If you’re a music loving kinda gal or boy then you might be more than a little envious of the musical talent that sang Kalin and Jason through their big day in the hills of Tuscany. Oh yes, did I forget to mention that this lucky pair also had dazzling sunshine and picturesque olive groves to contend with as well? I know! Immense.
This black tie, musical big day has exquisite details in abundance and then some. Kalin’s delicate and elegant Sophia Tolli dress is the perfect frock for Artimino’s age-old glamour and I adore their travel-inspired theme which pays homage to the way in which the two met.
Oh and they also had a masquerade ball the night before the wedding too! Now I’d like to have seen some photos of that!!
In no specific order of brilliance… Jenny Packham, Lampshades, Clark Kent Specs, Chris Barber Photography. Individually these are all fairly cool things but when these things combine the effect is a bit like when Eric eats a banana…
Allow Nat to explain:
Hit The Jackpot
Nat The Bride: Location was a major thing for myself and Martin. When we found Lyde Court we knew we’d hit the jackpot, the 17th century stone barn had a lovely church feel to it. After the wedding the venue was quickly transformed for the wedding breakfast. The thing I loved most about the venue were the antique goods such as higgledy piggledy chairs that didn’t match and old working gramophone, this fitted perfectly with our rustic theme and gave us a good starting point for decoration ideas.
Hollywood Vintage Glamour
After spending what felt like an eternity on pinterest I finally settled for a bit of Hollywood vintage glamour, I’d tried a couple of hairstyles previously and they just looked too contrived, I didn’t want to be unrecognisable on the wedding day and just wanted to look like myself but a much better version 🙂 I decided to do my make-up myself as it’s quite a personal thing, it’s something us girls do every day so I knew I could do it if I just took my time. I went to MAC and got some great advice from the girls there, I brought prep + prime skin smoother, skin finish natural powder, false lash waterproof mascara, Bobby Brown SKIN foundation and ILLAMAQUA matt lipstick – colour Sangers. My make-up stayed put for most of the day till the dancing begun towards the end of the evening and by that point I was having too much fun to care if my lippy was still on. My hair was done by Hilarys Wedlocks
A Vintage Feel
My dress was from The Wedding Club and the designer was Jenny Packham, I hadn’t intended to spend so much money on a dress but as soon as I tried one of her dresses on it made me go a bit funny… in a good way. It had a vintage feel and was fitted then flared below the hips. Having a bit of junk in the trunk put me off trying on fitted dresses but as soon as I tried on a Jenny Packham I knew it was ‘the one’. The way the dress was cut and the plunging neckline made me feel ultra feminine on the wedding day. I brought vintage 1920’s silver clip on earrings from the Jewellery Quarter and shoes from untold which had a metallic fleck in the fabric which tied in with the beading on the waist band.
Grey & Navy
The bridesmaids dresses were a marl grey in chiffon and lace from Warehouse, we took the colour theme from our invites as a starting point and worked from there, the ladies looked beautiful. For the boys we thought it would be nice to have a contrasting colour so we went for dark grey suits and baby blue ties. Martin always wanted to have a bespoke suit so decided to have classic/country themed design made by Austin Reed.
Shades & Poms
Soft pink and marl grey were the colours which were taken from our wedding stationery. We had a vintage theme which was the common thread which ran through the decor, we hung a mixture of decorated lampshades and floral paper pom poms from 45ft wooden beams, it was like mission impossible the day before to get these over the beams, but with fishing line, a couple of stones and 5 long hours of perseverance we managed to get them up. It looked amazing and was well worth the effort.
The table flowers were grown and arranged by my mum, we wanted bunches of gypsophila in old wine decanters. After months of my mum tending to the flowers they decided to bloom early then flopped 🙁 We didn’t have as much as we thought we would so ended up doing a mad dash a couple of days before to various places to buy flowers… they looked beautiful in the end. My advice if you want to do things on the cheap then the flower markets or garden centres are a great place. My bouquet and the bridesmaids were silk flowers from Country Baskets again mum stepped in and got handy with the arrangements and ribbon.
