A sunny bank holiday wedding report

I got married on Saturday 20th April. I never wrote a planning thread as would have ended up waffling on most of the time but am going to attempt a report thread as I’d love to have something to look back on and read.

We’re currently on minimoon in the New Forest so going to use this as a chance to relax and write everything down. Whilst I do that I’ll leave one photo from our glorious sunny and beautiful day.



  • GinAndBlingGinAndBling Posts: 1,311 New bride
    Yay! Congratulations you look amazing 
    Our planning thread: We're completely winging it.
    Our report: A fun, classic May day in navy and blush
    My weightloss thread: Diet denial! 
  • MrsW2020MrsW2020 Posts: 259 New bride
    Yay, so excited to read this! You look gorgeous!
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride
    Thank you @GinAndBling and @MrsW2020 😊
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The beginning

    I met D the good ole fashioned way - online dating haha. He messaged me and we built a good rapport fairly quickly. This was just before Christmas, we live in Sussex and he was going home to see his family in Yorkshire for Christmas so I had to wait for him to return when we finally met for drinks in a bar a couple of weeks later. We had a great evening, I reluctantly let him give me a lift home given that it was pouring with rain but I wasn’t too sure on getting in a car with a man I had just met. When we pulled up outside my flat, being the awkward person I am, I more or less ran from the car. When I got inside I realised how much I liked him so then texted him straight away, smooth. A few more dates and a couple of weeks later we became official. We lived a good 45 minute car journey apart, I was fed up in my job whereas D had a pretty established career so 7 months after we got together I figured I’d start looking for a job closer to him expecting it to take a while, a week later I’d accepted a job and 8 months later we moved in together. Another 9 months later (17 months after we became official) we went on holiday to Bali for my 30th. D organised a surprise private dinner for us on the beach one night and got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The planning

    First things first we needed to set a date. We had to give ourselves time to save money so decided 2019 would be our year. We also knew we wouldn’t be able to afford peak wedding season so opted for April. We’d been to a friends wedding on Easter Saturday and it seemed ideal with most of our family & friends having a four day weekend. D is a sound engineer in a theatre and knew people would also be free in April to pull in favours. The rest of the planning went pretty smoothly, although I’m incredibly lucky where I made wedding decisions and D did the hard work of turning them into a reality.

  • MrsPope2018MrsPope2018 Posts: 1,340 New bride
    Congratulations MrsPB, you look so happy in that photo!! What a gorgeous day for a wedding 😊☀️
  • MrsCToBeeMrsCToBee Posts: 2,949 New bride
    Congrats, you look amazing and the flowers are stunning!
  • How gorgeous!! Cant wait to read all about it <3
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    Weight loss

    I went dress shopping when I got home from Bali just for fun and it made me realise that I did not want to get married looking the way I did. I’d lost a few stone before I met D from working out with a personal trainer but then gained it all back with the happy relationship weight. With saving for a wedding I couldn’t afford a personal trainer again and my former flat mate had lost a lot of weight at slimming world so I decided to give it a go and it worked. I’ve lost 5 stone over a period of 16 months and am super proud of myself. I’m determined not to be one of those statistics and gain it back. Following a half marathon and Great South run, I have signed up to run the Brighton marathon next year. Here is a photo from my first dress shopping for comparison.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride
    P.S. we do have all our photos back without the watermark now but my signal is not good enough in the middle of the New Forest to download them.

    Thank you for all the nice comments so far.
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The venue

    Neither D or I are religious and we’re lucky that our local registry office is in a beautiful building so that was an easy choice. For the reception, we’d been to a couple of weddings in barns and they’re beautiful and my dream venue but living in the south east, the cost of hire alone was pretty much our entire wedding budget. So we started looking at town/village halls we could hire. Some were ridiculously ugly and still charged a pretty penny and then we viewed Barnham community hall. It was double in price at £1500 hire for the weekend compared to our second favourite but my gut instinct said this was the one. It worked out wonderfully, we had the main hall for dinner and dancing, a second smaller room for the photobooth and doors which led out on to the patio as well as other smaller rooms where the band, photographer and our baby niece got their own space too. I’m really bad at explaining the visual I had for the hall and told D it needed to be pretty, well he didn’t disappoint and the venue looked stunning.  D works as a theatre techie and pulled in many a favour to get the equipment we needed. I’m so grateful not only to him but to our friends and family that gave up their time the day before the wedding to help us set up. 

