A Personal Countryside Wedding July 2018- The Report

Hey all!

I abandoned my planning thread as my readership was dwindling, so I've come back to try with my wedding report! Almost a year down the line (how time has flown!), everything is well and we are soon to expand our family by adopting a feline baby to call our own.

We're both loving married life, and I can't wait to tell you all about our journey.


  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    edited April 2019

    My husband and I don’t remember exactly how old we were when we met, as we went to the same
    high-school. I ‘asked him out’ on 24th July 2008, when we were 15 years old, and the rest is history.
    Although I hoped that it would be a long term relationship, of course many people doubted our commitment.

    He proposed when we were 16, a shock to many, but our families were fine with it. We had no intention of marrying until we were 18 and had finished our education, but both knew we wanted to
    spend the rest of our lives together. We went through college and university together, and saw my
    now sister-in-law get married to her childhood sweetheart. That’s when we thought more seriously
    about setting a date. We bit the bullet and booked for Saturday 14th July 2018. We had thought about getting married on our 10th anniversary, but this wasn’t practical for a few reasons! So the
    mammoth task began to plan our wedding, from over 100 miles away in London.

    I really enjoyed planning the wedding, and there were very few times (thankfully) where I felt stressed about it (ahem…RSVP’s and table plan). So now we will skip forward to the week of!

    Weds 11th July

    This is where things started to get a lot more busy. In the morning I went to the dress shop to pick up my finished dress. I had popped down to try it on a couple of times with the seamstress before then so wasn’t worried. She just had to finish my bustle loop, so I wasn't worried. I was picked up by my mother-in-law to avoid me having to walk it across town, and them my husband and I spent the day babysitting our toddler nephew. Although we see him as much as we can, we were keen to spend lots of time with him leading up to the wedding to make him more comfortable on the day. In the evening I went back to my mum’s to finish tying ribbons onto some jars for the church flowers, whilst my husband watched the World Cup at his mum's house. Whilst he was pleased he wouldn’t miss England being in the semi-final while we were on an plane, it did mean that England would be playing for 3rd place on our wedding day instead. Sods law!
  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Just a quick plug to our suppliers:

    Reception venue: Sprowston Manor Hotel, Norwich (was Marriott at the time)
    Dress, veil and tiara: Maisie May, North Walsham
    Photography: The Photography Team, Norwich
    Bouquets/Buttonholes/Reception flowers: Elizabeth's, Norwich
    Grooms Suit: Slater's, Norwich
    Car: Silverline Limousines, Norwich
    DJ: Connections Entertainments, Norwich
    Hair: Katrina James Hair Studio, Wroxham

    The cake was made by an old school friend of mine, and the bridesmaids by my talented sister-in-law. Make up was by me!
  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Thursday 12th July

    So this morning we were up bright and early for our rehearsal. It felt very odd being in the church for
    this, as it was always my dream to get married in this church. There was so much to remember, it
    was a bit overwhelming! I was worried I’d say the wrong thing, not speak loud enough (it was a huge church!), or do something wrong with my hands. But the vicar was lovely, and throughout the whole  process was really understanding and happy to give us any reminders we might need. It was then time to say goodbye to my bridesmaids and dash up to our venue to take all of our decorations, gifts etc. Again it was quite weird, as it meant that after that day a lot of things were out of my hands! As my coordinator was due to be on leave the day of our wedding, we met the man who would be coordinating the day. We were so happy with his organisation and professionalism, he did a great job of ensuring he had everything where it needed to be when we arrived. Then it was time to say goodbye to my future husband! It didn’t feel emotional as such, but very exciting! The final wedding related thing I wanted to do tonight was glue some flowers on the jar ribbons for the church, so I did that and went to bed, looking forward to my last day of freedom tomorrow!
  • Cecilia13Cecilia13 Posts: 512 New bride
    edited April 2019
    Yay congratulations for a year ago. Can't wait to see your pics  and hear more about your day!
  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Cecilia13 said:
    Yay congratulations for a year ago. Can't wait to see your pics  and hear more about your day!
    Thanks Cecilia, I've been procrastinating by looking at your planning thread today! Going to post another update now. Photos to come!
  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Friday 13th July

