If ever there was a wedding that encapsulates everything that Festival Brides stands for then this has to be it! From the festival wedding decor to the uber cool suppliers involved, everything about this wedding ticks our festival boxes and I just know you are going to LOVE it.
Captured by the fabulous Emma of ELS Photography, Chris and Nicky’s Glastonbury Inspired Festival Wedding was a day full of relaxed vibes, great music, fun wedding entertainment (which included fancy dress, face painting and a photobooth) and bright and colourful decor. Their stationery included festival wristbands, tickets and table names which were inspired by their favourite music festivals and they also had a fabulous ‘Wedfest’ sign which provided an amazing backdrop for some great photos. They also had glamping, a wedding tipi, a silent disco, festival flags and they gave each of their guests their own set of brightly coloured sun glasses as favours. Like I said, this was a fully fledged festival wedding and I haven’t even told you about the lake they had for swimming!
Nicky and Chris talk us through their big day….
Black Sand, A Hurricane, A Cliff Top and One Knee….
Chris took me on an amazing 5 day trip to Iceland for my 31st birthday in early September. There he had planned a lovely stroll along the stunning black sand beach in the town of Vik on the southern tip of the island, culminating with a champagne picnic on the cliff top overlooking the incredible rocky outcrops infront of a pretty light house. Being Iceland in September it was pouring with rain and blowing a gale when we got there so we went to dinner and I told him how much I was fine with us not getting married anytime soon! Woops! Luckily I didn’t put him off and the next day the rain at least stopped so he drove me to the top of the cliff instead and despite there still be a small hurricane going on he got down on one knee and popped the question and of course I said yes.
This was 100% the one….
My Dress was by Alice Temperley from Exquisite Bridal Couture in Winchester. This is the most beautiful but relaxed bridal shop and to be honest I could have gone with a number of dresses from there as they had so many amazing dresses but when I put on the Temperley dress it felt like it had pretty much been made from me. It was a lovely day outside and as Exquisite is down a pretty private alleyway they suggested I went outside to see it better in the light, as I did the wind picked up the parachute silk over layer which blew out behind me and with tears in my eyes I turned to my Mum who was already getting out her credit card to put down the deposit. Neither my Mum or I are emotional people so our reactions told me this was 100% the one!
Lipstick and Curls….
For hair and make up we contacted a company called Lipstick and Curls who put us in touch with one of their team local to us in Surrey. This is how we met the second lovely Ema of our wedding helpers, also with brightly coloured hair and equally bright and happy personality. Meeting Ema at the trial was such a pleasure and she understood the look we were going for straight away and even came up with a design for some sparkly festival flowers for around our eyes which I loved. She really was a great part of the day and we all loved the hair and make up she did for us.
A Festival Wedding on A Farmers Field….
We got married at All Saints Church in Odiham, Hampshire and our reception was then in a farmers field in the village of Shawford just outside of Winchester.
Chris grew up in the village of Odiham and his parents still live there so we spend a fair amount of time there. It is a very picturesque village, not too far from where we live in Guildford and given its sentimental connection we thought it would be the perfect place.
When Chris and I first talked about what we wanted from our wedding I said I really didn’t want the whole big traditional, formal affair and when Chris suggested we did a festival instead I was immediately in. He still wanted some traditional bits, hence the church but for most of it I was given free license to go as festival themed as possible.
We spent some time shopping for the perfect field and eventually found Malms Farm through one of the Tipi companies I was looking at and it was absolutely stunning with loads of space and a gorgeous river side location we couldn’t resist. Mike, who owns the land, was so lovely and laid back from the day we met him to all the times I text to ask if I could just pop down to show someone else the ‘venue’ for our wedding.
Glamping, Camping and Vanning….
We used 2 incredible glamping companies to provide accommodation for our guests as well as allowing people to bring their owns tents and even campervans.
Most of our guests decided to go with the slightly more affordable option of Bears and Butterflies who provided smaller tipis for couples or singles. They did a great all inclusive package with everything our guests needed even down to personalised name badges for each of the tents.
For the wedding party and family we used Love Lotus to provide a more luxurious experience. Mostly we used their larger tipi style tents which could be set up to have a number of different combos of guests. For Chris and I we went for their wedding package which was their biggest Belle tent with all the trimmings! We had this for the whole weekend through to the Monday morning which meant we could stay on our own on the Sunday night as well which was an amazing experience in our luxury tent.
Both companies were so easy to deal with and it was so special to wake up the first morning of our married life with all of our family and friends around us reliving all the antics from the previous day.
Nothing’s Going to Stop us Now….
The most traditional part of the day was our ceremony in the local church where Chris grew up in Odihm. However even this had a laid back atmosphere as the reverend was lovely and relaxed and as we had a sunflower theme she even gave us our very own sunflower as a gift part way through the ceremony and didn’t seem too upset when my brother added mention of everyone enjoying Wedfest at the end of his reading of a passage from Romans. Chris’ sister did her reading of a children’s book and song called Your Personal Penguin by Sandra Boynton.
I walked in to the dramatic background of the instrumental of Verve’s Bitter Sweet Symphony. For signing the register we had the Piano Guys cover of Cristina Perri’s A Thousand Years followed but an orchestral version of Katy Perry’s Firework (One of our favourite songs). We then walked out to Starship’s Nothing’s Going to Stop us Now ready to get the party started.
A Stunning Tent and Festival Inspired Decor….
We weren’t quite confident enough in the British weather to not have any cover so we used The Stunning Tent Company to provide our main Tipi where we had our main meal, speeches and late night dancing. We had 2 large tents and a smaller chill out area. The tent was stunning but for me it was all the internal dressings that really made it, the lighting, the bare oak tables and benches, the curved wooden bar and even an indoor fire pit!
