Sunset In The Secret Garden.


Wow. Jessica and Ollie mixed contemporary and rural elements to perfection. I especially like the sleek modern venue that they chose. Millenium Galleries was the perfect inner city setting.

Jessica is a successful jewellery and fashion designer based in Sheffield and wore a limited edition dress from Coast in collaboration with the V&A.

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Jessica The Bride: After trying on numerous typical fluffy lacy wedding dresses I decided they weren’t for me. I preferred a more modern look, clean lines, but a subtle nod to wedding styling. While shopping (On my mum’s birthday!) we popped into Coast and we were both blown away by the gorgeous selection of limited edition dresses inspired by the V&A’s ball gowns exhibition. My dress was “Almond” in colour so looked amazing against my olive complexion, instead of the lace it had carefully hand beaded spiral designs and it even had a little train to give it a more bridal feel. I never imagined I would wear an “off the peg” dress but I instantly loved this dress.

We took it to Amie B in Sheffield who does specialist wedding dress alterations and she made the dress perfectly fit my body shape. Added more netting to make it feel more glamorous and a little extra beading to draw the eye. She sourced a delicate scalloped edged veil, which complemented the dress perfectly. And with a cheeky shoe find on eBay my outfit was complete.

All that remained was the jewellery and it took me a long time to decide what I was doing in that department! What does a jewellery designer wear on her wedding day?! I settled on a custom made necklace, earring and bracelet set made at my studio by workshop manager Andy. The designs were based on monograms of my initials “JFA” Jessica Flinn, soon to be Allen. I was inspired by an America designer called Jennifer Zeuner so I took a bit of her state side cool to the UK.

Ollie wanted to be a snappily dressed groom – none of this “Top hat and tails” oversized hire suit nonsense. He wanted a smooth, slim lined blue smartly cut suit so we went for high street favourite Next. He managed to kit out his whole grooms party at roughly the same price as the hire suits – we finished his outfit with custom made skinny ties and handkerchiefs made my Amie B – we went for satin, silk finish to give the chaps a more wedding feel. Ollie finished off his look with Tan leather shoes with blue soles, which I managed to convince him were too expensive – then passed them down the chain of command to our best man who bought them and snuck them out of the shop for a later surprise.

I had made Ollie two wedding rings, the first was a Stainless Steel ring with the engraving “Jess and Ollie 31.04.14” engraved inside but I knew he really wanted a Titanium one. With help from my workshop manager Andy I made him one which I surprised him with on the morning of the wedding – oh and a stunning Daniel Wellington Tan Leather watch (All available at the Jessica Flinn Boutique – Hint hint!)

When we were looking for venues in Sheffield we didn’t really find anything too inspiring until we walked into the Millennium Galleries. Sheffield is packed full of traditional, historic buildings with aristocratic portraits staring down on you but that wasn’t what we wanted from a venue. It had to be city centre as our families were all travelling to Sheffield so the Millennium Galleries was on our list for a visit. The gallery is so “Ollie” clean lines, white walls, artwork, design and culture all rolled into one. Coupled with a long aisle (perfect for me – and my ego!) and chairs that were smart, black and didn’t need silly covers – we were sold.

The Millennium Galleries didn’t seem like an all day venue to us so we settled on Green Directions which is a farm come conference centre and wedding venue on the outskirts of Sheffield for our reception and evening do. We wanted our families who didn’t know much of Sheffield to see a combination of its beauty. City centre chic mixed with the Peak District’s beauty.

I’d describe our wedding as Country-City, Modern-Traditional and DIY. Our colour scheme (and I use the phrase very loosely) was Emerald green and navy blue but we had a lot of royal blue, grey and white mixed in. We did most of the designing and printing ourselves, using local suppliers that I use at my work. We made tea towels as our favours and mixed in some home made street signs and a giant post box – and hey presto our wedding was born.

I discovered Swallows and Damsons on Instagram and realise I was late to the party. Anna runs an amazing little flower shop in Sheffield but specialises in really unique, unusual and dramatic arrangements. She uses succulents to add a clean modern feel and we mixed in some traditional coffee coloured roses to keep things classy. We got fish bowls with succulent displays for our centerpieces and contrasted them with wooden planks and dramatic stripy table runners, which we made from Ikea fabric. (Thanks mum!)

