While for some brides there is nothing better than a ‘ready-made’ venue that requires minimal décor and details, others want to go all out on the creative touches for their big day.
Tatum, the star of today’s real wedding, falls into the latter category, for she craved a blank space to transform into the perfect setting for her and beau Steve’s rustic celebrations. And transform she did, filling a beautiful barn in West Yorkshire with tree slices, hessian and lace covered jars, decorative wooden pallets and beautiful blooms galore!
In line with her dream of a relaxed, rural big day, Tatum switched a traditional sit-down wedding breakfast in place of a fish and chip supper and treated guests to outdoor games, live entertainment, a quirky photo booth and beautifully presented sweet cart.
So, ladies, if you’re dotty for details, prepare to be inspired…
With images by Matt Thompson Photography
tatum says: We got engaged on 27th December 2014, at Burton in Lonsdale. We had planned a child-free weekend away in a cottage. Steve made the whole place look lovely with candles everywhere making a path to the sofa where a little parcel was waiting – it was a lovely photo album of our happy memories the final photo was my ring! I said yes!
Our wedding was on 23rd September 2016, at Oakwell Hall, West Yorkshire, which is a museum and barn. We wanted to get married somewhere we could do everything ourselves without being dictated to about food etc. I love organising so Oakwell’s barn was ideal. It was the one and only venue we looked at and I knew it was perfect straight away.
We had a rustic themed wedding. Everyone has their perfect wedding in their head and it’s always been what I had in mind.
We chose a grey colour scheme as this seemed to go nicely with the flowers, and my bridesmaids were all happy with the colour choice too.
I am very fussy when it comes to choosing clothes so I spent ages trying on wedding dresses and just didn’t like anything I liked. I was starting to feel really disheartened. My last boutique booking was at Mia Sposa in Huddersfield – we were warmly welcomed by the staff and was told to have a look around and pick out some dressed I’d like to try. I went straight to ‘the dress’ I was told that dress was only there for the weekend for a designer event – I fell in love as soon as I put it on. My dress was ivory sweetheart-neck, lace topped design with a tulle skirt.
Steve wore a navy blue suit with a checked tweed waistcoat and tie from Antich & Sons, in Huddersfield. The groomsmen wore the same suits as Steve but with navy waistcoats and a tweed tie.
My bridesmaids wore grey dresses from an online shop that were altered to perfection at Mia Sposa.
On the day of the wedding my dad and I travelled to the venue in a black baby Bentley.
Our photographer was Matt Thompson. Matt was amazing at making us feel relaxed on our wedding day – he didn’t keep us away from our guests too long and thrives on getting amazing natural un-posed shots, which is what we wanted. After our wedding his personal touches were lovely, he hand-delivered our images along with a bottle of prosecco. We would highly recommend Matt to other couples.
For my wedding flowers, I carried a natural hand-tied bouquet with rustic pink roses and lavender, provided by Woo B Woo.
Décor-wise, our centrepieces and were rustic jam jars and tea cups filled with flowers and tea lights. We had the walls of the barn laced with hessian and lace bows all done be the amazing Woo B Woo.
We had ‘his & her’ favours: little bags with heart-shaped bath bombs inside for the ladies and personalised mints for the men. The children had little favour boxes with bits to keep them busy at the tables.
We had a very simple three-tier wedding cake with hessian ribbon and bunting topper, which was made by a company called Rock Cottage Cakes.
We wanted a very chilled wedding and so didn’t like the idea of being sat down for a formal meal. Instead, we decided to have a fish and chip supper served from a vintage truck outside followed by ice cream. Our evening caterers were called Cow & Cake, and were amazing. They served pie and peas and lots of lovely afternoon tea type dessert treats.
As entertainment during the ceremony we had a violinist, who also played for us during the drinks reception. For the rest of the afternoon we had an acoustic singer which added to the chilled-out atmosphere we wanted. At our evening reception, we had a DJ playing music that people had requested on our RSVPs.
We hired lighting for the dance floor from a company called The White Bulb, who we would highly recommend. As extra entertainment at the reception, we also had Picabo’s photobooth camper van, which was so much fun, and a sweetie cart from Candy Heart Sweet Carts, who provided a great service.
It was important to me to have lots of little special touches throughout the wedding, and so we had lots of quirky signs, ‘dancing feet’ flip flops, blankets in case guests got cold, toiletry baskets in the bathrooms. Outside there was an amazing field area where the children could safely play freely, so we had bubbles and skipping ropes there, which were loved.
Following our wedding, I would definitely recommend our choice of venue to other couples wanting a DIY style wedding.
On reflection, I can’t say I have a favourite part of the day – it was all amazing! I’d love to do it all over again!
We went to the Dominican Republic on honeymoon. It was just amazing – two weeks of luxury and relaxing.
My top tip for other Brides Up North would be – relax and enjoy every last minute of planning. Your big day comes around so fast and is over before you can blink. So just enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!