Blog

Claire and James’ rustic Easter wedding in the Cotswolds with an egg hunt for the kids and lots of homemade details

Charlie

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Rustic Easter wedding

What could be more appropriate for this week than a pretty homemade wedding held on Easter Sunday complete with spring flowers and an Easter egg hunt? I hope you agree, so I am delighted to be able to share Claire and James’ beautiful wedding which has all those elements.

Over to Claire…

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“As we’d chosen to have a spring Easter wedding in a barn in the beautiful Cotswolds, we decided that a rustic Easter country themed wedding was for us – nice and relaxed with lots of fun.

April has always been a favourite month of ours and Easter a family favourite time growing up.  As all our family and friends would have to travel, we decided to give them the opportunity to have a mini break to the Cotswolds and an Easter egg hunt sealed the deal!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I’m slightly embarrassed to admit this – but I started planning my wedding day (probably like others) years and years ago!  James (Jim) and I had been together 12 years when we got married so he gave me plenty of time to start a scrapbook (no Pinterest back then!). Some of the thoughts I’d had never changed and made it to being part of the day – particularly the theme.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Our day was rustic country and Easter themed, bursting with creative touches, many of which we’d made ourselves. There were handmade clay birds, beautiful flowers, tree slices, bales of hay, milk churns, birch tealight holders, homemade chutney, chalkboard signposts, handmade stationery and printed linen, planted wellies, rusty letters, old French crates, Easter photo props, a lucky dip and chocolate eggs galore!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“There is so much inspiration out there, but mostly we felt inspired to create a day that reflected our love for nature and relaxed natural style.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“We love the outdoors and spring is my favourite time of the year. As I was growing up I spent a lot of time on farms with many hours mucking out stables and looking after ponies. My dad has always said I should have married a farmer, I never did – but I did get to marry my best friend on a farm instead!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Our wedding was at the gorgeous Kingscote Barn, near Tetbury. We were searching online for rustic barn locations, Jim found Kingscote and the place stole our heart!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“When we first visited Kingscote, we fell in love with the idea that there would be lambs in the fields in spring. It really didn’t take long to know we’d found our venue when we drove down the winding road to this lovely little secluded barn on a farm amidst beautiful green rolling hills – what a view!

We were absolutely overwhelmed when we walked into the barn for the first time – it’s a stunning place. The people running Kingscote Barn are amazing – they have such attention to detail and we knew the day would be magical and just how we wanted it.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

On the morning of their wedding, Claire told me she was feeling “Nervously excited – we were so lucky to have the bank holiday weekend and most of our family and friends joined us from the Friday and Saturday before the weekend. We had a lovely family meal on the Friday night and then met up with more people on the Saturday night for drinks after a lovely relaxing day.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Jim on the other hand, was restless and nervously excited and didn’t know what to do with himself! He remembers walking up to the barn early in the morning with butterflies in his stomach and watching the rain stop and the sun come out and thinking “oh yes”.

Jim, his best man and ushers threw themselves into decorating the barn and in some instances using their imagination and creative licence to make up bits that I’d forgotten to pack…they did a wonderful job!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I remember having one last minute panic as I’d packed my ‘something old’ into my overnight bag at the barn. It was my grandma’s hat pin, a beautiful little horseshoe, which just seemed to perfect and fitting for the day to add into my bouquet. So my lovely bridesmaids came to the rescue and had it ready me for when I arrived at the barn.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I have to admit, dress shopping at the start wasn’t as much fun as I’d been expecting – I was conscious of my size and couldn’t fit into the lovely lace dresses people had in stock to try. In the end I found the amazingly talented Emma Louise Designs of Ascot and set about designing and creating my own bespoke made dress.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Emma helped me design my perfect dress – it was fascinating! For someone who is already quite creative, it was amazing to be able to choose the finer details and add little creative touches – I remember even finding and buying my own little tulle flowers to add to the lace.

I was also able to have the dress made to fit and loose a little during the process.  I’ll never forget the moment and the tears when collecting my dress from Emma, the whole dress experience was amazing and I feel so lucky to have something so unique!  It was a dream come true.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“My shoes were the beautiful Marcie by Harriet Wilde and Emma Louise helped me personalise them with handmade flowers from my dress.

I didn’t think I wanted a veil to begin with – but the more my dress became a reality, the more it seemed just right to have a veil – so much so I remember not wanting to take it off! I chose a longer single tier silk tulle veil – I didn’t want anything layered that would hide the back of the dress, it was so elegant.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I finally chose the perfect side tiara where the little flowers complimented the flowers and lace. It wasn’t until weeks later trying it on again with my veil and my jewellery that I realised how well it matched the bracelet and earrings – it really was all coming together.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“My four bridesmaids wore navy blue dresses which I designed for them with Emma Louise, they were beautifully made and the girls looked stunning – a simple design that suited all of them.  Really early on before starting to make their dresses, I found the corsage flowers – we clipped them onto their sashes and you wouldn’t have known they weren’t part of the dresses!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“To work with the theme, I really wanted a wild country loose style feel, lots of smaller flowers such as Sweet William, white stocks, pink waxflower, ammi, white lilac and freesia. Sara Tuckey at Aqua Flowers was amazing and such good fun, she was a star – so enthusiastic about my theme and knew the venue really well which helped in planning.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Jim opted for a very smart grey three-piece suit from Suits Newbury. He wore an ivory tie and the best man and ushers matched the bridesmaids with navy blue ties. Jim gave them all Scrabble initial cufflinks and matching socks and our lovely florist used some navy blue and white polka dot ribbon around their button holes.

