Inspiration

Obviously every wedding we feature on RMW is gorgeous, but sometimes certain weddings resonate more with me. I don't know what it is about Rosie and Sam's big day but putting it together just left me with the biggest smile on my face. There are good vibes all round - you'll see. Rosie crafted and sourced most of the decor herself, along with her mum, and she loved the process so much that she now runs a prop hire and styling company, so if you're planning a wedding in Yorkshire do get in touch. Images come from Photography34 and I think perhaps this has something to do with why I love this wedding so much, the images are just so joyful, real and honest. Enjoy lovely ones!

The Bride

Rosie The Bride: I found the dress shopping a bit of a struggle, albeit still very enjoyable(!), in that I bought 3 before finding the one I wore on the day! I originally purchased a lovely Rembo Styling dress, but became unsure it was the one for me. I also tried a Needle & Thread dress before finding a sample of the Halfpenny Daisy dress I had originally seen and loved but discounted as was out of my price range. I rushed to Ellie Sanderson with a bridesmaid in tow and I fell in love with how simple but beautiful the dress was. I had it altered by the fantastic Bex at Bex Brides, with the addition of some lace cap sleeves and a silk chiffon sash. It was the perfect boho chic dress I had always imagined wearing. I wanted to keep accessories to a minimum. My jewellery was a simple matching cubic zirconia gold bracelet and necklace from Accessorize’s Z range. I knew I didn’t want traditional ivory wedding shoes and ended up purchasing a beautiful, and very budget-friendly, pair of pink velvet block heel shoes from Next.

The Groom

Sam’s outfit was the outcome of a rather quick trip to Reiss in Westfields one Saturday afternoon! It was the first store we went in, and he tried on a number of suits and jacket/trouser combinations in other stores, but we both loved the original Italian wool oatmeal suit. It was a bit different and fitted perfectly with the relaxed vibe of the wedding. He paired it with a simple white shirt from John Lewis and some Bobbie's brogues from Harvey Nichols.

The Venue

We knew from the beginning that we would want a venue which offered us a relaxed and informal wedding, which allowed flexibility and for us to have a lot of input on the styling and feel of the day. We also wanted somewhere which made the most of the location – we are both from North Yorkshire and we really wanted the beauty of the countryside to be on show. Deepdale Farm offered us a completely blank canvas for creating the day we wanted, with beautiful views. We were able to access the barn from the Wednesday before the wedding, which became base camp for an incredible troop of family and friends, who we couldn't have done it without! Although stressful at the amount of work that we needed to do, I am actually so grateful it was like this as the time we spent with our families and friends, coming together to create the day together, was amazing.

The Décor

I knew straight away that I didn’t want a strict colour scheme where everything matched, and I quickly learnt from Pinterest and Rock My Wedding that I wanted a bohemian and ethereal feel to the décor and styling. I quickly realised it would also be a very DIY and hands-on décor kind of wedding! I wanted any sort of colour scheme to develop naturally – I guess green ended up being a base for our décor – from the flowers, to the olive leaf motif on our invitations, which I carried through by using olive sprigs for our place settings and for our cake. We added to the green with pinks and peaches through the flowers, ribbon bunting and bridesmaid dresses. The décor really was a labour of love – I can’t even count the endless hours spent making all of our signage, place names, seating plans and banners. Although time consuming, it was a great way to spend time with our family and friends who we couldn’t have done it without. When I saw some large calligraphy canvas banners on Pinterest I knew I wanted these to be a feature in our ceremony barn – I made the first one and then the other five were all done by my mum and dad. My mum also made the beautiful ‘Dance me to the Wedding now, dance me on and on’ wooden sign, as this was a quote from Leonard Cohen’s Dance me to the end of Love song that I had used on our invitations. My sister spent many weekends with me hand stamping place names and the table plan, as well as making all of the chalkboard and wooden calligraphy signage. We spent much of our eighteen month engagement trawling car boot sales and online selling sites for all the props and furniture, such as 100 antique glass bottles we used for the table flowers, to the recycled drum fire pits and peacock bamboo chairs. Much of this was done by my wonderfully creative mum, who we couldn’t have done it without! My mother-in-law made us hundreds of metres of ribbon bunting to use as a feature, alongside the lanterns, in the main barn which worked so well in bringing everything together. Along one side of the barn we hung hundreds of polaroid photos of us from pegs, which was a great talking point for all our guests. We now have our own decor hire and styling company - Wild At Heart Weddings.

