Happy Valentine’s Day everyone! I hope you have something lovely planned for this evening… and to keep your hearts full of love and happiness I have a wonderfully romantic and beautiful day to share with you this afternoon. I LOVE this wedding – gorgeous couple Louise and Tom are absolutely perfect for the English Wedding Blog with all their fabulous flowers and such stunning portraits by Kathryn Edwards.
“I bought most of the stuff myself… mainly from Hobbycraft, Etsy or Not on the High Street. I was introduced to Elinor Softley who has her own business in decorating weddings and she was an absolute life saver! She completely understood the theme and ideas I had for the day and couldn’t do enough for us. I don’t know what we would have done without her as she dressed the venue by herself on the Friday and helped to take it down on the Sunday! She is amazing. Her company is fairly new, but she is so talented! It’s called Soft Touch Events and you can hire lots of cool things from Elinor…I think I hired pretty much her whole warehouse!
My parents found a company called Sitting Pretty and the lady who runs it was brilliant. She created our seating plan and also dressed the tables and chairs and would email me with updates to see if I liked what she had created. I felt very much appreciated and listened to and couldn’t recommend Sitting Pretty enough.
Images are by Nottingham wedding photographer Kathryn Edwards, who you can discover more from here:
Second Shooter: Carolyn Brown
“The best thing about the day was Louise and Tom – they were amazing, so funny and sweet together. One of my favourite parts of the wedding was Tom singing “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys at the end of his speech along with several of his musician friends, who joined in as the song started up. It was a surprise for Lou (her favourite song) It was such a touching and special moment. I felt like I was in Love Actually!” ~ Kathryn Edwards Photography
Wedding photographer’s website:
How did you choose your photographer?
We really wanted someone who would reflect the relaxed but fun atmosphere of our wedding in their pictures, especially the candid and informal shots as we feel these are the most personal. With this is mind, I went to lots of wedding fayres, but couldn’t really find anyone who would truly capture what we wanted. So, I resorted to googling photographers near us and luckily, I found Kathryn. I looked through pretty much all of wedding photography blogs she has on her website (we’re on there now! #goalachieved) and fell in love with her style. We went round to her house to talk through what we wanted and as soon as we met her, we knew she was ‘The One’!
Were you pleased with your wedding photographer? Do tell… we love a brilliant review!
We absolutely love Kathryn! She was incredible. Kathryn knew what we wanted and took the time to check through all the details with us. The engagement shoot we did with Kathryn really helped us to get to know each other and we felt so comfortable with Kathryn – it felt like we had known her forever! She is really lovely and funny and fitted right in with the wedding party! Kathryn is not intrusive in any way and, at times, we forgot she was there…in a good way! Her style was exactly what we wanted: relaxed, candid and informal and it completely reflected the feel of our day. Kathryn is brilliant and I genuinely cannot recommend her enough. Seriously, she’s amazing and we feel very, very lucky to have found her.
Tell us about the moment you saw your wedding photos for the first time?
Kathryn emailed us and told us get ready with a glass of wine (which we did!) and sent us the link to our photos. It was about a month or so later and we were incredibly excited to see them as we had already seen some sneak previews on Facebook! There were so many photos, but each and every one of them captured the day down to tee. We both cried as we scrolled through – it genuinely felt like we were reliving our wedding day all over again! We have looked at all 650 of them at least ten more times since..!
The wedding venue was Park Farmhouse in Castle Donington and as soon as we went to visit it, we knew it was the perfect placed for us! The wedding all took place at the venue and we hired out all 19 rooms for our immediate friends and family so it really was just for us. We got married in the converted barn which had exposed beams and high ceilings – it was magical. For the wedding breakfast, we ate in a room that used to be pig sties, which was really cool! We had the whole site to ourselves and even put outdoor games in the courtyard which kept guests busy – old and young!
Can you describe your wedding in fewer than 10 words?
Magical, informal, relaxed, fun, rustic, funny, lots of dancing!
Your wedding style or theme:
Colour theme: mint, light pink and gold.
