Allie and Tom’s handmade 1930’s inspired country wedding ~ part one
Charlie / 14 December 2011
It is another of those exciting days where I get to share a wedding from one of my readers with you all. I’ve been in touch with the lovely Allie for a while now and I was even lucky enough to make her wedding guestbook!
It was lovely to hear that The Natural Wedding Company blog was a source of daily inspiration for Allie when she was planning her wedding, and she found a number of suppliers via the directory. Don’t forget to check back tomorrow for part two and a full list of suppliers.
Allie and Tom got married on a very rainy Saturday in September at her parent’s home in Somerset.
Allie told me that her parents was the only place for their wedding. Getting married in the village I grew up in, surrounded by people who watched me grow up just felt really right. We wanted a wedding where all our friends and family and village people could help out. I think we could only have done that at my parent’s home.
I knew straight away that I wanted a marquee in my parent’s field. My parents and us worked tirelessly over a year to transform our junk-filled field into a wedding venue. A lot of friends came down a few days before the wedding to help, and the whole village worked on it. It looked amazing!
I love these ‘getting ready’ photos – this is what a handmade wedding is all about for me.
Images taken by Tom’s mum
Allie told me that the first image she had in her head when she started planning her wedding was the wedding scene from the BBC’s Pride and Prejudice where the girls are all out with arches of flowers and everyone is laughing. Originally I was going to walk across the fields with all my girls to the church, but the bad weather and heels put pay to that. I wanted our wedding to look like country weddings have always looked.
For Tom, the morning of their wedding was spent in “glorious comfort” (Allie tells me) whilst Allie had a what can only be described as one of the most stressful sounding wedding morning’s ever! About ten of us were getting ready in my house, the house looked like a wedding bomb had hit it! Guests and family kept rocking up at our house and seeing me in my dress and to add to that, our shower fell through the ceiling whilst I was at the hairdressers!
Although Allie told me she wished she’d got ready at a hotel, she also added that she wouldn’t have changed her “chaotic” house for the world. I’m pleased she feels that way – this is something I think you have to embrace if you’re going to have a wedding at home.
As Allie got into her planning a 1930s look began to emerge, so she took inspiration from this era for her hairstyle. I had much longer hair when I got engaged but had it cut into a bob on the spur of the moment after seeing it in a wedding magazine. I love the vintage 1930’s look and it went with my dress. Her mum’s local hairdresser set Allie’s hair in pin curls, which were then brushed out to create the wave.
She did her own make-up after having a tutorial at Bobbi Brown – Allie said that originally she’d wanted a softer colour on her lips (she usually wears red), but had real trouble finding anything else that suited her. In the end she went with a berry red. Just go with what makes you feel like you, I thought I should be going for toned down and more neutral, but really I had to have a nice bright colour to feel like I looked like me.
Tom and his boys hired blue suits as their budget didn’t stretch to buying new suits for them all. He also carried a vintage pocketwatch that he got for his 18th birthday. The best man was Tom’s oldest friend Matt, a graphic designer who also made our awesome invitations.
Allie wore a beautiful wedding dress from Monsoon and a mantilla veil from Etsy. I found my wedding dress two weeks after I got engaged! I was trying on dresses for a laugh when my mum handed me the dress – I actually hated it on the hanger, but as soon as I tried it on I knew I had to have it. I felt like a Flower Fairy!
I was going to have a birdcge veil but I wasn’t feeling very bridal in my dress. I was browsing Etsy one night and found these beautiful mantilla veils made by Rohm bridal – I ordered an elbow length veil without even trying one on. It was the best wedding decision I made, I loved it so much and Rohm are amazing – the lace is handmade, I would really recommend them.
As well as the beautiful mantilla veil, Allie wore a flower headpiece that was cut from her mum’s headpiece that she got married in – how lovely. And the bit I love most, is that they did this on the morning of the wedding!
Allie had three bridesmaids – her younger sister Elena, her best girl friend Saoirse, and her little cousin Isabel. I also had a ‘bridesgay’ (that’s male bridal attendant to the vicar!) as there was no way I was doing this without my best friend Carl by my side.
The church was decorated by a team of flower arrangers from the village, with cream colours chosen by Allie.
Image taken by Tom’s mum
It’s an old village tradition that there are a group of ladies who do the wedding flowers. We spent a great afternoon with everyone working together to make everything look really nice. It was lovely to be able to spend those last few single days with a group of women who’d all been through this and to get some last minute advice!
I love the beautiful arch of flowers over the church door – it’s so welcoming – although Allie tells me she got stung by killer wedding wasp! I’m sure it must be good luck.
The bouquets, corsages and buttonholes were made by Musgrove Flowers, which is based at the hospital where Allie’s mum works. Allie wanted a muted, relaxed, vintage inspired look. Edwina at Musgrove Flowers was the most lovely lady ever, she took down all the details of my wedding dress and my vision for how the day would look. She immediately got what I wanted, which was “as though you’d wandered around your garden picking the finest blooms.”
As well as her dad to walk her down the aisle, Allie was also assisted by the lovely and ever-so cute Polly! This sweet Bedlington Terrier is an important member of Allie’s family – and not to mention rather gorgeous. When me and dad were waiting outside for the car she was sniffing around, so we grabbed her lead and she came with us. No one was surprised when they saw her walking me down the aisle with Dad. She was as good as gold throughout the whole service.
Allie chose a piece of Irish accordian music called ‘Blackbird‘ to walk into the church to. When Allie first sent me her wedding photos and details I sat there looking at all these beautiful photographs whilst listening to this tune – it’s so lovely and original, and so incredible upbeat. When I saw Tom for the first time I was just really happy! As soon as I heard the first beat of the music I just wanted to skip in!
I was shaking a bit at first but as soon as we sang the first hymn I calmed down. I was just so pleased to see all my friends and family crammed into the tiny church that I couldn’t stop looking and waving at everyone. The whole service was such a happy time, I laughed the whole way through it.
For Allie and Tom they wanted their ceremony to reflect the natural theme of their wedding and to be a reflection of them as a couple. They spent a lot of time to get it just right, including a reading in Ancient Greek by their friend John. Tom is a Classicist so we had a lovely reading from the Odyssey (we did provide a translation!) – I really loved the tree motif in it.
To other brides I would say just take the time to make your ceremony what you want. I think it’s important to make it a chance to reflect yourselves and how you see your marriage. This is the one thing I would advice other girls to take time and make personal to you. The first hymn had my all-time favourite line in it “no foes shall stay his might, though he with giants fight” – this sums up how we feel about our marriage and the strength we have together.
Allie made paper cones and filled them with petal confetti from Shropshire Petals – these were pegged to a washing line hung up in the church ready for the confetti toss.
Such a cute picture! This is one of my favourites.
Somehow I have to stop here – both because it’s a hugely long post otherwise, plus I want to keep you anticipating the next part. Do check back tomorrow for part two of Allie and Tom’s beautiful wedding!
All images unless other wise stated are taken by Tom Moriarty.
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