Music was really important, we didn’t want the norm so we had a mixture to get across the sentiment of what we would be feeling at each point. Entrance music was Johnny Cash Rose of my Heart… I thought I might need ear protectors to stop me from crying all the way down the aisle but I managed to hold it together, our exit music was Hot Diggety by Perry Como which has got a more of a celebratory feel. I think my favourite part of the ceremony was first seeing Martins face with his mouth wide open, Martin saying “I give you this thing” instead of ring and of course when they pronounced us man and wife. My lovely friend Christine did a reading by Dr Seuss oh the places you’ll go, she did an amazing job.
Bring Me Sunshine
The first dance was Bring me sunshine by Morecambe and Wise this sums our relationship up perfectly as we really are partners in crime. For our evening entertainment we hired a SKA band and then we had a DJ later in the evening. The band Rudie And The Revolvers were fantastic and had everyone up and dancing I can’t rate them enough. Later in the evening my Dad was up and bopping to Groove Armada and Basement Jaxx… I never thought I would see that!
Canopes and the wedding breakfast were created by Taste Menu locally sourced bangers and mash was definitely a crowd pleaser. For dessert we had Lou Almonds amazing jam jar cup cakes with layered sponge, chocolate ganache and butter cream… yum yum! Lou also created our wedding cake Our wedding favours were homemade raspberry gin made by Martin, these also doubled up as place settings on tables. They went down a storm, with a lot of wedding favours they get left on tables but the proof was in the drinking, there wasn’t a drop left and people were asking if we had any more 🙂
Tone & Colour
As a Graphic Designer the wedding stationery was particularly important as this set the tone and colour for the wedding. It was a incredibly personal project and I absolutely loved having creative control. I had so many compliments about the stationery it gave me the incentive to start my own business – Chipper & Dandy My website will be up and running very soon with an expanding range of boutique style invitations, stationery and decoration. For the decoration we scoured ebay, charity shops and car boot sales for vintage lampshades, wine decanters and picture frames, the beauty of the venue with nothing matching meant we didn’t have every table the same which made it more personal. Table centrepieces were old wine bottles with vintage lampshades on top and labels created by Chipper & Dandy along with the rose paper bunting.
We had such an amazing day everything was perfect, it was informal, quirky and relaxed. In hindsight I think I gave myself too much to do with all the handmade items as I wanted to have creative control. I would say delegate, people like to be involved and will be happy that they’ve helped you. Get comfortable shoes, my heels were far to tall, my feet were still hurting 2 days after from all the dancing. I hope that we’ve given you a bit of inspiration for your wedding day. Good luck beautiful brides!
Not to bang on about stationery yet again but I blomin’ love it and it is so important, as Nat points out, in setting up the day. Let’s face it – it’s the first and probabaly only clue your guests will receive about the theme, dress code, style and mood of your shindig before they turn up on the big day it’s self. Check out Nat’s work at Chipper & Dandy.
Of course different people have different priorities and that’s what makes the world such a beautiful and interesting place to live… But for me it’s all about the Stationery. STATIONERY!!!! it’s great. Of course you do need a kick-ass dress too. Check.
And an amazing band… Check. And great person incharge of the magic picture box… Check.
The ceremony went like a dream, we had readings from two of our oldest friends …who both know each other from primary school too! Andy read an extract from Captain Corelli’s Mandolin and Rach lightened the mood with a humorous poem by Bee Rawlinson.
We said our vows…I cried again!
We sat and signed the register… girls if I have one piece of advice… look at yourself in a mirror when you sit down in your dress, I tested sitting down to see if I could, but didn’t see myself… I know I wanted cleavage… but not so much it was indecent! Those pics, unfortunately won’t be making the album!
I felt like I was in a film walking out through the guard of honour, mum being mum had made and handed out dozens of confetti bags full to the brim! It was a moment to remember when everyone cheered and gathered round to wish us well. We couldn’t help but feel a bit overwhelmed by everyone’s kindness and with the Pimms flowing the day was off to the most perfect start.
Keep The Weather At Bay
Anna our photographer, and now friend, did an amazing job of capturing all the moments. I had asked for as few group, posed pics as possible so we spent about half an hour having group shots and then managed to get some time as a couple having some fab pics with Anna. Gav one of our friends did a wonderful job of keeping the weather at bay with golfing umbrellas… which made for some equally brilliant pics!
