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Our Happily Ever After Easter Sunday Wedding Report

I have spent the last 18 months reading all your wedding reports and have enjoyed every single one! 

I have loved following your planning and the seeing your weddings in all their glory!  I have discussed your woes in emotional support and offered any advice I felt I could offer and helped out where I felt I could in choosing underskirts and bras!  In return the help and support I have received from the members on here has proven to be priceless!  You have offered me support and advice along the way which I couldn’t thank you all enough for!

So here is a massive heartfelt THANK YOU!  From me, Big D x


My story is a long and very sad one, so please bear with me, but I promise to give you as many hints, tips and DIY pics as possible! image





    I was married before to a nasty controlling loser.  On my wedding day I was 8 months pregnant and the ceremony was at the registry office in Pontefract and we then had a pub lunch at the wacky warehouse.  I was miserable.  The marriage itself was short lived and almost unbearable.  He used to hit me whenever he got drunk, so when we went to a family BBQ for his nephews 2nd birthday with a crate of 24 beers I knew I was in trouble.  He was evil.  I was terrified of him.


    The week before Christmas 2006 I caught him red handed cheating on me with a work colleague of his.  When I approached him he beat me up, raped me, locked me in the house and smashed my mobile and the house phone so I couldn’t call the police.  I spent that Christmas covered in bruises and in a lot of pain. 


    I started to look for a way out and looked at some unsavoury options as well as some realistic options.  I was so depressed I could barely function.  My work was suffering and I was getting into trouble.  It was then that I was moved teams to one with fewer deadlines and targets to help me cope.  It was on this new team that I met Claire too.  She was unstable and needy but lived in a house by herself and was wanting someone to house-share with.   I agreed to rent 2 rooms from her for me and my daughter so I could attempt a fresh start.  I arranged to visit her one night for a ‘girly night in’  which my ex agreed to very easily.  In hindsight, too easily.  I went to her house and we sat and chatted and all the hurt came pouring out, we sat and opened up to each other and gave each other misguided counselling. 


    When I got back home that evening, my house had been cleared out.  Nearly all the furniture had gone and he had took my 2 year old daughter.  I called the police and they asked me what did I expect them to do?  A Solicitor laughed at me and told me to come back when I had found her because there is nothing he could do without an address.  The loss I felt was akin to a death,  I felt like my baby had died.  I had no idea if or when I would see her ever again and there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it.

  • I moved in with Claire and I went off the rails really quickly.  She was a bad influence and was always dragging me out into town to fuel her lust for attention.  I was in Leeds getting drunk 3-4 nights a week and eating nothing but chips, kebabs and toast.  I wasn’t sleeping around but could have easily got myself into a lot of trouble.


    At the start of March my housemate dragged me out into town with her because she was meeting a group of men she used to work with.  We were sat in Revolution in Leeds when this group of men approached us, one of them was 6’ tall, dark hair and a beautiful smile.  He introduced himself to me and flashed me this cheeky grin so I ran away to put some make up on.  I stood looking in the mirror in the semi darkness of the ladies’.  What I saw was not good.  Limp hair with flecks of grey (I was only 26) greyish skin, overweight and dark circles.  I looked haggard and sickly. Who was I kidding??  Why would a gorgeous sexy man want this??  I wandered back and proceeded to do what I did best.  Get blind stinking drunk.

  • Gem83Gem83 Posts: 868

    holy cow. please keep going, my fingers are crossed for happy ever after for you. x



    A week later I got a random text. 

    “I know this is a little out of the blue, but how would you fancy having a drink with me next week?”

    OMG OMG OMG OMG, really? Huh?  What the? OMG!

    I sent a cool text back “yea sure, Wednesday ok? what time?” 

    “I’ll pick you up at 8.  Can't wait to see you”


    I then had a massive panic…


    My god my hair!  So I dyed it

    My god my face!  So I bought some nice new make-up

    My god my clothes!  Couldn’t afford clothes so I got my housemate to attack the scraps of clothing I had salvaged to come up with something presentable.


    I was so nervous I felt sick.


    On Wednesday he turned up in a taxi and we sat in silence in the back.  He reached over and held my hand gently, I just stared at it like it was alien to me.  I wasn’t used to tenderness from a man.  I think I liked it.

