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Love In A Hopeless Place.

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We always have a special place in our hearts for a Birmingham wedding, especially when it comes from the awesome Fazeley Studios. The high ceilings and white walls are the perfect background for gorgeous photography – it makes the vibrant colours of Claire and Kofi’s wedding look even bolder and brighter.

I also have a soft spot for a massive smile and Claire and Kofi are literally beaming from ear to ear in every photo.

Jordanna Marston has really captured the spirit of their wedding, the images of Kofi and Claire’s father making their speeches are PERFECT.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0001

Reflecting Us As Individuals

From the outset we were looking for something different – not your bog standard hotel with patterned carpets and mismatching curtains! We wanted a venue that reflected who we were as individuals and as a couple.

Fazeley Studios created the immediate WOW factor every time you entered the building. I love the fact that as you wander through the streets of Digbeth, the dilapidated buildings, numerous railway bridges and the graffiti, and wonder where on earth you’re going to find a ‘nice’ wedding venue. That snobby attitude quickly disappears as soon as you enter the restored Sunday School that is Fazeley Studios.

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We also loved the fact that we could host the whole event; from the ceremony, the wedding breakfast and the party, all at the same venue.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0003

Soft And Natural

The Bridal party hair was done by Bev at Levi Hair who are based in Moseley, Birmingham. I went for a loose up do with natural curls to help keep the look soft and natural.

I did my own make up and have to praise Bare Minerals for the way it lasted all day and all night.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0004

The One For Me

My dress was designed by Justin Alexander. It was the first dress of many that I tried on and I knew instantly it was the one for me – the beaming smile and swagger in my walk gave it away!

I bought the dress from True Romantica in Kenilworth. The ladies in the store were excellent in making me feel like a million dollars and helped me make constructive decisions about what worked and what didn’t.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0005

Jewellery Magpie

I discovered my beautiful but sensible shoes in Rachel Simpson Shoes in Kings Norton, Birmingham. They were so comfortable; I just danced the whole night away!

My jewellery was probably one of the hardest things to buy. I’m a bit of a magpie and I love all kinds of jewellery. After hunting high and low on the high street, I discovered beautiful and vintage inspired jewellery and hair accessories online from Glitzy Secrets.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0006

Simple But Stylish

We had three Bridesmaids – my big sister, Sarah, my oldest school friend, Helen and my husbands niece, Carys. I dressed them in simple but stylish cream dresses from Ted Baker (both child and adult dresses).

The Groomsmen – Trevor, the Father of the Bride, Daniel, the Grooms father, Simon the Best Man and Ushers Andy, Atli, Jacob and Isaac, all wore beige coloured suits hired from Peter Posh in Minworth.

The dresses and the suits complimented each other perfectly without trying too hard.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0007

Vibrant Colourful Blooms

I didn’t go for a particular theme as the venue already did most of the talking for us. I was determined to keep the day simple. The flowers brought beautiful, vibrant colours (red, pink and purple) to what was a very neutral event.

The florist, Rachel from Isabelle Daisy in Harborne, created a beautiful array of arrangements from bouquets, button holes and table flowers. She turned my vision for bright, vibrant and mismatching, untidy flowers and went one step further to make them just stunning.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0008

Time To Breathe

The ceremony was the most nerve racking part of the day for me (for him it was probably doing his speech). I loved that we involved close friends and family in giving short readings. This broke up the ceremony up and gave us valuable time to breathe!

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0009

So High

We chose the song ‘So High’ by John Legend for our first dance. This is one of my all time favourite songs and we share great memories together with the song. Dancing to it at our wedding was, however, the longest four minutes of our life!

Our DJ was recommended to us and was DJ Groy from Birmingham.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0010

Cake, Cake And More Cake

We created a beautiful cake table with an assortment of fairy cakes, homemade donuts, fruit cake, all on top of the three tier chocolate and victoria sponge wedding cake.

Fazeley Studios catering team provided a gorgeous three course wedding breakfast (each guest could choose from three starters, three main courses and three desserts).

