Happy Friday lovelies! It’s been a fabulous week here at English Wedding HQ and we’ve plenty of loveliness in store for the rest of the summer too. Have you signed up for our mailing list yet? You’ll be the first to read our new digital magazine if you do – it comes out in September and we’re so excited to share it with you.
Today’s real wedding is a beautiful combo of contemporary chic styling and traditional touches. Beautiful bride Lilyanna and gorgeous groom Chris were married in April at The Reid Rooms in Margaret Roding, Essex. Originally built nearly 200 years ago as stables for the working horses on Marks Hall Farm, the Reid Rooms is in such a lovely rural setting and has real charm about it – there’s even a moat, open fields and a pretty courtyard full of colourful flowers.
“We didn’t really have a theme, I wanted to keep it quite traditional with a spring feeling. We had a lot of lilac and lace. I wanted it to look pretty but not too much, I definitely feel like we achieved this as I would not change anything if I had the chance.
Images are all by Rebecca Louise Photography
Rebecca Louise’s second shooter was Lily Lane Photography/
Wedding photographer’s website:
How did you choose your photographer?
Choosing my photographer was one of the things that I really wanted to get right as the photos are what we will look back at over the years to remember our special day, so I wanted them to be perfect.
I came across Rebecca on Facebook, I loved her photo’s because they don’t look edited at all and looked as though they’d all been taken in amazing lighting. I’m emailed her and she came back to me straight away, which is something I started to realise not all suppliers do!
Were you pleased with your wedding photographer? Do tell… we love a brilliant review!
I genuinely could not recommend Rebecca Louise Photography enough. Rebecca and Lily were brilliant from the beginning, including our engagement shoot, helping us feel at east for the real day. Every moment was captured and we got the link to all of our photos so quickly. The photos were more than we could have hoped for, they all look as though they’ve been taken in such beautiful lighting and we can’t stop looking at them.
Tell us about the moment you saw your wedding photos for the first time?
Rebecca gave us a little sneak peak with around 5 photos the day after our wedding. I was so excited when I’d seen she posted them on Facebook, I called my mum straight away so the whole family could have a look. They actually made me well up a bit because they captured what was such an amazing day and we were so sad that it was all over.
Can you describe your wedding in fewer than 10 words?
A sunny, smile filled day shared with everyone we love.
Where did you find your suppliers? (Blogs, magazines, recommendations?)
All of my suppliers were local companies that I had found through endless amounts of scrolling through Google and reading reviews. I’m a little younger than most people when they get married, so I didn’t really have any friend to give me any recommendations. I was genuinely happy with everyone that we used.
What’s your top tip for saving money?
I would say do you research. Whenever I found something I liked online, I would always search to see if anywhere did it cheaper because I found there was such a huge variation in price for an identical product! Particularly the kimono’s that I ought for my bridesmaids to get ready in.
… and which elements of your wedding are you glad you spent more on?
We are glad we spent the extra money on having a Toastmaster. I would recommend having one to anyone, he really helped the day run smoothly and guided our guests throughout the day. He made us feel extra special by announcing us into the wedding breakfast along with both our parents and helped us organise a receiving line to introduce all of our guests. It took a lot of stress away from us and the wedding party.
Where did you buy or source your wedding stationery – or was making it a labour of love?
I used an online company called Pure Invitation for my day and evening invites. They’re brilliant because you have the option to put the invites together yourself for cheaper or pay for them to put them all together for you. To save a little money, I decided to put them together myself, all you needed was some double sided sticky tape. I made a night of it, invited all my bridesmaids over and a had a few glasses of wine in the process.
For my order of service and thank you cards, I used optimal print. Its so reasonably priced and there’s so much choice on there, no matter what you theme is.
Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?
I had planned to visit a few wedding dress shops and try on loads before making my mind up, however it didn’t really work out like that.
I found my dress in the first shop I visited and paid for it then and there, I didn’t need time to think about it because I felt so comfortable in it & I knew it was the one.
Wedding dress designer and bridal boutique:
Enchanted Bridal Boutique in Old Harlow & my dress was by Danielle Couture.
Its a small, friendly boutique and Mel the owner really made me feel comfortable.
Tell us about your accessories: jewellery, shoes and anything else!
I wanted to wear a head band that went across my forehead, but I didn’t want anything too large that would take any attention away from my dress. I wanted it to be dainty but I knew that it was going to be a tricky task so I waited until I had my dress to make sure the beading and crystals matched. I found the perfect one at a bridal shop in Ware, Herts called Clifford Burr. I bought some simple tear drop silver earrings that matched as I didn’t want it to look too much with the headband.
