Louise and Nick
22/06/2007 – Barn at Oaks Farm in Shirley
How and when did you meet?
We met at a BBQ in July 2003. My friend didn’t want to go on her own so I joined her and met Nick. We kept in touch and saw each other at weekends. Nick moved to the USA with work not long after we started seeing each other. We could not bear to be so far apart, I gave up my job and joined him six months later.
How old are you both?
I am 27 and Nick is 31.
Where, when and how did he (or you!) propose?
We went to Rome for five days as my birthday treat in 2006. On my birthday we went to dinner at a cosy little restaurant near Campo dei Fiori, then walked to Piazza Navona where we had ice cream and coffee. On the walk back to the hotel, we passed the Trevi Fountain. Whilst stopping to admire it Nick got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife.
Did you have hen and stag celebrations? If so, what did you do?
I spent my hen day at Epsom Derby with the girls, my mum and mum-in-law. We all got dressed up (as the Queen was there it was rude not to) and we looked great – the bridesmaids had rosettes with titles and names on which everyone loved. I was quite successful with the betting and made a fair profit! Afterwards we went back to our hotel in Kingston where the bridesmaids presented me with a personalised thong saying ‘property of Nick Edwards’ and several personalised bottles of wine. We went out for Tapas at a local restaurant where the placemats were all a collage of me when I’d been drinking, rather embarassing but fun. Nick went to Devon with the boys for the weekend. They played golf, had surfing lessons and went clay pigeon shooting – they drank alcohol in excess of course, but not during the organised events! When they went out for a meal Nick was made to wear a pair of swimming armbands, a pair of goggles and a rubber ring – needless to say he got plenty of ridiculing from everyone who saw him!
How did your groom help with the wedding planning?
I did the research, got things down to two or three choices then we made the final decisions together. He also organised the suits for the men.
Did you use confetti to plan your wedding? If so, how did the website help you?
I used the forums which I found totally invaluable. The girls on there were really helpful, supportive and full of ideas – meaning we actually spent more than we initially intended, but it was worth it!
Did you buy any confetti products for your wedding? If so, did you visit a store, buy online or by mail order?
I bought books for Nick (the Groom’s wedding) and my Dad (the Father of the Bride’s wedding and Speeches).
Tell us about your outfit, and where you bought it.
My dress was Anushka by Augusta Jones and I absolutely adored it. I bought it from A Bride-2-Bee in Warsash near Southampton.
Did you have bridesmaids? If so, who did you choose and what did they wear?
We had two adult bridesmaids who wore dresses from Coast in lavender with lilac sash and diamante brooch. They found them completely by accident but they were just perfect.
Who did your groom choose for his best man and ushers, and what did they wear?
The Best Man and Ushers were all Nick’s close friends who he has known since secondary school. They all wore Morning Suits with ivory waistcoats and a lilac cravat and they looked so smart!
Did you have a civil or religious ceremony?
We had a civil ceremony followed immediately by a blessing which was performed by a friend of Nick’s (a vicar) who he played football with for many years.
Where did you hold your ceremony?
In the Barn at Oaks Farm in Shirley which is near Croydon. It is set between two golf courses and has beautiful grounds. The drinks following the ceremony were served in the orangery.
Where did you hold your reception?
The wedding breakfast was in the Pavilion which is a marquee attached to the orangery.
Did you have any special wedding transport?
As I was getting ready at the venue I didn’t have any special transport. I did arrange for a Rolls Royce Silver Spur to collect Nick and the Best Man as a surprise and he loved it.
How many guests did you invite to your wedding, and did you have a separate evening guest list?
We had 65 guests in the end. We didn’t have an evening guest list because I’m from Southampton and Nick is from Upminster so most of our guests had quite a way to travel and it wasn’t fair to invite them just for the evening.
Did your reception have a particular theme in terms of colour or style?
As we got engaged in Rome we thought it would be nice to have that as the theme.
How did you incorporate this in to your table settings?
Our table names were all sights in Rome and our table plan was the hands from the ‘Creation of Man’ from the Sistine Chapel.
Did you give your guests favours?
Yes, we gave them chocolates with personalised wrappers with our names and wedding date on.
Describe your flowers (bouquets and table decorations). Who was your florist?
I had an informal hand-tied bouquet consisting of coolwater roses, dusky pink hydrangeas, purple veronica, lilac sweet peas, and purple lissy. It was tied with lilac ribbon, pinned with pearl headed pins. The bridesmaids had hand-tied bouquets of coolwater roses, purple veronica, and dusky pink hydrangeas. The table centre arrangements were silver coated square glass vases of large white roses, lilac spray roses, purple veronica, purple lissy, lilac scabiosa, and dusky pink hydrangeas. We had the table arrangements in aqua packs so that our guests could take them home. Our flowers were by Stem Florists. Emma was so helpful and patient throughout, she did an amazing job.
What did you choose to have on your menu? Did you have an outside caterer or did your venue handle the catering?
Starter: Tricolore Salad of Vine-Ripened Tomato, Avocado and Mozzarella garnished with Fresh Basil and drizzled with Extra Virgin Olive Oil Main: Chargrilled Breast of Chicken, Marinaded in Coriander, Chillies and Lime served with Seasonal Vegetables and Garlic Roasted New Potatoes Dessert: Individual Apple Pie served with Vanilla Ice Cream and Clotted Cream
What did you choose for your wedding cake, and who made it?
Our wedding cake was made by Debbie Bone of Debbie’s Sweet Art in Walton-on-Thames. It was chocolate cake covered with white chocolate cigarillos and decorated raspberries and strawberries. It all got eaten as our guests loved it!
Did you have any entertainment during the day or evening?
During the ceremonies and until the wedding breakfast we had a string quartet which our guests enjoyed. In the evening we had a DJ and we had given a list of guest requests which he played.
Did you have a gift list? If so, who did you have your list with?
No, we have lived together for several years so we asked for contributions towards our honeymoon. People were very generous.
Where did you spend your first night and honeymoon? Who did you book your honeymoon with?
The first night was spent at the Bridal Cottage at Oaks Farm. Our honeymoon was one week Safari and one week at the beach. We didn’t want to come back.
What was your most memorable moment of the day?
Seeing Nick for the first time, he had the biggest smile on his face.
Did you experience any ‘nightmare’ moments in the run up to your wedding or on the day?
Not really. We live in Copenhagen and organised everything from abroad so we had to be quite organised. The worst part was that Nick’s dad (who lives in Tbilisi) was told that he was medically unfit to fly so
Is there anything you would do differently, or any advice you would give to other brides?
We would probably start the day a bit earlier as we ran a little behind schedule. Other than that everything was perfect so I wouldn’t change a thing.