You’ve had your good parts and your bad parts but I’m glad to see you go. Time goes by so quickly none the less but the positivity of a new year is something that excitement everyone a little bit. So what’s happened this year?
The year started with quite a few ups, I made quite a few new friends and felt happy. We got married then we had our honeymoon with our son at centre parts. We had lots and lots of days out as a family and actively spent more time seeing friends and family. We got a zoo pass and have probably been about fifteen times. My mental health suffered many times but I overcame it each time and now have counselling sessions which are helping so much. I left my job. While it’s been hard leaving something that became my identity to a extent it has been the best experience and I guess it helped me see who my friends where too. Elijah turned two and we spent lots of time with his friends on play dates. It’s been lovely watching Elijah grow into a little boy and Elijah took his first steps early in this year. I’m looking forward to going in to the new year happily married and in love with my little family.
Dress shopping was going to be difficult for me as I hate attention being on me. I wear something and feel uncomfortable in it even if I loved it when I brought it. Your wedding day is the one day EVERYONE looks at you and easily awaits to see the dress. Looking online I had ideas of what I wanted and so I set a date to go dress shopping.
I went just before January, 4 months before my wedding. I knew I would be getting married in such a short time and it panicked me. I wanted to look earlier but we kept forgetting to book a day. The first dress I tried on was the style of what I’d seen online. I wanted sleethes and basically my whole body hidden. It was absolutely hidious when I tried it on and it put me right of sleethes straight away. I scanned the rack and wasn’t having much luck. I was still big from having Elijah and trying to loose weight so I was looking for the size I was then. The shop owner then went to looking and brought in a dress it looked so boring and plain as she walked it up to me and said I know it’s the size down which in wedding dress sizes is two sizes down but you could always get a seamstress to let some out and if you’re planning to let some out then it might just fit. At first I didn’t want to try it on because I thought 1 I wouldn’t like the dress and 2 get upset as it didn’t fit me. I was helped into the dress by the dress fitter and I walked out. The dress was heavy but it felt oddly light. I picked the dress up and stood in front of the mirror. Instantly my mum and I burst into tears this was THE DRESS I couldn’t believe the second dress was the dress. It didn’t fit as she had no more but she said it could be let out a size or two and I said I’d loose the weight to fit in this. I asked the lady to reserve it and I’d be back within a hour if I still wanted the dress. We had another shop to look in. I went in and nothing was right I hated every single last dress and nothing compared so we went back and I asked to try it on again. I put the dress back on and I felt like a princess I know cliche! The trail was beautiful and the little embroidering of lace gave it a elegant feel and wasn’t too much. I never wanted a open shoulder but it made my body look right. It hid my tummy and hugged my hips. We brought it then and there. I couldn’t believe my luck that the second dress I tried on was the right one and nothing else jumped out at me or us even now after my wedding nothing has grabbed any of my attention. I was so glad that I’d found my dress and the one of the sale rack, which was so much cheeper we’d saved about 2k on a dress aswell as it being beautiful.
Top tips for dress shopping.
Clear your head. Looking online to get a idea helps but don’t pick a select dress or you’ll never find the dress.
Dresses are expensive you can’t go in expecting to only pay a few hundred.
You can pay for a veil somewhere else, the lady wanted 85 for a veil, I found one online for
You also have to pay for a seamstress to fit it exactly to you which is costly also.
Dresses sizes can be changed about one up and two down sometimes more.
Let others help you.
Take someone with you to try the dresses on and get opinions.
Wear light natural make up. Putting the dresses on you don’t want to get foundation on dress and have to pay for it to be cleaned.
Wear a strapless bra and good underwear the seamstress will probably see you in your underwear.
If you feel the dress is the one it probably is and don’t buy second best.
Only your opinion matters nobody else’s. Someone may not like your dress but if you like it that’s what matters. They’re not wearing it.