  • He took me to Brown’s for a gorgeous meal and then to Revolution where we first met where he bought me cocktail after cocktail until my head started to spin!  He could drink more than I could and I was not prepared!  So he took me to sit outside where we sat chatting for ages.  He then reached over to touch my cheek and I flinched slightly.  I could see in his face that he was mortified, so he shuffled closer and put his arm round me with my head on his chest.  I could have cried.  I relaxed and sank into him, letting him hold me and enjoyed the moment.  I looked up and it was at that moment when he kissed me gently.  It was as if all the pain, the hurt and the evil went away for a moment. 


    Then I froze.  Why did this beautiful man want to kiss me?  Short fat ugly me?  Me who has more baggage than British Airways? Through the haze of the cocktails I decided why worry about that now?  So I kissed him back, like I have never kissed a man before.  With longing and passion.

    ke it ??? ai0a_Z  I wasn’t used to tenderness from a man.  I think I liked it.


  • Sorry its longer than I thought!  Heres a sneak pic of the dress in the dress shop to apologise!





    I saw more and more of MrMcG and he helped me enormously, he was my rock and words of wisdom.  He grounded me and was just what I needed.  Yes it was very soon but I think if I had been left any longer on the road I was on, something bad may have happened to me, so in my eyes he rescued me from myself.


    After a few months I went to a charity event at work, and for the first time in months I had a drink and in the taxi on the way home I sat there longing to want to go home to him instead of my empty rented room.  So I text him as any normal drunken person would at 2am with a belly full of wine…(This is the exact text)“I donkt wrnt gr  jhhome it cwolrd n lunroly.  I wbant 2 @be in yowl arms.  I thlkn a loudeo you. x”   

    The next day MrMcG came to see me.  He did not look happy.  “We need to talk” he said.  My heart sank.  He took me to my room and sat me down and I started crying uncontrollably.  He started laughing and put his arms round me and said “I loudeo you too.  Stop crying and give me a kiss”.  Snivelling and hiccupping is not attractive but he didn’t seem to mind!


    Time goes on and I tracked my daughter down thanks to an old friend who saw him in town and followed him.  I managed to get some form of visitation going where I had her 3 days a week, (she was 3 by this time)  I calmed down my eating and drinking habits, I moved out of my housemates and we rented a house together.  My life was coming together. 

    Over the next few years we plodded on with life and had plenty of ups and downs but always managed to overcome anything that was thrown at us. We had a few budget holidays and continued to collect furniture to build ourselves a home.  Things were looking good.



    In 2011 we booked a trip to Edinburgh for 3 nights.  On the way there we stopped off at Bamburgh to stretch our legs and to have a picnic.  We took a walk through the sand dunes and then strolled down the beach, after a while MrMcG suggested we head back for something to eat.  On the way back through the dunes with BamburghCastle looming above he put his arms round me and asked me if I wanted a present?  He produced a small mustard and gold Goldsmiths box and asked me to open it.  I started crying and my hands were shaking so bad I couldn’t open it so MrMcG had to do it for me and produced a beautiful white gold diamond ring.  I was still blubbering and shaking so when MrMcG asked me “Is that a yes then?”  I nodded furiously and launched myself at him in a bear hug.  A couple walking their dog walked passed us smirking so I pulled myself together and stood there beaming.  The rest of the trip was lovely, we stopped in a boutique hotel called the Hawke and Hunter, walked around Edinburgh seeing the sights and had an amazing meal at Mark Greenaways restaurant.  I loved every minute of it!


    On the way home my head was swimming with ideas and I suddenly found myself in wedding planning mode!




  • LittleRed_10LittleRed_10 Posts: 1,453

    Keep going! After rough starts weddings and marriages seem to be so much more fairytale like!

  • Thanks ladies!  I am still awaiting for professional pics but I have a fair few of family and friends pics to go off! x



    Towards the end of the year MIL invited us to go live with her to allow us to save quicker and also to be able to get a deposit to buy a house quickly.  After much debating we decided to go for it.  We moved in February and sold/skipped all our furniture.  As the weeks went by it became apparent MIL was a bully, she bullied us on all sorts of wedding related issues.  She demanded we invite 10 of her friends as she didn’t want to be a stranger at her own sons wedding.  She also demanded that the table with her friends on was situated at the front next to the top table, she wanted to choose the menu because she is a picky eater and threatened to take a packed lunch to eat in the car if we chose stuff she didn’t like.  Doesn’t sound too bad but the demands were daily and were gathering momentum in their ridiculous nature. 


