Today on Ask The Experts, we are looking at a subject we haven’t covered before...
Today I am taking you to Cornwall, the place I was brought up. Cornwall will always have a huge place in my heart as I lived there for 18 years from Childhood until I started University. For that reason, I LOVE receiving weddings from this part of the country. Becca and Mike’s wedding is a great example of a stunning Cornish wedding that is both DIY, luxe and stylish. Both Becca and Mike have super talented friends and family, so they had lots of help with things like the flowers, decor and the cake. I just love the way it has all come together. The geometric patterns and shapes are gorgeous and the modern colour scheme of white, gold and green work perfectly with the geometric theme. Big thanks to Alexa Poppe for the lovely images.
Becca and Mike were married on 28th July 2018 at The Green in Cornwall. ‘We looked at several places closer to home (in Plymouth) but when we went to The Green we knew this was the place. With all the different buildings we didn’t have to worry about weather. The wedding barn was full of character, which meant a lot to us and we love to be surrounded by the moors. We had 80 guests and it took just over a year to plan The bridesmaids’ dresses were the first things I bought back in June!’
How they met
Despite going to the same primary and secondary school, but two years apart, we didn’t meet properly until years after. Mike was living in London and I went up with friends of mine for a New Year’s Eve party which was where it all started. I moved up to London the next year, and three years after that we moved back home to Devon together.
We went on holiday to Lake Garda for my birthday. On my birthday itself we caught the cable car up the mountain overlooking the lake and went hiking. When we stopped for lunch, Mike proposed and even had carried a mini bottle of prosecco in his bag ready!
How did you allocate your budget?
We’re both spreadsheet people (a maths teacher and a project manager..) and I found a great sample one online which we adapted so this really helped us keep track along the way. We used this to give us an idea of costs, then thought about the bits that we really wanted to have and bits we were less worried about.
Where did you splurge and where did you save?
We were so lucky to have some amazingly talented family to help- so the flowers were all done by my family and as was the cake. Mike’s suit came into the sale. My shoes were on sale and I got a hair piece of ebay. The Green’s price included the band so we thought that was a great deal.
Hair and makeup for the bridal party was a splurge, but definitely worth it for the ease on the morning! My dress was a splurge (but my Mum paid for that one..). To be honest the biggest spend was the honeymoon!
How did you choose your photographer?
We wanted natural shots, with lots of greenery as we liked being outside. After a lot of looking we checked with The Green’s recommended list and Alexa came up – her pictures were exactly what I had been looking for.
By dress was Martina Liana and I bought it from Sam Cox on the Barbican in Plymouth- going there was one of the best experiences- the smell of Jo Malone candles, great décor and just us with some gorgeous dresses. My hair piece was second hand from ebay and the shoes were Benjamin Adams (in the sale), although I did swap into a pair of Dune wedges for ‘sensible shoes’ for our shots out in the woods!
The suit and bridesmaids
The suit was from Reiss. The bridesmaids dresses were coast – I loved the dark green.
Theme or colour scheme
Whites, greens and gold. I wanted something quite classic, teamed with geometric styles.
White flowers- Peonies, roses, lisianthus, then teamed with greenery. My parents cut down a lot of branches from the eucalyptus tree and other bushes that would give a range of textures and colours. I also loved the white snow berries and the thistles we had.
Flowers made up the main decoration but we had geometric lights and bowls, hanging terrariums, hurricanae vases with lights in. The table decorations were a mix of lower ones- made of geometric bowls (which were originally fruit bowls) and taller stands so people could see through them to still chat.
We decided to do sharing platters on the tables, so everyone got to have a bit of everything! The food at The Green was amazing.
For starter we had a Mezze – Antipasti of cured meats, parmesan shavings, roasted veg crostinis, smoked fish, olives, ripped mozzarella in chilli oil, marinated tomatoes, crusty bread, oil and vinegar.
For the main we had Roast chicken in harissa and pomegranate rub with a yoghurt tahini sauce. Melt in the mouth lamb leg. With new potatoes, cous cous and vegetables.
The desserts were all three of -Smashed meringue, seasonal macerated berries, vanilla cream. Chocca mocha torte, boozy Cornish clotted cream. St Clements posset, orange basil shortbread.
The evening food was fish and chips- they were massive portions and went down a storm!
The wedding cake
The wedding cake was a fake layer to give it extra height, a rich chocolate layer, vanilla, and fruit cake. We had a carrot cake on the side too. My Mum’s friend at work made the cakes. I designed what I wanted and my cousin decorated it exactly as I had imagined!
We had music in the day – Flossi Buckle. Who everyone said was incredibly talented. In the evening we had Kaj who was excellent for getting everyone on the dance floor – Kaj was recommeneded by The Green and having never seen him live we watched some videos and decided he was good fun and would be great for the evening. For those who didn’t want to dance we got some casino tables in –which were a massive hit as well. We did a bottle of wine for the one with the most chips by the end!
Who supplied the stationery?
We got the invites from Australia, I found them on Etsy and asked her to slightly change the design to have a few more white flowers in keeping with what we were having.
I painted and did the calligraphy on the name tiles myself.
Myself and my bridemaid did the signs on the mirrors.
I had made the hanging table plan using a similar design to our invites and gold wire to hang them from a frame.
A lot of the day were things we had done ourselves. From all the flowers, the cakes, the decoration even down to the hundreds of pom poms we threw instead of confetti! It was great to have are family and friends help out to make our day so amazing. The golden horse shoe I held was one my parents had kept from my first pony 20 years ago.
Instead of a guest book we had thumb prints- we found someone on Esty who did illustrations of us both from pictures we sent her of us what we would be wearing on the day, the flowers and photos of us together to get the height correct. I was so impressed and it’s a lovely piece of art to have on our wall.
The ceremony! The place was beautiful and we had little extras on the vows to make it our own. We went back down the aisle together to Drake- ‘Best I ever had’, not your usual wedding track but it just what we wanted.
We used pompoms for confetti- we hid from the rain in the rustic barn. Everyone loved throwing the pompoms.
The bouquet toss- my friends are always up for a giggle, and a little competitive.
Advice for other couples
Find somewhere, where it doesn’t matter what the weather does!
Doing a bride’s speech was the best thing I’ve done. I’m not great at public speaking but being able to thank those people who played a massive part in the day myself meant a lot to me. Go for it!
One of my good friends couldn’t make it to the day as she is a wedding photographer and was already booked for the whole day and evening. The bride at the wedding she was at decided to bring their first dance forward and she was able to finish earlier than expected. She raced to pick up her husband and come all the way down to Cornwall and made it to the evening! They were the reason Mike and I met, so having them their meant a lot!
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