    I may have to pause in posting there until I get home on Sunday and can download our photos to go with my posts.

  • Cecilia13Cecilia13 Posts: 512 New bride
    Congratulations! You look stunning and the flowers also look gorgeous- I love that vibrant blue ! Congratulations on your weight loss, that's amazing and it really looks lovely. Can't wait to see more pics and hear about your day :)
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride
    I understand now how so many brides don’t finish their wedding reports, I feel like I’ve been sorting through wedding photos all day.

    Anyway to pick up where we left off, here’s photos of the hall we hired and once hubby had finished making it look amazing.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The dress

    Once I’d lost four stone, I decided to go dress shopping on my birthday which was just under a year until our wedding. I didn’t want to spend too much money on a dress I was going to wear for one day so headed to Wed 2 Be in Brighton with my mum. Took in the four dresses I was allowed and fell in love with the third. Tried on the fourth, went back to the third, went for lunch whilst they held it for me and then went back and bought Fabiana. I’m typically a size 10/12 now and had to buy my dress in a 14 proving that dress sizes are ridiculous. I also picked up an underskirt and a belt and spent £1100 in the end, oops. So much for trying not to spend so much money. I decided to go without a veil as had grown my hair long for the wedding and also wanted to show off the back of the dress. I got my dress altered in February by an amazing lady who does it out of her home in Brighton, if anyone is local I’m happy to share her number. I wore Kate Spade Keds with my dress so needed the length taken up and the top half taken in too. I was dreading the cost as my dress has lots of detail and beading but it only cost £100. Not sure what I’m going to do with my dress now but I guess it needs to be dry cleaned so need to get over the cost of that first.

    I love this last photo. It was actually taken by our driver as we stopped off on the way to the reception and it’s the only photo I have where you can see my shoes too.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    Hair and make up

    I contacted a few different hair and make up artists in the area and chose Gemma Fletcher. She was the most reasonable in cost but I also had the best gut feeling with her. After I had booked her I happen to fall in love with a hairstyle she did on another bride that only required a £5 hair vine from eBay so that was sorted. I did my make up trial in February and instructed that I wanted a fairly natural look as I don’t wear too much make up in day to day life and was really happy with what she did. I was also paying for hair and make up for my mum and four bridesmaids so Gemma brought along an assistant and we were actually all ready ahead of schedule so all round extremely happy.

    Here’s my hair just after it was finished. When I get to the photos of the end of the night it looks a right state haha but I’m just taking that as a sign I enjoyed myself.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride


    I very almost did not have any flowers as our budget was tight and I didn’t want to spend money on something that would just die. Hubby insisted that I had flowers and knew someone through work who could do them for us. She came round a couple of times for a chat to decide what kind of bouquets I wanted and I realised I wanted a natural bouquet rather than a perfect round bunch of roses. We confirmed the bridesmaids were in navy so we would have a mix of blue and white flowers. In the end we had five bouquets, six buttonholes and two corsages for £170, bargain! I was so happy with how beautiful the flowers were. I’ve attempted to press a few of the flowers from my bouquet so fingers crossed I can save them.

  • GinAndBlingGinAndBling Posts: 1,311 New bride
    Ahh I love this all so much. The dress looks incredible on you. Are you in a campervan? LOVE your hair, it’s such a romantic princess style. And the flowers are great and such a bargain! 
    Our planning thread: We're completely winging it.
    Our report: A fun, classic May day in navy and blush
    My weightloss thread: Diet denial! 
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride
    Thanks @GinAndBling. We did have a VW camper, will show off some more photos of that soon, I loved it. Hubby is working late tonight so I’m hoping to get more written up.
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride


    Our photographer, Stephen Candy (https://www.stephencandyphotography.co.uk), is not typically a wedding photographer. Again he was someone I’d met through hubby’s work before we were even engaged so when we got engaged it was a bit of a no brainer. He did such a brilliant job and not only do hubby and I love our photos but we got them so quickly too. When we sat down for our wedding breakfast Stephen got to work and gave us our first wedding photo as well as printing others for display. We received our full set about two days after our wedding.

