Josh & Libby
What was the theme/look of your day? Why did you choose this theme/look?
I have seen so many different styles of weddings working as a wedding coordinator, but I had always dreamt of a classic white wedding, something that would appear timeless. Halfway through planning I panicked that I wasn’t using many current trends and worried that the style may come across as boring. I’m so happy that I stuck to my original vision as everything came together exactly how I’d pictured it would.
What decorations did you have? Did you make any of them yourself?
Flowers were the main feature of our wedding and our amazing florist, Avant Garden, went above and beyond anything we’d ever imagined, the entire venue smelt amazing! Our table centre pieces were so big and full of hydrangeas that no one believed they were real! I own a wedding and events prop hire company so a few of our pieces made an appearance. We had a copper and hydrangea backdrop and a neon Happily Ever After sign for the evening reception. We made our name cards, menu cards and the seating plan ourselves. One of my favorite decorations was the flower frame for the seating plan. We had grey and white handmade macaroons for favours in individual Perspex boxes. I knew through work the impact candles have when creating a beautiful atmosphere so we included as many as we could, they were placed all around the venue.
What colours did you choose, and why?
White, silver and grey (selfishly all my favorite colours) I wanted everything to feel clean and crisp, simple but effective was the goal. I’d always dreamt of a white summer wedding and that’s exactly what we accomplished.
Did you use flowers to decorate?
Yes, everywhere! White Hydrangeas and some greenery.
What was the atmosphere you were hoping to create?
The magical venue
Why did you choose your venue? And what did you love about the look/feel of it?
We originally visited around 7 or 8 venues, all completely different styles, but as soon as we arrived at Mythe Barn we knew it was the one. It was light and modern but full of beautiful rustic features. The setting was stunning, the long drive and the entrance was the perfect introduction. The outdoor area was exactly what we wanted as we’d always imagined everyone eating and drinking outside in a courtyard. It ticked every box and the welcome that we received on our first meeting sealed the deal for us both.
It’s all in the detail
Tell us about your dress – who was it by? Why do you love it? How did you find it?
Hmmm – the dress. It makes me so sad to say this, but my dress turned out to be a bit of a disappointment. The shop I bought it from was owned by a friend I’d met through work and she’s wonderful. I actually found the whole process of picking a dress quite stressful, I think I put too much pressure on myself to find the perfect dress and what I had in my head I just couldn’t find. The dress I finally bought had a huge tulle skirt which I was obsessed with, but the top half needed to be completely re-designed, the sleeves were taken off and the back was cut out – it was a huge gamble. When it was finally returned to me, I didn’t fall in love with it, I didn’t think the fit was right. I look back at photographs now and it still makes me sad as I know most brides adore their dresses. I did, however love my veil, I never wanted to take it off.
What jewellery/accessories and shoes did you wear? Who designed them?
The only jewellery I wore was a pair of my mum’s beautiful diamond earrings. I’m so happy that she trusted me to have them as my ‘something borrowed.’ My shoes were from the Dune bridal range, I loved them, but they were replaced by a pair of bridal flip flops towards the end of the evening!
What did the groom wear and who was it by?
Josh wore a navy three-piece suit from Moss Bros, we actually went shopping together and both loved the suit as soon as we saw it. It was exactly what he’d imagined wearing and was perfect for Summer.
What did the bridesmaids wear, and did they have any accessories?
I let all my bridesmaids choose their own dresses, the majority of them were from Asos. They all have such different styles and I wanted their personalities to show through what they were wearing. Some were glam, others more boho and they all looked stunning. It was really important to me that they all felt amazing in their dresses.
Our daughter’s dresses (flower girls) I sourced from a designer based in Liverpool (Kirsty Doyle) she makes amazing tulle skirts and as soon as I came across her on Instagram, I knew she had to feature somehow. Amelia was 11 so I didn’t want her to look too grown up, I think we got it just right. Both girls wore ballet leotards with their skirts and Lottie our youngest daughter wore ballet shoes. I used to be a ballet dancer, so I was always planning to try and squeeze some element of this into the day!
Tying the knot
Where did you get ready before tying the knot?
Myself, our two children, my parents and all my bridesmaids spent the night before the wedding in the Queen Suite at The Belfry Hotel in Sutton Coldfield. It was the perfect sleep over before the big day. Josh, his family and Groomsmen stayed in a hotel closer to Mythe Barn, with us living an hour away we weren’t going to take the risk of driving to the venue on the day.
Where was your ceremony held?
In the Oak barn.
Did you include any special readings?
Yes, my chief bridesmaid read a special reading that we stumbled across not long after we got engaged.
If you had a drinks reception, where was it held? What drinks/canapes were served?
