Scarlett and Tom married in June 2012. The venue they chose was Endsleigh House in Milton Abbot, near Tavistock, Devon.
I love a Rock My Wedding first… And today I think I am correct in saying that this is the first RMW groom to wear a bowler hat. If anyone can prove me wrong I’m sure I can find some sort of “prize” in amongst the RMW HQ clutter to send out to you 😉
Anyway – Tom rocks the bowler. Fact. And as per usual when someone wears a headpeice of distinction it manages to find it’s away amongst the masses. See how many times you can spot it!
Photography today is by super sleek, super cool Nick Tucker.
I Want To Be Grace Kelly
The best wedding dress inspiration for me was an exhibition of Grace Kelly’s clothes at the VA. My Mum bought me the book as a memento and there was a particular dress in that which eventually inspired my own wedding dress.
Chanticleer have a very talented designer, Tracey, and team of seamstresses who helped me create the dress exactly the way I wanted by making it from scratch. This way I was able to choose every little detail; the length, type of lace, buttons… So there it was; a 7-layer floor length tulle skirt, guipure lace covered bodice, lace jacket, an ivory silk sash, pearl buttons and lace halterneck as an alternative.
I was SO happy with my dress on my wedding day – I felt like me (and a bit like a 1950’s movie star!). We decided It was a mixture of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s – no wonder I couldn’t find it in a shop!
I decided I wanted a short, plain two-tier veil and found one on Ebay, exactly the style and designer I liked for an absolute steal.
I wanted my dress to speak for itself and for a while considered a plain, ivory satin covered hairband (like Cinderella) but couldn’t find one anywhere. A friend suggested that I borrow the headband from Amanda Wakeley. I decided it could be my something borrowed and fitted perfectly on my veil (which my mum kindly sewed together for me). I didn’t actually try them on together with my wedding dress until the wedding day.
I wore no jewellery other than replica pearl stud earrings, with a small diamante on top that I found in a gift shop in my Mum’s village.
My vintage wedding ring, a beautiful platinum band with 22 carat gold edges, engraved with tiny bows, was originally my grandma’s and then my mum’s when she married my dad. It fitted me perfectly and just needed a polish.
I had Tom’s wedding ring made to order in solid silver by Lilia Nash, a very talented jewellery designer in the Cotswolds who uses ethical and recycled materials.
My shoes were Isabella, by Rachel Simpson; a classic, pretty style in ivory satin with a small heel, pointed toe and large satin bow. They were instantly comfortable and I bought them a year in advance at a vintage wedding fair. My little bit of Cinderella.
Natural And Vintage
I was a little nervous about having my hair and make-up done for the wedding as I wanted to look like me and feel comfortable. I had a few issues trying to find a make-up artist so far from where we lived and decided that I would rather spend the money on buying beautiful make up that I could keep. In the end I went to a Chanel for a bridal consultation. I asked for a natural, vintage look with red lips and they did me proud. I found that applying my own make up on the morning of the wedding was a really calming distraction and received lots of compliments on the day.
I usually wear my hair in a bob, so didn’t fancy anything too fancy but wanted the bridesmaids to have statement updos. I (luckily) booked Lyndy Ewings just over a week before the wedding and decided I would have a vintage style blow dry.
Lyndy was incredible and lovely to have around. I didn’t really know what I wanted and she created stunning styles on all of us. I would highly recommend her.
Alice In Wonderland
I always wanted a mixture of vintage garden style flowers to form the main decoration for my wedding without a particular colour scheme or theme but that were completely different to any I had seen before. I went to see Emma Vowles in Totnes – she is extremely creative, she seemed to ‘get’ me and I trusted her completely. So I basically left her to it… And I knew that she would surprise me…
As a very stressed bride to be, with a million and one things left to do, I dropped in on Emma the (very rainy) day before the wedding to deliver my vintage vases to her. It just so happened that she was working on our bouquets at that very moment and there they were, sitting in little cut glass vintage vases on the counter. Mine had a nest of nude coloured garden roses on one side, each totally unique, and big velvety off-white peonies on the other, interspersed with scabious, wild mint and an array of gorgeous nude/off white flowers. The bridesmaid’s bouquets were similarly natural and soft with more peachy tones and darts of deep blue delphiniums to complement the blue of their dresses. This was the first time that I actually felt like I was getting married and I became excited rather than stressed about the wedding. It was such a special moment and I just knew that Emma would out-do my expectations.
