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Very rustic, probably muddy, countryside wedding - August 2021

So I’ve been stalking a few threads for a while and I’ve been very much debating whether to start my own yet... but I thought what the heck?!
I’ll do a bit about us, our goals/plans for the day, then what we’ve got booked so far...
We’re still pretty far out from our date, so we still have quite a bit to do!
E x


  • AmyFSToBeAmyFSToBe Posts: 361 New bride
    Yay new planning thread! Excited to read about your plans :blush:
  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    edited 26 July
    E&J - US
    My wonderful fiancé and I met in our first year of university back in September 2013... we made it official in March 2014 and have been inseparable ever since.
    In November 2018 we moved halfway across the country to start a new adventure which was equal parts terrifying and exciting. We moved away from where we’d spent the last 5 years of our lives, back to J’s family home to start a camp and glampsite. His mum had already been running the campsite in some spare fields attached to her home for a few years and we decided to invest the rest of our money into bell tents and interiors and give it a good chance. Turns out people liked it, this will be our second year and all going well - it’s set to be better than ever.

    I always knew I was going to marry J, you know when souls just click? I knew it was coming, but money has always been a little on the tighter side and in June/July time he’d said that he was waiting until 2020 to save up enough to get it sorted properly. I wasn’t worried about timings and knew it would come so just went with the flow. This all turned to be a huge ruse!
    I’d like to also set the scene that in probably 4 months leading up to the proposal, ANYTHING with a hinge J would pretend was a ring. So with a book, he’d get down on one knee and tell me he loved me. In Tesco’s with the tops of shampoo boottles he’d ask me to spend my life with him. Honestly. I would just roll my eyes and get on with the day!
    So on one of the hottest days of the summer, we’d planned on having a bbq just J, his mum and me. So when I went to the shop with his mum in the morning of 25th August 2019, and we’d bought 2 packs of burgers, sausages, chicken, a bag of potatoes for potato salad and a bunch of dessert as other bits I just thought it was her doing her typical mum over buying! 
    I’d agreed to help J with ‘promo’ shots for the farm, basically be and J walking about looking like we were having a fantastic holiday at the campsite. Our really good friend D was helping out with drone shots. BUT, I was being super moody because I just wanted to sit with a glass of Pimm’s not wander about.
    We went down to one of our favourite fields, and walked across the field to get one of the final ‘shots’. I was really done by this point, and you can actually see me on the drone footage turn to walk back again when....
    J got down on one knee, and proposed. Again due to all of the pretend proposals none of the above actually clicked in my brain and I ROLLED MY EYES and went to pull away before thinking OH, there’s actually a ring!
    There was of course lots of happiness, I FaceTimed my mum and realised she was up at J’s mum’s house so literally ran up there to share the afternoon with them! We took photos, ate good food (all of the food made sense then! As my parents, sister and J’s brother and his family were all up at the house!) and generally had a really fun afternoon.
    We finished up by J and I roasting marshmallows and drinking cider next to a fire pit completely soaking up our fun day!
  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    The ring is a fire opal set in a diamond surround. J’s brother and sister in law own an antique shop and it’s from there, so it’s so lovely to know that it had a life before me and they all had a hand in my ring!

  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    So when I say our dream day, I really don’t think J cares what goes on or happens as long as he can pick a suit and his best men... honestly, the only question he asked the photographer was if he could have a photo of his best man doing his tie in the morning. Like... how helpful in deciding our first expensive decision...
    Which leaves a lot of decisions down to me, which is fine.. if not a little stressful!
    But I have been pinning ideas for this day long before I met J so I was in my element... until you realise quite how expensive wedding related stuff is. The £28k average wedding cost makes a lot more sense when you realise caterers charge £25ph for a bloody cold buffet?! What an absolute outrage.
    Even if we had that sort of money, we would not feel comfortable spending it. We don’t have a house, and that’s definitely more of a priority to us than essentially a big party that we usually do with 200 chicken nuggets and a few bags of crisps...
    So we have to move our goal posts a little. We’re both incredibly chilled people, and I genuinely believe that most of my Pinterest board was what I THOUGHT a wedding should be, when in reality, it’s a lot simpler than that.
    I wanted glitter table cloths, huge flower installations, maybe neon lights, a plated 3 course meal. We actually didn’t want that so badly we almost convinced ourselves to just elope and go away and get married privately. But we decided if we were going to do that, we’d have to come back and have a party as our friends and family are hugely important to us and if we were going to do that we might as well just do it all and find cheaper alternatives to the norm to make it more us.

  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    Our wedding date is 07/08/2021, which is so exciting!

    We’re super (like, eternally grateful) to live with J’s mum who has a beautiful barn that’s being converted to an event space, with all of its outdoor space to allow guests to camp if they wish. It’s important to us that this day celebrates us and as much of it as possible is tailored or crafted to what we love and want.

    Our day as it stands at the moment:
    11am-ish - Get married in local registry office just us and our parents (I won’t be in my dress at this point, or in full makeup/hair. So it’ll still be a surprise when I walk down the aisle)
    3.30pm - Guests start arriving at the barn with welcome drinks
    4pm - Ceremomy to begin, hosted by our best friend who’s been there since the start
     4.45pm - Ceremony to finish, bar to open, fish and chip van to begin serving, lawn games and photobooth 
    7pm - evening guests and band to start
    7.30pm - first dance
    8pm - cake cutting
    9.30pm - DOMINO’S (yummy yummy!)
    12.30 - fire pits and camping gossip!

