Today’s offering is a hugely exciting real wedding for me to feature! Not only did the wedding take place at the same, stunning venue I’ll be getting married at – but the gorgeous celebration was documented by the hugely talented and very lovely photographer Lucy Shergold, who will be capturing my own wedding day.
Beautiful Bride Louise has written the most exquisite commentary of hers and James’ wedding day, so without any further delay, I give you their wedding story…
“James and I met at secondary school when we were 15 sitting next to each other in geography class. We have been together ever since then. It hasn’t always been easy and we have had to go long distance for many years! James had a Gap year in Australia before University and we went to different universities to study geography in Swansea and Portsmouth respectively, and I spent a year living in Spain at University there! So we had high phone bills and spend most of our spare cash on travel expenses!
After University we went travelling and then moved to Plymouth but it was whilst on a visit to James parents in Truro for James Birthday, that James proposed on a walk with the dogs by the Fal River early in the morning…
We wanted to keep the wedding a relaxed as we could, which reflected on our styles. We didn’t want a too ridged colour theme but keep things colourful and summery. My bridesmaids and I picked the bridesmaid dresses which I had made in lemon and James picked a vibrant pink and navy suit from Moss Bros ( I let James choose what he wanted to wear so its a good job it all matched!) I wanted a simple dress which didn’t swamp me as I’m petite so I had to be careful! My dress was by Veromia which I got from The Wedding Collection , I couldn’t recommend them enough -they were very friendly. They really recognised my style and helped me make the right decision.
My favourite flowers are daisies, and I wanted them featured in the day, but apart from that I was very relaxed as to which flowers we had, as long as they were in season and grown locally. A family friend did our flowers and as a wedding gift to us another family friend did our wedding stationary.On the day after an early morning walk on the beach my good friend did my hair and Kudos in Bideford did my Bridesmaids hair which was absolutely gorgeous! James and his family had a game of rounder’s on Instow beach before the wedding.
We got married in Bideford Methodist church and were married by the Minister from the secondary school where we met. The day was very emotional for me as my Dad died when I was 17 and my mum gave me away. My Dad and James dad were teachers at the school where we met so the service was very personal. My sister played the piano (Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence) and both our godfathers gave a reading (one from the book Captain Corelli’s Madolin about advice on love from a father to his daughter, and the poem ‘the owl and the pussy cat’) we walked out the church to one of our favourite songs ‘Mr Blue Sky’ by ELO.
For the reception, we decided on the venue of Tapeley Park in North Devon as it seemed right to get married in a place which overlooks where we grew up. What we liked about Tapely was its relaxed atmosphere, amazing views, and the fact we could have a marquee on the lawn. At Tapeley we had West Country Catering for our wedding buffet – a hog roast and a selection of desserts such as lemon tart, raspberry and chocolate cheesecake and profiteroles. This suited our style of day and it all went down very well.
Our tables were named after beaches that we have been to on our travels and the the marquee was decorated by bunting which was made by James mum. After the wedding buffet we had a Cellidh Band Swains Gold which got everybody up dancing to reflect my Scottish family but they also had lots of English themed music as well, it was fantastic! One of my bridesmaids make sparkly flip flops for myself and the bridesmaids which I would recommend as a day in heels was too sore on the feet!
What made the day very special was the ‘wishing tree’ which Hector Christie the owner of Tapeley left for us in the marquee, it was a gorgeous idea, as relative and friends wrote messages and wishes on luggage labels to hang on the tree for us. As to can imagine, as the night went on the more silly the messages got due to the flowing alcohol! We also had a disco by Starlight Entertainment and boogied the night away.
I would definitely recommend keeping things simple (and not training to be a teacher and moving house in the same year as planning a wedding which is what I did!) The main thing for us was that people felt relaxed and that there was plenty of food and alcohol to go round! So many friends and family offered their services to help out on the day which made it all the more personal and meaningful. I would also always remember that although the dress and the invitations and colour scheme is important, the feeling of having everyone you care about under one roof really is amazing!
We left early the next morning to go to the island of Miljet in Croatia were we had an amazing honeymoon ! I really could not recommend Croatia enough, it was sooo amazing and perfect for a summer honeymoon.”
OK, I know you might think I biased…but beyond the obvious heart flutter that this wedding gives me, there is one big reason why it works so beautifully…Louise and James. Whilst I’m the biggest advocate of the pretty details, the beautiful thread that runs through this wedding, is the fact that it was created so personally. The structure and feel of this celebration didn’t come from a particular colourway, a style of dress or from the venue…it came from the Bride and Groom and the unique things that make them tick – like Louise’s love of daisies, a game rounders on Instow beach…and their history as childhood sweethearts.
Louise and James, thank you so much for sharing your day x
Update: I first witnessed the talents of photographer Lucy Shergold on the pages of the wonderful Wed Magazine and have just discovered that they will be featuring even more of this stunning wedding in their next Wed Devon issue, which will be hitting the shelves imminently! Bag your copy here