Though the temperatures outdoors are dropping, we have something guaranteed to warm up your day – the Moroccan themed wedding of Jen and Marc. Taking inspiration from her travels in North Africa, bride Jen chose vibrant colours and authentic décor, such as ornate metal lanterns, to style their big day.
We love the warm rich tones that feature and also have a huge soft spot for Jen’s Maggie Sottero gown and gorgeous bouquet!
Though Jen says she felt the pressure when planning her big day, we think she did a sterling job!
With images by Kyle Hassall Photography.
jen says: Marc proposed when we were on holiday in Barbados. It was completely unexpected!
We got married on 15th August because Marc’s dad offered us the use of his beautiful garden for a marquee wedding and so it had to be a summer date to accommodate UK weather! I didn’t want to spend too long planning the wedding and felt I could turn it around within eight months.
Our ceremony was at Chester Town Hall. We chose it because it was close to Marc’s dad’s house where our reception would be reception.
The wedding had a very loose North Africa/Morocco theme. I really wanted to incorporate such influences into our traditional English country wedding as I lived in the Middle East and North Africa for a time and still travel there. The colour scheme was slightly out of control as I’m a big fan of bright colours! I wanted all the flowers and décor to be warm and bright. So orange appeared to be the dominant colour but it was more of an evolution than a conscious choice.
My dress was by Maggie Sottero and I bought it from Sense and Sensibility in Stockport. My only fixed idea was that I did not want to wear a strapless dress. I wanted something ornate and beaded which my dress definitely was!
Marc only decided on his suit a week before the wedding – which I think he found quite stressful. It was Marks & Spencer’s Saville Row collection.
I had six very different bridesmaids, one of whom was a male, so I asked them to choose any dress/suit they liked in grey and I contributed some money towards the cost. I really wanted the wedding to be as casual as possible.
Our photographer was Kyle Hassall and he was absolutely amazing. His photos were fabulous and everyone commented how nice he was. Considering how much time you spend with your photographer this is a really important element to consider!
I pretty much gave my florists Bec and Francesca, at Fletcher and Foley, free reign when it came to the flowers. In addition to the bouquets and button holes, the florists wound flower garlands around the marquee poles.
The rest of the decorations in the marquee were provided by the marquee company – Posh Frocks and Wellies, who were amazing! Everything else, all the signs, the extra decorations etc. were a huge tribute to all the unsolicited help we were given by our friends and family, who arrived the day before, and even on the day of the wedding, to help finish everything off.
I bought the favour boxes really early but never considered what to put in them. Luckily my sister found a local shop selling pick n’ mix the day before the wedding so all our guests were given a little sweet treat.
We had six wedding cakes! All made by friends and family. We coordinated flavours but I left decorations up to them.
For our main wedding meal we served up a hog roast as thought this was an easy way to feed a lot of people. It was taken care of by Big 5 Catering. At the end of the night the local village fish and chip van provided late night snacks.
When it came to the entertainment, we decided on wedding band The Cover Cats, who are based in Liverpool. We listened to their clips on YouTube and they were really nice on the phone. I think it took about 15 minutes to make the decision to hire them. Our wedding playlist when the band wasn’t playing was an amalgamation of input from all our guests but in particular Marc’s friend Rich really helped bring it together.
Looking back I don’t think I could choose a favourite part of the day. From beginning to end it was amazing. Not only getting married to Marc, but also seeing my friends and family who came from all around the world to be with us.
My sister Caroline and her husband bought us a three-day honeymoon trip to Madrid. She spared no expense and it made me wish I could go back to when I was a bridesmaid at her wedding and do a much better job!
I did find planning a wedding stressful so my top tip to other Brides Up North would be to accept help from people who offer it and don’t be talked into thinking hiring a wedding planner is an unnecessary expense. Towards the end I hired a wedding day coordinator but I should have drafted in help much earlier. The stress of organizing a DIY wedding (especially as I work down south during the week) was very stressful.
My second tip is to get out by yourself on the morning of the wedding to have a chance to reflect and take a deep breath. I went for a run to relax and spend some time alone. The ceremony was not until 4pm but every single minute after I returned from the run was filled.