Shabby Chic Park - The Report

The time has come for me to finally write my report. I joined this forum 2 years ago and I can not believe I am now a wife. It's a very surreal feeling. 

I remember promising blood, sweat and tears during my planning and while we didn't have the blood in the final week there was plenty of sweat and tears. 

So here goes!

Bride and Groom: Lynsey and Ben




How we met: Tinder. We both swiped right. Lol. I am forever thankful for friends who persuaded me to join. We started dating in May 2014.

Proposal: The boy did good! He proposed on the 28th March 2016 at Dryffryn Gardens. Gorgeous Gothic looking house. Visions of Rochester flashing through my mind. He proposed on the balcony overlooking the main foyer. It was lovely. He had asked my Dads permission weeks before so my parents were waiting for the proposal. 

Wedding Date: Saturday 24th March 2018. We always knew we wanted a late winter or early spring wedding. We chose the date as the weather is usually lovely at the end of March, (how wrong were we for that this year). 

Venue: The Park Hotel, Pandy. near Abergavenny. We chose the venue as it was close to very disabled grandmother and had very good disabled access. I was, and still am, very shocked at the poor disabled access at wedding venues. 






  • Fiona98Fiona98 Posts: 354 New bride

    So excited for this report! ♡

  • Rachel-41Rachel-41 Posts: 18 New bride

    Can't wait to read this! We drive past your venue when we go to visit ours! 

  • New to thisNew to this Posts: 226 New bride

    Woo exciting! X

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    Rachel-41 wrote (see post):

    Can't wait to read this! We drive past your venue when we go to visit ours! 

    Ooh, what venue do you have? I'm intrigued, I looked at pretty all the venues in the area!

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    Thank you ladies!!! I am just trying to think the best part of where to start. I think it needs to be a full week before as the problems started there and didn't get sorted until 24 hours before the wedding. 

  • Rachel-41Rachel-41 Posts: 18 New bride
    MrsLMT wrote (see post):
    Rachel-41 wrote (see post):

    Can't wait to read this! We drive past your venue when we go to visit ours! 

    Ooh, what venue do you have? I'm intrigued, I looked at pretty all the venues in the area!

    We're getting married at the black mountain barns, they don't do many weddings a year and were quite difficult to find, it's only 2 weeks away!

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    Rachel-41 wrote (see post):
    MrsLMT wrote (see post):
    Rachel-41 wrote (see post):

    Can't wait to read this! We drive past your venue when we go to visit ours! 

    Ooh, what venue do you have? I'm intrigued, I looked at pretty all the venues in the area!

    We're getting married at the black mountain barns, they don't do many weddings a year and were quite difficult to find, it's only 2 weeks away!

    I have heard of the venue. I can't remember why we didn't look at it though! 

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    I can honestly say the final week was awful. It was so stressful, everything was going wrong and it got to the point where I cried. A lot. 

    I know I mentioned the suit saga in my planning thread but I have to explain the suit sage didn't end until the Thursday before the wedding. Even then there were still problems. 

    We had hired our suits from a local company. This company is very well known in the South Wales area, they are always winning wedding awards and were at pretty much every wedding fayre we went to. Ben really wanted this company as there was a branch where he lived. 

    We hired 5 adults and 2 children's navy tail coat with a dove grey double breasted waistcoat. Ben had a blue floral tie with everyone else having a lilac floral tie. A total of 7 suits, we had asked on three occasions for every one to have braces. All of the men were measured in November and December, we were told they only needed to be measured once. The two children needed to be measured twice, the first time in November and the second time exactly four weeks before the wedding. 

    We were told we had to collect the suits on the 22nd March, and if there were any problems we had to inform the store by 10am the following day for replacements to be ordered and delivered the same day. 

    For some reason I always knew the suits were going to be wrong. I had said it for months to my mum, Ben thought I was being pessimistic. 

    The phone call on the 16th March to say the suits were a week early should have set the alarm bells ringing. Especially when I was told three ties were missing, to be delivered by the following Thursday. 

    But the bells didn't start ringing. I sent Ben to pick up the suits when he finished work. 


