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Our nostalgic English garden party, 28th June 2013

About us

Mr Kitten and I first met through a rock and metal society at university. Surprising perhaps given the title of this thread, but we are both fans of extreme metal! We are one of those couples who were friends for years (about 5) before drunken shenanigans changed things a little! 3 months after a very drunken night spent together we realised that we had unintentionally fallen in love!


We moved in together fairly quickly, and it quickly become obvious this was far more significant than anything either of us had experienced before. A ear and a half later, Mr Kitten (observing all of my not so subtle hints about my dislike of public proposals) got down on one knee having cooked me a wonderful dinner and spoke to me of our future life together. I won't go into too many details, but both of us cried uncontrollably, and it is a feeling that I wil never forget,


The Ring

I should say now, I am a horribly picky person! I am overly critical and idealistic, making me a very tricky person to buy for! I only tend to wear antique jewellery, meaning Mr Kitten was set quite a challenge. This is the ring, perfectly unconventionally and wonderfully deco.



Miss Kitten was (and still is!) incredibly happy!




  • Just realised I have forgotten the all important photo of us! Try to ignore the fact the H2B has prettier hair than me!



  • Starting the Planning


    We already knew where we wanted to get married before H2B even proposed! A beautiful Natinoal Trust house that is just outside of York where we met and live. This is it:






    The gardens are simply incredible. We knew we wanted to get married with the National Trust as we are both huge supporters of the charity and really wanted to give them the money over anyone else.

    However, it all went a bit wrong when we met with the venues wedding planner. There were a lot of rules about what we could and could not have, and a lot of things that he was insistant that we should spend money on which we really didn't want.

    It seemed like we would be paying far more money than we could afford for something we didn't want. We left feeling very disheartened and ready to ive up on our dreams of a full on wedding and just go for a quick service in the registry office.

  • Venue, take 2!


    Now, much as it pains Mr Kiten, I am a big fan of trashy television! Don't Tell the Bride is a particular favourite, of course! Whilst despondently looking through pages and pages of google results and running around the county collecting brochures for venues in North Yorkshire that did not have something wrong with them (ugly carpets, too expensive, smelling of cabbage and so on!) a past episode popped into my head. In it, the groom had hired a house for the receptionl This suddenly seemed the perfect idea for us. It would give us complete control, avoid corkage fees, drinks packages, caterers we didn't like, basically just be a space for us to do what we wanted. I wasn't particularly confident about finding somewhere that would be prepared to let us have our wedding there, but once I started phoning round I quickly came up with a list of places that in prinicple agrred. 

    We then spent a wonderful weekend travelling round some beautiful houses. Many weren't suitable for what we needed, but certainly gave us some holiday ideas!

    One of the final ones we visited was between the H2B's hometown of Middlesbrough and the North York moors. I had loved it from the moment we found it online, and being there was just magical. We could imagine exactly how it would be for our wedding. It is a large Georgian country house, set in acres of its own land. It has beautiful gardens for the marquee and even a summer house for the wine! The night before my bridemaids, my mum, and I will stay the night there.






     The inside is grand without being imposing, and feels like the family home it is. We have hired the house for 4 days, and it is still costing only around £1000, much cheaper than any of the other venues we looked at, even without the savings on other areas. Huzzah!


  • LittleRed_10LittleRed_10 Posts: 1,453

    LOL oh dear, I literally just had a heart attack when I saw your photo- for a second I thought your fiance was my ex (he's not, but oh my god my poor heart!)

    I think I'm going to enjoy this thread, your theme and tastes seem similar to mine image x

  • Hi Miss Kitten, I love your thread, your ring is stunning and your venue is so beautiful!!! Mr F has prettier hair than me too *dark mutterings as Fox's hair isn't growing as quickly as she's like*. xxx
    Ps. LittleRed - that made me laugh!!! xxx

  • MrsH2013MrsH2013 Posts: 842
    I think I'm going to like this thread a lot. Also I have major ring envy, it's so beautiful!
  • Love love love the ring!! Also the venue sounds amazing. I'm from that part of the world and can imagine it being very beautiful image Can't wait to hear the rest of your plans. xx

  • Thank you everyone! It is lovely to get some feedback. None of our friends have got married or even consider it a possibility for the future so having somewhere to discuss it all is great!

  • LittleRed - I had the same experience when I first looked at a thread on here! Terrifying...

  • Hi

    we did set up a wedding there last year, its a very nice venue

  • Ceremony Venue

    Because our reception venue doesn't have a civil ceremony license, we started looking for somewhere to have the ceremony. We are both committed atheists so a church was completely out of the question and typically, I began to panic! On a now defunct forum I discovered that a National Trust house about 20 minutes from our reception venue performed civil ceremonies! Not that it mentioned this on the website at all!

    Ormesby Hall has particular significance for us, as t wasn't until I was visiting the H2B's family with him that he actually visited, despite living about a half hour walk from it for his whole life! We felt it symbolised nicely the new experiences our relationship have led us too. Oh, and it is pretty! image




     We will have the ceremony in the front hall with (june weather permitting) the doors open and a lovely summer breeze wafting in. Okay, probably rain and possibly snow at this rate but we can dream! Then the champagne reception in the gardens whilst we do some photos. Best of all, the price is incredibly reasonable and they have almost no resrictions and so on. The house will be closed for the day and we will be the only wedding there, so no rushing to leave before the next wedding arrives. The only downside is that because the house is usually open to the public, we have to have the wedding on a Friday. Still, a small price to pay for finally having it all sorted out!