Using a Seamstress. I went over the road to this beautiful seamstress shop which was painted red and knocked with my wedding dress she said she would book me for fittings and I could see how weight loss was going and plan. She was very good and I came back two months after. Two months before wedding was my first fitting and another two weeks before to check all right and anymore adjustments. The first appointment I was very nervous about it and I lost sleep worrying I wouldn’t fit in my dress. I had been dieting so hard I’d gone down a dress size although I was proud it wasn’t enough. I went in on the morning and stood up. They ask you to bring your wedding heals and I told them I’d be going in pumps so stood barefoot in my socks and dress. They help you into your dress and do it up. I wore no bra as my dress had a bra sort of fitted inside and the last thing I wanted on my wedding day was to be uncomfortable I’d brought a bra incase but was comfortable without it. I was suprised when it did up half way and was proud I’d lost so much weight although I worried nothing could be done. I told them I wanted to loose more so they said they’d start the work on the length and making a loop so I could tie the train up for first dance. They got on floor using lots of pins to pick up each of the many layers to mark what needed to be done I stood for about ten minuites chatting to my friend who had come. I then got changed and left. I tried really hard the next few months to loose the weight and when it came to my last fitting the dress bloody did up! I was so happy I had done it I had gotten into the dress and it fit perfectly the dress was all the more beautiful now. They said they would let my hips out a bit as I have wide hips but other than that regardless it fit and I could walk. I was so excited. They finished the work in a few days and I picked it up and left with my mother in law at her house so Elijah wouldn’t get a hold of it. Seamstresses aren’t cheep and you need to put away some extra money this lovely lady charged me 250 but could of charged more.
The day of the wedding the girls helped me into the dress and it didn’t move atall all day. It was long and a bit of a pain to walk about in but I didn’t care it was so beautiful at the reception I tied it up and didn’t care who I made have to jump out of my way. I danced all night in it and absolutely adored it. I only needed the toilet once all day and took three of us to go lifting up my dress but we managed it was to be expected.
I don’t have many photos and forgot to take a photo of dress other than one in seamstress office which isn’t the greatest but here’s some pictures of it on!
Picking your bridesmaids can be hard work but I chose 4 of my nearest and dearest friends to be mine. People who I knew if I ever needed them they’d be there. So how did I choose? Basically I didn’t think about it I just basically knew and I think if you don’t know they shouldn’t be a big part of special day.I didn’t make the girls think they’d be bridesmaids, I told them I was asking other people and I think it made them think they weren’t going to be asked. I asked them by sending them a confetti popper filled with dried flowers and the question would you be my bridesmaid in. I didn’t ask in person so they all loved the surprise and got back to me immediately. For my flower girl I sent a bracelet with “Will you be my flower girl?” on and it said on it she’d get a wish and when it broke it would come true. Also sent through post as surprise.
Before the hen do I thought the girls should meet so it wouldn’t be awkward. I created a group chat where we talked all wedding things. I arranged a meal and to go shopping for wedding makeup for the girls as they wanted to do their own. They all brought the same lipstick which matched and decided on what look to go for. They all got on very well like a house on fire and started planning hen night.
For the hen night I didn’t want to do much. I’m quite an anxious person and the thought of people looking at me and doing something to make me look like a tit made me feel quite sick. I said I’d be happy with getting wasted and having a nice meal. We where going to go bowling but I decided I needed a few more cocktails in me. The girls surprised me with lovely decorations and sashes and it was lovely. There are some pretty atrocious photos of me after a few drinks so I won’t be posting the before and after photos they got of me! We all (those of us that could) got very drunk and had lots of fun. It was a great night and it was lovely the amount of people who say congratulations to you all night. The night ended with a kebab of course in my tiara after almost starting a drunken fight with some guy who kept trying to touch me! Classy as always.
The night before the wedding Taryn my unofficial maid of honour stayed over if it wasn’t for her I don’t know how I’d of got through the night or morning. I don’t show it but I was excited and frightened as I hate spotlight being on me. On the day of the wedding the girls all arrived at around 8 am and we all got ready together taking in turns to get our hair done by the hairdresser. I did all the girls eye make up for them (the same again) and they all looked amazing. We all shared make up and bits and while I had a make up artist do my make up it was lovely to help with theirs. My mum arrived mid morning with a feast and we all ate carefully to avoid getting food on our Prestine make up. Getting into the dresses made it all real and I got nervous because everyone was looking at me in my dress and the thought of doing it in front of others made me want to pass out but I knew I was going to be married soon and got through it. The bridesmaids went in one car and my best friend Taryn came with me and my dad In wedding car. Once we got there my worry got more and more but the girls calmed me down and stopped me killing my photographer for trying to take photos of me while I was stressed out. They all looked absolutely beautiful and did brilliantly all day I couldn’t of chose better people if I’d tried.