They all looked so smart! Jim’s shoes were his little luxury… I got a beautiful dress but his shoes were amazing! He looked so scrummy I couldn’t stop smiling when I saw him.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“The wedding ceremony was also held at Kingscote Barn. It was decorated with Sara’s amazing flowers, milk churns, clay birds which I’d made, wooden birds, a birdcage for cards, little rustic trays for creme eggs, blackboard signs that my brother-in-law helped me make (I was up until 4am two days before the wedding finishing these!) rustic logs and moss, lots of candles  and a horseshoe!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I remember avidly looking and watching out for Charlie from The Natural Wedding Company’s own special day – I was inspired by your own wedding to have milk churns filled with ammi and spring flowers, outside and in the barn – it just seemed so fitting for the barn that was used as an active farm once day as well.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“The ceremony was amazing, it was the thing I’d personally got myself most nervous about for the day – I’d like to think because it was so important to us. Sara the florist had some old French kilner jars that she’s recovered from France, as well as two large wicker hearts which she decorated with bunches of flowers – they were placed on the balcony at the sides of the ceremony table.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

When Claire first saw Jim she felt “Overwhelmed, I literally froze at the top of the aisle – I couldn’t quite see Jim for the mass of smiley faces looking at my dad and I.

That moment I’m afraid was stolen for just a short while for my dad and I – our harpist was playing a piece that my dad love, and after nearly losing my dad the few months before our wedding, I just remember feeling so lucky to have him walking me down the aisle – I literally clung on to him.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“When I did finally make it to Jim’s side I was smiling like a Cheshire cat and when I first saw him waiting he looked in awe, so happy and just a little teary eyed (sorry Jim!).  He looked gorgeous and scrummy, I felt both in awe and so lucky.  I thought I would cry all the way down the aisle, as I always cry at weddings but actually I had a huge smile on my face the whole day – I was just so, so happy!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“As I arrived at the front, we both grinned at each other, we were just both so excited and happy holding each others hands.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“We hired a harpist to play some beautiful music for us for the ceremony and into the drinks reception and through dinner. I was at first a little sceptical of this, but on reflection it was one of the best decisions made for the day – she was so talented and everyone enjoyed listening to her and trying to guess which song she was playing.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“She played a range of modern music as well as some traditional classic pieces. Two pieces in particular still bring a lump to our throats; ‘Canon in D, Pachelbel’ was played for my dad to walk me in and has been his favourite piece that he has even learnt to play on the piano himself.