We chose Pimms and an elderflower sparkler for our drinks reception which was held in the venue’s entry hall. We had the following canapes served on gorgeous glass boxes filled with moss:
Deep fried Thai fishcakes, crispy risotto balls, mini beef burgers and sticky chicken wings – they were amazing!
What kind of role did the music/entertainment play in your big day?
We’d picked our ceremony music right from the beginning, we chose four very special songs that meant a lot to us for different reasons. The song I walked down the aisle to (Pachelbel in Canon D Major) definitely had an impact on how emotional I was walking down the aisle.
We hired Snap Candy photo booth for the evening which was a huge success. Chloe the owner is a friend of mine and I’d never use anyone else her products are amazing.
The Face Acoustic performed between speeches ending and our evening guests arriving. It was the perfect was to transition from day to night and it definitely got everyone in the mood for a party!
What was your first dance song? Was it choreographed?
Our first dance song was Coldplay – Sky full of stars. I’d have loved to have done a fully choreographed routine but when mentioned to Josh it was quickly rejected! Not wanting to risk the possibility of him not turning up on the day I let it go and planned to just come up with something at the last minute.
As it turned out our youngest daughter decided to join us on the dancefloor (completely stealing our thunder) but it was perfect and took the edge off trying to perform a (what could have been) awkward first dance. For extra impact we hired a confetti canon which went off at a poignant moment – we didn’t tell anyone about it and the look on everyone’s faces was priceless.
Food, glorious food
What was on the menu? Why did you choose this food?
The food was so important to us as we LOVE food! We didn’t struggle to pick something from the menu, Josh took the lead on this and we agreed on every course.
Starter: Smoked bacon scotch egg, apple puree, crisp pancetta
Main: Fillet of Beef, dauphinoise Potato, green peppercorn sauce
Dessert: Vanilla Cheesecake with raspberry coulis
Was there a stand-out dish for you? What was it and why?
All the food was beautiful, and a lot of our guests commented on how good it was. It looked stunning too.
Did you have evening food? What was it?
We chose BBQ for our evening food – we thought it would be a people pleaser – who doesn’t love a BBQ in the middle of summer?
What was your favourite moment of the day?
Bride – Walking down the aisle – I was always really looking forward to it but seeing everyone you love in the same room completely overwhelmed me. Then seeing Josh at the end of the aisle (in tears) was the best part for me. I didn’t stop smiling throughout the ceremony, I was so happy. Josh on the other hand, didn’t stop crying!
Groom – Watching Libby walk down the aisle, all the build up came down to that moment and it was priceless, I was an emotional wreck. She looked beautiful. I also loved the band she surprised me with. We always wanted live music to be part of the day so the fact she pulled this off without me knowing was amazing, definitely the best moment after the ceremony.
Were there any little surprises on the day?
I surprised Josh with an acoustic band (The Face Acoustic) who played whilst our evening guests arrived, they definitely got the party started. They were fab!
A little advice
What advice/tips would you give to brides-to-be still planning their big day?
Try not to get too overwhelmed with the planning process (easier said than done) try and remember that the small stuff really doesn’t matter and it’s a waste of time worrying about it. Try and take a step back and enjoy it. I really miss the planning, even when it was overwhelming. If anything didn’t go to plan or was missing on the day I certainly didn’t notice.
My advice to brides and grooms on the day would be to make sure you spend at least five minutes together, alone away from all the madness. It’s such a whirlwind and it’s hard trying to spend time with guests, photos etc, you actually spend a lot of time apart so make sure you make time for each other and soak it all in.
Do you have any wedding regrets, or would you have done anything differently?
Not being able to spend enough time with people individually. I beat myself up for days after the wedding worrying about whether or not I’d had chance to speak to everyone properly. I wish I’d spent a little less time on the dancefloor and more time sat with family telling them how much I appreciated them being there.
Did you go on honeymoon? If so, where did you go?
We had a family ‘mini moon’ to Ibiza straight after the wedding, it was perfect. It gave us time to sit and reflect on the day, just the four of us and talk about our favourite moments. It was so nice to unwind immediately after the chaos.
We then went to the Maldives for our honeymoon in late September, just the two of us. It was the most beautiful place we’ve travelled to, everything we’d dreamt of.
How did you decide on the location? Was there a special reason for choosing your honeymoon location?
We wanted to make sure we went somewhere we wouldn’t usually go as a family and the Maldives have always been on our bucket list. It didn’t disappoint.
Venue: Mythe Barn
Planner/stylist: Willow-Grace Event Styling
Florist: Avant Garden
Dress: Stately Brides
Band: The Face Acoustic
Photobooth: Snapcandy Photobooths