Hannah and Marek Married in August 2012 at Tunnels Beaches, Ilfracombe.
Marek helped Hannah choose her dress. Yep. Throwing tradition out of the window, he helped her pick the perfect finish to her dress. I quite love this. It’s a massive decision to make and I for one found it very difficult not to discuss it with Mr S so Hannah must have felt just lovely being able to share the decision with her beloved Marek. They shared every aspect of their day. They even got ready together.
Also something else we don’t see that often. There are no flowers at this wedding. Yep, you heard me right…no flowers. But I promise you you won’t be disappointed…
Finer Than Cobwebs
Hannah The Bride: I searched long and hard for a Tea-length wedding dress and was so pleased to find Candy Anthony, a Boutique on the South Bank in London. I eventually chose a simple Ivory strapless gown with the most beautiful lace overlay – finer than cobwebs! It had a four layer baby pink petticoat. My brother (who was also the best man) came with me to see the dresses at the boutique on my first visit and we chose a pink polkadot overlay. Then on my second visit, Marek came with me, he insisted upon the lace overlay, and he was right. I’m glad I took my groom with me.
Pearls And Umbrellas
There were no hair accessories for me. I wore a pearl necklace belonging to my Mum (given to her by my Grandma) and a pearl bracelet given to me by my Grandma for my 21st birthday. I also had a pink umbrella from a shop in Jermyn Street, London.
Less Is More
I had my hair and make-up done by Jai Prettejohn from The Event Studios. I wanted a soft 1940s/50’s up-do very much inspired by the beautiful Grace Kelly. I initially wasn’t going to have my make-up done because I was worried about having too much, but Jai showed me how a little bit of subtle make-up didn’t have to be too much. Jai is so lovely, she’s great fun and she made me feel completely at ease. She did everything perfectly including Marek’s very amazing quiff as well!
Wulfric And Wilbury
We didn’t plan to have a dress code or colour theme at the wedding, although there was a pink theme which somehow spread from my pink petticoat. Pink bowties, pink umbrella and pink socks from Turnbull & Astor. I actually told guests, including those in the wedding procession, to wear whatever they liked. Though I did tell them that Marek and I would be wearing 1940s/50s style attire.
Wulfric and Wilbury the Cockerpoos were wearing turquoise bow-ties (Wilbury’s favourite colour). My Maid-of–Honour Val always looks amazing (she’d look amazing in a bin bag). Val turned up wearing a funky blue and white polkadot dress and red shoes, she looked spectacular. Duncan (my male ‘bridesmaid’) was wearing a mix of highstreet buys, Carnaby shoes, and a great Trilby hat. The best man and father of the bride wore an ivory suit chosen by my mum, from John Lewis I think.
A Groom In Ivory
Marek was wearing an ivory suit which was made for him by Jenny of Custom Clothes. She lives just around the corner from us in Bookham. We really wanted a suave 1940’s waistcoat and trouser suit, and I really wanted to see him in Ivory. We told her what we envisioned and she created it for us. Marek wanted a baby pink bowtie and socks to match my petticoat.
Out Of This World
Our photographer was Helen Lisk. I had trawled through photographers umming and ahhing about the cost, not sure if it was all a bit expensive…my goodness it was worth it!
I really liked Helen’s blog; the photos really capture people in the moment, in a relaxing informal way, and also take advantage of fantastic surroundings. I had a chat with Helen on the phone and she seemed so lovely it had to be right. We met her before the wedding for a pre-wedding photo shoot, which I’m really glad we did as it gave us an idea of what to expect on the day (never having had a professional photographer follow us a round before!).
We felt totally at ease with Helen, which is why our photos are so relaxed. I can’t thank her enough for the amazing photos we have to remember our day by, they are out of this world.
A Birthday Wedding Cake
Again, I ummed and ahhed about having a cake, in the end decided we’d probably all be so full of BBQ to not have one. Then I had an idea, as it was also Marek’s birthday on the 5th August I asked his Mum to sort out a birthday cake. Which she dutifully did.
