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17]


Want more wedding information and inspiration? Just hit ‘Like’ on our Wedding Ideas Facebook page[18], and ‘Follow’ on our @wimagazine Twitter account[19] to join in the conversation.

References

  1. ^ do her own make-up (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  2. ^ I love this poem so much (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  3. ^ the flowers (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  4. ^ READ MORE: Seven keys areas of your venue to feature flowers (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  5. ^ Chiswick House & Gardens (chiswickhouseandgardens.org.uk)
  6. ^ Anushé Low (anushe.com)
  7. ^ ASOS (www.asos.com)
  8. ^ Monica Vinader (www.monicavinader.com)
  9. ^ Dainty Co (www.daintyco.com)
  10. ^ Gianvito Rossi (www.gianvitorossi.com)
  11. ^ Hugo Boss (www.hugoboss.com)
  12. ^ Louis Vuitton (www.louisvuitton.com)
  13. ^ All For Love London (www.allforlovelondon.com)
  14. ^ Sugarlily Cake Boutique (www.facebook.com)
  15. ^ Lighting With Intent (www.lighting-with-intent.com)
  16. ^  Motown Sensation  (www.bandsforhire.net)
  17. ^ Scott Dunn (www.scottdunn.com)
  18. ^ Wedding Ideas Facebook page (www.facebook.com)
  19. ^ @wimagazine Twitter account (twitter.com)

Real weddings: A stylish warehouse city wedding

Credit: May Tree Photography

Beth and Gerald opted for an atmospheric warehouse wedding in the heart of Sheffield

Paris[1] was the backdrop to this couple’s proposal, and it came as something of a surprise to the bride. “Gez isn’t known for his romantic gestures, but when he proposed it was perfect. He asked me to marry him in a park close to the Eiffel Tower on Bastille Day. It started to rain but we danced away to the music being played and then warmed up with hot chocolates back at the hotel,” Beth recalls.

Credit: May Tree Photography

“When it came to the dress, I was quite relaxed but I had no idea what I wanted to start with.”

Like many brides, Beth was thrown in at the deep end when it came to wedding dress shopping. “I was quite relaxed but I had no idea what I wanted to start with. Karen at The White Room was so patient and helped me choose designs to try on. When I put on my Sassi Holford dress, I felt so glamorous! I knew I wanted a showstopper.” The design featured Italian lace sleeves, an ivory satin waistband and a pretty crepe skirt. 

“I loved the back of the dress, so initially I didn’t want to wear a veil that would cover it up. But everything changed when I tried on a veil at my first fitting – I just fell in love! In the end I chose a full-length veil and my grandma kindly gifted me some pearl earrings to wear on the day, too.”

READ MORE: 25 new season bridal veils [2]

The groom looked dapper in a navy blue, three-piece Ted Baker suit. “He looked amazing,” Beth recalls. “I felt so content seeing him on the day. He’d have been happy to keep things small and marry at a registry office, but I was so proud that he stood up in front of everyone at our wedding for me.”

The bride asked her good friend Adele, who also happens to be her new husband’s brother’s partner, to be her bridesmaid. “She is a huge part of our lives and the most organised woman I know. Adele wore a blush-coloured dress from Coast and my flowergirls wore dresses from Next.” Tina from The Style Bar in Sheffield stepped in to take care of the bride’s make-up, while her usual go-to hairdresser from Conrad Blandford styled her up-do. [3]

Credit: May Tree Photography

“Gez surprised me by saying he’d like to write his own vows, so we both did.”

The couple tied the knot in a Unitarian ceremony at Fulwood Old Chapel. “The minister allowed us to make the ceremony completely unique to us, taking parts out and adding new bits in. My sisters-in-law gave readings from Bob Marley’s He’s Not Perfect and Johnny Cash’s I Love You Because. When we discussed the service with the minister, Gez surprised me by saying he’d like to write his own vows[4], so we both did. I’m so pleased we did it because it made our ceremony even more personal.”