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0011

All our invitation stationery was designed by a close friend, Mark Willis. The table plan and place names were created by our beautiful friend, Leanda McCann.

Their patience and support was amazing.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0012

A Wonderful Few Minutes Together

The main advice I was given time and time again was to remember to take a moment to take it all in. I have to say the day went as a bit of a blur, but I love the moment when Kofi and I sat on the beautiful sofas and waited while everyone took their seats for the wedding breakfast.

This was a few minutes for Kofi and I to be alone and ask ourselves ‘is this really happening?!’. It was a wonderful few minutes together.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0013

Great Ability To Capture The Mood

I first met Jordanna Marston at a vintage wedding fair in Birmingham. Kofi and I met her a few weeks later in Bacchus Bar and instantly developed a great rapport. She showed us a vast array of fantastic wedding albums and we could see immediately that she had a great ability to capture a mood of romance, emotion, and sentiment of each and every wedding day. Her style is very much reportage and we instantly favoured this over traditional staged photos.

The composition of her pictures and her unique style set her far above any other photographers we had previously looked at. During the pre-wedding shoot we had the opportunity to see how well we worked together and all the best places to go.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0014

After the day I found myself questioning whether Jordanna had captured any of the special moments because I hadn’t seen her there. But on looking at the photos I realised she had an exceptional skill of positioning herself without becoming a distraction while taking photos. I would highly recommend Jordanna Marston to anyone looking for a skilled and professional photographer.

A Colourful Contemporary Wedding At Fazeley Studios, Digbeth, Bride in Justin Alexander Gown, Photography by Jordanna Marston_0015

Click here & view all images from this wedding

Bride’s Gown – Justin Alexander at True Romantica
Shoes – Rachel Simpson
Accessories – Glitzy Secrets
Bridesmaid’s Dresses – Ted Baker
Hair – Bev at Levi Hair
Groomsmen – Peter Posh
Florist – Rachel at Isabelle Daisy
Venue – Fazeley Studios
Photography – Jordanna Marston with Matt Jones of Lucius Fox Photography as second shooter

Aren’t the flowers gorgeous?

It’s THAT kind of bouquet that totally throws my preference for tonal pink roses out of the window!

Lots of love,
Fern x

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Higgledy Piggledy.

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The wedding of Diana and Andrew, or Mr and Mrs Droid as they are known to their friends, is the perfect way to ease you into Monday. It is bursting with colour, fun and some very original ideas.

The colour scheme of ‘Tour De France’ is definitely a first – but somehow works AMAZINGLY. There are some seriously cute knitted characters as table hosts. Mr and Mrs Droid even appear in scarecrow form. Every single guest received a hand painted peg version of themselves.

There is a Bake-Off cake table that Mary Berry herself would be seriously impressed by. And if that wasn’t enough, Diana and Andrew designed and printed all of the bright and bold stationery themselves.

The eccentric pair were lucky with not only a gorgeous summers day, but were also rewarded with Bradley Wiggins winning the Tour De France on their wedding day. Definitely in honour of the couple theming their wedding around the sporting event! 😉

Images come from the fabulous Anushe Low, back with a bang to RMW with this wedding. As always, she captured every last detail beautifully – I really struggled to chose the images for this post!

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Informal And Intimate

Diana The Bride: We knew what we didn’t want more than what we did want at the start. We are both very informal characters and so really wanted an intimate and relaxed day. Although we live in the city, we are both from quite rural areas of Wales and Lincolnshire originally and so wanted to go back to our roots without physically returning to where we grew up!

We discovered the amazing Gate Street Barn a stones throw away from some of our favourite cycling spots in Surrey and instantly knew it was the perfect venue for us. It was a beautiful blank canvas with some brilliant quirky touches. We were particularly taken by the herd of long horn cows who would later share our day.

