Summer has and will always be the most popular time of year to get married. It’s easy to see why: the warmer and longer days mean you can celebrate your…
Written by Paula Jones Last updated: March 30, 2011
working together in a bar in Blackpool- not very glamorous!
29 (me) and 30 (him)
He got me to choose a ring for my christmas present and then let slip that it was an engagement ring. He then proposed officially on one knee at my parents house after he’d asked my Dad’s permission.
Hen party- day out at Chessington with friends and family, plus a meal at Pizza express. Also a weekend camping in a tipi in the Lake District with a few close friends. Rob had a big stag weekend in Newcastle.
Rob planned and booked the honeymoon and organised the wedding car, but mostly we did the ceremony and reception together from venues to menus. He left the small details to me though like what flowers to have and the dresses of course! We discussed ideas for the grooms men’s outfits but he made the final decision.
Confetti helped me loads for ideas from cakes to themes and decorations and especially with ideas for my dress. There is so much to do and to choose from that I found it really helped to have ideas to start with and adapt for our own theme.
yes, I mainly used it for keeping tabs on our guest list and budget.
I can’t remember what I bought from where! We definitely used confetti for some things for the reception, like ribbons and glass pebbles. We did a lot of the shopping online!
My dress was dark blue, and came from The Bridal Centre in Farnborough, the same shop where my sister got her wedding dress! It is nigh on impossible to get a dark blue wedding dress so mine was a specially customised Bridesmaids dress. It was a halter-neck with a fish tail and rouched detail, in Blue iridescent taffeta. My Mum added lace and over 100 hours of beading work to the waist and bust to to create an amazing custom dress. I made my veil from some dark blue milliners netting and a hair comb, with a fascinator from Debenhams to add some detail. My shoes were from a high street store- new look! Again it’s difficult to find blue shoes in wedding shops although they can dye them for you.
I had four bridesmaids, who were my two sisters and two best friends from Uni. They each wore a full length laced dress in the same iridescent taffeta in complementary shades of pinks and purples. I wanted lots of summery colours and they each suited a different shade so it looked lovely.
His original best man had to pull out at the last minute so two of Rob’s other mates stepped in at 2 weeks notice. They wore dark grey Prince Edward suits from Greenwoods, with the Sydney waistcoat and silver cravat and pale, dusky pink rose button holes. Rob had the same suit with a darker silver cravat and hankie and extra blue/purple flowers on his button hole.
We had a civil ceremony with a local registrar from Lancaster who was really friendly and put us all at ease. Finding music without any religious references was really challenging but we found Songs Without Words, a Classic FM album of instrumental versions of pop songs. I walked down the aisle to an orchestral version of U2′s With or Without you.
It was at Ashton Memorial in Williamson Park, Lancaster. It is a lovely dome-roofed tower on the hilltop, with a light and airy circular hall, marble floor and huge arched windows overlooking the park.
We held our reception at the Best Western Glendower Hotel in Lytham St Annes. All of the staff were so friendly and really helpful- they couldn’t do enough for us! And the food was excellent.
We had trouble finding a wedding car that would drive the distances between the venues so a friend drove us in his father’s gorgeous dark green jaguar. He even wore a suit and decorated the car with cream ribbons!
We had around 75 for the ceremony and reception, plus a few extra friends invited to the evening celebrations. Most of my family travelled quite a distance from the South of England so everyone was invited to the wedding breakfast.
We had the tables set mainly in white, with deep pinky purple serviettes and other accents of pinks and purples to match the Bridesmaids dresses.
We had antique style cut-glass bowls in the centres with floating pink Gerbera flowers and scented candles, clear and lilac glass pebbles scattered on the tables and favours in white, pale pink and lilac. We wanted all of the glass to sparkle and glitter in the candle light.
For the favours we decorated little white, pink and lilac candles with beads and a little heart pendant each. It took us ages! Most guests lit these candles during the evening, but we didn’t mind as it added to the atmosphere and they smelled lovely.
My florist was Amanda’s Posy Bowl in Poulton le Fylde, who did the flowers for my sister-in-law’s wedding. The bridesmaids each had a large hydrangea head to match their dress colour. I had a hand-tied bouquet of mixed summer flowers including blue/purple Lobelia, dusky pink roses and eucalyptus. I wasn’t too worried about specific blooms, I just wanted something with lost of summery colours and textures, nothing too formally arranged. I took some samples of ideas and colours to the florist and we chose a couple of my favourite flowers and the florist chose the rest to match. It was a wonderful surprise on the day as I didn’t know exactly what the final product would look like!
Our Hotel did all of the catering for us. We had wine on arrival and a sit-down buffet so that everyone could be there. We had Chicken brochettes, mini salmon tartlets, baby sausages with honey and sesame, vegetable pakoras and samosas, open sandwiches and a selection of sides such as salads and potato wedges.
We had a rich chocolate fudge cake baked by Kelly Cakes, iced by me and my Mum with my favourite Betty Crocker chocolate fudge icing! The hotel chef decorated it for us on the wedding day with fresh fruit like raspberries and red currants. We had it served with fresh pouring cream and summer berries, and sparkling rose wine in time for the speeches.
We had a DJ for the evening disco which was a great success. We knew the DJ from our years working in pubs so it was a really lovely atmosphere.
We didn’t have a traditional list but had a honeymoon gift list with our travel agent so people could contribute to our adventures. Our families knew we were planning to go scuba diving so many gave us gifts of Egyptian currency for our honeymoon. We also added that if guests preferred to give a more traditional present we would love picture frames in which to keep memories of the day and honeymoon. We got quite a few and they are all different so create a great eclectic mix on our walls and mantle piece!
Our first night we had a lovely suite in the reception Hotel complete with massive bed! It was so comfy so we had a great nights sleep (yes, sleep). Our honeymoon was at the Coral Sea Resort in Sharm el sheikh, Egypt, which is a Thomson and First Choice resort. It was lovely, with really friendly staff, several great pools with poolside bars, buffet meals and an al fresco restaurant. The food was great and being all inclusive was so relaxing! I loved having freshly made pancakes and pastries for breakfast, custom pizzas for dinner and packed lunches for all of the excursions.
Being showered with confetti by all of our friends and family! It was magical and we have some great photos as our friend is a photographer! (IBImagery) It was so relaxing having someone we knew photograph the day.
We had the best man drop out 2 weeks before the wedding which was stressful! Also we had a moment of panic on the way to the ceremony when the ribbons on the car started to split on the motorway! We had to stop on the hard shoulder to re-tie them before they went into the jaguars radiator! Plus my something borrowed was a gold dress watch of my Mum’s. We hadn’t realised it was on the blink so I thought I was late for the ceremony but the watch was wrong! I was really worried my groom might think I’d changed my mind! All in all we were quite lucky, no major disasters!
Don’t stress on the day and in the run-up to the wedding. Enjoy the day’s festivities and rituals and approach any problems with calm if they crop up. It doesn’t have to be a massive drama. Dealing with them promptly and sensibly actually reduces the impact they have on your day. The main thing is to enjoy the day and for us, the best bit was having all of the people who are important to us there with us to share in our celebration.