What’s your top tip for saving money?
Don’t get carried away! I allowed myself to get swept up in so many wedding Pinterest boards and it began to take over everything! I would recommend sitting down together and writing down all the key, important things you guys want and stick to it. Be clear and stay true to who you guys are.
… and which elements of your wedding are you glad you spent more on?
The flowers as they were absolutely beautiful, Kathryn Edward’s wedding video (it wasn’t really expensive, but it is our favourite thing to look back on – my bridesmaid, Lauren, still texts me to let me know she’s watching it!), the ceilidh band because they got everyone up dancing all night!
Where did you buy or source your wedding stationery – or was making it a labour of love?
Etsy was the main place I went to for this i.e. Our save the dates & wedding invites. Sitting Pretty created the place and table names.
Rachael (one of my bridesmaids) is amazing at making her writing look cool so we were very grateful that she hand wrote all the signs on the chalkboards. Her wedding gift to us was a painting she did of our beloved miniature schnauzer, Kevin, tied to some string on some white canvas. The guests then had to put their thumb in pink ink to make it seem like Kevin was being lifted by balloons! We have it up in our living room and we love it so much!
Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?
Yes! I went with my mum to the bridal shop and the dress I ended up with was the one I eventually bought for my wedding! I tried on about 8 in total, but we found ourselves comparing every dress to the first one I had tried on. I cried when I put it on for the second time and knew it was for me!
I fell in love with it even more after losing nearly 3 stone and hitting my goal weight!
Wedding dress designer and bridal boutique:
The bridal boutique is literally a 10 minute walk from my house! They are so friendly in there and couldn’t do enough for me. It’s called Beau Belles and is in Borrowash, Derby. I genuinely enjoyed going in there as I felt so relaxed and appreciated. But I think the seamstress may have gotten a teensy bit stressed at my indecisiveness!
Tell us about your accessories: jewellery, shoes and anything else!
My dress was lacy on the neck and so I didn’t feel like I needed to wear a necklace. I bought some pretty diamond studs from Accessorize and that was the only piece of jewellery I wore. As I’m the same height as Tom, I decided to wear some flat shoes which I got from Beau Belles. They were ivory and lacy to match the dress. I also got a headband from Beau Belles which had a beautiful design to match my dress and veil.
And what did the groom wear?
Tom wore a tweed suit to match the informal and rustic feel of the day. It was a beautifully made suit, tailored to fit Tom and he looked incredibly handsome in it! We wanted something different from the usual groom suits you can hire from shops as we wanted it to reflect our unique day. We bought the suit, so Tom can wear it again.
Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?
My bridesmaids and bridesman were amazing – they helped calm my nerves on the morning of the wedding! The bridesmaids all bought their own dresses and the only thing I asked them was to ensure their dresses were pink. My sister, Nikki, was my maid of honour and she got her amazing outfit from Coast. The rest of the bridesmaids were my friends I met at uni. Lauren ordered her Grecian style dress from ASOS and she looked stunning! I was with Hannah when she got her bridesmaids dress from Monsoon and I think it suited her perfectly! And Rachael got her a-line dress from Coast also which was beautiful! I was incredibly grateful that they were willing to buy their own dresses and when I saw them all together on the day in their outfits, I cried! It all went together so well and the dresses and different shades of pink complemented each other wonderfully. I also loved that they were each able to buy something of their own ‘style’, that they felt comfortable in. Dan,my bridesman, wore the same suit as the groomsmen but with a pink tie to ensure he fitted in with the bridesmaids! These are some of the most important people in my life and I am eternally thankful that they were with me on my wedding day.
Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?
Rachael (one of my bridesmaids) did my make up for me because she’s amazing at it and used to do it all the time for me when we were living together at university in Manchester! I trusted her as she knows me so well and I think the make up turned out beautifully – it was subtle, but elegant. Thanks, Rach!
