This morning we were blessed with a village hall wedding and this afternoon we are blessed with a back garden yurt wedding. Both filled with an abundance of DIY and money saving tips and both incredibly stylish.
The cake table in particular is spectacular. There’s a hessian table cloth, tissue tassels, old hanging portraits of family members, a wonderful rustic table plan, and delicious treats for the guests to enjoy.
This wasn’t the only rustic influence. The Great Barn ceremony where the couple said I do also made a beautiful backdrop for the nuptials. And Bride Sasha’s customised Dana Bolton gown with it’s boho vibes fitted in with the theme perfectly. And how can I forget her flower crown and beautiful wild and organic bouquet in THE most delicious Autumnal hues.
Sasha the Bride: Having been together for 13 years, Tom proposed in my parent’s garden at the end of our son’s first Easter egg hunt. So having the wedding reception in the same place felt quite fitting and gave us the opportunity to really create a wedding that was totally unique and personal to us. It also meant it was an experience that wouldn’t have been possible without a lot of help from friends, family and neighbours – especially as we got married within 6 months of getting engaged…well we’d already waited 13 years!
Bespoke French lace dress with silk slip made by Dana Bolton. I chose to customise her ‘Myrtle’ design by adding sleeves, just like my Mum’s wedding dress in 1980. I’d been to a couple of traditional wedding dress shops and couldn’t find anything that felt like ‘me’, but as soon as I walked into Dana’s studio I knew I’d be leaving with my dress – boho heaven! I felt extremely lucky to be able to wear a dress that was made for me and I won’t be letting it go anytime soon!
Artificial flower crowns all the way from Australia, made by Gez Page at ‘Ever So in Love’ with matching versions for the flowergirls. I took a risk with choosing the colours for these before we’d finalised the colour scheme and they were also a surprise for Tom so I had to try and encourage him to go for complementary ties to match without him knowing – which lucky proved easier than expected.
The boys all wore their own navy suits (we wanted to have an eclectic and relaxed feel) but their matching ties helped pulled everything together. Our best friend and bridesmaid Sarah even made a mini bow tie from the sample fabric so our 1 ½ year old son Callum could match Daddy!
Off the peg from Mango and the flowergirl outfits were from various department stores. I loved dressing my girls!
Hair and Makeup
I cannot take any credit here(!)…all the creation of Natalie who was recommended by one of my Sister’s friends. As I don’t wear a lot of make up normally, I was obsessed with not ‘over doing it’ and making sure I still looked like me on the day, and so the trial was really helpful and a lot of fun!
No florists here! We did it ourselves. I visited the Covent Garden Flower market two days before the wedding with my Mum and Sister. We took samples of all the fabrics – the dress, bridesmaids’ dresses and the boys’ ties – and tried our hardest to find something that worked. We then spent most of Friday getting ‘creative’, dressing the yurt, making posies for the girls and button holes for the boys as well as the table decorations. We also saved some flowers for our cake…
All made by Sasha’s amazing cousin Janine Brownhill…and yes, they tasted as good as they looked! A stunning tiered naked cake accompanied by cupcakes in chocolate orange, strawberry mint and lemon meringue…perfect for grabbing from the dance floor.
Our ceremony was held at The Great Barn in Ruislip a beautiful 700 year old timber frame barn followed by a reception in a 40 foot yurt in the grounds of Sasha’s parent’s house in Pinner, Middlesex. The yurt was stunning and really created a magical surprise for our guests – not exactly something you’d expect to see in a suburban back garden! It spoke for itself, needed very little dressing and really came to life at night with the lights from the dance floor.
We wanted to keep everything simple as the venues themselves were so beautiful. So, we initially intended to use just fairy lights and balloons as decoration, however the very late addition of ivy from our garden (great idea Auntie Tina!) really was the finishing touch to the yurt. One memory that stands out is my Uncle Tom balanced on a ladder positioning ivy at the top of one of the yurt posts under instruction from Auntie Tina (did we mention that Tom was 79 and only has one 1 leg?!).
Decorations were a real team effort and we can’t thank our family and friends enough.
We chose Michael because his portfolio was really natural and we weren’t looking for posed formal shots. He made it really easy for us and the few formal shots we did take turned out to be fab thanks to Michael’s creativity and eye for spotting unique photo opportunities (our favourite being taken under a railway bridge that Michael has spotted on the way to the ceremony). He also sent a handful of our best photographs the day after the wedding as well which was completely unexpected and allowed us to stay in our wedding bubble that little bit longer!
Food & Drink
We used a local caterer Foodie Wuddies for the canapes and drinks reception. Everything else was very much DIY…we put together large posh picnic hampers for each table (a very hands on approach to the wedding breakfast!) and together with a ‘help yourself’ bar (which included a keg of local Rebellion ale) really added to the relaxed vibe we’re were trying to create. And a hog roast later on in the evening topped everyone up!
Having live music at our reception was really important to us, and we took a risk with Festival Foxes as we’d never seen them live before – however having trawled through dozens and dozens of bands online as soon as we heard them we knew they were what we were after and they didn’t disappoint on the day, they were awesome.