My Barn Wedding- Cider and Sunshine!

So I love this site and always enjoy read what everyone has to say. I've found that actually I've used it a lot more now my wedding is over than I ever did during the planning process and I know that's because it is hard to accept that now life goes back to normal and it really is all over.

I decided that writing a report is one way to ensure that I can have an excuse to keep thinking about my perfect day for a little bit longer!

I'll start by saying that I didn't create a planning thread and actually the whole planning process for me was relatively straight forward and enjoyable. I'm a very organised person so was always ahead of schedule; my bridesmaids often asked to help with things for me to turn around and say that I'd already done everything! I do think they actually wanted more involvement in the prep side of things but I just wasn't very good at letting go!

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    When choosing a venue, we knew we wanted somewhere with a barn appearance. We booked in 4 venue viewings in the space of a fortnight, the final one being Blake Hall- this is where we loved and I'm so glad we chose it.

    The day before the wedding we were given a 2 hour window to set up the barn as there was no wedding the day before. I am so glad we got this time as this really helped me to focus my mind and i got to see that everything I had envisaged actually came together just as I wanted it to. My now- husband spent the evening at football and enjoyed a few drinks with his mates while I settled in for the evening on site in a lovely cottage with my 4 bridesmaids and my mum. As soon as I arrived I hung up my dress on a designated hanger in the dressing room which really got me excited!

    The girls presented me with a lovely scrapbook full of polaroid photos from the hen party and Harry Potter quotes (I'm a big fan). It was beautiful and got us thinking about all the fun we'll have during the wedding reception dancing together again with all of our friends. We collected fish and chips and poured prosecco to celebrate the final night; although I hardly ate anything as I was so nervous. We watched the film Bridesmaids, I had a shower and then we settled in for the night. I could already tell that I wasn't going to get any sleep and I was right. Half way through the night I went downstairs to sleep on the sofa, hoping that a change in location might help and it did a bit.

    Finally the morning arrived, I went back upstairs to join my mum who had clearly woken up emotional as she couldn't stop crying! The bridesmaids then stormed into the bedroom, climbed on the bed full of excitement and gave me the biggest hug. The sun was shining outside already and I couldn't wait to get the day started.

  • VegasLouVegasLou Posts: 821

    Ooh a wedding report, enjoying it so far and look forward to hearing more about your Wedding Day! 

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    I messaged H2B to check he was up and to tell him how excited I was. We had given each other presents the night before so I told him I was about to open it. He told me he had done his last night-cheating I thought, but seeing as it was after midnight he said it counted as the wedding day! I had bought him a watch and a frame full of information about our soon-to-be joint family name. He had made me a photobook with pictures and anecdotes of our history from first meeting until now. It was beautiful and made us all cry! Crying already before the day has begun, hoping to get it all out before guests arrive!

    We had a light breakfast and waited for hair and make up to arrive.My hair was put in rollers while everyone else got sorted. Watching my bridesmaids getting beautified was exciting, all making it feel very real! We had music on and the mood was very calm and relaxed, no one had anything to stress about which was just the way I wanted it to be.

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

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    This is a picture of my sister's hair. The bridesmaids all had similar styles although I had let them choose provided they had a plait somewhere. She was particularly worried due to having very fine hair but was so pleased with the result.

  • HailsHails Posts: 2,455

    I'll be watching with interest - Blake Hall was on my shortlist but we wouldn't have been able to get a Saturday in the summer until late 2018! I've ended up at Colville Hall which isn't far at all from you.

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    Ah we visited colville hall too, they were still building when we went and hadn't done any weddings yet but I could already tell it was going to be beautiful

  • Tanya128Tanya128 Posts: 1,993

    Oooh goody another report! Lovely start looking forward to reading more.

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    I had never considered myself to be especially fussed about flowers; I know what I do and do not like but that's about it, however I'll admit I did let out a squeal when the florist dropped off the bouquets in the morning. image

    The photographer then arrived, introduced himself and took a few photos of us getting ready and small details. He disappeared for a while to shoot around the barn. 

    12pm and my bridesmaid, who is married to the best man, got a text saying that the boys were leaving and were on their way. Another wave of excitement flooded me and I quickly made sure she checked they had the rings before leaving! 

    I then sent some of the bridesmaids out to scout the venue before the boys arrived so I could find out how everything was looking. They told me the cake had arrived and showed me pictures of the barn. I couldn't wait to get out there! imageimage

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

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    We had a cider theme to the wedding as we both  met over a pint! Originally the woman who made our cake thought it was unusual when we asked for apples and pears on our cake as she said it's more autumnal and not typical for an April wedding. When she dropped it off and saw our decor she said it matched perfectly.

