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11th Dec 2012

Beaulieu & Will's Big Day

We met when I was 18 and Will was 25.
I was a matron at a boy's prep school in Bury and Will was captain of the local cricket team where some of the teachers played .
We moved in together straight away and bought a house of our own four years later. We make each other laugh everyday and I think that's important!
He took me to Nymans gardens on a very warm, sunny day in September and we had a picnic. That’s when he popped the big question!

I had seen the ring in a jewellers in Chichester, but thought it was way out of our budget. I had no idea Will was planning to buy it, until I spoiled it a couple of weeks later and told him that I don't like surprises so he told me. It is a brilliant cut diamond solitaire ring with a tapered baguette diamond on either side.

I am not really a ‘weddingy’ person so I’d never thought about my wedding. The only way could do it was if it was really relaxed and didn't feel like too much of a big deal.
I always knew I wanted an off the shoulder dress, because being quite small I have never managed to find a shoulder-less dress before that fitted me perfectly!
I came into White Mischief and went round with my mother choosing about 15 dresses in all different styles. The one I chose I wasn't sure about, but my mum told me to try it to see what it looked like on. As soon as I put it on I knew! It was Peaches, by Augusta Jones; A strapless gown with a lace bodice and drop-waist tulle skirt. Such a soft, romantic gown!

I chose my shoes about 5 minutes before my first fitting. I hadn't found anything suitable until then. They looked quite art deco, with open toes and a muted gold trim around the cream leather.
My veil was floor length with graduated pearls from the bottom to the top. I added my own hair accessory that was bought for me by one of my closest friends to wear on my wedding day, which made it really special.
Will bought me a single diamond necklace to wear on our wedding day and one of my bridesmaids bought me a beautiful vintage watch in Cornwall a few days before the ceremony. I also wore a pair of pink pearls that Will had bought me in Porthleven on one of our first visits to Cornwall.
Apart from my jewellery, I had no other accessories. I wanted to keep it simple.
I absolutely didn't want someone else doing my hair and make up. The day before the wedding I went out to Truro and bought myself some nice make up. I wanted to look and feel like me so I did my own about half an hour before the ceremony.

One of my bridesmaids found a lovely 1950's style dress in Marks and Spencers and it was perfect although by the time we saw it, most had sold out, so a few were bought in the wrong size and were altered.
Will, his best man and his usher (my brother) were fully kitted out in linen suits and brown brogues from Marks and Spencer and also found their ties there too!

Almost all the flowers that were used were grown in somebody's garden or allotment especially for the wedding. My grandmother, Stacy (a bridesmaid) and I spent a day pruning the roses that were to surround us on the day and we used the petals to dry on the agar for the flower-girls to throw, as we walked up the rose walk as a married couple.  

We didn't really have a theme, but absolutely everything was old. The marquee was an old fashioned canvas one with long wooden poles. We bought it from a marquee company in Cornwall that hadn't used it in years. We bought the chairs at auction and car boot sales, focusing on mainly Edwardian period ones, we bought cut glass in white and green at car boot sales and charity shops and we bought all the glasses in the same way. A dear friend sourced lots of colclough ivy china, which we used for the tea. As the wedding was in a garden setting we focused on garden colours; greens, fawns, creams etc..

We hand wrote each invitation ourselves using a parker fountain pen in a green ink and bought some green wax and a seal with the letter 'R' (my new initial) to seal the envelopes.
We invited all our closest family and friends. We had 120 people and most of them were friends, which was lovely.

We got married at Trevoole Farm in Praze-an-Beeble, Cornwall, in our fiends farmhouse garden under a beautiful climbing rose (which we had registered as a venue) and our vintage marquee was set up in another part of the garden. To get to it you have to walk through a long rose walk, which was a long tunnel of roses in full bloom. We have stayed there on holiday twice a year since we've been together and it is very special to us.

Our friend Beth, who's home Trevoole Farm is, is a very talented at styling and has worked for a long time at Laura Ashley, her good friend Mel who works for The White Company came and stayed the week before to help. Beth’s mother and her best friend Julia also stayed. Rose, Beth's mother, did an incredible job with the flowers and sourced a lot of our beautiful decorations! My family and close friend Sally stayed the week to help and my dear friends Becky, Joe, Vicky and Roger (all the way from New Zealand) came the week before to help too!

On the morning of the wedding, I was very calm. Will and I got up and had breakfast and were interviewed for a magazine that we will be featured in.
The sun came out and we were married under an arch of roses by a lovely registrar that we had got to know very well. We had a string quartet to play before during and after. My brother read a poem.

The reception was also very relaxed. We all had a lovely tea with sandwiches, cakes and scones that had been made fresh that morning. Instead of champagne we served alcoholic ginger beer in lemonade jugs. The party was in a separate marquee near the summerhouse (that served as a bar).
The marquee was lit by hundreds of meters of fairy lights that we had bought the previous Christmas and as many disco balls as we could find. We had an amazing function band called 'Malfunction', who came all the way from Sussex and everybody got up and danced straight away! We didn't stop until 4am! We then had fresh locally made hot pasties for supper!

My mum made three lovely cakes that she and her best friend Sally decorated with white icing, lace and fresh flowers!
We collected vintage napkins for the table and each was individually embroidered with our guests' names
Beth's brother in-law Paul Hill is an Art Director and photographed everything for us. The photographs were incredible. I told him that I didn’t want staged photographs, especially any cheesy shots of Will and I. I just wanted him to capture the atmosphere of the day, which he did beautifully. We also had a magazine there to photograph it.
We didn't want a first dance, but the first song the band played was 'Lets get it on'.


All in all, it was exactly as I wanted it to be. Totally relaxed and not overly planned. It was organised beautifully by our friend Beth and we will always be so grateful that she and her husband Travis were so kind to let us get married there. It was a real one off! So many people came to help and we were so lucky.
Two days after the wedding, the garden was open for charity (NGS) and we sold everything (flowers, chairs, decorations, glasses etc) and all the profits went to the charity.

My advice to any bride-to-be would be; Don't do anything that you don't want to do. It's your day!

Inspired by my wedding I am going into be going into business with a friend specialising in bespoke event styling. Look out for SB Event Styling!


Bridesmaids: www.marksandspencer.com
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Photographer: Paul Hill
Dress: Peaches by Augusta Jones
Location: Cornwall
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