Right, you definitely need to get comfy this morning as you are about to witness a whole host of gorgeousness at this intimate garden party wedding. From the DIY decor adorning the rustic barn, to the ditsy print bridesmaid dresses and not forgetting the brides vintage lace gown and bespoke shoes. I have a feeling there will also be a lot of pinning action when you see all the gorgeous wild blooms. Anna Hardy's images definitely do all the talking so I shall keep you no more. Enjoy every detail, there's SO much inspiration.
The DressAmy the Bride: I wanted to find something vintage, that I could also dance the night away in, the dress I wore was a 1960 Harvey Bernin. Colour played a big part for our wedding and so I really wanted some shoes that would add to that. After searching high and low on the highstreet they either didn’t fit my tiny feet or had a huge heel, I was able to locate the handmade shoes from Barossa Valley made to fit, Getting these handmade to my size and colour request added to the personal DIY style wedding that we planned.
Grooms AttireIn keeping with my vintage dress, the groom decided a waistcoat and smart patterned shirt with bowtie would be in keeping with the style for the day.
The VenueWe chose the The Garden Barn after visiting others in Yorkshire where we both are originally from, at first we thought it would be a nice touch to be married in our home county but we were unable to find one that we felt was right, none of the venues gave the freedom to do what we wanted. As we were planning the wedding from Australia it was important that we had the freedom to implement all our ideas. My parents then took us to a venue my dad had found on his drive back from work one night, we dropped in without appointment, it was just perfect for the day we had pictured, we both agreed there and then that it had to be there, on that very same first visit the owner came out to meet us and confirmed that it could accommodate all our ideas and more. Plus it fit our budget. Throughout the whole planning the owner was so easy to work with and this made the planning process from Australia very smooth! I highly recommend this barn as a blank canvas with lots of outside space. The owner was amazing on the weekend of the wedding also. She came to meet us when setting up on the Friday and provided homemade biscuits and cakes along with tea and coffee and was genuinely interested in everything we were doing, then on the evening of the wedding day came out to the garden to light all the lanterns on the tables, we didn’t even know she had done it but it was nice for her to be interested and involved. The venue was also great because we hired it for 3 days, Friday before the wedding to set up, Saturday for the full day party and Sunday to tidy up, we had full run of the place, we really could do what we wanted. The only thing it didn’t allow was confetti, but the bubbles were so much better when walking back down the aisle!
Colour Scheme/DecorWe didn’t have a strict colour scheme, our theme for the wedding was English country garden, we made mis-matched bunting from a variety of material from charity shops and friend, and the tissue paper pompoms whilst in Sydney. The vintage bottles and other props were collected by my parents over the year building up to the wedding. They were able to find some real amazing pieces for very little cost which was an important part, not just because of budget but also because we were keen to recycle reclaimed items. As well as the props my parents made 70 slate placemats and 70 linen napkins. The wooden pallet used to write the food menu was “borrowed” from a local farm and the other wooden boards which we found or salvaged were all painted on by the wonderful bridesmaids, the week leading up to the wedding. The week leading up the wedding was so much fun, flower arranging, painting the wooden boards, cleaning all the slate mats. Seeing all our family and friends again after more than a year, creating memories with them, it was a real team effort, and everyone enjoyed themselves, we tried to stay relaxed and go with the flow, everything was so chilled out. The paper swans were a very important to the wedding as the groom had made one when we first met, all the swans were folded by both of us in Sydney and carefully packaged for our trip back to England.
Flowers/FloristThe flowers were a real important and personal part of the day, we spoke with the local florist at the market about sourcing the flowers from them directly as we wanted to work with what was in season and for it to feel like it was all picked from the surrounding fields. We found out that they had fresh flowers delivered by their drivers (who drove to Holland) to their little work shed on Thursday. We (myself, groom, bridesmaid and my mum) went to the shed on the Thursday and spent a couple of hours picking out the flowers we wanted from the ones they had delivered, it was like a flower jumble sale, boxes and boxes, stacks upon stacks of flowers! We all rummaged around, pulling out what we liked and making sure we had a good balance of colour. So much fun and a fraction of the price has we paid for a professional florist, this way is good if you have a few hours to but the flowers together and are not to strict on how the flowers look. Each bridesmaid did their own bouquet to match their vintage flowery dress, then my mum did my bouquet, big, wild and colourful. Then it was everyone for flower arranging, celebrant, groom, grandparents, uncles and aunties, into all the vessels and props that my mum and dad had collected. We did hire a few things, like the big wooden doors for the aisle to hang the swans from, tables, chairs and plates, everything else was either second hand or from the caterers
The Wedding Party FashionFor bridesmaids I wanted something non traditional, a dress they could dance in and wear again. I purchased all 3 dresses for less than $250! In Australia, Bargin! By this time they all lived in England so they all met up with my mum, and she fitted them, to make the dresses feel ‘fancy’ we added the petticoats. For the groomsmen we again wanted something that they would feel comfortable in and wear again. We decided on a plain white shirt with brown trousers, the dickie bows added the colour and tied in with the dickie bow worn by the groom.