  • ruthie1979ruthie1979 Posts: 794

    I am so excited to read your report xxxxxx

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    While Ben was collecting the suits I set about printing the venue instructions. For anyone who hasn't thought about venue instructions I really do recommend it. Another lady on this forum emailed me her instructions a few months ago. I used these as a guide for my own. By the time I completed it all it was 12 pages long. Oops! 

    The reason I was printing out the instructions was I had been summoned by the venue for a meeting. We had paid the balance on the previous Monday and I had left the instructions with owner. I was then asked to meet with her a week before the wedding. I wasn't best pleased, I had already met with her four times to discuss the wedding. The last meeting had been in January when we confirmed numbers, sash colours etc. 

    So Ben was collecting the suits, I was printing venue instructions and cooking tea. Oh and oldest daughter Ava was in her school play. Ben walked in, tea was already on the table, we spent ten minutes together before Ava and I walked out the door. 

    Ava had to be at the theatre for 6pm, I had a 7pm meeting and then I had to collect Ava at 10pm. It was going to be a long night. 

    With Ava at the theatre I got to the venue at 6:45pm. Looking at my phone I found four missed calls and a text message from my mum. Never good to see mum ringing and texting that many times. 

    I rang her back. 

    Suit problem number one had just landed. My dads suit was wrong, his trousers were too tight, his jacket was too small and the waistcoat too big. Not a good start.

    She then said Stewart, my brother who was usher, was on his way down to her house with his suit as he wasn't happy. Now at this point I didn't know how bad my brothers suit was, all I knew suit problem two had landed. I shall explain soon how bad it was! 

    I told mum to keep me updated and headed into the venue. 

    I was told the owner was just drying her hair and wouldn't be long. Let me remind you, the owner had called this meeting, not me. And Imwas being kept waiting. 

    As I checked over my notes my mum start to send me photos of my brothers suit. 

    It was disgusting. Not only was the sizing wrong but the trousers were covered in white marks. My brother can normally make a black bag look good but he looked awful. 

    I was seething with anger that the suit company had sent the trousers out like that. That was without the sizing issues. 

    Before I had chance to reply to my mum the owner walked into the bar apologising for keeping me waiting. As she was getting her file together Ben sent me the photo of his suit. 

    He looked like a tramp. Honestly there is no other way to describe it. The suit was huge. 

    Again I did not have the chance to reply to Ben as the owner plonked herself next to me. However, when she asked what we were meeting about it was everything I could do not to scream. 

    However, I managed to keep a lid on my sarcasm. Not the easiest task for me at the best of times. 

    We started going through the instructions. Even now, four weeks later I have no idea why I had to go that night. There was nothing that we hadn't already discussed. While she was talking I could hear my phone as messages were being sent to me. At 8pm I found myself back in the car, and found messages from Ben, Mum and my Dad. I sent the same message to all saying I was heading over to the late night Costa and would ring when I got there. 


  • MrsCToBeeMrsCToBee Posts: 2,942 New bride

    Totally agree about finding disabled friendly wedding venues! My grandad is a wheelchair user and my FIL to be isn't very mobile and lots were just impossible! Even our chosen venue isn't great but he can get to the ceremony area, and it's likely that's as long as he'll stay as he gets very tired.

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    With coffee in hand, my charger plugged in the phone and a cake as a treat I decided to ring Ben first. While I love my now husband (!!!!) there are times when he is clueless. Especially when it comes to clothing. His words were I'm happy with the suit, I have room in it. 

    He wasn't happy when I told him he looked like a tramp in the suit and needed changing, 

    Next up my parents. Dad was quite calm, saying don't panic it can be sorted. Mum on the other hand was her usual stressed self. In all thruthful honesty I needed her to be calm but she was hard work all week. 

    With everyone contacted I set about eating my cake and drinking my now slightly cold coffee. I then headed back to the theatre to collect Ava. Unfortunately for me the headteacher was attending that night and gave a speech at the end. We finally got home at 11pm. 

    So far three suit problems, one tired and stressed bride, one tired junior bridesmaid and a grumpy groom after being told he looked like a tramp. 

    Not bad for the Friday one week before the wedding. 


  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    ruthie1979 wrote (see post):

    I am so excited to read your report xxxxxx

    I hope I do it justice for you x 

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    MrsCToBee wrote (see post):

    Totally agree about finding disabled friendly wedding venues! My grandad is a wheelchair user and my FIL to be isn't very mobile and lots were just impossible! Even our chosen venue isn't great but he can get to the ceremony area, and it's likely that's as long as he'll stay as he gets very tired.