The Flowers

The flowers were a very important aspect of the day for me – and I knew that I wanted these to be a significant feature of the overall look of the wedding. Jo at Hearts and Flowers was amazing, and she very quickly understood the look we were going for – wild and unconstructed using lots of foliage and seasonal flowers. I asked her if she could include some olive sprigs and eucalyptus in my bouquets, and left everything else up to her, and I was so happy with the final result! I liked the idea of my bridesmaids having simple foliage bouquets, which worked so well with their dresses and the bohemian style. Jo made some beautiful little foliage crowns for my flower girls, which they managed to keep on most of the day! Early on in discussions with Jo, we had mentioned that we would like to be quite involved with as much of the flower design as possible – which she completely embraced! We spent much of the week before the wedding decorating and setting up at the barns, and on the Thursday Jo and her colleague Rachel came to work on some of the bigger features such as the ladders and milk churns. In the evening, all the women gathered and Jo and Rachael did a workshop with us so they could leave us to do all the flower arranging for the bottles on the tables, and the flower wall which hung at the back of the barn behind the top table and the band. It was so much fun to do some of the flowers ourselves, and we turned it into a bit of a hen do for family and friends who were unable to make my main hen do.

The Wedding Party

The wedding party fashion, especially the boys, was one of the things we struggled the most with, but it worked out so perfectly in the end! I struggled to find much inspiration for ‘alternative’ groomsmen outfits, as we wanted it to look relaxed but still fit in with Sam. We set a date to meet all the boys at Westfield one Saturday, all thinking we would be there for several hours but much to the boys delight we were done within an hour, and they could get home and watch the rugby! Reiss came to the rescue again – we found some stone chino trousers, which all the boys wore, and we paired these with waistcoats for the groomsmen, and matching jacket for the best man. It was the perfect informal, relaxed but still coordinated look! I bought our page boys some lovely trousers and braces from Zara (in the sale again!) which we paired with white shirts and sneakers. I wanted my bridesmaids to feel comfortable in their dresses, and again didn’t want a prescriptive look for them. We found some beautiful Ted Baker dresses, which offered us the same style dress, but in different colours and lengths. My sister, who was my maid of honour, wore the dress in a pale mint green with full tulle mid length skirt, which was beautiful, and my three other bridesmaids wore variations of the pink dress. We bought my gorgeous little flower girls each a different dress in Monsoon, and I bought them matching cardigans from H&M.

The Ceremony

We always knew that we would be having a non-religious ceremony, and wanted something which was constructed around our values and experiences. A humanist ceremony gave us the opportunity to create a truly personal ceremony and it was such an amazing process to put so much thought and effort into the ceremony itself. Our humanist celebrant was Andy Ison, who we met and Skyped on several occasions throughout our engagement, which meant he really got to know us as a couple. With our input, he produced the most beautiful ceremony, representing everything we wanted included in the most important part of the day. My uncle played a beautiful version of ‘We have all the time in the world’ on the piano for me and my dad to walk up the aisle too, which has strong emotional connotations for me and my dad. We had two readings, including ‘Love is a temporary madness’ which we asked Sam’s sister to read for us. There were quite a few tears when our gorgeous 8-year old nephew also got up to do the reading as a surprise for us, which was one of my favourite moments of the day! We also surprised our guests by asking them to join in with a communal sing of ‘God Only Knows’ by the Beach Boys, which was hilarious and a great way to ease any nerves! We walked out to one of my all-time favourite songs ‘Ain’t no mountain High Enough.’

