Our Bristol Wedding
September 6, 2011
So our wedding… here we go!
This is a very self-indulgent blog as I want to remember EVERYTHING.
I actually wore it strapless, was made in the US by Ouma.
It needed a lot of work doing to it and I wouldn’t recommend getting your wedding dress over the internet as you won’t know for sure it fits (mine really didn’t) but after a seamstress and my Mum had worked there magic it was perfect.
Ollie, one of my bestest buddies since freshers week, and my best man.
Our very own butler in the buff he mostly swanned around with his top off dishing out champagne while we all took hours to get ready. He was brilliant, helping the bridesmaids organise an amazing hen and being so much fun on the day which kept me sane.
My mini rainbow of bridesmaids, all I wanted for the photos was colour.
Beautiful Patience, once Michele at Riverstation told me I could arrive by boat nothing else would do.
We originally just went with one they had used before until I spotted this beauty in the marina on my way to work. Then everything was just a bit rubbish and I couldn’t find anything like it to hire.
So I set about getting it, I emailed the harbour master and two different marinas asking how I could contact the owner.
They ALL forwarded my emails, so Bernie the owner got all three and very graciously said he would love to take me to the wedding.
He picked us up at The Cottage, the idea being this backdrop is one of my favourite views in Bristol and we were going to have some photos here, but in the end time and huge winds meant we had to jump straight on the boat.
He even let me have a little (pretend) skipper!
We went right past The Riverstation and Adam and all of our guests were outside having drinks so we hide downstairs… I even spied Adam through a porthole, the memory of the five of us running around on the boat will stay with me forever.
This is where I was just starting to feel like this was real and we were all getting excited.
Also my vision of how my girls would all look together had come off better than I could have hoped, they all looked beautiful.
I have thanked them lots already but they really were the best bridesmaids a girl could have, they organised an amazing hen weekend that was so me, they were around anytime I needed them and kept me calm whenever I had freak outs about my decisions and kept me on track.
Michele the wedding planner at Riverstation made every little detail I requested happen.
The venue looks amazing without any embellishment but with all the decor and touches it felt like ours.
I pained over the decor and every little detail of the day.
It was something I really wanted to be amazing and looking back I am so glad I did.
– the handmade bunting
– the life belts
– the flowers
– the dessert table and cake toppers
– the lighting
– the details like the signs I designed, the hankies, origami (I folded each piece myself), the treasure chest and the escort cards
All little things but together made it our wedding.
Originally I had planned so much more but as we got closer decided to scale it back and I think it was just right.
Then we arrived, Adam and I both had interviews to go through details of the marriage.
Then after the guests had been sat we went up the stairs one by one, I waited until last and stood on the stairs with Ollie with a small case of Tourette’s, my nerves were finally at their peak and I couldn’t stop swearing…
But as soon as I walked around the corner and saw Adam I was fine.
I thought that walking up the aisle with everyone looking at me would be the most nerve-racking part but actually I have never felt more sure of myself ever in my life. It was the best part.
I loved my red shoes, if you know me you know it was always going to be red shoes on my wedding day.
And my Husband wore Jordans. It had to be so, he nearly didn’t but if you know him you know he lives in his kicks, shoes go on only when they absolutely have to. And the first time I even hoped Adam might love me, was when he brought me a pair of Jordans back from NY.
He also wore his naked lady cufflinks I got him and a striped shirt with a red tie.
He looked amazing.
Huge thanks to Aoife for reading a poem I found that sums up how I feel about Adam and to Holli and Baz for being our witnesses, your names are forever tied in with our beautiful day now.
After an impromptu receiving line we had seen all our guests and went off for some time on our own and some fun photographs…
I even had my very own Marilyn moment.
I designed the bouquet myself, I wanted sunflowers but with some read and blue in as well and I added the ribbon myself when it arrived. More colour! I loved it and hardly put it down all day.
I also changed into my second pair of shoes, the cutest Vivienne Westwood/Melissa jelly shoes that are super comfortable, good for walking and dancing! Not like my first pair that were beautiful but are strictly ‘dinner shoes’ i.e. shoes you wear when you don’t move much!
And our guests drank rum punch and found somewhere to sit…
We had jam jars of Dhalias downstairs, I love the mismatched colours, the florist and I picked these up the day before.
I don’t like things being too perfect so I wrote the escort cards myself, I think they were cute.
This was our treasure chest were people could write us messages which we plan to stick in our photo album.
