This afternoons wedding is a special one as the photographer is a Bride whose wedding we featured at the beginning of last year. Carrie caught the wedding bug and decided to combine her love of photography and her love of weddings and just went for it! And we’re SO pleased she did, as you can tell from these gorgeous images of Harriet and Phil that she’s going to be very much in demand soon. Get in there quickly people…
Harriet and Phil’s wedding is a great example of an at-home wedding, held at Harriet’s Aunties working farm, it’s full of heart and rustic details. We love the yellow and grey colour scheme too, it’s always a winner as far as we’re concerned. Carrie has captured some beautiful moments, tears of joy and lots of laughs. It looks like a lot of fun was had. And look out for the bonus celebrity guest too!
Harriet the Bride: Even before I said yes to Phil’s proposal, myself, my mum and my aunty had toyed with the idea of a wedding reception at my aunt’s farm, following a ceremony at the local church. They are both so rustic and beautiful and less than a mile apart in the village(s) I grew up in. When I said yes, they were the two venues that came to mind straight away, and once my aunt and the vicar agreed, we didn’t look back.
There were a few challenges to face: making sure the paddock at the farm could handle a marquee; not disturbing the horses too much in the run up to the big day; gravelling the yard to accommodate for an influx of people as well as the on the day things like getting electricity and water out to the field, but Ben from Wings Events and our caterers helped us out from the start. In the end, they took care of the lion’s share of the work and we could focus on the little details that made the day our own.
I wasn’t one of those girls who had been planning her wedding since she was 10 years old. I’d looked online briefly the night before my appointment, and showed the assistant at Brides of Market Harborough a picture of something I thought might suit me and she selected what turned out to be my wedding dress. When I tried it on it felt right straight away. I tried on other dresses, but it was fairly obvious to everyone with me that it was a case of beginner’s luck. The dress was very simple so I added a diamonté belt, a simple veil and some super sparkly Irregular Choice shoes. In case of a sudden March downpour I also invested in a pair of yellow Croc wellies to keep me out of the mud on the farm. My something old, blue and new were my earrings – Phil had secretly asked my mum if he could use the sapphires from her old engagement ring (where my engagement diamond was sourced) and make them into earrings to wear on the day, teamed with my mums diamond earrings and a Tiffany bracelet borrowed from my step mum.
The Wedding Party
With six bridesmaids, all of different shapes and sizes, I jumped straight onto shopping for their dresses as soon as we got engaged. I was worried that this was going to be a mammoth task, but my luck seemed to be in when I found a supplier in America of the popular multi-way dresses. After receiving one dress from www.convertiblewrapdress.com and loving it, I ordered the other five. It was then up to the girls to find a way to style it that suited them and that they would be comfortable in for the whole day. The dresses were supplied very long (which was a god send for my very tall bridesmaid Jackie) so once the bridesmaids had chosen their style, it was up to my step mum and my mum to fix the hems.
Let’s not forget our gorgeous flower girl Lilly (my step sisters daughter). There was no question about how we wanted her to dress…like a princess. I found a gorgeous grey tutu from a shop on Etsy called Pure & Innocent Tutus. It was perfect and something that as a three year old, she LOVED wearing and was spinning around at every opportunity possible.
On the day Phil wore a charcoal, three piece suit, from TM Lewin. Phil’s groomsmen were given a pair of yellow and grey argyle socks and either a black or grey tie, depending on the colour of their suit. Phil and the best men had a splash of yellow in their buttonholes, while the groomsmen had simple white ones.
About a month before we got engaged, my stepsister Lotti showed me a grey and yellow themed wedding on Pinterest and said how good the colours looked together and that I should have it if I were ever to get married. After we got engaged I did a little research myself and fell in love with the idea. We wanted the beauty of the farm to be on show, so we tried to keep things natural, with simple flowers and ribbons. Inside the marquee we used tree slabs as the base of our centrepieces, adorned with jam jars of flowers and candles. The table plan was in an old Cox’s Apple box surrounded by herbs and the place settings were paper bags that held the cutlery the guests would need to eat the hog roast as well as a straw (I always use a straw). Each couple had a cutting from our family money plant that Phil had been nurturing for the last nine months, these were the wedding favours. The roof of the marquee was decorated with hand made pom-poms in different shades of yellow and grey, made by hand by the knit and natter group in the village.