The Entertainment

We wanted music to feature heavily as part of the entertainment, and luckily we both have a lot of musical friends! The evening entertainment was kicked off by a local ceilidh band, which was a brilliant way to start the party! Sam actually plays the drum in an amazing blues band, Gentlemen of the Shade, so they were up next! It was so awesome for Sam to be able to play at his own wedding, as they do a lot of other people’s weddings. From 10pm onwards we booked a DJ from Leeds-based Hi-life, who carried on the party till the early hours. We also booked the fantastic Monique from Boothamatic, a retro inspired open air photo booth. This went down such a treat with our guests – they were given instant prints of their photographs so we thought these were a nice alternative to favours!

The Food

We are both very much into our food, so this was always going to be very important! We wanted a relaxed but beautiful feast for our guests. We looked at so many different catering companies, but nothing sat just right with either of us. As soon as I came across Annika’s Apron I thought I was on to a winner, and I quickly scheduled a call with Annika. Within minutes I knew I had found the one! Annika instantly ‘got’ the relaxed and alternative feel we were after in terms of the food, and she sent over some amazing sample menus, which I’m sure would all have been amazing! As we have always enjoyed holidays (and the food!) in Greece and Italy, we decided to go for a Mediterranean inspired feast, which included Lamb souvlaki, halloumi skewers, tomato orzo, flat breads, stuffed aubergines and tzatziki. These were served to our tables on beautiful sharing platters. The food was beyond amazing, and Annika and her team were absolutely incredible! Annika and her husband Mark also offer an awesome street-food style Burrito bar for the evening food, which went down an absolute treat! I can’t sign their praises enough. For desserts we decided to go for a wedding bake off – it worked so well, and we couldn’t believe how incredible everything was! We presented the star baker with an engraved wooden spoon. Both our mums also contributed to the sweet table, with homemade panacottas and meringues. We also had a gorgeous cheese cake and crackers sourced from a local Yorkshire supplier.

The Photography

I think my all-time favourite images from a Rock My Wedding real wedding was photographed by Tony of Photography 34. Luckily for us, Tony is local to us as he is based in Scarborough, and we booked him as soon as he told us he had availability! We knew that we wanted a documentary style photography, and Tony’s portfolio was incredible. Tony was amazing on the day, we hardly noticed him and he was so professional. The photographs he produced were so incredible, and looking through them for the first time made us feel as though we were back there. On the day, he suggested to us that we could take a quick drive up on to the moors above our venue to catch the light before sunset. It was so difficult to leave our guests, but we are so glad we did it! It was actually really special just to take a bit of a breather together, and the photographs are so beautiful that it was totally worth it! I would definitely recommend the same to any other couples if their photographer suggests it! I remember us walking back into the farm, just after the sun had set, with all the fairy lights, fires and just after the sun had set just as the night was getting started, with all the fairy lights, fires and buzz. One of the things I had worried about was not having a videographer, but as soon as I saw the images I knew we had made the right decision. Tony captured every moment and emotion throughout the day, and he has given us the most precious images we will treasure forever.

Advice

I was the biggest stress-head for several months before the wedding, mostly about all the little things I wanted to make sure were included. It REALLY doesn’t matter if you don’t sort every little thing, so please try not to stress too much! Lots of things weren’t quite as I had pictured but it doesn’t stop you having the best day ever! I think the biggest shock to me was just how fast time went! I know everyone says this but it is SO true, I have never experienced time going so quickly. This is why I would advise investing in a photographer you know will document the day the way you want it, so you always have these to go back to if some moments went by in a blur! Get your friends and family involved as much as possible, they will appreciate it so much, and it makes it so personal and special. We had a close family friend drive me and my dad to the venue, our nephews did a shark and stormtrooper dance, and two friends from university even wrote and performed a whole song for us, which was another favourite moment! Finally – all the stress is totally worth it, it really is the best, most love filled day of your life!

Written by Fern Godfrey

Decor & Styling: Wild At Heart Weddings | Bride: Daisy by Halfpenny London | Boutique: Ellie Sanderson | Alterations: Bex Brides | Groom: Reiss | John Lewis | Venue: Deepdale Farm | Flowers: Hearts & Flowers | Bridesmaids: Ted Baker | Groomsmen: Reiss | Celebrant: Andy Ison | DJ: The Hi Life | Catering: Annika's Apron | Hair & Make Up: Megan Green | Furniture: Totem Tipi

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