Planning Punts, Pies and Poms… Part 2

Welcome back and consider today’s wedding your daily dose of sunshine. Perfect for planning week this bride created stunning DIY decor and the reception food, entertainment and vibe were exactly what they wanted. A real ‘their day their way‘ wedding mixing traditional elements with a relaxed bohemian reception.


Relaxed Photography

Our photographer was Simon Carr.

We knew that Simon was the ideal photographer for us as soon as we sat down with him for a chat and saw some of his previous albums which were incredible. We loved his relaxed and natural style and his stunning photos really reflect the atmosphere of the day.

Neither Andrew or I like being in front of a camera, and he managed to put us both at ease. Needless to say, we absolutely love the results.

Flower Fabulous

The chapel itself didn’t really need decorating, so we opted for a single large statement arrangement near the altar.

For the marquee, we used a mix of soft flowers in shades picked out from the fabric that we used for the napkins and bunting, all arranged in jam jars that we collected (or pinched from our neighbours’ recycling boxes) over the months leading up to the wedding.

Although I knew roughly what I wanted for the marquee, our florist, Jamie Aston, really brought those ideas to life and they surpassed my expectations on the day.

Custom Cake

Andrew’s mum made our delicious cake, which was inspired by one we found in a book by Lindy Smith. The layers were lemon, carrot and chocolate sponge, so there was something for everyone.

The cake topper was custom made for us by Hillary from “Bunny With a Tool Belt” on Etsy, and is now a lovely memento of the day.

Giving Favours

We were inspired by previous weddings that we’d been to to make a contribution to a charity as part of the day. We opted for Oxfam Unwrapped wedding favours which let us give each guest something worthwhile, and to some extent to match a gift to the guest.

Lantern Lovely

One thing we realised about having a marquee is that it involves a lot of extra work. We were there for most of the day before and after the wedding, and only got everything ready with the help of our amazing friends, family and suppliers.

We opted for a traditional canvas marquee from Simpers, which set the tone for a more rustic style for the reception. We picked up on this by keeping the tables fairly plain, using plain muslin which we folded to create simple table runners – very affordable compared to hiring linen. We decided to use yellow alongside the green for the reception, and I found Heather Bailey’s ‘Pop Garden’ fabric range which I used to sew bunting and napkins for each guest using all of the different designs rather than trying to be too co-ordinated.

Our main decoration came from coloured paper lanterns and poms which we strung across the marquee. My thanks go to Rock My Wedding and Jung Lee’s fantastic book for those ideas. I’ve got our friends to thank for how well they turned out though, as we had to dash to our rehearsal and leave them to hang them!

As it was mid-summer, we didn’t need to worry too much about lighting, but for the evening we used a mix of mercurised glass candlesticks, tea lights and tiny LEDs in a few of the paper lanterns that we suspended from the ceiling to offset four uplights in each of the marquee corners. The path from the marquee to the gate was lit with candles in paper bags which looked so pretty after dark.

As a conversation starter we created mini play-doh games inspired by the board game Rapidough. We stuck a little sticker inside the lid of each pot of play-doh with a couple of modelling challenges written on each one. Unfortunately the pen rubbed off a few resulting in a “fetish penguin” among others! The best model of the day was an immaculately modelled computer with keyboard, mouse and all.

Instead of place cards, we made created tags which we hung from the chairs with ribbon. Our guests had a choice of meal, so we rubber-stamped a picture on each tag to remind our guests of their pie choice.

Food and Games

Instead of the standard wedding breakfast fare, our caterers were Pieminister Pies. Pieminister is an institution in Bristol, where we live, so it was great to have them come all of the way to Cambridge. We were able to give our guests the choice of four delicious pies which were served with mash, peas and ‘groovy’. We didn’t worry about starters, and instead opted for substantial canapes, which were all sourced from independent suppliers, including the amazing ‘bread egg boxes’. Pieminister’s team went above and beyond to make sure that the whole evening ran smoothly.

We set up a volleyball net which was incredibly popular after dinner and meant that lots of our guests could get involved in the same game.

We also booked the brilliant band Happy Hour, who got everyone on the dance floor once the sun had gone down. I can’t recommend them more highly.

They also learned “A Crazy Little Thing Called Love” for our first dance – Andrew and I went to some swing dance classes before the wedding so that we had a few moves, although I hadn’t really anticipated how difficult it would be to dance in such a full skirt!

Advice from a Bride

So, my only advice would be not to worry about keeping everything too themed or matching and simply do what feels right at the time. Also, enjoy planning all those little details – you’ll miss it when it’s all done!

Photographer – Simon Carr

Ceremony – Trinity College, Cambridge

Marquee – Simpers

Cake Topper – Bunny with a tool belt on Etsy.

Pies – Pieminster, Bristol.

Canape Boxes – The Thoughtful Bread Company

Band – Happy hour

Poms – DIY (Pom tutorial on Rock My Wedding here.)