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Natural Beauty

I really wanted to look like me (but on a good day!) on my wedding day so tried to keep my look very natural. Andrew is used to seeing me in little or no make up so I didn’t want to scare the living daylights out of him walking down the aisle looking like a total stranger! One of my lovely usherettes Eleanor is a dab hand with a blusher brush and did an amazing job applying my Bare Minerals make up.

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My hair was done by Sophia Mason who really got my brief of a rustic informal up-do. I decided to go a bit non-bridal with my bright red nails – thank heavens they were shellac as I was it was all hands on deck to set up the barn the morning of the wedding!

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A Girly Moment

I really wanted to buy my dress in Wales with my mum (being the only girl in a family full of big brothers) and so we eventually found ‘the one’ at High Society Bridal in Cowbridge. My Sassi Holford dress (Millie) wasn’t a style which I would have automatically picked out myself (being quite fitted), but it was suggested as a style which would suit my petite frame. I felt so comfortable the instant I put it on and adored the cap sleeve lace shrug and the gorgeous floral sash.

My day to day style is very casual with a bit 50’s thrown in and so I knew my friends would all be expecting a short prom style dress – so that was immediately struck off the list as being a bit too predictable! I think people were quite surprised that my dress was quite so traditional.

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Style And Comfort

My gorgeous shoes were by Rachel Simpson. The heel height was ideal for making my way round the farmyard without sinking into the grass! I can’t recommend them highly enough for style and comfort (although I did resort to my trusty red converse after dark!) As with my make up, I opted for very simple pearls for my jewellery including an antique pearl brooch on clipped to my BQ (my something old).

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Mis-matched

It was important for us that our ushers and usherettes weren’t completely uniform. We wanted them to retain their differences as much as possible and basically look quite informal. Ushers wore different tones of whatever grey suit they owned with a yellow based tie.

Our usherettes had an open brief for any style of colourful patterned summer dress which they felt comfortable in, inspired by the mis-matching patterns of our plentiful bunting and crockery. They found some gorgeous frocks, usherette Vicky was even inspired to design and make her own!

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Tour De France Inspired

Our theme really was just to reflect us, our ‘odd’ personalities and ecclectic tastes so the styling was purposefully a bit higgledy piggledy. One key influence was the Tour de France as we are both keen cyclists – it was only fitting as we shared our wedding day with the final stage of the Tour De France in which Bradley Wiggins became the first ever British winner! (it really was the best day of my husbands life!)

We have always loved the vibrance and quirky celebrations of the host towns along the route of the bike race so we picked a few features to try and channel that eccentric celebratory feeling! We adopted the key Tour De France jersey colours of yellow, green, white and red polka dots for our underlying colour palette, created hanging bike wheel photo-boards and with a little help from some very clever friends made our life sized bride and groom scarecrows which looked quite at home in the farmyard.

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Our table hosts were another talking point. We drafted in hand knitted characters to welcome our guests to their tables, each with an accompanying personalised story to tell. With regards to décor, the Mother of the Bride made hundred of metres of beautiful patterned bunting which looked amazing strewn across the roof beams in and around the barn and really created a beautiful celebratory setting.

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A Summer Flower Hotchpotch

Local florist Florartistics were brilliant and really embraced the mix’n’match, undone feeling that we wanted to go for with the flowers. We picked seasonal country flowers in a palette of yellow, green white and red which were styled together in a simple rustic way. We loved the idea that the flowers could have been swept up from the hedgerows and gardens of the surrounding area and placed directly in the mis-matching cut glass vases around the barn walls and tables.

We had everything from roses and dahlias to sunflowers, snap dragons and hypericum berries, brought together with several varieties of daisy which we also used for button holes, my hair and pew ends. My bouquet had a little of everything loosely tied up with ribbon, but to compliment their mismatched dresses, our usherettes had a different yellow flower each in a simple posy.

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Like Owning A Dog

Although we were really keen to personalise our ceremony with readings, it took us quite a while to find anything which wasn’t a bit too sentimental for our tastes. We eventually found a reading called ‘May Be’ (anon) and a poem called ‘Falling In Love Is Like Owning A Dog’ (Taylor Mali). Both very simple, quirky but beautiful in their own way. Music was another key feature. We spent a disproportionate amount of time going through our CD collection putting together a playlist of songs for the ceremony which were significant to our relationship.

