Morning lovely readers. You know it is going to be a good day when you can start off with a wedding at Aynhoe Park, my all time favourite wedding venue.
“With a wedding venue like Aynhoe Park we were spoilt for choice when it came to opting for a theme for our wedding. We wanted to avoid clichés and went for something very natural – using trees in the Orangery, and twigs on our wedding cake combined with antique peacocks on our stationery and rich jewel colours in our floral arrangements. We shaped our colour scheme around the eclectic backdrop of our wedding venue, which worked fabulously!”
I love Anna’s tip on the favours, sometimes it really is fine not to give anything to your guests other than a bloody good time!
(PS you may notice a few changes, finally made the images larger as requested by you guys, I will spend today tweaking the final bits but I hope you like the new layout?)
Photography by Lucy Davenport
Mother of the Bride: Irrestistible
Groom – Bespoke Suit and Shirt Cad and the Dandy / Shoes Jeffrey West
Groomsmen’s outfits/accessories: Ted Baker
Everybody told me that the day would go so quickly and said I should try to enjoy every moment… and that’s just what I did! As a very organised bride, I felt quite overwhelmed when I walked down the aisle – I’d been so focussed on seeing my husband-to-be at the other end of aisle that I’d forgotten that all our guests would be there too! Seeing Jamie waiting for me was magical, and all the surprises – hearing our readers delivering their poems for the first time, saying our vows and giving and receiving our rings was even more special than I had imagined. The day felt truly complete when I welcomed our guests to our reception – it was the first time I’d said ‘Hello’ to them all having been isolated while getting ready. It’s such a warm and happy feeling knowing they’ve all come to celebrate your special day. And we have such beautiful photographs which have captured these magic moments
Against the advice we’d received from magazines we didn’t have a strict overall budget. We did however have a comprehensive planning list and knew what we’d be spending money on from the start. We knew what we felt were reasonable costs and where we felt comfortable being lavish and what we thought would be a waste of money. We worked closely with suppliers to ensure that costs were kept to a minimum. We said no to candles and flower petals in the ceremony room as they’d be cleared away very quickly and would be a wasted expense which meant we could spend more of our floristry budget on six-foot silver birch trees!
We spent hours discussing the various options for favours – the best we’d received at other people’s weddings had been Homemade Jam made with peaches from the Mother of the Bride’s garden, and tea light candles to guide you home at the end of the night, but as many of our guests were staying on site we thought it unnecessary. In the end we decided to forget favours altogether – we gave our parents framed photographs from our engagement shoot, the bridesmaids got a pearl bracelets, and the best men and ushers received manicure kits from Taylors of Old Bondstreet. Our favour to our guests was a darn good knees-up in a fabulous venue. I think that spending our money wisely on quality food and wine was appreciated more than a little trinket on the table
We run our own business, so taking time off is always challenging. We decided to mini-moon to The Secret Garden Suite at Barnsley House http://www.barnsleyhouse.com/and have planned a honeymoon to San Francisco and Hawaii later in the year.
Start with the venue and work with what you’ve got. We picked Aynhoe Park because it was anything but a blank canvas. Spend your money on the big things – the photographer, the food and wine, and making yourself feel fabulous – it’s your day after all! I tried on every wedding dress in the country – or at least that’s what it felt like – and I refused to give in until I found ‘the one’ – much to my bridesmaids’ irritation, but it was the best decision I made!