CeremonyWe had a close friend who we met in Sydney be our celebrant, it was perfect, we wrote our own vows and having someone up there who we knew us both made the ceremony feel so personal.
EntertainmentMonths and months before even arranging the food we started creating a wedding playlist for the day, music is an important part of our lifes, we try to go to as many live gigs as possible and there is always music playing in our apartment so it only made sense to take our JukeCase to England and play varied tracks, we still listen to this playlist today. On our RSVP card we asked our guests to list songs that they would like to hear, which we included into the playlist. I walked down the aisle with my dad to “all i want is you” blaring from the JukeCase, which is a soundtrack from the Juno.. We had garden games that we had sourced from all over, handmade jenga, badminton set from an auction and hired the croquet set, everyone young and old had a go (some with more success than others) The evening we hired a band who played the first dance song “Read My Mind” by the killers, strating of slow and then the full band joining in, at the end everyone was up and dancing, it really hit of the evening.
FoodAh the food! We really could have not asked for anything more! The staff at the Main Ingredients Company were great from start to finish, so professional, with one of their main organisers originally Australian, it was a perfect fit and they fully understood the difficulties of planning a wedding from the other side of the world. Then there was the actual food! It was amazing. English picnic food was our theme, picnic canapés for starters, followed by a sit down hog roast with all the trimmings, then a selection of our favourite desserts and of course the impressive looking, and tasted amazing wedding cake. And i even managed a bit of everything. We didn’t have a table plan, so at 4pm, everyone found a seat on the big banuquet tables, made people talk and laugh the evening away. Me and Harry had our own table, which was perfect because it meant that we got some time out to really chat to each other and sit back and take it all in, one of the best decisions we made. No table plans really do work! We supplied our own drinks and setup a drinks table with cast iron bath tub filled with ice and frozen water balloons to add colour, the catering staff were happy to replenish the bath tub and top up the cocktails in the big tap-jars when required. We had a selection of two cocktails that we both love to drink, and made it really easy to cater for. We wanted to keep the staff members down for the day and also didn’t want guest worrying about money or queuing so supplying our own drinks was an important part and it worked so well.
PhotographerAnna Hardy was amazing, we were recommended her by another photographer we found online but was not available, finding a photographer was the hardest part and once we found Anna online and then spoke with her on Skype we were set. Anna was amazing at preparing prior to the day, gathering all the information about our guests and the kinds of photos we wanted (which were of guests enjoying themselves naturally) to ensure she captured the pictures. On the day Anna was both a stealth photo ninja (taking what turned out to be a crazy amount of pictures) and another guest at the wedding.
StationeryMy sister, mum and one of my bridesmaid all had a part to play in creating and making our wedding invitations, mum drew then, sister painted them and a bridesmaid did the typography.
AdviceOh we wish we could do everything single bit of it again! The day was perfect, the sun shining, people dancing and eating till their hearts content. It was amazing to spend quality time together and celebrating with everyone we love the most. Word of advice, enjoy it all, every single bit of it, all the organising, the spreadsheets, the budgeting, hand sewing the buntin to0 saying i do in front of all our loved ones too dancing to our first dance, every single bit of it is so much fun and to do this with my now husband was amazing.
Bridal Boutique: Forever Vintage | Bridal Shoes: Rose-Anne Russell | Venue: The Garden Barn | Decor/Styling: Classic Crockery | Caterer: The Main Ingredient | GroomsWaistcoat: Ted Baker | | Shirt & Trousers: Next | Bow Tie: B.Ties | Entertainment: Coast Entertainments | Transports: The Little Vintage Car Co