Hannah and Patrick’s ‘Rustic Charm’ DIY Kent Wedding by Michelle Cordner Photography

Today’s wedding is real family affair where everyone pulled together to make the wedding super personal and full of character. Hannah and Patrick wanted a weekend where as many guests could stay on site as possible, so this was top of their list when looking for a venue. With many of their guests staying for the whole weekend it made the wedding even more relaxed and chilled, which in turn made the day flow effortlessly. With so many super cute handmade additions to the wedding, and so many people helping it all pull together Hannah and Patrick really did create a ‘Rustic Charm‘ of a wedding day. Big thanks to Michelle Cordner Photography for the fab photograph.

Relaxed, minimalistic with rustic charm and picturesque views. An amazingly special and memorable weekend with opportunity to spend time with those who we cherish most.

Hannah and Patrick were married on 25th September 2021 at The Ferry House Inn in Kent. ‘Hannah is originally from Rochester in Kent, so we explored venues around Kent as one of our options. We really wanted a venue that could host many of our guests to stay for the weekend, as we currently live in Cambridgeshire and Patrick’s family live in the midlands. We knew wherever we went, people would need to travel some distance, so this was a big priority for us.
We found the Ferry House inn through a Google search for venues with accommodation. As we were in lockdown whilst planning, we found they had a very good online video walk through of the venue and its surrounding area and it just felt like it was made for us. We provisionally booked our date, then visited when we were able to and we were so pleased with our choice. We had 82 day guests, 110 including the evening. We got engaged in April 2020 and basically started planning straight away. It took roughly 17 months to plan.’

How they met 
We’ve been together since 2013. We met each other whilst we were on a work placement at Nestlé in York. Our first interaction, we were both in factory, wearing PPE, steel toe cap boots and hairnets whilst KitKats were being made below us.

The proposal
I visited Hannah’s parents in winter of 2019, under the guise of me having a work trip in Kent. I asked for their blessing and had planned to propose on a holiday to Japan we had planned for Spring 2020. Of course, that ultimately got cancelled, so I found it hard to find the right time and a special moment when the country was in full lockdown. In the end, I decided to just propose on nice day. Thankfully, in the beginnings of April we were having some really hot weather and I decided “today is the day”.
We went for a bike ride in the sun and planned an evening BBQ in our garden and struggled to find the perfect moment in the day. The proposal ultimately ended up being in the kitchen, whilst Hannah was making a cup of tea in the evening, which I think helped contribute to shock reaction.

How did you allocate your budget?
It was really important for us to have the venue we wanted with accommodation for family and we wanted to make a weekend of it. So that really was our top priority. We made compromises elsewhere in the budget to accommodate having a venue that was more expensive but could have lots of people able to stay on site. 

Where did you splurge and where did you save?
The venue was a bit of a splurge and outside of our original allocated budget when we saw the initial quote. However, what seemed like a large fee did include some accommodation, food, drinks on the table and toasting drinks, as well as a helpful planning service and the DJ. What seemed like an early splurge, we think turned out to be the best decision money wise, as well as saving us time enquiring with multiple suppliers because everything was supplied for us!
We saved money a lot on décor just from borrowing from friends who had recent weddings or making things ourselves. The venue we chose already had décor elements included too which really helped with saving.

How did you choose your photographer?
We initially did a search for photographers in Kent that focussed on documentary style photography. We then whittled down to photographers where we both liked the colours and the editing style and we chose Michelle after speaking with her over the phone!

The dress 
My dress was Wtoo by Watters dress, but I purchased from an off the peg bridal store in St Neots at a heavily discounted price (Townhouse bridal – off the peg).
I wore a flower crown, made by our florist. (The flower shop)
I was gifted some earrings by my bridesmaids by Lily Roo
My mum let me borrow her pearl necklace for the day
My shoes were from New Look.

