The bank holiday weekend deserves a weekend long wedding, and this relaxed do at Fforest is guaranteed to put a smile on your face. From bride Emily's infectious smile and kind spirit radiating from each image captured by O&C Photography, to her absolutely stunning bouquet and flower crown. I literally can't stop ogling all the blooms and happiness, so I've included copious of pictures for you to swoon over too.
The DressEmily the Bride: Knowing that I didn’t want a strapless dress covered in ‘bling’ I head to the local bridal boutiques with my mum. We visited two boutiques before arriving at ‘White Bride’ in Narberth. I first met Sally the owner during a week where all of the other parts to planning the wedding weren’t going so well. I was getting myself all worked up over nothing (I know this now) and meeting her was probably the best thing I could have done. She has a different approach to her work than the other bridal shop owners – I can’t really explain it – you’ll have to go yourself! I knew from the moment that I saw the dress that it was something special although it was strapless and highly beaded!!! I tried on a few other dresses before Sally laced me into my dress. I’ve never felt so beautiful and special – It made me cry so we all knew that it must be the one. I am the luckiest girl in the world! The dress had chosen me! Moral of the story – have ideas in your head before visiting the boutiques but don’t be afraid to throw them all out the window and try on a range of styles. You may be surprised!!
JewelleryAs the dress is so unbelievably beautiful – highly decorated with beads and lace - I felt that I didn’t want or need much. I found an amazing maker from Israel on Etsy who makes the daintiest jewellery using gold, tiny pearls and stones which I felt would be perfect!
ShawlsI chose two – a light pashmina for the day and a vintage fur for the evening just to chase away the chill but we were so lucky with the weather that I ended up using the pashmina to stop my shoulders from burning!
ShoesMy shoes were by Chie Mihara – I knew that I wanted to be completely comfortable with a sturdy heel - I never thought of another designer.
Flower CrownI love flowers – especially peonies and succulents. We grow so many varieties at home and I knew that I wanted to incorporate them somehow. I always knew that I wanted a flower crown. I was a little apprehensive though – It’s such a huge part of your outfit and I wasn’t sure how it would all look together. I was worried that the flowers would either be too big or too small but when I saw it I knew that it was better than I could have ever imagined!!!
Grooms FashionEmily the Bride: I never envisioned getting married in formal attire and I thought that a textured cloth would suit an outdoor wedding. I also wanted to buy something that I could wear again even if it was individual garments at a time. After an extensive period of visiting different shops I came across a Remus Oumos jacket that fitted perfectly. Soon after, I encounter a shop, Hatts Vintage Emporium. Where a charismatic father and son team, hand produce wonderful waistcoats. I visited their shop a number of times and bought two waistcoats from them. The swooping waistcoat was my favourite item of the wedding attire. The trousers are from Ted Baker. Dr Marten shoes to ensure I have firm footing on a very exciting day. The wedding attire was topped off with a tie from Mrs. Bowtie and complemented with the pocket square that Emily skilfully made. The general concept applied to the groomsmen and they wore similar but mis-matched garments allowing them to depict their personalities.
VenueEmily the Bride: Jeff has family spread out all over so the main point for us was to have everybody together for as long a time as possible and eliminate the ‘moving around’ that we find ourselves doing for more traditional weddings. (From church to reception to accommodation). Neither of us are particularly religious – What we wanted most of all was for the special people in our lives to come together and have a party. It was through Sally at ‘White Bride’ that I found out about Fforest, We then searched their website and went to look around later that week. Fforest offer you the whole camp for the weekend. It was so chilled and easy going – The sun was shining and the blue bells were out – I fell in love and knew that it was perfect! They gave us a list of available weekends and we booked! There is a huge range of accommodation for your guests (most of which are glamping), several areas where you can legally be married, a tepee for humanist celebrations and for bands and dancing, fire pits, a pub selling local ales and a large barn for food. It has everything allowing guests to stay Friday to Sunday (or longer if they wish). The only thing that we and I’m sure all of our guests were concerned about was the weather. It is Wales after all!
