Our Sussex Barn Wedding - July 2018wed

Here we go! I have been wedding obsessed ever since we got engaged, and have loved reading everything on here, so thought I'd have a go at my own planning thread! Eek! Partly just to get advice, share our story, and to look back on after! (I'm guessing post-wedding blues may be a very real thing!) 

Our Story

C and I met on a dating app in May 2015. It was a sunny day and we had a drink in a lovely pub garden near us. I couldn't stop talking (nerves!) but once I calmed down a bit it became clear very quickly that this was something good! We had lots in common - we're actually both in the same industry - and we had several more dates quite quickly! I remember thinking how I'd never met someone so kind, funny, and attractive, I didn't think it was possible! 

We moved quite quickly (we're both relationship people!) and after a year together we moved into our little one bed that we rent in beautiful soutH west London. We were planning trips and exciting adventures, and I can honestly say he Has made me the happiest I've ever been! 

The Proposal

We'd been together almost two years, and talk of proposals and rings would come up every now and again, I may have done some hinting! we were planning a trip to Paris on my birthday, and he kept saying it won't be in Paris! the day before we were due to go to Paris, we went to the pub where we first met up for "birthday drinks" (I thought nothing of this since we go there quite a lot) and as we were coming up to the pub, there was a man busking on a guitar, singing what we've always said would be our first dance song (Coming Home by Leon Bridges, for those who know it!) my ears prick up immediately! Then I realised that we were at the exact spot we met, and before I knew what was what, he was down on one knee with a ring box! The ring was perfect, I said yes right away, and the we went into the pub for drinks with our nearest and dearest, and lots of crying and phone calls to various friends and family! Then the next morning we went off to Paris to celebrate! It really was perfect.

The ring!

image 

We knew wanted to get married in about a year, so we set summer 2018 as our target, and then the planning began! 

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Posts

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    Venue Hunting! 

    We began our venue search pretty quickly, as we heard places do get booked up. We decided against a church, since neither of us are very religious, and we loved the whole rustic idea of a barn! My family are from East Sussex, and luckily there's lots of beautiful countryside near us. We looked at one beautiful barn in East Sussex, but the we were a bit concerned about the noise from the main road not far away, and we juts didn't get that "yes" feeling. 

    We went to see another venue the same week, in West Sussex, this time the beautiful Upwaltham Barns. As soon as we stepped out of the car we both got butterflies! It was beautiful, and we couldn't find a thing we didn't like. We had a provisional date the next working day, and then 10 days later we paid the deposit! Our wedding day was official, 22/07/18! So exciting! 

    Here's a coupe of their official pics from the website, I hope we can make it look as beautiful on our day!

    imageimage

     

    So far, I'm feeling quite organised, we are chatting with a photographer next week, I have a cute little stamp for save the dates, and im starting dress shopping with my mum, sister and one other bridesmaid next week. Oh and I have some bridesmaid dresses as they were in the sale, I love a bargain! I'm having six bridesmaids, my twin sister, two cousins and three best friends, I know it's a lot but I just couldn't not have any of them! Registrar is also next on the list - we've phoned them and they have our date and time available , so just need to finalise a time for the ceremony! I'm already a tiny buit overwhelmed (mainly at the cost of things!) but so far so good!

    Let the fun commence! Xxx

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    A quick snap

  • VegasLouVegasLou Posts: 821

    Ooh a new planning thread! What a lovely engagement story, I'm guessing he had arranged your song to be playing at that time? Your ring is beautiful, congratulations. Your venue looks gorgeous. You must be very excited to go dress shopping.  Looking forward to hearing more. 

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    Oh yes haha, I knew Id forget some vital details! C had organised for a friend of a friend to be there playing our song - if it was anyone I knew I would have known something was up! Ah thank you! Bit overwhelming at times but mainly exciting! X

  • Cake18Cake18 Posts: 93

    Aww, that is the cutest proposal! Congratulations!

    Your venue looks gorgeous.

    Enjoy dress shopping, it's such fun!

  • MrsPBtobeMrsPBtobe Posts: 274 New bride

    Was confused by the title of this for a minute because my local pub is called Sussex Barn and not really a wedding venue haha. Mind you it is across the road from a church.

    Anyway congratulations! The venue looks stunning and that proposal sounds so cute.

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    Haha that would be a coincidence! Thanks for the lovely comments, ladies :) x

  • Miss M&SMiss M&S Posts: 15

    Congratulations, I am also from London getting married in July 2018 in West Sussex at Southend Barns. I will be reading eagerly 

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    The Bridesmaids

    I pretty much knew who I wanted to be bridesmaids right from the start, I'd be lying if I said I hadn't thought about it before getting engaged! I have a twin sister, so definitely her, then my two female cousins and three of my best friends. That meant six, which I thought was a lot, but there was no one I could see not having. Plus they all have such different skills and strengths, one is the crazy fun one, another is great with organising, another is practical etc! So I knew they'd be the perfect girls! 