In tune with their relaxed wedding, Beth and Gez opted for tables laden with dishes that formed a menu fit for a feast, rather than set courses. “It felt like all 50 of us were sitting around a family table sharing a meal and everyone exclaimed at how brilliant the food was. Three desserts to finish was a highlight,” Beth laughs.

“I wanted a traditional wedding while Gez preferred something more casual and intimate. Getting married at Fulwood Old Chapel fit the bill for a romantic setting to start with. Then, after the ceremony, we jumped into a VW Camper and drove to The Chimney House, a restored factory space in the city, for our reception.

Credit: May Tree Photography

“We did very little to decorate The Chimney House except to add lots of flowers”

“We did very little to decorate The Chimney House – it’s filled with quirky, mid-century furniture, mural walls and exposed brickwork. We did add lots of flowers[5] though – a wreath, concrete planters filled with blooms on the long tables and single stems dotted around.” The florist worked to a ‘midsummer’s night’ theme, including ranunculus, amnesia roses, lisianthus, scabiosa seed heads and poppy seeds in the bouquet.

Oh Sugar! By Rachel Edwards created the couple’s semi-naked cake, fulfilling the groom’s wish to avoid fondant icing. “My mum and dad helped choose the flavours, which were chocolate ganache, lemon and Victoria sandwich, and a friend baked cupcakes for our younger guests, too.”

Credit: May Tree Photography

“We ended up having two first dances”

Enhancing the laidback vibe, an acoustic guitarist played after dinner, setting the tone for guests to dance the night away. “We ended up having two first dances,” the newlyweds reveal. “We had planned to dance to a recorded version of Etta James’ At Last, which we did, and then the guitarist played Oasis’ Wonderwall, so that became our second.”

Having planned their wedding in just four months, Beth and Gez left honeymoon hunting until after the big day. “Instead, we jetted off to Spain with Gez’s brother and Adele for a few days’ holiday post-wedding. We had a brilliant time.

“Just go with the flow on the day and you’ll have the most fun. I would do nothing differently; our wedding was our perfect day despite the fact I forgot my bouquet (the chauffeur kindly collected it for me after the ceremony!), which actually became a positive –  I had some lovely photos that showed my dress off,” recalls the bride. 

Their wedding contacts…

CEREMONY VENUE Fulwood Old Chapel
RECEPTION VENUE The Chimney House
PHOTOGRAPHY May Tree Photography
DRESS Sassi Holford at The White Room Bridal Boutique
BRIDESMAIDS’ DRESSES Coast; Next 
GROOM Ted Baker at John Lewis
HAIR Conrad Blandford     
MAKE-UP The Style Bar     
STATIONERY The Vow
FLOWERS Swallows & Damsons
CAKE Oh Sugar! By Rachel Edwards [6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17]


Want more wedding information and inspiration? Just hit ‘Like’ on our Wedding Ideas Facebook page[18], and ‘Follow’ on our @wimagazine Twitter account[19] to join in the conversation.

References

  1. ^ Paris (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  2. ^ READ MORE: 25 new season bridal veils  (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  3. ^ flowergirls (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  4. ^ write his own vows (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  5. ^ flowers (www.weddingideasmag.com)
  6. ^ Fulwood Old Chapel (fulwood-old-chapel.org.uk)
  7. ^ The Chimney House (thechimneyhouse.com)
  8. ^ May Tree Photography (www.maytreephotography.co.uk)
  9. ^ Sassi Holford at The White Room Bridal Boutique (www.whiteroombridal.co.uk)
  10. ^ Coast;  (www.coast-stores.com)
  11. ^ Next  (www.next.co.uk)
  12. ^ Ted Baker at John Lewis (www.johnlewis.com)
  13. ^ Conrad Blandford      (www.conradblandfordhairdressing.com)
  14. ^ The Style Bar      (thestylebar.co.uk)
  15. ^ The Vow (www.thevowweddings.com)
  16. ^ Swallows & Damsons (www.swallowsanddamsons.com)
  17. ^ Oh Sugar! By Rachel Edwards  (www.ohsugarsheffield.co.uk)
  18. ^ Wedding Ideas Facebook page (www.facebook.com)
  19. ^ @wimagazine Twitter account (twitter.com)