I really enjoyed my day with these girls and dancing all night even if I was a bit anxious all day they continued to keep me calm and carried on without me when I left the photos as I’d had enough and just wanted to see my husband.
This photo was taken before I got separated from my bridesmaids and Taryn stopped me from having a mini breakdown, while my dad stood there like Christ Bridezilla has entered the room.
Just so you know these dresses cost me like 30 quid each by the way.I know right bargain! just goes to show you don’t have to spend a fortune to let someone’s beauty shine through. I originally asked the girls what they liked and looked online we where going to look in shops but same things where online. All the girls loved what I’d selected and it was lucky I got dresses that fit all them without needing a seamstress. When I ordered the dresses one of the bridesmaids was 15 weeks pregnant and would be 30 at the wedding so I ordered her the size up and it fit perfectly! It’s not all about money at a wedding it’s about you, your commitment and your friendships and family relationships all coming together to fill each other with love for that special day.
You need your bride squad and your best pals and I’m so incredibly greatful to Bryony, Taryn, Sammie and Zoey for their friendship and their help on my special day.
Entertainment is something really important for a wedding. When you’re having a reception you don’t want you guests stood around staring at the walls bored out of their mind so this is something I focused on quite a lot. Having children coming it was essential they wouldn’t get bored and have things to do and play with at all times.
First of all you want a dj. A good one, you want them to be able to take over your entire disco. I looked around at reviews I didn’t care about prices I just wanted a good one and then met with them. I didn’t tell them what to play I just said give me a good mix and shove in some Kanye, iggy azalea and queen. What’s a wedding without queen. Other than my first dance I didn’t request any specifics I said no black lace (party tunes)and under no circumstances would baby shark be played or their dj set would be thrown out the nearest window. The only thing I didn’t want is to feel like I was at a kids party, it was me and James wedding day and we love anything we can sing too and dance and said let the guests request it’s a party! I even got little dj requests made on Etsy and shipped to me for the wedding. I feel the dj really made a difference and EVERYONE got up and danced at some point even if the dance floor wasn’t huge and to my surprise I basically danced all night. And i may or may not of been dropping to floor and rapping like a mad woman but i was killing it!
Secondly we wanted a photo booth. We looked at lots of places on line and when we went to pick dj had a look on their website and they just so happened to do a photo booth too. I looked through the photos they had and the props and loved them. I booked straight away. Photo booths are a bit expensive but I don’t care everyone absolutely loved the entertainment and even the quiet ones went in. The package came with photos put online only I could access, a usb with them all, photos for all the guests (as many as they wanted) and a photo book the staff would print a extra of each photo and put them in and make guests write a comment next to it like a guest book. I’m so glad they did as the guests forgot to write in my guest book and I had like three pages! It was full to the brim and was such a precious memory keep sake and makes me chuckle watching how people get more drunk and the naughty drawings and words appeared. The props where amazing and they had two massive boxes filled with hats, masks, accessories, signs, wigs you name it they had them! The guests could also choose how many photos to take in one and choose everything down to the background. Perhaps the funniest was cousin completely wasted doing some sort of gangster pose with spider man in the background writing in the book “cogratumilations wagwan”. Everyone loved it and it was nice to see couples and family’s taking photos and when I go to my family and friends houses now and see them hanging on the wall it just fills me with joy. It also meant we had some immediate wedding photos which I loved. When we went home we took them back to the hotel and that night went through laughing.
Activities for the older guests. As previously mentioned I got some dj requests made to start conversations and let my guests choose what they had playing to dance too. I also put out some little activity sheets which came back absolutely halerious especially when people got drunk and filled them with fake people such as the rock and some other guy from fast and furious. Apparently I have very famous friends. I got adult games of giant naughts and crosses, lido and snakes and ladders which I donated to a primary school after the big day. Adults like to eat too so I got a doughnut wall filled with doughnuts and I got pick n mix which guests could help them self’s to which also entertained them. Also the bar defiantly helped entertain everyone!