    This was the first photo we received and already on display in our house. It was taken just after our ceremony when hubby and I got five mins together before the big group shots.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride
    I can’t believe we’ve been married two weeks already. I’m going to aim to get this report finished today.

    Getting ready

    As mentioned above, myself and bridesmaids hair and make up were all done ahead of schedule so I waited to put my dress on and then it seemed to be a bit of a last minute rush as I heard my wedding car arrive. In fact we were in such a rush I forgot to even put perfume on so I’m glad I didn’t buy a wedding scent in the end.
    My Mum was the only one with me when I bought my dress and I kept it a secret between us until the night before when I excitedly showed it to my MOH as she also needed to help me get into my dress. After they got me into my dress I walked downstairs to show my dad and bridesmaids and really wished I’d looked at them to take in their reactions but everything I heard was positive. We took some photos indoors and with my car and then it was time to head to the ceremony. My dad and I went in my wedding car and my my drove all my bridesmaids.
    As I got ready at home when I left a lot of my neighbours were out and about. Since the wedding when I’ve bumped into the neighbours they’ve been so lovely congratulating us and telling me how beautiful I looked. 

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The ceremony

    I guess this is the part when my nerves kicked in because all I remember from the journey there is the driver went the long way round and my dad was trying to talk to me but I couldn’t really say much.

    We pulled up outside the registry office and I was pretty much ushered inside to meet with the registrar. As I walked into the building I saw one of the groomsmen at the ceremony room door but was too nervous to look at him and as I walked into the room to meet with the registrar the connecting door to the ceremony room was left open which annoyed me because if anyone was turned around they will have seen me. I’ve no idea if anyone did, I would have thought they will have been too polite to say anything.

    After the meeting I went back into another room where all my bridesmaids and my dad were waiting. We took some more photos and then it was go time. From those photos you can see from the clock in the background that it was 1:05, not bad for a 1pm ceremony I think.

    Choosing the song to walk down the aisle to was one of the hardest decisions I had to make as nothing stood out as an obvious choice. In the end I chose an instrumental version of the song Helpless from the musical Hamilton. I heard the song start and then it stopped. There is some sort of irony when you marry a sound engineer that you have technical difficulties at your wedding, I can laugh about it. Hubby has thrown his groomsmen under the bus and said they wouldn’t allow him to “work” so it was all down to them. They got the music playing again and off my bridesmaids went and then it was my turn. I don’t really enjoy being the centre of attention but to be honest I didn’t even “see” everyone looking at me as I was just grinning at my soon to be husband. When I got to the end of aisle I think my first words to D were ‘aren’t you going to stand next to me?’ I think I ended up shuffling next to him as the photos show we’re not standing in the centre of the aisle. 

    The ceremony went by in a whirl. First we had a reading by my now sister in law called ‘falling in love is like owning a dog’. We have two dogs and as we couldn’t have them at our wedding we tried to include them in other ways. Then the second mishap of the ceremony during the rings. D says his bit and puts my ring on and then I pick up D’s ring and he gave me the wrong hand. He said he was nervous and mind went blank even though I pointed out he had just put my ring on my left hand. Looking back I really wish I had just taken charge and grabbed his left hand but I was also nervous and just went with it. It’s just going to be one of those funny stories we look back on. 

    It was then time for signing the registrar. We had our two mums as witnesses for this so we have their names on our marriage certificate too. During this we had picked three songs by Paramore, Fleetwood Mac and Queen but instead what was supposed to be our walking out song You Make my Dreams by Hall & Oates started playing. After signing the registrar we had our second reading by D’s grandad who did Yes I’ll Marry you my Dear. I was given the marriage certificate and we ended up walking out to Crazy Little thing Called Love which actually I don’t mind. 

