Our Secret Garden Wedding - The report

Well...It's been just over 3 weeks since we got married and my has it been busy! Time has flown by from a mini moon to the honeymoon and now thinking about packing up all our belongings and moving country. We really are bonkers.

I had a planning thread which detailed all the 'getting together' moments including the proposal image so have a look there if you want to know details haha!

This is us just in case your wanted to put a face to a username!


So after 7 years of dating, 2 years of engagement and 1.5 years of planning, we are now Mr and Mrs! yeyeyeyey imageimage

Married life suits me well so far so whilst still in the honeymoon phase, lets get on with this report!



  • JodielouJodielou Posts: 4,058

    Woop woop!  Congratulations Mrs image

  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    Where to start? I think a nice wedding photo to get you all intereseted may be a good idea. So here we go...


     That wet your appetites? Good let's continue.


    The venue was something that was never really discussed, we didn't go and search for one, and we didn't spend a penny renting one either.

    Ever since I first saw my in laws garden, I knew it would be where we would have our wedding reception. At first I wanted to actually get married outside too, but that soon became just a dream, as we are both Christians and unless we wanted a humanist service, we would have to get married in church.

    So back to the garden. It's around 200m long and is situated in the New Forest, very quiet and sceneic. For my family and friends it would be a 5 hour drive, as I grew up in the North West but moved 2 years ago to be with Hubby. I knew it was going to mean less of my side being able to attend but I went with my gut and we decided on a marquee reception in the garden! image


  • YAY. So glad you're doing a report!

  • Congratulationsimage,more please.

  • MrsJCMrsJC Posts: 2,204

    Yay!I've been waiting for this oneimageimageimage

  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    Here are some snaps I took whilst doing endless amounts of gardening! Seriously, so much gardening! I now have 10 very green fingers, and 1 very pretty garden.

    When we started it was quite a mess tbh, overgrow in areas, piles of garden waste we had to remove, and not too many flowers. I went for a 'secret garden'feel as it suited the 'not so perfect' look of the garden. We planted wildflowers and created secret hideaways to add to the theme of the day.

    Here are a few snaps:




  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    As you can see, lot's of space to work with, which means, well, lots of work! MIL is amazingly motivated and we spent hours upon hours out in the garden. It looked so amazing on the day and felt really satisfying to know we did it all ourselves.

    The great thing about having a wedding in your own garden is that you feel so at home (literally) that you come of as very calm and relaxed. I was able to sneek off for a few 10 minutes alone in the house, which was nice!

    There were big down sides too but I wouldn't go back and change my choice of venue as for us it was perfect and also meant we had a bigger budget for all the others things we were now able to include in our day.

    Here are some pics of the garden the day before the wedding. No pro photos YET so these are just some snaps my sister took.





  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    The dress

    Ugh the dress! I say 'ugh' because at first it was quite a mission. So from the begining...

    This is a picture of the dress I had pinned on my Pinterest board as 'my dream dress' when I first got engaged.

     I went to try it on in a beautiful boutique where I got champagne on arrival, a really sweet assistant and yet, this dress really didn't suit me! It was a great way to start the search, but I soon realised that finding the right shape for my body was the most important thing.

    Not only that though, but to try on dresses you thought you didn't like on the hanger, because my word, they can look SO different when you get them on (my actual dress for example.)

    So now for a few more dresses that came into the running:




  • PinkafroPinkafro Posts: 1,211


  • What a beautiful garden! Why would you have it anywhere else with a garden like that image

    i can't wait see read more x

  • Please keep it coming image

    The garden looks amazing!!!


  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    Then there was what I thought was THE dress.


    I put down £100 deposit on this dress and forgot all about any other dress. Then I got an email from the shop I bought it from at around 10 months before the wedding. They had gone out of business!! image I was sad, but not THAT sad about it. I was, in some ways, a little glad? it was a weird feeling but I knew I didn;t want that dress anymore! So I started the search for a new dress all together...

    I believe in fate, and I think that losing the origional dress was a sign, and I found MY wedding dress in the first shop I went in to! I put down a deposit the following day and never looked back. I dontcompare it to the other dress at all as they are so different.

