There is nothing more heart warming than reading the place in which our gorgeous couple got married is none other than the local church that has married generations of family members too. And to top it all off their tipi reception was also nestled in the family garden. The rustic decor coupled with the crips white blooms look out of this world. Not to mention all the festoon & fairy lights that lit up the garden after dark, turning the space into a truly magical place to celebrate, with the fire pits, photo booth, face painter and popcorn & candy vendors bringing an element of fun to this rustic country wedding. Everyone is full of smiles with all the loveliness of this sentimental day captured by White Stag Photography.

The Wedding

Chelsea the Bride: Me and Peter, got engaged on 7th July 2015. We then gave ourselves just over a year to plan our wedding for Saturday 20th August 2016. For the ceremony there was no question about it, it was always going to be St. Clements Church. This is where Chelsea’s parents and grandparents got married and she also got christened here, so it was very special to be able to have our wedding there too. But it is also a very beautiful church! Without knowing exactly what we wanted we spent many evenings looking at Pinterest, when I came across tipi weddings. We instantly fell in love with this idea for our reception and began searching for the best company to use. We also had the most perfect location which is the garden of Peter’s family home. The garden is amazingly beautiful with lots of flowers and a 3 big apple trees which I knew straight away would look lovely with fairy lights in! We also used 200m of warm festoon lights to really light up the garden and make the place look magical!

Colour Scheme & Decor

From this idea, I then in my head knew exactly how I wanted the whole wedding to be and look! I loved the bare, natural, shabby chic, handmade style. I knew I definitely wanted some gold sparkle in there. So I kept the colour scheme simple sticking mainly to the whites, navy, gold sparkle and hessian! This all looked beautiful in the tipis along with lots of fairylights on every wooden pole of the tipi along with handmade bunting and lots of small white mini lanterns on each table. Guests were seated on long with lime wash padded seats which looked amazing! And for each table centre Pete and his friend Tom chopped down an oak tree so we could use the wooden slices to put vases of gypsophilia on top along with a gold sparkly table number and a small white lantern! We managed to find a few big cable reels which we then used as tables; one for the wedding cake which we put a handmade hessian and white lace table runner on. (family friends Daphne and Lisa made all of our bunting, table runners and napkins for each guest! They did an amazing job!) On each place setting we gave a favour which was a handmade heart shaped lollipop filled with edible gold glitter and we had the napkins all handmade with each guests name embroided on each one in navy stitching. We also put on the tables some selfie sticks and funny faced beer mats, so people could snap away.


Having 9 bridesmaids I wanted to choose a colour that is easy to wear and flattering for most shapes! When I saw the navy bridesmaids dresses I just fell in love with them! They all wore matching gold sparkly heels and pearl stud earrings and pearl necklace. I also had 2 small flowergirls who wore handmade white tutu’s and looked totally adorable.


In the morning the whole bridal party and both mums, nan, auntie and great auntie all got on a mini bus to head to The Rye Retreat for our hair and makeup to be done. It was a really lovely way to start the morning, relaxing, enjoying some bucks fizz and strawberries. Along with a lovely head and shoulder massage and hand and arm massage whilst hair was being done! We all left her feeling a lot calmer and looking beautiful.


After trying on what felt like 100 dresses I finally set my heart on a very simple but sparkly, fitted dress, which was a very pale ivory colour, with a slight sweetheart neckline and small puddle train. As soon as I put this dress on I felt amazing and new it was the one. My nan came with me this day and we both had a little cry! And that was when I knew that this was ‘the dress’. I later took my mum and auntie with me so they could see the dress and I chose my veil, which again was very simple to match my dress with a little sparkle on the edges. I wanted to keep the whole look as simple as possibly, I wore a beautiful white gold diamond necklace which my nan and grandad brought for me and to match a lovely pair of white gold diamond earrings which my auntie bought for me.


After choosing the bridesmaids dresses I knew that I definitely wanted the groomsmen to match wearing navy suits, so after going from shop to shop trying to match up the colours with tiny samples I finally found exactly what I was looking for! And to compliment the navy suits they wore brown brouges and a mint green tie. Then groomsmen also wore matching socks which said groom, usher, best man etc and also matching cufflinks which where handmade using the ends of a cartridge shotgun shell saying winchester which is our surname (peter and his family shoot so was very apt).


When it came to choosing the flowers I already knew that I wanted to keep these as plain and neutral as possible so I kept with the pale colours of white roses, eucalyptus leaves and gypsophilia which I love! We were so honoured to have peters Auntie Ginger arrange all flowers for us and she also made our cake which again we kept as simple as possible, with different layers of fruit, lemon sponge and chocolate!


For the food we used a company called All Season’s Catering we were so pleased with how the food all turned out, we had champage and canapes for all the guests when arriving, we then sat down to a three course meal. For starters we had a trio of duck and orange pate on toast, melon fans and smoked salmon. For main we had chicken breast wrapped in parma ham stuffed with pesto and mozzarella covered in a creamy cheesy sauce served with new potatoes and vegetables and for dessert we had a trio again of chocolate brownie, lemon cheesecake with a fresh strawberry on top and a crème brule. Followed by coffee and mints. For the evening guests we served a hog roast with different types of bread and wedding cake for dessert.


As the evening approached we had a childrens entertainer arrive who did lots of dancing and singing, facepainting and dress up the children all loved this and so did some adults but meant the mums and dads could enjoy themselves. We also had a candy floss and popcorn lady come to serve the guests some sweet treats everybody loved this and also kept the children more than happy. I knew I definitely wanted a photo booth but didn’t want the normal traditional booths but when looking around we found the perfect taxi booth covered in pink roses and we knew this was perfect! For the music we knew that we definitely wanted a live band! We decided to use the rockitmen who literally made the evening! Everybody was up dancing all night! Very good entertainment!


For our photographer we used White Stag Wedding Photography. We are so so so happy with our photographs! So natural and literally tell the story of the day! And for the videographer we used David Findlay – which we are also very pleased with, is so nice to sit down and be taken back to that moment!

Final Thoughts

We both did the planning of our wedding ourselves, from making the invitations and order of service down to decorating and laying the tables the day before. We wanted to make sure everything was perfect just as we wanted it! We had the most amazing day and wouldn’t change a thing! But we couldn’t have done it without the help from our family and friends, who, leading up to the wedding, were there every day ensuring everything looked exactly as we had hoped! We then went on our honeymoon the following morning to Mauritius which was paradise! A lovely way to relax as husband and wife after all the wedding organising! in-post-rmw-reader-survey
Lorna Shaw

Written by Lorna Shaw

Videographer: David Findlay Video Filming | Bridal Boutique: Isabelle Grace Bridal | Bridesmaid Dresses: Beautiful Brides of Hastings | Groomsmen Suits: Sussex Suit Hire | Tipi: The Natural Tent Company | Catering: All Season Catering | Band: Rocktimen | Children's Entertainer: Little Pip's Parties | Photo Booth: Coco Photo Booths | Popcorn & Candy Floss: Candy Kent | Handmade Favours: Willow and Boo | Transport: Empress Coaches | Rambler Coaches | Brides Jewellery: F Chambers Ltd

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