    We had such a great day on Friday, but there was also one of the most stressful moments of the
    whole planning process. About a week prior my mum had ordered some bespoke petal confetti and confetti cones from a reputable online company. It hadn’t arrived, and my sister and I both went down to the depot to check. Both myself and my mum spoke to the company to work out what to do, and they suggested re-shipping with guaranteed delivery on the morning of the wedding, as it had obviously got lost in the post. I didn’t really fancy waiting for a delivery on the morning of the wedding, especially as our post usually doesn’t arrive in our village till late afternoon, and we have no shops to fall back on! So reluctantly we decided to request a refund, and mum had to raid Card Factory for whatever confetti they had left.

    We dropped the flower jars over to the church, where the ladies had just arrived to start arranging. The main event of today was getting my nails done with my mum and bridesmaids. It was quite entertaining, and one of my sister-in-law’s dropped all of the nail swatches on the floor! Not sure if they’ll let us back there in a hurry! I chose a lovely dusky lilac colour with a little bit of silver glitter on the tips. It turned out really well. It was my first time having Shellac, and it was great to not worry about chipping my nails. The shame was that it took my nails months to recover.

    Afterwards we went for an afternoon tea at a local tea-room (with my dad as a tag-along!). What a treat that was, we were all stuffed, and my sister-in-law had to take some leftovers for her husband and toddler. The owners of the tea-room were lovely and arranged beautiful rolls and cakes on cake stands, and decorated the table with confetti and a balloon. It was like a second hen party! After lots of fun, mum and I headed back home to take a look at the church flowers (which were beautiful!). It felt so odd to walk in there knowing that the next time, I will be walking down the aisle with all my friends and family.

    This is the sight we were greeted with when we checked in to see the finished result the night before the wedding. Beautiful! We really lucked out, as they were done by two parishioners who do it as a hobby. We saw some photos of their work before we confirmed, we gave them a brief, and we simply reimbursed them for the wholesale flowers. They refused any personal payment, so we made a donation to the church as well.

    All the flowers as we dropped off the vases. This was very exciting to see!

    Mum and I went home for some dinner and made a last—ditch effort to pamper ourselves with face-masks. And my cat was itching for me to paint her nails, as she was very jealous of my pedicure!

  • GinAndBlingGinAndBling Posts: 1,311 New bride
    Your cat is adorable!! Loving your report so far. 
    Our planning thread: We're completely winging it.
    Our report: A fun, classic May day in navy and blush
    My weightloss thread: Diet denial! 
  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Your cat is adorable!! Loving your report so far. 
    Thank you, she's such a sweetie isn't she! She was a semi-feral we rescued a few years ago. She has come on leaps and bounds!

    Glad you're enjoying the report also, it's another nice way to document the day!
  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Our Wedding Day!

    I woke up at about 7.30am, after getting a lot more sleep than I expected. I was really relieved about that, as I usually sleep really badly, and wanted to enjoy the day as much as possible. I got a good morning text from my H2B, which was really nice to see, and really got me excited! We had decided prior to the day that we were allowed to text each other, as we're not superstitious. But there was no way we wanted to see each other before I walked down the aisle. I opened the presents from my H2B, and he opened his over at our reception venue. He got me a beautiful cotton night shirt hand-stitched with the words 'Mrs Piper', a wooden engraved memory box and a print. All very thoughtful gifts, which I still treasure to this day. I then went downstairs to have cuppa and a pain-au-chocolat with mum before we headed off to the hairdresser. I remembered to wear a button down top, which was a relief as my hairdresser threatened to cut my top off me if I forgot! I have been going to the same hairdressers since I was a very small child, and even now I live in London I still travel home to get my hair done! Because of this we have a great relationship with our hairdressers, and I was greeted with this when we arrived...