  • The Theme

    We decided not to have a theme as such, but more of a feeling we wanted the surroundings to evoke. We really wanted something relaxed, yet elegant. We both love vintage clothing and I think a lot of people expected us to do a "vintage" theme, but we decided to avoid this as we knew we would start getting hung up on hisotrical details. Instead we are just having a  nostalgic feel with lots of bunting and traditional details. The idea of a garden party completely summed up what we wanted. The colour scheme was already decided before even the propoal, yellow. For us, it is an old-fashioned, romantic and soft colour. We are certainly going more down the primrose route rather than citrus.

  • I have a slight obsession with planning anything, and so of course there is a very comprehensive wedding book! I have put together a lot of mood boards for the theme. So, here are a couple of photos of the growing collection! Sorry about the rubbish photos!





  • LittleRed_10LittleRed_10 Posts: 1,453

    Slightly made me choke on my tea if I'm honest!

    Beautiful venues! I love yellow schemes and have managed to sneak some into my bouquet, but the bridesmaid would have walked if I'd try to make any part of her outfit yellow! I have seen some beautiful daisy bouquets to image

  • LivelifeloveLivelifelove Posts: 1,024 New bride
    How I've just laughed at the ex boyfriend thing!! I so hope that doesn't happen to me....doesn't bear thinking about.

    Your venue looks stunning. I can't wait to read more about your plans.
  • Littlered - I am a bit lucky in that 3 out of 4 bridesmaids don't usually wear colour of any kind, so they are pretty unfussy! Once they accepted they would not be in studded black clothes it was pretty easy going!


    Thanks Pinkstars! I love them.

  • KattiannaKattianna Posts: 272

    Loving this. Keep writing. Also love the fact you rejected venues because they smelled of cabbage. Made me chuckle image

  • Decoration

    So this is probably one of the elements of the wedding I had the clearest idea about. I love bunting, far too much according to Mr Kitten! I even made mini Christmas bunting. Anyhow, we knew we wanted a lot of this. Because we wanted the lawn and marquee to seem like one space, it seemed the best way of linking them without spending a lot. So I began an ebay hunt for fabric and roped in Mr Kiten to cut a ridiclous number of triangles! The binding has yet to arrive, so this is how it is currently looking:



  • Place cards

    Another labour of love for Mr Kitten and I! Far more time consuming than they look, but I am extremely happy with them. They cost under £10 to make 70.



  • Invitations

    So excited as these have just gone off to the printer! I am sure I am not te only person who was shocked at the cost of invites. I found out when I was looking for Save the Dates and I was speachless! I decided to design the Save the Dates myself and got them printed at our old university. They came out pretty well, so decided to do the same with the invites. I still struggled a lot with the design, and ended up doing my own drawing for them. The buttonholes will be freesias so the design is inspired by them and old botanical artwork.

    Obviously these are not our names, but well done anyone who gets the literary geek references!




  • Everything is absolutely beautiful! Looking forward to lots more to come from you! I'm thinking of doing something similar for my place names as you have done- my theme is burlap/lace and pastel shades. Could I ask how you attached the lace? xxx 

  • Thank you! I just used PVA glue and a paintbrush to apply. It is a little fiddly, so I would recommend having lots of heavy books handy to pop them under until the glue dries. The great thing is that it dries clear so you don't have to be too precise! xx

  • The jars!

    These have been a bit of a labour of love! We are using them as small vases and tealight holders on the tables, as well as wiring some up to hang in the trees outside. We have completed about 40 so far...





     We lit a few up with all the lights off and they look so pretty! Only another 40 to go...

  • Bridesmaids

    I have 4 lovely bridesmaids and a bridesman! Two of the 4 ladies are wonderfully rock/goth/metal in style so I was slighly nervous about asking them to wear yellow dresses, but luckily they are incredibly nice people and agreed straight away. We knew we wanted something relatively simple, not too girly, comfortable and that would look good on sizes 4-14. We again struggled with some of the more traditional dresses. They seemed very expensive and we knew we they would hate anything satin or strapless (a couple of the girls are wonderfully well endowed!). I did a lot of hunting and found the perfect dress from the most unlikely source! Tesco clothing! It was only £30 and I squirraled out a discount code to bring it down to £25. The dresses are pure cotton and fully lined, and all of the girls (and me!) have been amazed at the quality. They are all happy which makes me very happy indeed!


     I am replacing the belt with a lace sash and the are going to choose their own white/nude/yellow shoes.

  • LivelifeloveLivelifelove Posts: 1,024 New bride
    Absolutely gorgeous dress. Is it still in stock? I might buy one for me for summer!
  • It is indeed! I want one too! They do it in a pretty aqua colour as well.

  • I actually spotted it months ago, but they kept saying only size 8 in stock, then the next week it would be only size 10 ad so on. In the end they cycled through all of the sizes I needed but I couldn't order as I didn't know that they would. So frustrating. Then I clicked on it again by chance a few weeks ago and huzzah!

  • LivelifeloveLivelifelove Posts: 1,024 New bride
    Found it!

    Do they come up normal size or small?

    Ths is terrible....reading about yiur bm dresses and then buying it myself hehe!
  • Um, about normal. Maybe a little large on the bust but not massively. Haha, no worries!

  • LivelifeloveLivelifelove Posts: 1,024 New bride
    In my excitement at the bm dress I forgot to say how beautiful the jars look. So simple and so lovely.
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