I love this wedding – Emma and Sean share my taste in books so their table names are just fabulous! They’re a gorgeous couple too – and the details of their day are wonderful.
“I made all of our wedding stationery myself, but I bought everything from The Range and Hobbycraft – with the exception of a copy of ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’ (my favourite book) which I bought from a charity shop, and which featured on every invitation, the table plan, all the signs, the guestbook and the confetti on the tables!”
I totally fell in love with my wedding dress, which was by Charlotte Balbier from The Wedding Room, Chilwell. I tried it on once, thought it might be a bit OTT, so didn’t buy it, but then couldn’t stop thinking about it and so I went in the next day and bought it!
Our venue needed no extra decoration at all: it was really rustic, with plenty of decoration in the way of fairy lights, bunting and general farming stuff all over the walls! Only decorating we did was of the tables, where we had logs as centrepieces, each with a book on top (the tables were all named after mine and Sean’s favourite authors) and then butterfly shaped confetti I stamped out of ‘Captain Corelli’s Mandolin’!
Images are by lovely Northamptonshire wedding photographer Hannah Hall. Discover more from her here:
The English Wedding Blog interview: Emma and Sean
Wedding photographer’s website:
How did you choose your photographer?
Hannah was recommended to us via one of my bridesmaids, a very good friend of Hannah’s – she was just starting up her photography business at the time and we were very excited to be one of her first bookings!
Were you pleased with your wedding photographer? Do tell… we love a brilliant review!
Absolutely delighted – Hannah was a superstar. We had two photoshoots before the wedding (all included in the price) – an engagement shoot, which gave us the opportunity to get to know her a bit better, and vice versa; and she met us at our venue a year to the day before the wedding so she could get an idea of lighting, weather and the best spots for photographs, as it was a venue she had not photographed before. She was super-professional, but also incredibly cheerful and friendly on the day with all of our guests, and I really felt like she shared our excitement. So many of our guests commented on how lovely our photographer was and asked for her details! We had a few ideas of photographs we really wanted – for example we wanted to use sparklers instead of confetti (as it was a winter wedding and so got dark pretty early) and she was straight on board, checking out ideas on how to get the best shots. She also brought along some of her own ideas, like a smoke bomb – which turned into one of our favourite photos in the entire collection! We couldn’t have asked for more.
Tell us about the moment you saw your wedding photos for the first time?
Just thrilled. They are really beautiful and captured our day perfectly, from me and the bridesmaids eating breakfast and getting ready, to Sean and the groomsmen larking about at the venue waiting for the guests to arrive. There are some lovely artisitic shots of us and of the venue, but she also captured some of the more intimate and personal aspects of the day perfectly – it was wonderful to reflect on it and see the whole day from someone else’s perspective, and to see so many pictures of our guests smiling and enjoying themselves was really the icing on the cake.
Can you describe your wedding in fewer than 10 words?
Chilly, rustic, fabulous shoes, wellies, books, sparklers, Shakespeare, perfect.
Your wedding style or theme:
Rustic style, given farmhouse venue, with a literary theme.
Where did you find your suppliers? (Blogs, magazines, recommendations?)
Other than the dress and suits, we didn’t use any! Our wedding cake was made by Sean’s immensely talented cousin, Sharon, who runs her own cake making business – www.sadiemaycake.co.uk. Other than that, all the food came from the venue and I made everything else.
What’s your top tip for saving money?
DIY! I made all of the save the dates and invitations (with help from willing friends and bridesmaids!) as well as the seating plan, signs and all table settings, and also bought a cheap scrapbook and customised it for our guestbook – it saved a ton of money. And don’t feel like you need to have flowers if you don’t want them – they aren’t a necessity. We didn’t have any, and nobody missed them!
… and which elements of your wedding are you glad you spent more on?
My dress – it was perfect and I loved it. Although even that didn’t break the bank, as I bought it in a sample sale at nearly half price! Also, we spent a little more on hiring the suits, which looked great – especially with my dad and Sean’s dad kitted out the same.
Tell us about your accessories: jewellery, shoes and anything else!
I had a back necklace (as my dress was quite open at the back) which was a string of pearlsmade by Jewelia, and a hair vine to match by Nieve Couture. My shoes were irregular choice victorian-style boots, called Abigail’s Party – beatiful lace pattern with thick ribbon tied in bows on the front.
And what did the groom wear?
Slim Fit Grey suit by Slaters, with an orange rouche and pocket handkerchief. He also had a rather fabulous pair of shoes (though I don’t remember who designed them) from Next.
Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?
Plum coloured maxi dresses with beaded flower panels from Asos (another bargain!)
Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?
Crafts and makes – tell us about any homemade elements of your wedding… did you enjoy them?
As mentioned already, I made as much as I could. I enjoyed it, though it was time consuming, frustrating and rather hard work at times! Totally paid off in the end though, and I was really happy with how everything turned out.
The wedding cake: what kind of cake did you choose and why?
Our wedding cake was designed to look like a pile of old leather bound books, with our favourite titles on the spines. Sharon did an incredible job, and her attention to detail was amazing. We didn’t want a regular wedding cake with icing flowers that we liked the look of- we wanted one that fit with the rest of our day, and it certainly did!
Entertainment: any musical recommendations, surprises or treats?
Some very talented friends of mine – Josh Kemp (http://joshkempmusic.co.uk/) and Caroline Swaby – sang during the ceremony, which was really lovely and personal. They arranged some of our favourite songs into duets (despite only meeting once before the wedding!) and it was perfect.
Words of wisdom: share your best piece of advice for other couples:
The same piece of wisdom some friends shared with us: As soon as the evening food comes out, take some, wrap it, and stash it in your room for later – guaranteed you’ll be STARVING by the time you finally say goodbye to your guests! I barely ate anything all day, as I just wasn’t hungry amidst all the excitement, and so I was absolutely ravenous by 1am when we bid everyone goodnight – the venison and pork cob went down an absolute treat!
What’s the best thing about being married?
Looking back on the pictures from our amazing wedding day! (And knowing that I don’t have to plan another!!)
Favourite supplier web links for other brides and grooms:
Pinterest for ideas. Notonthehighstreet.com for other ideas.