    How sweet! The salon was empty when we arrived, as most of the staff were working on my mum and I, and they welcomed us with a glass of fizz, and even got my H2B and I a thoughtful card and gift. That was so lovely of them, I do wonder if they felt a bit sorry for my H2B as he used to wait for me to get my hair done when I was a teenager (they always said he was very good!), so maybe that's why we got a gift :p .

    We had a giggle and my step-dad confirmed the flowers had arrived at home, which was also a relief. A couple more customers started to arrive in the salon by this time, which was quite nice as it helped ease me into the attention I would be getting later on in the day. About an hour and a half later we were back in the car, trying not to squish my hair. I sent my work colleagues a whatsapp message with a picture of me in the salon, as unfortunately due to the size and intimacy of my office, I had to invite all or none really, especially as it wasn't in London. It was nice to involve them in some way. The car journey was also a good chance to check my Facebook, as I had loads of notifications from family and friends wishing me well and saying how excited they were, again this helped to ramp up my excitement!

     I don't actually have a close up picture of the back of my hair on the day (doh!), so we will have to make do with a slightly frizzy picture from my trial. I absolutely love the hair pins! Thank you Accessorize 70% off sale! We knew from our trial runs that we wanted a bit more volume to my hair, and more curl. So on the day we used a LOT more Elnett and we curled it with straighteners. You will see this on pictures later.

  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride
    Sorry for the late update all, I've been very distracted over the last few weeks by work and various family events. So without further ado, we can start on my very (professional) photo- heavy report of the day!

    After arriving home my bridesmaids arrived and we had a very light lunch of sandwiches. My sister-in-law brought along her nephew for a cheese sandwich to keep him full until the wedding breakfast, and he managed to say my name for the first time, which was so special! I made a start on my make-up and I got a call to say our photographers were running a little late due to unexpected traffic. We didn't mind as it was only for prep, and they offered to stay later in the evening as an apology. They arrived in time for me to put on my dress and accessories, and then one of the photographers went off to take photos of my husband in the church before I arrived. It was really handy that my mum lives so close to the church, we could have even walked! But as we had the car for the whole day it seemed silly not to use it!

    They took some lovely photos of some of the details of the day, including a spare invitation we made so we could keep it in our memory box.

    I adored these shoes. I went in a number of different shops to find something I liked, and although I found some lovely shoes, many of them were too tall for me. I'm not used to wearing heels, and my husband and I are the same height. Top top it off, i'm a size 8, which limits me a bit! These Irregular Choice shoes were so fabulous, and pretty comfy! Also they doubled up as my something blue!

    I had this lovely charm made for my bouquet, containing a photo of my Nana and Grandad on their wedding day. They are both no longer with us, but they would have loved to have seen me get married, so I had them with me in this way. The brooch was my something borrowed, an Opal and gold pin that was made from one of my great-grandmothers earrings.

    I still adore my bouquet. I knew I wanted something hand tied, as I don't like the more 'traditional' bouquets. Purple and grey were our wedding colours, so I did some research online to find what sort of flowers I would like. I then asked my florist to work around this brief. I've never seen anything like it anywhere else. I collected all the lavender after, and have dried it. I also filled a glass locket my mum got me with some dried petals.

    Putting on my dress was quite a smooth process. My sister-in-law came along to all of my fittings, and practiced putting on my dress, and she taught my sister on the day.

    My beautiful bridesmaids. On the left is my sister, and my two sister-in-laws. The sister-in-law to the far right made the bridesmaids dresses. We designed them together, looking at loads of patterns, photos, making trial dresses etc. We originally wanted a darker purple, like Aubergine, but finding the fabric was a nightmare! I let them have whatever hair/shoes/make-up/nails they wanted. As long as they felt comfortable that was all that mattered to me!

