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Couple
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Car
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Flowers
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Portrait
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Sign
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Garden
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Cake
a charlie brear 1920s dress for a back garden wedding in kent with homegrown flowers and a vintage car
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Harriet & Steve

Harriet’s Charlie Brear wedding gown is sophisticated, elegant and timeless, the perfect choice of dress for a relaxed back garden affair.

The flowers were mostly homegrown, and all put together by the the brides’s mother and friends – such a talented bunch! you really need to check out the church arrangements in particular….just beautiful.

I am personally having a huge red nail moment right now and I LOVE Harriet’s choice of bright rouge, absolutely stunning against ivory crepe silk.



Harriet The Bride: I’ve never had a grand idea of how I wanted my wedding to be or dreamt about my dress, I knew I just wanted something very simple, elegant and comfortable that would not look ridiculous in a relaxed country setting.

The Fashion

I tried a number of dresses by Charlie Brear but it was about the first I tried I went back to. Dropped waist, bias cut in exquisite silk crepe it was so delightful to wear and I loved the dramatic back. I also bought a blush sash from Charlie Brear. I had tried to be thrifty and bought a cheap veil from the internet and when it arrived it looked exactly that! So the day before the wedding I was very lucky to be able to get my dream veil from Teo Cath bridal store in Canterbury, a chapel length plain veil which I think really complimented the dress.

We knew we wanted a suit Steve could wear again and he got a lovely Navy number from Tiger of Sweden bought in Selfridges. He’s wore it a few times since.

I had just one bridesmaid and so could focus on finding a dress that was 100% her. In the end my mum found a blush dress by Debut at Debenhams and just bought it on sight as she thought it was just the right colour. Luckily Katy loved it and she looked so pretty! The best man and ushers wore their own suits with no specified ties, in keeping with the relaxed feel of the day.

The Venue

Our venue was an easy choice, my mother kindly gave us use of her garden in the Kent countryside, it’s been the family home for over 30 years and it was very special and personal to be able to be married in the house I was born into.

We just wanted the everything to be simple, unfussy and elegant, a very relaxed country wedding. The beautiful stretch tent was just exquisite, chic and unobtrusive and acted as a frame to the summer­blooming greenery around. We just added lots of home­grown flowers predominantly in white and some white lanterns hanging from the canopy to break up the space, then soft lighting in the evening. It felt magical to us.

We were married in the beautiful and very old church I was Christened in just a few minutes from the house which was very special. We had two readings, one from the Song of Solomon and the second was a poem by E. E. Cummings, I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart). I think we both felt the service was the part we loved best of the whole day. It felt amazing.

The Flowers

The flowers were mostly home grown between my mother and her friend Linda who is so talented with flowers. Her and I went foraging for additional greenery the day before the wedding, which was such a lovely thing. We also bought in some flowers from a wholesaler. I was so in love with my bouquet which in addition to some herbs and plenty of pretty white flowers also featured some very pale blush pink roses, matching my sash. I also wore some in my hair. My stepmother and an army of my mum’s friends helped create the centrepieces for the tables as well as the beautiful flowers for the church. We can’t thank them all enough.

The Entertainment

We had a fantastic classical guitar as people entered the church and during the signing of the register. Oh we loved it, it sounded just terribly romantic! Then in the evening we had an amazing gypsy jazz band, who so many people commented on as being great fun. After their set finished we stayed up dancing till 5am to a good old spotify playlist!

The Food

We made the canapés ourselves which was actually quite fun and we only decided the day before what to make! The seafood starter was a gift from Steve’s cousin and was a real highlight of the day, then a cold buffet and fruit pavlova pudding which was perfect for a hot summer’s day (and helped keep costs down)…. The wine was a real mix bought in dribs and drabs over various booze cruises and supermarket deals alongside a couple of barrels of beer. Then lots of bread, cheese and chutney to soak it up as the night went on.

The Photography

Charlotte had photographed a friend’s wedding and we were so impressed by her pictures and how charming and relaxed she was. Hiring her was undoubtedly one of the best decisions we made as we are blessed with the exquisite photos she took that not only capture the day perfectly but bring all those happy feelings to life. She was just a joy to have around too.

We chose to do a lot ourselves, which meant we had a highly personal wedding which was exactly as we had hoped. Of course that also meant added stresses on the family as much as on us. However everyone agree it was really worth it. Being married at home with lots of the details homemade and very simple made the day feel like a huge fantastic house party which is just what we wanted! We chose to focus on the things that would make everyone happy: plenty of music, wine and fabulous company and the result was just so personal and fun! Our advice would be to just do as much as you can in the run up then don’t worry about the details on the day, things will work out and no matter what (rain or shine) you will have the best day of your lives! We tried to view it as a personal declaration of love followed by the best, super­fun party we’ve ever thrown and that helped take some of the stresses away.

Basically weddings are excellent, you can’t help but have fun!

Photography by Charlotte Knee Photography
Author: Charlotte O’Shea
Purveyor of short shorts. Make-up junkie. Hopes to grow old disgracefully.

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