Country pubs, delicious pork pie and cheese towers coupled with organic blooms and vintage penguin book stationery; this is about as relaxed and utterly fabulous as it gets for a laid back wedding in the Ribble Valley. Plus the fashion is utterly divine too.
Bride Lorna wears a stunning Halfpenny London Thea gown with lace Berry jacket. There’s something so timeless about Kate’s gowns as well as stylish to boot that we’ll never tire of here at Rock My towers. Lorna completes her look with a Britten headpiece and Charlotte Mills Andi gold shoes, which are equally fabulous, and I wouldn’t mind for my very own. Now onto Groom Laurence, who looks incredibly dapper in a contrasting trousers and jacket combo; together this gorgeous couple not only look stunning, but suit the organic country vibes of their wedding perfectly.
Rachel Joyce was behind the lens capturing all the delicious details, emotion and love, so get yourself comfortable and prepare to be wowed.
Lorna The Bride: We met at Drama School (The Bristol Old Vic Theatre School) in 2009 and quickly became friends due to our shared sense of humour. Laurence proposed back in Bristol almost 7 years later! We wanted a very homely feel; using British (ideally local) suppliers. We wanted the day to have a very lived in, botanical feel and for the guests to feel that they had full bellies, slightly merry heads and like they had been given a big, warm hug from us.
I knew that I wanted something simple and timeless but not a typical ‘wedding dress’. I was scouring the internet (with bleary eyes) at 2am one morning and came across Halfpenny London. I booked an appointment the next day and I knew I would end up in one of her dresses. Kate Halfpenny’s designs are simply beautiful and somehow make you look like ‘you’ and yet you still feel like a princess! The movement of the ivory satin on the Thea dress is to die for and the delicate French lace of the Berry Jacket was perfect for a fresh, Spring wedding. I finished this look off with one of Kate’s flowing tulle veils and a Britten headpiece which was just divine –such beautifully hand-crafted designs. My Mum and Dad gifted me a silver Tiffany Bracelet (ever since I was a little girl I lusted after that little blue Box- so this was a very special gift).
Laurence wanted a rustic look but with a clean, modern edge. We both worked for Ted Baker whilst living in London, so it felt wrong not to have at least something from Ted! His Jacket and waistcoat were from his 2016 collection and we loved the slight herringbone running through the weave. His mismatched chinos were Paul Smith as were his shoes and crisp shirt. His light blue Burberry tie was the first thing I bought for the wedding and I love him in it.
The Wedding Party
The Bridesmaids wore the beautiful corn flower blue Azaelea Dress from Self Portrait. We wanted to deviate from the colour scheme to avoid being too orchestrated. They also doubled as my something blue! They all looked so beautiful and summery. My baby niece, wore a little white cotton dress with a cornflower blue cardigan from Mamas and Papas; she looked adorable!
The Inn at Whitewell, Forest of Bowland, Lancashire
The venue was an easy choice. Laurence’s Mum, Paula and his step father, Graham, held their reception at The Inn at Whitewell around 5 years ago and I remember us both falling in love with the views and the relaxed, pub atmosphere. It is a beautiful, old fashioned rural inn, nestled within rolling hills of the trough of Bowland. The views are breath-taking and you really do feel like you have retreated from everything. The ceremony took place just down the lane at the 18th century St Michael’s Church. We sadly lost Laurence’s Mum, Paula, a few years ago and we wanted to celebrate her life-she truly was an amazing, bubbly woman. What better place to get married than the place where she was at her happiest! It really felt like she was with us.
The flowers were a huge part of the day and one of the most important aspects for me. I wanted the flowers to be as lush and herbaceous as possible and punctuated with crisp white Ranunculus. We wanted it to look very organic- as if they had been collected for a botanical study. I love how the ranunculus looked like they had been crafted out of paper; so unique and romantic and popped stunningly against the varying shades of green. Our names are both derivate of ‘olive’; so we had masses of olive leaf, bay and rosemary running through the bouquets, centrepieces, buttonholes and arrangements. The Church and the inn smelt amazing!