I couldn’t resist Emma’s huge vintage swan vase to sit in between two vintage Dartmouth planter vases for the table and she filled them all with blue/green hydrangeas, gold toned roses, scabious, deep maroon dahlias and off-white peonies (to name a few). They were so stunning – classically vintage mixed with Alice in Wonderland.
Emma provided a selection of nude roses and blue delphinium heads which Tom’s mum made into buttonholes on the morning of the wedding. They were tied with satin ribbon in midnight to match the bridesmaid’s bouquets.
We also hired two 6ft hawthorn trees from Philip Nieuwoudt to decorate the courtyard. They made quite an entrance and were well watered from the torrents of rain that fell in the evening!
Wooly Tie In
We didn’t want the traditional look of matching suits/bridesmaid dresses; we had no colour scheme but just wanted everyone to feel comfortable.
We let the boys wear their own suits/shirts/shoes but Tom decided he would like them to wear vintage wool ties and tie clips to bring the look together slightly.
It took us one single shopping trip in London to find the bridesmaid dresses. The dress was the first they tried on that day, they had a vintage look to them, were simple and flattering. They looked SO spectacular and keeping the dresses simple meant that the hairstyles and flowers had more impact. I was SO pleased with the result and so it turned out that the bridesmaids themselves were my something blue!
My sister found some beautiful nude coloured, Italian leather, slingback shoes with a peep toe and finished with a bow. I bought them without the bridesmaids even trying them on and they fitted them all perfectly on the day.
Tom quite enjoyed having one element of the wedding that was a complete surprise to me on the day. He went to Vietnam the year before our wedding and had a bespoke suit (and shoes) made to his specifications when he was out there. He chose flannel grey suit with faint pinstripe and collared waistcoat. He ordered a white, vintage style collarless shirt with separate starched collar, vintage tie pin and found a pale green wool tie and bowler hat in a vintage shop. His shoes were traditional looking dark walnut leather brogues. He really looked the part. I kept giggling at him wearing his bowler hat during the day, but I must say it looks fantastic in the photographs and made his outfit extra special.
It’s A Kind Of Magic
Tom and I spent a long time looking for the right photographer for our wedding. It was really important to us that they captured the atmosphere of the wedding and we wanted our guests to feel relaxed. Being quite camera-shy, we didn’t want to spend our day posing for photographs. A close friend recommended Nick Tucker, not only on his amazing talent as a photojournalist but also on his genuine, approachable demeanour. To say Nick was fantastic is really an understatement. He was focused but calm and a true delight to have around from start to finish. The photographs speak for themselves, and, as nick put it himself, are ‘kind of magical’.
I liked the idea of having an array of home-baked cakes at the wedding and my very talented Mum stepped up to the wedding cake challenge baking two tiers of the most delicious fruit cake I have ever tasted, steeped in sherry and loving cooked in her trusty AGA. I made the marzipan and iced the cake in a simple ivory icing. It was finished with an ivory satin bow and small bunch of garden roses from Emma Vowles.
My very close girlfriends each baked and decorated a cake or cupcakes (with home-crystallised flowers) and they were proudly displayed on vintage glass cake stands. They tasted even better than they looked!
No Need To Shout
Tom and I chose to create a playlist of songs on our iPod for the ceremony and evening as we wanted to create a relaxed, fun atmosphere without having to shout over a live band or feel forced to dance prematurely in the evening.