    She took me to a bridal warehouse and bullied me into buying a sample dress which was too short by about 4” and didn’t fit me on the hips because it wasn’t made very well and kept twisting out of place when I moved about.  After a few months of flapping about the dress I decided to buy a new one from a proper shop.  MIL was not happy.  She wanted to go to the shop and have it out with them and when I said no all hell broke loose.  She told MrMcG that I was a liar and liars are not welcome in her home.  She ranted about how the whole wedding is all about me and nothing to do with her.  She ranted that there was a small ink smudge on her invite which I had put there on purpose.  She then changed the locks because she thought I had been in her room looking through her stuff.  She gave MrMcG the ultimatum of her or me and when he chose me she refused to come to the wedding.  MrMcG was devastated.


    This new development meant we were homeless so me, MrMcG and my daughter went to crash at my MOH house for a few days until we could find somewhere to rent.  We got lucky and found a lovely little 2 up-2down terraced house and moved in with nothing but some suitcases and a mattress.  We then spent the weekend using the wedding budget to buy furniture and necessities such as plates and cutlery!


    This meant the wedding budget was blown and the change in circumstances meant we could no longer afford our wedding and we would either have to downgrade everything or cancel. 

  • We were determined not to let the hag win so we did some faffing and uninviting of MIL friends and downgraded everything she had bullied us into and bartered with our vendors to ensure we could still go ahead.  I was excited again and was looking forward to our special day again.


    At Christmas MrMcG went to see MIL for an hour and she announced that she is coming to the wedding but wants nothing to do with me and wants to be on the top table and have all MIL privileges reinstated.  I was mortified.  I understand she is his mum and I understand its hard for him, but now I found myself dreading the wedding because she would be there.  I kept having nightmares about walking down the aisle and catching her eye and falling over, or having my photo taken and hearing her cutting comments about my weight or my dress.  I was so upset for the months leading up and I kept hoping she would change her mind.


  • Aaaaand were off!




    We knew from early on the kind of venue we wanted.  We knew we didn’t want a corporate function type place and we knew we didn’t want anywhere modern.  We looked at over 15 venues, mostly country manor houses and some were absolutely stunning!  We narrowed it down to 4 –

    Wentbridge House



    Kings Croft



    Rogerthorpe Manor



    Waterton Park




    MIL offered MrMcG some money towards the wedding as a gift, which I was wary about accepting.  In the middle of the viewings MrMcG took a phone call from MIL.  She had booked herself into see Waterton Park and wasn’t impressed.  She complained of chips in the paintwork, a dead spider on a window sill, a bit of peeling wallpaper and some other excuses.  I wasn’t happy.  I could see where this was going.  She was booking herself in as a bride to be and visiting all the venues we were considering and telling us what we could and couldn’t have.  We were not amused. 


    I went to Kings Croft a week or two later to deliver a cake for another bride.  The staff were rude and made me walk round the long way through several double doors and up steps because they said the patio doors were alarmed.  After I struggled with the 14kg wedding cake through the venue a staff member opened the patio whilst I was setting the cake up and started having a smoke.  I was absolutely furious!  I was ready to slap him!  So that struck Kings Croft off the list!


    So it was a toss up between Wentbridge House and Rogerthorpe Manor.  We sat and did some intense number crunching!  Rogerthope Manor was coming in at roughly 1K less than the other so it was a no brainer really!  MrMcG booked a second viewing with MIL in tow to make sure she didn’t try and pull any sly tricks.  All the way around she was pointing stuff out.  Theres a chip in the skirting board, theres some leaves on the grass, theres moss on the stone arch in the grounds, theres a scuff on the wall, theres dust on one of the window sills and so on and so on.  This woman would still be unhappy with Buckingham Palace!  So we booked ourselves in for a tasting session to try and let the food persuade her.  The vegetable soup has mushrooms in it, the chicken is too big, the beef wellington isn’t how she would make it, why is there cheese sauce on the broccoli? The food was gorgeous and there was plenty of it!


