Wedding days are notoriously all about you as a couple! But there are ways to...
I have a gorgeous wedding for you today courtesy of Cassandra Lane, a rustic farm wedding which is brimming with creativity! Emma and Gavin have done an amazing job of planning their wedding and pulling together all the DIY projects, I’m sure you will agree the whole day looks amazing. From the seating plan, to the flowers, the pretty flower crowns, the amazing food, the games and those gorgeous light up lights. Emma and Gavin really put their heart and soul into creating the wedding they wanted and were really helped out by their friends and family, I just love everything about it!
Gavin and Emma were married on the 17th of August, at St Lukes Church, Holmes Chapel, followed by a reception at Orchards Farm in Twemlow, Cheshire. ‘We knew from the beginning that we wanted a relaxed and informal wedding, where we could keep the traditions that we felt were special but omit the ones that didn’t feel like ‘us’. St Lukes is a small church in the heart of the village that Gav grew up in and the fantastic vicar, Rev Paul Mason, was on board with the kind of ceremony we wanted from the very beginning. With the reception we wanted somewhere that would give us the freedom to have the laid back wedding we wanted rather than choose from inflexible pre-set packages. After A friend of ours suggested a working dairy farm in Twemlow and on our first visit we knew it was ‘the one’! We were able to do literally whatever we wanted in the most beautiful grounds, with cute calves as an added bonus! We had 70 guests during the day and another 30 arrived for the evening party. It took just over a year to plan.’
How they met
We both met at work and have been together for 8 years.
While we were in Cape Verde, towards the end of the holiday, we climbed a huge sand dune on the beach where Gav proposed.
How did you allocate your budget?
The most important things for us were a personal and memorable ceremony followed by good food and an amazing party, so we allocated the majority of our budget to those things. That left a very small amount for decoration so our DIY skills came in handy.
How did you choose your photographer?
Much like the search for the venue, we also searched for ages for a photographer. When we started out planning we questioned whether we even needed one as the cost would be a big dent in our small budget and we didn’t really like the traditional style of wedding photography. But some recently married friends urged us to book one and now I can’t believe we even questioned it! On the day Cass was fab and captured perfectly the love and laughter that sums up our day. Not a day goes by that we don’t look at the photos and I simply couldn’t imagine having shared our day with anyone else.
My dress was Flo by Charlotte Balbier in Mocha, it had all the elements I was looking for; Lace, not white/ivory and in a boho style – the instant I tried it on I knew that there was no other dress for me. My shoes were a bargain from Miss Selfridge in their sale. From the moment we started planning the wedding I knew I wasn’t a veil girl and had my heart set on a flower crown and it was my favourite accessory on the day (lasting right the way through to 3am the following morning! My wedding ring was my Grandmothers wedding ring which was handed down to me before she passed away.
Suit and bridesmaids
Gav searched long and hard for a suit that was relaxed and not too traditional and after avoiding hire shops we actually found the perfect suit at Moss Bros. The bridesmaid dresses were handmade by my mother in law, and each bridesmaid picked a different style to suit them. Their sandals were from Very, we decided that heels and a farm would be a bad combination!
Theme or colour scheme
There was no real defined theme or colour scheme but rustic, relaxed and vintage were the things we were drawn to. My Mum and Dad became expert vintage hunters on eBay and at antique fairs!
Bunting, tons of it! Along with paper pom poms, which my Mum and bridesmaids spent hours making the night before the wedding. Hearts, lace and lots of hessian also featured.
I didn’t want anything too structured and loved the thought of mismatched wild flowers. Luckily Suzanne at Country Flowers understood my ramblings perfectly and the flowers were beautiful. My bouquet was a mixture of David Austin Roses, Astilble, Pink Gyp, Limonium Ellie and Rosemary – tied with jute string. My flower crown was white gyp and wax flower. The bridesmaids had Limonium Ellie, wax flower and gyp – tied with vintage lace. The button holes were so lovely with Rosemary, Wax Flower, and Lavender – tied with jute. Our family and friends collected tons of empty glass jars and me and our bridesmaids spent a sunny day in the garden this summer decorating them with hessian, jute and lace. I tied them to the pew ends at the church and dotted them around the tables at the venues. Suzanne filled them with a mix of wild flowers and herbs and the effect was stunning.
