Rebbie the Bride:
On a cold rainy day in April my Mum and I stepped into a rundown sheep barn nestled at the bottom of the South Downs, as pulled my coat tightly around myself, Mum reminded me to “have vision” and at that point I thought...oh lord! A couple of months later I took Sam to see the proposed venue and in contrast to my previous visit the sun shone brightly for us and we were greeted with a view that literally took both Sam & I’s breath away...“Yes!!!!!” we both said and then prayed for next 5 months that we would be blessed with good weather so that our guests could enjoy the same experience.
Since I was a given a Barbie doll ‘Bride’ as a child, I had dreamt about ‘the dress’. The reality is that by this point I had already virtually shopped for said dress and had my heart set on a Grace Loves Lace
‘Holly’ dress or the Claire Pettibone
‘Patchouli’ dress. The decision was made before I had even set foot in a bridal shop...Once I had accepted the fact that Sam and I were not getting married on a beach in Australia, I opted to find the latter. I hotfooted it down to Exquisite Bridal
in Winchester, where the wonderful Natalie had informed me that they had just received the Patchouli dress. I tried it on, teamed it with a cathedral length veil, slipped on some Rachel Simpson
Mint Mimosas and that was it. I was done.
“Shall we talk suits?” I asked Sam one evening, at which point he confidently told me that his suit would be a surprise! A combination of fear and sickness overtook my body (it is not unheard of for Sam to combine a Hawaiian shirt with Crocs!) and protest I did, but to no avail. Now, most brides would have put their foot down in this department and going into this situation blind seemed like utter MADNESS. However, Sam had enlisted my talented cousin David Minns who owns Brown in Town Tailors
to make his bespoke suit. I was confident that not only would I love the suit, I knew Dave would ensure that he looked amazing and when I saw him at the end of the aisle, I was totally overwhelmed with how gorgeous he looked.
The Wedding Party
The boys went for a very country look with a combination of tweed and bow ties! Whilst I chose the sparkliest dresses that I could find from ASOS
for the bridesmaids. I am lucky to have so many talented friends, Tracey one of my dearest friends did all of our make up and hair and still managed to also get herself ready ahead of me for the ceremony!
Well this was the easy bit. I am lucky to work for the most amazing company who grow all of their own flowers
. When it came to deciding the décor for our run down sheep barn it was a simple decision, lots and lots of scented flowers that would evoke everyone’s senses. I combined bright apricots with soft peaches, creams and oranges with clashing berries, herbs and foliage - I didn’t hold back. My work colleagues were amazing and dedicated two days to ensure that the place looked amazing. My hairpiece was something to behold with its blousy flowers and flowing multi-coloured ribbons. I felt a million dollars. I had asked my friend Steph who owns Bonica
in Petersfield to make my bouquet. We finished off the barn with hundreds of fairy lights, glitter balls and anything that sparkled basically. I had sourced 70’s editions of Mills and Boons as favours for the girls and my Mum had made homemade chilli chutney for all the boys and then every guest also had a picture magnet of themselves to take home as their place setting which took my friend Emily and I HOURS but the end result was so worth it.
Sadly both Sam and I had recently lost our fathers and as a nod to my Dad we had chosen September 19th (his birthday) as our wedding day. We like to think that both Dads were on sun watch and it was a scorcher of a day. We provided mini bottles of prosecco and beer during the ceremony. I walked in to “Cosmic Love” instrumental (which still makes me well up when I hear it) and we walked out to us all singing “Signed Sealed Delivered” by the great Stevie Wonder.
Sam and I met Yoav from Guacho Grill at a food festival and asked him there and then if he did weddings. As luck would have it, the only date available was the 19th September. We combined him with the amazing Keeley’s Kitchen
Sam and I LOVE music and dancing so music was very important. We had the Mantic Muddlers
to kick us off followed by One For The Money who allowed me to sing Chaka Khan “Ain’t Nobody” to Sam in my Mums 80’s sequin blue jacket (thank you boys). They also nailed Black Keys “Everlasting light” which was our first dance and so special to us. We then had a friend and DJ Luke Baines pick up the tunes for the rest of the night until we were whisked away on a quad bike festooned with flowers! Of course!
My brother is in a band who had used Will
before and also knew him as a friend. We met over Skype and Sam and I knew we would love having him to do the pictures. We definitely gave him a tough time on the day as it was like herding cats! His style is beautiful and really captured the day exactly as I remember it.
There are so many people and things that made the day special and that is EXACTLY what it’s about and why it is the best day of your life (which is no lie)! My advice is don’t get hung up on too many things and live in the moment before, during and after as there is nothing like it and it is a beautiful journey with everyone.