    We gave up and booked it anyway with a background chorus of “Ill be eating my packed lunch in the car if you don’t choose food I like”


    We didn’t care because we were over the moon with our venue and the wedding coordinator was marvellous right from the start.  She answe

  • Meant to say...

    She answered any questions I had without quibbles.  Just amazing!

  • MrsB2B:)MrsB2B:) Posts: 244
    It really does sound like you found your prince hun! I can't wait for more! So glad you found your daughter! X
  • MrsJCMrsJC Posts: 2,204

    Hi, MrsMcG - thanks so much for writing a report, I'm loving reading about it, and I'm so happy for you after everything you've been through. x



    I started dress shopping early because I am a big girl and had no idea what it was going to cost or whether I would even be able to get anything to suit me!  I booked an appointment with Berketex in Leeds and went along with The Wife and my Mum, I tried on several really pretty dresses all of which were lovely, but when asked to try on this big beautiful Tom Flowers tulle number my friend and Mum started crying.  I knew I had found my dress! 


    Naaat!  £2000 was waaaay out of my budget!  I had to come up with a plan B, so I carried on shopping.


    That was when MIL dragged me to a bridal warehouse to try stuff on.  I was there hours being shoehorned into one ugly dress after another.  None of them were right.  The woman was stroppy and impatient and MIL was more interested in the fascinators.  Then the dress shop lady made me try on a tulle dress which was lovely, but it was too short at the back and kept popping up over my hips when I moved.  I wasn’t impressed but MIL bullied me into buying it…


    6 months later it was preying on my mind so I tried it on at my mums.  I looked chuffing ridiculous.  My Mum couldn’t believe how bad it was so we agreed to sell it on and start dress shopping again. 


    After the dust had settled on the MIL issue and we had decided the wedding was still on I started dress shopping again with ‘The Wife’.  I dragged her to about 5 dress shops trying on what seemed a hundred dresses!  Some were nearly maybe’s and some were just no!


    I then tried on Veromia 61067 and I fell in love all over again!  I loved it!  It was the most beautiful dress I had ever seen and I felt amazing in it. 






  • Thanks ladies I feel the luckiest woman alive atm.  Great husband, wonderful daughter, amazing friends and family and a fab job image

    I know its heavy reading but I promise Ill get more pics! xxx



    I originally thought I would just get them all an off the peg jobby from BHS or Debenhams.  Debenhams didn’t have anything in the colours we were having (MrMcG had chosen pistachio green) and they didn’t fit any of my girls very well at all!  Who do they make them for anyway??  Big busted hill giants?  They were all a foot too long and massive on the chest and 2 of my ladies have VERY big chesticles! 


    Back to the drawing board!


    I booked an appointment at a local shop to have a look at their wares.  This is where I spied a Romantica of Devon dress called Fiona and I was mesmerised by it!  I thought it was gorgeous and my girls were really excited by it too!  It was so elegant!  The pistachio green also seemed to flatter all of their skintones somehow too!  BONUS!


    Job done! 





  • Mrs MarlerMrs Marler Posts: 183

    More More!!!


  • *Freckles**Freckles* Posts: 147

    Oh my gosh I thought my MIL was bad - but yours sounds horrendous! You deserve a medal for putting up with that! Looking forward to reading more

  • Shoooooes!

    From early on I knew I wanted diamante encrusted shoes, but I wanted peep-toe, full backed low heeled diamante encrusted shoes!  (not at all fussy eh?)


    So I looked for a tutorial and came across The Bride Fairy!  she has a full tutorial on her webpage which proved priceless in my quest for peep-toe full backed low heeled diamante encrusted wedding shoes!


    So I bought some silver shoes (as previously mentioned) and about 5000 diamantes in various sizes from 1mm-4mm as I wanted my shoes to be more delicate and intrinsic than any others I had seen.  The shoes cost me £5.99 and the diamantes some gem-tac and a gem setter cost me about £15!



     It was a labour of love to say the least.  I spent hour after hour sticking diamantes to them and finished them off with a small satin rosette.







  • this is like a fairy tale! congratulations you deserve all the happiness in the world 



    What a headache!

    MIL once started a flower arranging course and because she lasted a few weeks that automatically made her a flower arranging expert.  MrMcG told me that there would be no negotiation in this matter unfortunately, so I was stuck with it.

