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Alexandra and Lewis’s classic English wedding at Shilstone House, with Evolve Photography

When Alexandra met Lewis she was dressed as a devil. He was wearing “a 12 year old’s skeleton suit”… and they fell in love! They were married in June and their wedding is one of the loveliest classic English weddings I’ve seen. Alexandra looks divine in a Sassi Holford gown while Lewis is fabulous in a Reiss suit. Their theme was vintage travel, styled around a red post box which I love.

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With stationery by Lucy Says I Do and fabulous flowers by Caroline Hodges, the styling of this lovely Devon wedding is classy and colourful. I love all the little details – and the portraits of gorgeous Alexandra and Lewis are just so romantic!

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Huge thanks to my lovely friend Mark from Evolve Photography in Devon for sharing images with us, and of course to Alexandra and Lewis for telling us all about their day.

Find out more about the fabulous Evolve Photography here:

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Feast your eyes on this morning’s loveliness: red roses, classic romance, a fabulous English wedding venue, Sassi gown, sunshine and showers (remember June?!) and the most adorable couple you’ll see. Enjoy.

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Our wedding report: Alexandra and Lewis

Wedding photographer’s website:

http://www.evolvephoto.co.uk/

Were you pleased with your wedding photographer?

Mark was everything we could have hoped for and more, he ‘got’ our style without us even having to say anything. I kept worrying afterwards ‘I should have asked him to take a photo of that’ but when the photos came through he of course already had! As an added bonus he’s a lovely guy who made us feel instantly at ease. I never felt like we were posing for ages on the day or constantly being dragged off for photos. In fact we barely noticed he was there!

Wedding venue:

Shilstone House, Modbury, Devon

Can you describe your wedding in a single sentence?

I know everybody must say this, but it truly was the best day of our lives and felt like a dream that was over too soon.

What was your reaction to seeing your wedding photos for the first time?

We were completely lost for words and both started crying/re-living the day all over again…they were so beautiful, and captured the style, the people and the emotions perfectly.

Your wedding style and theme:

Classic/Romantic + Vintage/Travel (Postcards) with a pillar box red and ivory colour scheme

Any happy tears on the day?

When I saw my 99 year old grandpa as I walked down the aisle in the church in the village where he celebrated his honeymoon with my grandma in 1939. When my brother sang a song he’d written for us as our first dance. And all the speeches!

How did the two of you meet?

I used to work with someone whose boyfriend works with Lewis, she had already met him and told me one day she’d met the male version of me! A few months later they set us up at a Halloween party. I was dressed as a devil and he was in a 12 year old’s skeleton suit. It was all very school disco!

How long did you spend planning your wedding?

11 months

Best bit of budget advice?

Excel spreadsheets! Just keep track of everything you’re spending, what has VAT included, what doesn’t, your per head cost etc. That way you won’t spiral out of control and if parents are helping to pay for it you can be really transparent and honest about where their money is going. Also pull in as many favours as you can, be crafty and get mums to bake, make bunting – it really does help! And lastly spread costs throughout the planning time so they don’t all come at once. In the beginning there will be lots of deposits. At the end it will be per head payments to the venue.

Wedding invitations and on the day stationery:

All our stationery was found at notonthehighstreet.com through an independent seller called ‘Lucy Says I Do’ – we corresponded frequently and she created bespoke items for us so that everything matched our vintage luggage tag and postcard style!

Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?

Yes but gradually! It’s such a cliché but it was the first dress I tried on picked for me by the lovely assistant. It was a good starting point she said, as it was very simple, but after going to a few other shops I couldn’t get it out of my mind. We went back for a second try and that was it – I was in love!

Wedding dress designer and bridal boutique:

Sassi Holford bespoke ‘Camilla’ from Ellie Sanderson Boutique in Oxford

Glitz and sparkle: the bride’s accessories:

Sassi Holford Sash, Diamond earrings from Waterman’s Banbury, Tiffany diamond and platinum engagement and wedding rings, pearl bracelet borrowed from my mum, Pearl and diamond necklace Ivory & Co, garter Laura George

The groom wore:

Grey 3 piece suit from Reiss, Russell and Bromley shoes, Jasper Conran tie, white shirt M&S

Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?

Red chiffon dress from Debut @ Debenhams

Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?

Professional hair and make-up artist Sarah Case

Wedding flowers:

Caroline Hodges – red and white spray roses, ivory hydrangea heads, sweet William, gypsophila

What do you remember most about the wedding ceremony?

