{Wedding Wednesday} A Country Love, Karen & Mark

Yes, it’s that time of the week again, my lovelies. One step closer to the weekend and another Wedding Wednesday, to fuel your creativity and inspire each and every one of you.

This week, we are delighted to be featuring the nuptials of Karen and Mark, who were married at Dove Barn, Suffolk.  Photography is by the incredibly talented, Mark Ammon (you can check his website out here)… There are so many elements of this wedding that I love: Karen’s beautifully fitted, lace dress, the bicycle and those flowers – delightful! Now, enough of me and over to our blushing bride, Karen… Enjoy! (ps. there is even a promo video for the wedding at the end of the blog!)

Tell us about the proposal; was it expected, discussed or entirely spontaneous?

Proposal wasn’t expected at the time, but in retrospect should have been relatively expected as we had been together for nearly 9 years. Mark took me to Bruge for the weekend for my birthday and spoiled me nice food and wine and then on the Saturday afternoon took me for a walk and proposed underneath a windmill with an engagement ring which had been handed down to him from his family. We started planning immediately and on and off and we decided to wait 18 months for the following summer. A We both agreed on a non-church wedding and something in the country, we both fell in love with the Barn that we chose to have our wedding at.

Tell us a bit more about your day; was it a big or intimate wedding?

The day started with the bridal party walking down the lane to the barn and the groomsmen arriving in a vintage car. We had an ice cream bike for guests in the barn grounds instead of canapés and my Dad made the most amazing 3-tiered wedding cake. Marks Dad wrote us a poem especially for our day and read it out during the speeches. In the evening we had a fabulous band and fish finger sandwiches – everybody got very drunk and had a fabulous time.

Karen and Mark small-2

Our photographers were great. We were quite nervous about the photos, we really weren’t looking forward to having our pictures taken all day at all. Mark and his team were really chilled out – even from the point that they didn’t take a deposit from us to secure the booking and offered to meet us half way to discuss our requirements once we booked as we had to travel from London. When we met in person they showed us examples of the type of shots they took and everything was atmospheric and natural and relaxed, which was exactly what we wanted. They had also worked on a number of vintage weddings and were good at shooting the style. On the day, despite my self-conscious and terrible attempts to pose nicely we all had a good laugh and they never rushed us or made us feel under pressure, but we got all the shots we needed and we’re really pleased with the results.

Karen and Mark small-3

How did you know that your wedding dress was ‘the one’?

This was another part of the wedding planning that I was dreading. I was worried about trailing around a million dress shops with unfriendly staff who made you feel really pressurised. I had an idea of the style I wanted, which was lace, but I wasn’t I do have a habit of liking things that don’t always suit me – everything looks great on the model right? In reality what happened was my maid of honour booked in a number of visits to dress shops in her home time when I was visiting one weekend and we decided to go just for fun with no intention of actually properly looking. The first shop we went to was a wonderful boutique wedding shopping with a lovely lady who owned it who helped us pick out as many dresses as we wanted to try on. She encouraged me to try on styles and cuts that I wouldn’t necessarily have thought of, whilst listening to what I wanted. Despite my doubts, the three of us all had ‘that moment’ and it was with the second dress I tried on. Every other dress was judged against that one and nothing else came up to the mark – even the more expensive ones

 I’m a country girl (despite living in London now and that was why we chose our location. Walking down the lane come rain or shine was really important to me and the pictures were fantastic, although the photographers did have to work really hard to get these shots. The one thing Mark had shown an interest in was the vintage cars at the wedding fairs so I booked one for a surprise for him and his bestmen and him arrived at the wedding in style.

We tried to personalise the ceremony with our own readings and music – one of our readings was from the film ‘The Wedding Singer – I want to Grow Old with You’ and we walked out to ‘Are you gonna be my Girl’ by Jet which had everybody laughing.

We had an ice cream tricycle instead of canapés with our favourite ice cream flavours, we also had jelly for dessert (my obsession) and fish finger sandwiches for the evening buffet.  Our table plan was designed around the theme of the number of years we had been together (which conveniently was nearly the right number of tables we had). Each table was named after a year we were together and included a picture of us from that year – this was quite funny looking back at pictures 10 years old. We hung each table plan in a photo frame on the wall for guests to see where they were sitting. The top table was photos of the two of us as babies.

During the evening reception, when the photographers had left us we bought an old polaroid camera and got our bridesmaids and groomsmen to take silly pictures of people (a lot of these ended up being taken in the toilet) and then these were hung on a line with wooden pegs in the barn for guests to look at.

Our guest book was really easy. I hired an old suit case and printed from the internet a number of postcards with different safari animals on them (we had asks guests to contribute to our honeymoon fund which was a safari) and guests wrote on them and put them in the suitcase. We also borrowed a beautiful old postbox from one of our friends for guest to put wedding cards in – this postbox has featured in four of our friendship groups weddings now and has become a nice tradition. For favours, I hand made the name places for each guest on luggage tags and created the favours which included a different charity badge for each guest and a handwritten message. My husband felt that favours were a waste of time and unneccessary expense and I agreed, so we decided that if these all got left behind on the table after the meal then at least the money went to a good cause. Most people wore their charity badges for the rest of the day and my family had good fun colecting 98 of them throughout the engagement.

Karen-and-Mark-small-14
 What song did you have as your first dance?Our first dance was to ‘Ho Hey’ by The Lumineers. We’ve never had ‘a song’ for the whole ten years we’d been together. But we used to sing the lyrics of this to each other in the kitchen sometimes when we were messing about and one night we were out in a pub fairly drunk before the wedding and it came on and we both looked at each other and decided that this was our song. It was the perfect choice and the band learnt to play it for us – it also was really short so we didn’t have to dance in front of everyone for too long!
Karen and Mark small-10
Karen’s Top Tips For Bride-to-be’s

Don’t let anything bother you on the day. Enjoy every minute of it, it goes so fast. We also didn’t book our honeymoon until a few weeks after the wedding and I’m so pleased we did that.

Just before you go… We are also VERY proud to show you the promo video to this gorgeous day, just click on the link and get soppy, just like I did.

http://bit.ly/16tDEtF

BEAUTIFUL! What lovely photographs and such a happy couple.  Very romantic, indeed.  Please head over to Mark’s website if you are loving his vintage style – we cannot get enough of it!

Until Next Time xxx
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