Eco tends to be a bit of a fleeting buzzword in the wedding world and although people often give ‘locally sourced’ and ‘british grown’ a nod in their planning this couple made planning an ethical and earth friendly day their main priority. That and the abundance of love on display make it a joy to share with you all. Huge thanks go to Mister Phill, their Photographer (who we have long been not-so-secret fans of!) for sending it in to us.
Sarah and Tim held their wedding service at The Immaculate Conception in Liphook, with reception celebrations in their gorgeous garden.
Organic and Handmade
Local dressmaker Danielle Taylor designed and made my dress using organic silk that she sourced especially for my dress, and loved so much that she will use for all dresses going forwards. She was delighted to discover no price difference between organic and non-organic material. The dress was designed to be fun to wear, simple and practical for garden use. Danielle was the most enthusiastic person you could imagine. I loved having my dress made by her, it was a very personal and enjoyable experience.
I wore a blue garter which my Mom made from one of my Dad’s shirts. He is no longer with us, so it was another way to keep him close. I also carried my (also deceased) Gran’s lace hanky. Not a heels sort of a girl, I didn’t want to feel like a different person on my wedding day, so I just went for a simple pair of beach sandals.
Wedding rings – Tim’s ring was made from re-cycled gold by talented local jeweller Duncan Eves (Petersfield Folly Market). Mine belonged to my Gran and is platinum. They were married during the war when my jewellery making Grandfather and his colleagues in the Birmingham Jewellery quarter had been re-deployed to war work. He made the ring for her calling in various favours to get the materials. It is with that ‘to the ends of the earth’ type love that they lived their married lives, and that is what I hope it will bring into my marriage. Duncan sparkled it up for us.
The Old Fashioned Way…
My make up was again very simple and natural with a earth friendly mineral makeup range. Both hair and makeup were done locally at Liphook’s Escarda salon.
Go for Green
Tim and his boys hired their suits from Moss Bros. Many of Tim’s friends go back to his school days, so I collected old ‘prefect’ badges for them to wear, with ‘head boy’ for Tim and ‘vice head boy’ for the best man. Tim had a favourite green tie which was actually the item that dictated the colour scheme rather than the other way around! The green was matched in the jewellery and pashminas of the bridesmaids.
The bridesmaids wore simple white dresses, which is actually the traditional colour for bridesmaids, who are supposed to confuse any evil forces away from the bride! I wanted them to have something that they would wear again and feel themselves in. They chose their own dresses and elected to wear the same.
Because it was an outdoor wedding in September I was concerned that we might be cold, so when I saw green pashminas on the online ethical shopping store www.thenaturalstore.co.uk I thought we had the solution – they were ethically sourced cashmere and silk fabric hand printed with eco-friendly inks. However, when I came to order, they had finished the line. A bit disappointed, I got in touch with the designer Candice Wren to see if she had more, and she was lovely. She ended up designing a sunflower print just for us, and for the same price too!
Tim looked very handsome and traditional in his hired morning suit and favourite tie. But, as corney as the truth sounds, the thing that made me swoon was the love that he wore in his heart. He had worked so hard in the run up to the wedding – in such a labour of love – that I couldn’t have felt more loved and supported. And as I made my way up the aisle, the words of the song that I had chosen to enter to couldn’t have been more heartfelt…. Annie’s Song.
You fill up me senses like a night in a forest
Like the mountains in springtime, like a walk in the rain
Like a storm in the desert, like a sleepy blue ocean
You fill up my senses come fill me again.
Come let me love you, let me give my life to you
Let me drown in your laughter, let me die in your arms
Let me lay down beside you, let me always be with you
Come let me love you, come love me again.
A Sunny Disposition…
I love sunflowers – their bright, cheerful colour, their sunny disposition and the fact that they will always seek out the light (great role models!), so it was always going to be sunflowers! Plus, they are in season for September and easy to grow.
Tim and I grew them together, along side our veg patch. They didn’t all bloom in time, so our florist supplemented them with stems from her supplier. Our fabulous florist Findlays was chosen because she is local and because she was 100% supportive of us growing our own flowers. She totally got our earthy theme and created the most perfect arrangements. In the church we had arrangements on the altar, and stems on each pew. At home we had arrangements around the garden in milk churns and other old rustic vessels that we begged and borrowed, smaller arrangements on the tables and a flower on each plate.
A quick mention about confetti….I love confetti – it is a fun tradition that gives guests something physical to do to express their joy immediately after the ceremony. People get a bit conscious about approaching the bride and groom out of order and there is often a bit of a stand off as the right order is worked out. Confetti takes all of that away – an ice-breaker if you will. But we also wanted to respect the environment. Out walking the dog one afternoon, I stuck upon the answer. We live surrounded my heather, which separates into pretty buds and dries very easily. So we collected a big bag, and divided it into cones made from recycled brown paper, which our flower girl handed out on the day.
Sun on a Cake
My best friend Sara made our cakes for us. I was playing with some ideas about home made cakes one weekend when she was visiting. Armed with a photo of an outrageously expensive cake with stylised sunflowers on it, I was pondering the question of ‘how can we do that ourselves?’. It was a pretty arrogant question, as I quickly proved to be hopeless at moulding icing. Sara was another matter however. Although she too had never made a decorated cake, she is an arty lass experienced in working clay. She was just doodling really, but when she made a lifelike replica of a daffodil growing outside and loved doing it, the answer was staring us in the face. Sara was going to be cake maker.
She did an extraordinary job. We had one small cake to cut and 100 cupcakes. They were all homemade organic carrot cakes or chocolate beetroot cakes all with buttercream icing. Each cupcake had a handmade sunflower on top, and the big cake had a lifelike sunflower bloom. We cut the cake using the cake knife that my Mom and Dad used at their wedding.
Nobody could believe it! We all really hope that she goes into business with it. She took several commissions the night of the wedding. (contact can be made through me)
You just can’t beat a sunflower for bringing a bit of sunshine your way can you? And can you believe they grew them all themselves?
Just wait until you see the explosion of colour that is the reception…