The last big wedding before lockdown - an eco-friendly bohemian wonderland.
We love a good flower and this wedding has them aplenty, along with boho vibes, the coolest VW camper and, quite possibly, the most joyful bride we've ever seen! Siân and Simon created a wedding day which just perfectly represented them and their lifestyle. With caring for the environment being important to them in everyday life, they made sure their wedding day was no exception with sustainability, recycling and locality being at the forefront of the planning.
Here the lovely Siân tells us more about how they created their beautifully bohemian day...
Tell us about the venue
I know that Save the Date Magazine adores The Carriage Hall as much as we did! We booked the venue within 3 days of getting engaged! Both of us had always dreamt of a countryside rustic wedding. The thing that sealed the deal was, without a doubt, the interior brickwork/beautiful arch windows & that incredible high ceiling.It had that barn-feel while somehow being a little bit more luxurious and classy. It was perfect.
Describe the style of your wedding
I had planned my entire wedding on Pinterest since before I even met Simon… I was just waiting to insert the right partner and date! But it was wonderful to add to these dreams and create so many personal touches that summed us up perfectly. We chose a sage green colour theme (our favourite colour is green – we love earthy tones) but as I’m so pale I also decided to include a pop of raspberry in the bride & groom’s flowers, while bridesmaids and groomsmen had all green & white. Almost everything was DIY! We’re really passionate about the environment and wanted to have sustainable, reusable or upcycled items where possible. Even my veil was off Facebook marketplace for £10! We were really keen for our wedding to be financially attainable, and we are so blessed to have crafty friends. We had many wood-workshopping days with friends, using scraps of wood we’d collected from the street or parks etc. and turning them into whimsical signs & decor. We had our favourite quotes lettered on pieces of wood – everything from Bible verses about love to Beyonce quotes about putting a ring on it! We even created a giant wooden archway that we got married in front of, and later used as a photo booth. We borrowed a friend of a friend’s old VW (named Betsy) to arrive in.
The tables included lanterns bought from a variety of stores and all painted white, sat on logs that we chopped and an erray of wildflowers. The table names were each of our favourite board games written on blocks of wood that we made (we’re proper nerds). The favours were all wildflower seeds that are friendly for bees! The kids each received personalised goody bags full of games and colouring to keep them entertained during the speeches.
Our aim was to have all vendors from locally sources, independent businesses. And our hope is to share our sustainable wedding tips and loan out our many homemade decor (and maybe even personalise some!) so that others can have affordable, eco-friendly, bohemian weddings too.
What did you all wear?
I wore an Ana Kara dress ‘Gail’ which was the floaty, whimsical, woodland princess dress I always dreamt of. The bridesmaids wore sage green dresses (2 in one style, 2 in another style and slightly different shade). I wanted to make sure that all of my girls felt comfortable, and not forced to wear a dress that didn’t suit their body type – we’re all so different and beautiful in our own way! The 3 older flower girls wore dresses with a white top, heart cut out back and a sage tulle skirt. The littlies wore a sage green top with white tutu, and our little flower baby wore an all white dress with tulle skirt. They all had a variety of different cardis in a variety of shades – I really didn’t want it to look super uniform and formal, just comfy and beautiful. Groomsmen wore different shades of navy with sage green linen ties. ALL of the girls from age 9 months to the bride wore flowers in their hair!
What did everybody eat and drink?
Our wedding cake was not a cake… we had a stacked pavlova with edible flowers on a (homemade wooden) cake stand surrounded by mini meringues. Everything, down to the hundreds of mini meringues and chopped strawberries were done at home. We asked a dozen friends to just make a handful of meringues, again, not uniform or perfect by any means, and together we created a beautiful homemade display of meringues!
We had a ‘treat yourself’ donut wall with multiple donuts puns surrounding it (like put a ring on it and donut mind if I do!) and giant wooden buckets of sweet & salty popcorn.
We also hired a rustic cheese cart which was hugely popular. They brought artisan homemade cheese (and some vegan options) with crackers, chutney, olives and everything you could ever dream of. It was wooden and beautiful… we loved it.
As well as this we hired a local Derbyshire charity called ‘Just-ice‘ who brought their artisan homemade ice cream in their little bicycle and umbrella cart called ‘Wilbur’! The reason we chose these guys is because their profits go toward preventing human trafficking and child soldier rehabilitation. Social justice is so important to us, so we’re really glad these guys could be a part of our day and receive some extra pennies towards their brilliant cause.
How did you entertain the guests?
We asked a local band (made up of some pals) to perform some folky songs for the beginning part of the night, followed by the Nottingham DJ for the rest of the night. We really looked into some cool bands, but we decided in the end that we’d much rather sing and dance to actual Taylor Swift and Drake, rather than someone else singing them! We love a boogie.
We also played ‘Mr & Mrs’ during the evening where we paused the dancing and Simon & I were asked a series of questions. We were back to back and each with one of each other’s shoes in our hand plus one of our own. We had to put the shoe in the air of the person we thought was the answer to the question (e.g. who is the messiest!) and every question we got right, we could move closer together… eventually ending in a big smooch in the middle.
We had a snapcandy photobooth which was great fun, but had to have some Covid regulations to wipe down all props after individual use but they did a great job.
We had some lawn games that people played briefly. but it was a cold March evening, so most of us opted for indoor dancing!
Any words of advice for future brides/grooms?
It is possible to not have a huge amount of waste following your wedding! We thought carefully about the decor we used, and only created or bought things that we would use again. For example, instead of having a ‘welcome to our wedding’ sign we opted for a ‘Welcome | The Johns | Est. March 2020’ so that we can put it up in our future homes and welcome people to our house. It’s currently up in our living room covering an old fireplace that doesn’t work!