As a Graphic Designer I designed everything and loved doing it all. I had a very good idea of how I wanted everything to look and it all fell into place perfectly, with a lot of help from my closest friends and family. In the days running up to the wedding, we had a team on site putting everything together. We genuinely couldn’t have done all of this without the help from our parents, family and friends. Thank you to everyone that helped us make our day perfect.
My friends mum Donna Davis did our flowers. After attending a few of my friends weddings with flowers by Donna, there was never a doubt of who I would call when it was my turn. I am so glad I did. Not only were the flowers beautiful and exactly what I wanted, it was also a lovely treat to have Donna arrive at the house on the morning of the wedding with the flowers and a smile that would calm the nerves off of any bride. The flowers were all very simple, but incredible nonetheless. I had a very simple bouquet of white Tulips and the bridesmaids all had bouquets of gypsophila. We then had jam jars on centre pieces and dotted around the venue filled with flowers.
The ceremony was traditional yet relaxed at the local church where I grew up. Our vicar Sian kept us both at ease and made the nuptials a lot less nerve wracking than I expected them to be. We had a choir at the church, Valley Voice. They were there to assist with the hymns and sing us through the signing of the register. All of our guests have since commented on how incredible they were and how “fun” it was to have an amazing choir during the ceremony. My brother picked and read a beautiful reading, and our flower girl Lilly stole centre stage at the alter during the prayers.
For the reception drinks we downloaded an album of Rat Pack hits and played them through an iPod, hooked up to the band’s speaker system. The band, The White Room, played in the evening and did a great job. When the band weren’t playing we used a playlist on the iPod. One of the main sources of entertainment throughout the whole day was our MC – the one and only Mr John Anderson from the 90’s TV show Gladiators. He introduced us into the marquee with his iconic “3…2…1…” And did the same for the speeches, cutting of the cake and first dance. After the speeches and in between announcements he was circling the room and fining people, for things like “being too tall”, all fines were donated to Breast Cancer Research, £200 – thank you John.
We had a vague idea of the kind of food we wanted from the start, we wanted an informal approach, but with the formality of a seating plan. A buffet can just get too hectic at a wedding so we opted for an individual table buffet for the main course. Ian Brodie provided a hog roast with all of the traditional trimmings and our caterers/co-ordinators Bumble and Co. teamed the hog roast with some delicious side dishes.
Instead of a formal starter we had canapés during the reception drinks and desserts were a free-for-all buffet. Friends and family contributed towards the dessert (special shout out to Sheila Gowen, Laura Brown, Leigh and Chris Morrell, Lynn Carson and the Groom). This was then stocked up by Bumble to ensure there was enough to go round. Our wedding cake was made by my Step Brother Tom Spiers, a two tiered chocolate cake with some metallic gold detailing. The evening food was cheese, pies and biscuits, this was sliced up out of our second wedding cake, the cheese and pie cake. We sourced our cheese from the House of Callow in Leicester and my family neighbour Del made the pies for us.
Instead of the now popular ‘sweet cart’ we had a popcorn table. Boxes of popcorn with an assortment of toppings and flavours. Our bar was a recommended company through my step sister and bridesmaid Lotti – Liquid Bars. My step dad Neil Spiers provided all of reception drinks and wine for the day.
Our photographer Carrie was recommended to us by a friend. We wanted a fly on the wall photographer, eliminating the hours of our guests hanging around while photos were taken and we didn’t want hours of us posing for photos, we wanted a more natural approach, Carrie NAILED it! We couldn’t ask for better photos and a lot of guests have mentioned that they didn’t even see a photographer on the day, yet they are in a lot of the final photos. I would recommend Carrie to any future Brides. Her style is so unique and she has a knack of capturing happiness and humour in the room.
Photography by Carrie Lavers Photography
- Dress & Veil Brides of Market Harborough
- Shoes Irregular Choice
- Marquee Wings Events
- Tree Slabs Tree Space
- Cake Tom Spiers
- Hog Roast Ian Brodie
- Cheese House of Callow
- Bar Liquid Bars
- Bridesmaids Sugar Bits
- Groom TM Lewin
- Stationery Dale Studios
- Choir Valley Voice
- Band White Room
- Make Up Megan Klaire
- Brides Hair Dunleavy’s Hairdressing
- Bridesmaids Hair Rachel Messer
- Marquee Wings Event Ltd