Sarah and Lawrence’s Laid Back Handmade Tipi Wedding in North Yorkshire by Alfred and Co Photography
If you remember back to last June, we had a mini heat wave. I remember...
We started off our year of real weddings yesterday with the beautiful wedding of Kirsty and Brent. We follow that with an equally gorgeous wedding. This time a fun-filled, festival themed wedding in Northern Ireland. As both David and Lauren are super creative, they wanted their wedding to be as DIY as possible. They did a lot of it themselves, including the signage, table decorations and seating cards. They also embraced the talents of their friends and family. From the homemade wedding cake to home-grown flowers, this wedding is a DIY extravaganza! Full of muted tones and so many quirky editions, it really is a fab wedding to start the year. Big thanks to Christin White Photography for the gorgeous images.
David and Lauren were married on 1st September 1st 2017 at Field of Dreams, Bangor, Northern Ireland. ‘We’re not traditional people and wanted to take a much more laid back approach to our venue. We loved the open space and natural surroundings of Field of Dreams and it gave off distinctive organic vibes. The entire venue was beautiful, from the picturesque cabin to the quint lake, there were many fab hidden features and it suited our chilled out, natural style perfectly! We had 75 guest for the ceremony and around 110 for the evening celebrations, it took around a year to plan’
How they met
We met at college, Lauren was studying art and David was studying music. It must have been our creative personalities that attracted us to each other because after a lot of flirting and eye batting we started dating in December 2010 and have been together ever since!
Very chilled! We’d talked briefly about what we’d want in a proposal throughout the years (mainly after watching corny reality shows) and had both somewhat decided that over the top proposals were not us. We actually went bowling afterwards David kept insisting on walking over the Lagan Bridge in Belfast, it was absolutely freezing so Lauren took a little persuading and that’s where it happened! Poor David was clearly a bit nervous because he put the ring on the wrong finger but we laughed then and still laugh about it now. One of our favourite stories! Very us!
How did allocate your budget?
We’d had a tough couple years leading up to our wedding. Lauren was still in Art School studying and David had had an accident on a motorbike, resulting in a broken neck! So our budget wasn’t a huge amount and we worked our butts off to save up, teamwork was key! We made sure we didn’t skimp on things that meant the most to us so we wrote down a budget for everything we needed and worked off that.
Where did you splurge and where did you save?
We did a lot of DIY to save money (which suited us perfectly). We had a fantastic friend help us with our flowers, which we hand-picked from another friends garden. A fab personal touch we thought! David’s family were sewing bunting until their fingers bled and Laurens Mum, a fab baker, made the wedding cake that would give Mr Kipling a run for his money! It really is all about who you know and our family and friends all pulled together to help us with our DIY’s. We splurged mostly on food and alcohol. The venue wasn’t licensed so we weren’t permitted to sell alcohol on the premises. We wanted everyone to have whatever they wanted so we bought all of the drinks throughout the year and then gave it away on the day. Even though we’d got half off, another splurge was definitely the wedding dress (Thanks Mum!)
Why did you choose your photographer?
Christin!! She was our lady knight in shining armour! Lauren volunteers in a Gallery and it was the owner who had suggested talking to Christin and thank goodness she had! We went to meet Christin and immediately hit it off. We all chatted for hours and she made us feel completely at ease, it was like we were old pals. We’re both pretty awkward people and Christin made us feel comfortable as soon as we’d met her. Not forgetting Mr Beardy, Christin’s second shooter and fiancé! He was also fantastic throughout the day.
My Dress was by Rue De Seine (swoon). My shoes, whenever I wasn’t barefoot, were Dorothy Perkins! My accessories were all my mums own beautiful jewellery!
The suit and bridesmaids
Davids snazzy suit was a Cavani. We’d hired the groomsmen’s suits, then we’d gotten samples from Cavani to make their bow ties and pocket napkins. The bridesmaid dresses were from House of Fraser.