Food was really important to us and there was plenty of it! We kicked off the reception with afternoon tea and a selection of yummy bite sized cakes washed down with pimms, beer, tea, coffee, rose lemonade and ginger beer. Dinner was a hog roast supplied by The Sizzling Pig. Sides were beautiful tarts, summer salads and smoked salmon supplied by our wonderful friends from The Longs Arms in South Wraxhall. After dinner I had arranged a surprise for Gav, a vintage VW campervan serving ice cream. The rain had held off all day but the heavens opened just as Polly arrived with the beautiful Florence, she saved the day however and drove Florence onto the field right beside the marquee, umbrellas were found and ice cream was served!
Our wedding cake was a tower of cheese as we are both massive cheese fiends. The cheese was later laid out for our evening wedding picnic along with some homemade treacle baked ham and with the most amazing cakes supplied by And the Dish Ran away With The Spoon (I cannot recommend these guys enough, they worked with me to provide a cake table different to what they normally do and the effect was better than I could have imagined!)
We set up the fete game ‘Ding the Bell’ which provided hours of entertainment all evening for the very young right the way through to Grandpa Ted! There were also photo props, limbo and giant jenga which kept the kids entertained. Our DJ arrived at 7pm and gave us an amazing party right the way through to 1am. The dance floor was never empty! Our first dance was You’ve Got The Love by Candi Staton.
Buy or DIY your Stationery?
We DIY’d all our stationery -save the dates, wedding invites, order of service, menus and our thank you cards!
Personal or handmade touches
– Gav made some beautiful rustic blackboards which outlined the Afternoon Tea eats & drinks and the Order of the Day. Gav also made the blackboard speech bubbles for the photo props
– I made the seating plan from an old wooden fireguard which I repainted, covered in hessian and attached cute wooden bunting
– Hessian appeared quite a lot throughout the day! We made chair back bunting personalised for each seat (with help again from both Mums and bridesmaids) along with larger hessian bunting (Welcome, Mr & Mrs P, Just Married, Seating etc). We also made the hessian table runners.
– We filled a wooden vegetable crate full of flip flops for tired feet. This was so popular and we ran out of flip flops very quickly!
– My Mum and Dad spent months hunting down mismatched vintage china and napkins for the afternoon tea and table settings
– Our adult favours were homemade Rhubarb & Custard Vodka and Pear Drop Vodka. Very tasty and responsible for many bad heads the following morning! For the little people we made up bags of retro sweets and the babies were given cow teddys.
– 2 garlands for the Bride and Groom chairs made from lace, ribbon and (yes you guessed it) hessian
– We created a ‘love letters’ table with a vintage suitcase which we lined with floral fabric for our guests cards, a vintage typewriter and a pair of vintage shutters displaying photos of our parents and grandparents on their wedding day
– Our guest book was lots of heart shaped buff cards which guests pinned to a message board or tied to the vintage shutters
– I made hundreds of bunting flags for the marquee which my mother in law helped to string together the day before as time was running out!
– And our most favourite of all the DIY items were the G&E light up letters that Gav made. Cass talked us in to putting them out in the field beside the lake as the sun went down and we are so glad she did!. Seeing them lit up along with the other twinkling lights in the trees looked truly magical.
Special moments or highlights
The most special part of the day was absolutely the ceremony – It was so beautiful, personal and moving and we loved every minute of it. The speeches were also amazing and felt so intimate and again were very emotional! And the first dance still gives us goose bumps when we think about it or hear it – seeing all the people we love most in the world fill the dance floor with us is a moment we will never forget. But we both honestly feel that the entire day was so special from start to finish.
What was your biggest surprise of the day?
We were totally surprised at how emotional the day would be! The importance of the lifelong vows you are making and all the people you love the most in the world watching while you marry your best friend is so overwhelming. Also, even though people told us how quickly the day would go, it still completely surprised us at how true that is. So try to take in every moment, enjoy every single second and kiss your new husband loads!
Advice for other couples
If you’re planning a DIY wedding, trust me, it is never too early to start those jobs! Also, don’t underestimate the time and effort involved in setting up (and taking down!) a DIY wedding, we did and had some very late nights in the lead up to the wedding and a very full on day after the wedding. But we put our hearts and souls into the day and would do it all over again in a heartbeat.
– Don’t worry about things too much, everyone is there to support you and have a good time. Your guests will help thing happen.
– Have the day you both want. Drop the traditions that mean nothing to you and don’t feel that you need to do anything just because it’s the ‘done’ thing.
– Do not obsess over the weather (although you will), we did for weeks and hours leading up to the wedding and it was pointless. It did rain and it did not spoil a thing.