We had the most scrumptious wedding breakfast ever! I know I would say that, but it really was gorgeous and we’ve had so many compliments about the food… we took the risky approach of having salmon, but people loved that it was something different, Jenkinsons the caterers did an amazing job! In fact I was so determined I was going to eat my chocolate trio of desserts, I trooped off to the ladies with mum to loosen my dress so that I could fit it all in!
Plane To See
I decided to design all of the stationery for the day and wanted to make everything personal to us… So each persons menu could be folded into a paper plane (with instructions on the reverse)…this resulted in all sorts of competitions during dinner! The paper plane theme continued, with miniature planes for the guests to sign… I have assembled the planes into a picture for us to have in our new house in Anglesey. After having such great feedback on the stationery from the wedding I decided to take the plunge and set up love-doodle which I am hopeful will ‘take off’ (terrible pun I know!) and sustain me whilst I follow Jon around the country!
After dinner the speeches commenced, all of the boys did an incredible job and had people in hysterics especially when Jons dad mentioned how Jon and I make such a great threesome with his brother, completely unaware of what he was implying, the room erupted with laughter!
I had planned the wedding to within an inch of its life … my sister knew this, so she decided to surprise me by doing the most perfect speech, it was beautiful and a memory I’ll treasure forever.
After the speeches the evening guests began to fill the barn and we gathered round to cut Jons mum’s enormous cake she had made! I was gutted I didn’t get to have any on the day…though we have two tiers left, wrapped ready for another special occasion.
It took us ages to decide on a first dance song… we like lots of different music but none of it really suited the occasion of our wedding. Then one day when we were in the car, Maroon 5, Sunday Morning came on…it was perfect! They were the first band we’d seen together and the lyrics were perfect as we’d spent so many Sundays leaving each other (because of Jon being in the RAF) ‘Driving slow on Sunday morning, I never want to leave’ was a lyric that really meant everything to us… we were kicking ourselves that we hadn’t thought of the song sooner! Ashmore acoustics; a fab band we’d seen at a friends wedding rehearsed the song and played it for us.. they had everyone welling up, it was really the most amazing moment. The Ashmore guys were so energetic and engaging, it wasn’t long before everyone was cutting some shapes on the dance floor.
Man & Wife
We danced the night away, enjoying ourselves with all our amazing friends and family. I really didn’t want it to end, but soon enough we found ourselves heading back the Granary. We stayed up until 5am! No, not doing what you’re thinking! We were re-living every moment, chatting into the small hours with salt & vinegar Pringles, a cup of tea and snuggled up together, best friends and now man & wife. The perfect end to the most perfect day and the start of something very special.
Yay! Congratulations Hannah and Jon! I am so pleased for you both that now you are married you’ll be living together and there won’t be quite so many of those “Sunday mornings”… A beautifully executed shindig Hannah, all of your meticulous planning has totally been worth it.
It’s been a pleasure having you write for RMW and I hope your stationery business Love Doodle really does fly. All of your wedding stationery looks fab, I particularly love the elegant and clean design of the table plan.
Once again congratulations, and all the best for your future together with Jon.
Adam here… Introducing the next w-day from our last bunch of lovely real bride ladies, today is the turn of Hannah who married Jon on April 13th.
If you are new RMW reader unfamiliar with Hannah’s journey so far then read no further!!! Firstly read Hannahs whole planning story right here. Go. Now. Read…. and then come back for this, the penultimate post from Hannah…
Hannah: Hello again.. It’s been a while! I can’t believe that I’m now writing this post as a married lady. It’s been a wonderful year or so and great fun having you all along for the ride. Not only have we had a wonderful wedding, but we’ve made so many friends because of this blog and there are lots more exciting things to come, with Jon & I moving to RAF Valley soon and we’re getting a puppy called Bear! …
I’m one contented wifey!
But before I go into any detail, I have to say a huge thank you to everyone who helped us during the run up and on the big day itself. Family and friends were just amazing, as were all the suppliers who have now become friends. It’s been a really great time, and I’m pleased to report that I managed to take a step back and enjoy it all.