The room after it had been made ready for dinner… everything I had dreamed of!
The bunting was made by my Mum and Godmother and is proper heirloom stuff. I will be using this all my life! (look at the hearts!)
I found the life belts in a window display, so as soon as it came down I pounced and got lots, they were the perfect colours and the perfect nautical nod.
For the flowers I been inspired by the See No Evil event in Bristol where they had little meadows along the street, which was I wanted for our tables so again went with our florist to the flower market the day before and she helped me bring this idea to life. (I will be writing a whole blog for our florist she truly was a star!)
I made a little origami love note for each person, or a little folding paper game with dares inside which was very funny.
Some dares involved pretending to do a speech or running around the room or making up a song, but my faves were the ones where people had to give others kisses… Ollie giving my Mother in Law a kiss on the nose was a proper highlight.
We didn’t have a table plan as such, we seated three tables so that our family and wedding party people could sit together but we didn’t arrange seating and everyone else sat where they liked. We sat with the best men and bridesmaids and their partners, our families all sat together so they could get to know each other and then anyone else involved in the wedding; ushers, poem readers, witnesses etc sat together on another table.
It was very important to Adam that everything was very informal.
Ollie wrote an amazing poem for me. It was really lovely and really funny. I will keep that poem forever.
The best men also gave a very good speech of course rinsing Adam completely. He didn’t enjoy it at first but he came around by the end.
And Adam gave the most beautiful heartfelt speech, the only time all day that I came close to tears.
We had a huge table of desserts, all our favourites and carrot cake for wedding cake. Adams favourite. See more about the food here;
My Mum made the drunken Sally and Adam for the top.
We also had a photo booth, we wanted lots of fun photographs of our friends and knew that props make people less nervous and make for fun photographs.
We got some great ones.
Again massive props to Max the photographer for sticking around for the whole day and night. More about him coming soon as well. I highly recommend him!
Team Barry… the team of Barries (Adams oldest friends) that soon descended into chanting and chaos. Another stand out memory.
Then we had a party.
I danced with my friend Jon. Proper dancing where he spun me around and everything. Another favourite memory of the day.
Meanwhile Adam was doing tequila with his Dad.
And a game of limbo had started.
We danced to Motown, Rnb, Hip hop and Drum and bass. It was amazing, just what we both wanted from our party. I was first one the floor but not the last to leave…
Our friend Hollie sang a beautiful Jill Scott song that will be forever special to us now.
Loved every minute of it and wish i could have that day again.
I will be doing a few little blog posts for a few people who really helped us out.
We did our beautiful wedding on a budget, and looking back through it I can’t believe we did because it was so beautiful and everything I could have wanted.
We were only able to do so because so many people really helped us out, one thing I found with getting married was the huge number of people who wanted to help. It was really overwhelming.
So I really hope I haven’t forgotten anyone and those people who are proper vendors I will recommend and give details for this week BUT…
Sarah Harbour – my make up artist, and all around amazing friend who not only helped me bake my three triple layer wedding cakes, hold make up practise nights, paid for me to have my hair done AND helped me get ready from make up to putting my dress ON ME, she also cooked Adam and his best men breakfast and helped him stay calm the day before helping him find me a veil last-minute when mine hadn’t arrived.
Seriously don’t know what we would have done with her.
Ruth – from Flowers of Stokes Croft, not only made my beautiful bouquets but took me to the flower market and make my mini meadows when on the Thursday before I realised no garden centre had what I needed and I couldn’t do this myself with everything else I had to do. So she did it for us.
She is an amazing florist and great girl. (blog post coming)
The veil shop, which I will talk more on tomorrow, who lent Adam and Sarah veils to bring to me in complete faith before making me one from scratch because the colour didn’t match (blog post coming)
Bernie, owner of the beautiful Patience, who made my arrival dream come true. He is now looking into starting a business so more brides can have the same beautiful journey to their wedding. (Blog post coming when he’s set up)
Max McClure, an amazing photographer, we were his first wedding and I know we’re the start of something huge for Max, he was so patient, so accommodating and ultimately gave us beautiful photographs that capture our day perfectly. (blog post coming)
And of course huge thanks to Riverstation, it really is the perfect wedding venue and the staff are amazing! Especially big huge thanks to Michele of My Wedding Workshop.
Everyone else who helped too. Way too many people to talk about here needless to say I have A LOT of thank you cards to write.
Mostly thanks to everyone who came, it was the best day ever.