And so, as it is fashion week this morning we present you with a bride who has more than a touch of elegance. No more so than when sporting a cute little shrug that you can spy in more than a few of these beautiful shots taken by Summer Love Photography.
This was a wedding on a modest budget but Adele our bride shows that high street can still mean high fashion. We are big fans of mixing a bit of woolwear in with your bridal and she pulls the look off perfectly.
Adele and Matt married in the Norfolk market town of Swaffham with a ceremony at the beautiful Church of St. Peter & St. Paul and reception at Breckland Meadows Touring Park.
Too Much Choice
When it came to the dress, I knew that I didn’t want to spend thousands. For me, I wanted comfort and simplicity and to be safe in the knowledge that if it got ruined from too much partying, it wouldn’t matter. Not long after Matt proposed I had trekked into some bridal shops in Norwich with my best friend to get inspiration. The beautiful window displays and gorgeous array of dresses were certainly enticing but, once in the shop I found it really overwhelming – there was just too much choice and the prices quite frankly scared me for our small wedding budget. So, I decided to have a look at some ‘off the peg’ dresses which, in many cases, proved to be just a beautiful as the more expensive bridal shop dresses. Naturally (due to my very indecisive nature), I fell in love with several (mainly from Monsoon), but the one that caught my eye most was a simple, elegant dress from ‘Debut’ at Debenhams. Not only was it well within budget, but it had a gorgeous vintage feel with a band of pearly beads at the waist.
It wasn’t until it was hanging up, teamed with a gorgeous angora shrug from Monsoon, that I realised how similar it was to the dress Kate Middleton wore on the evening of her wedding! On the day, it did exactly what I wanted it too – I was comfortable, I felt elegant and I could do all the crazy dancing I liked!
A Mix Of Vintage And New
My accessories comprised of a veil by Pierce Fonda II at Debenhams which had a gorgeous ivory satin trim around the edge. I loved how this fell and looking back at our pictures, it complimented my dress perfectly! For jewellery, I had a mix of vintage and new. My earrings were probably my favourite item. I bought them at a vintage wedding fair in Norwich and they were actually made by our photographers mum! They’re made of silver twisted into a sphere and inside, a vintage pearl! They matched my dress fantastically!
For my bracelet, I have RMW to thank for the piece on the new Jenny Packham range for Debenhams. I love Jenny Packham, but unfortunately our budget couldn’t stretch to one of her accessories… or so I thought! After finding out she had done a range for Debenhams I went onto the website straight away and fell in love with a silver and pearl bracelet with a hint of sparkle! Thank you RMW! For a necklace, I chose to wear the one I wear every day. It was a graduation present from my parents and I have worn it every day since – It felt only natural to wear it on my wedding day too!
The Perfect Height
My shoes were another Debenhams buy – I fell in love with them immediately. They were ivory with a flower and some pearls. I am a serious shoe person, but I’m not the best at walking in heels. These babies were the perfect height, comfort, and were just gorgeous. I loved seeing them peep out of my dress!
A Slight Curl
My hair and makeup was done by a lovely lady called Beth. She has recently launched her hair and beauty business which she has set up with the help of The Prince’s Trust. I had a trial with her a few months before the wedding and she took so much time and care over my hair and make-up, and it really made me feel fantastic. I mainly wanted my hair down with a slight curl. I had some hair up with a loose plait at the back held with some pearl headed grips from Monsoon. For my make-up I wanted a vintage feel and went for a golden colour on my lids with some liquid eyeliner flicks, and for my lips, ‘Vintage Rose’ by Rimmel.
I adore flowers and I knew that I wanted all the flowers to have a relaxed and not too stylised feel to them. Matt and I were on a tight budget for our wedding as we bought a house at the end of 2010 which took all of our savings. It meant we had to reign ourselves in for our wedding, making lots of things ourselves, including the flowers! All together the flowers cost less than £100.
I bought a bulk of dried lavender ahead of the wedding as I knew that I wanted lavender to feature prominently (I adore it)! A few days before the wedding me and my mum went to a local nursery and picked up armfuls of Gypsophilia, Stocks, Freesias, and Veronica’s, white sweetheart Roses and some hyacinth’s. I also bought some pots of blue Muscari which one of my lovely bridesmaids’s divided and planted into lots of teacups! All of the flowers, including the table centres, bouquets, bridesmaids bouquets and buttonholes were done the day before the wedding by myself and my bridesmaids. This was slightly stressful, and I must admit that there were a couple of ‘Bridezilla’ moments, but we were so happy with the outcome and got some lovely compliments! I had bought florist supplies on ebay like pearl headed pins and florist’s tape.
