All That Really Matters……Part 1

I adore Rock My Wedding reader Emily, not only was she the absolute vision of the classic, elegant and beautiful bride but her Big Day planning write up is honest, hilariously funny and full to the brim with unadulterated joy. By the end I was almost as excited as she was and I wasn’t even there…..

Although I feel like I was, every little special moment of the sophisticated soiree was captured to perfection by Jo and Simon at Shoot Lifestyle Photography and the happiness literally bursts through the images like a giant ray of sunshine. Perfection.

Emily and Jason were married at Coombe Lodge in North Somerset, think timeless, think effortless, think super SUPER pretty.

We love.

Third Time Lucky

Our wedding took place on Friday 11th February 2011 at Coombe Lodge, Blagdon, North Somerset.

It was our third venue ….. 7th date? Whoops.

We lost a fair chunk of money in deposits, but if you are not 110% happy with your venue then keep looking. I am so happy we chose Coombe Lodge, it was Perfect in every which way. A Beautiful Blank Canvas and the people could not have been nicer. Really, they even tried to fix my eyelashes. (A whole other story there…..).

Luxe For Less

I am really rubbish with accessorising.

Shock Horror with this accessory mad world we live in at the moment.

So I thought for my wedding day I would go OTT (and why not I am “The Bride” after all).

I found my veil first at All About Eve Bridal Wear on a random trip to my Mum’s seamstress in Cheptstow. It was just as I envisaged, cathedral length with sections of lace and little sparkly bits. Wonderful – job done.

I also wanted a headpiece, not a tiara as I kept reminding my mum. A Headpiece. (Foot stamp, pouty face). But I didn’t have the confidence to pull off something “cool”. I love Jenny Packham, and decided Acaccia II was the way to go. Apart from the price tag, eeek. You forget to budget for things like that, but then I found the lovely Suzzanah from Elegant Wedding Creations and hired it for a grand total of …. 45 Great British Pounds!

RMW To The Rescue

I was planning on wearing my mum’s diamond studs, but decided at my fitting (2 weeks before) I needed dangly ones. Oh dear. I looked everywhere – and resulted with a big fat Nothing. I kept remembering a fabulous pair I had seen in Liberty In Love (thank you RMW!) but again hadn’t budgeted for. It got to the point where you just think “who cares?” they were vintage enough, sparkly enough and just plain gorgeous.

One problem, it was Monday and the wedding was Friday. Order time you ask? 6-8 weeks. Eeek! So I called the lovely people at Liberty and it just so happened they had a pair.

In stock.

I had them on Wednesday.

Thank you Liberty!!

So all the bits were sorted, nice and simple just as I imagined. (or not.) Sometimes, things just come together and work, it was all subtle and pretty and just right on the day.

A Beautiful Moment

My dress was Erin by Enzoani – purchased from Wedding days of Cheltenham.

I didn’t want to try it on.

I REALLY didn’t want to try it on.

I was hot – too much on the clamy side for my personal liking, I was getting a teeny tiny bit whiney.

But it didn’t look like it would fit into the “cool” or “vintage lace” categories I had in mind for my dress.

They – my mum and Lexi (the lovely shop assistant, she was an absolute peach) – made me try it on.

It was dress number 5 of the first dress shopping trip extravaganza.

My mum cried.

I faintly recall myself saying something along the lines of “I just look so beautiful”.

And Lexi had a very I-told-you-so smug smile.

We left having set the bench mark, and it only had one contender – an Ian Stuart with flowers and lace and pretty much everything you could think of putting on a wedding dress.

But it wore me.

So Erin it was. With all her lace detailing by the bucket load.

Now, when we went to the fitting after it came in, it was ever so much shorter than previously (I’m only 5ft, wore low heels and didn’t plan on carrying a box around with me wherever I went) and the train ……. kind of filled the room.

So 2 weeks before the wedding we hacked (well the lovely sewing lady nicely removed) pretty much half the train.

It was perfect.

Remember YOU are in control, YOU wear the dress, not the other way round.

One Day Only

I hate bridal shoes. With a passion.

I wanted Funky-Sky-Scraper-Heels. “Shoes I could actually wear again” I would say from my moral high ground.

Couldn’t find any. Didn’t like any.

Ended up with low heeled bridal shoes.

And I loved them!!

They were comfy and pretty and vintage-esque, though they weren’t Funky-Sky-Scraper-Heels and I won’t get a chance to wear them again, I just like looking at them. One Day Only Shoes me thinks.

The Prettiest Maids

The bridesmaid’s dresses were from Monsoon and the very first W-day purchase! I really really recommend monsoon for both older and smaller dresses. Sometime overdone I agree, but that’s only because they are just so lovely!

