Starting your honeymoon is like stepping into a dream, a time to unwind and celebrate...
Today we head off to sunny Wales, for some amazing scenery and a cracking wedding, courtesy of Photography 34. The lovely couple Rhian and Robert chose a spring wedding and in turn were lucky enough to have some amazing weather. The sun shone all day on their marquee wedding, which meant lots of smiles and some gorgeous portrait shots amongst the amazing North Wales scenery. With an un-fussy day, they chose a yellow spring theme which was reflected in their outfits and decoration. As you know yellow is my favourite colour so I just love everything about this wedding, now if anyone can send me one of those fab giant yellow balloons I’d love them forever!
Rhian and Robert were married on the 17th May with the ceremony at Fawr Medieval Hall House in Chwilog, on the Lleyn Peninsula in North Wales. The wedding reception followed at Red Welly, Ty Coch, Clynnog Fawr. ‘The ceremony venue was only licenced for 60 and so we had to keep it to family and close friends, but everyone was invited from 3.30 onwards to the reception for canapés and prosecco, and then a sit down meal of pie and mash. We wanted a spring wedding and a beautiful setting was important to us – and this setting had it all. We must have checked out nearly every reception venue in wales online and they were all too chintzy for our simple tastes. The simple barns at Red Welly were re-furbished in a really cool and contemporary way which we loved – and so we hired a pole tent and decorated it for the reception so we could control the surroundings and put our own stamp on things! We were engaged for 18 months before getting married and so I guess we started thinking about it straight away – but definitely did the main organising in fits and starts! It definitely didn’t consume us – well, maybe not till the last few weeks!’
How they met
We knew each other from work although we didn’t actually start chatting to each other until a few months before we started dating! We have been together 5 and a half years I think.
Rob took me away for my birthday to the Harbourmaster Hotel in Aberaeron – a cool little boutique hotel in west Wales. We went for a walk along the coast path and Rob proposed by a waterfall that was flowing over the cliff top. He had to hold on to me whilst he did it in case I went over too!
How did you allocate your budget?
We set a budget at the start and tried to proportion things so we knew how much we had to spend on the most expensive things – reception venue (including tent!) and catering. After these were sorted we kind of lost control of the budget – but it was probably too low to start with!
Why did you choose your photographer?
We wanted a documentary style photographer, and we saw when searching for the wedding venue that Tony at Photography34 had photographed there before. The photos were amazing of that wedding and we hoped that he would be happy to travel from Scarborough to photograph us there too. We were delighted when he said yes as he was just what we were looking for.
Dress was by London Designer Lara Hannah and was bought from Hannah Emily Bridal based in Rhiwbina, Cardiff. The dress was a bespoke design – based on Lara Hannah’s Airlia design, but I wanted a low back and so Lara Hannah designed it with a low scoop back at my request. A group of friends from Cardiff bought me the matching cuff from Lara Hannah.
My friend Linda designed and made the back necklace and the matching earrings. The head band was made to match the dress by Hannah at Hannah Emily Bridal.
Bridal shoes were yellow and from a high street store. Bridal wellies were yellow hunter weliies
The suit and bridesmaids
Robs suit was by Holland Esquire and was a mixed tweed panel jacket and matching trousers in navy.
I wanted to keep the bridesmaid dresses quite informal to suit our feel for the day. I decided on mismatching dresses. Ceri wore a floral dress by Almari – the woodland print dress which was nice and quirky, and my sister wore a plain pale yellow dress to contrast. Both Kate and Ceri wore matching yellow pashminas and necklaces.
Theme or colour scheme
Spring like colours to match the season and the setting – mainly yellow, but also lime greens and turquoise blues
A mixed teardrop shaped bouquet which included yellow calla lillies
We had colour pop pom poms hanging in the marquee in yellow, white and blue. The tables were decorated with simple jam jars with tea lights, and tin cans with spring flowers in.
We has some solar lighting for the evening in the same colours.
Our caterers were Outside Catering based in Llandudno and they were fantastic. We had canapés and prosecco whilst milling around before going into the marquee for pie and mash and peas and gravy, with a choice of steak and ale, chicken and tarragon and sweet potato and goats cheese fillings. We had three mini desserts instead of one big one which were really fun – mini chocolate brownie, mini lemon posset lolly and raspberry fool cup.
The wedding cake
The cake was bought as a plain iced cake and was arranged and decorated with yellow tulips by my sister Kate (brides sister)
Rob’s friends are in a band called Sensible Sam and Japan in London, and so even though they were a few members short they did a short set to get the party going. Dave and Sam also played me down the isle to ‘Northern Sky’ by Nick Drake.
After the set we had a local DJ who seemed to go down well. We hoped to get a live band but a series of unfortunate events before the wedding meant that the three months before were chaotic and we had no entertainment the week before the day, and so we were really grateful that everything worked out in the end.
Buy or DIY your stationery?
We DIY’ed our stationary as we are both designers (architects) and wanted the décor and stationary to reflect our hopes for the day. Wedding stationary is generally too frilly anycase which is not really us.
Handmade or personal touches
• The Nick Drake ‘Northern Sky’ song which I walked down to is personal to us as our fist date was meant to be to a Nick Drake tribute act gig. The gig was cancelled but I suggested we went for a drink anyway as I knew that Rob was trying to ask me out! I had to admit during the date that I had no idea who Nick Drake was when I accepted the invite and so Rob has since educated me! It was fantastic that Robs friends played this for us as I walked down the aisle at Penarth Fawr.
• We had two readings during the ceremony – the first by Ceri which I (Rhian) chose – which was ‘Mi gerrdaf gyda thi’ which translates to ‘I will walk with you’, The second was read by Rob’s sister (also called Kate) and was a humorous reading chosen by Rob called ‘ He never leaves the seat up’ which seemed like it had been written about Rob! Many people thought Kate Rob’s sister had written it herself.
• We made personal place settings for all our guests in the same graphics as the invites, we printed place names and the menu on A3 sheets with the graphic and then used them as placements. All the flowers for the table settings were done by my sister Kate.
• Our first dance was to ‘Fire in my Heart’ by Super Furry Animals.
Special moments or highlights
The bit after the ceremony and before the meal and speeches – where everyone was just milling about in the sun and chatting and drinking prosecco. This is when we were most relaxed as the nerves of the ceremony had gone and nerves before the speeches hadn’t quite kicked in!
That the weather stayed fabulous for the whole day – as we’d had quite a bit of bad luck in the run up too the wedding. And also that I didn’t cry during the ceremony.
Advice for other couples
Plan it as you and your partner want it, not to suit any one else’s ideas. It’s your day so let the day reflect your personality.