WHERE WAS IT?
The venue we chose was Southwood Hall, a 16th century redbrick thatched barn near Acle, Norfolk. When we started looking at venues back in January 2012, we truly did not intend to book right away, however, Southwood changed all this the moment we met Kevin who showed us the beautiful barn. We fell in love with the place and were simply blown away by the standard of the buildings and gardens. It was incredible to be shown around by the man who was instrumental in renovating and developing the dilapidated building into what it
is now. Our wedding coordinator, Eleanor, was perfect in the lead-up to and on the day itself - her fantastic suggestions and attention to detail made our day completely fun and stress-free!
THE THEME / STYLE:
We did not have a set theme as such as we wanted to preserve the natural beauty of the barn itself - it needed little else! We had a deep red set against ivory as our colours.
My dress was a Benjamin Roberts design from La Belle Angele. It was pure silk and simply captured the light at every angle. The large train and intricate yet delicate work on the front were the features that drew me to it. The girls there were great, including Steph who completed the alterations.
These were also from La Belle Angele with the added feature of a silver sixpence superglued to the bottom of my right foot at the last minute by my bridesmaid!
Most of my jewellery was from Swarkowski which Matt introduced me to when he bought me the necklace I wore as a present one year. I also wore my great great grandmother's engagement ring as my "something old".
I have an incredible hairdresser, Lisa Ottolangui, so there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted her there on the morning of the wedding. She was fantastic and created just the look I wanted.
Emily Turnbull from Love Moi Makeup did my make up beautifully and made the morning relaxed and fun! She was professional and just hugely talented in what she does. She even supplied the superglue for the sixpence on my shoe!
My bridesmaid, Rif, chose a simple classic by Dessy, again from La Belle Angele.
After being decidedly underwhelmed with some of the usual high street suppliers a friend recommended John Field Formal Hire in Norwich - a small family run business with some lovely individually tailored suits. Matt wore a traditional morning suit with ivory waistcoat and ivory cravat with the groomsmen in deep red.
We were guided by Southwood with regards to our flowers and were so pleased we were. Rachael Barnard from Acle Country Florist put together some beautiful arrangements that were appreciated by so many people and look exquisite in our photos.
We were extremely lucky to have our cake made for us by a friend of our family, Alison. She and her friend, Paula, put a lot of hard work in and the results were incredible to the extent that we missed out on trying the sponge tiers!
FOOD & DRINKS:
The barn is set next to the family farm and all the produce is locally sourced so we knew the food would be amazing. We opted for a selection of canapes in place of a starter, then a parsnip and thyme soup shot, table-carved roast beef, and a trio of desserts. It's no wonder so many of our guests' photos are food-focused!
We bought deep red favour boxes from The Wedding Party shop, with cream ribbon from Jarrolds, and then set about making our own truffles and fudge! This was great fun and a true way to add a personal touch to the day. Baileys dark chocolate truffles and white chocolate and cranberry fudge were certainly a highlight!
A beautiful 3-week (and Simon-inspired) road trip through California...minus the surfing!
WEDDING SONGS/FIRST DANCE:
We chose Elbow's "One Day Like This" for our first dance, having seen them live at Reading festival two years ago. I walked down the aisle to "Stolen" by Dashboard Confessional and we then walked back to Colbie Caillat's "Feelings Show". These songs will always bring it all back for us now.
A MEMORABLE MOMENT:
Seriously too many to mention and so many moments we are still sharing between ourselves and with friends and family!