    It's appalling. We found this was the only venue that would accommodate my grandmother. 

  • MrsBeehanMrsBeehan Posts: 378 New bride

    So excited to see your report!! 

    The suit problems sound terrible!! Not what you want a week before. And the venue owner......strange!!

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    MrsBeehan2Bee wrote (see post):

    So excited to see your report!! 

    The suit problems sound terrible!! Not what you want a week before. And the venue owner......strange!!

    Oh our suit saga got worse. I had my bridezilla moment on the Saturday and handed all control of the suits to my dad. That was before suit problem number 4 landed. 

    This was the first problem, we still have sash gate, an ill daughter, a broken car and the Ian Stuart fiasco to get through. There were a lot of tears!!! Prepare to be shocked!! 

  • Ashley72Ashley72 Posts: 1,137 New bride

    So looking forward to reading this report, I recently read through your planning thread on my hols and loved all your DIY! I'm on the edge of my seat now..... sorry to hear you had so many dramas to navigate but you have referenced a husband so I'm relieved to know it must have all worked out somewhat OK!! The tramp comments did make me laugh!! :-)

  • MrsJamesMrsJames Posts: 405 New bride

    Can't wait to read the rest of your thread and hear how it all worked out in the end!

    I followed your planning thread back when I was writing my planning thread and report, and I've been popping back every now and again to check how your planning was going. Can't wait to see how all the DIY bits looked on the day!

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    Saturday 17th March

    Can I just say I hate snow? In all honesty I have never seen so much snow in March. And Saturday 17th March was no different. We had a snow warning for the day and the Sunday. It meant rejigging all of our plans.

    Saturday morning I was booked in to have my hair cut and dyed. To be honest I needed it, the stress was starting to get to me. The normal grey strands of hair were now silver. I was hoping my lovely hairdresser could work miracles. Ben was heading to Abergavenny with my girls to do the dance run and pick up the last bits he needed. He was supposed to drive to Hereford with the suit for the bestman and our pageboy. He didn't get there. 

    Now originally the plan had been to pick up the last few presents and a box/bag for Bens gift. While Sunday we had planned to visit my dads office to do the last few printing jobs. However the snow warning meant I had to abandon my Saturday afternoon and do the printing on my own. 

    So loaded with my laptop, various card, the USB with (what I believed) the printing jobs and my usual hand bag I once again parted ways with Ben. 

    Now I do not know what happened on that Saturday but there was some kind of huge technical issue and no one could use a mobile phone in the Abergavenny area. I struggled in Ebbw Vale with very little mobile phone coverage. Which meant neither of us could contact the suit company that morning. 

    Not that they would hear me in the hair salon! I have been going to my hairdresser for years, she has seen me go on this huge emotional journey and is very happy I have finally found someone. As I was sat there eating my bacon roll (I missed breakfast), everyone was asking my hairdresser what was in the diary for the next few weeks. All the customers were excited when they heard it was my wedding the following week. 

    I hate to say this, but I didn't want to talk about it. The nerves had kicked in and I felt sick. I was quite glad to escape at 12 and head out into the ice and snow. 

    I was a bit concerned about the weather as I left. It was bitterly cold and really slippery. I had only the one message through Facebook off Ben to explain about the mobile signal and was concerned about him getting home with the girls. However, I couldn't get hold of him. 

    With nothing for it I headed to my nans, I had to wait for my dad to drop the keys for his office off as it was open on a Saturday until 1pm. It was lovely to see my nan, she complimented my hair. Gone were the grey/silver strands, I now had my usual chocolate red with extra red thrown in. She was very excited for the wedding, she only ever had two sons and has loved the whole planning process with me. I love spending time with my nan. 

    Dad finally arrived at 1:30pm with the keys and I said goodbye to my nan and head off into the depths of winter once again. 

  • MrsBeehanMrsBeehan Posts: 378 New bride

    Oooo it's like a novel! Looking forward to the next instalment:)

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830
    MrsBeehan2Bee wrote (see post):

    Oooo it's like a novel! Looking forward to the next instalment:)

    Lol, I’m a frustrated writer. I just don’t have the patience to proof read. 