The suit and bridesmaids?
The suit was from Charles Tyrwitt. Bridesmaids dresses were by Jolie Moi

Theme or colour scheme
We both like the colour burgundy and for a September wedding it worked well. We wanted the men’s suits to be a dark Navy blue so we added blush tones to compliment the burgundy and blue. The venue is also a pub with old wooden beams, and decorated with hops. We wanted to carry that theme into our décor so had décor made of natural materials like wood to keep it rustic.

We had a combination of dried and fresh flowers. We wanted there to be the hint of blue in the bouquets and in the button holes so we had blue thistles. Our florist put together bouquets based on some mood boards Hannah had put together, combining lots of textures together, including Dahlias, bunny tails, Eucalyptus and dried Phalaris.

We kept with the rustic theme and kept décor to anything natural materials. We collected glass jars and made candle lanterns with copper wiring. We made our signage out of blocks of wood and borrowed hessian table runners from friends. We also collected amber coloured beer bottles for the guest tables and for some flower stems to sit in which was in-keeping with the pub feel.

We had a hog roast for our wedding breakfast as well as canapes during photos. Then bacon butties and chip cones for evening food.

Wedding cake?
The wedding cake was also supplied by the Ferry House Inn. We decided to go for their deconstructed cake, so 3 separate tiers. All chocolate but with a different flavoured icing; Salted caramel, Chocolate orange, and white chocolate.

We had some lawn games before our wedding breakfast. Our DJ, Karl, was brilliant. He really listened to everything we wanted for the dance floor and he absolutely nailed it.

Who supplied the stationery?
Hannah works in design, so this is again something we did ourselves because we had the right tools to hand. Hannah designed our wedding invitations using adobe software, hand wrote the envelopes in a modern calligraphy style and created the signage on the day on wooden boards.
We also had some help from our friends at Green Wedding Co to create plantable name place cards for our guests, which doubled up as a keepsake for the guests.

Where did you go on your honeymoon?
We went on a mini moon to Cornwall immediately after the wedding for a week. Then in December 2021, we went abroad to Mexico and got ourselves some winter sun before Christmas. We had an amazing time on both trips.

Personal touches
We did a lot ourselves. Wedding stationery and signage was done by Hannah. We had help from Hannah’s family saving glass jars and making candle lanterns. Patrick’s mum made some very cute cake toppers by hand with scrap pieces of materials. Patrick and Patricks family also helped save old beer amber coloured beer bottles for the centre pieces. Patrick also brews beer, so made his very own wedding brew that we could hand out to the guests when we said goodbye in the morning.

Special moments 
We asked the DJ to allocate a small amount of time of his set for some trance music. We thought it would last maybe 20 minutes and was a bit of a risk, but the guests loved it and were asking for more. I came back from the toilet at one point and all the male guests had tied their ties to their heads. We didn’t anticipate how much people were up for a rave!
We also enjoyed the morning before the ceremony. As close friends and relatives were all staying on site, it meant that both our families were able to meet and get to know each other for a few hours before the formal ceremony and the big party later. It made the morning feel quite relaxed.

Advice for other couples?
Get a trusted wedding guest to film the speeches. You won’t remember what people said on the day and they’re good to look back on later in years to come.

What was your biggest surprise of the day?
We really lucked out with the weather. Immediately after the ceremony, the sun came out and it turned the day into gloriously sunny September day which we weren’t expecting. It was an icing on the cake moment because it meant everyone was together and enjoying the outdoor space and the last of the summer sunshine.



Supplier Shout Outs 


For more information on Michelle Cordner Photography 

www.michellecordnerphotography.com www.michellecordnerphotography.com/blog [email protected] / FACEBOOK / INSTAGRAM / PINTEREST 

I am a documentary wedding photographer based in Kent, England. My approach to photography is to create beautiful, natural images, capturing the big things as well as the smallest details that make you and your wedding unique. The connections, the love, the emotions – I try to capture it all! No gimmicky directions or cheesy poses – I strive to create timeless images that you will be proud to display in your home now and for many years to come!



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