Children where quite hard as he’s a lot of baby’s and toddlers, but I got children all colouring books (big ones to take home) , crayons, bubbles and some activity sheets from Poundland. When kids got bored of them it entertained the adults. I also brought toys from Elijahs home like cars, figures and my friend brought some too. These went down a big hit with the younger children and they where entertained for so long! They also loved the pick n mix. When the music came on they loved having a boogy on the dance floor and chasing the lights. The kids clearly enjoyed the photo booth too as there’s lots of photos of them with different hats and masks on and they walked around all night wearing different things!
Other than normal entertainment big things like first dance and speeches where put closely together before the dj started so that everyone could have cake and eat and do what they wanted and so that children could go when tired or bored!
Overall I think I entertained everyone pretty well and there’s things I could of done to entertain people a bit more but you do what you can! But it was a fantastic day!
When we where wedding planning we knew full well we wanted an intimate wedding only with our nearest and dearest friends and family. No acquaintances just people who we where the closest too and people who didn’t just want a free meal and excuse to dress up. Choosing who to invite to your wedding can be VERY stressfull. They say that getting married, having children and buying a house are three of the biggest stressfull life events you can ever do and we choose to do all three in the space of a 2 years. FUN! Nonetheless we enjoyed wedding planning all the same. When it comes to inviting people you really need to decide who you are the closest too and if you want them involved in your special day. Do you want a massive event everyone will talk about or just a special day you will cherish…
You will get a lot of people wanting to invite their friends and dictate who can come and who cannot, it gets rather stressful and tiring when people think they have any say in your day whatsoever. Also the more people you invite the more expensive it gets not just the meal but the decorations to cater and chairs and sashes.
When you invite people you want to give well enough notice so when you have found somewhere i found that i benefited from save the dates. A save the date is a slip you send in the post which states the day of your wedding well in advance so people can take the day off work. I had a lot of medical staff and self employed people attending my wedding day so i wanted to get them out as early as possible. I sent these off 9 months before our wedding day. This gave people ampule chance to say if they could or could not come. We only received one person telling us they couldn’t come because they where on holiday but lucky for us they got pregnant and couldn’t fly that close to their due date (She was one of my bridesmaids so i was thrilled she got to be in my special day).
A few months after when i had started to finalise times and meal times i decided to then create wedding invites. I quite enjoyed the proceess of handmaking our own online. We put every relevent detail we could think needed to be noted. As i chose a local venue alot didn;t need saying but with my guests from outside of town i though important to state where to stay in the area near by. It is a good idea when making a invite to include a few details. i will list bellow
Time to arrive. Not the time of ceremony as guests who are late will end up missing your day. You also want your guests to relax.
Time of ceremony. So guests can roughly know how smoothly the day is going to go and if they are that late they arent coming in.
Time of food. So guests can know what time to eat before leaving and decide if they need too. People then wont be complaining about waiting and not knowing when they are going to eat.
Time of reception. To let guests know there will be a reception and that they are invited so they can plan their day and where it is if not in same place.
Time to leave. So you don’t have to kick people out and taxis can be pre-booked.
Local places to stay overnight. For out of town guests wanting to get wasted pretty much.
The venues address including postcode.Guests have to know where to go and don’t want to be chasing you up.
The date. Clearly so people don’t get confused.
Food options. So you can cater to allergens and needs.
The names of who are getting married. So people don’t get confused if they go to a few weddings or think whos wedding have they been invited too.
State plus ones or not. Name who is invited and if they can bring a plus one or not so people do not assume and you can have numbers before the day.
RSVP day. A day for everyone to reply to with contact details.
Where to buy your invites. You can get a lot of invites from shops such as paper chase and hobby craft as well as etsy. However i wanted to make my own online as i cannot write all that neatly. So i used vista print, i didn’t know until we looked online. I looked on their website and they have lots of templates and everything is completely customisation from material made on to the text and fonts. You can even add envelopes so all you have to do is write the names and addresses. They where also pretty cheep. I brought my save the dates with magnets so could be stuck to fridge so guests could keep the date clearly displayed in their home from here too. Both sets and envelopes for both with postage to my house cost 50 which was so cheep and my invites where double sided and made with linen. So have a good look around and choose what you want and only what you love!