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    We had been collecting cider bottles for a year to add to the decorations- definitely the hardest part of planning  

  • MrsRendall2BMrsRendall2B Posts: 343 New bride

    What a beautiful wedding report so far! Looking forward to seeing the rest :)

  • wed172Bwed172B Posts: 1,258

    Loving your report so far love the cider theme really fun :)

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    I then heard another knock at the door but couldn't think who it could be- I had hair, make up, photographer and cake already. It was only then that I remembered I was also expecting a camerawoman to film for 'Say Yes to the Dress'. Suddenly I went from calm to nervous; I had always been most nervous about walking down the aisle and having everyone watching us, but now it dawned on me that I had the added pressure of it all being filmed for tv! I'm not a massive fan of cameras and hate how I sound on camera, but was told I get a copy of everything they film throughout the day which is was sold it to me! Fortunately the woman was lovely, she cracked a few jokes, remarked about how calm we all seemed and then got on with setting up.

    loved the feeling of getting my hair and make up done and was so thankful that I could just sit there and not have to do a thing. While my hair was being curled, my Dad arrived. I couldn't stop smiling, seeing him dressed so smartly and looking so proud. He gave me a kiss and then my mum, who was getting her make up done at the time. It was a lovely moment to have the whole family together; my two sisters were bridesmaids

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    I love this photo of my mum and dad.

     

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    The MIL then arrived to get her make up done, I was so pleased that everything was running smoothly and it all seemed so calm like the morning was lasting forever. Next thing I knew, the photographer and camerawomen were asking me if I was going to put my dress on. I had planned to do this at 1:15 (according to my printed schedule of the day!) but in my head it was still morning. I realised time had suddenly sped away with us and I was 5 mins behind time- shock horror! Not a big deal I know; I feel at this point I should say that I'm a teacher and do like things to run to plan!

    Ok, I was ready to put the dress on! Then I realised that I hadn't even told the girls that they needed to get dressed- could have done it themselves I know but I think we were all a bit oblivious to the time. So I waited for my mum and bridesmaids to quickly dress themselves before they could help me.

    I kicked the girls out of the room while I put it on but that still left my mum (Who would be doing up the back), the photographer and camerawoman in the room with me, alongside my MIL and make up woman who were not yet finished. If I'd ever been nervous about changing in front of people before, I certainly won't be anymore!

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    My mum had trouble doing the zip up to start with which made me panic slightly, especially as I was just talking to the SYTTD lady about how much weight I'd lost! Turns out I just needed to readjust my bra and then it went up with ease. She used a crochet hook to do up the buttons and then that was it! This was the moment when the excitement and nerves really overwhelmed me; the rest of the morning had been so calm and now it actually felt real. 

    Next step was to put my shoes and veil on. My mum helped me with the shoes and the hairdresser added the veil. Now my husband is over a foot taller than me so I needed big shoes! The rest of my family isn't as fortunate in the height department so I was very much aware that big shoes for me would make them look smaller but I really didn't want lots of photos of me craning my neck to kiss my man! They were actually really comfy

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    We then went outside the cottage for a few photos for the wedding. It was already feeling like it was going to be a warm day! The photographer grabbed my bouquet, which I had forgotten to take out of water! This left me posing very carefully with it, trying hard not to get any water marks on my satin dress. Should have thought a bit more about this but with everything else going on we were bound to forget something.

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    It was nearly 2pm, the time of the ceremony and I was still waiting for the registrars, I really didn't want to be late as I hate people being late on a normal day let alone such an important one! At least I knew this was out of my control. They arrived; this was the point when my mum suddenly remembered that she wasn't meant to be there anymore and needed to be seated in the ceremony room. She rushed off to take her place. She later told me that the venue coordinator grabbed the best man to walk her in so she didn't have to go alone with everyone watching her which I thought was a nice touch. 

    It was then time to make the 30 second walk from the cottage to the ceremony barn. It felt so strange knowing that everyone was already in there and waiting and yet I hadn't actually seen them arrive. I was excited, nervous, but most of all, overwhelmed with happiness that this moment had finally come.image

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    We reached the back entrance to the barn and I heard everyone get asked to stand. At this moment I actually relaxed for myself as I could see how nervous my sisters were about walking in first. I focused on making sure I could push them in at the right point. Each step they made could be heard as they walked down across the wooden floor so I knew when they'd made it. 

    It was then my turn; I quickly reminded my dad to walk at my speed and then we were off. Our music was 'First Time Ever I Saw Your Face' sung by Matt Cardle. As soon as I entered the room I could see my man as he's so tall he could look over everyone.

    The aisle was not completely central and there was a supporting beam we had to navigate, sonit had been planned that my dad and I would walk either side then join up, have a hug and then continue the walk arm in arm. It worked really well and surprisingly I really was unaffected by all the people watching (minus wondering what they thought of my dress; in particular some family members who hadn't seen me since losing 4stone)

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    Then we reached the end where I could see how happy my man was, no tears but beaming proudly. My mum already looking teary to the side of us!

