We met at primary school… a Welsh wedding

wedding blog photo (35)There’s nothing like a real love story to brighten up a cold morning… and Alice and Jamie’s story is a lovely one. Both living in London now, they went back to their childhood home of Wales to get married last year. Alice has written her own story of the wedding day which is as enchanting as the images of the wedding. And she looks so incredibly beautiful in lace and pearls…

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All the photographs are by Cambridge wedding photographer Jean-Luc Benazet. I have something very special to tell you about Jean-Luc at the end of this wedding blog, but for now I’ll leave you to read Alice and Jamie’s wedding story.


Bryngwyn Hall wedding: Alice and Jamie

wedding blog photo (33)“Even though Jamie and I live in London, we are both from the same area in Mid Wales (we met at primary school!) and knew we wanted to get married back there.

wedding blog photo (32)The weather on the day was perfect! We were so lucky, particularly at that time of the year. The morning was spent with respective families, getting ready. We had my two nephews (age 4) as page boys and my two nieces (age 2) as flower girls with my other older niece as bridesmaid.

wedding blog photo (31)The church service was beautiful. The vicar was very personable and patient – particularly when, halfway through my vows, I was feeling very emotional and found it difficult to get my words out. We had the hymns ‘Make me a channel of your peace’, ‘All things bright and beautiful’ and ‘Cym Rhondda  -Bread of Heaven’. A friend played ‘Blackbird’ on his guitar during the signing of the register.

wedding blog photo (30)Jamie’s suit, including tie, handkerchief and waistcoat were from Favourbrooks, Jermyn st, London. His shoes were from Loakes, and his shirt from Emma Willis.

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wedding blog photo (28)My shoes were my very first wedding purchase! I saw them in a magazine and knew they were the ones-whatever my style of dress was going to be! The brand is ‘Irregular Choice’ from Schu online.

My earrings were pearl and diamond from John Lewis, my hair accessory was borrowed from my lovely friend Laura, who had purchased and worn it for her own wedding (it’s a hairband but my hairdresser, Bonnie, managed to cleverly place it in my hair like a clip). Jamie bought me the pearl necklace as a wedding present. The pearl bracelet (my Mum’s) was a last-minute addition about half an hour before going to church! My ‘something blue’ was a sapphire ring that belonged to my Nanna.

wedding blog photo (27)My wedding dress: Jim Hjelm 507 from Blackburn Bridals in Blackheath, London. Found after much searching! Cape over dress was from Phase Eight, Debenhams. Because of the unusual dress material, I found it really hard to find something to complement it. The cape was a lucky find and only tried it on on my final dress fitting- a week before the wedding. I was pleased that it worked!

wedding blog photo (26)My local church-2 minutes from my parents’ house- was our first choice for the service but it was more difficult to find a reception venue. We just wanted a marquee in a field somewhere to throw a good party! We realised quite soon that this wasn’t that practical and so when Bryngwyn Hall was mentioned to us, we knew we had found the perfect place! Beautiful grounds in which to put up a marque but knew we wanted something a bit different… Then we found our beautiful teepees with Papakata.

wedding blog photo (25)As we drove up to the venue, we knew it was going to be a very special day. The tepees looked amazing against the backdrop of the hall and the countryside, the sun was shining, jazz music was playing and the champagne was already flowing. It was great to see the guests’ faces as they arrived at the teepees, as we had kept the choice of venue secret.

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We were lucky with the weather to be able to have our photos taken outside. Following on from that, we joined our guests at the teepees and sat down about an hour later to a gorgeous meal.

The florists, Jenni and Val, had done such an amazing job; with all the flowers, but particularly the table centrepieces with the lanterns were beautiful.

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wedding blog photo (16)We wanted to have a welsh touch somewhere and the heart welsh cake favours, made by my mum and sister, were perfect!