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Praise You

Our wedding band Rollercoaster were awesome, even though it was a beautiful balmy summers evening, the dance floor was full all night! They played a brilliant set which catered for all tastes, finishing off with some expert DJ duties. Our official first dance was “Do you realise?” by the Flaming Lips, although we managed to clear the floor later on with our ‘second dance’, Fatboy Slim’s Praise You, complete with break dancing. Our outdoor games were another entertaining feature which couldn’t have worked better. From start to finish they were being enjoyed by kids, big kids and competitive uncles alike. Thank you Skittle Alley hire!

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Bottomless Ice Cream Cart

Our excellent caterer Just Jane really pulled together a superb spread. To go alongside our informal day, we opted for a hot canapé ‘walking starter’ with our welcome drinks of hedgerow fizz (elderflower cordial, berries and prosecco). This was followed by a delicious barbeque of summertime favourites served at table on gorgeous mis-matched vintage crockery (collected by myself with extra dinner plates supplied by Vintage Teas & RSVPs). After speeches our guests were ushered outside to enjoy our bottomless ice cream cart from the Matt Benecci Ice Cream Co. THE perfect pudding for a hot summer’s afternoon. As massive cheese freaks, we opted for an awesome cheese wedding cake by The Norbiton Fine Cheese Company for our wedding cake which handily provided the perfect cheese board for evening nibbles.

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As a keen amateur baker, I wasn’t going to be done out of sponge entirely however, so we also ran The Great Wedding Bake Off where friends and family members brought fabulous home made cakes for refuelling in the evening. They looked a picture on trestle tables on mismatching cake plates and cake stands. Contributors were awarded with their very own wedding bake off certificate and rosette!

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A Personalised Peg Memento

As graphic designers by trade, we designed and made all our printed stationery from save the date postcards through to the A2 table plan. As with most elements the look for our stationery was very informal – for example our wedding invite was a sweetie bag packed with hand drawn maps including curious details, drink vouchers, playful typography, quirky images, bright colours and somewhat tongue in cheek wording.

Our previously mentioned bunting and Bride and Groom scarecrows were other memorable home made features, perfect for creating guest photo opportunities and setting the scene.

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However I think the most memorable DIY feature of our day was the personalised peg portraits which we hand painted for each of our guest’s place settings. It was six months of work but the reactions from our guests made it well worth it. A significant number of guests now have peg profile pictures on Facebook which is high praise indeed – our peg wedding cake toppers still take pride of place on our fireplace!

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Stop The Clock

The best advice given to me was by a very wise friend who recommended taking a moment with my new husband, ideally when everyone is together enjoying the proceedings to just stand, look around and take stock of what you have achieved. Soak up being around all your loved ones together and give yourself a huge mental pat on the back for pulling together such a special day! Everyone tells you the day goes so fast, but it is quite unreal how fast it is all over so just stopping the clock to absorb such a special moment is priceless, it has certainly stayed with me.

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Click here & view all images from this wedding

Bridal Gown – Sassi Holford ‘Millie’ at High Society Bridal
Shoes – Rachel Simpson
Band – Rollercoaster
Outdoor Games – Skittle Alley Hire
Caterer – Just Jane
Vintage Crockery Hire – Vintage Teas & RSVPs
Ice Cream Cart – Matt Benecci Ice Cream Co.
Cake – The Norbiton Fine Cheese Company
Florist – Florartistics
Venue – Gate Street Barn
Photography – Anushe Low

Definitely higgledy piggledy. But SO MUCH fun.

I hope this wedding inspires you to go with your personalities for your big day lovelies.

Lots of love,
Fern x

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Country Garden Gorgeous.

We Heart Pictures

Tom & Hayley Married in July last year in Yorkshire with a traditional church ceremony followed by a reception at The General Tarleton.

