Sarah and Nick were married at Haworth Art Gallery – a fabulous location with a romantic atmosphere which needed little extra styling. Their creative talents came out to play with their marquee reception, where they enlisted friends and family to help make everything from bunting to stationery.
Today’s gorgeous bride made her own cake and many of the decorations, and everything looks amazing! Their guests commented on how personal this DIY wedding was because of all the things they thought of and made.
I particularly love the French influence in elements of the wedding design: the typefaces used on the Order of the Day; the cork decorations and the cheese wedding cake. It’s a wonderfully romantic and creative day from beginning to end, and the photographs from Pixies in the Cellar capture every detail – it’s a treat to be able to share them with you today!
Do get in touch if you’re looking for a wedding photographer:
- Pixies in the Cellar
- Pixies on Pinterest
- Sara and Peter’s Facebook page
Sarah and Nick’s wedding report is just brilliant – please take your time reading through all of their experiences and tips as there are some great ideas for saving money, styling your day and finding suppliers too! You’ll find it at the end of today’s feature.
Our wedding report: Sarah and Nick
Wedding photographer’s website:
Were you pleased with your wedding photographer?
Absolutely delighted – Peter and Sara were totally professional, very friendly and produced breathtaking photos of our wedding.
The ceremony, followed by champagne and canapés, took place at the Haworth Art Gallery in Accrington, Lancs and the reception was held in a marquee at Nick’s parents’ smallholding (Smallshaw Hey Farm) in Great Harwood, Lancs.
Can you describe your wedding in a single sentence?
Our wedding was relaxed, informal and fun, focusing on celebrating and enjoying ourselves with our friends and families in a very personalised way.
What was your reaction to seeing your wedding photos for the first time?
We were completely blown away at the style, quality and thought that had gone in to each captured moment. It is impossible to tell from the photos that we are both incredibly camera shy! We are going to treasure these beautiful shots forever.
Your wedding style and theme:
A marquee wedding with rustic and vintage elements, lots of French influence (as I was a student in France) and full of homemade details.
Any happy tears on the day?
No happy tears but there was definitely emotion felt during the ceremony!
How did the two of you meet?
We met whilst studying for our PhDs at the University of Salford
How long did you spend planning your wedding?
Just over a year (about 13 months)
Best bit of budget advice?
Research everything as carefully as possible – don’t just accept the first quote – and make/do as much as you can yourselves, getting family and friends to help (we had lots of crafty decor to make to dress the marquee, including 100m of bunting that I sewed). Our guests commented on how personal the wedding was because of all the things we thought of and made. We made a considerable saving on marquee and floral decorations that way.
Wedding invitations and on the day stationery:
To save money and have exactly what we wanted, I (Sarah) designed the invitations and on the day stationery myself and they were printed by a local eco-friendly printer.
Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?
Yes! Beforehand, I wasn’t sure that I would feel any kind of emotional connection with the dress or know with absolute certainty that it was “the one” – but as soon as I tried it on I knew. I found it in the first (and only) bridal boutique I visited and couldn’t wait to wear it on the big day!
Wedding dress designer and bridal boutique:
Mori Lee (style 1903 in light gold) from The Organza Room in Amesbury, Wilts
Glitz and sparkle: the bride’s accessories:
I wore the “Heirloom of Pearl” side tiara and “Charming Pearls” bracelet, both from Glitzy Secrets. I also wore a pearl and diamond necklace – my “something borrowed” off one of my bridesmaids. The pearls and sparkle matched well with the embellishment on my dress. My shoes were rose coloured satin T-bar peep toe sandals (from Faith) that were also embellished with pearls and diamantes – they set my dress off perfectly.
The groom wore:
The groom, best man and ushers all wore a blue slim fit suit, coffee coloured tie and hankie (hired from Debenhams), with a white shirt, and tan brogues (from Next).
Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?
The two adult bridesmaids wore lace prom dresses in rosewater by Kaliko and shoes from Next. The young bridesmaid wore the Lydia bridesmaid dress in champagne from BHS.
Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?
Professional. Claire Clarkson did hair and make-up of bride and adult bridesmaids, hair of young bridesmaid and make-up of groom’s mother. Claire is a friend of one of the bridesmaids.
