She’s A Festival Parade.

A line from our collaboration with Coulson Macleod….inspired by Sophie.

And who you might ask is she?

Well folks, Sophie is a true RMW bride. She came to visit us at the National Wedding Show last year to see our seminars and tell us all about her summer 2012 wedding plans during a one to one consultation.

I’ll be honest, there wasn’t that many suggestions we could make, Sophie and her soon-to-be husband Darren seemed to have a whole bunch of ideas themselves already that would create an eclectic and bohemian festival-esque affair.

I think I may have asked if I could go as a guest. In fact I’m 99% positive I did.

When Sophie sent her submission through I may have done a little dance at RMW HQ – not least because she clearly embraces some awesome crimper barnet action.

All of the images are courtesy of Jay Rowden and there is LOTS to admire lovelies.

Crimp On

I would have to say my hair was inspired by the 1960’s, my original 1980’s crimpers as I always crimp bits of my hair before a Festival (great tip as it dries it out perfectly for a couple of days in a field), a picture I saved from a wedding magazine, then seeing the O’Shea big day… Loved the beehive and sent the image to all my important ladies who agreed it was perfect!

My crimpers were my something old!

My Auntie Denise from Las Vegas came over for the wedding and I asked if she would do my hair. She was more than happy to do so and she really did do such a beautiful job. But I knew she would. if anyone’s headed for a Vegas Wedding, or she’s back for a month in October and sure she’s like to travel! She also does air-brush make up.

A friend of the family India Harvey Beckinsale (you can find her on Facebook) did my makeup. She was a star! I went for a simple look with black eyeliner flicked 60’s style and a pink cheek with soft pink lipstick.

Peep Toes

My shoes were simple ivory peep toe ones, from the wedding shop where I bought my dress. They were by Paradox and they were simple and elegant. I wore Mode in Pele sparkly silver heels in the evening and white Havianas for the walking to the church.

Second Time Lucky

My dress was Saran by Suzanne Neville from The Wedding Shop in Colchester. I went shopping with my Mumma very soon after we got engaged to find a Jenny Packham that I loved and intended to buy cheaper second hand (I wanted to get the size and style down and informed my mum that there would be no buying on this trip. No no no.)

Jenny P and I had a love affair with the first dress I tried on – it was stunning and I thought it was exactly what I wanted to look like. Glorious. Style noted, wink to mother. Veil chosen, which my mum adored and then I moved onto dress number 2. Picked out by my mum who has incredible taste. Second dress on, (the Suzanne Neville) and I looked in the mirror and somehow forgot what the first dress even looked like. This corseted, Pippa bottom-ed delight was what I was going to marry my Davey in and this is exactly what he would love to see me in. I just knew he would love it.

Also it fit perfectly (well almost at that time) and just needed taking up. It was more boho than a glamorous gown which Jenny Packham is so amazing at getting right. One day I’ll be invited to Elton John’s Black and White Ball and will be wearing a JP ivory gown to this for sure.

My evening dress was an Asos sequined short white number with a (upside down veil/wedding apron/tutu – whatever you want to call it) tulle over-skirt with a dipped hem, to give it length and cover my dignity! We made this with Lisa at Sew Over It who I know through a friend from law school.

Suit To Kill

Davey had his gorgeous navy suit made at Dress 2 Kill it was a surprise for me as I had not gone with him or seen it. I thought he looked stunning in it and he was all I could see as I walked up the aisle.

He wears a suit often for work – I always ensure this coincides with date night as I love him in a smart suit. But he’s a rebel without a cause and literally never wears a tie. (I joke it’s because he can’t do one and that he’s too embarrassed to ask now!) So to see him in one on our wedding day was a real treat. (It was also fun taking it off him in the poppy meadow later on in the day when we were having our alone photos taken. I felt like I was releasing him from his shackles!)

Perfect Pastels

The bridesmaid dresses were pastel colour and bought on a delightful Oxford Street shopping trip from Coast and Debenhams Debut collection. My sister’s floral dress was her own, not sure where from she brought in it on the morning of the wedding and it looked gorgeous. Knew she wouldn’t let me down. Her stunning pink shoes were Brian Attwood.

Groomsmen were asked to wear their own suits and they were brought together with cream Paul Smith ties, TK Lewin baby blue shirts and a retro Casio watch each. Hotties!