Marek made up small pink candy-stripe bags of seed bombs which at the end of the evening people tried to eat! Oh dear, I’m glad we had the cake after all!
Dancing Down The Aisle
The music at the wedding was really important to us. It took almost a year (and a fair amount of money on iTunes) to create the playlist for our wedding. We danced down the aisle to The Brian Setzer Orchestra’s ‘Here comes the Broad’, which is the most fantastic big band swing version of the traditional ‘Here comes the Bride’.
For the reception we held fast to our Rock and Roll theme with a range of swing/jitterbug/electroswing/Rock’n’Roll music from the 1930s to modern day. Cab Calloway, Fred Astaire, Will Bradley, Wynonie Harris, Elvis, Christina Aguilera (Yes, I said Christina Aguilera, she’s done some amazing swing), Electro Swing Republic, The Brian Setzer Orchestra…I could go on and on. It was a totally addictive mission to find the best music for our 40s/50s theme. Our first dance was to Christina Aguilera’s ‘Something’s Got a Hold On Me’. We love this feel good love song, which makes us want to jive every time we hear it.
For the party in the evening we had a more diverse range from old Rockers classics such as ACDC, Rolling Stones, The Travelling Wilburys, more Rock n’ Roll… Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, through to some good old pop with Michael Jackson. We finished the evening with a slow dance to Fred Astaire’s ‘The Way You Look Tonight’, it was very romantic. About half-way through the party in the evening my Dad got out his guitar and we had a family sing-song to the ‘San Francisco Bay Blues’ which is a family favourite we all love.
Marek played the harmonica solo in the middle of the song. I’m not sure what our guests thought of this, but it was good fun and we did get applause!
Setting Your Heart Free
If you ever visit Tunnels Beaches you will understand why we didn’t need to decorate. The scenery is utterly breath-taking. Even if we had been unlucky with the weather it still would have been amazing. There’s something about being in a place like that that sets your heart free. You can see this happening to all our guests in the pictures. Aside from the scenery, the venue has been designed and decorated as a wedding venue – it’s got a shabby chic coolness to it.
The day was special to Marek and I in so many ways. I’m glad we spent the whole day together; getting ready etc. We’ve been together for 5 years before getting married and we truly are best friends. I needed my best friend that morning leading up to the ceremony.
The bridal procession danced down the aisle. We kept it a strict secret and had a bridal procession including Marek’s parents, My mum and Wilbury the Cockerpoo, The best man, the Groom, Val and Dunc the bridesmaids with our little Wulfric the Cockerpoo, then myself and my Dad. Everyone danced in their own way, it was great fun. Allegedly as we came down the aisle the sun started to shine. My Dad wrote and sang us a song for his father of the Bride speech – it was AMAZING!
My mum also gave a speech. She wanted to represent me as she felt that wedding speeches always seem to focus on the groom’s, best man’s and father of the bride’s speeches. My mum’s speech was so lovely, the only one that brought a tear to my eye.
Hmm, If I could do it again I’d say a big NO to letting the best man take the groom out boozing the night before! Despite that, it was still an amazing day. It was a lot of fun dancing down the aisle – wish we had it on video though! We kept it such a big secret that no-one was prepared enough to film it! Having our Cockerpoo Wulfric with us really made the ceremony extra special. The music had a big part in creating a swinging feeling to the day. Our guests were amazing, they all came so far to be with us and we were totally overwhelmed.
Dancing down the aisle, a barbecue, dogs in bow ties oh, and did you notice Hannah and Marek got married at the beach?! See, told you you wouldn’t be disappointed. I LOVE the 4 layer petticoat of Hannah’s dress as well.It is so lush.
How amazing does the food look. I would have LOVED to have been a guest at this day. Also, double cake for wedding day and birthday?…brilliant.
I just love it. The whole thing. So relaxed, so laid back, a bit of rain, a lot of love and skimming.