Real Weddings

love & lace. justin alexander for a vintage inspired wedding at the stables – abby & matt

10th September 2015 | Rachel Parry

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Today’s teenage sweethearts tied the knot during a traditional church ceremony and vintage inspired reception after more than ten years together.

Picking an elegant dove grey and pale pink palette to complement their chosen vintage theme, bride Abby then focused on her own attire picking a stunning lace Justin Alexander gown for her moment in the limelight.

Images by Phil Vaughan Photography.

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abby says:  Matt and I had been together for almost ten years when Matt proposed to me two years ago – it was a week before my 24th birthday. Matt asked me to marry him when we were in our cottage on our own. It was just perfect as I’m not someone who likes a lot of attention, but saying that I loved every part of the wedding day being all about us.

I always loved the idea of a spring wedding with the blossom still on the trees, so when the church and the venue were both free on 30th May 2015, we thought let’s get it booked! Sadly not all of mine and Matt’s grandparents, and one of my uncles, are still with us but all the way through the planning I had this strong feeling that they were watching over us and would make sure the sun was shining for our day. The Friday before and Sunday after the wedding it rained but sure enough on the Saturday from start to finish, it was sunny.

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Ever since I was a little girl I knew that I would love to get married at the Wesley Church in Epworth, close to where we live. The service there was just beautiful with my little sister Josie, who was my maid of honour, doing a beautiful reading for us.

We had looked at a few potential reception venues before we found The Stables in High Melton, Doncaster, but when we looked around it we knew it was the one. It has such a lovely courtyard where the guests enjoyed canapés and fizz and it looked gorgeous lit up by lanterns at night.

Our whole wedding was about our family and friends coming together for mine and Matt’s special day. We wanted to create a relaxed wedding that had a vintage feel with soft pastel colours as we both love that style.

We chose a dove grey and soft pink colour scheme as the two colours looked so pretty and delicate together. The bridesmaids wore soft grey dresses and the groomsmen and best men had grey suits with silver waistcoats. We also had grey and pink bunting made by Bunting Boutique for the courtyard.

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I took my mum and sister with me when I went shopping for my dress. We had been to a few shops before we picked to go to Emily’s Bridal Wear in Sheffield. I was starting to feel disappointed that I hadn’t found ‘the one’ but Emily found me my dream dress – it was the first one that she had picked and was by the designer Justin Alexander. As soon as I walked out my mum and Josie started crying and when Emily showed me in the mirror I just knew that this was the dress that I wanted to marry Matt in. I just loved the back detail and little lace cap sleeves. I wanted a little bow at the back and the girls at Emily’s designed one and fitted it onto the belt of the dress. I cannot praise the girls at Emily’s enough they are all so kind and caring and when I went to collect my dress for the last time we were nearly all in tears!

Matt’s suit was hired from Jeff Banks and looked so smart and lovely. He originally didn’t want a suit with tails, but when he tried it on he loved it. The groomsmen’s suits were also hired from Jeff Banks, they had a silver tie and Matt had a charcoal one.

My bridesmaids wore lovely dove grey, one-shoulder, long dresses from Monsoon – they all looked beautiful!

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To transport us on the wedding day, we hired an old vintage Rolls Royce from Tyson Cars. It was navy blue and cream, beautiful inside and out and fitted with our traditional but vintage theme.

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We used Phil Vaughan Photography to capture our day. Phil and his wife Nic, were brilliant and helped create some beautiful, relaxed and natural shots. They were so friendly and professional and we would definitely recommend them to others.

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During the planning stages, flowers were very important to me as I just love them. My florist (and friend) Dawn of Poppybella, used David Austin roses, Patience little pink rosebuds, hydrangeas and Sweet Avalanche roses which she tied with some velvet that I had bought from Liberty’s when my mum and sister took me for a surprise trip to London before the wedding. Dawn also tied a gold horseshoe onto my bouquet, which was my something old (it was from my late nanny’s wedding cake). Dawn also did a floral arrangement in a vintage bike in the courtyard and hydrangeas in little milk churns on the outside tables. My mum and I bought wooden crates which we filled with pink and white flowers and dotted around the courtyard.

Dawn provided the flowers for the centrepieces too which she put on glass vintage cake stands, which she rents out among other vintage items. Every table was named after a flower and then we scatted the seed of that particular flower around the table. Our seat covers were provided by Forever Sitting Pretty and our stationery was by Noah’s Nuptials.

Further decorations included some ‘A’ and’ M’ light up letters from Doris Loves, which looked fab around the disco, and we bought different mercury tea light holders, which we had around the tables at night, which looked very pretty. We also put toiletries in the ladies and gents loos so guests could freshen up and bought flip flops from Primark which guests could swap into at night.

Matt’s mum made our female guests ‘feel good bags’ from spotty grey fabric as favours, which were really cute. For the men we bought vintage lottery card holders and a lottery ticket. The children were given activity bags that I’d made up with bubbles and little gifts in to keep them entertained.

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Our cake was made by Julie at Treats Heaven and it tasted as good as it looked. We had a lime and coconut layer, carrot cake, chocolate fudge and red velvet. It was so pretty and just what we wanted having seen lots of designs on Pinterest, we decided on a ruffle one with flowers on.

In the evening we had a disco which was brilliant as it got everybody up dancing. Our first dance was to Hey Ho by the Lumineers and my friend Viv taught me, Josie, my mum and all the girls from my work a dance to Proud Mary by Tina Turner, which was so much fun. To provide a little extra entertainment to hired a photo booth from Booth Revolution too.

Special touches on the day included personalised confetti bags and cones and presenting gifts to our parents, bridesmaids and groomsmen, to thank them for their help. Also, Daisy our dog is like our baby so we made sure that we nipped home before we went to the reception venue so that we could have a picture with her.

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Following our wedding, we would definitely recommend our venue to others. The Stables staff were so brilliant and nothing was too much to ask. Sally the wedding planner was so helpful and they all helped create the fun, relaxed day that we wanted.

When thinking about our favourite parts of the day we would have to say the church service, which we loved and that was what the whole day was really about. When I saw Matt as I walked down the aisle I had to look away as was nearly in tears, so too was Matt – it is a very special memory. We also loved the car trip to The Stables as we had chance to just be together. The first dance was amazing too as we were originally nervous about that as we’re not people who normally like the lime light but we were just so relaxed and happy that we didn’t care.

After the wedding we went on a minimoon to a cottage in the Cotswolds, which was so relaxing and just what we both needed. We are then looking to book Sorrento in October as we wanted something else to look forward to and we can’t wait!

My top tip to other Brides Up North would be to enjoy every part of the planning, as well as your special day, as it really does go so quick. Remember that at the end of the day it’s just about the two of you making a commitment in front of all the people you love and care about – don’t get nervous, just enjoy every second of it. I know it sounds cheesy, but it’s the best day of your life!

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