Mixture of DIY and professional. The Flower Shop in Clitheroe provided three arrangements for the Haworth Art Gallery, the bouquets and buttonholes: I did the birdcage table centrepieces and flowers in jam jars for the bistro tables – with help from my chief bridesmaid.
What do you remember most about the wedding ceremony?
Nick – waiting for Sarah and being amazed as she walked down the aisle, turning to the front and taking a deep breath and then smiling and enjoying the whole service, which was made even better by the readings we’d chosen and the people we’d asked to read them. The half hour after the ceremony was a blur!
Sarah – I remember most being incredibly nervous all the way to the Gallery! As soon as the ceremony started, I couldn’t stop smiling as I felt overwhelmingly happy and nerves faded away.
We had three readings, which took us ages to select as we didn’t want something cheesy or cringey about love (it’s not our style) nor did we want one of the readings you regularly hear at weddings. In the end, we selected: I’ll be there for you by Louise Cuddon, How falling in love is like owning a dog by Taylor Mali and The owl and the pussycat by Edward Lear. They were read by the bride’s brother, the groom’s cousin’s wife and the groom’s father respectively. They were fun readings and they got a lot of laughs – even the registrars had said beforehand they were looking forward to hearing them!
General styling – did your venue need much decoration?
We did very little at the Art Gallery – we let the beautiful building speak for itself. We had two flower arrangements for the front of the ceremony room and a small arrangement on the table where we signed the register. Conversely, the marquee and its surroundings needed a lot of decoration. We hired two artificial bay trees from the florist to frame the entrance to the marquee, we put up lots of fairy lights and bunting outside and had lots of lanterns sitting atop sections of tree trunks. In the entrance to the marquee, we had vintage floral paper chains, pompoms and hearts made from champagne corks. Inside the marquee, we put up bunting in pastel shades, wicker hearts with pastel tulle, cork garlands around the bar and birdcages, as table centrepieces, filled with flowers each sitting on a wide slice of tree trunk.
The wedding cake: traditional or quirky?
A bit of both! I made the wedding cake – a three tiered affair consisting of chocolate sponge, lemon drizzle and light fruit cake. We also had a cheese wedding cake – as I love cheese, and it was more French influence – and it formed part of our evening buffet. Both cakes sat on slices of tree trunk for a rustic look.
We were fortunate that there was a grand piano in the ceremony room at the Haworth and we got a pianist (Damian Oxborough) to play whilst the guests were seated, then again for the procession of the bridal party, signing of the register and recession of the bride and groom.
Our first band had to cancel due to unforeseen circumstances and we had to find a replacement quite late in the planning process. We booked Agent Smith and they were absolutely amazing. We asked them to play 3 sets and everyone loved them – lots of guests commented on them. They learned our first dance song specially, as we had choreographed a quickstep routine to it.
On the day tips and advice:
Nick – Relax! Don’t worry about getting the words right during the ceremony or during the speeches. I altered my speech comprehensively the morning of the wedding to include silly things that had happened while we were setting up for the wedding day. You’re talking to people you know so make it relaxed and conversational but outline your speech weeks in advance to make sure you include all the traditional elements of a Groom’s speech. Give a big smile to your Bride as she walks down the aisle, let your best man and ushers do their work and don’t worry.
Sarah – Get all the prep finished the night before so you can really relax and enjoy the morning before the ceremony. Make sure you have a list of tasks you need ushers/bridesmaids to do on the day of the wedding – that way they know what to do and you can relax in the knowledge everything will run smoothly.
What’s the best thing about being married?
Nick – we’d been together for a few years before getting married so we were used to living together and doing everything together but getting married gave me an unexpected sense of connection and personal comfort. I’m really looking forward to every year to come.
Sarah – it totally feels like the start of the next exciting chapter in our lives.
Quick supplier list for other brides and grooms:
Ceremony venue: http://www.hyndburnbc.gov.uk/hag
Marquee hire: http://www.firstchoicemarqueehire.co.uk
Wedding car: http://www.memorableweddingcars.co.uk
Wedding band: http://www.functioncentral.co.uk/acts/agent_smith/
Hair and make-up: http://www.claireclarkson.co.uk
Bridal boutique: http://www.organzaroom.co.uk