Getting out of the car after it had stopped raining to a patch of blue sky over the church. My Dad walking me down the aisle – a very special moment obviously. And finally getting into our amazing e-type jag to drive away around the corner and have to put the roof down as it just started raining again!

Wedding readings?

Song: Sweetest Love by John Donne and Colossians 3:12-19

General styling – did your venue need much decoration?

Decorating the marquee was a difficult task as it was a pretty vast space, but we hired vintage furniture and suitcases to dot around, alongside lots of other props I’d either made or collected in the months leading up to the big day. We decided on a vintage travel theme, mainly because our save the date cards were luggage labels with red/white butchers string so the idea just spiralled from there! We made our table plan from a vintage map of Devon and more trusty luggage tags. We collected vintage postcards and rented a red post box, so people could write us messages and post them, instead of a traditional guest book. My mum made bunting out of vintage postcard fabric as I didn’t like the traditional triangle ones. We also had vintage postcards made for our table names with important places in Devon to us both. The rest was just vintage bottles hired from Devon Vintage China and lots of lovely flowers!

The wedding cake: traditional or quirky?

A bit of both. It was a 3 tier plain sponge with fresh strawberries and cream, but we found it difficult to find someone to make it for us as it was roughly iced with white chocolate clotted cream and they were worried about it collapsing in the heat. In the end Pink Elephant Cakes did a fab job. Even decorated with fresh strawberries too!

Entertainment:

The band we had booked since November the previous year cancelled with less than a month to go! Just proving you have to prepare for the unexpected. Luckily my brother is at Music College and put together one at the last minute – we called them ‘The Band with No Name’. They were absolutely brilliant in the end, played everything we wanted to hear so we could be on the dance floor all night.

On the day tips and advice:

Expect the unexpected. There will always be one major thing that goes wrong. But in the end you have to think to yourself – does it really matter how I got to the church? We paid £200 for a vintage morris minor that ended up not starting on the morning of the wedding! Luckily a cousin with a Range Rover rescued me, but by the time I got there no one was outside the church anyway, so it seemed like a big waste of money. Don’t sweat the small stuff. I know everyone says that but try to remember why you are getting married. It’s not for the pomp and circumstance, it’s because you want to spend your life with that 1 other person. No one else…just him. I spent the week before crying when I saw the weather forecast. So silly I know but it was the one thing I couldn’t control! In the end it was fine as everyone was together in the house and it made it more sociable and intimate. And lastly spend money on the important things like getting an amazing photographer to capture the day exactly how you want, because those will be with you for a lifetime. No one else will remember the favours or how the cake tasted, but you will show your grandchildren the pictures. Also rehearse your first dance – we didn’t and have regretted it ever since!

What’s the best thing about being married?

Getting to say ‘that’s why I married you’ after everything you agree on! For us, it hasn’t really changed anything on a day to day basis, but the feeling of security and knowing you have someone to share the rest of your life with is a bigger picture that you sometimes forget when you’re making tea or putting out the washing. So try to remember and tell each other every day that you love them and you’re so glad you married them.

Quick supplier list for other brides and grooms:

Devon wedding photographer Mark at Evolve Photography http://www.evolvephoto.co.uk/
Venue: http://shilstonedevon.co.uk/

Dress: http://www.elliesanderson.co.uk/branch/oxford-boutique/

Shoes: http://www.rachelsimpsonshoes.co.uk/

Suit designer: http://www.reiss.com/mens/suits-and-tailoring

Bridesmaid Dress: http://www.debenhams.com/debut

Stationery Designer: Lucy Says I Do through http://www.notonthehighstreet.com/

Cake: http://pinkelephantcake.co.uk/

Hair and Make-up: http://www.sarahcase.co.uk/

Photographer: http://www.evolvephoto.co.uk/

Flowers: http://www.carolinehodges.co.uk/

Tableware: http://www.devonvintagechina.co.uk/

Vintage furniture: https://www.veryvintagehire.co.uk/

Diamond earrings: http://www.watermansjewellers.co.uk/

Necklace: http://www.ivoryandcotiaras.co.uk/

Bride’s rings: http://www.tiffany.co.uk/

Groom’s ring: http://www.platinumringcompany.com/

Garter: http://www.laurageorge.co.uk/

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 www.byMoonandTide.com. Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in 2011 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.

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