One thing that I found particularly difficult was finding a suitable matching bridesmaid dress combo for four very different bridesmaids. What do you do when you have two curvy busty bridesmaids and two small, svelte ones? A red head, two blondes and a brunette. We went to a massive bridal warehouse in Manchester to find the Dessy dresses I’d seen on the internet and ordered four very flattering, not too exposing bridesmaid dresses. They took five months to arrive and we got them modified by Amie B again in Sheffield – seriously what would we have done without Amie B?

We were really disappointed with the Dessy dresses when they arrived. All of the maids had been measured and we had ordered sizes to fit. Only one of the dresses when they arrived fitted correctly. They needed major alterations – I feel like we were conned a little bit but there must be other brides out there with similar Dessy experiences to us! All the bridesmaids had personalised engraved cuff bracelets, bespoke Jessica Flinn delicate heart shape necklaces and earrings – the perks of the job!

We designed our ceremony – with two readings and personal vows. We adapted “Deiter Rams – 10 principals of good design” for one of our readings and mixed in “Love is like owning a dog by Taylor Mali” for a little humour. I was nearly a blubbering mess at the end of the aisle – it was so emotional.

We had this amazing band called “Under the Covers” who started with a Jazz Trio and then went on to perform in the evening. Everyone was dancing and they were brilliant!!! They sorted the PA for our speeches and they kept going and going in the evening. I cannot recommend them highly enough – I feel like we should get married again so we can dance the night away – come on friends… you know what you have to do!

We went for Feast Yorkshire after checking out some of the local suppliers in Sheffield and we instantly liked Siobhan and her simple modern style. She used micro herbs and made the perfect duck with black current jus. We had the chance to taste the food at two tasting evenings, which really helped us decided on our food, and how we wanted it presenting (and test her) -10/10 for Siobhan! We had baked Camembert for starter, roast confetti duck for main and an asiette of desserts.

Did you see our cake?! Wasn’t it amazing!!! We love Claire Kemps Contemporary style, it was modern, designed and dramatic. She did it in three different flavours, lemon curd, Chocolate brownie (with macadamia nuts, cranberries and white chocolate) and carrot cake. Yum yum yum yum…

Jon Dennis (S6 Photography) – What a stinker! Only joking! I came across Jon’s contemporary dramatic style on various wedding blogs – he seems to capture that special moment with a bit of vibrant colour mixed in. Perfect sunsets, natural not too posed photos of everyone. He really captured the mood of our day and we really enjoyed his company. My mum was so impressed with how he blended into the wedding, as he was so smartly dressed, and we finished off the night with a photographer, bride and groom selfie. One thing that’s really nice about Jon at S6 is he gets Ollie and my dry sense of humour so we really had fun across the day. He got some amazing photos – and I hardly noticed him being there. It was like having another close best friend, who conveniently had a camera in his hand.

Photography by S6 Photography
Gown Coast (V&A Collaboration Inspired by the “Ball gowns” exhibition – Limited Edition Collection) | Jewellery Jessica Flinn (The Bride) Jessica Flinn Jewellery Boutique And Studio | Shoes Harriet Wilde | Veil Amie B | Florist Swallows And Damsons | Venue Millenium Galleries and Green Directions | Cake Claire Kemp Cakes | Catering Feast Yorkshire | Bridesmaids Dessy and Modified by Amie B | Entertainment Under The Covers Band | Transport Vintage Sheffield Buses .

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Author: Adam Crohill
Adam likes Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain.

11 thoughts on “Sunset In The Secret Garden.

  1. I always love how you can spot a Swallows and Damsons bouquet a mile off. Stunning!
    Congrats Jessica and Ollie, the shot of you walking across the hills is breathtaking x

  2. Hooray for Sheffield!!!!

    I used to live in the big tall building you can see in the background of the photos…so can vouch for the fact that the Millennium Gallery is an AWESOME venue, so spacious and light. It looks great with the bold greens and blues too.

    Lauren – I know what you mean about Swallows & Damsons too – all of the blooms are gorgeous.

    This is making me miss the Peak District as well – congratulations to Ollie and Jessica for combining the best bits of Sheffield!

    Fern x

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