If you’re having a marquee wedding one of the biggest worries for couples is definitely how to decorate it. Over the next few weeks we’ll be bringing you some style advice on some of the more popular themes.
Part 1 is bringing the party Island of Ibiza closer to home. Synonymous with sunshine and celebrations galore inject some of that laid-back Balearic fun into your big day with a fantastic Ibiza style wedding lounge.
We chatted with Jo Morris of Rio Lounge Boutique Furniture hire who gave us some of her expert advice on how to create a wedding theme that brings with it full on Mediterranean charm…….
1. Brilliant White Ibiza
Your choice of furniture will really add to any theme so go for modular rattan furniture in the classic colour of Ibiza, a stunning brilliant white. Dress with scatter cushions to add a pop of colour (why not use your wedding palette), creating comfort and softening the look.
2. Chilled Out Guests
Don’t forget the all important chill-out area where your guests can take a breather from the party and catch up with one another. You can do this in a quieter part of the marquee which is sectioned off from the main area, in an adjoining section or if it’s sunny you can always take it outside.
3. Bubbles & Buckets
Nothing says Ibiza like a chilled glass of Champagne so keep it nice and cool with classic champagne buckets dotted around your bar and lounge areas. Make sure you have a plentiful supply of ice for guests to add to those summer cocktails too!
4. A Wed Bed
Daybeds are an absolute must. They’re a really unique way for your guests to chill out and enjoy each others company. Chat and relax on a Miami day bed; soak up the sun on a Mykonos day bed; or get match-making with the Antibes double day bed!
5. Camera & Action
White director’s chairs are simply gorgeous for the dining area. They are just so evocative of summer days and you can almost hear the Med lapping on the shore! Comfortable and practical they really add a sense of sophisciation. Don’t forget the poser tables and bar stools as well, so your guests can mingle near the bar and dance floor adding to that fabulous party atmosphere.
6. When the Summer Sun Sets
Ibiza really comes to life after dark, so don’t forget the lighting for when the sun goes down. Lanterns create a great atmosphere outdoors and simple coloured lighting really makes the theme rock. Banish the British climate in the evening by adding some patio heaters to keep guests enjoying the outdoors as long as possible.
Thanks to Jo for her help and advice in creating that very cool Ibiza vibe. I’m off to pop the Cafe del Mar remix on the iPod…..
Your wedding should be your own little love story beautifully told. And these invitations tick all the right boxes to get your story started. Not only do they look really unique but they tell your guests your journey so far. As Wedding Planners we always tell our couples to keep the wedding as personal as you can, as thats what makes it unique to you. There’s no better time to start this than when sending out your invitations.
These cute and fun invitations are made by RSVP Candy and are the story of you, who you are, where you’ve been and how you decided to get married. Quirky, sweet and utterly brilliant for stamping your personality on your wedding. Once you have the words for your story you can then add retro inspired illustrations and the back has all your wedding day details. You can even personalise each invitation with your guests names in vintage font.
Prices start from £299 for 100 invitations and theres the option to add other wedding stationery too.
Go on start your wedding story today!
When it’s cold and dark outside I love nothing more than having bright and colourful flowers at home (it was my birthday last week and I was very spoilt with lots of gorgeous bouquets!). The colours are amazing and it got me thinking about adding a sharp burst of colour to Winter weddings. Striking colours are often associated with summer weddings but we just love these Bridesmaids dresses to add glamour and a strong colour palette to any winter wedding. What do you think?
Debut at Debenhams
Featured Image: Ruffled Blog
Louise and Kees were married back in May this year at the very unique Preston Court, near Canterbury. We asked the fabulous smiling bride, Lou to tell us about their day.
How did you choose your wedding venue?
It was the first and only venue we looked at. We knew it was the right venue for us straight away. We booked it shortly after getting engaged just over 18 months before our wedding. We wanted to get married somewhere a bit different. I absolutely love planning things so was in my element and Anna and Jenny at Preston Court were very helpful.
There were 70 guests during the day with another 40 in the evening.We had an informal ceremony which was conducted outside with our guests sitting on picnic blankets. Two friends did readings from “No Matter What” and “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin”.
Who were your wedding photographer and videographers?
We chose Laura and Jody from Lollypop Photography. We did lots of research online into different styles of wedding photography, we looked through tons of photographer’s websites. We then met with Laura and Jody and felt that they understood what we wanted to achieve and they really put us at ease.
We also had a video by Andy and Nigel from Cine8. We got on well with Andy and Nigel and loved the vintage style of super 8 film. They even provided a guest Cine camera so our guests could have a go at filming too!
Did you have a theme for your wedding?
We had a ‘vintage’ them but basically we fell in love with the venue and fitted it around that. We just tended to buy things that we liked and hoped that it would all come together!
I handmade our table plan, place cards, table numbers and signs for the confetti cones and sweetie bar. I also made personalised colouring in books for all the children and letters out of gypsophelia for the backs of mine and Kees’ chairs. Our wooden directional signs were handmade by my sister and her husband and my mum and I sourced all vases and jars we needed from various places over 18 months. I made a basket of flip-flops, tied with bows for our guests to kick off their high heels and dance in the evening!