The bouquets and buttonholes were finished with some hessian wrapped round with lace and ribbon. For me, my bouquet was extra special as it meant I could include a very important person who couldn’t be with us on the day. It had a small vintage heart-shaped frame brooch attached to my bouquet with a picture of my gorgeous sister who passed away last year. It was my way of having her with me as I walked down the aisle and with me all day.
All of the groomsmen were kitted out with suits hired from Slaters. They all looked very handsome! We chose lavender cravats and handkerchiefs to compliment the bridesmaid dresses. The bridesmaid dresses were bought from Monsoon in a sale for £32 each! They all looked absolutely stunning in them and the embroidered detail on the top gave them the vintage feel we were after! For the bridesmaid’s shoes, we got some ivory peep toe pumps with a corsage on the front to echo my shoes. These were from Faith, also in the sale for £30!
Matt wore a matching suit to the groomsmen with a handmade buttonhole of lavender, veronica, and gypsophilia. For a pre-wedding present I had bought him some cufflinks in the shape of musical notes (his main passion is music and the guitar), which I had seen on my hen do during a visit to Chatsworth House in the Peak District. I wanted to give him something that was personal, so I also had a guitar plectrum engraved with our initials and the date of our wedding. I asked the best man to give it to him on the morning of the wedding – but it turns out he did it the night before to cheer Matt up during a particularly fraught moment trying to get the Order of Service done!
One of my favourite parts of the day was during the speeches. Matt had said how nervous he was about his speech – but I soon understood why when he announced that he was going to play some of his songs to me! He had never played to more than 10 people before, so it was such a romantic thing to see him perform some of the songs he had written about me from when we first met, to a song he wrote especially for the wedding! Everybody loved it and I can honestly say that I felt so proud of him. It was just so romantic!
We found our photographer at a Vintage wedding fair in Norwich and knew immediately that Summer Love Photography was the right choice for us! Jo made us feel so comfortable and at ease with what is one of the most difficult decisions to make for your wedding day! We told Jo that we wanted relaxed, vintage style photography with lots of black and white shots and we were absolutely overjoyed with the outcome! Jo was absolutely excellent on the day and saved me from a particularly blustery moment outside the church before the ceremony when my veil flew out of my hair! We also had a beautiful sneak-peak of a few photographs in our inbox the very next day which was a wonderful treat before our honeymoon!
Our cake was made by a very talented friend. We had liaised with each other for a few months before, swapping pictures and ideas. In the end, we decided to go for a two-tier sponge-cake with a gorgeous string of bunting pinned round each tier. It was absolutely delicious and we were so pleased to have something made by a friend rather than shop-bought to keep in budget.
Music Is The Food Of Love
Music is very important to us both and so we had carefully considered how best to incorporate it into our day. We sent out little DJ slips with our invitations asking guests to request three of their favourite songs so that they would have their own little number featured. Once we received these, Matt begun compiling two different playlists, one before food which was more folksy and mellow, and one for the evening which had some classics! Matt also made CD’s for guest’s to take home as an extra little wedding favour. We have RMW to thank again for the amazing CD template Adam posted. We titled the CD as ‘Our Life in Music’ and it was another way of incorporating our passion into our day.
After the evening BBQ was served, we had the first live set from the band ‘Mind the Gap’. We felt so lucky to have them play and was another way of incorporating family into the day (my brother-in-law is the drummer)! The moment I remember the most is when they sung ‘You Got the Love’ and dedicated it to me and Matt. It just summed up the whole day and I was just tingling all over with happiness.
Our first dance song was a song called ‘Twilight’ by Dawn Landes. It was significant to us because we had discovered her at the first live gig we saw together. She was supporting an American folk artist called Josh Ritter and it remains to be one of the best gigs we have ever been to!