Bridal make-up tips from 11 real brides

With so many products and options available, how do you know what bridal make-up will look best on you? We turn to 11 real brides for their top tips…[1]

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helplisapaynephotography.co.uk

Amy from issue 168

“Have your make-up trial fairly close to your wedding so the light is similar to how it will be on your wedding day – you’ll get a good idea of how it will look on your skin. Also discuss with your make-up artist which colours will complement your skin tone and – most of all – make sure you still look like you on the day. You don’t want to be wearing heavy make-up on your special day if normally you wear minimal make-up as it may look too much on you.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpterivphotography.co.uk

Stacey from issue 167

“Do what you feel is right for you. I wanted to be natural for the day but I love a vibrant lipstick so I took some make-up to jazz myself up for the evening party.”

If you want a natural style too, don’t miss these three top tips for naturally glowing bridal beauty.[2]

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpmattandlenaphotography.com

Leanne from issue 167

“My hair and make-up was organised through our wedding planners” – a fantastic option if you’re getting married abroad[3]. Your planners will have contacts with quality local suppliers, taking away the stress of trying to choose yourself when distance means a trial may not be an option.

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helphelloromance.co.uk

Sophie from issue 166

“I would really recommend wearing false eyelashes on the day, as they really make your eyes stand out in photographs and make you feel special on the day. These don’t need to be the semi-permanent eyelash extensions you hear about (I initially had my heart set on these but found out I was allergic to the glue!). Companies such as Eyelure[4] do a fantastic and affordable range, including a set of individual ones, which I ended up using, and I would recommend to other brides to research different types of false eyelashes to find what works for them.

I would also say don’t be afraid to ask the make-up artist to use your own products (rather than theirs) on you – I felt so much more comfortable for doing so.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helppatdyphotography.com

Sarah from issue 165

“My make-up tip is actually not about make up but about the skin itself. Brides-to-be should take care of their skin long before the wedding because a great skin radiates natural beauty. Always hydrate yourself with two to three litres of water a day and do not ever go to bed with make-up on.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpcassandralane.co.uk

Jess from issue 165

“I couldn’t have done without my MAC prime focus prep and prime[5] transparent finishing powder. It was great for holding my make-up in place and also I used it throughout the day to keep the shine off and keep my make-up looking fresh.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpcassandralane.co.uk

Emily from issue 164

“If you are going to do your own make-up, make sure you treat yourself to some brand new make-up, something different to what you usually wear so it feels special. I bought a new shade of lipstick for the occasion and now whenever I wear it I think of my wedding day.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpandrewjrsquires.com

Hatti from issue 164

“Donna, my make-up artist, asked me to share my Pinterest board with her so she could get an idea of what I wanted which I think really helped me communicate my ideas. I would also say wear a bit more make-up than you usually do as you would be surprised how different it looks in photos. I also worked within my natural make-up style – I often wear winged black eyeliner, and peach/nude lips which is important so you look like yourself on the day.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpsummerlilystudio.com

Ella from issue 163

“It always pays to hire a make-up artist! They use the best, highest quality products and know how to make you your most beautiful and how to make sure it lasts! Plus you can relax on the day and feel pampered. For anyone who doesn’t want a make-up artist, I would 100% recommend buying a good setting spray! I used Urban Decay ‘All Nighter’ setting spray[6] and my make-up was flawless the whole day and night.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpdwlp.com

Brittany from issue 163

“Have a trial run with your make-up artist. I did when I first picked my make-up artist and then had another one a couple months prior to the wedding, and used it for my bridal portrait session. It was nice to recap and make sure everyone was on the same page to be prepared for the big day.”

