So, the second of the weddings I have attended this year. I thought it was going to be hard to not compare this wedding to the first when doing my write up but they were so completely different that hopefully I have managed an unbiased account.
A Church Wedding
The wedding ceremony was held in the village Church, which was beautiful and within walking distance of the pub for people who got there early! The seating arrangements in the Church were very casual, apart from the front row being reserved for the bridesmaids (yes they did need a whole row, there were about 7!) and you could sit anywhere, which was nice.
The ceremony was relatively short, for a Church wedding, and apart from the priest getting the bride’s name wrong(!!), it was a lovely service. After the signing of the register the newly married couple and the wedding party exited to Stevie Wonder’s Signed, Sealed, Delivered which was a fun end to the formalities.
As this was a Church wedding the newlyweds and all the guests needed to get from the Church to the reception. The bride had arranged a coach to take all the guests across whilst the bride and groom boarded a horse and carriage with a chilled bottle of champagne!
On arrival at the reception there were photo collages of the Hen and Stag Dos, which were pretty entertaining to get the afternoon started and, of course, glasses of champagne. It was a gloriously sunny day so all the guests were sitting outside drinking and smoking, waiting for the festivities to begin. There was a nice garden area with a children’s play park and a tent selling Pimms and cider, to embrace the gorgeous weather.
The table decorations were lovely with simple butterfly table number holders, red organza bags containing the classic sugared almonds and a smattering of table confetti.
The meal was a buffet with the tables going up in order so you didn’t have to queue for too long. Everyone was allocated some cold meats and then you could help yourself to a selection of salads and hot potatoes and vegetables. This was a great way to ensure that even the fussiest of eaters could enjoy their dinner.
The speeches were good with heartfelt well wishes from the father of the bride and the father of the groom. The groom put his own funny twist on thanking everyone for their contributions to the day and a selection of gifts were given to the bridesmaids and grooms men. It was the best man who was sadly a bit of a disappointment. Now this guy is a character who can tell a good story, so I have to admit I had high expectations. The mumbled ‘I’m really happy for you guys, congratulations’ could not have been further from what I had been expecting!
At the end of the speeches there was a surprise treat for the bride. She had wanted an ice-cream man to come and give ice-creams to all the children. Unfortunately, this had not been possible so as a surprise the father of the groom had rigged a bicycle pulling a cool box filled with ice-cream, cones and flakes who came in and did exactly that, although quite a few of us adults were treated to the delicious Cornish ice-creams too.
The Personal Touches
This was a real family wedding, with everyone helping out in some way. One of the bridesmaids did the bride’s and all the bridesmaids’ hair. The sister of the groom made the Table Plan, which was beautiful. The sister of the bride was the chief photographer throughout the reception, diligently snapping away with a decent SLR camera. The father of the groom made this excellent wedding post box for the wedding cards. A close friend made the evening buffet.
As it was such a beautiful day a lot of the wedding was spent outside. After the speeches everyone headed back out into the sunshine for more chatting, drinking and yes, there were a lot of smokers smoking. On the whole everyone was happy although when the bride wanted to get everyone dancing there was a bit of a struggle to tempt people inside, until the sun went down.
The music was alright for dancing, although the DJ was not very prepared and only really had wedding classics, hardly any current music, so he wasn’t able to fulfil many of the requests. At the end of the night something did set the fire alarm off, but almost as if by fate the coach had arrived to take people back to town so it was quite a good way to get everyone on their way.
Top Take-Aways From This Wedding
- Make sure the priest has the correct names on their notes before the service starts
- If you are going to have a venue with a nice outside area be prepared for the fact that people will spend a lot of time out there (if the weather is good) and be prepared to be out there with your guests
- A gorgeous wedding CAN be done on a tight budget, as long as you have lovely accommodating friends who are willing to help
- Give the DJ a list of your favourite songs in advance and make sure they have those and any similar songs with them
- Think about transport, if you want everyone to be drinking and relaxing and they need to get between venues arrange appropriate transport for them
Alexandra Gaiger is a Digital Marketing Architect at ThoughtShift Ltd and a contributor to the help! i’m getting married blog, you can follow her musings (about digital marketing, shoes and other nonsense!) on Twitter @lottafizz and find her on Google+.