As in the song by Adele – some really beautiful lyrics.
Made even more beautiful by the fact bride Ruth’s best friend and bridesmaid Helen sang it (accompanied by her Dad on the guitar) as Ruth and husband Ian’s first dance.
I bet there wasn’t a dry eye in the house. (Or the Barn should I say – the cute couple were married at Stone Barn in the Cotswolds.)
As well as the tears and the joy there was also super pretty flowers (I’m expecting a floral pinning extravaganza this morning) a gorgeous Sassi Holford gown and a cake that I want to steal…all captured to perfection by RMW sponsor Chris Barber.
And Ruth’s niece? she TOTALLY stole the show folks.
Happy Monday lovelies.
Light And Wavy
I never wear my hair up so an ‘up do’ was out but I wanted something to keep the veil in place so decided on a half up style with some volume at the crown as my hair is quite fine with loose waves. Kelly from Blushes Salon Cheltenham came to my parents house on the morning to do my hair together with the bridesmaids, my Mum and anyone else who happened to ask. She was fantastic.
I wanted my make up to look quite natural as although I wear make up every day it’s always pretty light. I found it really hard to know what ‘look’ to go for and what would best suit my features. When I met up with Donna for the trial we decided to go for more definition to the eyes with a subtle lip colour.
Sassy In Sassi
I knew I wanted a dress with some structure to it to flatter my figure and I also wanted something with cap sleeves or a shrug as I don’t feel comfortable being completely strapless. There’s a running joke between me, my friends and Ian that if we’re in a shop and there is something floral then it will be the first piece of clothing I try on, so as soon as I saw the Marianne dress with the hand stitched flowers and pearls to the bust and shrug I new it was the one. I remember one day when I was having a wobble about the dress not being right for me Ian said ‘so you’ve not found one with flowers on it then?!’ and my ‘wobble’ disappeared!
Flowers And Pearls
I had a hairpiece by Jenny Packham and a floor length single tiered veil, both of which were from Carina Baverstock Couture. I loved the hairpiece as soon as I saw it and it complimented the detail on my dress perfectly with its flowers and pearls.
I decided quite early on that I wanted navy Bridesmaid dresses and them to be quite soft. One of my Bridesmaids lives in New Zealand and wasn’t going to be in the UK until 2 weeks before the wedding, my other Bridesmaid was my sister who is a real tomboy and basically said she’d wear whatever I chose!
I spent quite a lot of time trawling websites and various ones I decided on sold out by the time I had made the decision ( I’m very indecisive). In the end I went for these beautiful French Navy chiffon dresses from Coast – a maxi dress for my sister and knee length one for Helen, and in the end I’m glad the other dresses sold out as they both looked beautiful in them. To tie them in with my dress I bought some floral lace and my Aunty made some beautiful shrugs to go with the dresses.
Grey On Pink
Our niece and nephews were our flower girl and pageboys and their outfits were all from Monsoon.
For the groomsmen we decided to hire suits. Ian wore a blue suit and we couldn’t find anywhere to hire suits in a colour that matched so we went for grey suits with dusky pink ties and handkerchiefs that Ian also wore to match. We got the suits from Slaters.
Relaxed And Rustic
I love flowers and knew that I wanted lots of them at the venue. Beth Cox did our flowers (firstname.lastname@example.org), she works at the Stone barn a lot and was able to give us suggestions about what would work best in the space. I wanted a very relaxed, rustic feel to the flowers so we went with seasonal flowers in pinks and creams for the bouquets and buttonholes.
For the tables we had vases and with seasonal flowers in pinks creams and blues and jam jars with hydrangea heads. The show stoppers (and I think one of my favourite things about the whole day) were 3 huge balls of flowers and foliage hanging from the ceiling – two were in the stone part of the barn where we had our ceremony and one was in the dutch barn where we had our reception. They looked stunning and smelt amazing too, I’ve still no idea how Beth got them up there!
The Perfect Fit
Ian wore a gorgeous blue suit from Reiss. Initially we were going to buy a 3 piece navy suit, but it sold out – theme emerging here – so we bought this blue 2-piece suit and had a grey waistcoat made by Clifton Suits. The suit fitted him perfectly and the waistcoat really set it off. He wore a dusky pink tie and handkerchief and in the evening he wore a pink paisley patterned tie from Reiss. His shirt was from Paul Smith.
Ian doesn’t wear suits very often but I shall definitely be encouraging it now!
Trawling The Web
We spent ages trawling various photographers websites and Chris Barber’s was the one that stood out. We loved the way that he seemed to capture people’s personalities in his photos and how everyone seemed really relaxed. We went for some engagement photos with him in Manchester and he is just really fun and relaxed to be around which was great on the day.
We decided quite early we didn’t want a formal wedding cake but liked the idea of having lots of different cakes. We met up with Rachel from Cakes by Rachel and decided to have a cake table with a four tier Victoria sponge with fresh raspberries as the main cake with lemon and coffee and walnut cupcakes, chocolate cake pops, meringue kisses, vanilla and strawberry macaroons and shortbread heart shape cookies – needless to say they didn’t hang around very long!
Pound The Alarm
We had a Celidh as the early evening entertainment which was great fun though I soon realised how impractical my dress was for it! The band was Helen – my bridesmaid- Dad’s band and they were great, there were a lot of sweaty people by the end of it including our 3 year old niece and flower girl who was dancing away until gone 10pm!
After the Celidh we had a playlist of songs on an ipad – with our invites we had asked every to request a couple of songs and with the help of my best friend Stuart we made a playlist using this and also had music playing throughout the day. It turned out to be a very cheesy mix which was perfect (and not by accident !) it was perfect to end the night with everyone dancing – including my Dad dancing to Nicky Minaj Pound the Alarm which I’ll never forget!
Feel My Love
Our first dance was Make you Feel my Love by Adele. It was sung beautifully by Helen my Bridesmaid and best friend and she was accompanied by her Dad on the guitar. The words of the song mean a lot to us and it was made even more special by the fact Helen sang it – something Helen I had talked about for years!
The barn is beautiful in itself but to soften the interior Beth decorated the mangers and posts with ivy and candles. We thought about bunting but decided it would detract from the flowers and foliage.
Making It Special
What made our wedding so special to us was how relaxed and personal the day was. It became apparent early on that wedding planning didn’t come naturally to me and at times I found the whole process quite intimidating and overwhelming.
Quite early on we listed the things that were important to us – the venue, the food, the drink, flowers (for me) and above all we wanted everyone to feel relaxed and have fun. So this is what we focused on rather than the small details and I think it worked!
We both had so much fun and all our guests seemed to too. What I would say to reluctant wedding planners is work out what’s important to you, forget about how you think it should be, avoid wedding fairs, and remember you will be surrounded by people who love and care about you and are there to celebrate with you, not judge you! It really is the best day ever!
Brides Hair – Blushes Salon
Headpiece – Jenny Packham at Carina Baverstock Couture
Groom’s Suit – Reiss
Cake –Cakes by Rachel
Venue – Cripps Stone Barn
Photographer – Chris Barber
Do you think Ruth would loan her nieces and nephews out? for entertainment and photographic opportunities?
And I am very partial to a shrug. Particularly a pretty lace type shrug.
Anyone else covering shoulders/arms with a similar accessory for W-day?
Big Make You Feel My Love
P.S Can I just say that every Big Day should have a horse’s head wearing groomsmen drinking a cup of tea – Just for banter like.