With so many products, DIY and professional options and styles available, how do you know what bridal makeup will look best on you? These tips will helpfrancescasecolonovophotography.com

Angeline from issue 162

“Make sure to get your bridesmaids to carry a spare bottle of foundation and lipgloss so that you can touch up after any tears!”
Now you’ve got your beauty tips sorted, make sure your hair has heads turning too, and for all the right reasons. Here are 17 of our favourite bridal hair styles[7] (covering every length and accessory!) to get you inspired.


What are your top make-up tips? Hit ‘like’ on our Wedding Ideas Facebook page[8], and ‘follow’ on our @wimagazine Twitter account[9] to join in the conversation.


This Lake Wedding Is Fit For A Fairytale

Harriet & Simon

A vintage Cambridgeshire lake wedding perched on the water’s edge

PHOTOGRAPHY BY Dan Sakal,
D&A Photography, da-photo.co.uk[1]

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

Proposals don’t usually conjure up images of a large, heavy box. That’s why exactly that became the perfect disguise for this groom’s proposal plans. “It was Christmas day and I had one present under the tree. After picking it up, I doubted it would be a ring. Then Simon asked me to stand up before getting down on bended knee and asking me to be his wife,” beams Harriet.

“I felt ladylike and grownup when I first tried on my La Sposa wedding dress.”

“Burr Bridal in Cambridge was the first shop I visited. The lady there asked me whether I needed to see a few more options before making my mind up, but I knew there was no need. It was perfect and just what I had pictured.”

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

Harriet teamed her floor-length, fishtail lace dress with Swarovski jewellery. A floral headpiece, made by her florist, and a veil and shoes, also from Burr Bridal, completed her look. Amy Claire Makeup complemented her bridal look with MAC lip products, and Stylishly Chic by Bonnie styled her hair beautifully.

“Simon looked extremely handsome when I first saw him, I was so proud of him! He wore a navy blue, three-piece morning suit, which we sourced from Hugh Harris in Woking.”

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

Harriet had two adult and two younger bridesmaids join her for the day. Her maid of honour Claire and bridesmaid Leonie wore floor-length, mint satin dresses with silver embellishment at the waist from Debenhams. “I’ve known Leonie’s two daughters since birth so I had to include them too. They wore knee-length pink and lace Monsoon dresses with pretty bows at the back as my little bridesmaids. Wedding Ideas gave me inspiration for different bridesmaid dresses and suppliers to try.”

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

The couple’s venue of choice, Sheene Mill, offers a beautiful pagoda outside by the lake, so it was an easy choice to hold their ceremony there.

“I walked down the aisle with my father to Celine Dion’s ‘The First Time I Ever Saw Your Face’.

My favourite moment has to be when we were pronounced as husband and wife and got to share our first married kiss, though, and then walking back up the aisle, seeing the smiling faces of our family and friends. I was too nervous to look up when I first walked down in case I welled up, but when I look back I wish I had done.”

“Look up as you walk down the aisle and take it all in – your groom, your guests, everything!”

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

To get their vintage wedding theme off to a vibrant start, Harriet and Simon chose a vintage gardens game company, Tilly’s Garden Party Hire, to set up fair games and The Candy Dream for the sweet carts outside.

“We decorated with tree trunks[2], hessian[3] and twine. We also designed our own invitations to include a swan – a nod to the feathered resident of Sheene Mill’s lake. Being Mr and Mrs Green, we named each table after a leafy hue, adding white lace and mint organza chair ties[4] to each seat.”

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

A dome-shaped bouquet formed of roses, carnations, gypsophila, eucalyptus and thlaspi was perfect for Harriet.

Her older attendants carried similar, smaller versions and the girls had posies of gyposphila. “Our florist Catherine, from Elworthy Flowers, also decorated the pagoda with blooms, working with artificial varieties to reduce the cost.”