Polished Perfection

I had a few trials done for my hair, and they all ended up with me looking like something out of a Coronation Street episode early-mid 90’s.

Nobody quite ‘got’ my loose low bun. (Believe it or not I really don’t like bridal hair ….. no offence but when does one ever walk around with a birds nest stuck on the top of scraped back hair?…. “When you get married” was my mother’s response.) Then my mum found a salon and booked me an appointment. They were fab and ‘got’ it. The front bit ended up looking messy at times, but that’s “romantic side swept fringes” for you.

For my make up, I just wanted to look like a more polished version of my everyday made up self. I went to Bobbi Brown for my base and cheeks and Dior for my eyes.

I spent a fortune and loved every single minute of it.

And I didn’t even feel an ounce guilty. Oh no, not even an ounce.

Fancy Florals

I fell in love with another man. A man Named Mr. Marc Wallace.

I think that says it all. Jason had the MW floral waistcoat in pewter with the plain tie, and the ushers had the floral ties (no waistcoat).

I’m not the biggest fan of traditional (seeing a pattern here?) mourning suits anyhoo, so got the boys suits from good old Marks and Spencers (Oh I love M & S I do).

But my Dad lived the dream and had a bespoke suit made by Mr Wallace himself (well, probably not himself), it was beautiful and if you have the budget – recommended.

AND … AND they have a new shop in Bath too. Whoop whoops and Hurrahs all round.

Venue – Coombe Lodge

Headpiece – Jenny Packham Accacia Hired From Elegant Wedding Creations

Earrings – Liberty In Love

Veil – All About Eve Bridal Wear

Gown – Erin by Enzoani at Wedding Days Of Cheltenham

Maids Dresses – Monsoon

Hair – Parks Hairdressing

Grooms Suit – Marc Wallace

Photography – Shoot Lifestyle

Told You, laugh out loud funny isn’t she?

And I’ve saved all of the gorgeous blooms and delectable reception details for part 2 lovelies, coming right up tomorrow Morning for y’all.

Big Joyful Love

Charlotte xxx

Author: Charlotte O’Shea
Purveyor of short shorts. Make-up junkie. Hopes to grow old disgracefully.

37 thoughts on “All That Really Matters……Part 1

  1. What a beautiful funny bride.

    Love the wedding, and the attitude and the dress and the hair (with you-ringleted wet gel side half up do on the side anyone???!).

    VERY much looking forward to Part 2.

  2. Such pretty pretty pretty b-maid dresses! And such pretty girls wearing them.

    LOVE the honesty of the bride… tell it like it is. Excellent

    Looking forward to P2. xx

  3. How stunning?! And a fab write up too 🙂

    and FINALLY somone wearing Erin by Enzoani – it’s just the most beautiful and unusual gown. I tried it on and my best friend cried. It’s the inspiration for the dress I’m having made 🙂

    Can’t wait for part 2! x


    Erm …… that is infact me.

    Yes me!!

    I am very poorly at this moment in time, but this has made my week!

    The eyelashes?

    I will indeed share the story because I think it acts as a VERY good warning.

    Friday 4th February – 1 week to go
    Me: “Mumsies, please call this lady and arrange for me to have super duper thick and long eyelashes put in.”

    Monday Evening 7th February 2011 – 4 days to go
    Me: “Hmmm, eyelash Lady these eyelashes are ever so long ….”
    Eyelash lady “They’ll settle, any problems and I’ll come back and fix them.”

    Well they didn’t settle.

    In fact they were truly awful.

    They itched, there were quite a few led horizontally (yes yes horizontal!). And they were stuck on mid way through the lash so the root part kept poking up (I could fit my fingernail under half the lash). They eyelashes weren’t great quality as I could see in the cold light of day.

    Tuesday 8th February – 3 days to go
    Me : “Mum, these eyelashes are awful can you please ask the lady to come back”

    Wednesday Evening 9th Febraury – 2 days to go
    Me : “Erm mum, wasn’t the lady meant to be here like an hour ago??”

    She never turned up.

    Didn’t answer her phone.

    Or texts.

    Or voicemails.

    I had these awful eyelashes and only had 1 day to fix them.

    1 day.

    Where I already had a Gazillion things to do.

    Thursday afternoon I find myself in this lovely salon in Clifton. They spent 2 hours (2 hours I didn’t have) working on my eyelashes.

    It was the worst job they had ever seen.

    They tried their best, but she had used so much cheap glue they couldn’t get them off.

    There was only 1 solution to not looking like a drag queen.

    It was a tough decision, and the absolute last resort.

