Rachel and Ryan’s ‘Sunflowers and Beat Boxers’ Fun Filled Tipi Wedding in Hertfordshire by Nicki Shea Photography
Today I am taking you to Hertfordshire for a gorgeous wedding that happened last summer. Rachel...
This week we are taking you all across the world. Yesterday we traveled to New York City for the wedding of Eszter and Michael, today we head to Ticehurst for this beautiful East Sussex Wedding, courtesy of Joe Kingston.Tory and Michael chose The bell, as it gave them the eclectic look they were looking for, mixed with an elegant neutral touch. They opted for minimal decor as the venue had so much charm and personality, instead they concentrated on making sure their guests were served delicious food and kept watered all night long. A gorgeous wedding for this lovely Tuesday.
Tory and Michael were married on the 14th April 2017 The Bell in Ticehurst, East Sussex. ‘We loved the unique style of The Bell and felt the vintage upstairs ballroom and eclectic décor, which mixed vintage and industrial elements, embodied a style that we really love. Also, the lodges out back (especially the “Love Nest”) were so amazing that they confirmed what I think we already knew by that point – this is the only place we want to get married. That we could get married and have our reception in one place, with catering covered, was a huge factor too. We had 70 guests for the day rising to 100 for the evening, and the wedding took 5 months to plan.’
How they met
We met for the first time through a mutual friend at a nightclub over 10 years ago and have now been together for 8 years.
I surprised Tory when she got home from work by lighting candles and putting up photos around the house of us together from all the different places we’ve visited. I’d also written her a letter and left it on the stairs. Then I hid in a little homemade tipi upstairs with the ring and waited for her to find me. I know, unbelievably cheesy…
How did you allocate your budget?
Pretty early on we set out a list of things we needed and then organised them in order of importance and also roughly in order of things we didn’t mind spending a bit extra on.
Where did you splurge and where/how did you save?
One of the main things that we wanted to ensure was that we were both comfortable and relaxed on the day, so we allowed ourselves a pretty loose budget when it came to wedding outfits. Secondly it was really important to us that our guests also felt relaxed and comfortable, so we made sure there was plenty of food and drink around.
We managed to save a reasonable amount by getting crafty and making many of the small touches ourselves; this included the table plan, place cards, homemade photo-booth backdrop etc.
Why did you choose your photographer?
We knew Joe through mutual friends and had seen some of his work online, which we really liked. We wanted a more natural/documentary style to our photos and that’s exactly what Joe does, so it was an easy decision for us. Neither of us particularly relish being in front of the camera so the fact that Joe is so easy going made the whole process so much more comfortable. Also, Joe is basically a Photography Ninja so half the time we didn’t even notice him.
Dress: Clarissa by Eliza Jane Howell from White Mischief in Henfield. I visited a few bridal shops and tried on lots of dresses. The dresses were all beautiful but I just didn’t feel myself in them until I tried on this beautiful beaded EJH number. Originally I didn’t want to try it on as I thought it would be out of budget, but thankfully it wasn’t!
Shoes: New Look (my something old! I wore these on my Hen Do in Dublin.)
Accessories: Tiffany Bangle and aquamarine earrings- my something blue
The Suit and Bridesmaids
Suit: Trousers and Waistcoat – Topman, Jacket – Harris Tweed from Next, Tie & Shirt – TM Lewin
Shoes – “Ask the Missus” from office.co.uk
Bridesmaids: All dresses from ASOS, Mix of Maya and ASOS own brand.
Theme or Colour Scheme
As the venue has quite a busy décor we wanted to keep the colours simple and relatively neutral – greys, whites, greens etc.
White flowers, lots of eucalyptus leaves and greenery including gypsyfilia for the bride and bridesmaids’ hair. We gave Alison at “The Art Bunch” (a local florist in Ticehurst) a basic description of what we wanted, which she then elaborated on and fulfilled. Tory’s bouquet was a mixture of white flowers and lots of greenery. The bridesmaids each had a small bunch of gypsyfilia and all bouquets were hand tied with long ribbons, which looked beautiful in the photos.
Again, as the venue itself is quite busy already in terms of décor, we kept things quite simple and just hung some family photos on the indoor tree which leads up to the ballroom.
We had a selection of canapés arranged for after the ceremony – which we can’t remember because we didn’t get to try any of them as we were too busy catching up with people!
For the wedding breakfast, we had a honeyed goats cheese tart for starter, roast striploin of beef with boulangere potatoes and celeriac puree for main, and lemon posset for dessert.
For the evening guests we had fish finger sandwiches, bacon butties, and triple cooked chips.
We also had marshmallows for toasting on the fire pit, which went down a treat!
We decided to go for a cheese cake (literally a cake made of cheese), from a local dairy. It consisted of three large wheels of cheese – Cheddar, Smoked, Herb, and a soft cheese called Bellwash Rose. Tory’s sister also made us a three tiered Victoria Sponge with fresh cream and berries – which was incredible!
We had a DJ from 7pm as well as sparklers and marshmallows for roasting on the fire pit outside.
Who supplied the stationery?
We used Vistaprint for the invites and RSVP cards. We found that they had an excellent selection and everything arrived so quickly. We bought luggage tags for the place cards from Hobbycraft. Everyone at the venue the night before the wedding was set to work threading the luggage tags with fresh rosemary- they smelt amazing! Our friend Sarah hand wrote names on the place cards and the table plan.
We hung photos of our grandparents and parents on their wedding days on the tree leading up to the ballroom. We also included a load of pictures of us as kids, as well as loved ones who are no longer with us.
Special Moments or Highlights
Aside from the actual ceremony itself, the speeches were well received and getting everyone on the dancefloor made for an amazing party.
Advice for Other Couples
Don’t sweat the small stuff.
Just how much fun we had! Of course we were hoping for it to be a good day but I don’t think either of us realised how much fun it would actually be, and that all the stress and anxiety that comes with organising such a big day would be so completely worth it. It was the best party!