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    These have uploaded in a weird order and I can’t work out why.
  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    After the ceremony

    The registry office has a back door leading out to the gardens which are available for photos after ceremonies. My idea was D and I would do a greeting line as the guests went out to the gardens, especially as the bride doesn’t get to see anyone until post ceremony. Instead D and I were ushered into this room for 5 mins alone whilst our guests walked around to the gardens. The only plus side to this was I could grab a desperately needed cup of water.

    We wanted to do photos with the registry office in the background as we think it’s a beautiful building but the photographer pointed out the light wouldn’t work. Luckily the alternative was our beautiful town park in the background. Whilst we waited for everyone to make their way round to the gardens, D and I took lots of photos together and we then did all the usual group shots. As we couldn’t do the greeting line the photos became a bit of a blur of our guests saying hello to me and congratulating us which meant I felt like I wasn’t properly thanking people for coming. Especially in the instance when I got a moment to say hello to an aunt I hadn’t seen in years and was then quickly ushered away.

    Having that desperately needed cup of water.

    I’m so glad the weather was so beautiful so we could get these phots. Seeing the gorgeous blue sky in the photos makes me so happy. The first photo where I’m standing on the pillar seems a bit random but my dress looks pretty.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The wedding car

    When we did the group photos we started off with the shots of everyone and slowly whittled our way down so guests could start heading to the reception which was 40 mins away. Then it was time for D and I to head there. Our wedding car was a VW camper which was not only beautiful but also supplied by the husband of our caterer completely free of charge. Our driver took the scenic route so we could enjoy the ride and ensure our guests got to the reception before us but we were still running so on schedule that I was worried we’d get there too early so we stopped off.  We enjoyed the prosecco supplied in the van and also scoffed a sandwich my MOH partner had got us to stop the prosecco from going to our heads. It also meant we could snap this photo which I adore.

    Once we got to the reception our driver went straight past the entrance haha so a quick u turn and then we were pulling up outside. I won’t bore you with photos of our guests prior to this but I love how they’re all in sunglasses showing yet again what beautiful weather we lucked out with. We arrived to a confetti welcome, initially the venue weren’t going to let us do this but hubby sweet talked them into it and I’m so glad they did as I love our confetti photos. We were ushered in and straight to the bar where we had a glass of pimms that we were serving as welcome drinks.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The reception begins

    The next hour or so was a blur of saying hello to our guests. The ceremony was almost entirely family due to the size of the venue so now was a chance to welcome all our friends. Other brides on here have put it in better words than me but it really does leave you all warm and fuzzy being surrounded by people who love you. Of course I was super happy to see all our friends but shout out to our friend who was heavily pregnant and overdue. She couldn’t rsvp due to not knowing when baby would arrive, unfortunately a couple of D’s relatives were unable to make it last minute as they are elderly and unwell but it did mean fortunately our pregnant friend and husband could stay and celebrate with us. She did actually end up having her baby the next day so the excitement of our wedding must have done it 😉

    Also my MOH earned her title here too. Firstly she made me the Ikea bag for toilet trips. If your dress has a train I would recommend, it’s just one of the blue bags with holes cut in the bottom for your legs so you just step in and pull it up, it holds your dress up for you. With that and sitting on the toilet backwards, toilet trips were a breeze haha. Secondly I’d noticed doing the rounds one of my friends who didn’t know any other guests was stood on her own a lot so I asked MOH to keep her company as she wasn’t local and had made the effort to get here so didn’t want her having a rubbish time by herself. I think my friend then had her ear talked off for the rest of the night haha but better than spending a wedding al by yourself.

    After an hour or so of speaking to everyone it was then time to sit down for our wedding breakfast.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride
    edited May 2019

    Wedding breakfast

    Our amazing caterer was Chic n Cheerful (http://www.chicncheerful.co.uk). When planning our wedding we knew we couldn’t afford a full sit down three course meal so we opted for afternoon tea. We did a tasting when Diane who runs the business came over to our house and served the afternoon tea which was delicious so we were sold. As previously mentioned they also let us use their VW camper free of charge but not only that the 100s of emails that were exchanged along the way were promptly responded to and made us feel we were in good hands. They also gave us the plates we ate our meal off as a wedding present so we have the China of the first meal we ate as a married couple. I cannot explain just how much they were our best supplier we had and I cannot recommend them enough. I think D and I will have to throw an anniversary party next year so we can use them again.