    They. Had. To. Cut. My. Eyelashes.

    Even the real ones.

    The lady gave me a cuddle.

    They didn’t look THAT bad.

    Really, they didn’t. The girls did a fabulous job.

    But I cried. A lot.

    I was pretty much inconsolable.

    It was 4.30 (I think) we were meant to be at Coombe Lodge setting up and meeting Jo and Si to show them around. I was stressed, we were late, and I had no eyelashes for goodness sakes! So needless to say, I was in a bit of a state. I came in all puffy eyed with big red patches.

    “I (sob) have (sob) no (sob) eye (sob) lashes (sob sob sob)”.

    Then Sara (one of the co-ordinators) took me away from everyone else, sat me down, made me a cup of tea and told me they looked fine, just fine. And listed all the people she had thought of that could help. And would help.

    Her and Eric (our co-ordinator) were just amazing, they made me feel so much better about the whole thing.

    (I have a sneaky suspicion there was something stronger than tea in my cup!)

    So that night I go to bed thinking oh well, stubby eyelashes or no stubby eyelashes I’m getting married. And smothered them with eye cream hoping to soften them a little.

    Then at precisely 3.30am the milkman woke me up (as he does most mornings). I couldn’t go back to sleep so I plodded in to my bathroom and proceeded to pull off most of the fake lashes, I lost pretty much all of my natural eyelashes and it hurt. Like hell. I may have even used the scissors on a few. (but don’t tell my mum!) A quick trip down to Boots the next morning to buy some naturlites and all was wonderful. You would never of known.

    Except that I spent 2 weeks in Mexico, with no eyelashes.

    I looked slightly scary.

    They are starting to grow back now, but I still have clumps of glue stuck to my natural eyelashes, which are refusing to budge.

    Moral to this very long winded story. Try the eyelashes WAY in advance. This industry is not regulated and anyone can proclaim to be a professional. Do your research, go to a salon, spend your money and have a “practice” at least 2 months in advance.



  5. Oh Emily. I cannot imagine how stressful that must have been but you look so beautiful on your wedding day, I cannot tell for a second what a scary lash experience you had.

    I love your dress and veil. It’s so light and bright and floaty and you look a million dollars. And those earrings? Totally worth it! x

  6. Good grief, you poor thing! I was considering getting lash extensions so will definitely be doing a trial run after reading that. Thanks for sharing!
    ps. you have a lovely writing style – a pleasure to read on a Monday morning!

  7. Oh Emily, what an absolute nightmare! You poor thing 🙁 But you looked stunning on your day and Ive been back to inspect the lashes and you genuinely cannot tell 🙂

  8. Thank you for your lovely comments ladies. Anna you have put it perfectly, it was indeed “Scary”. Scary Bananas even.

    Abi – Hurrah for the Erin!! Agreed, she is beautiful. I really toyed with keeping the bow on there.

    “To bow or not to bow?” I asked myself in the mirror (covering and uncovering with my hand). I am really pleased I kept it, a nice little bit of sparkle.

    Though I wish I had put straps on it. I do love straps.

    Kathryn – Have you just tried normal falsies? Far far cheaper, and as long as you can put them on correctly, give just as good an effect.


  9. Emily – you poor thing, that sounds AWFUL. Scary bananas and perhaps indeed scary biscuits.

    You looked very beautiful, stunning in fact, you would never have known the drama that had gone on before xxx

  10. It was a such a pleasure to be involved in Emilys Big Day and what a fantastic Wedding . Emily thank you for such kind comments.

    All the best in the future to Both of you

  11. Oh my goodness, eyelash nightmare! But Emily, you looked completely beautiful on the day, a happy, radiant, gorgeous bride 🙂

    I’m in love with the dress, and the earring… and the hair ♥

  12. Oh Emily, you poor pet. That sounds horrendous but I cant even tell from the photos that all this dramarama had been a-happening. You and your eyelashes look gorge! xoxo

  13. Wow EmilyI love your style of writing and the shot of you and Tallulah on your bed is sooooo gorgeous. You looked so beautiful and radiant you would never have known of the awful eye lash drama. Your eyes looked beautiful. Mum looks just amazing love shines for you from her eyes. Jo and Simon have created so many special and amazin shots. Can’t wait for part 2 tomorrow. x x x x

  14. Having read your eyelash tale, I looked back through your photos, you totally can’t tell! What a nightmare though, sounds horrendous and not what you need the day before your wedding. You looked beautiful, love the dress. Also, love the wallpaper in the bedroom you were getting ready in, it’s a really great colour! (is that weird?!) xx

  15. What a horrific thing to go through!! You look absolutely stunning and cannot notice a thing. Really looking forward to part 2! Xx

  16. Love the colour palette at this wedding! Beautiful muted tones, very flattering. Love the write-up in A Beautiful Moment – well written.