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Wedding day advice:

A clichéd one but enjoy every moment. For us, that included the planning itself. I loved researching, finding and making (with help from friends and family). The day itself goes by so quickly and we tried to savour every moment.

Also, try not to get stressed about it all. We both agreed, that if anything on the day wasn’t running exactly as we had planned, then it shouldn’t affect the enjoyment of the day. And it didn’t!


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Memorable wedding day moments:

Having my nieces and nephews walking down the aisle with me, all dressed up and looking gorgeous. A very special moment.

Saying our vows – a very over-whelming and emotional moment.

Our first dance and being joined by family and friends on the dancefloor at the end of the song.

One of the ushers dressing up and dancing as Beyonce later on in the evening! On my hen night, my friends had dressed me up as Beyonce (though not in the glamorous sense!) and my sister thought it would be great for Beyonce to make an appearance at the wedding party!

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wedding blog photo (2)Our first dance was ‘One day like this’ by Elbow. We had taken a couple of dance classes in the weeks beforehand, but ended up forgetting most of it on the evening and just doing it freestyle – it actually worked out better and didn’t involve too much shuffling! Everyone came onto the dance floor for the end of the song. A really lovely, emotional moment.

wedding blog photo (36)The band and DJ were fantastic and got everyone onto the dance floor. I couldn’t believe it when the music ended at the end of the night – the evening had just flown by!

A very special memorable day shared with very special people.

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Alice and Jamie’s recommended wedding suppliers:

Jean Luc Benazet Photography After seeing the photos taken at a relative’s wedding, by Jean Luc, we booked him for his amazing shots and his calm manner.

‘PapaKåta’ Amazing tents from a friendly, professional team.

The Soul Jets band Fantastic music from a band that gets everyone up on their feet.

Roslin Catering Gorgeous food and great service

Tim’s Tipples very good slick service. The bar staff and catering team worked with each other to ensure everything ran smoothly.

Blackburn Bridal A place where I was made to feel very special. And where I found my beautiful dress!

Bryngwyn Hall (our wonderful venue)

Wedding car Our driver, Frank, was a lovely guy.

Jenni and Val Florists (details on request) – Two very lovely ladies who spent a lot of time and effort, to ensure that everything was just right.

On English Wedding blog tomorrow

I promised to tell you something special about Alice and Jamie’s wedding photographer Jean-Luc Benazet – and I’m very excited to be sharing his own wedding on the blog tomorrow! It’s always great to see who a wedding photographer chooses for his or her own wedding photography… but you’ll have to wait for the morning to find out.

Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.



  • @LoveYouBlog
    8 years ago

    What a beautiful wedding. I love the lace and the pearls together and the colours in the flowers are gorgeous. The reception looked so intimate and warm! x

    • Claire
      8 years ago

      It was really beautiful wasn’t it – the smiles just got me too. Glad you enjoyed the post, thank you for commenting! xxx

  • What a fab wedding, the tents are amazing! Alice’s dress is just divine, the whole day looked like a lot of fun. 😀 T x

    • Claire
      8 years ago

      Thanks Tory for your comment, Alice’s dress is beautiful isn’t it. And yeah, tipis always make a real impression – I love a tipi wedding!

  • Hannah Webster
    8 years ago

    Flippin’eck. Stunning bride alert! Such a lovely day by the looks of things. Very nice. x

    • Claire
      8 years ago

      You’re right there Hannah! Alice reminds me of someone famous, but I can’t think who… a beautiful actress but I can’t place her. She’s sooooooooooo pretty. x

  • Geoff
    8 years ago

    Nice shooting Jean-Luc! A very heart warming wedding. The Tipi looked amazing and I just love the shot of the groom and groomsmen with the shadows.
    Lovely blog post and words as per usual Claire.
    Looking forward to seeing Jean-Luc and Liza’s wedding! 🙂
    Geoff x

  • Jenny McAvoy
    8 years ago

    LOVE the beautiful dress, I want a tipi party and the little don’ts for wives and husbands are lovely

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