Chris had bought me a bracelet to wear on our wedding day as a gift, I absolutely loved it. It was a 2 small rings engraved with “together forever” on a thin chain from Thomas Sabo and I haven’t taken it off since.
And what did the groom wear?
Chris looked so lovely in his suit. It was a lightish navy suite with a matching waistcoat and dickie bow. His shoes were amazing, they were brown with navy panels on the sides, only him and the best man wore these and the other groomsmen just had brown ones. As a gift I bought him personalised rose gold cufflinks and a rose gold pocket watch that looked great against the navy.
Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?
I had 7 bridesmaids, so obviously it was going to be hard to find a dress to fit everyone perfectly. I spent hours upon hours searching through the internet to find something I liked & that my bridesmaids would be happy with. I kept coming across a multiway maxi dress but I wasn’t sure if they were a little basic, so I ordered one to get everyone’s opinions and to get them to try it on. All the bridesmaids loved them as they were really comfortable and flattered in all the right places. I decided to go ahead and buy all 7, they’re one size fits all which was so easy when it came to ordering.
They all looked so beautifully classic on the day.
Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?
I had my hair and Make-up done professionally by Light Box, a company in Dunmow High street. They were amazing and I couldn’t recommend them enough.
For me, my makeup was one of the things that I was most concerned about because I wanted enough to make me feel amazing but still looking natural and bridal. I went for a shimmery, light smokey eyes and a nude lip. My hair was up in a loose, curly bun with a few curls down at the front.
Describe your wedding flowers. Who arranged them for you? (florist details would be lovely please)
Sue’s Flowers in Jacks Hatch, Harlow. Sue was brilliant, I was probably such a nightmare for her as I was constantly adding on more things and changing my mind all the time but it never felt like she minded. Sue called me the day before the wedding, to go through everything like timing etc so I felt so at ease to just leave her to it.
The flowers were beautiful and just what I asked for. So many people commented on out centrepieces. They were tall martini glasses filled with lilac, cream & green flowers with ivy twisted down the stem. I loved them.
General styling – did your venue need much decoration?
The venue didn’t need much at all. Its such a stunning venue on its own with its large beams and high ceilings. We just added a few small touches, like fairy lights and bunting.
Crafts and makes – tell us about any homemade elements of your wedding… did you enjoy them?
I made the hangers for my Bridesmaids as a gift to hang their dresses on. I bought 7 plain white, wooden hangers from Ebay. I wrote their name, the date & ‘bridesmaid’ along each side in a silver pen and tied and lilac ribbon into a bow around the hook of the hanger.
I was really pleased with the outcome, especially as they were around £15 each to buy and its something special for them to keep.
The wedding cake: what kind of cake did you choose and why?
Angela from Sweet Boutique Bakes in Bishops Stortford made our cake for us and she did an amazing job creating exactly what we wanted.
It was quite a large, three tiered cake with half lemon sponge and the other vanilla. It was decorated beautifully with lace icing and green and lilac flowers bundled perfectly on the top, I didn’t want to cut into it, it looked so perfect!
Entertainment: any musical recommendations, surprises or treats?
We used Aurora pearl for our DJ, dance floor Mr & Mrs lights and photo booth. I would definitely recommended getting a photo booth as its a bit of fun for all ages and you get to keep all the photos that you can look back on and laugh.
We were so lucky with the weather on our day so we had our pianist play outside in the courtyard during our drinks reception. We used a company called piano DJ for this and the pianist was absolutely brilliant, it helped create such a happy, relaxed background for the drinks reception.
Words of wisdom: share your best piece of advice for other couples:
The week in the run up before the wedding I was so stressed I thought my head was going to blow up, worry about things that seem so silly now.
I would say try to enjoy the preparations as much as you can and try not to stress out too much because I guarantee you that whatever happens it will be the most amazing day for you and your groom.
What’s the best thing about being married?
It sounds a bit cringey, but we now feel like a proper team. Its a lifelong commitment with someone you love who will stand by your side through the good times and the bad. Its someone for support for everything, anytime and the best part is your best friend is right there in your own home to enjoy everything with.
Favourite supplier web links for other brides and grooms:
I bought sooooo much for our wedding from Etsy. They have the loveliest little touches to make your day special.