Wednesday 28 August 2013

Real Pearl-Themed Glamorous Barn Wedding: The Reception Details

There's a deliciously warm feeling to this big day. I reckon it's partly down to the lovely cream and gold colour palette, and partly down to the lovely barn reception. I've always loved rustic wedding venues, and barns can be dressed down for a straw bales and bunting-style wedding, or up for a glamorous wedding like this one! Emma and Alistair chose Lains Barn in Oxfordshire for their summer wedding, and used delicate birdcages, vintage pictures frames and orchids in their wedding decorations. You'll want to fill your Pinterest boards with shots of Emma's amazing Justin Alexander wedding gown, her pretty flower girls, their DIY pearl-detail place markers and their hand-stamped sweetie bags. Huge thanks to Kate Gray for her beautiful wedding pictures. I first discovered Kate's creative children's portraits for my baby blog, Before the Baby, so I'm thrilled to now publish her wedding work!

We celebrated our wedding at Lains Barn in Wantage, Oxfordshire on 21st June 2013.

My wedding dress and veil were made by Justin Alexander, my shoes by Karen Millen and my accessories were from Swarovski

Alistair wore a Harrogate suit from Jack Bunneys. Similar to my dress he wanted a simple, contemporary design, that was sophisticated and different from the norm.

We wanted a venue that would provide a relaxed, intimate setting that was great for all ages - e.g. flat for the older party, but private and enclosed for the younger ones. 

Our wedding décor was based on our principle of simple and vintage. We didn't have a particular theme, we just chose were mainly creams and golds.

Our wedding favours were simple - a Ferrero Rocher with a small pack of Love Hearts, which we tied inside a gold silk bag. 

I went to a friend's wedding last year, and they used fake flowers, but we couldn't tell at first, so we decided to use fake flowers as well. This was partly down to cost but also because I loved the idea that I could keep my bouquet for many years to come. Also I only wanted orchids as my wedding flowers, and that would have been very expensive for the amount we used.

The bouquets and decorations were all from Silk Blooms, and they were all very impressive.

Our DIY projects included our table plan - which we made out of vintage photo frames. We also created our name places, and decorated with bird cages. We also created lots of sweet trees for the guests to pick out during the afternoon.

We opted not to spend too much money on our cake {instead we focused more on the venue, food and outfits}, and as we had a friend who got discount at Waitrose we decided to buy their three-tier Chocolate Wedding Cake with orange liqueur.

We hadn't considered buying our wedding cake from Waitrose, but after tasting all their cakes, we thought it was delicious, and also different from most other wedding cakes – a plus for us!

Probably the best decision we made in planning our day was to choose a friend of my cousin, Kate Gray, as our wedding photographer.

After seeing some of Kate's work online we decided to use her as she has a way of capturing “moments” which we hadn’t seen in others pictures. She was great from start to finish. We knew from our pre-wedding shoot that the photos would be good, but when we got the shots back from our wedding day we were blown away!

We only got engaged six months before the big day, so some things were more stressful to organise than others. Luckily my other half did most of the boring bits and left me to choose the prettier parts of the day!

My advice for other brides would be to focus on what's really important to you, before you start planning the day. Anything labeled 'for a wedding' usually attracts a premium, and the cost of the day can get out of hand quite quickly. 

We made a list of things we wanted to be perfect and substituted money from the ones we weren't too bothered about. That way we compromised, but didn't lose sight of what wedding elements were most important to us.

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