    I‘m normally the one who has to write the nasty letters to companies or parents in work. 

    (My suit letter complaint was fun to write). 

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    1:45pm and I finally let myself into my dads office. My lovely dad is the managing director of an estate agents and I have used his super printer for all of the wedding printing. I am very lucky to have had access to this printer as it has saved us a fortune. 

    I pushed the button to open the shutters and balanced my box with laptop etc and let myself in. My dads office is upstairs so after switching the printer on I headed up there to set up. I needed to use my dads laptop as I haven't connected my laptop to the printer. I tend to use my laptop to work and edit and dads to print. 

    While my dad is the managing director his laptop is a billion years old and he is a nightmare at updating it. This Saturday was such a day when it needed updating. 

    All 37 updates were needed. Wow, just wow dad. How on earth he has managed to get away with not updating his laptop is beyond me. As it appeared I was going to have a little while to wait I decided to go in hunt for some lunch. Luckily there was a Greggs two doors down. Happy days. Grabbing my purse I locked up and grabbed some lunch. 

    Now I remember another lady on here mentioning how you don't have time to eat in the last week and what you do eat is normally on the run. I was no exception to that rule. It was a week before the wedding and I was eating a past and cake from Greggs. And this was without the bacon roll that morning and the cake the night before.

    Don't worry, I didn't have problems with the dress fitting. Stress made sure I lost even more weight. 

    Armed with my supplies I went back to the office. Dads computer was still updating. Hmm..this was going to take longer than I anticipated. 

    I decided to call the suit company. 

    This was my bridezilla moment. And I am not proud of it. 

    Was it the fault of the guy on the other end of the phone? Not really....but his attitude really rubbed me up the wrong way. 

    So when I mentioned the jackets being the wrong size his response to ask if everyone was fastening the jackets correctly made me see red. 

    My response? Well it was. "My brother is 30, my fiance is 35 and my dad is 55. In all truthful honesty if they haven't learnt how to fasten a jacket at this point I would seriously wonder how they have managed to survive life." 

    I didn't give the poor man a chance to reply as I then carried on. 

    "While I can understand fastening jacket may be difficult to some people how do you explain the sizing of my dads jacket? This isn't a case of him not being able to fasten the jacket, it's so small the buttons don't even meet. And my fiance, the groom, no offence his suit is so big..well there is no other way to describe it and please excuse my language, he looks like shovel of sh*t".

    At this point the poor guy spluttered and asked if members of the bridal party could return on Monday to be remeasured. I asked if they were paying for the time lost in work and for the petrol. He didn't reply. I said I thought not and would let everyone one know. 

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    I was absolutely seething after the phone call. At this point I checked my dads laptop and it was restarting. I decided to eat my lunch and drink (another luke warm) coffee. 

    After ten minutes I checked the laptop to find it still restarting. By this time it was 2:30pm and I had printed nothing. It was not going well. And just to make my day better, it was starting to snow. Granted it was only light snow but I hate snow. I have had to shovel my way out of the street twice since Christmas and I didn't want another day of clearing snow. I didn't have time for snow. 

    Feeling down in the dumps I tried to ring my dad. Unfortunately the phone signal was still having problems. I have no idea how long it took me. All I can say my poor dad had an ear bashing when I finally got through to him. 

    First about the suits. Like me, he was very annoyed and promptly said no one was going on Monday and that he would deal with it. He was disgusted with the way I was spoken to. Then he gave me a telling off for swearing but agreed there was no other way to describe the suit saga. 

    Then dad had it in the neck about his computer. Luckily his PA leaves her laptop at the office and he gave me the password for that. 

    Finally I was on a computer. The only problem was me. I had lost all patience and was feeling very stressed. I printed my signs, the last few reserved seating signs and what I believed was the table plan. 

    Ben at this point rang to say he was finally back at the house and should he start tea for the children. I said yes as Ava was once again in the school play that night. 

    Packing up I headed home, feeling really upset and stressed over the suits. Once again I was in the cold winter air. 


  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    3:45pm I walked into my house and promptly burst into tears. Ben, Ava and Molly all looked at me as if I had grown four heads. 