    However, since there are quite a few of them, and the age ranges from sixteen to thirty, finding a dress everyone liked would be the challenge. I found these in the sale at Monsoon, and i can never pass up a bargain! 

    image

    Luckily, all the girls liked them and were so chilled about the choices too! They all just went yeah sure, we'll wear whatever! Such a relief! Plus I know I'm biased, but they do all look gorgeous in their dresses! 

    I don't want to speak too soon, but hopefully they'll all be great and keep me calm along the way! I'm cautious not to ask too much of them, since they're all busy girls, one is at uni, one is planning her own wedding etc, but I would like them to sort the hen and just be with me on the day. They all seem quite excited and open to this though, so so far, so good! And hopefully the delegating of tasks will be the upside of a bigger bridal party! 

    I'm off dress shopping for the first time tomorrow with my mum, sister and one bridesmaid who happens to be good at honest but nice feedback! Very excited and a tiny bit nervous, so we'll see how that goes! Xxx

  • Kelly224Kelly224 Posts: 960 New bride

    Love your venue!  we live fairly local to it so was one we considered as well!  it's so beautiful!

    Look forward to reading more!!

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    So today is the first day of dress shopping! I'm expecting to just go along to get an idea of what suits me and what doesn't, but I've heard that can often be the intention and you sometimes find the one unexpectedly! We're going to two dress shops near where I live, with an hour's break for a coffee in between and then might grab a pizza express after! My mum is soooo excited!

    I'm a bit nervous, I think I'm just aware that this is quite possibly the most important piece of clothing I'll ever wear! My mum keeps saying I should just look online too as it's cheaper! I agree, but not the most helpful thing to say when we're in fancy shops! Having said that, there is actually one on the Debenhams website that looks lovely... but we'll see how today goes. 

    Anyway enough rambling from me! X

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    It's been a while but here's an update :) we've managed to get quite a lot done. It seems like our wedding is a long way off (just over a year to go), and I've had a few people saying "oh wow thats early" but I'd rather do it too early than leave it too late and stress! Also, I've got to stop googling things, as I find as soon as I start looking I start falling in love with certain things! 

    Photography

    We managed to secure our photographer, and have gone with Paul Fletcher Photography. We loooooved his style and thought it would really suit us as a couple. There was a slightly awkward email convo where he got me mixed up with another bride, but we ended up laughing about it once he realised I wasn't who he thought! 

    The Dress

    I went shopping just to "have a look" (famous last words) and booked into two shops. The firs one was full of gorgeous dresses I thought I'd love, but none of them really blew me away. They were quite blingy, and I felt like I was playing dress up a bit! Which suprised me since I always thought I'd go for something quite princessy. Then we went to the next shop, which felt a lot more me. i then tried on an elegant lace number by Enzoani and that was it! It felt so comfortable as soon as I put it on, and I loved the shape it gave me. I'm adding lace capped sleeves, which I think really finishes it off. I then went for dinner with my mum and two bridesmaids and we discussed it all, and after a second trip on my own to try it on again, along with some others just to be sure, i knew it was the one! I hadn't expected to find it so soon, in fact I had even booked another appointment at a different shop pani that I hadn't seen enough dresses, but ended up cancelling since I just didn't want go! I felt like I was cheating on my dress almost! 

    Weve also booked our registrar, and had a first meeting with the coordinator, so it's all sort of coming together! (Hyperventilating at the very thought! I had to take deep breaths when the coordinator talked about walking down the aisle as it suddenly hit me that it was actually happening! 

    Nest step is save the dates and a guest list -  since it's going to be in peak summer wedding season, which is proving to be a bit tricky due to people's partners etc, keeping our numbers to 90 for the day is certainly a challenge for us! but I feel that might be the hardest bit! 

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    Kelly224 wrote (see post):

    Love your venue!  we live fairly local to it so was one we considered as well!  it's so beautiful!

    Look forward to reading more!!

    Ah lovely! Where did you go for in the end? Yay another Sussex bride! 

  • Wibs77Wibs77 Posts: 414
    FutureMrsT123 wrote (see post):
    Kelly224 wrote (see post):

    Love your venue!  we live fairly local to it so was one we considered as well!  it's so beautiful!

    Look forward to reading more!!

    Ah lovely! Where did you go for in the end? Yay another Sussex bride! 

    Another sussex bride here too! 

     

  • britbirdbritbird Posts: 1,453 New bride

    hello from another Londoner!  We are getting married in Essex where we are moving to, in Oct 2018 at Colville Hall.  I LOVE your venue

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    Wibs77 wrote (see post):
    FutureMrsT123 wrote (see post):
    Kelly224 wrote (see post):

    Love your venue!  we live fairly local to it so was one we considered as well!  it's so beautiful!

    Look forward to reading more!!

    Ah lovely! Where did you go for in the end? Yay another Sussex bride! 

    Another sussex bride here too! 

     

    Ah hi Wibs! Nice to meet you! Good to know of other people in a similar area! Where are you getting married if you don't mind me asking?

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    britbird wrote (see post):

    hello from another Londoner!  We are getting married in Essex where we are moving to, in Oct 2018 at Colville Hall.  I LOVE your venue

    Ah hello! Thank you, we sort of knew it was the one right away! Having a sneaky peek at your planning thread now ;) 

  • Wibs77Wibs77 Posts: 414
    FutureMrsT123

    Ah hi Wibs! Nice to meet you! Good to know of other people in a similar area! Where are you getting married if you don't mind me asking?