    So we’re got our photographer booked, and we’re also booked our Fish and Chip van which we’re super excited about! The fish and chip van is working out around £9.80ph (including VAT) including disposable serving plates, cutlery, and sauces, we love fish and chips (they also do chicken, sausages and halloumi) which was so us and super affordable. The domimo’s at the end of the night just nods to many a student night which ended with the pizza and a run down of the night! And with pizza ordering the more you order the cheaper it becomes, with most offering 50% off when you reach a certain limit.

    I think I’m (along with my bridesmaids who are a resourceful bunch!) going to make the invites, do the flowers and decorate the barn and courtyard. Does anyone have experience of this? I’d love to hear the good and bad of this and anything else you’d recommend diying! We’re lucky we can put stuff up the week before if necessary and have loads of time to get it right.

    Our goal is for our guests to feel at home and comfortable all day and be well fed and watered at all times!

    I’d be super interested to know where other people were this far out (around a year and a half) in the planning process. I feel like I’m miles behind but then I try to get stuff done and it just seems too ridiculously early! Like I brought bridesmaid dresses, but then realised so much can change weight wise in nearly 2 years and returned them...

    Things I’d also like recommendations on in East Sussex, if possible: DJs, photo booths, mobile hair dressers, anything else you loved!

    Thanks for coming on this journey and I can’t wait to speak to more of you as time goes on! 
  • GallaGalla Posts: 112 New bride
    Yay another thread! Your wedding plans sound fabulous and I love the proposal.

    Were July 2021, so just before you. We’ve booked the venue, package includes flowers and cake so that’s all sorted. I’ve bought my shoes, booked the photographer. We’ll be getting the registrar booked next. So not much done!
  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    Galla said:
    Yay another thread! Your wedding plans sound fabulous and I love the proposal.

    Were July 2021, so just before you. We’ve booked the venue, package includes flowers and cake so that’s all sorted. I’ve bought my shoes, booked the photographer. We’ll be getting the registrar booked next. So not much done!

    Thanks! Still at early stages yet, but I think as with a lot of things with us they’ll just come off last minute. So I’m not worried (...yet!).
    Your day sounds wonderful though, I’d been stalking your thread before Id even made an account!
  • I love your ring! 

    You're so lucky to have his mum's barn! We looked at a few barn and outdoorsy venues where we could have a similar style of wedding to you but because of the hire costs they were more expensive than a three course meal in a hotel.
  • Northern_brideNorthern_bride Posts: 216 New bride
    What a lovely proposal, it's so nice that it was such a surprise and that you could celebrate straight away with family! The ring is gorgeous!

    It's great to have another thread to read. I think after the wedding I'll be so glad that I started a planning thread, it'll be lovely to read back through it all and to remember all the build up!

    We're getting married in June 2021 and have booked the venue and photographer only so far. I also got my shoes recently and a nice gown for myself to get ready in but that's it. There's plenty of time and I'm enjoying taking my time with all the planning! 

  • CoffeeDogAddictCoffeeDogAddict Posts: 1,475 New bride
    What a lovely story!! My top tip is definitley start DIY when you can be bothered! I didnt start for ages because i thought i was being too eager and now were 4 weeks out and it still isnt done :D

  • annipooannipoo Posts: 303 New bride
    Your wedding plans sound great, and how fantastic that family can help with the venue.

    Don't be worried about booking any vendors too far in advance. There were so many vendors (photographers, hair, MUAs) that I contacted that were already booked more than a year in advance. 
  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    @cluelessbride01 thank you  :) I do too! 
    I know, But I do feel you on the expensiveness... it’s beautiful but we are having to bring in nearly everything. So it’s going to be an adventure for sure! 
  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    @Northern_bride ahh, thank you!
    Yeah, I know, I’m so excited about that too! Will be so cool to look back at all of the prep.

    Oh I’m glad I’m not alone then. I don’t think I actually mentioned but we’ve booked our photographer too. And I’ve been picking bits and bobs up that I see on market place for really cheap. I cannot wait for boot fair season to start!
  • TigerLily8TigerLily8 Posts: 7 New bride
    I think your wedding plans sound absolutely lovely. There's so much pressure for weddings to follow a certain template but the way you are doing it sounds perfect - just how you want to do it. I think those types of weddings that are a little different are the most memorable. Happy planning x 
  • Emma822Emma822 Posts: 14 New bride
    I’m very aware that this time must be absolutely heart breaking for brides who have had to change plans, and I have been very reluctant to post anything to do with my plans in case of upsetting anyone as this would always be my last intention. I’m going to hold off posting anything further until we’re a year out (early August) and will do an update of everything I’ve been booking and have been up to since my last update.
    I’m thinking of everyone who’s plans have changed, and wish you the strength to handle this with love and grace.
    Speak soon! Xx
  • MrsE2be2020MrsE2be2020 Posts: 46 New bride
    As a limbo bride (September possibly but who knows!) I think it's lovely hearing about everyone's plans whenever the wedding is and have to confess as my planning has slowed down i'm living vicariously through threads like yours :)
    Whenever you are ready I personally will love hearing about all your plans
  • wow just had a read through your plans, this sounds amazing! i love your ring

    we tried to look for a relaxed barn like this but they are hard to come by (we even found one which was an evening wedding and relaxed party but it cost just as much as an all day wedding!), how lucky that you're able to use this one! 

    I feel the same with everything postponed at the moment, it's hard to know whether to be able to get excited?! 

    can't wait to hear more :) 
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