To kick off our regular ‘real wedding’ feature and by popular demand (thanks Instagram!) here is OUR wedding at Huntsmill Farm! We got married in May 2014 and the day started with torrential rain. Luckily by the time we were all ready and about to go off to the church the sun came out and held (just about) for the rest of the day.
We chose Huntsmill Farm for obvious reasons and it was lovely to create such happy memories at Henry’s childhood home. The accommodation also meant we could house a lot of my family plus our bridesmaids and ushers which was fab!
The morning of the wedding was all quite serene for me! I think Henry was running around doing a lot of jobs (soz) but I was oblivious, holed up in Blacksmith’s cottage with my family and bridesmaids. I chose Liv Burton to do my hair and make up and she could not have been lovelier. She did an amazing job and it felt like we were hanging out with a mate we’d known for years which meant we had a fun and relaxed morning.
My dress was a So Sassi dress called ‘Carmen’ by the designer Sassi Holford from the exquisite Ellie Sanderson bridal boutique in Oxford. I had no idea what type of dress I was going to like but had seen the Carmen dress online and kept coming back to it. The girls in Ellie Sanderson were really good at making sure I considered all types of dresses but in the end Carmen was the one. I had the neckline altered to a sweetheart style and changed up some of the colours and then it was perfect!
After a bit of high street perusing I found the bridesmaid dresses on ASOS. They suited everyone and the girls look amazing. I was a bit jealous I didn’t get to have one! Henry, his ushers and both dads wore tails from Suitors. They all looked so smart and I loved the classic look.
A highlight of the morning had to be Joules from Willow & Thyme arriving with the bouquets and buttonholes. We also ordered surprise corsages for both mothers as why should they miss out on some floral loveliness! The flowers were utterly utterly gorgeous. I’d given poor Joules a garbled description of the flowers I wanted with strict instructions for nothing spiky! She did a great job interpreting my ramblings and produced the most wonderful creations. Henry’s mum created the church flowers including the fabulous welly boot displays and also filled vintage tea pots with flowers for our tables.
Our photographer was the lovely Richard Jones. He really got us when we first met him and on the day we honestly didn’t notice he was there half the time! We also had the awesome Ben Walton video the day. I’m SO SO glad we did this as its lovely to look back on the day and see it unfold.
We got married at the beautiful St. Edward the Confessor church just over the road from the farm. The lovely Revd Liz Simpson let Henry’s childhood friend Greg, who’s also a vicar, participate in the ceremony which made it extra special for us. My gorgeous friend and bridesmaid Hannah read ‘a lovely love story’ by Edward Monkton and Henry’s good friend Tim read a bible reading from the book of Ruth! Leading up to the day I was slightly terrified about giggling during the vows or fainting but it all went very smoothly.
After the ceremony and a beautifully captured impromptu high five we all headed back to Huntsmill for canapés by Anise Catering (although I’m pretty sure I didn’t get to eat any of these!) and well-deserved prosecco. Richard then took us off for our photos and made sure the prosecco followed us all the way round. What more could you ask for?!
We had our reception in Henry’s traditional pole and rope marquee. We decorated it with bunting made by his very talented mum and paper lanterns in soft pastel colours. To cheer up the plastic chairs we tied ribbons to the back in coordinating colours. We also filled the dance floor with balloons as I LOVE them! Our favours were the American chocolate bars Baby Ruth and Oh Henry with a pin badge for either Mind or Cancer Research as these were both charities which had touched our lives and hearts. Kids were given a teddy bear from Ikea as we assumed their parents would rather they didn’t have the crazy sugar hit which is American candy! I also spent months sourcing vintage versions of the game Pit for the tables as it’s a game we love. It was a great ice breaker and we let guests take them home with them afterwards.
Before we knew it we were sitting down for the wedding breakfast. We had our speeches before dinner so those doing them could enjoy their food without worrying about it! As we’re not the formal types we went for a BBQ wedding breakfast with a simple bruschetta to start and passionfruit roulade for pudding.
Our stationery including save the dates, invitations, orders of service, menus and table names were designed by Tony, a supremely talented friend of my mum. I worked in publishing at the time and fell in love with the idea of using the penguin classic book design. Tony adapted it to give the penguins wellies and a top hat and veil! Our table names were Huntsmill Farm field names and with the help of my dad we got a big map to show where they all were on the farm.
Our cake was made by Henry’s ever so talented auntie Cathy and fit with our style perfectly. Our first dance was ‘Hey ho’ by The Lumineers and was sung live by our incredible band Firing Line.
Then the party started and all too soon the day was over!
We’re now coming up to our fifth wedding anniversary and we have such happy memories from such a brilliant day. Thank you to all our friends and family who helped us organise, achieve and celebrate the best day ever!
Venue – Huntsmill Farm (obvs) and St. Edward the Confessor church in Shalstone
Photographer – Richard Jones
Videographer – Ben Walton
Flowers – Willow & Thyme
Caterers – Anise Catering
Hair and make-up – Liv Burton
Bridesmaid dresses – ASOS
Tails – Suitors
Confetti – Shropshire Petals