I got married to my amazing husband Tim on the 14th August. We got married in Cirencester, which in Gloustershire in the UK. The venue is an organic farm, so about 95% of everything we ate drank, sat on or looked at was sourced entirely ethically, organically and mostly right there on the farm! (www.theorganicfarmshop.co.uk)
Tim and I met on a free Christian dating site, (www.fusion101.com) and, after our first date lasted 3 days and despite living almost four hours apart, we got engaged four months later! Tim described himself on his profile as a 'tea drinking hippie' so when we started thinking about weddings I imagined him feeling most content in a field with a cup of tea in his hand, and laughing, a lot.
We did NOT want a traditional wedding- we tried to avoid as many boring and unnecessary parts as we could. For a start, I bought some vintage style wallpaper and handmade as much as possible. The invitations were this amazing paper in a triangle sewed with blue raffia that opened into a square with the details on. The place cards and napkins matched, and I handmade all the bouquets in the same paper. The other flowers on the tables were picked that morning on the farm. We decorated the room the day before the wedding with swags of white organza, fairy lights and masses of ivy, all of which I bought second hand on ebay.
We did away with a wedding cake altogether, and instead asked for a big tower of organic apples that everyone could take away with them! We took my laptop and made our own playlist for the evening, and some of our friends kindly bought their lights and instruments to play for us as well. During the food, we played music from our favourite sci fi films and tv programmes in the background which provided some interesting conversations! We also put some brain teaser questions into each wine glass to keep the conversation moving. No cars, favours or anything else either, and we even asked guests to bring their invitations with them and made a clothes line so they could write their messages and then peg them up!!
Although we kept the dress code simple- we hired no suits and my two bridesmaids chose their own, unmatching dresses, one thing I did NOT go second hand on was my outfit. My dress was from Dolly Couture, and my shoes from Irregular Choice, and my head wear from a shop on ebay!
Our day was full to the brim of laughter. Despite being 28 and 29, we are not serious people. Our 50 guests laughed all day. We added many surprises to the day, including welcoming the guests with tea and cakes, then taking them up to the stone circle ceremony site on the back of a tractor on a hay wagon. The cermony was amazing because it was written entirely by me!
Something we DID do was get married legally the previous day, so on the day we could use any words and get married BY whoever we wanted. (We had to do this because in the UK you are not allowed to get married outside at all, and you cannot have any religious content unless in a church). As it was, we included some lovely christian content, and some very 'us' extras, like honouring the wind by releasing balloons, fire by lighting candles with both our dads etc. AND best of all, one of my bestest and oldest friends performed the ceremony for us. OH, and everyone wore wellies, it was so fun!!
As Neil, the person leading, said 'you may now kiss the bride' the heavens opened and a long and loud thunder storm ensued!! We all were directed by the farmer to run to a small shed and our lovely photographer, Kay, (www.kayransom.com) (who was a tad bemused by us all day I think), took some funny and candid shots! By the time the tractor was able to rumble us back down to the farm, we were ready for more dry photo's, including some using a frame which was soo effective, and then a lovely buffet, speeches, and dancing, then off we all went in our car we didn't hire to live happily ever after.
Oh, and our budget was £5,000. And none of our friends will ever forget it I bet!!