    On the hanger this dress was not something I wanted to try on. I tried the high neckline dresses and the lace dresses and thought that they simply didn't suit me.

    The shop assistant pretty much made me try the dress on and then it was the end of my search! I found the actual dress. image

    Here is the dress on the model:

     And here itis on me image I added a belt too...




  • JodielouJodielou Posts: 4,058

    Awww, you looked truly beautiful and that dress is a corker!  Looks even better with the belt too x

  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    Thank you image I'm happy to see people are reading this! I shall continue then..

    and thanks Jodielou I was pretty happy with my dress in the end!

  • Wow you looked stunning.

    I love your dress, it seems you were meant to have that one all along!!


  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    Hen do

    I was a bit naughty and had 2 hen do's. One planned by my sister and maid of honor. It was a weekend in Warwick which started on a riverboat cruise where we drank Champagne and played games. I got quite a lot of dares and many more shots!





    We had afternoon tea then headed into Warwick to get ready for the night which was a Medevil banquet!!! imageimage


    I was actualy featured in YAYW magazine which was released the day before our wedding. I was in a small collumn about who you think should plan your Hen. I said it should be someone other than yourself, which I stand by! It was so nice having that weekend planned for me where I could forget the worries of the wedding and just enjoy myself!





  • You look gorgeous. Hen looks like it was good fun too.

  • Aww wow!! Loving the report already Amy-Lou!! image Your dress is soo beautiful!! I love the addition of the belt, really finished it off!! The neckline I really like too! 

    Excited to see the marquee, gorgeous gardens!! image xx

  • SutesSutes Posts: 697

    Congratulations,, really enjoying reading your report

  • MrskdsMrskds Posts: 396 New bride

    Wow Amy-Lou you look stunning!!!! I have been waiting for this report - yay! xx

  • nenjennenjen Posts: 1,524

    Amy-Lou you looked absolutely beautiful! Huge congratulations image  Very much looking forward to reading this x

  • I'm now going to have to go back and read your planning thread! Looks like a beautiful day. Looking forward to more pics.

  • JJ2013JJ2013 Posts: 628

    Oooooh I can tell it's going to be a good report image

    I have to say, I think your dress looks a million times better on you than the model.


  • LouBLouB Posts: 1,129 New bride

    Congratulations Amy-Lou! You look beautiful! Love your final dress choice - just perfect.

    I've also been waiting for this report, hurrah! image

  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259

    Thanks for all the kind words everyone image

    I'll continue then...

    Hen do 2!- Kitchen Tea


    So some of you may know that hubby's family are from Zimbabwe/South Africa and they wanted to throw me a Kitchen Tea which is a big part of their tradition for Brides 2 be.

    So my 2 bridesmaids (husband's sisters) and MIL dressed me up as a terrible house wife with pig tails, apron etc and led me into a room full of ladies from the family. I had to sit and guess what each person had bought me (kitchen related) by reading a poem as a clue. I did quite well! But when I got one wrong I had to do a forefit and stuf wrapping papr down my dress.

    It was such a lovely day and I got so many nice things to take with me to SA (we move in a months time) for our new kitchen! All shabby chic/rustic things, very cute. image













  • Aah a fellow 27th July bride's report! Yay!! Can't wait to read the rest!

    you looked stunning amy lou - hope the rain held off for you like it did for us! 

  • amy-lou-22amy-lou-22 Posts: 1,259


    I chose my wedding ring based on what would suit my E ring but also by going for a style that wasn't often used for wedding bands.

    Mr E chose his ring by wearability, toughness and also wanted something slightly different to the norm.

    Here are the ring the morning after the wedding image


  • BanariBanari Posts: 1,847

    You look stunning in your dress! The belt was a great additions! Can see why you would want to get married the in laws garden too image

    Keep writing I will definitely be back to read more image

  • laurapjlaurapj Posts: 726

    Oooh we have such similar tastes, I'm loving everything I see so far.

    Where did you get your wedding band from in the end? I'm looking for something similar.

    Can't wait for more xx

  • Yay!!! Been waiting for this!!! Love the back garden, and your dress is stunning especially with the added belt!!! Love your wedding ring, and your hen dos!!! xx

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