I painstakingly handmade all of our favours and most of our stationery using a personalised stamp. We wanted the colours to compliment the fairground organ in the barn so we used pastel pinks, blues, greens and greys.
Who did your wedding flowers?
My (very talented) mum did all the flowers, table centres, buttonholes, all floral decorations and bouquets, including a Jack Daniels bottle of flowers in the men’s loos! I had white peonies, Pink O’Hara roses and lamb’s ears (Stachys byzantina) as foliage. I picked flowers that I loved, my grandparents used to have lamb’s ears in their garden when I was a child. I spent many a weekend choosing flowers with my mum!
What did you have to eat?
Canapes: Fish and Skinny Chip Cones, Mini Hog Roast Burgers, Paneer Tikka Naans, Goat’s Cheese and Red Onion Tartlet.
Starters were Poached Scottish salmon on potato & chive salad with watercress crème fraiche & balsamic dressing or
Tomato & Mozzarella Salad with rocket, and a drizzle of olive oil and balsamic. Main course was Chicken breast in a basil & honey cream sauce garnished with beetroot crisps, sautéed new potatoes and a medley of seasonal vegetables or Potato and Leek Tart with a butternut squash puree. We had a trio of desserts with Banoffee Pie, Baileys Eton Mess and Lemon Tart. The children had Garlic Doughballs, Chicken fillets with homemade potato wedges and fruit trifle. The food was amazing!
How did you celebrate in the evening?
It was a reasonably big party! Everyone was either dancing or on the carousel. As it was a lovely warm evening lots of people were relaxing outside plus trying the sweetie bar or photo booth. A memorable moment for me, was late in the evening when me and Kees were going round on the carousel. It was a lovely view point to watch all of our friends and family having a good time.
If you could change one thing about your wedding day what would it be?
I’d try and stop the day flying past so quickly! Also I would have had USB sticks available for guests to put their photos on and post to us while we were on honeymoon!
Brides Contact Book
Brides Dress: Maggie Sottero from Jodi Bridal in Canterbury
Brides Shoes: Dune. Plus pink spotty converse – although I didn’t get round to wearing them!
Brides Jewellery: A necklace from Dower & Hall and a bracelet from Cornells in Maidstone. Engagement and wedding ring Fitzgeralds
Grooms Outfit: Next
Cufflinks: A gift from the Bride by Mary Fellows
Flower Girls: Monsoon
Vintage postbox: Temptation Towers
Caterers: Relish – the food was amazing!
Wedding cake: Creative Cakes
Transport: Fiat 500 Hire
Band: The Redfords, who did an acoustic set in the day and then the full band in the evening. They were brilliant, everyone loved them. Our first dance was to JJ Heller – When I’m With You.
Personalised items including Cake toppers and wedding dress hanger: Etsy
Make Up: Bridal Make Up by Danielle Parish (Facebook)
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
Shelley and James were married at Fraser’s of Coldharbour Farm, in Egerton back in May 2012 with 80 guests to the day and 130 in the evening.
Here Shelley tells us about their day, “We wanted a laid back wedding, nothing too formal with a country feel – ‘pomp’ wouldn’t have really been us. We’ve been together for thirteen years and have small families, so the wedding was really a big party with all our friends!
We wanted somewhere in the countryside, out-of-the-way where we could hold the ceremony and the reception with a relaxed but professional feel. Originally we had been looking at venues in Cornwall, but we decided to move the wedding back home to Kent and Fraser’s was recommended to us. At the reception we decided to have all the guests on 3 big long tables, and the food was all put in the middle so everyone had to talk to each other and pass food around. It worked really well and we had to prise people apart in the evening to get the dancing started!”
Shelley says “We had the amazing Kerry Ann Duffy as our photographer. It was a really easy choice. We already knew we wanted Kerry after seeing her portfolio, but we met with another photographer whose images were a bit more formal just to see how they differed. When we sat down with Kerry and she talked us through how she does everything, we knew we’d made the right choice. I hate having my picture taken but she made me feel so comfortable. When we got the pictures back after our honeymoon they blew us away, we were so happy.
“For my bouquet I had freesia, ranunculus, roses, rosemary and thistles as James’s family are Scottish. The four bridesmaids each had a different bouquet, using tulips, roses, freesia and hyacinths. The boys’ buttonholes were freesia and James had a thistle added to his.
On the tables we had five tall vases filled with puss willows and either roses, ranunculus, tulips, hydrangea or hyacinths around the bottom. We then had about 30 jam jars on each table, wrapped in either yellow, green, white or tartan ribbon, each with different flowers in. The table centres were agreed on after much too-ing and fro-ing of ideas with our very lovely and patient florist Julia from Sweet William Florists in Headcorn. Julia also made us a beautiful top table display – all of our flowers were just beautiful. They went perfectly with our country colour theme of yellow, green and white.
