Felicity and Simon Howe were married at The Great Barn Rolvenden, near Tenterden in Kent. This wedding has all our favourite elements of a Kent affair and we just love the atmosphere that’s been captured so beautifully by photographer, Rebecca Douglas.
We asked the couple to tell us about their day and how they planned their wedding. Felicity says “We chose The Great Barn as it’s a beautiful 18th century barn in the middle of a gorgeous country setting. It’s a lovely rustic building with loads of wooden beams and old rusty farm tools as decoration.”
“Our wedding style was informal, fun and rustic. We were very much inspired by the beautiful rural Kent setting and used it as a basis for our colour scheme of dusky pink, cream and olive green. I wanted our own personal touches and my friends and family helped out. My friend did my flowers and they were stunning. We had a mix of dried wheat, lavender and poppy heads with hydrangeas and spray roses. We then used jam jars with raffia as vases which my mum spent months collecting for us. The highlight was a huge wreath my friend made from scratch, which made a beautiful focal point for the back of the barn that guests could see behind us during the ceremony. A Bridesmaid made a chalkboard for our seating plan and decorated it with Nottingham lace, the city where Simon and I met at University and my best friend made all our wedding invitations. Simon’s Mum made our wedding cake and all the bunting which we used to decorate inside and outside the venue. My mum also did a powerpoint of photos of Simon and I through childhood until the present day which we had playing in a corner of the barn.”
Our civil ceremony was in the barn itself, with all our guests. It has two floors so we were able to have a separate area for the ceremony and reception. It was a really sunny afternoon so after the ceremony we went outside to the Orchard for Pimms, Gin and Tonics and tubs of handmade luxury ice cream – we had lots of fun picking out our favourites for our guests. We just had to make sure we got photos with the children before they ate their chocolate ones! We had a buffet style barbeque with steak, lamb, local sausages and salads. For dessert, we served homemade chocolate brownies, which my Bridesmaid Tillie and I baked the day before. As well as local wine and ale, we included Keo lager to drink as this is a family favourite from Cyprus where I used to live as a child.
After we were all full to the brim we chatted with guests in the Orchard, sitting on hay bales and enjoying the early evening sun. It was really relaxed and everyone was in such a good mood. It was lovely to get the chance to catch up with all our guests, particularly those who had come a long way. My dad is a natural performer and was in his element, delivering his speech and Simon and his best man Rob got a chance to celebrate their ‘bromance’, having been best friends since primary school.
For the wedding ceremony, my cousins played Irish folk music on the violin and classical guitar, in memory of Simon’s grandmother who was Irish and sadly passed away six months before the wedding. For the reception our first dance was ‘Let’s Get it Together’ by Toots and the Maytals and we had a band ‘The Rock Pins’ who played a mix of indie hits and classic pop/rock tunes which got everyone up on the dance floor all evening.”
Thanks so much for the couple of sharing their day with us and any final advice for our Bride and Groom’s to be? “Don’t let the temptation to do ‘everything’ take you over too much. At times, I realised I was getting a bit carried away with ideas for ‘small touches’ which probably wouldn’t be noticed. What our guests enjoyed was the company, the venue and the entertainment. We didn’t bother with favours, or a wedding car as those things weren’t important to us, but we wanted a really good band for the reception, and hired a coach to get people to and from the venue.”
Bride’s Outfit: Monsoon
Groom’s Outfit: Moss Bros
The Rock Pins – brilliant band
Simply Ice Cream – local luxury ice cream
Great Barn Weddings – rustic Kentish venue
Rebecca Douglas – We loved the vintage style photographs she produced for us which really capture the story of the day
Australian Style Catering – they couldn’t do more to help and the food was perfect, in very generous portions!
Biddenden Vineyards – delicious local wine and cider
Flowers 4 florists– cost effective wholesaler