Every last detail of Debbie and Liam’s foliage filled winter wedding was loving sourced or created by the couple, along with a little help from family and friends…
The final result is beautiful, cohesive and elegant, never straying from the white, grey and green colour palette, which works perfectly with the dark and woody tones of The West Mill.
Debbie chose our favourite Maya dresses in charcoal grey for her bridesmaids, and don’t they look gorgeous? It’s a dark shade, particularly for weddings, but I can’t think of a dress better suited to this occasion quite frankly, it’s the perfect blend of sequin and tulle.
Images come from the lovely Grace Elizabeth. Her style is so beautiful, it’s always a pleasure to feature Grace’s work.
Debbie & Liam: We met over 13 years ago at Netherthorpe Sixth Form. We’re both from Chesterfield originally and went to university in Sheffield. Liam proposed in October 2015 on holiday in Ravello, Italy on the Amalfi coast which was beautiful. We hired a car to drive along the coast and Liam had arranged to stop at a view point called the balcony of infinity to pop the question! The view was incredible and there weren’t many people around which made the moment really special. During this time we were preparing to move to Adelaide in Australia but not before having a big leaving/engagement party with all of our friends and family to celebrate which was so much fun and made us so excited to start planning the big day!
A Foliage Filled Winter Wedding
We wanted our wedding day to be informal, fun and relaxed, celebrating with all of our friends and family together in one place. We decided quite early on that we wanted to embrace the cold by having a winter wedding at The West Mill in February. Our colour scheme was quite natural and simple, we used lots of foliage with accents of gold, green and grey.
Our main inspiration for the day was greenery and plants which we used to compliment the bare bricks and features of the venue. We served hot winter pimms and made hot chocolate spoon favours, combined with lots of candles and lanterns around the venue to enhance the wintery atmosphere.
The West Mill Wedding Venue
We chose The West Mill because it was so different to everything else we had seen and seemed perfect for our idea of a winter wedding. We had seen photos online while we were researching venues in Australia, but when we saw the place for ourselves we immediately knew we wanted to get married there. The view from the ceremony room was incredible and we thought the light from the windows would make for beautiful photos.
Our ceremony was so perfect. My dad walked me down the aisle which was incredibly emotional. He has known Liam for years and was a very special moment for us all. He helped us keep a steady pace walking down the aisle and calmed my nerves! My maid of honour, Lisa and Liam’s groomsman Sam did two lovely readings for us. It was so nice to have two of our closest friends read something special for us on our wedding day.
All of the wedding decor, stationery, signage, flowers, cake, Photo Booth etc were DIY projects and we had so much fun putting everything together! Particularly the giant wreath! It made such a statement in the ceremony room and looked amazing once hung in place covered in greenery. My friends Josie and Kate also helped make small rosemary wreaths and clay place names for all the guests which were placed on each table setting, combined with stoneware bottles collected from antique and vintage shops and placed down the centre of each table filled with greenery.
I made the stationery on photoshop. It made such a difference and we loved that everything coordinated. It was really nice to have signage around the venue that complimented our invitations, website and general greenery theme and tied everything together. They were printed by a company called printed.com and we were so happy with the quality! We used them on easels that Liam’s dad, Mick made for us and placed them around the venue to direct guests and provide information about the day e.g. order of the day, table plan etc.
Josie and I set up a workshop in my mums garage and used YouTube tutorials to teach ourselves how to put together the bouquets, button holes and greenery garlands. We ordered everything online from Triangle Nurseries and made everything ourselves the week before the wedding. We really enjoyed it and were really happy with the results. We had previously practiced bouquets etc in the months leading up to the wedding and left ourselves plenty of time to get everything done so we weren’t rushing in the last few days. We used a single white protea in each bouquet. Our main feature was a giant wreath that hung at the back of the ceremony room which we later moved to the gallery so guests could have photos taken in front of it with the polaroid cameras. The wreath was made from wicker from a very talented lady called Christine Redstone from Redstone Willows. We then covered it in foliage and hung it from the ceiling.
We were recommended the band through the West Mill and were so glad we chose them! They made our night so much fun and everyone LOVED them! We couldn’t have asked for a better band to help us celebrate. They kept everyone up and dancing all night and we had so many compliments about them.