Retro Meets Bohemia

I wore a big flower hairband from the same wedding dress shop, loved it the first time I saw it. A cathedral length, ribbon edged Veil with scattered sparkle which my darling mummy bought me and we’re going to lend out/pass down through the generations.

My something Blue was a baby blue Casio watch as Davey always wears one of these cool, retro watches to the festivals we go to. Also my girls bought me a ring from Astley Clark which I saw in a bridal magazine shoot and loved-my something New. The BM’s wore very cool jewellery from my friend Caroline’s jewellery label Miquella.

The Only Choice

Jay, Jay Jay Jay Jay Jay Rowden. What a lovely chap. And what photographs. We loved him and did a lot of research into a photographer. I would send Davey a load of links to photographers and he would say no to all of them. Then when we found Jay, he was finally happy. And we could not have asked for a better person to attend our wedding, embrace our ideas and untraditional approach to capturing the day. We love our pictures and will treasure them forever!

Book him up people he’s incredible and really great fun.

The Groom Entertains

We had an acoustic playlist for the cocktail hour which we loved, then throughout dinner we made a playlist of Elvis and the Beatles, our song upon joining the wedding breakfast was Elvis Burning Love – awesome intro!

Then after dinner I had the most amazing surprise from my new husband who had informed me that the first dance was going to be a surprise. Mmm, control freak relinquishing some control there…. and what that gorgeous boy had done was to actually record the vocals of “our song” oh yes, he can sing! It was Newton Faulkner’s “Dream Catch Me” and I absolutely adored hearing it. Singing lessons and everything – sounded amazing and everyone loved it! Oh and the song means so much to us as it was played at our first gig we went to together on a Monday evening and he sang the words in my ear as we swayed along to the music and fell in love to this song pretty much.

After the first dance Davey’s niece sung Brian Adams’ Heaven and we danced to that as well. Then something completely different….! We had “Gercha”….A Chas and Dave tribute band. Mad but we always go to their Christmas gigs and have such a laugh dancing around like nutters to the songs we grew up with (both have families who come from the London area). Well these guys blew the roof off and people were laughing, dancing, the boys rolled their trouser legs up and everyone swung each other around for an hour and a half before the disco music kicked off. Brilliant.

Our disco music was a playlist we had made of exclusively 90’s classic songs. Here’s a brief example of some of them: I dare you not to say “TUNE”. 90’s are making a comeback!

Supergrass – Feel Alright
Let Loose – Crazy for You
Spin Doctors – Two Princes
Deep Blue Something – Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Prodigy – Smack My Bi*ch Up
Oasis – She’s Electric
Mark Morrison – Return of the Mac
Ultra Nate – Free
Finished up on Haddaway – What is Love

Home Made Favours

We made CD’s of our favourite songs from our favourite gigs. The table names were named after these gigs. It was such an eclectic bunch of songs. Davey designed the cover of the CD and they were made into vinyl looking CD’s. They were entitled Isle of Wedding Fest 2012 as we met at Isle of Wight Festival 2009.

As most people were couples we gave them one CD per couple and a bottle of Greenwich Meantime Beer for the boys as we live in Greenwich and wanted to keep things local as it’s brewed there.

Sweethearts And Snowboards

We had a sweetheart table for two during dinner which was a fabulous idea and solved lots of “top table” family issues by not having one. We also got to chat together and scoot around the other tables easily and not appear rude by keep abandoning a table of people. We decorated this with D and S mosaic letters bought from Greenwich Market. Plus a couple of cans of Strongbow and our Latitude Festival cups – from when we got engaged.

We also had a guestbook in the form of two snowboards which people signed and we are going to make into a bench (one as the seat and one as the back) and put outside on our balcony. Everyone thought this was nuts but loved it really and we got some great messages. We got this idea skiing one year as we sat on one to put our boots on.

We also loved our fancy dress basket and it was hilarious watching people walk around with a cheerleading pompom having out of the back of their trousers and a moustache on their eyebrows.

We also had a candyfloss cart and a Festival Face Artist who drew pretty flowers on guests wrists and around their eyes. Basically a mate who was brilliant at art at school and was up for the gig.

Love Is…

The cakes were homemade fairy cakes by friends and family. They were buttercream icing and they tasted delicious. I felt that cupcakes are sometimes too big and fairy cakes, like ya Nan used to make, were perfect.