     

    Cisswood House. 

     

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    britbird wrote (see post):

    hello from another Londoner!  We are getting married in Essex where we are moving to, in Oct 2018 at Colville Hall.  I LOVE your venue

    Ps Colville hall looks gorgeous! That same rustic vibe! Stunning :) 

  • britbirdbritbird Posts: 1,453 New bride
    FutureMrsT123 wrote (see post):
    britbird wrote (see post):

    hello from another Londoner!  We are getting married in Essex where we are moving to, in Oct 2018 at Colville Hall.  I LOVE your venue

    Ps Colville hall looks gorgeous! That same rustic vibe! Stunning :) 

    Thank you!  Hails put me on to it, as I had discounted it for some reason.  Anyway, we viewed it, and fell in love.  It is only 15 mins from our new house too!

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    britbird wrote (see post):
    FutureMrsT123 wrote (see post):
    britbird wrote (see post):

    hello from another Londoner!  We are getting married in Essex where we are moving to, in Oct 2018 at Colville Hall.  I LOVE your venue

    Ps Colville hall looks gorgeous! That same rustic vibe! Stunning :) 

    Thank you!  Hails put me on to it, as I had discounted it for some reason.  Anyway, we viewed it, and fell in love.  It is only 15 mins from our new house too!

    Ahh I thought I had seen it on a thread somewhere! It's gorgeous :) ah nice, ours is too far really from my family, we wanted closer but the only other one that would have worked and was close enough just didn't tick all the boxes! But ah well, we'll make it work :) 

    l the sound of your foodie wedding too! Food is sooooo important! X

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride

    Ceremony Timings

     

    So our latest dilemma is what time to have our ceremony. We have booked 1pm, but the venue are saying 2pm usually flows better. We can change it with our registrar providing they have the slot free, so we should get into it soon if we did want to swap.

    Our thinking is that we've paid so much for one day, we want to make the most of it, and 2pm feels quite late to start. We'd also like to invite evening guests for around 6.30 pm, so they can feel like they're experiencing more of the day with us. We also want to go off with our photographer at about 7.15 for some of those gorgeous photos when the sun is setting! 

    But I can see the venue's point in that maybe the best flow to the day is 2pm, and we keep flitting between the two options! 

    A 1pm schedule would look like this:

    12.30 guests arrive

    1pm ceremony

    1.30 reception drinks and photos

    3.15 meal and speeches

    5.30 speeches finish

    6.30 evening guests arrive

    7pm cake cutting

    7.15 off for some photos

    8pm first dance and dancing starts.

    this seems ok to me, and what we would want really but I keep panicking it'll be too early to start and for people to travel (although most people are either coming from an hour away, or from London, or Birmingham so wouldn't be horrific) and worried about people getting bored! The venue is gorgeous and has gardens, lots of indoor spaces etc, and C thinks that our friends and family could chat for hours (we've got a colourful bunch of guests! Lots of personalities!) and we plan to have lots of live music as we have lots of musician friends who have kindly offered. Also planning on some giant games for extra fun! 

    Hope I'm not alone in worrying about the timings, it seems so silly as it's just an hour's difference! 

  • britbirdbritbird Posts: 1,453 New bride

    We are 1pm too.  I think that sounds reasonable in terms of times, in fact I might steal.  What time are you planning on doing the evening food?

  • VegasLouVegasLou Posts: 821

    1pm sounds like a good time to me and your timing plan looks good. It's your day, I would stick with what you both want.

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    britbird wrote (see post):

    We are 1pm too.  I think that sounds reasonable in terms of times, in fact I might steal.  What time are you planning on doing the evening food?

    Haha oh phew, it's good to have some reassurance! Steal away! 

    Oooh forgot to mention that. probably half 8... Is that the done thing? Can't remember what the venue suggested. We've gone for fish and chips for the evening, I'm more excited about the food than anything else ha! 

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    VegasLou wrote (see post):

    1pm sounds like a good time to me and your timing plan looks good. It's your day, I would stick with what you both want.

    Ah thanks, yes I was thinking surely that should be ok. It's such a tricky one since neither of us have done this whole wedding thing before! Thanks for the reassurance :)

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    Your timings sounds good to me. Our ceremony is for 1:30pm.

  • MrsTraceyMrsTracey Posts: 802 New bride
    FutureMrsThomas wrote (see post):

    Your timings sounds good to me. Our ceremony is for 1:30pm.

    ahh that's good to hear! When and where is your wedding? X

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    FutureMrsT123 wrote (see post):
    FutureMrsThomas wrote (see post):

    Your timings sounds good to me. Our ceremony is for 1:30pm.

    ahh that's good to hear! When and where is your wedding? X

    Our wedding in 24th March 2018, the venue is The Park Hotel, near Abergavenny in South Wales. 

  • Jessica228Jessica228 Posts: 98

    I love your ring and your venue! I've gone for blue bridesmaid dresses as well and saw those monsoon ones when I was looking, sounds like you got a great bargain!

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