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Nik and Chris' coastal farm wedding

Did you see yesterday’s beautiful wedding? If not, you can view it here – it’s full of lovely inspiration for a truly down-to-earth wedding, and lots of sound advice from bride Nik.

As promised, today I have Nik and Chris’ wedding film, which beautifully brings to life a glimpse of their wedding. Their film was created by their artist friend and film maker Pat Hurst, and Nik told me it’s her favourite memento of the day.

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Nik and Chris’ chilled out rustic coastal farm wedding – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Rustic coastal farm wedding

In the past few years of running my business I have been lucky enough to meet and make some lovely friends, many of whom I know will be lifelong friends. I met Nik, today’s bride, two years ago, when she won a place on a cut flower course via the blog and we spent a day together learning how to grow and arrange homegrown flowers.

Since then I’ve followed Nik’s adventures as she has moved to Wales and set up her own business, and last summer when I was heavily pregnant I saw her again when we holidayed in Cardigan. It is an absolute pleasure to share Nik and Chris’ wedding with you all, it is utterly beautiful but completely down-to-earth and full of love and laughter – which seems to me a true reflection of this sweet and kind couple.

Chalkboard wedding sign – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Nik and Chris’ chilled out rustic coastal farm wedding – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Rustic bride with chicken – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Nik and Chris got married last July on the farm where they live in Wales, with a beautiful outdoor ceremony, champagne on the beach, and a chilled out barn reception. If you are having any wobbles about staying true to yourselves when planning your wedding, or whether it’s possible to have a beautiful wedding on a budget, then this is the wedding for you.

By now, if you’re a regular blog reader you’ll have also probably recognised Nik as she was one of our TNWC Real Brides – you can read all about her wedding planning and handmade details here.

White lace bridesmaid dresses – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

This wedding was captured by Pete Cranston, who is one of our recommended photographers on the directory.  Do pop back to the blog tomorrow as I have Nik and Chris’ wedding video to share, which brings to life their wedding day

Over to Nik to…

Rustic barn wedding venue – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Rustic barn wedding tables – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Bride on a horse – photography http://www.petecranston.com/

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Izzy Burton Illustration

This lovely TNWC Real Bride has become someone I consider as a friend, so it’s been a real treat to hear all about her wedding day (and I’ve been buried in all her ‘official’ wedding photos recently which will soon be gracing these blog pages).  Nik and Chris had, what I think was a very chilled out and down-to-earth wedding (two in fact!) back in July, with champagne on the beach and lots of animal appearances on the farm where they live in Wales.

Over to Nik…

Pete Cranston Photography http://www.petecranston.com/

Six Months On

Recently we celebrated our six month wedding anniversary (ok, I know, not technically an anniversary, but nice to acknowledge it all the same). By a happy coincidence, it turned out our wedding caterer, Trehale Farm, were hosting their annual wassail on the same night, so it seemed quite fitting for us to go along to toast the apple trees, drink cider, eat great food and commemorate our first wedded milestone.

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Izzy Burton illustration

Just like TNWC Real Bride Emma last week, Nik has only a few weeks to go until her wedding. Her and Mr-to-be Chris have been busy over the past few months with lots of DIY projects for their coastal farm wedding in Wales, and nothing has changed for this creative duo in these final few weeks before their big day.

Today Nik’s got a fab round-up of what they’ve been up to recently, including a lovely reveal of their beautifully restored VW Beetle, making a wedding swing, and some ‘before’ pictures of the barn that will host their wedding reception.

Over to Nik…

Sea view

The farm is abuzz with life at the moment – not only have the flowers and trees begun to burst forth with summer colour to brighten the place up, but we too are frantically whizzing around doing odd jobs, trimming and pruning, clearing and tidying and generally making preparations for our wedding day on the 11th July.

There’s been so much going on it’s impossible for me to pick just one topic to write about this month, so I thought I’d share a few of the projects we’ve been getting on with.

Reg Returns!

One of the most exciting parts of our wedding day is the fact that Reginald, our vintage VW Beetle, gets to act as wedding car.

Chris has owned him for over 10 years (longer than he’s known me!).  One of my earliest memories of Chris is seeing him get out of Reg in a car park and thinking ‘ooh, nice car…hang on… nice owner!’  Unfortunately, when we first got engaged, Reg was rather looking his age after a few years in a damp garage and was in desperate need of a Gok Wan style makeover.

VW Beetle pre restoration

We sent him off to the paint shop for some TLC and he has come back looking pretty fabulous indeed!

'Reg' the VW Beetle restored ready to be a wedding car

I’m so looking forward to cruising down the winding lanes towards the sea after our ceremony, with tin cans rattling behind us and our ‘Just Married’ sign in the window!

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Izzy Burton illustration

Opening up the blog to other real brides-to-be has been one of the best decisions I’ve made.  I hope you are enjoying and benefiting from the experiences, ideas and handmade projects they have been sharing here.  I’m so pleased with the outcome of this new feature that I will be looking for new TNWC Real Brides to start blogging in the autumn – if you’re interested stay tuned as I’ll be posting details on the blog shortly.

