This morning’s wedding makes me very happy indeed. The pastel colour scheme is just so pretty. It draws together two venues and their natural surroundings, and Nancy’s vintage dress perfectly. The whole wedding has a nostalgic and dreamy quality to it – yet still manages to be stylish and contemporary.
I think it’s down to Nancy’s creativity and the wonderful photography from Mr Sleeve. Nancy is a make up artist (there are lots of great product recommendations for you, don’t worry). She did her own make up on the day and totally nailed the Audrey Hepburn meets Zooey Deschanel look she was going for. And Nancy has the delicate bone structure to rival both ladies.
And if you love wild flower meadow couple shots then you are in for a treat.
Nancy The Bride: We chose beautiful Tudor house, Bramall Hall, as our ceremony venue as it’s close to our home in Cheshire and somewhere Elliot knew well as a child, so it had an emotional attachment. We also wanted somewhere with beautiful grounds for our family shots.
Our reception was at Adlington Village Hall. I stumbled across this newly refurbished but ‘classic’ looking village Hall after my first few party venue plans fell through for various reasons! The village hall was perfect for us – cute, vintage and totally flexible to let us bring all our own suppliers in. We bought a marquee to extend the space and used fake grass, deck chairs, garden benches and a vintage dansette record player to create a secret garden party feel.
As a professional Make Up Artist, I wanted my makeup to look peachy and fresh with a retro feline eye – my inspiration was Audrey Hepburn meets Zooey Deschanel. Products I recommend: Illamasqua Hyrda Veil for a long lasting but hydrating primer. Mac fix fluid foundation buffed in gently for a lightweight but long lasting finish. Mac liquid last liner survived any tears and smudging!
My hair idea came from working on fashion shoots and was a style I had tried on a shoot – my long hair was expertly braided over the top of the head like a headband, the rest was plaited and pinned up at back. I kept my full fringe as it’s so me. The flower gypsophila was pinned in my hair like a halo adding a beautiful vintage feel.
I knew I wanted a vintage dress so instead of doing the rounds of bridal shops I decided to look straight on eBay to find a really unique piece. There were hundreds. After three months of searching and trawling (and a brief fling with a lace 50’s tea length dress) I found THE ONE; a 1970’s full length, vintage lace, slightly blush/cream dress by the designer Frank Usher. I instantly knew I loved it and it would fit in with both of my venues and my personal style. After a professional dry clean and some minor alterations I was over the moon at my vintage find.
I also wore a single tier vintage net veil. The creamy colour matched my dress perfectly, it was another eBay find. My shoes were from a collection at Dune, nude with a small clear block heel, simple and beautiful. I wore small pearl stud earrings from Manchester boutique Jenny Jones, my Grandmothers gold locket bracelet and my Mum’s blue sapphire star necklace. My bag was a rose gold solid clutch bag from French Connection.
For decoration we had loads of beautiful vintage-style cotton floral bunting zig-zagged across the village hall. Pearl effect balloons in big bunches, festoon and fairy lights decorated the hall and our party marquee. Charity shop found lace net curtains were cut to make table cloths with floral material adding some colour. White lanterns with candles were hung from the marquee ceiling to float over the tables. Vintage tea cups with stripy boiled sweets or tea lights decorated the tables.
My florist Jane was recommended by Elliot’s mum as they work together in a local garden centre, it was another example of keeping all our friends and family involved in our day. My medium sized bouquet included vintage roses in cream and peach, gypsophila to match my hair flowers and lavender to tie in with the blue of the groomsmen’s suits and give a lovey scent.
We went for an early ceremony – I’m really glad as our day felt like it lasted that bit longer. I arrived in a navy blue vintage 1970s Rolls Royce with my Mum and Dad, whilst my bridesmaids followed in a blue and white VW Campervan, both were lent to us by our friend Rob who collects classic cars. As I walked into the hall Elliot’s good friends Dan and Rob played an instrumental version of our first dance Sister Sledge’s Thinking Of You. We kept the ceremony short and sweet – but we both felt the emotion of the words and had plenty of little laughs too.
My brother Dan filmed it using a Super8 app – to capture the ceremony, it’s an amazing alternative as the real super8 film is now pretty much discontinued. Afterwards we had a champagne reception and our group and family shots in the beautiful grounds of the Hall. Steve also found a secret wild flower meadow which some of my favourite shots are from.
Our evening food was the amazing ‘Margo and Rita’ food van serving Mexican street food to our guests – a choice of spicy cactus or beef tacos, they bought more bunting and lights adding to the festival atmosphere. Our evening bar was set up by some good friends who manage a bar in Chorlton Manchester, they made us special Mr & Mrs cocktails and had loads of local ales and beers on offer.
I tried to do as much DIY as possible, and made the invites, name settings, jam jar vases and table plan. Each guests name was hand written on a cream luggage tag, I bought 75 small glass bottles and attached each tag to a bottle. In the bottle we put a raffle ticket. After the speeches we raffled off chocolate and sweets for our younger guests and a bar tab too!
Don’t be put off if you don’t want to wait around – we got married 9 months after we got engaged. If you have a vintage dress you want to get dry cleaned don’t mention the ‘W’ word – I said mine was a party dress and saved £100. Don’t settle for a package deal if it’s not you – look for quirky venues for your party, they are usually really cheap too. Buy instead of hire, we have managed to re sell things like chair covers, our marquee and decorations – all of which were expensive to hire. Ask your mates for favours, we couldn’t have had our day without our friends and family pitching in and it made it so much more special and unique.
My husband picking me up and carrying me over the threshold at the village hall – it was an entrance! After the meal I pulled out cowboy and cowgirl fancy dress outfits I’d bought for all our guests under 10yrs old. They loved it and it was really funny seeing them all dressed up together. We asked all our family members for a picture from their wedding day. As we started to eat we had them on loop on the village hall’s OHP, everyone was ooohing and ahhhhing and it gave it another personal touch. For the evening I put together a suitcase with wigs etc and got Elliot’s daughter Maisie to take pictures with an instamatic Polaroid camera – there are so many brilliant pictures, I’ve put them all in a big frame at home and it saved us loads on hiring a photo booth too.