Easy To Dance To
We never liked the tradition of a first dance and for a long time we thought we wouldn’t have one. But whilst making our playlist we thought it would be nice to have a song that got everybody on the dancefloor. We chose ‘These Are The Days’ by Jamie Cullum as it was a song often played in our kitchen when we first got together at university and is happy and easy to dance to. We briefly danced with one another before getting parents and siblings involved and it worked as a nice point to get people in the mood. It was quickly followed by the Specials ‘A message to you Rudy’ which got everyone dancing… This was one of our favourite moments of that whole day.
Heart Shaped Lavender
We never thought we would have favours as such, as we decided they could be very costly and largely unnecessary. However I liked the idea of place-names that could be kept and chose to have heart-shaped lavender bags made from hessian (by Tom’s mum) for the lunch. The lavender was from fields close to my mum’s house which made it sentimental. I used my 1940s typewriter to type each guest’s name and our initials and wedding date onto assorted strips of ribbon. These were stitched on along with random vintage buttons and loops of linen ribbon with ‘to have and to hold from this day forward’ printed onto it so that they could be hung up. We made similar lavender bags for the evening guests.
We have spent many holidays at my grandparent’s holiday home in New Quay, Wales and we decided that some gifts from the local honey farm would make wonderful favours. So we purchased a selection; miniature bottles of differently flavoured honey mead, pots of wildflower honey and Christmas decorations made from beeswax.
A Blank Canvas
One of the reasons we loved the hotel Endsleigh was that the staff were so professional and didn’t once try to influence our wedding. The stable block is a fantastic blank canvas with cobbled courtyard and beautiful pale green-grey walls. The shelves were already piled with oddly shaped/sized off white pillar candles when we arrived so I just placed some vintage bottles amongst them to add a bit of colour.
I wanted everything to look rustic but pretty;
For The Rustic
Our invitations and menus were made to order in brown card with a personalised hanging bottle motif, finished with twine bows. The brown envelopes I covered in assorted vintage stamps and typed the addresses on with my typewriter. I made up favour bags from brown paper gift bags that I found on the internet and replaced the handles with brown garden twine tied in bows.
Hessian was used to surround the hawthorn tree pots and cake board.
I used a vintage galvanised bucket, vintage wooden crate and rustic basket to hold the confetti cones and gift bags. We chose to hire traditional wooden folding chairs.
For The Pretty
I used ivory satin bows to tie luggage tags onto the chairs/basket/crate.
I stamped invitations and gift bags with ‘happily ever after’ in white ink, and we made paper pom-poms in different shades of white, cream and brown to hang from the ceiling of the stable block. The order of service booklets and favour boxes were decorated in embossed yellow and grey flowers, cake bags were decorated with white and yellow zig-zags
We dried all sorts of flowers to make the confetti, from roses to hydrangeas, and used cellophane cones tied with bows to hold them.
The flowers in the vintage Dartmouth pottery vases really helped to ‘pretty’ up the decor, I also used some of my grandma’s porcelain flowers to decorate the cake table. The hotel hung up our Mexican prayer bunting and white, lace bunting out in the courtyard, between the trees and just inside the bell tower.
Intimate With Meaning
Don’t let anybody influence the day that you and your partner want to create. We have sizeable families and large network of close friends but were really keen on having an intimate, meaningful wedding…small but perfectly formed. Of course we were sad not to have everyone there but it was more important to us that the day was relaxed so that we could spend quality time with our guests and I had always wanted to seat everyone around one long table. My Mum kindly held a lovely garden party at her house the following weekend for those we couldn’t invite on the day and this meant that I got to wear my dress again and have ANOTHER party!!!
Boutique – Chanticleer
Dress – Chanticleer
Headpiece – Amanda Wakeley
Shoes – Rachel Simpson
Hair – Lyndy Ewings
Florals – Emma Vowles
Photography – Nick Tucker
Good Hat, will travel
Scarlett and Tom’s wedding just looks like massive, massive fun – and let’s face it, that’s what it’s all about.
That, and deciding to spend the rest of your life with the person you love… And the look on their faces gives away the fact that Scarlett and Tom are doing just that. With the full support of all of those in attendance on their big day.