The flowers in this mornings wedding are simply beautiful. The Garden Gate Flower Company grow all of their blooms organically on a Cornish farm and arrange them in such a creative yet organic way, that they will have your heart skipping a beat. The spring blossom chandelier is one of the prettiest floral arrangements I’ve ever seen.
In fact, this whole wedding is just brimming with artistic touches and so it comes as no surprise that the Bride, Anna, is a stationer, who has produced work for M&S and Paperchase. So naturally, she created the stationery for her own wedding, using a palette of charcoal grey, white and a subtle pinky peach.
Anyone who reads the blog regularly will know I’m a big fan of a rustic marquee wedding, and I just love how stylish this one is – the tables and chairs from Virginia’s Vintage Hire really help to make the tent look inviting, and the relaxed way of serving food just makes it into a big party. Oh, and anyone worrying about the weather for their big day should remember that Anna and Tim took to choppy waters to get to their wedding reception – a little bit of rain didn’t stop them 😉
Anna The Bride: We wanted our wedding to a laid back, rustic style, family wedding by the water in Cornwall where we live. With just 9 months to plan the big day we set to work booking the quaint little church of St Kea where we both go each Sunday. We picked a beautiful spot in Penpol creek for a marquee reception, this is a stones throw away from my parents house and a place that is very special to us both. We decided my Dadʼs boat was the perfect way to arrive and we were really excited when Timʼs Dadʼs jazz band offered to play on the quay. Family came from Australia to the East and America to the West, leading to a jammed packed church and marquee. With a combination of my design skills and Timʼs military focus on the organisation it all came together very well… despite the Cornish ʻspringʼ weather.
I went for a classic vintage feel with a Justin Alexander gown in ivory/gold. The dress was figure hugging with an elegant mermaid style bottom and chapel length train. The lace was Queen Anne Venice and was just so intricate. The colour was a subtle antique gold which really stood out from the other dresses hanging on the rail. I tried on lots of dresses but there was something different about this one and I thought the style would compliment Timʼs striking Naval suit. With my grandmaʼs pearl earrings that had been worn by 3 generations of brides on their wedding days as my ʻsomething old and borrowedʼ and a beautiful rosette made by my 6 year old nephew as my ʻsomething blueʼ I was all set.
Tim is an Officer in the Royal Navy, so his outfit choice was not a difficult one, wearing his best black uniform and carrying the sword that both his Father and Grandfather has worn before him (later proving perfect for cutting the cake). In the evening he changed into his ʻMess Dressʼ short black jacket, which was adorned with a rose gold pocket watch which I had given him as a wedding gift that morning. He returned the surprise by having one of my signature ʻAnna Victoriaʼ designs printed onto the back panel of his dress shirt, which he unveiled after the first dance.
We chose Point Quay Green right by the water in Penpol Creek, a stoneʼs throw away from my parents house. An idyllic spot where where the annual village regatta is held and where we had spent many hours crabbing and messing about in boats. Once we had decided on Point Quay, arriving by boat was the obvious choice. However our elegant arrival across the water in my dadʼs old Druscombe Lugger became a little more of an adventure when the Cornish weather decided to be….dramatic. Our plan to have our ￼photographer in a separate dinghy became unworkable, so she hitched a ride in a local fishing trawler to catch her shots.
We were limited on space, so the traditional wooden pole marquee was crammed with long trestle tables from Virginiaʼs Vintage Hire, which meant a post-dinner team effort to make space for dancing. With no room for a bar, we had a few pieces of reclaimed furniture adorned with all kinds of drinks at the end of the tent for everyone to help themselves from. An armoire for G+T in tea cups, a stained glass bureau filled with a dozen single malts and cigars for later, and an antique farmhouse kitchen table laden with a tin bath of bottled beers and a keg of ale from the local Tremethick Brewery.
As the owner and designer of Anna Victoria, I have created bespoke stationery products for many other brides, but I was really excited to have the opportunity to fulfill my toughest brief to date by designing my own wedding stationery. I created a hand drawn monogram of our initials which was framed by a rustic and whimsical wreath and after lots of deliberation and conversations with the team at Blush Letterpress I went for a simple charcoal grey colour for the invitations on a stunning white GFSmith paper stock and then introduced a subtle pinky/peach for the rest of the stationery suite. The theme carried across the RSVPs, orders of service, place settings, seating plan,map and flags. I incorporated a rustic touch with the addition of natural twine to tie the orders of service together. We had a selection of macaroons as favours for each guest which I hand tied with grey/gold butchers twine and designed the packaging too.
My husband and I (still sounds strange!!) spent months collecting props and furniture from charity shops, friends and family to create our dream wedding. We had so much fun and it made it particularly special seeing it all come to life on the day. We made a lot of work for ourselves and at times it was stressful but it again proved to me how well we work together as a team and I think the look and feel of the whole day truly represented us!