Gorgeous, gorgeous marquee. I’ve got a real thing for hanging decor at weddings – it’s so effective and pretty and this zingy colour palette just makes summer jump of the page right at you.

Are you making poms or using hanging decor in your planning?

Yours Truly,


Author: Becky Sappor
Becky is at her happiest when dunking a slightly chilled chocolate digestive into a very warm, very milky cup of tea. She also loves her job and pinches herself every day to make sure that she isn’t in a graphic design dreamworld.

46 thoughts on “Planning Punts, Pies and Poms… Part 2

  1. Oh so pretty! Just what I need to start a rather grey January day. Where did they get the lovely cream luggage tags & rubber stamps they used from? I’d love to do something like that! Another DIY project to add to the long long list…x

  2. Well I must say, I wasn’t expecting this as part 2 from yesterdays post, but this is a sure sign that you can have a traditional wedding in a totally unique way.

    This is absolutely stunning. The colours, the relaxed feel and the happy couple all look sublime.

    What a beautiful wedding!

    Absolutely gorgeous and completely personal!
    Top marks!

  3. The bride reminds me of Grace Kelly in the first 2 pics.
    And woohoo for Pieminister Pies (bloomin lovely they are), how awesome that they did the catering for this big day, which has thoroughly cheered me up on this dreary grey morning. xoxo

  4. Erm, right now I want to eat a Pieminster pie with a yellow and green napkin, play with Playdoh, and be flanked by pom poms.

    Not too much to ask is it?!

    Gorgeous wedding. Adore the colour palette, the blooms and the Unwrapped…and the looming University backdrop. Congratulations to you both! x

  5. I would SO use lime and yellow as colours if I were getting married in Spring, say, rather than November – so fresh, zingy and joyous.

  6. right, if you want me, I’ll be mostly looking at these pictures and stealing ideas left right and centre.

    over and out x x x

  7. Yey for jam jars! Next recycling day, you will see me looking in every box down my street!

    All of these decorations just work and the reason is because they liked them and they’re personal. That’s the best theme there is :o)

    Also, can I please have some bread in an egg box? xx

  8. Even better than I hoped for 🙂 I love this wedding, it is just so gorgeous to look at and filled with pretty- we are doing poms and lantern from the beams on the ceiling of our reception room too, but I love the light lemon n lime palette here- also, the pies and robust canapes are genius! I originally wanted a relaxed marquee reception but Mr Lucy insisted he wanted inside in case it rained 🙁

    How many pom poms did you make in total??!!

    I also love the Oxfam gift list.. definitely one to consider xx

  9. Wow that cake? I want it! I cant believe your mum made it! Is she a pro cake maker cos that looks divine!!
    Beautiful decorations and so bright and fresh!

  10. Sorry ladies, I’ve been trying to post all morning along the lines of Jamie Aston I am so jealous and green with envy. There is nothing I don’t love but its not been working.

  11. I can’t stop smiling this morning from all of your amazing comments, thank you so much!!! :”> Anna K, your comment really made me giggle :o)

    Lucy and RHJ – Good luck with the pom poms! They are so easy, but take lots of time to open up before you hang them. We did about 80, and it took Andy and I a good couple of hours while we watched the marquee go up! Oh, and Lucy – we lived in fear of rain for months, so Mr Lucy had a v. good point!

    Catherine – the tags were from, and the rubber stamps were collected as and when we saw them but is worth a look – the people there were really helpful when we were trying to find a fish stamp. We couldn’t find a vegetable stamp anywhere (hence the little girl stamp for the Heidi vegetarian pie!) but you could try etsy for customised stamp makers. The ribbon came from a little shop near me in Bristol – if you were desperate I’m sure I could get some for you.

    Alex84 – We were so lucky with the cake – Andy’s mum does make quite a number of wedding cakes and could easily be a pro!

    Rebecca – Jamie Aston was a bit of an indulgence, and only possible after finding a substantial discount voucher in a wedding magazine! The other florists we spoke to just didn’t seem to get what I was after even though I took a heap of pictures with me.

  12. Jenny, thanks so much for replying- it is so good of you to be so generous with your tips as well as your beautiful photographs! I’ve made 10 of our poms so far, then realised how big they are and have nowhere to store them!!! Doing them for pew ends too, as they are so cute and easy to make 🙂 Just hope they look as good in our indigo/raspberry theme as yours do- they look so light and fresh, a bit worried about the darker ish colours now….

    What date did you get married lovely? Or what month? the weather looks amaaazing, definitely a risk worth taking xx

  13. Fantastic! This is exactly how I pictured our marquee for our July wedding!! Long tables, fabric runners, jam-jars of flowers, pom-poms and lanterns from the roof – just perfect! Now, if I can just get my dear man to stop being so stubborn about having round tables…

  14. beautiful beautiful!
    where did you hire the chairs from if you dont mind me asking?
    all looks fantastic,
    huge congratulations

  15. Hi Lucy! Wow, that’s going to be a lot of poms, they’ll be so pretty though. Indigo and raspberry sound stunning and not dark at all, especially as the tissue paper lets lots of light through. You could always mix in a white or a paler shade if you did feel they were too dark though. The wedding was in July last year, and we had pretty much the hottest day of the year (the torrential rain came two days later) – we were so very lucky.

