If you are signed up to the Rock My Wedding newsletter (if you’re not you can sign up here) you will have already seen a sneak peek of this wedding. It’s a serious hug-fest and I love it. And you will too. I promise.
Chloe and Alex married on a glorious July day in 2012 and held their reception at Gate Street Barn after a ceremony at Holy Trinity Church.
Gate Street Barn was the only venue Chloe and Alex visited and they fell in love with it instantly. It’s not hard to see why. There is hop blossom hanging from the ceiling and fields full of French horn cows…all of whom are named after previous couples who have married at the barn. I know, very cool.
There’s just so much love going around at this wedding. Enjoy.
Chloe The Bride: Being only 5″2 I didn’t want anything too meringuesque and wanted something with a vintage style. I managed to secure an appointment at Jenny Packham. The 2012 collection had just arrived, it was there that I tried on the ‘Foxglove’ dress, that was when I knew I had found ‘the one’! With a 1920s style gown with sheer sleeves and sparkling embroidery, it was everything I had envisaged. By coincidence Jenny Packham was paying a store visit that day, and I was lucky enough to have a conversation with her about the dress and my wedding… I may have come across as slightly excitable!
Shoes, make-up, hair
Being a believer that less is more, I didn’t want to go too OTT whilst accessorising. I decided against a veil and settled for a vintage hair grip from a boutique in Farnham and some Jenny Packham earrings, matching the dress perfectly. It took a long time to find the perfect shoes, I wanted some height but didn’t want to be a hobbling bride, I also wanted shoes that looked vintage and matched the dress. Harriet Wilde’s shoes are gorgeous and I chose a 20’s style lace pair. I managed to last well into the night before kicking them off and dancing Joss Stone stylie.
After doing make-up for a few of my friends weddings I was confident enough to do my own, and felt that I didn’t want to look too different on the big day, however panic started to creep in and I decided to get a trial done at the MAC counter in House of Fraser. I wanted a fairly dewey natural look and was really pleased with the outcome. I revisited the counter on my wedding morning to have my make-over done. Being completely indecisive about my hair and having a couple of trials I decided to go with a messy side bun, this was done by Emma from Locks of Love who was brilliant and also did my mum’s hair on the day.
Girl After My Own Heart
Shortly after getting engaged I visited a wedding fair where I came across the lovely Bex, from Blush Florals. Her stall immediately caught my eye with it’s beautiful floral displays and vintage decorations. My mum and I visited Bex shortly after for a consultation and had great fun discussing all the bouquets and decoration. Besides the flowers Bex also provided rustic style bird cages, china wear, glassware for the sweet stall and wicker hearts for the church, this is a girl after my own heart! The flowers we had decided on consisted of peonies, cabbage roses, antique roses, lavender and some greenery. The morning of the wedding, Bex came to drop all the bouquets and button holes round to my parents house and my mother who had kept it together all morning couldn’t help but shed a tear at how gorgeous they were!
What A Hottie
Alex is the middle brother of three so it was only fair that he had two Best Men, he also had four ushers! Not to outdo him I had decided upon six bridesmaid and my three adorable (at times) nieces as the flowergirls. As brilliant as it was to have such a big wedding party it was a slight challenge when in came to dressing everyone! Luckily my sister was on hand and managed to source all three flowergirl dresses from Monsoon, matched with nude ballet shoes and flowers in their hair. The bridesmaid dresses were all from Coast. I had three bridesmaids in a pale sage colour and three in a champagne. We hadn’t been too keen to have a colour scheme and decided to use a lot of pastel colours that would tie in with the rustic, vintagey theme of the day and all the flowers. The bridesmaids teamed their dresses with nude heels and wore their hair down in loose curls with vintage roses in.
The Best Men and Ushers they hired suits from Moss Bross and we bought pastel coloured ties. Alex’s suit was made to measure from A Suit That Fits. He got to custom choose the fabric, linings, button holes etc. His tie was from Reiss and for his wedding gift I got him made some vintage map cufflinks, one with the location we had got engaged and the other of where we were getting married. He looked so handsome on the day, and I still can’t believe I’m married to such a hottie!
Shot By Diana
For our Photographer we chose the fabulous Joanna Brown. After researching many photographers online I couldn’t find one that stuck out to me, we didn’t want the photos to appear too modern or posed and as soon as I came across Jo’s website I instantly knew that we had to have her. Her style is so unique, capturing beautiful angles and details that hold a memory. She also owns a ‘Diana’ vintage camera which take the most beautiful soft focused stills. We booked her up as soon as we had the venue as I knew we wouldn’t find any one as perfect as Jo.
Being a massive cake lover, the cake was something I was happy to take full control of. Not being a fruit cake or marzipan fan, I decided on having the top tier as carrot, the middle as victoria sponge and the bottom as chocolate. I choose my friend Ellie who runs a cake business to make the cake, and she did the most beautiful cake ever, I couldn’t have been happier! So many guests after commented on how delicious it was too! The cake had pearls as decoration and fresh flowers on the top and first tier.
Baby I Love You
Alex is very into music and wanted a band from the start. We asked our friends band Rich Austin and the Maestros, who had also played a couple of our friends weddings. They were great and definitely got everyone on the dancefloor. Our first dance was ‘Baby I love you’, the Ramones version.
Packing A Punch
As a designer I took the decoration part of the wedding to heart. The pheasantry which sat next to the barn was filled with old fashioned glass bottles and jars with flowers. I also rented vintage teacups and scattered (not literally) these around containing marshmallows for the guests. Another feature of the pheasantry was the sweet stall. I bought sweet shop stripy paper bags and all guests could help themselves throughout the day to all our favourite old school sweets and chocolates, which were contained in beautiful old fashioned sweet jars and containers. I managed to find retro style popcorn boxes, which we filled up with popcorn in the evening for all the guests.
The evening also brought with it ‘Palmers Punch’ a lethal cocktail we enjoyed testing throughout the year! After searching for a vintage style glass drink dispenser I finally found one in John Lewis, along with red and white striped paper straws. We also had Jo Malone candles placed around the venue, which made everything smell amazing in the evening.
I spent many hours making up little cream card boxes with tissue paper containing heart chocolates for the girls and football chocolates for the boys, before passing over the task to my parents who made the remainder of them. I bought lots of ribbons for the boxes to be tied and luggage tags which had each guests name on. These doubled up as favours and names places. For the table plan, I found a large circular frame in a charity shop, I took out the centre, sanded, painted and replaced the backing with wallpaper, I found some small heart pegs and pegged a large luggage tag on the plan for each table. For the table names we choose to have each destination we were planning to visit on our American road trip honeymoon. I bought old 6″ vinyl records from ebay and made circular artwork for the centres using old vintage postcards from each destination. The records were displayed in small logs we had cut down and cut slits down the centres. I’m lucky enough to have a very talented graphic designer as one of my best friends…and bridesmaids. Polly created all the artwork for the menu’s, signage and the invites for me and they fitted in with the rustic, quirky vibe that we wanted for the day.
Your Day Your Way
If I could give any advice for future brides, it would be to not stress out about small details of the big day, but try to enjoy everything. Use your family and bridal party to help you out with bits and don’t do everything yourself. Try to make the day special and unique to you and your fiance and don’t get too stuck trying to please everyone else!
See, told you you’d love it!
So much attention to detail was paid to the little things that ensured Chloe and Alex’s guests had a fab day and lots of cute little ideas for you lovely lot to steal!
How gorgeous is the photography too? Check the gallery for more immense field shots of the gorgeous couple. They are to die for.
Also, as if Chloe got to meet actual Jenny Packham! Jealous much!