Real outdoor wedding
Marquee wedding in Oxfordshire with lots of personal touches
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Tiff and Al got married in a traditional village church in Oxfordshire, followed by a marquee wedding in a garden. This beautiful wedding had lots of personal touches that were made by the bride, her mum and friends and family, creating a lovely personal feel. Al is Australian and wanted his friends and family to come to a very traditional English wedding so that's the theme they chose, with a hint of vintage.
Tiff's dress was designed by herself and her mum. Made entirely from French Chantilly lace with silk satin straps and detailing. The dress had a cross over sweetheart neckline, a low back and a 1.5m train. The veil was also made by the mother of the bride, designed to fall just short of the train so that the beautiful lace edging could be seen easily.
"I did try on some dresses but couldn't find exactly what I was looking for. When I found one dress that was similar to what I had in mind, a picture in a magazine and some dodgy sketches my mum finally had a pretty good idea of what I was after. Lots of people said we were brave but I completely trusted my mum - she's a fantastic seamstress and never tries to force her opinions on you. I got my absolutely perfect dress, made with stunning high quality fabric made to measure for me. And all for about a tenth of the cost of the couture wedding dress. Thank goodness I've got such a talented Mum!"
Fabric came from Joel and Son Fabrics, London
Following in her creative Mum's footsteps Tiff designed her own hair piece using intricate beading to create a vintage style piece.
She now sells these and similar items at:
"I guess some people might say I'm fussy but once I've got an image in my head of what I want I won't settle for anything else! I couldn't find a hair accessory that I liked so I decided to try and make one with lace and beading. I was really pleased with the final result which I knew was completely individual to me"
The flowers in the Church were absolutely stunning and created by volunteers from the Church (the bridal party provided the flowers). "We couldn't believe how talented these ladies were and how much effort they put into transforming the Church."
The Bay trees with added flowers were also made - "They're actually not real bay trees - but bay leaves and flowers put into a reservoir with a stick with a ribbon for the 'trunk' Shhhhh don't tell anyone though!"
The bridesmaids wore full length champagne gowns in satin. These were also designed and made by the mother of the bride. The bridesmaids were given a selection of styles to pick from and then each dress was made to measure.
The flower girl's dress was off white satin 50s style dress with a lavender sash and the page boy wore a lavender waistcoat and bow tie - all made by the mother of the bride!
The ushers wore a traditional morning suit, lavender ties and natural coloured waistcoast.
The bouquets of flowers were made by a local florist, Christine Pearce - and included cream roses, tiny purple asters, freesias, stephanotis and some greenery.
The Church ceremony was followed by a relaxed garden reception with a cream tea and pimms.
"I just love that the children were able to run and play games and no one had to worry about entertaining them. Their parents got a break whilst they had a great time playing hide and seek, tag and other favourites! By the time the wedding breakfast was served they had used up all their excess energy!"
Catering was provided by a local caterer- Patricia Gonzalez
Jazz / swing band - Cate Cody and the Jazzcats
"So many people commented on the Jazz band we had playing the afternoon and during the wedding breakfast - it really added to the party feel to have music playing in the afternoon. The band were completely professional, played fantastic music and Cate has a truly beautiful voice. I feel really lucky that there were able to play at our wedding."
The Marquee was provided by Henman Marquees: www.henmanmarquees.com. The garden was on three levels and they managed to build a marquee across three levels, incorporating an outdoor flower bed, building a stage for the band, a bar area, seating 100 guests (comfortably), a covered walkway and entrance space and two large tents for the afternoon drinks and Jazz band. They also included a starlit dance floor, chandeliers and real glass windows.
They also hired loos and because it was an October wedding a generator to provide power for the heaters inside the marquee. These were all provided and set up by Henmans.
"Having thought there would never be enough space on level ground to cater for a marquee this just shows what a bit of creative thinking and a brilliant marquee company can achieve! They worked tirelessly for days to create my perfect venue - and including the flower bed inside the marquee was such a good idea, it added a focal point and meant we could add more colour into the marquee. I absolutely loved it! The only downside of a marquee - finding my dad on the morning of the wedding getting rid of a giant molehill that had pushed some of the carpet up overnight! Easily fixed but not something you plan for!"
Everybody's name place setting was designed as a bookmark. The men had a 1930s vintage car and the ladies a 1930s lady with beading attached. These were all handmade by the mother of the bride and the bride. Favours were a little lavender bag for the ladies and a jar of traditional sweets for the men and children.
The table decorations were all done by, you guessed it, the bride and mother of the bride! Tiff wanted vintage style cut glass and candles with little bunches of flowers. The cut glass candlesticks and vases / glasses were all found in charity shops. The flowers were arranged by Tiff, and included freesias, chrysanthemums, mimosa (Australia's national flower also known as "wattle"), lavender and gypsophila.
"I'm not a huge fan of large central table decorations as it can cut the table in half if you can't see / talk to people on the other side so I decided that I wanted several little pieces instead. When the candles were all lit in the evening it created a really pretty effect throughout the marquee with the candlelight catching the cut glass."
The wedding cake was a traditional three tier fruit cake with absolutely stunning flower decorations to match the flowers throughout the day and lace edging - to reflect the lace in the dress.
It was made by Tiff's Auntie - who has always been an excellent cake maker. There's some serious talent in this family!
"The evening finished with a great (very loud) band and some questionable dancing! Everyone had a great time and if you're after a band who will get everyone on the dance floor and provide entertainment as well as playing music I cannot fault the The Indie Killers they were fantastic! Even my mum gave them a case of beer because they were so polite!"
All photos were kindly taken by Tiff's brother's friend who is a professional photographer.
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