If you are looking for inspiration for your wedding on a tight budget then today’s wedding is for you!
After realising their dream of a barn wedding venue was going to be way out of their budget and creative control they decided to take the proverbial bull by the horns and turn their godparents old barn into their dream wedding space!
This couple are quite possibly the most thriftiest couple I have ever known, the brides mother in law made her dress, the food was provided by friends and family and the decor was a collection of charity shop buys and donations.
You know this is going to be a super duper DIY wedding when the groom even lists ‘a friends attic’ as one of the listed suppliers.
Naomi: We decided to hold our ceremony in George’s godparents barn. The place holds huge sentimental value for us and is absolutely beautiful with the surrounding views. We were keen to add all our own decor to the ceremony space so it was important to us that the venue would allow for our own unique ‘twist’. Prior to the wedding the barn was used as storage for bits and bobs so I was so pleased that we were able to transform the barn into exactly what we wanted.
Our desire was for every detail of our wedding to have an authentic and vintage touch and my dress was certainly authentic and vintage. I knew I wanted a lace vintage dress that would have the wow factor. My mother-in-law with all of her creativity and expertise actually made the dress of my dreams. We travelled all the way to Nottingham just to find the perfect lace in order to make the dress. I don’t mean to brag but it truly was exquisite.
I wanted the feel of my whole outfit to reflect 1940’s glam so I wore bold makeup with a strong red lip. I had my hair in the style of a 1940’s movie star and took it down in the evening for a more natural look.
My bridesmaids wore red 1950’s style dresses with an under skirt. Red is my favourite colour and I wanted dresses that were bright and vibrant.
As you can probably tell from our outfit choices, we love vintage! Red, white and brown were the chosen colours. Think lace and hessian. My dad made us a spiralled chandelier out of jars and we stood under the chandelier as we said our vows. My idea for the chandelier came from Pinterest. Everyone commented on the chandelier saying how original and beautiful it looked. For the actual barn we kept the décor fairly simplistic. We used a lot of white sheets that my mother in law had collected from her college. Such a cost effective way to decorate the room and it looked beautiful. One of George’s family friends works in a garden centre so he borrowed some beautiful trees for the day. We used them to create the aisle and at the entrance as guests arrived. We used lots of cool props to decorate as well. i.e vintage suitcases and ladder with old photographs, white candle sticks and apple crate boxes. My mother in law and I also made white bunting to go across the whole ceiling of the barn. We even borrowed my brother’s VW camper van and kitted it out with vintage décor for guests to go and chill. Inside the van was our wedding book for everyone to sign and photos of George and me.
George: I wanted the ushers and I to wear an element that was the same. We all wore tweed-pattern style trousers for a vintage look. Our trousers…unified us, you could say. The coolest thing about the suit was the tailcoat I wore, I had always wanted to wear one for my wedding day; a friend of ours was clearing out their house a few months before and they had found in their attic a genuine 19th century woollen tailcoat, and it happened to fit me perfectly. We dry-cleaned it and it was good to go. Blatantly destiny. I prefer a good old cravat over anything else, it was more vintage for our theme and it was the bit of red to be in keeping with the colour scheme of the wedding.
We decided not to have a cake, we thought it was a bit too predictable so instead we had a huge cupcake piñata that my sister in law made. It was amazing! It had flashing lights and sprinkles made out of foam. We hooked it up to the top of the barn and then during the reception Naomi was blindfolded given a stick and the cupcake was lowered down to the soundtrack from the film ET. Everyone loved it especially the kids who grabbed all the sweets.
We had an incredible Mumford and Sons style band during the ceremony who are some great friends of ours. I am a film editor so we actually produced our own mini media story to play for our guests. We found a huge gold frame in the corner of the barn that was absolutely stunning and knew instantly that we wanted to use it as a prop during the day. So…………. We found a white sheet and created a screen to play the media on. We hung the frame from the ceiling off the barn. It looked so cool. Now we are investing in our own business for making short media clips for other couple’s weddings so watch this space!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Rather than having a band in the evening we kept it really casual and played music from a mac. We did however play 1940’s video clips of dancing on the gold framed screen whilst the music was playing.
After the ceremony we had a vintage tea party held in a beautiful marquee. The ushers served sandwiches from apple crate boxes and cakes. With their flat caps and braces they looked just the part. All the food was made by family and friends and it was incredible. We also collected several tea sets over the months from charity shops prior to the day.
For the evening food one of our really good friends has her own Indian cookery business so she made some delicious curries. My Dad helped to cook. The whole day was a real family affair and it felt like lots of people were involved. We bought wooden cutlery and cool boxes for containers. It was very informal and guests just mingled around whilst enjoying a delicious curry.
We were so lucky to have such amazing weather on the day. The views of the Herefordshire countryside were breathtaking. People were blown away by what we produced on such a tight budget. What was so special about the day was that it was so authentic and different. It was unique to us and that’s what we really wanted.
Never assume that having lots of money to spend on a wedding is what makes it good. Being on a tight budget meant that we had to think outside the box. It was so much fun and we felt like we had such an ownership over the day. I appreciate this could be a daunting prospect for those who feel they lack in the creative department but that’s when you get people involved with skills and expertise to make it happen. We had such incredible people around us with such talent and it just worked so well.
Photography – Jess Withey Photography/ Makeup – Bryony Stewart/ Bridesmaids dresses – Ebay/ Groomsmen outfits – Ebay & Matalan/ Entertainment – Freedom Church Band/ Marquee – Tents 4 Elements/ Food – Rayessa’s Indian Kitchen/
It’s surprising what you can do with a little bit of imagination and some help from loved ones isn’t it?
Much Bespoke Love