    BB – I couldn’t make up my mind about tables at first, but then realised that large round tables often make it difficult to talk to more than the person on either side anyway. Jung Lee’s lovely wedding planning book ‘Fete’ had loads of tips about using long tables and keeping them a certain width (3’6″”) to make sure they’re comfortable to talk across and still have room in the middle for decorations etc. It seemed to work for us.

    Caro – If you do the playdoh thing, use a permanent pen and not a felt tip like we did!!!

    Best of luck with your plans ladies! Jx

  16. Hurrah! A lovely pieminister wedding… Jenny emailed me first thing to let me know and we can’t stop looking at the gorgous pictures!

    It was such a beautiful day; Jenny had so many brilliant ideas and the whole thing just worked wonderfully.

    The little bread egg boxes are brilliant as a canape and can be custom stamped for you.

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous!

  17. Fab, thank you so much for the tips Jenny – I’ll check out the websites. What’s the name of the shop in Bristol? – I’ve got friends there so may send them investigating (so nice of you to offer to help, thank you!) Also it makes me feel like I haven’t gone totally insane with all my DIY ideas when you managed to pull so many off so beautifully. A comfort. C x

  18. Hi Jenny – LOVE the colours etc… I’m gettting married in six week and our colours are yellow, green and grey so stumbling across this was bizarre – we are even having jam jars on the tables and have made table runners and bunting! Too funny! I just wondered – where did you buy your lanterns from OR are you interested in selling any of them? Well done on everything – looked amazing! Cheers, Kate x

  19. Hi Catherine, I’m not sure what it’s called but if you let your friends know it’s in St Nicholas Market they’ll be able to track it down. jx

  20. Hi Kate,

    Not sure if you’ll get this, but yes, we still have most of the lanterns and would be happy to sell them on – I’m Jennifer Gibson on Facebook if you want to message me there. Alternatively, I bought them from Love the idea of grey with the yellow and green.


  21. Hi, this is actually really similar to the wedding I’m planning – it’s just a look that works really well. Love the idea of the pies, and thanks for the link to the paper lantern website.

    Thought for RMW – perhaps we could have a board where this sort of thing is sold, as well as dresses? People work very hard on DIYs and buy large quantities of items for decoration, there must be some overlap between wedding where they could be reused.

  22. Love your beautiful style, I really want pieminister for my wedding but am puzzled as to what to do as evening food. Did you do anything in the evening?

  23. Hi Charlie,

    I was just having a quick look back at this and saw your question – the pies are really filling so we just had cheese (which we supplied) and cake in the evening. It seemed to keep everyone going until 2/3am!

    I really would recommend Pieminister they really were incredibly helpful and organised and nothing was too much trouble (including unblocking the loos which I didn’t know about at all until much later).

    Good luck with all of your plans, Jx

  24. Jenny your wedding is absolutely stunning, every single little detail! I’m in the early stages of planning my Cambridge wedding and was wondering how you went about using Granchester Meadows for your reception? My fiance actually proposed to me on the meadow, so it would be more than perfect to have our reception there too! x

  25. Hi Jenny and Natalie – my sister is getting married and would absolutely love her reception to be in a marquee on Grantchester Meadows! I guess my question is the same as Natalie’s; do you have to have special permission to have a marquee there? x

    1. Hi Kirsty, I’m sorry to tell you this but there is basically zero chance of your sister getting permission to have her wedding on the meadows (do it without permission at your peril). I spent months at the beginning of my planning investigating and it is a total no go. There were two companies who owned small parts of the meadows who did weddings but both stopped in 2010. Apart from that the whole of the meadows are owned by one of the Cambridge Colleges (Kings or Trinity) and they are VERY territorrial, simply put, pigs will fly before they will even give you the time of day. I feel horrible dashing your hopes like this, but on the other hand, at least you wont waste months going round in circles and getting increasingly frustrated like I did!! xx

  26. Hi Kirsty & Natalie, I’m so sorry to hear that you can’t have a marquee at the meadow any more. We went through the Trumpington Estate who own the hedged piece of meadow next to the Orchard Tea Rooms, but I can see that their website no longer includes wedding details. We were subject to quite a few restrictions due to previous complaints from properties next to the meadow, so perhaps they won the day in the end.

    I believe it’s King’s College that owns the majority of the meadows and it may well be worth getting in touch with them, but there are cattle grazing on much of the land so it might not be possible. You might want to try getting in touch with these people though, to see if they still operate on the Meadows:, or even get in touch with the people running the Grantchester Fair in the summer, to see if they can give you a contact for getting permission. As a final thought, you could contact the Highfield Event Group ( who supplied our marquee, as they had a lot of local contacts and might be able to help you. Best of luck! Jenny

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