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Our Wedding Reception & Decor

Those of you who’ve followed the blog quite regularly might know about my passion for design and styling; having worked in the theatre and as a home designer…I’m all for the pretty details!!! It was my love of styling that led to me creating this blog – an outlet for all my ideas and that same desire has also led me to set up the business of my design dreams Dressed With Love

So here’s me really baring all. Here is my wedding style. Created from all the design bits of loveliness I’ve gathered over eighteen months, further inspired by some of my favourite blogs including Rock My Wedding, Love My Dress and Elizabeth Anne Designs, further mixed with our personal style as a couple {which has evolved over the past 10 years}  and the expectations of the beautiful, love-filled day I’ve been planning since I first felt the flutterings of enduring love towards my now husband. I hope you enjoy…

A few weeks ago I posted up our wedding mood board, which you can see here. My aim when making it was to create a wedding not only brimming with colour but full of our own personalities. We’re a laid-back couple, we don’t like pomp and ceremony and if in doubt, always err on the side of comedy. I doubt you can tell that from our mood board, but it’s certainly the feel we hoped to create for our day…

Assisted by my very own ‘Team Wedding’ which included my Bridesmaids, Sister-in-law and friends Amry and Dave, as well as my ‘ambassador of style’ Kate Fletcher, who not only acted as on-the-day coordinator, but also travelled down a day early armed with accessories from her other creative business Vintage Style Hire, we spent the Friday transforming an old, lofty, characterful barn into the ultimate reception venue for our laid-back, fun and colourful wedding!

It’s been quite well documented on the blog that I fought with the venue coordinator to ensure we could have trestle tables and lime-wash chairs…at times I worried that I was ploughing too much energy into sweating the small stuff, but as it felt like big stuff to me and I really didn’t want to compromise on design, I am now so glad I did. They worked perfectly in our long narrow barn and I loved how Adam and I were able to blend in amongst our guests!

We covered the tables in hessian and I scoured antique shops and ebay for old ink bottles to hold our blooms as I knew both would be a cheaper option than hiring tablecloths and having more floral arrangements created. Plus I loved how rustic the raw fabric looked against the brickwork in the barn and all those gorgeous glass bottles now have a place in our home.

The letters on the backs of everyone’s chairs were to represent our love of words. I love writing and have made lots of features throughout our home of letters and prints, so it seemed like a fun thing to do. We ordered the first letter of everyone’s christian names and tied them to the chairs with ribbon. We didn’t buy/make any favours, but instead encouraged our guests to take the letters home. We added more colour to the tables by making fabric napkins out of eye-catching remnants – thanks for your handy-work Mum!

I stumbled across The Hanging Lantern Companywhilst researching paper brollies for a photoshoot and immediately fell in love! Not only would they add more colour to the reception space, but they’d also bring the ceiling height down – creating a much more intimate feel. Result. I ordered a heap of them in different shades of pink and orange, different sizes and a handful of florist lights to hang in them.

Our ‘guest-book’ was actually a collection of white plates from Sainsbury’s, as I wanted something we’d see rather than pack away. They’re going up on the wall of our stairs…

The delicious food was supplied by local company Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner. Kris and Lee used to run a local restaurant {which I loved} so we were really happy to find they were now catering weddings and events. They worked with us to create an informal and tasty seasonal feast of spit-roasted Dartmoor lamb and salads and we had strawberries and clotted cream for dessert. Keeping things seasonal and local was very important to us and it also helped save pennies! At 10pm a snack of Cornish pasties were delivered to our guests to ensure no one went home hungry – although I missed out {too busy dancing} I hear they were delicious!

We had planned to set up the bar outside so folks could sit out in the courtyard on hay bales and mingle by the fire pit {a eureka moment from Kate – which was an amazing addition to the evening} but as more rain was a threat, we decided to cram it into a small room attached to the barn. My wonderful friends Kimmy and Laura had hurriedly decorated it the evening before – adoring every inch with fairly lights – those, plus the insanely cool neon sign that had been made for us as our wedding gift from friends Andy and Kirsty {Andy owns A1 Designs – and created the stunning Louboutins sign for Selfridges} transformed a dark, damp space into the funkiest bar area!!!

As you probably all know – dessert tables are very en vogue at the moment and rightly so. Well, we’re not crazy about dessert so much as we are cake fiends…so a cake bar was on the wedding ‘must-have’ list from very early on! I asked those of my friends who can bake – to bake away and Ann, Kim, Paula and Laura most definitely delivered – with offerings of brownies, cheesecake, pound and cupcakes to name but a few. We also ordered cupcakes from Lindsays Cakes and our next door neighbour Mark made the uber fabulous, traditional victoria sponge!

