Sabina and Saleem June 1999 - How did you meet? We met in the Summer of 1996, when she was over here on a holiday, she came back and we…
Written by Sahdia Qayyum Last updated: June 22, 2015
Nothing says summer wedding than a country fete. Charlotte and Alan’s amazing colourful country themed wedding was achieved with a little DIY help from their family and friends, we love the garden games and the homemade bunting! If you’re planing a summer wedding or need a little DIY inspiration this wedding is for you. Enjoy!
One summers evening in June 2013, Alan asked if I wanted to go for a walk to some waterfalls close to where we live. As we approached the top Alan suggested we have a sit down, which is something we would never usually do. Out of his pocket he pulled an old ring box and inside was a beautiful antique three stone ring. I recognised the ring from a local antiques shop, I’d been admiring it in there the previous month and Alan had bought it without me knowing and asked the owner of the shop to tell me it had been sold if I went in again and asked. Alan proposed by saying “I wanted us to get engaged somewhere we could bring our children to so we can tell them that this is where Daddy asked Mummy to marry him so will you be my wife?” I cried obviously.
As soon as we were engaged, I could not wait to try on dresses. I tried on loads but I knew I wanted a one shoulder dress and luckily for our bank balance, one shoulder dresses were so last season. I managed to get the dress of my dreams for a fraction of the price and I felt like a million dollars. I wore simple pearl and diamond earrings borrowed from my mum, a hand-made pearl and crystal hair clip made by my lovely friend Pamela, and blue stilettos to match the bridesmaid’s dresses. I switched to blue Converse pumps when the disco started and I also had some blue wellies on standby just in case.
We had a Church Wedding in St Stephens Catholic Church in Skipton.
Alan’s Groomsmen had a busy day. With so much going on in the fete and being organised by ourselves there were lots of jobs that needed doing and a few disasters that had to be averted. They put in a much harder shift than most groomsmen and didn’t get to let their hair down until quite late in the day, which is probably why they were still in the marquee at 5.30am trying to make sure we didn’t have any leftovers on the bar.
Harry from Tudor Photography Photographed my wedding. Alan’s family have known Harry for a long time and even though he is based in Oxfordshire he came up to Yorkshire especially for our wedding. As a bride it was great to have a photographer who I knew and who had taken photos at other functions I had been at as I felt so relaxed with him. The group photos were done so quickly with everyone looking at the camera and smiling! He made everything so much fun and captured the joy of the day perfectly. Harry is an excellent photographer and puts everyone at ease. He makes people laugh while taking their photograph and he captures everything in the first shot!
My bridesmaids are all really good friends from different stages in my life. I had four in total, Louise and Lynn from School, my little Sister Alexandra and finally, my Maid of Honour was Holly who was the first friend I made during fresher’s week at the University of Hull in 2004.
We had a homemade, hand crafted wedding with tonnes of help from family and friends. We hired a marque and we decorated the it with metres and metres of bunting made by Alan’s mum. We had our marque reception at Newton Grange near Gargrave, Skipton. We paid for exclusive use of the land and the accommodation on site which is picturesque and gave us the freedom to do what we wanted with the marquee and outside areas. We had a hog roast for the Wedding Breakfast and in the evening pie and peas with pork pies from the butcher at the end of our road. Alan loves those pies so it was really personal to us.
If we had to define a theme I suppose it would be Village Country Fate. Alan and I love village fates and everyone loves a Tombola and a coconut shy. We wanted to give our guests a fun day they would remember. We had homemade sloe gin and a free bar which helped everyone get into the swing of things. The 3 legged race was a particular favourite and we turned part of the speeches into the prize giving. We put collection tins on all of the fate games and on the free bar in the marque and we raised over £1250 for Leukaemia research which is a charity close to both of our hearts.
We loved seeing all of my friends and family having so much fun at the fete, the prize giving and how happy people where if they won a prize. Getting fabulous photographs of Alan and I in the beautiful surroundings. However, the best of all was the silent disco. Our friends still talk about the silent disco even now and we loved that we could cater for all ages and our nans could still hear themselves think. Everything was achieved thanks to the support of friends and family. Aunties and uncles helped collect sloes for the sloe gin, my mum sourced trios from car boot sales, our neighbours provided the flowers from their gardens, the deserts were provided by a friend as a wedding gift, my aunty Ann made my wedding cake, Alan made the bar and sweet car, Alan’s mum made the 200 metres of bunting and my friend Pamela made over 100 rosettes. We could not have had our dream day without so many of our friends and family helping out. They made it so special and we have definitely got a few favours to repay.
My younger brother gave a ‘Father of the Bride’ speech which turned the concept on its head. He went through his childhood and talked about how I had looked after him and got him out of trouble over the years. He delivered it so well that all of the guests were really touched by the idea.
It is ok to think about every little detail, you are not going to be able to help yourself. But when your big day comes you need to just embrace everything that happens. I tripped up walking down the aisle, I said “I do” at the wrong time and the crackers for our evening cheese and crackers went missing so our guests just had to eat cheese with a slice of wedding cake. You don’t know what the day will bring but one thing is for certain it’s yours and your husband’s day and you need to enjoy every second of it!
Bridal Dress: Copper stones Bridal Liverpool | Grooms attire: Moss Bros | Flowers and Bouquets: Karen Ingham |Photographer: Harry Rhodes, Tudor Photography | Wedding Cake: Ann Walsh | Catering: Pickles Pubs outside bar and catering | Wedding Hair: World of Hair and Beauty Skipton | Reception Venue: Newton Grange, Gargrave | Ceremony Venue: St Stephens Skipton