Today I am taking you off to beautiful Austria for the gorgeous wedding of Melanie...
You join us today for this totally gorgeous woodland themed autumn wedding, filled with deep colours and warm tones. Selina and Vincent LOVE autumn, so it seemed only natural for them to get married in their favourite season. With this they were able to incorporate their love of nature with a woodland wedding theme, and they really did bring the outside in. With Selina’s arts and crafts background, the whole wedding was a wonderful homespun affair, with so many super cute details and home-made decorations. I just love the rustic table decorations, and the foxes on top of the wedding cake. Andy Gaines has captured the day perfectly, he even had a short stint playing with the band later on in the reception, a man of many talents.
Selina and Vincent were married on the 22nd October 2016 in a ceremony at Pocklington Registry Office followed by a reception at Barmby Field Barns, Barmby Moor, York. ‘It was the second place that we looked at, and we knew instantly that was our place. It was in an old barn which has over time been adapted to accommodate weddings and parties… This was perfect, a blank canvas which is exactly what we wanted. Everything was DIY and in our control to choose our food, our caterers and our decoration. It’s only down the road from where I grew up and where most of our friends live, which was handy for our guests to travel. We had about 60 guests for our daytime event and an added 20-30 guests came to the evening do. The wedding took 1 year to plan.’
How they met
We have been together 6 years. We knew each other for a while before getting together. We met going to music gigs and mixing in the same circles of friends. Lets say musical tastes brought us together.
Vin had been working over in the US for two weeks. It had been the longest we’d been apart since being together, and we’d been discussing engagement before he went but nothing was set in stone. When he returned it was the week of my birthday and he presented me with a lovely opal necklace (my birthstone). Vin isn’t great at keeping secrets when he is excited which is why I got my birthday present too early, but after opening it he told me there was another gift under my pillow… sure enough it was my engagement ring. A natural sapphire sat between two diamonds. All the way from Utah.
How did you allocate your budget?
We had a very small budget. We are lucky to have some amazingly talented friends, one being an award winning photographer and the others being talented musicians this meant photography and music were our gifts from them. The majority of the budget went on the ceremony, the barns, the food and the drink. Vin’s outfit ended up costing more than mine!
Where did you splurge and where did you save?
We saved a lot on my dress as my mum very kindly made it for me and we bought the bridesmaids dresses online, which meant Vin could splurge on the tweed suit he always wanted! Vin is from South Africa originally but loves the history and heritage of the UK. We didn’t splurge a great deal but we did choose some nice bottles of wine and dessert wines for the tables.
How did you choose your photographer?
Andy Gaines, with the help of Esme Mai, photographed our wedding, they are really amazing at what they do. I knew Andy from when he used to play in bands and we have been good friends ever since. He is such an amazing photographer who really captures who people are. It’s been wonderful seeing our photographs and reminiscing and laughing at parts of the day you forget in the midst of the mayhem. Your wedding day can be quite overwhelming at times, and it goes by in a flash, so the value of photography and the right photographer is so important. its so important to have the right person documenting it. Andy and Esme have been good friends for many years so it was really special for us to have them involved in such a way.
I wanted a 1950’s vintage style dress in emerald green, and so the only way the get that was to make it. My mum used to make her own clothes and so I passed that job onto her, and she did an awesome job too. My shoes were humbly from M&S and my accessories were simple, two silver bangles that I have had for years, both bought as gifts from family and an opal and white sapphire ring which I bought from an antiques shop in Whitby on my hen weekend as a souvenir.
The Suit and Bridesmaids
We bought the bridesmaids dresses online in a similar style to my dress but in wine red and the full underskirts we all had were so much fun to wear. Vin wore a Harris Tweed suit, a country checked shirt and some lovely brown brogue boots. Suited and booted to the max!
Theme or Colour Scheme
Our theme was our favourite time of year…. Autumn. Our October wedding date was slap bang in between our birthdays. The colours were rich and warming, oranges, browns, dark greens, purples, dark reds and bronze. Nature was a heavy inspiration with woodland animals and bird names for tables, and table decorations that included teasels, pine cones, conkers, leaves, Ivy, pumpkins and other squashes.