I’d sourced an array of vintage glassware from charity shops {costing me £11 in total!} and juxtaposed these pieces with neon plastic tableware from Matalan – as I didn’t want the look to be too ‘vintage’. Kate brought the little steps, crates and suitcase {her genius idea to display the cake that way!} and laid the whole table out for me on the morning of the wedding. The oh so cute and kooky ‘love birds’ was made by regular guest blogger and friend Katy Howieson. You may also notice the gorgeous cuff I’m wearing in the evening…a gift from Katy and more of her beautiful handiwork.

We ♥ music and it was hugely important that the party rocked. From the offset Ads and I knew we’d like a live band and after hearing a Beatles track in the car and both singing along emphatically, we decided a tribute band was the way forward. The first band double-booked and it was thanks to a Twitter shout-out and some help from Alison Tinlin {aka @MrsP&P} that we booked The Fab Beatles, an Exeter based band they are the mutts nuts! It was like we were witnessing a genuine Beatles gig – they sung the roof off the venue and everyone was dancing, singing and having the time of their lives!

To end, I just want to say that your wedding day will conform to all the cliches your told about…it really is the greatest of occasions and so worth putting time into. Whatever your budget – you can still have the day of your dreams. Surround yourself with those dearest to you, embrace each others ideas, hold tightly on to each other and steal as many private moments as possible and you’ll be sure to enjoy the ride. We might have planned the ultimate outdoor wedding…but wind, rain and hail was clearly meant to be….it created so many incredible moments and memories – we wouldn’t change a thing!

With Love,

Sarah, Boho Bride xx

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Reena October 13, 2011, 8:52 am

    Beautiful! I recognise some of the photos : )
    Ps we love our letters thank u! They are hung above our headboard!

  • Eve Ashby October 13, 2011, 10:50 am

    Beautiful styling – really love all the bight colours. The room looks transformed. Plus you look fab too, xx

  • Lucy October 13, 2011, 11:10 am

    You’ve described it all so beautifully…but where is the mention and piccie of you signing ‘hey jude’? That was definitely a highlight for me! xxxxx

  • Natasha October 13, 2011, 1:07 pm

    I never normally comment on anything, but I have been following your blog for a few months now as I start to plan my own wedding next year and I just wanted to say not only how stunning you looked but also what a beautiful day you created! I’ve gone back and read each part at least twice already..Stunning! xx

  • Charlie October 13, 2011, 2:42 pm

    What a beautiful venue you created for your wedding – I love so many details, especially the hessian tablecloth and ink bottles for flowers. Lovely xXx

  • Kate Fletcher October 13, 2011, 4:00 pm

    Ah! I need honeymoon photographs now to keep it going. Gorgeous and thanks for the lovely mentions. Xx

  • admin October 13, 2011, 6:56 pm

    Thank you all so much for your lovely comments – it’s felt very scary posting up our own wedding, so really lovely to hear such kind responses!

    Natasha – huge congrats, I hope all your plans are going well…enjoy every minute! xxx

  • emma walters October 13, 2011, 9:40 pm

    WOW! Everything looks absolutely amazing…. I wish you both forever happiness x

  • Helen October 20, 2011, 12:26 pm

    Wow your wedding looked amaazing!! After reading this i am going to book the fab beatles 🙂 xx

  • Sarah October 20, 2011, 2:03 pm

    Thanks Helen…and go for it – The Fab Beatles are amazing!!! Xx

  • Stacey October 24, 2011, 7:03 pm

    What a fantastic day! Your venue looked beautiful and all the little details really add a personal touch and made your special day really unique. I am even more convinced now that I need your help with my wedding. We have very similar taste by the looks of it! xxx

  • Sarah October 24, 2011, 8:21 pm

    Oh thanks Stacey – what a lovely comment! xx

  • Bella November 10, 2011, 3:29 pm

    where did you get your name place settings (the brown name tags) from?? And did you write the names yourself? Thanks!

  • admin November 10, 2011, 3:59 pm

    Hi Bella, I got them from our local post office – they’re just cardboard luggage labels and cost 99p for a pack of eight. I’ve seem them in other shops like WH Smith and craft stores. The writing was done with a basic school stencil template – from the ‘back to school’ section of WH Smiths.

    Hope this helps! Sarah xx