    Last minute I remembered the jewellery I had bought my bridesmaids! We almost forgot!

    By this point I was extremely excited. I started to feel the nerves when I got out of the car, my legs were a bit shaky, but I knew I just wanted to get in there and get married!

    Just to the left you can see one of my ushers along with his son (now my nephew). He was still very little so he was kind of like a junior usher. Apparently he was having a great time helping to pile the Order of Service booklets into a separate pile for Daddy. On the right is my cousin, who was also an usher. 
    The vicar was great from the word go, he came out to see us and remind us of what we were doing. He assured me that my husband-to-be was there too, which was a relief.

    This was such a lovely moment. I still remember the moment that Pachabel's Canon started up. As soon as I turned down the aisle, I saw lots of smiling faces, and I couldn't help but smile back at them. My husband looked back at me quite late, but I was happy with this as it enabled me to focus on everything else that was going on around me.

    The church has a balcony at the back, which was perfect for some of these aerial shots. I love them, as it fits in a lot more detail.

    The lighting in the church can be really dramatic, and i'm so glad this came out on camera too. Our photographers said that it seemed as though the light was just on us. 

    These are our beautiful Order of Service's, designed and printed by my husband (with my guidance of course!).

  • Lauren320Lauren320 Posts: 62 New bride

    We had a couple of lovely readings, by my sister and one of my sisters in law. My sister read Corinthians I, and we also had an excerpt from Les Miserables.

    “The future belongs to hearts even more than it does to minds. Love, that is the only thing that can occupy and fill eternity. In the infinite, the inexhaustible is requisite.
    Love participates of the soul itself. It is of the same nature. Like it, it is the divine spark; like it, it is incorruptible, indivisible, imperishable. It is a point of fire that exists within us, which is immortal and infinite, which nothing can confine, and which nothing can extinguish. We feel it burning even to the very marrow of our bones, and we see it beaming in the very depths of heaven…
    What a grand thing it is to be loved! What a far grander thing it is to love! The heart becomes heroic, by dint of passion. It is no longer composed of anything but what is pure; it no longer rests on anything that is not elevated and great. An unworthy thought can no more germinate in it, than a nettle on a glacier. The serene and lofty soul, inaccessible to vulgar passions and emotions, dominating the clouds and the shades of this world, its follies, its lies, its hatreds, its vanities, its miseries, inhabits the blue of heaven, and no longer feels anything but profound and subterranean shocks of destiny, as the crests of mountains feel the shocks of earthquake.
    If there did not exist some one who loved, the sun would become extinct.” 

    We decided to break with tradition and have four witnesses. We so we had the mum's and our surviving grandmothers. This was quite nice as it was balanced on both sides.

    Then it was time for the confetti throw. It was so hot that day, as you can tell from the colour of the grass! I have to admit that this wasn't the most fun part of the day, normal confetti is fine, but there were definitely some dried rose buds thrown at me. 

    While we gave our guests a head-start to get to our reception venue, we went back into the church for a photo-shoot, and to let it all sink in. I love these shots a lot. They were natural, as the photographers asked us to just chat among ourselves and do whatever we wanted.

    Before we went off to the venue ourselves, we had a bit of bubbly. Why not! Our driver (Chris) was really great, and made sure we didn't feel at all rushed. I have a number of photos of this part of the day, but this is my favorite, because if you look closely you can see the bottle cork in the air! On the way to the venue we went past another wedding car from our driver's fleet, this was quite nice and it meant we got to wave to the other couple in the back of the car. We were given a choice of route, and we took the scenic route as it meant going down roads that were nicer to look at. As it was such a nice day we risked it with the top down. Although it got a little breezy I didn't mind.It's not every day you can drive with the top down in this country! We will resume shortly with our arrival at Sprowston Manor.
  • Wow it all looks so lovely! I’ve only just come across your thread, I do hope you come back and tell us about the rest of your day!
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