    I love this photo because although I'm not looking, it shows my dad and mum looking so pleased and smiling at my man.image

  • Tanya128Tanya128 Posts: 1,993

    Ooh keep it coming really enjoying your report! Well done on the weight loss bet you felt amazing! I've lost nearly 5 stones so know that feeling of wondering what people see when they haven't seen you for ages!

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    image As a side note, this was a photo from last March before dieting began. It was lovely to hear compliments from shocked family members who had perhaps seen the odd photo during the process but not seen me for a year.

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    Anyway, back to the ceremony. Neither of us are religious and so it was simple, no extra readings or anything like that but it still felt like just the right amount of time. Both mum's were out witnesses so that they felt involved- after all, it was them who brought us into the world so meant the most to have them there signing their approval to this next stage in our lives.

    We had two songs for the signing of the register; one to represent each of us- Harry's Wondrous World composed by John Williams for me, and a classical version of I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles for him, the massive West Ham fan. It was at this point in the ceremony where my husband pointed out that he had set up his ipad with a tripod and mic on the mezzanine to film the ceremony. I thought it was a nice touch that he had thought of this, and even better that I hadn't had to worry about setting it up! 

    I couldn't believe that we were actually married! After all the planning and excitement it had happened, just like that, so simple! Simple and yet it had been perfect.

    We then left the barn to Queen- I was Born to Love You. I still have this ringing in my ears when I think of our wedding day, I loved it. 

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

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    The last photo is obviously not the most flattering but it makes me laugh, I can't remember what was said but I have no doubt that it was a joke at my expense!

  • NikkiMNikkiM Posts: 1,417 New bride

    Wow well done on the weight loss! You look amazing. 😊

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    imageOnce we left the ceremony room we were greeted by the sunshine. Actually it was a lot warmer than I anticipated and I could be found seeking a breeze under the dress!

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    We had our drinks reception outside with people catching the sun very quickly. It was lovely receive good wishes and compliments from everyone. A few people came up to offer me horse shoes- I know these are meant to be for good luck but I didn't really know what to do with them! Fortunately my dress had pockets haha! I put them in there until I found someone else to look after them. In each pocket I also had earrings from my nan and a war medal from my grandad who were no longer with us. It was important to have something of them with me. My grandad only passed away 2 months before the wedding so that was particularly hard.

    Here are a few shots of the barn in the sunshine

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    My cousin sang for everyone while we were drinking and taking photos. Our photographer planned in breaks for us to socialise with our guests which was nice. Some of this was taken away to have an interview with the SYTTD camerawoman. Normally as a guest this part of the day feels so long but for me at my own wedding I couldn't believe where the time went! It still felt like the morning when we were told to get ready for everyone to come in for the wedding breakfast. 

    Here are a few of our photos. 

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  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    At 4pm we started getting the guests through into the barn ready to eat. Really I wasn't a massive fan of having a receiving line as I find them a bit awkward as a guest, let alone as the bride. However, our photographer said he likes them as an opportunity to snap photos of families and groups of friends who often walk in together and so I agreed; it did make it easier to get photos of nearly all of our guests. 

    We were introduced and walked in. Again, it felt great to walk in and see my vision from the past year of planning right before my eyes, looking exactly as I wanted it to. 

    Sitting in my dress was like bringing my own cushion to the table! Lovely to have some padding! I was then suddenly nervous about eating in a perfect white dress; do brides often spill food? What if I get gravy all down me? I covered as much of myself with the napkin as possible; good thing to as a couple of times veg tried to fly off of my plate.

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    The food was amazing, good thing too as it was so expensive! I had heard that the portions were big at Blake Hall but I assumed that would just mean compared to the small size you often get at weddings. I was wrong; the portions genuinely were huge.

    we had duck pate with ciabatta to start, roast pork for main and vanilla cheesecake for dessert. I had always heard brides say they were too nervous to eat at their own wedding but I wasn't feel any nerves now the ceremony was done. I ate all of my starter; they even offered us extra bread. Fortunately I didn't take any though as I very quickly felt full and struggled to eat even half of my main. 

    I had planned on circulating the room between courses as I know is polite to do, but it was so much effort getting up and down wearing a wedding dress that I left most of that to my husband, just getting up before the dessert.

  • Midd2SturtonMidd2Sturton Posts: 320

    Here are some photos of our decor etc...

    imageI collected these jars and added the decorations.

    imageOur guest table had a crate for cards, photos of us with our grandparents, alive and not- I didn't want it to just look like a shrine for those who had died. My living grandparents couldn't stop looking at the photos. The back drop is a painted family tree showing both of our families coming together. On wooden apples we had the names of us, parents and grandparents. My husband and I have been doing lots of research into our family trees so it was a nod to that as well as the apple tree/cider connection.

     

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