We made our own Photo Booth by bringing our giant wreath downstairs for everyone to have photos in front of and provided two polaroid cameras for everyone to use and put into our guest book along with a message for us.
Custom Made Wedding Dress
My dress was custom made at Blushes Bridal Studio in Sheffield. Nicola and Liza at Blushes were incredible at helping me create my dream dress, we ordered fabric samples and looked through lots of photos to come up with ideas and the best design and I was thrilled with the result.
I was so happy with my dress and being able to customise it was so much fun. We added pockets so it felt more casual and was a handy place to store lip balm and my phone! The detail of the lace was incredibly detailed with lots of intricate beading. The long sleeves matched the bridesmaids dresses which was great for the cold weather and came in useful when having photos taken outside!
My shoes were from Dune. I didn’t wear much jewellery as my dress was quite detailed but was very happy with my wedding ring which we got from Etsy. I also wore a blue topaz ring of my mums which was something old, borrowed and blue.
Ruth Richmond at Studio One, Walton did mine and my five bridesmaids hair and makeup. They were amazing and made our morning really fun and relaxed. We went for a natural look with makeup and our hair was a combination of soft waves, plaits and twists so we each had something slightly different. It lasted all day without touchups!
Bridesmaids In Charcoal Grey
Liam’s suit was from Reiss. It was one of the first things we bought and we loved the dark khaki/green colour as it complimented the other outfits from the wedding party perfectly. My two nephews completely stole the show as page boys! They kept everyone entertained all day and looked so cute in khaki chinos, brown desert boots, white oxford shirts and grey waistcoats with little green bow ties.
The bridesmaid dresses were all from ASOS. They worked perfectly for the time of year as they all had long sleeves. On the morning of the wedding, I gave each of the girls some botanical styled jewellery and a hand printed, silk dressing gown that we bought from a trip to Bali.
Liams mum made the cake and it got so many compliments! We were over the moon with how it turned out and it went down very well with the guests in the evening. We went for a simple naked cake, decorated with greenery and a customized cake topper in gold with our names.
Over the past year me and some friends collected lots of old stoneware bottles and brass candle sticks from antique shops. We used them for the table decorations filled with greenery and placed down the middle of the 3 long tables. On each place setting we made rosemary wreaths and round place names that everyone could keep and take home.
We also collected lots of mismatched antique spoons to make hot chocolate spoons for guests as wedding favours. They were really fun and easy to make.
Grace Elizabeth Photo & Film did such an amazing job of capturing our wedding day. We were over the moon with our photos, as were our friends and family. They were recommended to us by a friend and when we saw their website and portfolio of work, we knew they were exactly who we wanted as our wedding photographers.
When we first met Grace and Mitch, they instantly put us at ease with their friendly, welcoming personalities and we left feeling very confident that they would produce incredible photos in their own beautiful style that we had seen and loved. They captured all the moments from our day so perfectly and we couldn’t be happier with each and every photo we received. heir wealth of knowledge and experience was apparent from our very first meeting and we are so pleased we chose them as our wedding photographers.
Food & Drink
We served hot winter pimms, beer, and a selection of gins so there was something for everyone! The gin bar went down well with pretty much everyone! Maybe a bit too well haha! We created a gin menu that we put on a table top easel which showed what garnishes went well with the different gins which everyone enjoyed. For the wedding breakfast we had Pumpkin Ravioli for starters, Pork with a cider cream sauce for main and toffee apple creme brûlée for dessert. The food went down really well with our guests and the guys at Jenkinsons were amazing at looking after everyone.
Its so hard to choose one part of the day but one of our favourite moments has to be our first dance! It felt like a huge celebration with all of our friends and family and it was so nice to see everyone dancing and having fun! We were so nervous as our chosen song was not a conventional first dance type of song but the band made it so lively and energetic and everyone joined in and made it such a fun, memorable part of the day.
Family & Friends
Our friends and family were incredible throughout the wedding planning and on the big day. They helped with everything from venue research in the early days while we were still living in Australia, to researching, making decorations, cakes, flowers, dresses etc. In the few weeks leading up to the wedding everyone pulled together to help us get everything finished without any stress! Which made the few days before the wedding so relaxed and fun. It was the perfect way to start the wedding celebrations and we can’t thank them all enough for everything they helped us to achieve.