The Night Before
So the big day actually started the night before, Jon and I had agreed that from midday on the Friday we wouldn’t speak to, or see each other until the ceremony the next day. He had all his friends over to our house and I left him under instruction not to trash the place, and to only have a beer or two. I know what the boys are like.
I was joined that evening by all my family from all over the country, as well as most of Jon’s. It was lovely to get everyone together and to let relations have a good old chin wag. We rented out the Granary a beautiful boutique barn style hotel. They were very accommodating and laid on a wonderful spread.
A Teary Start
In the run up to the wedding I worried over sleep… Or the lack of it and read up on all sorts of ‘just incase’ remedies but in the end I decided that sleep was just not going to happen….I had resigned myself to that fact, but to my surprise & delight I woke up at 3.30am having slept from 11! So I got up, had a cup of tea and read the lovely note Jon had left me… needless to say the day started with tears!
I adorned my new hush pyjamas, ate a full English, gathered the bridesmaids and headed off to Dodford Manor, not before being jumped up at by an over excited springer puppy…so much for new white pj’s!
All Hands On Dec
We got to Dodford Manor and it was all hands on deck to get the lovely barn dressed. We made 8ft blossom trees that were wheeled in, huge vases of lovely wild flowers from Juliet at Thoughtful Flowers, as well as hanging the 200m of bunting! At Dodford theres a lovely dressing room to get ready in, and it has a one way glass window into the ceremony barn. It was so humbling to see everyone dashing around putting the finishing touches on everything. Over in the main dinning room, there was a small army of people all working so hard to make sure the room was ready, we really do owe them all.
A while ago I wrote about how nice it was to see all the family making so much of an effort making all manor of homemade goodies. Well I can honestly say that when I walked into the room, it took my breath away. All the beautiful bunting my mum had made had been diligently hung up, the tables looked perfect with the wild flowers on. Jon’s mum had got the cake in place, (no small feat I can assure you!) His dad, who had hand built the sweet trolley was carefully filling glass jars with pink and white sweets. What a cool set of in-laws. I felt this huge sense of satisfaction that we really had put our own stamp on the day.
Meanwhile, Jon was at our house with his brother, the best man and all his close friends, no doubt not even awake yet. Unbeknown to my soon-to-be hubby I had been squirrelling away a bit of cash at the end of every month for the past year or so in order to buy him a pressie. I felt a little bad as we had agreed no gifts, only a letter on the day. Being a pilot I knew he’d always wanted a particular type of watch. There’s a whole other story to how I found out the right one and eventually how I got my hands on it, but suffice to say I was relived he hadn’t discovered it hidden away at home.
Play It Cool
With such a nice pressie in store, I couldn’t resist a little wind up, cruel I know, but it’s normally him dishing out all the banter. My mum called Jon to tell him that it was all panic stations at the venue and that he urgently needed to get something out of the cupboard upstairs. He was on speaker phone, I could tell it had got to him, but he was trying to play it cool especially in front of his friends! After a bit more fun and games, we led him to the parcel, which he duly unwrapped and I duly cried..again.
The next time I checked my watch I couldn’t believe it was mid day, I hurried back to the bridal room and put the peep hole to good use. It was so nice seeing everyone arrive, they all looked lovely and in good spirits.
Here Come The Boys
Then the RAF boys turned out, all looking very dashing in their uniform to be followed by my very soon to be husband. He looked very handsome and suddenly it all started to feel very real.
Jodie did a brilliant job of making me, the mums and all the bridesmaids look gorgeous and Nikki’s calm attitude to making hair she’d never seen before into fabulous creations really did amaze me…I still don’t know how they managed to get 4 bridesmaids me, my Mum and my Auntie Sarah all ready in less than 4 hours… we were even half an hour early!
Georgie, the youngest bridesmaid led the others down the isle, she looked absolutely adorable. Followed by Jade and my cousin, Sarah and then my sister and oldest friend, Rach. Kissing you from Romeo & Juliet was being played beautifully on the piano, echoing around the barn… I took a breath, linked arms with my dad and stepped out into the smiling faces of all my friends and family…I cried..again.