Organic silk wedding dress for a stylish summer wedding
The meeting and proposal
Rob and I first met in 1994 at Nottingham University when we were both undergraduates studying Animal Science. We both went our separate ways and married other people. After both our marriages broke down we bumped into each other again in 2014 at the Nantwich Jazz Festival and eventually ended up going on a date towards the end of that year. We got engaged in 2017 over dinner at The Grovesnor Hotel in Chester and married just over a year later in a beautiful ceremony at Dorfold Hall, Nantwich.
Dorfold Hall is a beautiful, privately owned, Jacobean Mansion on the outskirts of Nantwich. A fairly new wedding venue we fell in love with the house, grounds and ambiance the second we looked at it. We only live two miles away from there too so it was perfect.
We had planned an outdoor civil ceremony under a magnificent 1000 year old Spanish oak tree but sadly it rained all morning on the wedding day so we had our ceremony in the gorgeous coach house. We did have some lovely photos taken under the tree afterwards, it was a shame the British weather foiled our plan though, as there is something amazingly beautiful about the tree.
Our decor was quite rustic and simple in style with dusky pink peonies, lots of green foliage and candles.
Rob and his groomsmen all wore tweed waistcoats and ties which we had made to measure by a super talented lady called Hannah Davies for each of them and gave them as gifts to keep.
As a gift for my bridesmaids, my son who was a little pageboy and my mum I commissioned a local lady to make felt rabbits using offcuts from Rob’s tweed waistcoat and my silk wedding dress to line their ears. They were so beautiful.
I followed our children up the aisle to A Thousand Years by Christina Perri and our daughter aged 6 at the time, did one of our readings, an excerpt from Winnie the Pooh, which was beautiful. Our band for the day played during the ceremony an acoustic version of Kodaline’s ‘The One’ and Ellie Goulding’s ‘How Long Will I Love You’.
There is no mistaking how happy Jo looks walking down the aisle to Rob in this picture!
I made the invitations and the orders of service myself which were rustic style on brown craft paper tied with jute twine with floral lined envelopes. I also made our wedding cake which was a three tier, semi-naked chocolate cake decorated with fresh flowers, on an oak board.
My sister made the table plan for us from a huge framed cork board with juts string and little pegged-on lists of names.
My mum had spent the previous year raiding friend’s gardens and made gorgeous real mixed petal confetti in floral paper cones which my daughter and my little niece handed to guests after the ceremony from wicker baskets.
I also made all the millionaire’s shortbread wedding favours.
Multi tasking mama even on her wedding day!
We had a drinks reception in the grounds following the ceremony as by then it had stopped raining. The Mac Brothers played an acoustic set during this. Our delicious wedding breakfast was supplied by the lovely Catherine Skates and her team and was held in the fabulous marquee in the grounds which was twinkling with fairy lights and gorgeous rustic table arrangements. All the flowers for the whole day were arranged by a lovely friend of the family who runs a floristry business in Dorset.
Outside the marquee were fire pits surrounded by straw bales for guests to sit and chat after the meal. We had sparklers outside just as darkness came before some final dancing.
Jo was keen to choose a wedding dress that was eco-friendly in more than just the fabrics, she wanted to wear it again! So having chosen the softer cream than the ivory colour it lends itself more easily to being reworn. She had the dress altered to knee length after the wedding so it could be worn on special occasions.
Words of wisdom
Keep everything personal to you and it will be all the more special.
I wish we had filmed the day, particularly as our children played such a big part, our one regret, we do have the most amazing photographs though.
Venue- Dorfold Hall, Nantwich
Dress - Sanyukta Shrestha
Shoes - Rachel Simpson
Tweed waistcoats and ties - Hannah Davies Bespoke Tweed Tailoring
Flowers - Jen Poynter @ Jennifer Poynter Flowers
Hair - Emma Green @ Emma green hair.co.uk
Make up - Vickie Mathews @ Perfection by Victoria, The Nail Bar & Beauty Rooms
Caterer - Catherine Skates
Bar - Escapade bars
Band - The Mac Brothers
Cake - Bride
Stationary - Bride