We wanted the venue to take centre stage; and to be honest when you have a venue as wonderful as The Inn at Whitewell you really don’t have to do much more! The theme and table names were pubs and restaurants that we and our families love. Since we have also both worked in pubs it just felt very us. The colour palette encompassed greenery and fresh white with accents of gold and honey-hued wood. We wanted a rustic country pub look with a dash of elegance. For the centre pieces we used small white milk jugs that I had accented with gold lacquer just around the rim. The lush green and cotton-white ranunculus looked lovely in them! This arrangement sat on a wooden paddle board where locally sourced bread from Deerstones Bakery sat which was studded with rosemary and thyme. The rest of the table was bright, clean white so the mixture of wood, gold and green really popped. This was accompanied by a mini chalk board bearing the names of some of our favourite pubs. Candlelight from a few simple votives added elegance.
The table plan was a series of dark real ale bottles with luggage tags for the guest names. These were filled with the white ranunculus. The card and guestbook table was again very simple with pops of gold from the photo frames and fragrant rosemary in a large white pot. The guest book was a large Penguin dictionary (which tied in with our Penguin book stationery) in which guests could circle and comment on words that they felt were applicable to us. We wanted something a bit different to a normal guest book and as I’m going back to University in September, I thought that this might also be a useful memento!
The cheese and pork pie table again was very simple and clean to let the food shine! Our Fine Cheese Company Cake looked lovely adorned with grapes and rosemary Sprigs and two little wooden mice that I found in South London. Wooden crates were used to display the crackers and an array of Chutneys.
For the church ceremony, we had the 2nd Rossendale Scout Group Band playing for us from the Gallery. Laurence’s step father is the arranger and conductor and it was so special to have them there! Singing our chosen hymns along with the silver band was incredible and so special. We were played out of the church with 500 Miles by the Proclaimers; everyone was smiling and the atmosphere was incredible.
For our First Dance, our good friend from Drama School Gavin (who plays with Charlotte Church’s band Pop Dungeon) treated us to his own arrangement of La Vie en Rose on acoustic guitar- this was a magical moment.
For the evening entertainment, we had Burnley band Ofay playing for us. The atmosphere they created was incredible. The brass section of the band echoed through the inn and people were poking there head in from the restaurant at the Inn to see who were playing: they were that good. Soulful, talented and an amazing, floor-filling set.
Confit Duck with fine beans and hazelnuts with a rosemary and thyme artisan loaf
Roast Goosnargh Chicken with a smoked bacon potato cake, spring veg, parsnip puree and a red wine jus
Whitewell Sticky Toffee Pudding
Coffee and Shortbread
‘Georgina’ Cheese cake from Fine Cheese Company: Kirkham’s Lancashire, Colston Bassett, Waterloo, Baron Bigod and Doorstone. Fine Cheese Company crackers and chutneys.
Wilsons Giant Pork pies and pickled shallots
Rachel and Matthew were amazing the entire day! Rachel was with me through all the bridal prep and it honestly felt like having another friend in the room- such a calming influence. She really captured the mood and joy of the day and all the guests commented on how fun they both were!
Don’t be scared to do your own make-up if that’s what you want. I saw people’s faces of absolute horror when I explained I was doing my own make-up! I love make-up and I love the process of getting dolled up- for me it’s the best part of an event; so, my wedding day was going to be no exception. As long as you practice and use products you trust (for me Chanel, MAC and Benefit) you will be fine and it really helped calm me down!
Try to take time out for yourself. I took myself away from the party for about 10 minutes. I disappeared to our beautiful room at the inn and gazed out across the hills; I just took a moment to breathe and bask in it. I will always remember that bit.
Photography by Rachel Joyce Photography
- Dress Designer Halfpenny London – Thea Dress & Berry Jacket
- Bridal Shoes Charlotte Mills – Andi
- Headpiece Britten – India
- Jewellery Tiffany Paloma Olive Bracelet
- Hair Stylist Genesis
- Makeup Chanel
- Venue The Inn at Whitewell
- Florist The Flower Farm
- Cheese Cake Tower The Fine Cheese Company
- Pork Pie Tower Wilson Giant Pork Pies
- Rosemary and Thyme Artisan Loaves Deerstones Bakery
- Stationery Feel Food Invites
- Entertainment 2nd Rossendale Scouts
- Bridesmaid Dress Self Portrait – Azaelea
- Grooms Jacket & Waistcoat Ted Baker
- Trousers, Shirt, Shoes Paul Smith
- Groom Tie Burberry
- Groomsmen Ties ASOS