We’re bringing you the prettiest wedding this morning, with an elegant and minimal ceremony at Compton Verney, followed by a bright and colourful reception in one of PapaKata’s infamous Sperry Tents. This means the best of both worlds – classic white wedding meets big party in a field. Who says you can’t have your cake and eat it?! It’s YOUR wedding day after all.
Lovely Lissy found their photographer, Emma Pilkington, right here on RMW, which always makes us happy. Talking of which, the bridesmaids blue tulle skirts are also bound to put a smile on your face, the girls all look gorgeous!
Lissy the Bride: I had a definite vision for my dress. I had fallen in love with an image I’d seen of a Paolo Sebastian ballerina style dress with a tulle skirt and an illusion beaded bodice, but I quickly realised this was far over budget. I came across Watters Wtoo dresses which have a very similar style, and I took my mum and sister along to Tilly Trotters bridal shop in Leamington to try some on. They were wonderful, relaxed and reassuring – and truly guided me through the process of choosing my dress! I fell in love with ‘Persiphone’ – with it’s tulle skirt and train, low cut back and beaded bodice. It was so perfect I was quite emotional trying it on! I wore a beaded rhinestone belt around the waist. My shoes were sparkly Kurt Geiger ankle strap stilettos and a gorgeous gold orchid chain headpiece on the back of my head. I also had to wear my Alex Monroe bee necklace that I never take off! My hair was styled into a modern chignon by the lovely Nic Nash, and natural make up by Lisa.
Ramsay wore a navy suit from Suit Direct and a waistcoat from Ted Baker. His black brogues were from Clarks and had the ‘something blue’ along the heels. He had bought initial engraved tie slides for all his groomsmen as gifts, and wore one on his tie too. His coral orange tie was from Swagger and Swoon, who had a huge range of lovely colours!
Our wedding day was definitely a reflection of our characters. I am a graphic designer and so very into my art, and Ramsay has a weakness for anything rusty – including classic cars and boats! We were married in the Adams hall at Compton Verney Art Gallery in Warwickshire which we fell in love with after seeing it’s beautiful tiled floor, high ceilings and beautiful tall windows. The gardens and lake were so romantic and beautiful we just had to book it! Our ceremony venue was Sankey Marine in Evesham. We met in school, and used to have picnics down the river on his boat most summer evenings, and we actually got engaged on such a boat picnic on our 8 year anniversary almost opposite our venue. The boat yard has a beautiful row of weeping willow trees along the river where we had a beautiful PapaKata Sperry tent put up.
We opted for a simple white and green mediterranean greenhouse feel at Compton Verney, so as to let the room speak for itself. We had lilies and fresias on the windowsills for scent, and greenery everywhere – including herb pots dotted down the sides of the aisle. We had green trees and swags of white fabric draped between the pillars at the end of the aisle. Sankey Marine was a different story as we decorated EVERYTHING in bright colours. We hung a load of paper pompoms in the tent which were pastel coloured mixed with bright popping oranges. We tied hundreds of ribbons outside in a tree in the central courtyard, and had flowers everywhere we could. Ramsay’s rusty Chevy pickup truck made an appearance as a still drinks dispenser, and an old bike served as a sign propped up by a wall. The tables were decorated with blue platters, dusty pink runners, gold cutlery and pots of herbs. Succulents served as wedding favours and place names. We collected vintage serving tableware, lemonade bottles for water and crystal tea light holders to add a bit of sparkle! We found some reclaimed shutters in an antiques yard and attached flowers and ribbons to them to stand as a photo backdrop by the tent. Everyone loved them!
Luckily for us, my mum runs The Garden Smith and so was able to purchase and arrange all the flowers by herself. She made the girls colourful bouquets of peonies, roses, hydrangeas, eucalyptus and freesias. She tied them with trailing gold ribbon that ran down the front of our dresses. Our table centrepieces were pots of green herbs, but we dotted flowers everywhere else at the venue – with floating flower heads in a bowl by the door, and huge displays of flowers in old coal scuttles by the entrance of the tent.
The Wedding Party Fashion
We had the long bridesmaids skirts made in ombre shades of steel blue, offset by nude coloured tops and sparkling rhinestone belts. They were all completely different heights so didn’t want to dress them too uniform! The very talented Amanda Heslop hand made all the skirts and even added a little train into the design! The groomsmen were in lighter steel blue ties and matching navy suits from Moss Bros with black shoes and their handmade tie slides.
I walked down the aisle with my dad and bridesmaids to the Haley Reinhart version of ‘Can’t help calling in love’, which had us choking up in the hallway outside before we even walked down the aisle! Seeing Ramsay’s face for the first time, looking at me through all our guests was definitely my favourite moment. Our vows were very emotional as we wrote them ourselves, and we really struggled to get through them! It was a Christadelphian wedding and focussed very much on God, with prayers, hymns and a personal, spiritual talk from our officiant and friend from church, Steve Jefferies. My Grandad Bryan gave a lovely bible reading, and Ramsay’s mum Cathy read a beautiful heartfelt poem that she had written for us – there wasn’t a dry eye in the room! We walked out ‘Life in Technicolor II’ by Coldplay which really gave the end of the ceremony a celebratory feel, helped along by the confetti canons we had put on the aisle side chairs – our guests showered us with sequins as we walked back down the aisle together and really got the party started!
As we got married at a boat yard, we couldn’t not arrange for a boat to take the guests on a trip up and down the river – it really went down a treat! Ramsay plays the Saxophone in a Jazz band called Second Line, who agreed to play after the first dance! They play really fun Jazz and swing tunes that got everyone dancing! Ramsay even got up and played a surprise song dedicated to me. His Dad Bruce had also written us a little song outlining the story of our relationship which he sang with the band.
Bensons Catering were a dream from start to finish. So many caterers we approached had their own set wedding menu, so it was refreshing to find someone who just mad exactly what we envisioned! We wanted the food to be informal and family style so everyone could chatting over it! We scoured the country for blue vintage platters for a year beforehand, and Bensons served rosemary lamb, roast potatoes, mustard green beans and the best halloumi I’ve ever tasted! Puddings we bought and made ourselves. Our retired postman made the three tier chocolate, red velvet and coffee cake which we decorated with flowers and little tin cars.
The lovely Emma Pilkington took the most lovely photos of our day – they really communicated the feel of the day and had a lovely natural light feel which was exactly what we were after. She helped us through the poses that we had discussed with her previously and she was wonderful – sending through a little package of beautiful stationery and the memory stick of photos. We discovered her on Rock My Wedding and immediately fell in love with her style.
We wanted to capture the day from the guests point of view – and so had a little hand held video camera passed round during the day which captured some really hilarious moments!