Good Clean Fun
We wanted to have something relatively unique for favours. I had got the idea of individually wrapped handmade soap from a brilliant book called ‘Handmade Gift’s, Vintage Style’ by Sarah Moore. I had toyed with the idea of making the soap myself but ideally wanted lots of different flavours which would mean lots of different ingredients. But I then found a fantastic eBay shop called ‘Bee Beautiful’ and ordered 150 mini soaps for around £15. There were some gorgeous flavours including ‘Cherry & Oatmeal’ and ‘Lemon, Lime & Bergamont’. I then wrapped each one individually in different paper using ribbon, flowers, fabric and all sorts as decoration. I wanted our guests to have something individual to take home and everybody loved them. They doubled up as place names using small brown luggage tags and some free French vintage soap templates I found on the internet. I loved how they looked and they were placed on an individual cake plate for each guest.
A DIY Day
Our wedding was definitely a DIY effort and most things were created ourselves such as the hessian wrapped jars, table numbers and table plan (being probably my favourite project). I used an old wicker picnic basket turned on the side and attached some paper bunting and luggage tags with a table plan on each one. I used the remnants of paper left from the favours to back these. I also appliqued some birds with our initials to decorate the top. It was pretty simple to make, but it felt like something different and I really enjoyed making it!
We knew we wanted a vintage, country sort of feel and so lots of bunting was essential. With the help of my best friend we made about 80 metres worth in total. Though it took lots of time, it was made for a fraction of the price of shop-brought bunting! I made some hessian bunting with applique letters and made some for the top table with ‘Matt and Adele’ sewn. I did the same thing for the cake table and candy bar. We also discovered how to create tissue paper pom-poms and were struck by how simple they were to make and how effective they looked in the marquee!
With the main theme being vintage – Matt and I had spent over a year collecting china tea-sets, cake plates, sugar bowls and all sorts. We mainly bought from carboots and jumble sales whilst picking up other bits like vintage tea tins and jugs which we used for flowers. We popped a teabag in each cup with our own personalised tag saying ‘Fancy a cuppa?’ so that guests could fill up from the urn we borrowed from Matt’s parents. I had also bought some amazing pastel coloured, heart shaped sugar cubes for the sugar bowls – they went down a treat! We now have so much china and vintage bits that I have set up a small business with my mum called ‘Adeline Vintage Interiors’. We sell our bits on eBay and at antiques fairs.
Matt loves sweets and we both fell in love with the idea of a candy bar. To fit in with our vintage theme we scoured eBay for a vintage dresser and found one for £60! We were so pleased with it! We displayed the sweets in vintage bon-bon jars and glass dishes – we even found a set of vintage scales from a car-boot sale in which we placed some love-hearts!
For the guest-book we also wanted something a bit different. Another of our carboot finds was a vintage typewriter which we hoped guests would use to type out their messages – but we found it too temperamental so decided to use it for decorative purposes instead! I had found some free vintage hankie templates which I thought would be great for guests to write their notes on. We provided some little pegs and guests hung them up along the marquee! We plan to frame some of them so we can have them on display!
I had seen another vintage-style wedding on RMW that had provided games for guests to play and thought it would provide a great icebreaker! We picked up a great selection at a local antique’s fair and we attached luggage tags to them asking guests to try and sample them all!
We loved all the DIY projects (although they were stressful at times), and meant that we could have the personal wedding we wanted without breaking the bank.
Personal To Us
Our family and friends made our wedding the wonderful day it was. Without their help and generosity we would have never achieved what we did. Although our DIY projects meant that our wedding could be personal to us, it was our family and friends who gave us the perfect day!
I read many accounts from brides saying how quickly the day go’s and how you must savour those moments alone with your hubby, and I really took this advice on board! There were moments when I looked around at the guests and spent a couple of minutes really taking it in so that I could remember it forever. It was by far the best piece of advice I read – it’s a day that you work hard towards, to show family and friends your love for your partner, so the most important thing to do is savour it!
Photographer – Summer Love Photography
Dress – Debenhams
Shrug – Monsoon
Shoes – Debenhams
Entertainment – Mind the Gap
Favours – Bee Beautiful
There we have it – proof that a budget wedding need not be short on style and fashionable touches.
Now of course Adele and Matt clearly put in a lot of hard work D.I.Ying and scouring theft stores, carboot sales and eBay to collect together the trinkets and treasures that they needed to put their personal stamp onto their big day. This type of organisation really will pay off though, especially if you are on a budget.
I am also really pleased to see that Rock My Wedding played a part in providing some inspiration and ideas too… Those CD covers look immense. Makes it all worth while.
*warm glowy feeling*