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Laura & Alex’s elegant rustic Shustoke Barn wedding, with Dean Jones & TDR Bridal

A wonderfully elegant Shustoke Barn wedding from back in 2019. Bride Laura is stunning in a dress from our faves and English Wedding members TDR Bridal – Alex her perfect match in a unique and super stylish Lambretta suit. The barn is beautifully styled with floral chandeliers by Penny Johnson Flowers, who also comes highly recommended by our gorgeous bride and groom. This is everything a barn wedding should be and more! I hope you love it. Have a wonderful Monday! “english

Wedding photographer’s website

https://deanjonesphotography.co.uk/

Did you love wearing your outfits? How was the dress / suit shopping experience?

I (Laura) adored my dress shopping experience…eventually! After initially trying on my first dress at The National Wedding Show and it feeling quite hectic, I was keen to go to some dress shops to experience the true wedding dress experience. I struggled picturing myself in “the dress” and after visiting 2 dress shops was starting to despair. A colleague recommended trying The Dressing Rooms in Halesowen (TDR) and I knew I’d found the shop for me. Every member of staff was so welcoming and helpful and they even chose my dress for me as I was dress blind by this point. As a naturally indecisive bride I panicked I’d made the wrong choice of dress but that was no trouble I was always welcomed back to try the sample on again and my nerves were instantly calmed. Becoming a TDR bride, meant I was added to their private Facebook group which provided me with a wealth of wedding tips and ideas from brides to be and support from their amazing staff. It brought me to tears when I went and collected my dress from being cleaned and boxed up earlier this year as my dress journey was finally over and I’d love to do it all over again!

Alex (the groom) found it much harder. He wore a purple Lambretta suit, with a double breasted waist coat. This was bought online, as finding a purple suit in a shop was impossible! We found when looking for his suit, finding something that a friend or relative hadn’t worn to their own wedding was quite hard and that there wasn’t a wealth of shops to go and try suits on in either. Finding the suit was actually more challenging than the dress!

How did you choose your photographer?

After searching for a while for the correct photographer we met Dean Jones Photography at a wedding fayre. We were so impressed with how relaxed he was, we knew he’d be the right fit for the feel of the day we were looking for. We loved looking at his albums which told the story of each couples day so we knew he would be right for us.

Were you pleased with your wedding photographer? Do tell… we love a brilliant review!

Dean was amazing. Right from our initial appointment with him we knew he was a true professional. As this was the first wedding Dean had shot at Shustoke, he came and met us at the venue prior to our wedding so we could discuss the types of shots we wanted on the day. On the day itself he was fantastic. Really made sure we enjoyed every moment but captured all those little details that we didn’t necessarily see or remember!!

Videographer details if applicable – and any thoughts for other couples about having a wedding video?

We couldn’t recommend a wedding videographer more! We used Marvin Marius from Through the Lens. Marvin fit into our wedding beautifully and almost felt like an additional guest. We deliberated for a while about whether to book a videographer and are so glad we did as the footage Marvin took has been combined into beautiful videos that we can treasure forever.

Tell us about your venue – what made this place special for you?

We knew we wanted a barn venue for our wedding reception as soon as we got engaged. Having seen Shustoke Barn on Instagram we felt fairly confident we knew what to expect when we visited. How wrong we were. Nothing could’ve prepared us for the beauty of this traditional brick barn with stunning high ceilings and a glorious courtyard. We visited during one of their open days and were so excited we booked it there and then by sending our booking email from the car in the car park. We returned that evening to see the barn lit up at night, full of candles and knew this was the venue for us. We loved that because it had an enclosed courtyard space and a large main room it would mean that our guests couldn’t sprawl too far and would all enjoy the party as much as we did!

Did you hire a florist? Tell us about any floral amazingness

We used the wonderful Penny Johnson Flowers. We initially saw Penny’s work at our venue’s open day and then when we started to follow her on Pinterest knew she’d be perfect for our day. We met with Penny who not only did our floral arrangements, she dressed the tables in the entrance with a vintage postbox and incorporated the photographs of our grandparents and parents we wanted displayed from their own wedding days. Penny knew our venue inside and out and gave us great suggestions about how we could use the main bridal bouquet and bridesmaids bouquets for the top table arrangement. This was an idea we’d never have come up with on our own. The highlight for us was the 3 floral wreaths we had suspended from the ceiling. These beautiful wreaths tied the whole barn together with natural beauty and made it feel truly elegant.

As cake lovers here at English Wedding we’d LOVE to know who made your cake, and how delicious it was?

We used Ben the Cake Man. He makes not just the tastiest cakes in the world but the most beautiful cakes! Due to the rustic nature of our wedding we wanted a naked cake, but Ben also makes the most incredible cakes that look like tree bark. The bottom tier of our cake looked like a log and was that convincing we had guests who didn’t believe it was really cake until we cut it later in the evening. We had 4 tiers and 4 different flavours. We weren’t keen on traditional fruits so we chose raspberry ripple, lemon, orange and cardamom and chocolate truffle. Our wedding was a beautiful summer day and these flavours complimented the day beautifully. We have guests that still comment on how delicious and amazing our cake was and we were so keen not to waste it we took what was left with us on our honeymoon to Miami!!

Tell us about any special personal touches, or creative projects you made yourselves

We both had grandparents that had already passed away but wanted them to still be a part of our day. We tracked down wedding photographs of both sets of grandparents on each side and our own parents to put in frames at the entrance of our wedding. It was a lovely way of combining our families together and our guests loved looking at the vintage dresses and working out who was related to who!

What was your first dance song? Why did you choose it?

Our wedding band, The Peaky Blinders, offered to learn our first dance song. They were a guitar duo and after discussions with them about songs they felt they could do justice to, we decided on the Pet Shop Boys song Go West. We chose this as we were becoming Mr and Mrs West and upon listening to the song properly we really loved the lyrics. The looks on our guests faces when they realised what the song was was priceless and amazing when they all joined in too.

Favourite wedding suppliers

https://www.loveweddingcars.co.uk/ Provided a wonderful wedding car and Bob our chauffeur was so supportive and calming on the trip to the church with my Dad and gave us some great tips on the way to the barn as a newly married couple.

https://photobooth.co/uk/Birmingham/ We weren’t too sure whether to hire a photo booth and then came across this company and knew we needed to and are so glad we did. We didn’t what a physical booth and liked that huge groups could come together. These are some of our funniest photos from the day and our guests absolutely loved it!

Claire Gould

Claire spends her days writing - either in beautiful calligraphy or online. She lives on the edge of the English Lake District only minutes away from the beach, where she loves to escape and unwind. Claire's calligraphy can be found at www.byMoonandTide.com. Claire launched the English Wedding Blog in November 2009 - it's been a top 10 UK wedding blog ever since, with a regional focus we hope you LOVE.

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