Image by Studio Rouge.
So. Much. Love.
This wedding has it all… a beautiful autumnal palette, an outdoor wedding of dreams, feathers in bouquets, giant LOVE letters, a towering naked cake and the sweetest, most heartfelt touches.
Charlotte & Mark chose Wasing Park in Berkshire as their venue and I couldn’t love it more.
Notes from the Bride
Inspiration came naturally when planning our big day; we both had a very clear vision of how we wanted our wedding and upon viewing our venue it all fell into place. However, like most brides find, Pinterest was a huge help when piecing together ideas!
There was no competition, when we viewed Wasing Park it had everything we wanted in a wedding venue. It was perfectly placed in the nearby countryside with stunning grounds, had exclusivity on the day and somewhere for an outdoor ceremony. Equally it was important for our venue to have on-site accommodation and Wasing Park has the most incredible guest rooms, all oozing with character. When I took my Dad to one of their showcases for the first time, his words were “you’ll find it hard to beat” and at that moment there wasn’t any further searching, we had found our perfect venue.
We wanted to have a wedding unique to us with lots of personality. The wedding theme was rustic woodland, with a romantic midsummer nights dream feel that started with our wedding invites through to our flowers. We also wanted to incorporate our love for Glastonbury festival, there were several influences throughout the day and ironically Wasing Estate is also home to lots of beautiful cows.
As a designer by nature it was instinctive for me to create our decorations. Starting with the invites and stationery through to larger displays on the day. I spent many months sourcing materials, mocking up displays and involved my Dad with some of the bigger projects. Including an up-cycled cable drum for our cake table and an outdoor bar made from pallets.
We also recreated the famous ‘Glastonbury’ sign in the form of the popular Love letters. We covered them in foam and patchwork fabric in various colours to keep true to the official festival sign. They were positioned on the grass mound opposite the Castle Barn and were illuminated in the evening. Our guests absolutely loved them; and a countless number of photos were taken.
I really enjoyed planning our decorations and seeing the results made all of the effort worth while, every little detail made our day extra special and unique to us.
From the outset I wanted rich berry tones for our wedding, I thought this was equally a good choice for a September wedding and I spent many months deliberating over the perfect shades. The final choice was aubergine and merlot for my bridesmaids dresses. I had three of my ladies in each colour and they all had bouquets in the alternate colour.
We didn’t hold back on flowers and I really enjoyed putting moodboards together and discussing our ideas with our wonderful florist Hannah of Ruby & Grace. Hannah and her team were brilliant and knew exactly what to put together for us. We wanted the flowers to be opulent in colour and naturally tied with lots of texture. Many of the displays included the use of moss and feathers giving them an enchanted feel.
I couldn’t wait to see our flowers the morning of the wedding and I was overwhelmed with how beautiful they were. There were flowers everywhere you looked and it was everything I imagined and more. I could literally talk all day about our flowers!
We wanted to create a fun day with lots of little quirks but keeping true to a traditional wedding. It was nice having everything on site at Wasing because it gave us the relaxed atmosphere we wanted, meaning we could stick to timings and keep guests completely entertained.
I adored my dress and it’s exactly what I visualised as my prefect dress. I found ‘the one’ in the first shop I made an appointment with and it was the second dress I tried on. It was designed by Maggie Sottero and was a fit and flare in style. The whole dress was covered in the most beautiful lace with delicate crystals and beads. The detail on the dress was breathtaking and I felt like a princess in it. I was reunited with my dress beautifully cleaned and boxed a few weeks after the wedding, an emotional moment took my by surprise when I opened up the box and saw it again.
My Dad bought me a beautiful pair of platinum and crystal earrings for my 31st Birthday, perhaps with the wedding in mind, and I wore these with the matching bracelet from Ernest Jones. I wanted to keep my jewellery to a minimum as I also had a crystal headband from Liberty in Love to use alongside my veil and I didn’t want it to be too much or take the attention away from my dress.
Mark wore a tailored navy blue lounge suit from our local tailors Robert Tracey, accompanied with a tweed waistcoat and silk tie with matching pocket square.
We hadn’t attended an outdoor wedding in the UK before which made it even more appealing to attempt a ceremony at the Summer House. Despite the week’s weather being unpredictable, we stuck to our guns and were extremely lucky to have a sunny and warm day with guests enjoying the outdoor space throughout the entire wedding. We still can’t believe how fortunate we were! My sister thoughtfully did our reading of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres. Despite the nerves she did an amazing job and it was truly beautiful and heartfelt.
We had our drinks reception in the Garden Room and on the lawn; Galloping Gourmet served a divine selection of cocktails, one of which was described as ‘nectar’ by my Mother-in-Law. We also provided a ‘Pimp Your Prosecco’ station with juices, fruit purees, fresh berries and edible flowers. The drinks got many compliments from our guests and as did the delicious canapés by Galloping Gourmet.
Like us, our friends and family love a good party and our wedding wasn’t going to be any different! During the day we had a String Quartet who played a good balance of classical music for the ceremony followed by modern and band music throughout our drinks reception on the lawn. In the evening we had a DJ and live band.
In keeping with the festival theme we also hired ‘Bertie’ the VW camper as our evening photo booth from Vintage Camper Booths – our friends and family really enjoyed the novelty of it being a campervan and had a lot of fun.
Luckily Wasing Park has a late night bar for residents so the party kept going until the small hours and it was amusing seeing everyone the following morning at breakfast – some a little worse for wear!
The Wasing Park events team, were amazing and so helpful, they really couldn’t do enough for you. From start to finish they were a huge support to us whilst planning our perfect day. Gemma was amazing and stayed close to us throughout the wedding.
Best part of the day
It’s hard to choose a favourite moment from the day, there were so many! If we had to have one it would be when we walked into our reception welcomed by our guests as a newly married couple.
From one bride to another…
Allow plenty of time to plan your day exactly as you want it. The more time you have the less compromises you’ll need to make.
You can benefit from huge savings hunting for bargains and embarking on some DIY projects. Equally try and enjoy the build up to your wedding as much as possible, it can be just as important as the day itself to look back on.
I also wish I had worried less about things you cannot change (like the weather) the day was perfect in everyway!
Venue Wasing Park
Photography Studio Rouge
Florist Ruby & Grace
Bridal Designer Maggie Sottero
Hair & Makeup Charlotte Elizabeth
Photo Booth Vintage Camper Booths
Groom’s Attire Robert Tracey Tailors
Catering Galloping Gourmet