We are joined today we have the lovely Nik who is planning a relaxed coastal farm wedding at her home in Wales.  She’s sharing details of the fab hot chocolate wedding favours they’ve been making for their guests, and also some more personal thoughts on how she’s found planning a wedding alone a challenge.  

I hope you enjoy it – over to Nik…

Arranging Favours and Thank You’s – Our Last Big Job!

With six weeks to go until the wedding, we’ve been turning our efforts to the tasks on our ‘to do’ list that are able to be done in advance.  There seems to be so many things that have to wait until the week/night before the wedding, and it kind of felt as though we’d hit a bit of a ‘lull’ in the preparations, until I remembered that we hadn’t really started on one of the most important tasks – favours and gifts for our guests!  Whoops.

Heart-Warming Hot Chocolate Favours

Hand illustrated 'let love grow' wedding mug favours

From the word go, we wanted our favours to be something practical that would be used on the day of the wedding and that could be used again and again afterwards.

After much deliberation, I had a bit of a lightbulb moment and we decided that we would make hot chocolate stirring spoons for each of our guests, complete with a DIY hand-illustrated mug to commemorate the day (inspired by the work of illustrator OhNoRachio!, whose work I covet and purchase often!).

Hand illustrated 'let love grow' wedding mug favours

To add a little nod to the country we now call home, we arranged for Folksy seller Rescue & Revive to handstamp vintage teaspoons with the words ‘Llwy Garu’ –Welsh for lovespoon! Lovespoons are an old Welsh tradition, although they are typically carved out of wood.

Handstamped vintage 'lovespoon' teaspoon wedding favours

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Izzy Burton illustration

I hope you are all enjoying reading the wedding adventures of our TNWC Real Brides – they are all planning such varied but personal days and I can’t believe that it’s almost time for some of them to actually get married!  Today we have the lovely Nik who is planning a two part wedding and she’s got some fab ideas for being thrifty with your wedding flowers….enjoy!

Tick Tock!

Before I launch into today’s post, I just wanted announce that there’s only just over two months to go ’til we say “I do”!!

This is both terrifying and very exciting.  On the one hand, soon I will be married to the love of my life, which is indescribably surreal and wonderful; but on the other hand, I’m a terrible coordinator in charge of the biggest day of my own life, and am constantly terrified that I’m forgetting something important!  I hope this is a normal fear, and I keep reminding myself that we want a simple, relaxed day and that the ONLY important thing is that we come away from it married to one another.

All Things Floral

This month, I thought I’d give you a rundown of the many ways we plan to feature flowers/plants in our wedding celebrations.  With our wedding being split into two parts, two days apart, it was crucial that we came up with floristry solutions that would ensure we could decorate both our venues, but that also fit within our relatively small budget of £200.

TIn can floral arrangement

Fortunately, I’m not a fan of huge arrangements or expensive blooms – I much prefer a rustic, simple, ‘thrown in a tin can’ kind of feel and adore wild flowers and abundant foliage, so I’m happy to go with a ‘whatever I can get my hands on’ approach.

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Izzy Burton illustration

Welcome to our second TNWC Real Brides guest post of the week!  Today we’ve got the lovely Nik to tell us all about her beautiful DIY wedding invitations and how they created their wedding website.  I’m a little bit jealous because I love the style of Nik and Chris’ invitations and think they fit so well with their coastal farm wedding.

If you’ve not read Nik’s first few guest posts, you should first read about her plans for their relaxed coastal farm wedding, and her experience of choosing an ethical wedding dress.

One of the first jobs we tackled upon choosing our chosen wedding venue was our invitations.  Our announcement of plans for a summer wedding was immediately met with panic from several relatives and friends about potential holiday clashes.  Getting the invites out six months in advance gave everyone plenty of time to plan their hols around the wedding, and has meant that we’ve only had one clash resulting in absent friends on the day.

Our wedding celebrations will be split into two very different parts: a very small ceremony with 25 close family and friends on the farm where we live in Pembrokeshire; and a big all day reception two days later in our home county of West Yorkshire.  This gives us the best of both worlds: a relaxed, intimate ceremony where we can focus on the day and what it means, but also the opportunity to celebrate our marriage with our wider network of friends, which is very important to us.

Ceremony Invites

Farm inspired DIY wedding invitations

We planned to DIY our invites from the word go: we wanted them to be very personal, I wanted them printed on ‘green’ paper and Chris is a graphic/web designer so it seemed silly not to take advantage of that!  However, in the end, we decided to buy our ceremony invites ‘off the rack’ as we realised that we just couldn’t print them at home without compromising on the quality and appearance.  Lela of doodlelove was fantastic and worked with us to create a complementary design to match our theme, even incorporating the little chicken illustration that has sort of become our invitation mascot!

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