The colour scheme was a mixture of peach, gold, grey and white with a french style shabby chic laid back feel. We hired some beautiful long rustic trestle tables/chairs and had fresh flowers draped down the centre of each table in and amongst the platters of food. I wanted to create a very simple and natural look so we didnʼt have metres of bunting or balloons just a beautiful traditional wooden marquee with fairy lights, fresh flowers and the eclectic bits and bobs we had collected. In the lead up to the wedding I hosted ʻcrafternoon’ sessions with my close friends, where we made our own napkins, little A&T flags to go on our gold and white straws and turned old picture frames into rustic blackboards. Timʼs brother Dave spent countless hours in the run up to the wedding wiring up 2 brilliant, huge A+T circus letter lights which lit up (and almost burned down) the wooden dance floor.
The flowers were just insanely beautiful and were all grown locally in Cornwall by The Garden Gate Flower Company. Many of the flowers I had hoped to have on the day werenʼt in season so the florists worked hard to produce a beautiful array of british flowers in peaches, caramels and pinks. I had a sweeping bouquet tied with pale peach/gold natural-dyed silk ribbon by Lancaster & Cornish and packed with bearded iris, swan wing tulips, scabios, white nigella and sweet peas to name a few. The centre piece of the marquee was a blossom floral crown, suspended above the dance floor like a giant chandelier. Timʼs Mum decorated the church beautifully with a mixture of ivory stocks and ￼cow parsley in milk churns and there were some stunning large arrangements at the alter with David Austin roses.
The Wedding Party
We were really blessed that the church we go to, St Kea near Truro, is one of the most beautiful and picturesque country churches in the area. What made it even more special was that many of the congregation came to wish us well, so the church was bursting at the seams. My brother Chris travelled from Boston USA to read our favourite Bible verse (Colosians 3: 12-17) and a couple of good friends, Clare and Andy, wrote their own prayers that they read for us. I had chosen a song by Helen Jane Long which the church band learned especially for my arrival. During the signing of the register Jemima, an incredibly talented young singer from the church, performed a couple of more contemporary pieces by Ellie Goulding and Lily Allen. To celebrate with all those who werenʼt coming to the main reception, after the service we dished out homemade lemonade and Timʼs mumʼs meringue kisses.
In the afternoon, whilst we were having photos in the rain and struggling through the squall in the boat, Timʼs dad was entertaining the guests with his 6 piece jazz band, The Rob Walker Band, at the marquee. After the meal we had a local 7 piece Funk and Soul band called Love Gap, who had everyone dancing from Timʼs Godmother who was over from Australia to our 3 year old nieces and nephews.
Music, booze and food were 3 elements that we really wanted to get right. It was very important to us that our guests were able to relax into the meal and enjoy food focused around sharing. We also wanted to work with local suppliers and show off what Cornwall has to offer. We used a fantastic husband and wife team duo who run The Fire Kitchen, a fab seafood restaurant and bar in Falmouth. We talked at length about our thoughts and ideas to create a mediterranean themed buffet with charcuterie boards, scallops served in their shells and shots of dessert. The scallops were cooked in front of our guests on a little hob and served fresh to all of guests. What a spread! The food was truly divine and a real highlight of the day!
Timʼs cousin Liz took the cake making to a new level, sending samples of icing, sponge colours and ribbons from Glasgow to Cornwall to ensure the finished article was just right. Finished in fresh flowers on the day, the white iced 4 tier sponge and fruit cake was incredible.
Our day was beautifully captured by Amy Shore, a very talented journalistic photographer who specialises in automotive and has a very unique style. Amy was recommended by our florist and when I saw her website I just knew that we had to work with her. We met in Bath a few months earlier for a pre-wedding shoot and Amy made us feel so relaxed, we just laughed all day long. When we spoke about the big day Amy was quick to agree to squeezing into the tiny Morgan sports car with us and then embarking on the boat trip which would get us to the reception. She, and her assistant Liam, were an absolute delight to work with. They went above and beyond on the day, from helping me into my dress at the start, to lighting tea lights in the food tent in the evening.
Photography by Amy Shore Photography
- Bride Justin Alexander
- Boutique Vu’s Bridal
- Headband Ivory & Co. at Liberty In Love
- Shoes Kurt Geiger
- Florist The Garden Gate Flower Company
- Ribbon Lancaster & Cornish
- Chairs & Tables Virginia’s Vintage Hire
- Gold Letters Posh Graffiti
- Marquee Absolute Canvas
- Catering Fire Kitchen & Bar Falmouth
- Beer & Ale Tremethick Brewery
- Bridesmaids Dresses Ariella
- Groomsmen Trevails
- Stationery Anna Victoria
- Printers Blush Publishing
- Paperstock GFsmith Board
- Entertainment Lovegap
- Transport Perranwell Garage
- Hair Holly at No.4 Hair & Beauty