Then ‘Heartbeats’ by Jose Gonzalez – if you’ve never heard this played on a harp then you must try to – I get tears coming to my eyes every time – she played this whilst we signed the register – amazing!!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“We also had ‘Make You Feel My Love’ by Adele and ‘She’ by Elvis Costello played whilst we signed the register and then we left to ‘Better Together’ by Jack Johnson – all on the harp. We opted for all the long text options just to make it as long as possible and had two readings because we didn’t want it to speed past – ‘Union’ by Robert Fulghum and a more lighthearted ‘Marriage by Anonymous’.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I remember winking quite a lot at Jim to get him to look at me when he was saying his vows as he was nervously looking at the registrar – quite sweet really! I also did a little whoop for everyone when we were finally man and wife – everyone knew how long I’d waited for that moment!!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“After the ceremony, there isn’t always a lot for the guests to do, apart from drink. We had supplied litres of Pimms and elderflower spritzers but wanted our guests to enjoy a little family fun.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“We made the decision early on that children had to come, they’re an essential part of weddings and I remember enjoying so many weddings as a child!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Easter wouldn’t be complete without an Easter egg hunt so the boys carefully orchestrated the hiding of lots of eggs that I’d been buying over the few weeks and avoiding to eat before the wedding! Family fun – mostly for the children to be entertained but I noticed a few adults join in the hunt too!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I’d bought little baskets and painted up a sign, but it was kept quite simple and just a race to collect as many eggs as possible. One of my mini guests was a little boy called Charlie, he was wearing his post little wedding kilt and kept bringing out eggs and chocolate goodies from his sporran for people throughout the meal – so cute!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“There were plenty of creme Eggs (my favourites) dotted around the reception barn and we also had a mini afternoon tea canapés to play homage to Jim’s Cornish background – lots of scones and sandwiches.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“My DIY inspired rustic blackboard signs were cut by my brother-in-law – he cut them and I painted, chalked and mounted them – I was up until 4am two days before the wedding finishing these off on the kitchen floor! I was originally going to burn the letters into the wood, but failed to make this work – so the blackboard paint was a life saviour!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I wanted to inject a bit of spring into my rustic natural theme so potted up spring bulbs with moss into little rusty buckets – these were dotted throughout the barn, in windowsills, at the bar, any surface I could find really. I vividly remember picking moss off stone farm walls with my florist Sara so I could take it home with me to use in the pots!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I bought some amazing silver birch log candle holders from a lady in the Lakes, I met so many amazing people buying through Etsy, ebay and Not On The High Street – this lady in particular was getting married herself so there were lots of stories shared!  That’s what I loved most about planning, meeting all the lovely people!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I really wanted a centrepiece in the reception barn which people saw as they arrived, Sara had just the thing early on; a beautiful old French crate which she potted with spring flowers and little wooden birds nests fitted to the piece for holding mini eggs / mini crème eggs, all finished off with lots of moss and two little love bird hearts I’d painted with chalkboard paint.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“What was so nice is that I got to take this home and plant it all in my garden as a lovely memory. It’s all these special little touches that I never want to forget and what made it special for others as well.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I used a large frame to mount our table plan. I used chicken wire and attached it to the open frame and then attached each piece of the fabric table layout onto it but sewing each piece onto the chicken wire – I was sad to disassemble this after the wedding, but it’s back to its former self showing off wedding photos now.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I had made all of our wedding stationery, designing our own monogram which featured everywhere possible – I used printable linen, corrugated kraft card, pearl buttons and net fabric to make up my invites. We had order of the days, printed linen framed signs dotted around the barn and personalised menu seating cards.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“I made some clay birds to add to the rustic natural theme – I vividly remember Jim sitting out the front of the house by the garage making little legs for them! They sat proudly on every table (and not all made it home! They were very popular!). I also bought rusty metal numbers and attached these to painted blocks of wood for each of the table numbers.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“We had real bales of hay in the reception barn, in one area I’d planted old hunter welly boots with spring bulbs and they sat in front of two large photo frames, filled with black and white family photos and other guests’ wedding photos, particularly photos of people who couldn’t be with us on the day – this was much admired.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“On the other side was the ‘photo studio’ again bales of hay, a lucky dip with real hay and some free drink vouchers.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“We had a gorgeous three course meal by Crown Catering. We gave everyone choices with their RSVP so people got exactly what they wanted to eat – I loved the idea of giving people the choice and it made it all the more special. A favourite moment was my heart shaped steak, not intentional and completely accidental – but meant to be!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“The children were all given jelly bean plush little bunny rabbits and Easter sticker books to keep them entertained throughout dinner. Then in the evening we had cones of chips and hand carved pork rolls with plenty of yummy cheese and biscuits with our homemade chutney.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Our cake – now called ‘Lacey’ was made by Diana at Regal Wedding Cakes – three flavours: fruit, chocolate and lemon. She decorated the cake with traditional royal icing and hand piped all the lace to exactly match the lace from my dress – one of the benefits of having your dress made – keeping the bits of fabric!”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

One of Claire’s favourite moments of the day was “Our first dance and looking up at my dad and others on the balcony and them beaming back at us.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

“Our photographer was Neale James. He was super professional and has a gorgeous style to his photos. It was really simple working with Neale and he put us both at ease for our engagement shoot. Following the wedding it was really fun to work with Neale to sneak some creative touches of my own into the print of the wedding album, such as the order of the day, our monogram and our favourite moments from the speeches.”

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

Since their wedding Claire has been busy setting up her own business inspired by her wedding (oh and doing up a house and preparing for the arrival of their first baby!):

“I’ve always had a passion for clay (since school art lessons) and made a clay photo canvas for my sister for Christmas in 2012. I’m currently in the process of rebranding to Millen & Finch and updating the business so that I can start to introduce other clay pieces. I’m going to be creating a clay wedding plan for a friend in June who is having a rustic wedding.” You can check out Claire’s Facebook page in the meantime.

Claire and James' rustic Easter wedding – photography http://www.nealejames.com/

A big thank you to Claire and James for sharing their beautiful Easter wedding with us, and to their photographer Neale James.

{ Details }

Photographer: Neale James
Venue: The Kingscote Barn
Dress: Emma Louise Design of Ascot
Shoes: Harriet Wilde
Tiara: Olivier Laudus
Flowers: Aqua
Harpist: Amanda Whiting
Catering: Crown Catering
Wedding Cake: Regal Wedding Cakes

Comments

Claire on 21. April, 2014

Thank you Charlie for the amazing write up and feature – such a beautiful way to remember such an amazing day! I hope the photos and ideas inspire others. Thanks xx

A selection of real weddings featured on UK wedding blogsBerkshire Wedding Photography on 24. April, 2014

[…] Claire & James‘ rustic Easter wedding, celebrated at Kingscote Barn in the Cotswolds, was featured on The […]

Leave a comment

By commenting you are accepting our privacy policy

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to blog