Our WeekendSo the majority of guests arrived at Fforest on the Friday night. Jeff and I had made survival kits for our guests – we appreciated that not everyone was comfortable camping and wanted to show them our thanks. We were however, so unbelievably lucky. The weather for the entire weekend was gorgeous not a rain cloud in sight! That night the amazing staff made us soup and cooked pizza’s in their outdoor pizza oven. We were entertained by a duo called ‘Honey Fungus’ and we celebrated birthdays with giant black forest gateaux’s. The pub was made to close by midnight to ensure that everyone was alive the next morning. Saturday started at 7am with yoga and then while the girls drank fizz, ate cake and got ready the guys had a football match.
The WeddingIt was important for us to make our guests feel comfortable and a part of the proceedings. Lindsey, our humanist celebrant helped us to create an informal environment of joy, laughter and happy tears. We wrote our own vows and had heart felt readings from our mothers. The best man even played an acoustic version of ‘is this love’ by Bob Marley. After, The Gold Ring Duo played while our guests blew bubbles, ate canapes and drank fizz in the sunshine. We did not want a table plan and wanted to encourage new people to meet so we composed a questionnaire full of humours questions to be answered by the person sitting opposite. This included a portrait – it got people talking to ‘strangers’ eliminated awkward silences and now we have brilliant caricatures of all of our guests! Jeff and I were legally married that afternoon in the Bwthyn with just our immediate family but as we left we realised that all of our guests had gathered around the entrance to cheer and blow bubbles – it was one of our favourite moments! In the evening there was a hog roast ate around fire pits whilst a fantastic 6 piece swing band played and then later on funky beats played by local DJ and friend, Joe Shaw. The night finished up in the pub with Vodka shots and cigars. It could not have been better. Everyone was treated to a BBQ breakfast on the Sunday before we said our goodbyes. With everyone saying – let’s do this again same time, next year!
FlowersWe were lucky to find a florist literally 5 minutes from Fforest. Jen is amazing. She is so creative but also so easy going her work was perfect for our ceremony.
Wedding party fashionWhat mattered most to us was that everyone felt comfortable and super duper awesome for the day. That was the only real guideline. Other than that they were free to wear what they liked! For the guys we bought in the ties later to literally tie everything together!
PhotographersWe first encountered O&C Photography at a friend’s wedding and we really admired their work. We were ecstatic when we came across them at a wedding fair. It didn’t take long for us to realise how like-minded they were to us and most of our friends. It was an important factor because we wanted the photographers to fit in and for everyone to feel at ease in their company, so as to achieve natural photographs. At the wedding fair, their presentation books and photographs indicated that they are talented artists and their work blew us away. On the day it felt like they were long standing friends. The photographs of our wedding exceed any expectations that we ever had, they really captured how the day developed and the images are absolutely stunning.
Special MentionsTo: Miguel Ruiz Flynn (best man,) for a phenomenal speech and for singing in front of all the guests and Katy Davies (Bridesmaid) for all her hard work and her insane party planning ability.
Dress Designer: Annasul Y - Peony | Bridal Boutique: White Bride | Jewellery: Etsy - Ravit Schwartz | Bridal Shoes: Chie Mihara | Bridal Hair: Ava Marie Hair & Beauty | Makeup Artist: Delwedd Beauty Salon | Bridesmaid Dress: Coast Stores | Flower Girl Dress: Monsoon | Groom Suit: Hatts Emporium | Grooms Trousers: Ted Baker | Grooms Shoes: Dr Martens | Ties: Mrs Bow Tie | Venue: Fforest | Cold at Night | Florist: Florist on the Farm | Cake: Cake Carousel | Entertainment: Honey Fungus | The Gold Ring Duo | The Hot Shoes Swing Band | DJ Joe Shaw