As my photos are primarily all of our wedding day I thought it would be a good topic to explore with you all. So here we go sit back and relax and if you have any questions at all please do comment or directly email me and I will be more than happy to help as much as I can. This wedding talk will be in several parts so lots of information is to follow which may help if you love wedding planning or just all things weddings!
I’ve always known I wanted to marry James. From when we started dating I knew he was the one and someone I would be honoured to one day call my husband. For me personally I have never thought of getting married as just a need for a party it’s always been something personal for me. It’s been about being his wife being able to have his surname and take the ultimate leap of faith. I remember spending years joking are you gonna ask me to marry you today and both chuckling and smiling away when he would say soon. I’ll leave the engagement story for another day as it’s quite a cute little story. When he asked me I was super happy and The happiest id ever been. At first I didn’t want to rush getting married I wanted to enjoy that short time when you where engaged and we always knew when we where ready we would get married on our anniversary of when we got together.
I felt slightly pressured when pregnant which only happened 4 months after we got engaged to get married so it would be easier on birth certificate exetera but when we started looking at venues we really didn’t feel the time was right, we where supper stressed and looking at places we hated as it needed to be quick and other people got involved and that caused a great deal of stress so we decided to put it off. Around August last year just before our little guy was nearly one we decided to look properly.
We looked at quite a few venues. We looked at big flashy barns and registry offices. We looked for small and big. We saw some venues on hotels where the decor made me want to vomit and venues that made my eyes water at the price for nothing special where all my guests would have to drive too. So after months of research and looking around we decided to look at a venue which was a very old venue and perfect for what we wanted it was very rustic and has character so we booked it that day for our anniversary this year and got to it. This venue was also the place we once went for a desert on the first night James told me he loved me so had a bit of a special place in our heart.
Some tips for finding a venue…
Decide where you want to get married. Do you want to get married abroad where a lot of people will not come and can sometimes cause arguments with those who feel left out.
Do you want to invite everyone you know or just your closest friends. From that you can look into venues to your size and budget.
Budget! Do you need to spend a fortune for one day? Or do you want to show off and have a massive party for everyone you know.
Reviews. Check the reviews and speak to people about what they have said about getting married there.
Think about your style. When you are choosing a venue you need it to go with your style. If you’re going for a vintage look you need somewhere that matches that. If you’re going for a rustic style you can’t very well get married in a pub as the decorations just won’t go.
Look at the good bad and the ugly. This will help you decide what you like and hate and will help make your choice better.
Don’t loose your head stay calm. It’s your day and things will happen when they happen there is no rush.
Once we found the venue and we decided it was for us we decided on our style more. We looked into flowers and decorations to dress the area. I hired a florist for artificial flowers as didn’t want real so that I could keep my flowers and my bridesmaids and some guests got them as gifts. I primarily brought table bits from the range, dunelm, hobby craft, Etsy and Amazon. All my friends said how chilled I was about the whole thing. I just decided on things I liked and brought them as I liked them. I didn’t put stress on things and just mixed and matched bits all on a budget and if we liked something more we returned bits and replaced with better bits we liked more.
We brought doughnuts the day before our wedding and made a doughnut wall with boxes underneath to refill them. We made our own pick and mix table with boxes of sweets with tongs and mr and Mrs pick and mix bags to let guests choose more food. We had a low key bbq as it’s something everyone enjoyed and was easy to cater for different needs such as vegetarian and coeliac. We had it at 4pm so it was a early tea and pick and mix later and doughnuts filled the guests up. There was no need to spend another load of money on a buffet where most of the food goes to waste. Our ceremony was at 2 so guests could eat at 12 and arrive from 1 before they came so guests where happy all day. We picked colours we liked for lights in the room and fairy lights. We picked how we wanted the room ordered too. We didn’t want a head table as we are all family and friends and there was no need to put family above other family to have them on a certain table. We put a rough schedule out and allowed parents to come and go as please and plenty of toys and activity’s set ready for them to enjoy all day and adult board games aswell as quiet rooms for mothers to breastfeed or calm down time for children. All together our entire budget was 7k including everything from hair and make up to venue and entertainment and we hit just under budget. All our guests had a fabulous time and it was a day filled with only our nearest and dearest and just a fantastic day.
Some photos of our venue below. Subscribe and follow for more!