Beautiful yet oh so simple, Evonne and Mat’s laid back outdoor woodland wedding has had us prancing in ethereal heaven this morning. Captured by the incredibly talented Jess Soper Photography, this delightfully authentic wedding will have you wishing for raindrops and wellies on your big day! Featuring a tree-draped ceremony, wild market flowers and an elegant touch of DIY, Evonne’s vision was pretty simple – outdoors, informal and relaxed whilst keeping to a minimum spend. With charity shop collectibles, handmade jewellery, a splash of emerald green and lots of help from their loved ones, they managed to create the perfect outdoor wedding on a budget……

We purchased all our own food and alcohol and paid a friend to be a hostess and we made homemade ale and sloe gin. Even though we didn’t want to spend too much on our wedding it was important to us that our friends and family were fed and watered by us and they didn’t have to pay for anything. Cash and carry kept the cost down!

Down on one knee in bonny brighton….

We have been together for 10 years and have 2 young children. We had always said we would like to get married one day but it was never the right time. Finally, a surprise weekend away in Brighton and relaxing time away from children. Mat surprised me with his proposal. It was prefect as we had really enjoyed just being us again, how we were in the early days 10 years ago.

Handmade to order…

Some of the wedding trinkets were handmade or held great sentimental value. The handmade emerald green brooch bouquet was made by a friend as a wedding gift. The flower buttonholes were made by mother-of-the-groom (she made them for everyone!). My pearl bracelet belonged to my Great Grandmother and the lavender flowers in the fresh flower crown was used in memory of her as these were her favourite. The dress was from Boulevard Bridal in Earls Colne and the emerald heels were from Aldo.

Humanist wedding in the woods….

We wanted an outdoor Humanist wedding in the woods. A friend recommended a local farm with a small wooded area. The walk to the woods was a beautiful 10-minute walk through the fields from the main farm. This added a build-up for the guests not knowing where they were going and what to expect at the ceremony.

‘ I get by with a little help from my friends…..’

We didn’t have bridesmaids (although I did have two close friends to look after me) instead my two sons were our little helpers. Owen the eldest looked after our rings and Flynn our youngest was in charge of our hand fastening cords. Both wore stone trousers, white shirts, emerald green braces, green shoes.

Handmade alter, flower-draped swing and a Persian rug…..

I had a vision that the trees would have white paper balls hanging down all over, unfortunately as the weather was unpredictable, Matt only has time to hang about 6 in the morning. We draped a white sheet around the main tree to look like an altar, we had large white cushions for people to sit on and wooden tree stumps, flowers wrapped about the swing and a Persian rug on the ground for us to stand on during the ceremony. I had this vision but only saw it put together on my arrival to the ceremony, I was blown away.

Silk petals, vintage lace and……lego!

The hall had lowered beams across them so I asked a friend who is a florist to create a flower curtain coming down the middle of the hall. Using mixture of fresh and silk flowers and silk petals bundles (made by friends at work) hanging on invisible cotton and ribbon.

Each table has a brass/gold ornament that represents us and our life together. London bus, robot, Buddha statues.

Food and drinks table were covered in vintage white lace table cloths. These were collected from charity shops. All the dishes for sweets etc all vintage collected from charity shops or car boot fairs.

We had a kids table. – lego was a hit (charity shop bundle,) colouring in, toy cars, outdoor items like hula hoops etc.

Favourite Moment….

The whole day was magical from beginning to end. We wouldn’t have changed a thing! The moment I saw my children coming running towards me from the hidden wooded area filled my heart with love. As we walked in together, hearing the folk music playing, bubbles floating around and seeing all my family and friends and Mat at the tree made me well up. Our vision had worked and the day was actually happening. It was really magical.

Any advice?

If you have an idea and you really want to do it, go for it. It’s your day and just because it’s not the norm and certain people think your idea is not good you should not be held back by others worrying about what they might think or how they will manage. Our woodland wedding was a worry even for the groom due to rain but I stuck by our vision – that’s what wellies and umbrellas are made for!

Not all your ideas will work with your budget and time. We had to cut corners or scrap ideas and make compromises but I don’t regret anything. It was hard work planning a wedding with two children and trying to do everything ourselves but we saved a lot of money doing it this way and we got to do everything we wanted.

Don’t be afraid to use your friends and family! We wanted to use the skills of our friends and we wanted them to be involved and they wanted to be involved. It made it much more special knowing so many people played a part in our wedding and it helped keep the cost down. Including items for the wedding as wedding gifts was prefect. As we kept our wedding to close friends even on the day everyone got stuck in, quickly taking down decorations at the woods to put in the shed as a rain storm was coming, clearing dishes from the tables and moving tables to make way for the band. Our friends and family help set up the day before and most of the guests the next day come back to the hall to clear up, kids included. We couldn’t have done it without them.

The Line Up

Photography: Jess Soper Photography
Ceremony Venue: Little Roper’s Farm
Bride’s Dress: Boulevard Bridal
Bride’s Hair: Chloe Nicole Wedding hair
Groom’s Jacket – Peter Werth
Flowers: Michelle Floral, The Country Garden Flower Company
Band: Fishclaw and The Skammers
Caterers: Mena’s Indian Banquet
Stationary and website: Phuse Media

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