Helen Sutcliffe did my hair and my bridesmaids’ hair and I absolutely loved it! She is such a lovely person and I had 2 trials as she wanted to ensure I felt comfortable with the style. I found her after googling wedding hairdressers in Nottingham and was so happy she was free on my wedding day! Helen completely understood the kind of style I wanted and didn’t try to push me to do something I didn’t want to.
Describe your wedding flowers. Who arranged them for you? (florist details would be lovely please)
Twisted Willow Florist was the company I went with land Rebecca is an absolute genius! I found her at Osmaston Wedding Fayre and fell in love with all her designs…I booked her almost 2 years before our actual wedding! I know nothing about flowers so looked on Pinterest for inspiration – all I knew was that I wanted pinks and green and I wanted my bouquet to look natural, like it had been scooped up! I had no idea what my bouquet would look like until the day, but when I saw it, I cried…out of sheer happiness! It was magnificent. Everything I wanted and more. They matched the colour scheme amazingly well and were just perfect. My bridesmaids had gypsophila with pale pink roses in the middle, which matched the style of the wedding and their dresses so well! Gyspophila was the main flower of the wedding because it was cost effective, but also because it gave that rustic feel that we wanted. Rebecca did an amazing job with the corsages worn by my mum, mother-in-law and grandma and the buttonholes worn by Tom and the groomsmen. She also made gypsolphila flower crowns for our flower girls. She was so easy to talk to and truly did put my mind at ease! I felt like I could text her at any time…and I did! I could not recommend Twisted Willow Florists more.
General styling – did your venue need much decoration?
The venue was pretty big and so I wanted lots of bunting and other decorations to ensure every nook and cranny matched the theme of the wedding! I bought reams of bunting and pom poms and jam jars and balloons and pictures frames…too many things, really! I hired a lot of really cool items from Soft Touch Events such as a light box, a suitcase, a sweet trolley, rustic ladders and much more. Elinor really made the venue look breath taking!
Crafts and makes – tell us about any homemade elements of your wedding… did you enjoy them?
Tom and I made the favours. We bought a variety of flower seeds and put them in Kraft envelopes which we stamped with a personalised stamp I ordered from Etsy. The flower seeds were some of the flowers I had in my bouquet – we thought it was a nice personal touch for the guests to take away with them.
Tom, my dad, Tom’s friend Dave and my father-in-law all sat round our dining table and made the centre pieces for the table. They used glue guns to stick hessian and paper roses to jam jars and I think they turned out really well!
The wedding cake: what kind of cake did you choose and why?
Tom’s mum, Pat, is an amazing cook so we wanted her to make our wedding cake for us. She looked visibly scared when we asked her as she realised it was quite a big task, but she accepted! Pat was amazing and we were so happy she agreed as the cake was a big hit at the wedding! It was a naked cake and each tier was a different flavour: chocolate, lemon drizzle, coconut and red velvet. It really was so tasty!
Entertainment: any musical recommendations, surprises or treats?
Tom’s friend is in a ceilidh band called Ceilidhography who we hired to play at our evening reception. They were amazing and got all the guests up and dancing for hours! Kathryn Edwards managed to get some pretty funny pictures of the guests!
Unbeknownst to me, Tom had arranged for his musician friends to help him sing one of our favourite songs, ‘God Only Knows’ by the Beach Boys after Tom’s speech! It blew me away and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house! I had no idea that Tom was planning it and it still gives me goosebumps thinking about it!
Words of wisdom: share your best piece of advice for other couples:
Take time out from the serious things in life to spend quality time together and have fun!
What’s the best thing about being married?
Everything is the same, but we feel more like a unit. I’m still getting used to ticking the ‘Mrs’ box! I just feel happier knowing that I’m married to my best friend.
Favourite supplier web links for other brides and grooms:
Kathryn Edwards photography – kathrynedwardsphotography.com
Helen Sutcliffe hair stylist – http://www.helensutcliffehair.co.uk/
Soft Touch Events – https://facebook.com/softtouchevents/#!/softtouchevents/
Twisted Willow Florist – https://twistedwillowflorists.co.uk/