Brace yourselves folks. Yep this morning’s wedding features sparkly golden pineapples as wedding table decor. I know. EPIC. But let’s not stop there. Can we all take a moment to appreciate the shimmering golden apples, the hanging lampshades, the horticultural table plan and THAT macaron tower. There is a plethora of inspiration to revel in so get your pinning fingers at the ready…
Steve the groom will be taking us through all the wonderful details of his wedding day at ‘Back to the Garden’ and ’The Lawns’ – both based in Norfolk. Just wait till you hear what he has to say about their amazing venues and the hoops that the owners of The Lawns jumped through to help Kerry and Steve say I do. Talk about customer service!
The Bride’s Fashion
Steve The Groom:
Kerry’s dress reflected the subtle beauty that we were attempting to achieve throughout our wedding. She always wanted something with a lace-back detail and despite an initial unsure commitment to another dress, once she found it, the Justin Alexander design was indisputably the one.
Her shoes were gold glitter from Duo and those along with the flower crown ensured that Kerry’s outfit reflected the glitter and woodland touches dotted through our day. Kerry never saw herself with a traditional hair piece and her flower crown was made-up of hand-picked flowers, put together by Florence and Flowers. The bracelet bought by the bridesmaids, her mum’s tear-drop diamond earrings and her late grandma’s gold elephant charm kept her outfit personal as well as beautiful.
The Groom’s Fashion
My outfit was all about simplicity and comfort. Chinos, shirt and a blazer is standard attire for me and I didn’t want to wear a suit that wasn’t my style and made me feel uncomfortable. My tie, bought from a flea market whilst on our trip to New York, was the extra touch to set me apart from the groomsmen.
We are so grateful to our amazing venues. After several conversations and visits to established local wedding venues we soon realised that they would neither cater for our DIY inclinations or be suitable for our fairly modest budget. What we needed was a blank canvas, we began casting our net wider and looking for some less traditional venues.
After a tip-off we went to see ‘Back to the Garden’ a café and farm shop in a converted barn in Holt, Norfolk. From our very first meeting it was clear we had found our reception venue. No idea was a problem and no request was unreasonable to co-ordinator Emma and you could tell that they were as excited to host as we were to plan the day. Whilst they had held a handful of wedding receptions in the past, they were not licensed to host the ceremony so our search went on for a licensed venue. We visited a few potential ceremony-only venues but none of them seemed right, either in style, in flexibility or in price. We realised that if there were no licensed venues that suited our needs…we were going to have to find somewhere without a license and convince them to get one. ‘Back to the Garden’ had plans to apply but not until they had developed their onsite accommodation. We searched for local buildings of interest and discovered a beautiful grade listed holiday home with expansive lawns, just 2 miles down the road from Back to the Garden fittingly called ’The Lawns’.
We contacted the owners Evgueni and Gillian tentatively suggesting that it might be a lucrative move for their business. We outlined our ideas and why we thought that there was a gap in the market for a relaxed and flexible licensed venue that would work with the couple to help achieve their vision. It didn’t take much consideration before Evgueni and Gillian agreed to apply for a license and duly jumped through the necessary hoops.
Our duo ceremony took place outside in the lawns under the picturesque tree and thankfully lovely weather and, other than a mid-ceremony reading bench collapse, everything went perfectly. Both venues catered to our every need, requirement and the occasional strange request and provided us with the perfect rustic backdrop onto which we could make our mark with personal and homemade touches
Our theme developed through the planning process, from an initial ‘Alice in Wonderland’ tea party look which was established in our pin-wheel hand painted doily invitations designed by Ruth Mary at Patchwork Family Art, we began to add pastel colours, rustic elements, gold glitter touches and the decision to dress the tables with real moss runners added a woodland feel.
The theme set Kerry free on a whirlwind of ideas, every day was another idea for a homemade and personal touch, some were a little wide of the mark, some just weren’t possible but many of them eventually helped us achieve Kerry’s vision. Some of the ideas included collecting etched glass decanters to be used as vases, adding gold glitter to glass jars and bottles to be filled with roses and used as bunting, painting the wire frames of lampshades in pastel colours to be hung from the eaves, white feathers dipped in glue and gold glitter and a table plan made of chalk paint covered pegs. The wooden topped tables were a blank canvas for Kerry’s creativity, real moss runners, complete with imbedded sea-lavender, miss-match vintage china, gold and bronze sprayed apples, etched wine glasses (painstakingly collected from trip after trip to car boot sales and charity shops), candlesticks, more decanters and gold glitter pineapple table numbers all made for a perfect backdrop to our afternoon tea.
It was important to us that our wedding was relaxed but still maintained a wow factor with individual touches of personal decoration. The things that were most important to us were having all of our family and friends together, ensuring that everyone was relaxed, comfortable and enjoying themselves and that every part of the day was something that we wanted to do, rejecting any traditions that wouldn’t have added to our day.
Many friends and family contributed to the day with their own efforts, my mum offered up some homemade booze in the form of crab-apple vodka, blackberry whiskey and sloe gin. Bridesmaid Hayley crocheted doilies, lots pitched in on the day helping with canapés (including pease pudding and stotty bread for the visiting Geordies), meaningful ceremony readings and everyone was on alert for charity shop cut glass in the build up With so much DIY, we really couldn’t have done it alone and we appreciated all of the help.
Jo from Constance Rose supplied the flowers which complimented our DIY touches and brought a beautiful natural and purposefully un-pristine feel with flowers cut on the morning of our wedding.
Leeds based band LindyPop provided pop tunes in a 20s inflected swing/jazz style to add life to the tea party and take it swinging into the night time, dancing until our sparkler send off organised by Kerry’s sister Hayley and the taxis arriving.
Homemade canapés began the feast after the ceremony. Once we had switched venues everyone enjoyed a vintage afternoon tea before a succulent hog roast and delicious pizza oven pizzas in the evening.
Lydia Stamps Photography captured our day with the most beautiful and natural shots. We didn’t want our photos to be over-posed or formal and the Lydia’s relaxed shots reflected our day perfectly. We cried looking at all of the lovely photographs, she really captured the day just as we had hoped and it was amazing to see all the bits that you miss throughout the day!