There’s nothing better than waking up on a Monday morning… and going straight back to sleep, is there?! Happy Bank Holiday everyone! I hope you’re having a lovely day, whatever you’re up to! Who else forgot to turn their alarm off this morning?! Anyways… today we have the most glorious Cambridge wedding to share with you. I love it: for Jen and Alex’s head-over-heels-in-love vibe, and for the beautiful summer feels captured so brilliantly by our friend and Norwich wedding photographer Rob Dodsworth Photography.
Childerley Hall is an Elizabethan house set within the most stunning gardens! It is also home to one of the longest timber framed barn wedding venues in England – the Long Barn! Virtually any wedding will fit in this venue, which seats anything from 30 to 350 guests!
Jen & Alex went for a theme in keeping with the barn which was where the reception and evening reception were held. “We opted for pink/grey/white flowers and continued this theme with the bridesmaids dresses and groomsmen ties. As the barn was so beautiful we didn’t really need to decorate it. We tried to keep it as rustic as possible with crates covered in photos and handmade wooden table centre pieces for the flowers to sit on. We also both met on the punts in Cambridge so that was also a theme for our table names – the River Cam and the colleges.
Wedding photographer’s website:
We actually went to our friends’ wedding and Rob was photographing it – we loved his style of shot and how he blended into the wedding day. He was just so easy going and lovely to get on with that we just knew we wanted to ask him to capture our special day.
Rob was incredible, from the moment he turned up it was like he had known us for years. He instantly had my bridesmaids and I in fits of giggles and was snapping away without us knowing. This theme continued throughout the day with Rob capturing some hilarious and special moments. Our guests commented on how professional and friendly Rob was and we couldn’t agree more.
When we met Rob to discuss our wedding we said the only thing we wanted was for him to capture the priceless moments we, as a Bride and Groom, would miss and he didn’t disappoint. We love each and every single one of our photos, he captured our day perfectly and has completely surpassed all our expectations.
Discover more from Norfolk wedding photographer Rob Dodsworth here:
Where did you find your suppliers? (Blogs, magazines, recommendations?)
Local local local, anything Cambridge related Apart from the photographer ha-ha (Rob was Norfolk so still East Anglia!)
Cake – my Aunt is a wedding cake maker.
Flower – I shopped for a local wholesaler for the flowers (originally my parents who own a large allotment were due to supply the flowers, unfortunately a HOT summer meant they all came up too early).
Favours – Alex’s Gramma kindly made sloegin and his Nan made shortbread for everyone.
What’s your top tip for saving money?
Sales! I managed to get the bridesmaids dresses in the sales and shopped around for the decoration during the sales.
Also, don’t be afraid to make things yourself. We did the flowers and it was so much fun, they looked great! Handmade makes it really personal.
… and which elements of your wedding are you glad you spent more on?
Photographer, Band and Catering!
Where did you buy or source your wedding stationery – or was making it a labour of love?
I designed the invites, order of service, etc myself and then used a local printer who I knew through my job. We were very lucky in that my friend is extremely talented with a pen and paper, she kindly drew all our table names, signs and large orders of the day.
Did you fall in love with your wedding dress?
Interesting I didn’t pick it myself – my bridesmaids choose it. I guess they really do know me best. When I put it on I knew it was the one and we went for it then and there!
Wedding dress designer and bridal boutique:
Dress – Studio St Patrick by Pronovias.
Bridal Boutique – Burr Bridal Cambridge.
I was dreading dress shopping as I was only 3 months postpartum but Kim and the team at Burr Bridal where amazing and made me feel amazing when I tired them all on.
Tell us about your accessories: jewellery, shoes and anything else!
I wore my favorite court point shoes (I didn’t want new ones as I knew no one would see them, plus they are SO comfy for high heels).
I also had some hair jewellery
Something new – dress
Something blue – Mum’s blue earrings
Something borrowed- Mum’s bracelet
And what did the groom wear?
Alex wanted to be in something light, given it was Bank Holiday in August. He looked everywhere and couldn’t find anything he liked. One of his groomsmen found the suits in M&S and they went for a fitting and loved them. They weere a light blue and really light fitting, great for a summer day. They also went nicely with the bridesmaids dresses which was always a bonus.
Beautiful bridesmaids: what did your best girls wear?
My wonderful bridesmaids wore dusty pink multi-way dresses, which they all styled differently. These are great for all body shapes and I knew I wanted these from the start.
Hair and make-up – did you DIY or hire a professional?
I hired in a professional and I am so pleased I did. We started at 7am(!) to get myself, 4 bridesmaids and my mum done in time. We honestly all felt like celebrities getting pampered, it was so special!
Describe your wedding flowers. Who arranged them for you? (florist details would be lovely please)
I shopped for a local wholesaler for the flowers (originally my parents who own a large allotment weere due to supply the flowers, unfortunately a HOT summer meant they all came up too early). Myself and one of my bridesmaids then arranged all the centre pieces, top table, aisle flowers and flowers for podiums. We also went a little creative with flowers around hula hoops wrapped in hessian – very in keeping with the barn!
I decided against making my bouquets and button holes last minute so chose a local florist – Kat at Passionate Flowers, she was great and brought my vision to life. I loved my flowers so much!
General styling – did your venue need much decoration?
Not at all, the barn was spectacular and already came with hanging globe lights all over. The grounds and garden didn’t need anything as they were perfect, we even had some life size wicker elephants from a previous charity event which the guests LOVED.
Crafts and makes – tell us about any homemade elements of your wedding… did you enjoy them?
We had 8 babies/toddlers at the wedding so I made them each a goodie bag of treats and toys.
Alex’s dad created all our wedding centre pieces out of an old tree trunk. He carved the date and our initials into them.
My Aunt made our amazing 4 tiered cake – it ALL went (when does that ever happen!)
Nan and Gramma made our favors which they loved doing
We made our own sweet shop with rustic buckets of sweets on wooden ladders.
In the end yes, at the time not so much ha-ha. I’m glad we did as it was such a personal touch.
The wedding cake: what kind of cake did you choose and why?
We had a 4 tiered cake made by my Aunt (Fruit, lemon and elderflower, Victoria sponge and carrot). We wanted it to be very simple yet elegant so it was covered in white icing with sugar flowers cascading up. Everyone thought the flowers where real!
Entertainment: any musical recommendations, surprises or treats?
We surprised the guests with a Steel Band during the garden reception! One of my friends from baby group mentioned she played in a Steel band and I just knew it would work perfectly!
We then had a band in the evening who played until the end – they even took a survivors photo for us (a tradition at Cambridge May Balls for all those who last until the end).
Words of wisdom: share your best piece of advice for other couples:
Remember to eat and take a moment with your partner, alone, to take the day in – it can be very overwhelming.
What’s the best thing about being married?
For me it’s being a family (we now all have the same surname) with my husband and son.
Favourite suppliers for other brides and grooms:
Wedding photographer – https://www.robdodsworth.co.uk
Suits – M&S Cambridge
Bridemaids dresses – ASOS
Catering – Provenance Kitchen, Cambridge
Ice-cream – Toni’s ices, Cambridge
Band – Swagger, Cambridge
Photobooth – Cambridge Photobooth
Bar – La Raza, Cambridge
Hair – Letty, Salon 262
Make up – make up by Val
Steel band – Panik Steel band