Biscotti di Debora created the couple’s show-stopping three-tier Eton mess cake, which featured fresh cream and berries encased in a meringue exterior.

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

Once guests returned indoors from the garden party, the fun showed no signs of stopping thanks to a photobooth and guest book from Gigglebooth and five-piece band, Swagger Funk. “They played our first dance – Ed Sheeran’s ‘Thinking Out Loud’ – before moving into ‘Mr Brightside’ by The Killers, which is the first song we ever danced to together on the first night that we met.”

Immediately after tying the knot, Harriet and Simon minimooned in Devon and Cornwall. “It was really romantic at our Cornish cottage, with a hot tub, open fire and lovely beaches and scenery. Our honeymoon is booked for later this year, with three nights in Dubai followed by 11 in Bali, all booked through Kuoni and contributed to by our kind guests.”

Be inspired for your own outdoor ceremony or lake wedding by Harriet and Simon's fairytale wedding, complete with floral arches and stunning photographs...

“Our best decision during the planning was to book Dan from D&A Photography!”

“He was incredible, he captured so much emotion and now we have his perfect photographs to remember our day by forever. It’s worth telling your photographer who and what you want photographed before the day. They will likely ask on the day if you haven’t, but you’ll be too preoccupied and excited to think of everything at the time.

“Asking guests for vouchers towards your honeymoon adventures is a much more personal way of asking for monetary gifts.”

“This way it won’t feel impersonal and guests will know that their gifts are meaningful and special. Plus it’ll save you a lot of money on your honeymoon!”

SUPPLIERS

VENUE Sheene Mill, Cambridgeshire
DRESS La Sposa, Burr Bridal, Cambridge
BRIDESMAID DRESSES Debenhams and Monsoon
GROOM Hugh Harris, Woking
ACCESSORIES Swarovski and Burr Bridal, Cambridge
HAIR Stylishly Chic by Bonnie
MAKEUP Amy Claire Makeup
FLOWERS Elworthy Flowers
CAKE Biscotti di Debora
DÉCOR Sweetpea and Me
ENTERTAINMENT Tilly’s Garden Party Hire, The Candy Dream,
Gigglebooth, Swagger Funk
HONEYMOON Kuoni

References

  1. ^ da-photo.co.uk (da-photo.co.uk)
  2. ^ tree trunks (weddingideasmag.com)
  3. ^ hessian (weddingideasmag.com)
  4. ^ organza chair ties (weddingideasmag.com)

Fall For This Fairytale Florence Wedding In A Castle

Leanne & William

Fall in love with this fairytale Florence wedding, held in an Italian castle!

PHOTOGRAPHY BY Lauren Michelle Weddings,
laurenmichelle.com.au[1]

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You’d be forgiven for imagining that Leanne and William’s engagement was lifted from the pages of a love story.

“It was an autumn night in October. William had surprised me with a new outfit, dinner date and tickets to see my favourite band. After returning home from dinner, I went up to get ready for bed while William made a cup of tea… or so I thought. He was actually filling the living room with candles, lilies and roses. He’d compiled a memory book from the day we first met. After leafing through and with tears in my eyes, I turned to see him on one knee with a ring in his hand!”

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Working as a commercial model and wedding stylist, Leanne had modelled many bridal collections for photo shoots and catwalk shows already.

“I knew from experience that what I liked on the hanger didn’t always look great on, so choosing my wedding dress was tricky.”

“Nonetheless, the lovely staff at Ava Rose helped me to find my dress at the first shop I visited!” Leanne set her heart upon a separates set by Martina Liana. “You had the option to have the two pieces sewn together to form a dress, but I loved the idea that I could wear them again individually, perhaps choosing the top for our first wedding anniversary.”

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The bride accessorised with a belt from Richard Designs, floaty princess sleeves created by the seamstress and Jenny Packham at Debenhams shoes. “Victoria Walker, a local jewellery maker, personalised them for me with jewels, also making a bracelet to match.”

