If Tuesday afternoon has got you wishing that summer wasn’t nearly over then I have...
Happy Monday everyone, I hope you all had a great weekend? What did you get up to? Mine was nice and chilled. It’s Dexter’s 6th birthday this Friday, and we are spreading it across 3 days, so it was nice to have this weekend as a relaxed one as next week it’s going to be busy with friends and family visiting and a mini party for him. It’s his first day back at school today, we have all been in the house together every day for the past 12 weeks and today is the first day apart. So I’l update you tomorrow on how it went. On with today’s wedding and it’s the turn of Eva and George, who were married in the greenhouse of RHS Wisley Gardens in Surrey. The whole day is elegant, stylish and filled with love and the most gorgeous sunshine, all captured beautifully by Murray Clarke Photography
Eva and George were married on 7th July, the ceremony was held at St Laurence, Seale, with the reception at RHS Wisley Gardens in Surrey. ‘We were looking up unusual wedding venues in the UK and came across an ad for Wisley. We both grew up locally to Wisley, and our families had been members so we’d gone for walks throughout the years with them. We later found a picture of George in a push chair from one of those walks, which we displayed at the wedding. Looking into this venue more we realised they only take on about 10 weddings a year, between May & September, so that made it feel even more special. We had 139 guests. The engagement was Christmas Eve 2016, we booked the venue the following month, and the wedding was July 2018.’
How they met
We met at our local yoga studio, Red Hot Yoga in Guildford! I (Eva!) was working at the studio and George came in for a class. After a few months we got talking more and he asked me out for a date – we both had burgers at a local pub, and George was disappointed I finished my meal with none to spare for him! We’ve been together since May 2012.
Christmas is my (Eva) favourite time of year, and we both love spending part of this holiday in Norway with family and friends. So George got an engagement ring made that he designed – inspired by Viking carvings, lotus leaves (as we met at the yoga studio), an aquamarine stone (as I preferred coloured stones instead of diamonds!) and engraved on the inside. It was a gorgeous snowy morning on Christmas Eve and George told me he brought my gift to Norway, then went down on one knee and displayed the ring in a ring box he had carved. We then went downstairs to join our friends for breakfast and champagne!
How did you allocate your budget?
I work as a Production Buyer for the set designing department in the film industry, and my main job there is to manage the budget for various sets. So I already had a number pop into my head of how much it would be, but then discussed what we could afford and also how much we wanted to spend. We worked together on what we thought would be worth spending money on and what we could afford to give up in order to have space for the guests we wanted there, and also not bankrupt ourselves!
Where did you splurge and where did you save?
Splurge – the wedding dress, the venue, the photographer (although that wasn’t a ‘splurge’ but something we didn’t want to go for the cheapest option on). The wedding lasts a day, the pictures last a lifetime! The band as well. Luckily we saved with decorations as we made a few ourselves and knew where to get them cheaper, as well as some suppliers I work with generously contributing towards the day with things.
How did you choose your photographer?
Both of us think the other person found Murray! So I’m afraid we don’t remember exactly, but we recall seeing his website and thinking the pictures were amazing without looking staged. Neither of us wanted the wedding to be a photoshoot, we wanted to spend time with the guests and have the pictures reflect the true emotions and setting. After speaking to Murray on the phone we knew he was the man for the job!
My wedding dress was found one week after getting engaged! We went to Chicago to visit my sister a couple days after Christmas. As my maid of honour she was afraid of missing out on her duties (!) so booked us an appointment with an independent company called Bella Bianca. The first dress I tried on, by Anne Barge, was ‘the one’! My shoes were some white wedges I already owned (my dress was so big you couldn’t see them), my veil was lent to me by one of my bridesmaids, my earrings were lent to me by a friend who couldn’t make it to the wedding, and my bracelet belonged to George’s mother.
The suit and bridesmaids
The suit was from Hugo Boss, and he looked very dashing in it. I had 9 bridesmaids…! So as they were all different shapes and sizes and all over world. I told them to all pick a different colour and then find a dress which had to be chiffon, floor length and in a pastel colour of their choice. My sister wore a gold dress to match the gold lace in my dress. I gave them all a budget and let them chose a dress they liked and will hopefully want to wear again. The girls also wore flower crowns that matched their bouquets
Theme or colour scheme
No colour scheme really – as there are so many gorgeous flowers in various colours at Wisley we didn’t feel like we should pick one
All the bridesmaids had white flowers (to match the wedding dress) with foliage, and then the bridal bouquet was filled with flowers in all the colours of the bridesmaids’ dresses. The flowers in the church were various colours as well. Once we got to the reception we had 9 vases out on plinths that all the girls could put their flowers in, so they didn’t have to be carried all day and night or get abandoned, and instead could help to decorate the loggia.
The church just had the flowers, but there were a lot of them! In the loggia (where we had drinks, snacks, ice cream) we had a banner that was supposed to say ‘welcome to the wedding of Mr & Mrs Lansdowne’, but it was too long so we missed out the first 3 words! The wooden beams in there were wrapped with hops and white flowers (fake from Country Baskets, but you couldn’t tell from a distance!). We also had the bridesmaid flowers in vases on plinths. In the greenhouse the tables were decorated with gold damask tablecloths, candelabra, flowers along the bases of these, and then we had pictures of us two, our friends and family hung up all over the walls.
In the loggia for the reception we had platters of food from M&S – assorted sandwiches and finger food. For the wedding breakfast in the glasshouse our caterers were Smokey Mac. They provided each table with platters of pulled pork, beef brisket and chicken wings. Sides included bread, mac and cheese, and coleslaw.
The wedding cake
We chose to not have one, and instead one of the bridesmaids made about 300 brownies! Salted caramel, raspberry, peanut butter and regular. They were the highlight of a lot of people’s day!!
One of the ushers played guitar and sang while we were in the loggia, and we had an incredible band with light up instruments play in the evening, as well as a DJ.
Who supplied the stationery?
Lewis & Kaye, Complete Bliss, Bentley Brown, Confetti
Where did you go on your honeymoon?
On the night of the wedding we stayed at Broadway Barn in Ripley, we then did a mini moon a couple days after the wedding for 3 days, at a little tree house in Sussex which was wonderful. Our proper trip was to Japan for 3 weeks in November 2019, travelling around various cities
We made the wedding invites, the order of service for the church, the name cards on the tables. We had a lot of pictures all over the venue of us two, our friends and our families – that was fun to collate and get made up. We then put them all up on strings with pegs.
In the loggia we had paper napkins printed with our names and the wedding date for the finger food. In the glasshouse we had sweet jars and so provided paper bags with our names and the date as well to put them into. We also got the tablecloths made by a friend, and the spare gold damask fabric ended up on one of the sets for the film Rocketman! (The drapes in front of the doors in the pub where they start singing ‘Saturday night’s alright for fighting!’)
The speeches – all of them were fantastic, funny and sentimental.
Walking down the aisle and seeing each other for the first time.
First dance, and father and daughter dance.
Putting on the wedding dress and realising it fit!
Having our pictures taken later on in the evening, a chance to walk around the gardens just us two and have some time together (and with Murray our photographer!).
Advice for other couples?
Enjoy every moment and try to spend as much time with your husband/wife as possible, it’s easy to get distracted by all the guests who want to see you and have their picture taken with you!
Don’t worry if the small details don’t go to plan, no one else will notice them and you will still have the most amazing day
Spend money on the things that truly matter and will enhance your day
Expensive doesn’t mean better – we paid £16 per head for our food and got rave reviews!
That nothing went wrong! You put so much pressure on it being the perfect day and all of the important things came together perfectly
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