    I am normally the one in control who looks after everyone else. Seeing me have a meltdown was the last thing anyone expected on that Saturday afternoon. 

    Ben quickly sent the girls to the living room and gave me a cuddle. He agreed Dad should take over the suits. 

    With that there was a knock at the door. It was my brother Stew. Him and his wife were going to see Ava in her school play that night and would be leaving in half hour. 

    Ava was fed and ready in that half hour. Along with two paracetamols, she had developed a sore throat. She isn't one to ever complain about being ill, in fact she had only even been sent home once. And that was with chicken pox!!! I put it down to the school play, this was night four, she had been in school every day and had ballet that day as well.She is a very busy young lady! 

    With Ava sent off with my brother and sister in law we started to make a list of things which still needed to be sorted. We still had two suits in the house which we needed to get to our bestman and his son. However, they were in a holiday cottage the other side of Hereford. There was no way we could get there, the wind had picked up and we were now in a Amber warning for snow. Like omg, how much snow was going to land in the next 24 hours? 

    Before we could think about the snow my dad turned up. He wanted a list of problems with the suits. Now Ben had left his dads suit at his house but we hadn't heard if it was ok. Ben text his dad and we started going through everything. Along with all the problems all ready mentioned the braces we had asked for hadn't been delivered either.

    How hard can it be to get a suit order right? Very hard apparently. 

    As we discussed the various issues Ben's phone bleeped with a message. 

    It was his dad. He said he had a lovely grey suit. 

    What????? Grey???? I think my head spun round as if something from a horror film. Ben left the room to call his dad while my poor dad was left to pick me up as I cried...again. 

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    Ben finally came back into the room. He was not a happy bunny. 

    Although this time it wasn't the suit that was the problem. It was his dad. 

    The grey suit comment had been a joke. He hadn't been aware of the developing suit saga. Needless to say Ben had words with his dad over the stupid joke, and to be fair his dad was very apologetic. 

    On a plus point his suit was ok. Yay!!! 

    Dad took the list of suit problems saying he would be calling on Monday morning to sort things out. 

    My little Molly Moo came to give me a cuddle. She is very much a mummy's girl and hates seeing me upset. I honestly have no idea what we had for tea, I just know I drank a bottle of wine.

    Drinking that wine was the best decision, I slept all night.

    One week before the wedding, suit saga was still on going, I had a possible poorly Ava and it was snowing....a lot....again. 

    It could only get better right?

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    So snow landed on Saturday and into Sunday.

    I woke up to this.


    I appreciate it may not look much but once again we had drifts. Granted they weren't 10ft and over but they were 4ft in places. 

    First thought, where was Ava. I had gone to bed silly early the night before after drinking wine. I checked my phone and found a message from my sister in law saying they were home. Phew!!

    Next problem, suits. Ben decided there was no way he was driving to Hereford. Once again he was digging cars out. Always what you need 6 days before the wedding!!!

    I on the other hand was feeling pretty good after my alcohol induced sleep and set about looking at the printing I had done the night before. I framed all the signs except one as I needed a special frame for my stepson for his Here Comes the Bride sign. I then punched the holes and tied the ribbon on the reserved seating signs. Molly came to help with these, she has a collection of off cut ribbon which she been collecting from me. 

    Then I got the table plan out. 

    I let out a cry of frustration. I had only printed the wrong table plan. ARGH!!!!!! I was kicking myself. Of all the stupid things I could do, this was one of them. 

    Ben was amused that I had made the mistake. 

    There was nothing I could do about it that day. I sent dad a message asking if he could reprint the table plan for me in work the next day. He quickly replied yes. Good old dad!

    So I then got the confetti and started bagging it up. I had bought the confetti from Dollz Confetti and I have the say the smell was amazing. Within the hour I had bagged it up ready for the basket. 


  • SpacepuffinSpacepuffin Posts: 664

    More. More. More!

  • MrsK2018MrsK2018 Posts: 84 New bride

    Hey Mrs LMT.Your planning thread has been quite addictive!I dove into it and followed religiously when i joined the site even though i did not comment much due to being busy.I really enjoy your style of writing.You have me on tenterhooks and its filled with suspense I wish you would write all of it in one go.I hope you will make this report very long so we get to enjoy it for as long as we can :)

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