Theme or colour scheme
We had always planned a lot of lovely organic colours such as greens etc. But our wedding ended up being an explosion of different colours. It worked though! We definitely had a bit of a ‘Wedstock’ theme going on, a lot of festival and groovy vibes. We also had to sneak books in there somewhere as both of us are big readers.
A complete mixture, compliments of my mums friends back garden. She has the most stunning garden we’d ever seen and let us loose with a set of secateurs. David’s mum also has a very impressive hydrangea hedge and we hacked most of that up as well! Overall we had a beautiful assortment of wildflowers, greenery, sunflowers and even had branches we’d taken off crab apple tree. Bliss!
Books mostly! Although we had a lot of our own personal touches in here and there as well. Flowers displayed in big, vintage milk churns which we’d borrowed off some farmer friends of the family (we’d also borrowed some fab hay bales from these lovely folk). We’d also essentially emptied our home into the venue. It had lots of Polaroid’s, frames, fairy lights, books and trinkets that meant a lot to us.
We are both massive foodies so food was very important to us. Antipasta for our starter. I think that was perhaps our most favourite thing ever. Lots of breads, meats, cheeses, olives and delicious things! We wanted something different and that is our most favourite kind of food. For our main we had a buffet style set up so people could eat whatever they wanted. Lamb, pork, vegetarian ravioli for Lauren, Mediterranean style vegetables and dauphinoise potatoes. Afterwards we had a little trio selection of desserts and best of all, cheese and crackers, yum!
Our cake was homemade by Laurens fantastic and wonderful Mum, Janice. She is an incredible baker and we didn’t even consider using anyone else for our cake. Victoria Sponge with Jam and plain vanilla icing. It was heavenly. We also had an impressive tier cake of cheese which we’d got from Marks and Spencer! This was a bit of a splurge but we’d highly recommend it if you’re lovers of cheese, like we are. We were also eating cheese for days afterwards which was fine by us!
We had a great little band called Klass. They played classics, had everyone up dancing from the very first song and we boogied away until the wee hours of the morning.
Who supplied the stationery?
We’d gotten advice from a friend of the family’s about making our invitations. We’d actually made them all ourselves with well sourced materials offline, a trusty typewrite and a lot of patience.
Doing a lot of things ourselves of course saved money but we believe we’d have done everything the exact same way even if we’d been millionaires! We did a great deal ourselves and we had both worked really hard to make sure our day was filled with personal touches. Lauren is an artist and a lot of her creativeness was evident throughout the day. Our wedding was full of our own individual touches, such as our home made signs, table decorations and even seating cards, the whole day was us all over!
For me (Lauren), walking up the isle was definitely special. I had chosen to walk up to Cosmic Dancer by T-Rex. I could not have picked a better song and it was just magical to see all the faces of everyone I love with the sound of the lovely Marc Bolan! We’d chosen contemporary vows to say to each other, which were beautiful! We’d been a bit teary saying them on our rehearsals the night before and saying them on our wedding day was very special to us!
Advice for other couples
Please, please, please do not think that weddings have to be a certain way! The most frustrating thing about planning our wedding was other people telling us that we couldn’t do different things because it wasn’t very ‘weddingy like’. Well, why not!? It’s YOUR wedding so do whatever the heck you guys want! Don’t lose yourselves along the way and remember the person you’re with, you’re a team! Don’t fret over every little detail, we know it seems important now but we promise, whenever you’re surrounded by the people you love none of that matters.
Just how wonderful everything was and how everyone reacted to our wedding! I think it was very different from what people had ever experienced and we got fab feedback, even from the oldies! This was definitely a surprise.
I’m based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. My style of photography sits in a little pocket between Fine Art and documentary. Its honest, authentic and fun with a deep focus on colour and composition. I always like to get a little creative when capturing images so you might find me holding random objects in front of my lens… trust me there is method to the madness!