There are some super cute ideas for you to steal…the table plan is beautiful and I’ve not seen one like it before.

I’m also loving a bride with a bit of bling. Hayleys dress has loads of delicate details and looks stunning. She also has super sparkly shoes too!

Country garden gorgeous

Hayley The Bride: I got my dress from Lace and Beaux Boutique in Holmfirth. The designer is Ellis Bridal. I just fell in love with the detail on the back as soon as I saw it. We were having a church ceremony so I wanted to feel like a traditional bride so a veil was a must for me. I bought it from the same boutique I got my dress from.

My shoes were super sparkly! Diamanté heels like Cinderella slippers but without the ugly sisters! I did my own make-up using Bare Minerals. My sister (and chief Bridesmaid) Abby is a hairdresser and so styled everyones hair from the groom to the entire bridal party.

Country garden gorgeous

Country Garden

We decided on a ‘country garden’ feel for all our flowers from the church to the reception. One of my mums best friends was the fabulous florist and was assisted by my mum with button holes and table flowers. We loved all the flowers and especially the table plan in the small plant pots.  

We stayed with the theme of ‘country garden’ for the room decor and the traditional look. We made little tea lights for the guest to light on the day but many have them in their houses as they thought they were favours. We also made East of India place settings which we pegged to the glasses. Each guest had their name individually stamped on the name tags. The table plan was left at the entrance to the room with table numbers and names inserted in small plant pots.

Country garden gorgeous

Versatile Maids

Tom and the groomsmen all hired suits from a superb tailor and hire company called Owen Scott in Huddersfield. Toms shoes were bought from Aldo.

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My maids all wore dresses from Two Birds that we found in Louella Bridal in Rawdon, Leeds. They were so versatile and allowed everyone to wear them in a way they found most comfortable.

Country garden gorgeous

We Heart Pictures

Photography was important to us and we knew that we didn’t want ‘traditional stand in a line pictures’. When we saw We Heart Pictures website we knew it was everything we wanted. We could not have been happier with the way pictures were taken on the day and the final images we received. We will treasure them forever. 

Country garden gorgeous

Vanila, Raspberry and Lemon

My mum kindly created our cake for us. Although lots of elements of our day were traditional, we didn’t want a traditional iced fruit cake and had seen a naked Victoria sponge cake in a magazine and thought that was perfect. There was a different flavour on each layer. We had vanilla, raspberry and lemon layers.

Country garden gorgeous

A Great Show

We were not sure what to have for entertainment and music. We don’t really go and watch live bands or music so didn’t know of any local bands and couldn’t afford Michael Buble! We decided to go for something we thought everyone might enjoy and join in with. After doing some research I found the Birmingham Blues Brothers on the internet and decided to book them. Everyone loved the show!

Country garden gorgeous

Have What You Want

Lots of people gave us advice and their own experiences from their wedding days but we still didn’t know what to expect. We both agree that each other made the day very special and the people around us made it a day we will never forget. We meet so many nice people on the journey of getting married; from the kind people at All Saints Church that made us very welcome to the manager at the General Tarleton.

Naked-cake-with-roses

It was such a relief to have someone at a venue actually interested in our day and what we wanted rather than what they thought we should have and how many bottles of Champagne we would be required to drink.

Our advice to anyone getting married is to have the things you want. If you are going on Honeymoon the day after your wedding, pack before unlike me that forgot the charger for the camera!

Country garden gorgeous

Click here & view all images from this wedding

Venue – General Tarleton
Boutique – Lace and Beaux
Groom – Owen Scott
Maids – Twobirds Bridesmaid
Photography – We Heart Pictures

How very pretty is the detail on Hayley’s dress? It fits her like a glove as well. Which is something I wanted to comment on about Tom’s suit as well. It shows if you want to hire you can get a suit that fits. He looks great!

How beautiful is the table plan? Told you it was beautiful didn’t I?

Lush car as well…how are you getting to your venue?

Becky
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