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William looked every bit the handsome groom in a black dinner suit finished with a bowtie. “They all looked so charming and sophisticated. The groomsmen had pink and white rose buttonholes with eucalyptus to complement the bridesmaids’ posies, while William wore an ivory rose.”

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Six bridesmaids stepped down the aisle with Leanne, wearing dusky pink dresses. “They each had unique hair colours and skin tones, and yet the colour suited everyone. I surprised the girls with a large pink box, featuring Ivory & Co earrings, a lace embellished handkerchief from Jupon and a white satin clutch bag.”

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Having previously met makeup artist Jessica on a shoot, the bride knew she’d found the perfect fit for her big day beauty.

“Wearing our hair up helped with the hot weather, and the accessories gave the styles a more bridal finish.”

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The couple fell head over heels for their Florence wedding castle venue, Castello di Vincigiliata. “The atmosphere was so tranquil and the gardens breathtakingly beautiful. It was so romantic that our jaws quite literally dropped when we walked through the castle gates.” 80 guests joined the couple to celebrate.

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“We embraced some Italian traditions for our Florence wedding day, so William walked down the aisle first with his mother before I entered with my father.”

“We married beneath a floral arch of sweet and avalanche roses, white hydrangea, eucalyptus parvifolia and ruscus. Each alternate chair had a loosely tied garland of roses to decorate the back.”

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The ceremony had a personal flourish, with the host, Jo Bertolino, sharing stories of the couple’s life together and what they loved most about each other. “We also chose to write our own vows. One of my favourites was William promising to make me a cup of tea every night before bed – a promise he has so far managed to keep!”

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The couple brought over all of their own table decorations from Set The Scene’s covetable collection for their Florence wedding. “While my bridesmaids each had their hair done in turn, the rest of us worked to decorate the ceremony and reception spaces. We set up hurricane vases, white umbrellas for shade and confetti cones in the ceremony area, before decorating the courtyard.

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We used silver beaded charger plates, crystal candelabra, glass vases, candleholders, a glass card box, sequin table cloths and even an easel to style the space. I was after timeless romance, so we avoided artificial light altogether. Instead, we clustered hundreds of candles to create the perfect candlelit dinner, complemented by the castle’s fire torches.”

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Guidi Lenci were the caterers to create the couple’s foodie, four-course Italian feast. “Not once did anyone need to ask for another drink. It was by far the best service we have ever witnessed. We were over the moon with the quality and presentation, too.” There were also two wedding cakes. One was the traditional Italian millefoglie, the other four tiers of lemon, strawberry, chocolate and Nutella sponges.

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Leanne’s hand-tied, cascading bouquet featured sweet and avalanche roses, white freesias, spray roses, eucalyptus and trailing ivy. The bride’s sister also created a miniature poem and picture of their late uncle to carry with her in her bouquet.

Following a fantastic disco and open bar, the couple enjoyed their final dance of the night rather appropriately to Ed Sheeran’s ‘Castle on the Hill’.

“We were lifted onto people’s shoulders, it felt like we were dancing the night away in the sky!”

A seven-day minimoon on the west coast of Italy formed the perfect finale to their Florence wedding.

SUPPLIERS

VENUE Castello di Vincigliata, Italy
DRESS Martina Liana at Ava Rose, Colne
GROOM For similar, try Slaters
ACCESSORIES Richard Designs, Ivory & Co, Jenny Packham, Victoria Walker Boutique
HAIR & MAKEUP Jessica Goodall
CELEBRANT Jo Bertolino, Tuscan Pledges
CATERING Guidi Lenci
FLOWERS Francis Flowers
CAKE Dolce Lab
DÉCOR Set The Scene
ENTERTAINMENT Alma Project
VIDEOGRAPHER Angelo La Torre

References

  1. ^ laurenmichelle.com.au (laurenmichelle.com.au)