A local lady grows seasonal flowers in fields in the York area. She delivered 3 buckets of a selection of seasonal flowers to our venue the day before and myself and sister in-law arranged them in various bottles and vessels. A lot of wild meadow flowers and foliage was involved, as well as dried teasles and such which we had collected off country road sides. We decorated the barns and tables with Ivy from our garden also.
My passion and career is art and design, it’s what I love and what drives me. I loved having free reign of the barn to decorate as I wished. The decorations were largely natural and gathered in the weeks leading to the wedding from woodlands such as, pine cones, leaf veins, acorns, and conkers. We bought bell jars and filled them with the cones and made tea light holders with logs of wood. I was going for a ‘overgrown old Victorian house’ style for the tables, with piled old books and silver candelabras entwined with ivy. We made 4 huge wreaths which hung from the ceiling using hula hoops and much foliage!!
We ate Pie! Game Pie, Chicken and bacon pie and vegetable pie. It was all laid out in a kind of buffet arrangement where everyone went up and chose which they wanted. For desert we shared out the beautiful ‘Naked Cake’ and had cheese and biscuit platters. In the evening we had Pumpkin soup and crusty rolls.
A local lady in Malton made us a lovely 4 tier cake. Fruit cake being the bottom layer, then chocolate, lemon and the top being apple and cinnamon. We wanted it decorated with flowers and berries and two little foxes on the top (which matched the two foxes on our wedding invitation)
In the day we had an uncle doing some awe inspiring balloon modelling. We also had some large garden games. In the evening we had some live music. Some of our friends who were in bands formed a ‘super band’ for the drummers wedding a few years ago and regularly play in this form. They are called ‘Jonny and the Dunebugs‘ and they play 60’s and 70’s music classics they were perfect for the job. The look awesome and sound awesome! Plus they were all guests to the wedding with their families. We just loved having so many of our friends being involved in the day.
After the band we had friend and Fuzz Club DJ, Miss Fuzz aka Abigail Gaines (Andy’s wife) play her amazing mix of 60s northern and latin soul, boogaloo, garage and psych.
I’m an artist and designer so naturally I made my own! The invitation set the scene for the wedding décor
We did everything ourselves. We had the Thursday and Friday beforehand to decorate and set everything up, we had some good friends who helped.
Special Moments or Highlights
Highlights of the day included our photographer, Andy Gaines, getting up onstage and playing with the band and the awesome dancing of our friends. However, the most important has to be seeing Vin’s family together. They flew in from South Africa and I’d never met them in person up until two days before the wedding and Vin hadn’t seen them all for 4 years. Seeing Vin reunited with his family and his best friends after a number of years was mind blowing, it really made our day complete.
Advice for Other Couples
Keep organised. DIY weddings are a lot of work and can be very stressful. Book the important stuff well in advance to avoid disappointment (like photography, this really is the most important thing as when the day is over, it’s these memories created that keep it alive), and budget well.
Spread the cost of a period of time makes things easier to handle.
Don’t stress on the day – go with the flow. It’s all supposed to be fun, stuff goes wrong but its all meant for a reason, plus it makes awesome pictures…. you’re going to have the best day of your life no matter what.
On the day itself, make sure you eat or tell your bridal party to make sure you eat. Don’t miss out on the cake. Don’t feel like you have to talk to everyone people don’t expect it, relax and take it all in as the day goes by in a flash.
Was being made to have a first dance… we tried to escape the embarrassment of the First Dance… but some sneaky folks arranged it and the band called us to the dance floor…. advice to future brides and grooms…. practice a first dance just in case!
Andy is an award-winning creative wedding photographer, based in York but shooting across the world. A key focus on storytelling and natural photography. Andy sees wedding photography about more than just the day itself, it’s about documenting who couples are, their relationships and how it felt. He wants couples to have pictures that are as awesome and unique as they are. Andy makes wedding photography with ‘less cheese and more awesome’!