    Anyway back to the wedding. D’s best man announced us into the main hall and we took our seats at the top table. I think D and I had it easy in that we both have just the two parents each so the top table was the six of us. Coffee, tea and elderflower cordial were served with the meal along with the prosecco we bought ourselves. We ordered through majestic wines who paid our Euro tunnel fare and we collected & paid for the prosecco in Calais. Would recommend others do this but not sure how much longer it’ll be possible with this Brexit bollocks. For our afternoon tea we chose coronation chicken sandwiches, prawn mayo sandwiches, sausage rolls and cheese & ham mini quiches. For afternoon tea cake we had carrot cake, lemon drizzle and the best triple chocolate brownies I’ve ever had in my life. If that weren’t enough there was also fruit and plain scones were raspberry jam and clotted cream. Our veggie and guests with allergies were also served their own plate of food so no cross contamination worries. As a wedding favour we gave all our guests a creme egg each on their plate too since it was Easter Saturday.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    The speeches

    After the food came the speeches. For the toasting drink we served another sparkling wine that had a sentimental meaning to us. D’s aunt lives in the south of France and we went and stayed with her for our first holiday together. It was there we enjoyed this sparkling wine. Of course it’s also super cheap to buy there and luckily his aunt was driving over to the UK before the wedding so we paid them and they bought lots of bottles over to be served as the toasting wine.

    My Dad’s speech came first. My family are not fans of public speaking so I was expecting him to thank everyone and that be that. Instead he told a few embarrassing stories about me as a child and said some really lovely things and I’m super proud of what he did.

    My husband’s speech came next. His was long haha and as I told him he was not allowed to do anything techie during the wedding he decided to put a few techie things into his speech. I definitely thought his speech would make me cry but I guess I was on too much of a high trying to take the whole day in still. Instead he managed to make almost everyone else cry and did a wonderful job.

    Lastly the best man’s speech. Honestly I can’t remember much of what was said, not because it wasn’t good but it just seems so long ago now. I think even hubby managed to avoid being roasted and just got a nice speech about him.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    After the speeches there was time for more mingling as our amazing caterers had even agreed to turn the main hall around for us. Once again I want to say how lucky we got with the beautiful weather as it meant we could make full use of the patio area and the garden games that our caterer supplied.

    A lot of hubby’s friends have been getting married recently so the wedding supplies have been doing the rounds between couples including the log rounds which were used in the centre pieces seen in earlier photos. Another thing we were able to use was the homemade photobooth, we have got some hilarious photos from that.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    Our wedding cake was made by our talented friend. The bottom tier was chocolate, the middle red velvet and the top was Victoria sponge all covered in proper icing instead of buttercream and it was of course delicious. Our cake toppers were a model of our dogs and I’m super impressed with how she did Kiwi as she’s almost patterned like a tabby cat so not easy to do. I need to look up ways to preserve them.

     After the hall turn around it was time to cut the cake and then onto the first dance.

    We had a band in the evening called No Talent Required. D works their gigs as sound techie so once again was a fairly easy choice. For our first dance we went with This Will Be by Natalie Cole. I wanted a more upbeat song and it was a good fit for our band too. Halfway through the song I grabbed my dad and D grabbed his mum and we had a dance with them too.

  • MrsPB2019MrsPB2019 Posts: 815 New bride

    After that it was pretty much time to dance the night away. The band did two 1 hour sets and the break in the middle was used to serve the hog roast we had as evening food which went down well.

    Two funny things that happened in the evening, I was dancing with D’s cousins wife when she managed to punch me in the face. She was so apologetic and I had to keep reassuring her I was fine. Then later on in the evening I went to grab D to come dance with me and stood on the train of my dress and ended up on the floor and now I understand why women have their dress bustled hah. 

    I love that first photo as it was completely natural and I had no idea it wasn’t being taken and the second just shows the state my hair ended up haha.

    It’s such a cliche but I truly did have the best day of my life.

    I think that covers everything but if there is anything anyone else wants to know then I’m happy to answer questions.

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