  17. God! Butcher!

    The good news is obviously that we can’t tell AT ALL. Those naturals obviously work!

    Its not what you need at all but it sounds like you found some corking wedding co-ordinators. I think we should name and shame this hiddeous butcher of eyelashes.

  18. M-J I don’t think that is weird as I was also thinking what a lovely selection of wallpaper, colours and mirrors there are in the background of these gorgeous pictures! Not as lovely as the bride of course, who looks simply beautiful, eyelashes and all. Congratulations.

  19. Thank you so much for such lovely comments, you wonderful cyber people. (Yes I know you are in fact real people – or are you? – but we are in cyber world).

    M-J and Val – No this is not weird. Not even a little bit. I wish I could take credit, but this is my mums super amazing taste. The duck egg blue wallpaper (also pictured in pink) is Laura Ashley, and the white mirror is T R Hayes. Not sure on the others because we’ve had them a while.

    Rebecca – Butcher of eyelashes. I wish I had thought of this one. I REALLY wish I had thought of this. To name and shame? Ohhh I don’t know … I don’t want to get into any trouble??


  20. I went to a wedding at Coombe Lodge last year and it was such a stunning venue. I honestly would NEVER have guessed about the eyelash drama from the pics either, can imagine how stressed it would have made you though.

  21. Wow Emily such drama in the week leading up to your wedding, I think I would have ended up in the fetal position in a corner somewhere! I’ll echo everyone else and say that you totally can’t tell there is anything wrong with your eyelashes! In fact as I looked through the pictures before I read the story of the eyelash butcher, I was thinking how amazing your eyelashes looked! I’m definitely going for false ones for my day now.

    You and your dress look stunning, and your write up is a fantastic read! I’m loving how many RMW brides’ weddings are being featured at the moment.


    P.S. I also love the picture of Emily’s Mum trying not to cry (with the gorgeous wallpaper behind) it’s so sweet!

  22. Oh Emily.. Petal!

    Before i read the eyelash story… you poor thing!

    on the very first picture, i sat here and went…

    “oh my…this girl has stunning eye make up….”

    i quickly saved your picture to my inspiration folder and settled down to read the rest of the story…

    i got to the second set of pictures…

    “oh my the headpeice”…. SAVE!!

    third set…

    “oh my the jewellery….”….. SAVE!!

    and so it continued.

    You are so beautiful and your wedding was stunning. I really can’t wait for part 2!

    and after actually laughing out loud in the office at your write up… (Im getting too good at disguising it as a cough!) i kind of want to be your friend!!

    and as for the eyelash hooligan! Name and Shame away….

    “they’ll never work in this town again”

    oh… i just read that back… i sound like a stalker! haha

    im not… promise?

  23. Jenny – My mum rang me earlier, her exact words were “Oh its so lovely, apart from the picture of me crying.” So I will tell her what you said, it will make her day!

    Kelpops – Oh thank you for such a lovely comment. No you do not sound like a stalker. TBH, the eyes didn’t come out as planned. I don’t think silver was the way to go, but highly recommend Bobbi Brown for their eye corrector thingy. Comes in a round tub. Is vair nice.

    Did anyone else only get 1 post today? It’s just been my silly face all day. Lol.


  24. Your wedding looks amazing, and you look stunning, I just read your comment on the eyeashes, but I’d never have known looking at the photo’s – and hey its a story to tell the grandkids?

    I too went to Wedding Days at Cheltenham, and also had Lexi look after me. Her and the shop are amazing and I found my dream dress with Lexis help – I also witnessed the told you so look from Lexi after she made me try it on when I wasn’t too sure!! Highly reccomend them and Regency Groom for the mens suits.

  25. Wow Emily!

    I found this site by doing a search on Coombe Lodge as we are getting married there in June 2012 and well i’m kind of obsessed *blushes*
    Like a previous poster I love your table plan
    So could you put us out of our misery and divulge where you had the transfer name thingy made that went over the mirror…….*gets down on knees and begs*

  26. Hi Steph,

    My dad printed the vinyls for me.

    If you could find any good graphic printing business they may be able to do the same. Though it’s a very tricky job. I have emailed Eric @ Coombe Lodge my personal email if you would like any advice.


  27. Hi Rachael,

    If you happen to check back and see this, they are from Borrowed Blue Press. They are quite pricey, but the quality and service of these folk are beyond groovy bananas.

    Highly Recommended (Yes, even with a capital R).


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