    She suggested gerberas, which I graciously declined as these were what I had at my last wedding

    She suggested calla lillies so I went off and found some ideas and she then said theyre a little too tubular so would be better with something else.

    She suggested roses so I went off and found some ideas and she then said theyre a little too brittle so would be better with something else.

    She suggested tulips so I went off and found some ideas and she then said theyre a little too tubular so would be better with something else.

    She then suggested chrysanthemums so I went off and found some ideas and she then said theyre a little too brittle so would be better with something else.

    Do you see where this is going?


    I’d had enough after 3 months of this [email protected] and being overly polite to her obvious objective behaviour and general awkwardness so I decided to just leave it alone for a while and hope the issue would go away.  I then saw a pic of a gypsophila wedding and fell in love.  Just as well really because after the fall out I was left with no budget for flowers and no flower arranger.  So I started buying gypsophila from supermarkets and experimenting…  I discovered it wasn't Voodoo and it wasn't rocket science!  I could do this myself!  I didn't need evil controlling MIL or an over priced florist! (quoted £90 for my bouquet of Gyp, nothing else) 


    We had bought some old fashioned milk-churn style vases from Ikea for £6.99 for 2 and the gypsophila looked awesome in it! (Ignore the lantern - this was something MIL picked up to go with our arrangements which just didnt go)




    So I now had the task of making all my own flowers the day before the wedding!  Awesome huh?!


    I needed to make

    7 large centrepieces

    7 small centrepieces

    10 small birdcage style decorations

    5 bridesmaids bouquets

    2 flower girls pomanders

    My bouquet

    6 groomsmen buttonholes

    4 female wedding party corsages


    The Flowers themselves for 40 bunches from a large supermarket MrMcG works for worked out at £60

    The tape, pins and Oasis came to £14.50

    The Freesias for the boys buttonholes (MrMcG wanted something "extra") cost £6 from a supermarket


    So for ALL my flowers including centrepieces, bouquets etc as stated above it came to £80.50



  • image

    A pic of the centrepieces on the day in the middle of being set up (ill be getting professional pics back soon!)


  • MrsJCMrsJC Posts: 2,204

    Your shoes are stunningly amazing! That's hands down the best DIY crystal work I've seen - it absoutely looks professional!

    I also love gypsophylia - I think it looks stunning used as big bunches as you have done, and it works particularly well (I think) with your pistachio green. Your centrepieces are so pretty!



    YAYW has proven to be priceless for ideas and inspiration and deciding on a table plan was no different!

    I saw some beautiful framed table plans which I took inspiration from and went about scrounging!

    I found a solid heavy mirror for £15 in home sense and spray painted it cream.  I then bought some material and used it as a background and fine 3mm ribbon to use as a "washing line" to peg my tables onto.  

    It beat the £90+ quotes I was given for something half as pretty!  some folks were charging £150 for just an A2 printed piece of card!  


     Incidentally the table names were all cakes (sort of)  because I am a prt-time cake maker.


    So we had:





    Kendal Mint


    Upside Down



    It was defo a conversation starter with my guests trying to figuer out why they were sat on a table called Cheese or Upside Down!





    YAYW has proven to be priceless for ideas and inspiration and deciding on a table plan was no different!

    I saw some beautiful framed table plans which I took inspiration from and went about scrounging!

    I found a solid heavy mirror for £15 in home sense and spray painted it cream.  I then bought some material and used it as a background and fine 3mm ribbon to use as a "washing line" to peg my tables onto.  

    It beat the £90+ quotes I was given for something half as pretty!  some folks were charging £150 for just an A2 printed piece of card!  


     Incidentally the table names were all cakes (sort of)  because I am a prt-time cake maker.


    So we had:





    Kendal Mint


    Upside Down



    It was defo a conversation starter with my guests trying to figure out why they were sat on a table called Cheese or Upside Down!



  • Bubbles91Bubbles91 Posts: 120

    Congratulations!!!  I loved the picture of all your flowers in the bath haha!! xx

  • Lucym89Lucym89 Posts: 389

    What a fantastic report! Looks like you went through a really tough time you really deserve the happy ever after. Your MIL sounds like a nightmare I am getting annoyed with her just from reading this so I take my hat off to you. It really does go to show how much DIY can save you sooo much money its so much more personal too. Well I am glued so can't wait to read more. Congratulations image x

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