Rhia and Andy - A wedding at Gate Street Barn

When Andy and I started planning our wedding we agreed on two important factors: it had to be fun and it had to be personal.

I think it’s fair to say we had a lot of fun, not just on the day but planning it as well. We had our wedding at Gate Street Barn, a beautiful barn set in the English countryside in Surrey and you couldn’t ask for more perfection, we even had longhorn cows in the fields!  So we set the date: 29th May 2010. Unfortunately it rained in true British Bank Holiday weather style but that didn’t detract from how much fun everyone had. I don’t think I have seen so many people laughing throughout the whole day.

I was so lucky to have my bridesmaids, Naomi and Louise, getting ready with me. Together with my make-up artist and hair stylist they transformed me from nervous wreck watching the rain pour down in the morning, to glamorous bride ready for the best day of her life. I will never forget that moment seeing Andy’s face light up when I walked it, I knew everything was alright and to prove it the sun came out!

Once we had chosen the barn it was all about the theme, this was really difficult as I didn’t have a favourite colour or flower, all I knew is that I wanted something bright. Then Andy suggested it would be fun to have our favourite childhood sweets – from there the ideas just kept rolling.

We themed each table with a different sweet. There were all sorts of table names including ‘shrimps and bananas’ and ‘liquorice allsorts’! Keeping it personal, we made sure that that our top table guests had their favourite sweet on the table – which we called ‘Pick-a-Mix’.

To complete our childhood sweet theme we got vintage weighing scales from e-bay, scoops and white paper bags; these were wrapped together with the napkins and name tags and held in place with candy watches (for the boys) and candy bracelets (for the girls). I loved seeing how many people were wearing them during the meal; Andy and I both led the way sporting ours for the whole day!

Our guests were treated to our favourite foods – including sausage and mash for main and strawberry and raspberry pavlova to finish. Simple but everyone loved it. To complete the meal, we printed on each menu a simple note: Fill your bags with you favourite sweets. If your favourite sweets are on another table – don’t be afraid to go and ask. It was amazing to see everyone stealing sweets from other tables – a great way to mingle!

We surprised everyone, by cutting a wedding cake made of cheese which was later served as an evening snack.

To end the evening, we had a great live band, who sang our first dance: You’ve got the love by Florence + the Machine. Everyone was surprised we had learnt a full routine and there was a lot of cheering from the crowd. Afterwards, we couldn’t get people off the dance floor as they loved the band so much.

Probably one of the most important details for the day was who we chose to work with. People who we could have fun and relax with. And we couldn’t have asked for a better team.

Step one – get a wedding photographer who has the right mix of good photos and someone we could get along with for whole day. Along came Guy Collier, the most talented wedding photographer we have ever seen and the nicest man too! Andy knew he was the one just by looking at Guy’s website and I knew he was the right man for the job when, during our first meeting, he kindly advised me that if I fell down the aisle, he would pick me up…after he had taken some good shots! Guy managed to capture the mood throughout the day in his photos, from the emotion and nerves at the start; to when Andy saw me enter the Barn, right through to the relief of finishing the first dance. The photos alone tell you a good story.

Step two – the wedding flowers. From the moment I spoke to florist Gill Pike I knew I could trust her – she instantly came up with an idea to have different flowers to match each sweet, an ambitious idea but it looked amazing. Knowing how important the little touches were to me Gill attached a gold apple pendant which my mum had given me. I didn’t throw that bouquet – Gill made a mini version instead.

Photography:  Guy Collier.  
Dress: Manhattan by Essense of Australia from Mamfii Bridal
Florist: Gill Pike
Shoes:  Jimmy Choo
Make up:  Laura Tucker
Catering and Cheese Cake:  Piglets Catering

Guy Collier and Mamfii Bridal are members of our invitation only Premier Portfolio.  To find out more about how members are chosen, click here.

  • 1 comments "Rhia and Andy - A wedding at Gate Street Barn"

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  • Angela says

    18th July 2010 at 9:07 am

    The sweets are a great idea, it's ages since I've seen the necklace sweets in the picture! Great flowers too.

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