Our special day…
It was our fifth anniversary together when Greg arranged a surprise visit to one of our favourite places, Chatsworth. While we were there he got down on one knee in front of the house and to be honest the rest is a bit of a blur, but I must have said yes!
We had decided pretty early on that we wanted our wedding reception to take place in a barn, so we visited quite a few in the North West, but none of them had quite given us that feeling of butterflies we were looking for.
Then my mum found Tower Hill Barns online, and as soon as we visited we both knew at once that it was where we wanted to get married. We loved the grounds. So beautiful kept, with an outdoor bar and terrace that looked great. The barn itself was so light and airy – it was just what we wanted.
For me, the morning of the wedding was spent at my parents’ house. All six of my bridesmaids came round and got ready together. It was a wonderfully relaxed morning. The day began (just as it would end later) with a glass of champagne in hand!
Greg started his wedding morning at a house his parents had rented in nearby Chirk, where all of his family were also staying. The morning was fairly relaxed for them too, with breakfast outside in the sun and a Spotify playlist of wedding themed songs to get everyone in the mood.
The marriage ceremony took place in a church very close to where my parents live, so Dad and I walked over together. I will remember those moments forever.
On the wedding day itself
For our wedding breakfast we had a ‘host the roast,’ where we nominated a guest from each table to carve a joint of beef for the whole table. It was a complete surprise for everyone to discover who had been allocated as chef on each table, and hilarious to see the different methods each chef took to serving their guests. We gave each of them a chef’s hat and apron to wear, and we ended up with some very professional carvers! The food was cooked to perfection, and the portion sizes were HUGE. Certainly nobody went hungry.
As the guests were arriving, we had a band called The Tin Cats, playing. They are a two-piece band with acoustic guitar, fiddle and vocals, and a folky sound, playing music influenced by the likes of Mumford & Sons, Johnny Cash, The Dubliners Ed Sheeran and Chuck Berry. They set up outside in the sun, looking really cool in their shades.
In the evening we had DJ Nick, who played all the hits and got everyone dancing, both indoors and outside. (The music at Tower Hill Barns can also be played through the outdoor speaker system.) Both the band and the DJ were found on WeddingJam.co.uk.
Due to the amazing weather, Jo suggested that we have our first dance outside. That worked out perfectly. It was a very special moment, dancing to Everlasting Love by Natalie Cole. During the dance, the cows in the fields opposite could obviously hear the music, and they walked down to the fence to have a nosey at what was going on. That was quite amusing!
Other funny stories? Well, Greg was rather eager during the church ceremony. He blurted out his line ‘I will’ way before the vicar had a chance to finish his sentence. Everyone had a good giggle and it definitely let everyone relax into the ceremony, which was lovely.
Straight after the wedding, we headed up to the Lake District. It was the perfect way to relax and unwind following the inevitably hectic build-up to the wedding. Again, we were lucky with the weather, which gave us a chance to go kayaking on Lake Windermere, and drink a few cocktails on the hotel terrace. We’re saving our main honeymoon so that we can prolong our wedding celebrations. We are off to South Africa for an adventure-filled week, followed by a week of complete relaxation in Mauritius. We cannot wait!
Here are my top tips for other brides
I wish I’d known beforehand how quickly the day goes. I know this is what everyone says, but it’s so true. It’s over in a flash, so make sure you savour every moment. Greg and I managed to spend some time together before everyone arrived at the barns, just to try and catch our breath and take in the fact that we just got married. That’s a good tip.
One thing we discovered was that canapés disappear quickly. We were determined to eat all the food on the day, but we faced some stiff competition from our guests! Luckily Jo had put some canapés to one side for us to munch on.
Oh, and another tip. It can get really hot in a 3 piece suit when the sun is shining. In our case, the weather on the day was unusually hot, so jackets were quickly abandoned!
Our wedding suppliers
The Wedding Dress: I tried on quite a few dresses before finding ‘The One.’ Eventually, I got my dress from Agape in Altrincham. They were so lovely and incredibly patient even though I was really indecisive!
The Florist: Our florist was Rebecca from Ivy, Pip and Rose, and our flowers were absolutely beautiful. The garland she made for the top table was absolutely stunning. It was like my Pinterest dreams all came true!
The photographer: Our photographer was the amazing Emilie May. She has a relaxed shooting style and takes quite natural shots. She captured our day perfectly and we will treasure those photos forever.
Makeup: My makeup was done by the gorgeous Victoria Hughes from Cheshire MUA. Have I mentioned I’m no good at decisions…?! I kept changing my mind about what makeup I wanted for the day, but she was so patient with me. And, despite the 27 degree temperatures on the actual day, my makeup stayed in place throughout.
Hair: The super-talented Emma Marshall from Vain in Chester did the hair for me and my bridesmaids, and all the hairstyles were just gorgeous. My hair stayed in place until the very end of the evening.