For the reception we made the table plan ourselves, using an old picture frame from my Nan and Grandad’s house and putting card in the middle to hold the names. The menus were in the style of our invitations. The place cards were handwritten on card and pegged onto the wine glasses. Our invitations had our initials on them so we took that theme forward and had wooden letters on the Guest Book table and gave initial themed gifts to the Ushers and Bridesmaids. The table names were herbs, so we potted up sage, thyme, rosemary and parsley and wrote the herb names on a big piece of slate. We then tucked a small piece of each herb under the ribbon of each napkin. It was time-consuming but worth it! I was worried that it wouldn’t all come together – as it’s hard to imagine what everything will look like when you are making it all at home – but it was even better than I pictured in my head.”
“The music we played was the most personal part of our wedding, as we both love music so much and having been together so long there were lots of songs that had special meaning for us. We spent ages choosing what to have when we signed the register, walking back down the aisle, first dance with my dad, first dance with each other and the songs we wanted played during the evening. We only got our choices back to the DJ a couple of weeks before, and the form was full of crossings out and amendments where we kept changing our minds!”
Finally we asked Shelley what advice they would give to other couples and she said, “Do it your way. Don’t be bullied into spending too much or too little, or having things you don’t want.
The only thing I would have done differently is made sure I had someone passing the guest book round, as not as many people wrote in it. Also I did have an excellent idea for my cakes about two days after the wedding which I’m annoyed I didn’t think of earlier! But the only people who will really remember your day and all the details are you.
Make it mean something to you both and you can’t go wrong. During the planning people will say and do things that upset you without realising they have. Take a step back and try to work out if you are being a bit over sensitive or whether it is something that will genuinely affect you and the day.”
Other Wedding Contacts:
Entertainment/DJ: BeeJay Entertainments
Wedding Cake & Cupcakes: Lellas Cupcakes
Bride, Grooms and Bridesmaids Outfit: All by Bride & Groom Ltd
Brides Shoes: Harriet Wilde
Jewellery: Tiffany & Co
If you’re hankering after a vintage wedding then this stunning wedding shoot is just for you. Photographer Alan Harbord and the team spent the day recreating the 1920’s and 1950’s at one of the Wedding Dolls favourite venues, The George in Rye. Beautiful pictures, gorgeous venue and fabulous inspiration – enjoy!
Photography: Alan Harbord
Venue: The George in Rye
Flowers: Florist in the Forest
Wedding Gowns: Victoria Allinson Couture
Styling & Props: Bellaboo and Beau
Birdcage Cake: Angharad Llywelyn Wedding Cakes
If you are going for a vintage or a gorgeous English country garden wedding theme you can’t go far wrong with including bunting in your styling mix. It’s a Wedding Dolls favourite and we’re not alone. Sue Maulin, owner of Bunting Boutique just loves bunting and makes gorgeous metres of it for weddings and other special occasions. We met Sue a few weeks ago and whilst we were admiring her handiwork she told us “Now, we may be biased, but we think that our Bunting is just the ticket to finish off any wedding space. We’ve transformed barns, marquees, dancefloors, top tables, Wedding cake tables and much more.”
If you’re planning a vintage themed wedding, then their vintage doily and linen bunting is the perfect accessory. We just love the detail involved and it’s so different from anything else we’ve seen.
If you want to personalise your own bunting then Sue tells us “we can hand embroider letters onto linen to create any words or phrases, or we can design and make Bunting to your specification. You can choose the patterns, fabric and colour scheme of your choice to guarantee it fits perfectly wherever it ends up hanging.”
Sue says “Our studio is an Aladdins cave, we are surrounded by a myriad of fabrics, tools, nic-nacs and trinkets. We lovingly sew each piece of bunting, the colour and fabric of every single piece carefully selected.” Just visit their website for a fabulous gallery of bunting images and more information about how you can order yours.
If you’re having a vintage wedding or traditional afternoon tea theme then you’ll love Alice and the teacup who hire vintage crockery and accessories in Kent and Sussex.
We caught up with the proud owner, Clair Hinge who gave us the low down on her business inspiration. She says “I’m always on the look for crockery to add to my collection. When travelling around I simply cannot resist a rummage around a local charity shop or flea market. My mind is ever-bubbling with ways to make use of my pieces.”
When asked what gave her the inspiration for her business, she says “My love affair with china started with a tatty box from the loft that contained a beautiful tea set that once belonged to my beloved late Nanny Cox. My Nan always hankered after the ‘posh’ and took great pride in getting out the expensive china when guests came for tea. Whatever memories I have of Nanny Cox always seem to finish with her sharing a cup of tea and biscuits!”
As well as a beautiful range of vintage crockery, Clair also has for hire linen, glassware, cutlery, vintage furniture pieces and accessories to really give any wedding a fabulous vintage theme. Prices range from £1.50 per cup and saucer to £6.00 for a 3-tier cake stand.
Plus they have a gaggle of ‘tea ladies’ that are available to serve in vintage inspired uniform as well as a washing up service. So you get all of the benefits and none of the hard work. Exactly what you need on your wedding day!
All images: Alice and the teacup