They looked so cute and we also sourced a Kim Casali Love is…characters cake topper from ebay. I love those little guys. We always say “Love is…[insert your own random/lovey dovey sentence here]” and had “Love is…” engraved on our wedding rings.

An Amazing Day

Oh it is just such an amazing day. Only point of advice would be that I loved having a change of outfit in the evening as my lovely puddle train on my dress would have really hindered my dance moves!

Also designate an on the day co-ordinator as there were a few wasted minutes in this fabulous day which flies past anyway, which were spent doing bits which I would have loved to have delegated but you forget that your guests/bridal party are also really enjoying themselves so it ultimately falls on you! That is unless you have a co-ordinator, someone who you unleash your Bridezilla on before you start, so you can completely relax.

I’m offering my services if people want a relatively free one on their wedding day as I’m super organised and know what a fellow super organised would like. E-mail me at if you or other brides are interested.

Venue – Moreves Barn

Brides Shoes – Pink at Paradox

Brides Gown – Suzanne Neville at The Wedding Shop

Grooms Suit – Dress2Kill

Maids – Coast And Debut at Debenhams

Photography – Jay Rowden

Candy Floss, Face Painting, Snow Board guest books…….Can you see why I tried to bag an invite?!

And that last portrait of Darren carrying Sophie through the poppy fields? I would blow that up as big as it will go and have it stapled to my ruddy roof. THAT’S how immense it is.

Big 90’s Comeback Love

Charlotte xxx

17 thoughts on “She’s A Festival Parade.

  1. What an amazing day!! I’ve had to choke back the tears reading this post! It was an blast being a part of it all – a more smashing bride there couldnt be! xxxx

  2. Ok so now I need to find a poppy field near my venue….can you tell me where you can buy the casio watches?! I think I need one!

  3. Love love love this wedding! It has brightened up my afternoon! Such a warm happy couple! Fab photos too, especially those lovely shots of the bride and groom alone near the end.

  4. I’m a little bit in love with that sultry looking sky and I haven’t even begun to talk about how flipping amazing Darren and Sophie look.

    Crimpers from the 1980s? RESPECT! I think mine went out with the rubbish in the late 90s but I so regret that now because Sophie’s hair is to die for!

    And those poppy fields, the hopelessly romantic strands of candy floss and THAT car! Totally dreamy.

  5. Well, I have procrastinated my way on to RMW again this afternoon, and I can say there is nothing I regret. What a beautiful wedding, so together it looks like a styled shoot.
    Also – either I’m unconciously following a trend, or Darren and Sophie share my tastes to a T. Their table flowers are my whole flower scheme minus the gypsophelia! Weird…
    Thanks again for brightening my day with wedding pretty 🙂

  6. Ohhh! Thank you Charlotte! I cannot say how much I love seeing my wedding on the pages I looked at every day for inspitation (ahem, and still do, now just for love though!). Loads of our ideas were straight off these very pages.

    Blue casio watch was from the Watch Shop online (about £15!)

    And my bouquet was Aster daisies – oh I loved them and had a wicked chuck the bouquet moment and my friend carried her catch back on the train with her after the wedding (weirdly one of only two single ladies there!!)

    My florist was Sam at and she is such a gorgeous creative. She also suggested and did a fabulous job with our church doorway pom poms as well. Brilliant woman.

    Thank you for all the lovely comments I am chuffed to bits and the husband just said “ohh, it’s really cool to hear such sweet stuff actually” Now he understands why he’s been a RMW widow for nearly two years! xxxxx

  7. Can I get a big fat close up of that hair & how Sophie is working the veil with it please? It looks utterly perfect! And another bride doing CD favours – a girl after my own heart.

    Sophie sweetheart if you fancy a trip to Liverpool you can co-ordinate my day! Bring the crimpers xx

  8. Shoot me an e-mail Karen hun and I’ll send you some other shots of the beehive bouff! Veil was wedged in at the crown and only managed it for the ceremony as it was long but gorgeous!

    And Liverpool’s not too far ! Those crimpers will last a nuclear war xx

    And your guests will thank you for the CD’s in their cars after the big day x

  9. Will do Sophie! The CDs were one of the first things we decided on, so it’s defo a winner. Speak soon, looking forward to seeing the veil/hive combo! 🙂

  10. the hair….the candy floss….the star wand!
    Love it!!

    Gorgeous wedding – one for the pinterest board I think! 😉

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