As our reception venue was just a blank field when we started how to decorate it was a big decision. The glamping tents, the big Tipi and the river provided a good background but we felt like we need something extra to give it the true festival feeling.
We started with some festival style flags from the Event Flag Hire company. They do a great package of 10 flags with bunting that got delivered directly to the site the day before and were super easy to put up. We used these to make a really dramatic walkway through the field to the main party area.
We were still looking for more when a friend of my Mum’s mentioned a place round the corner from my parents’ house in Glastonbury called Themes. I wasn’t expecting much so sent my parents to have a look and they were so excited about what they saw when they went to visit I had to go and have a look for myself. Let me tell you, this place is literally an Aladdin’s cave of props, decorations, lights and everything you could possible ever need to create an amazing themed event. I only wish I had found them earlier so we could have had more budget left to spend in here but they provided us with lighting, an outdoor stage and most importantly our lightup WEDFEST sign that really became an icon of our wedding and all the pics.
Finally to add some finishing touches I roped in family and friends to get a bit creative. We made a festival sign and painted up some oil drums in bright festival colours to use as bins. After months of collecting wine bottles and jam jars we used these to create flower center pieces for the tables and as candle holders which we brightened up with coloured ribbons and hung a number of these in the tree in the center of the field and around the hay bales the farmer lent us as seating.
Wristbands, Tickets and Line Ups….
To give the real festival feel we wanted to send all the guests tickets rather than invites and for this we found Marty from Wedfest who came up with a great design using bright orange and yellow colours to match our sunflower theme. We then also used him to design us personalised wrist bands, matching table plans and name cards based on different festivals Chris and I have been to over the years.
For our wedding favours we gave everyone a personalised Wedfest Wrist band and a pair of brightly coloured sun glasses. Luckily the sun was out enough for everyone to make use of them!
A pair of sparkly cat ears and Beautiful Pictures….
Our photographer was the lovely Emma who runs her own company ELS Photography. We loved Emma’s pictures on her website. They were so bright, full of colour and energy which is exactly what we wanted for our wedding. When we met her at a cosy pub in Kent and she was wearing a pair of sparkly cat ears on top of her pink hair we knew she would fit in with our fancy dress loving bunch of crazy friends and we were not disappointed. When we did our ‘love shoot’ with Emma prior to the big day she made us feel so relaxed and totally at ease being silly in front of her and her camera which made it so easy on the actual day. Emma managed to capture our day perfectly and we are so glad we asked her to be part of it as we now have some beautiful pictures to keep all the amazing memories alive!
Real or Fake?
I really wanted to have sunflowers as our wedding flowers but given they are quite temperamental flowers and that Chris and one of my bridesmaids have pretty bad hay fever we figured the less flowers the better and as such we decided to go with fake flowers that I just got from hobby craft. This meant that we could actually buy these well in advance and I actually put together the bouquets, table decoration and bunches for the church pews myself.
2 Bands, DJ’s and A Silent Disco….
Given the festival theme we really wanted to go all out on the music to keep people dancing all day and all night if possible.
For the drinks reception we went for a vintage style band, Victoriana who did Mumford and Sons style covers of modern songs to get everyone up and jigging. The band was amazing even ploughing through when we had a few drops of rain and allowing our friends 4 year old up on stage to jam with them.
In the evening we went back to Chris and I’s favourite decade of music, the 80’s! As such we went with Popgun who 100% nailed the 80’s style and sound that we love. The learnt our first dance song specially for us and I don’t think anyone stopped dancing the whole time they were playing.
For late night antics we then moved onto a silent disco. Having done these at previous festivals Chris and I knew these were generally hilarious and as lots of people hadn’t experience this before we thought this would be a great addition to the party. For this we went with Silent Noize who not only DJayed 3 different channels of silent disco until 2am but also provided out loud music throughout the day between the bands and over dinner and provided microphones for the speeches.
The whole day was amazing but my favourite bit was probably when Chris and I pulled up in the car to the festival site, the best men gave us our wrist bands and our sunglass and we made our way down the row of flags to the main area to be greeted by a glass of champagne. We felt like absolute rockstars!
Other top highlights that I haven’t even really talked about here were the fancy dress party in the river, all the kids loving everything from the fancy dress to jamming with the bands, smashing up a chocolate pot with samurai swords (you will have to ask Chris what that was about), pulling off some ridiculous dance moves with my dad as part of his speech and just generally having the most amazing day of my life with the love of my life and all our friends and family!
If you want to do a festival style wedding and as such your venue is a field don’t forget you have to bring absolutely everything into that field including a generator for power. We left this a bit late and as such had to go a bit further afield for this but in the end used Energy Generator Hire in Buckinghamshire who did a great package to provide 2 generators (1 as a backup) and get it all cabled up so we had nothing to worry about.
The Line Up
Photographer: ELS Photography
Ceremony Venue: All Saints Church in Odiham
Reception Venue: Malms Farm, Winchester
Wedding Tipi: The Stunning Tent Company
Bride’s Dress: Alice Temperley via Exquisite Brides
Groom’s Suit: Jack Bunneys
Bridesmaid Dresses: Two Birds
Hair & Make-Up: Exact Makeup Art via Lipstick and Curls
Small Bell Tents: Bears and Butterflies
Large Bell Tents: Love Lotus
Festival Flags: Event Flag Hire
Lighting, Ourdoor Stage & Wedfest Sign: Themes Inc
Cake: The Little Wedding Bakery
Day Band: Victoriana
Evening Band: Popgun 80’s Band
DJ’s & Silent Disco: Silent Noize Events
Catering: Jacaranda Catering
Generator: Energy Generator Hire
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