There is something about a wedding between two event planners that makes you expect something more (however unfair this might be). Lisa and Kevin’s classic wedding day does not disappoint.
This real wedding just sparkles with detail. From the classic tiara, (admit it, we all know we kinda want to wear one every day) to the gilded macaroon favours, every aspect of this wedding has been given the bride and grooms full attention and it shows.
This is a very well put together and beautiful day, the venue is the perfect example of an old house providing modern stylish decor yet retaining the classic charm and photo opportunities. The bridal party look stunning, perfectly mismatched maids and dapper gents, and Lisa’s dress is simply elegant. From flowers to stationary there is a story to each decision made, leading Lisa and Kevin to create a day that made their guests feel special and looked after while delighting in every detail. Definitely living up to their event planning backgrounds! Here is their Best Day Ever story…
Kevin and Lisa…the love story
We met back in November 2011. We both work in events and met when Kevin was brought in as a freelancer to assist on the project I was working on. Over the next few fast-paced months we spent a lot of time working together and getting to know each other. After the project finished in February we both knew that we didn’t want that to be the end of seeing each other and so we went on our first date in March 2012. 4 years later we’re now married and happier than ever for meeting on that rainy day in Manchester.
We talked about getting married from very early on and always joked we would get married in 2013. Every time we went on a nice holiday or visited a lovely restaurant everyone thought that the proposal was going to happen! With only a few days left of 2013, on Christmas morning, I received the best present ever at the bottom of my stocking. I unwrapped it to find the most beautiful ring and Kevin proposed as we sat round the Christmas tree, just the two of us, it was perfect.
Getting ready on the morning on the day was amazing and I loved spending the time with my girls. I tried to make the morning really special for us all and chose coloured coordinated flowered pyjamas and gave them personalised cups which I’d painted myself with their names and the wedding details on. A lovely keepsake and the perfect photo opportunity!
Your wedding inspirations and influences
Working in events the expectations for our wedding were high, people kept saying “it’s going to be the most amazing wedding!” I don’t think people realised that we produce conferences, which are very different things to a wedding!
Even so, we wanted to make sure our wedding was an amazing day that everyone had a great time and enjoyed sharing it with us.
We started the process quite quickly after getting engaged and the first step was for us to find a venue. Kevin’s family live in the Midlands and mine live in Manchester, so we were really keen to find a venue somewhere in the middle. After weeks of searching and finding so many venues that were too small, too big, too ‘conferency’ with no accommodation I had almost given up hope when Kevin found Hampton Manor.
Set in the small village of Hampton-In-Arden near Solihull, Hampton Manor offered us everything we were looking for in our ideal venue – a lovely contrast of old and new, just enough bedrooms on-site for close family and the bridal party to stay, beautiful grounds, great food and a lovely room to hold the wedding breakfast. To top it off there was a village church that was only a short walk away through the venue grounds that we could get married in – it really was perfect.
After visiting the venue for the first time we instantly fell in love with it and decided to use the Manor and it’s decor as inspiration for our day. I wanted a beautifully elegant wedding, keeping a lot of traditions, but also giving it a contemporary twist. The venue’s website, signage and branding all used an infographic style which we followed through in to our wedding invite (telling the story of how we’d met) as well as all of our wedding stationery on the day. I also chose a very neutral colour palette for the day which complimented the venues’ brightly coloured decor.
Your Wedding style
Following on from the theme of our day I knew my dress had to be very elegant and I didn’t really want vintage detailing.
I also knew I wanted my dress to be quite big – when else can you get away with it if not on your wedding day!
After flicking through Bridal magazines over Christmas I stumbled upon the Pronovias Ocumo dress, it was beautiful and the only dress I had seen so far that I liked. Knowing that people never really tend to end up with the dress that they think they will, I booked numerous appointments in London, along with a visit to the Pronovias store. We began the search there and I tried on about 8 dresses, all of which were varying styles – lace, fishtail, strapless, A line, none of which suited me at all! I then finally tried on the Ocumo and I loved it, it was extremely plain but that seemed to suit me so much more than all of the detail and fuss on the other dresses. When it was the only one that reduced my mum and sister to tears I knew it was the one. I tried on probably another 10 dresses from various designers afterwards just to check but nothing beat the Ocumo, it was just exactly what I wanted.
As it was so plain I was able to accessorise with a lace edged cathedral length veil (which got stuck down the aisle!! I still kept smiling!) and also a large crystal, diamind and pearl tiara. For the evening I added a Justin Alexander belt to match my tiara and add more sparkle!
On the day I also wore my Granny’s grey fur coat whilst outside, my ‘old’ and a perfect accessory for the winter chill.
For the bridesmaids I chose charcoal grey as the colour and used this as an accent colour across all of the stationery – very subtle but perfect for our classic yet contemporary day. Due to the season I knew I wanted all of my four maids in long dresses but decided for them to choose the style themselves. We ended up going with JLM Couture dresses as they had such a wide range of dresses that could be ordered in the same fabric. It was great fun seeing them try all the different styles, but it also ensured that they were all comfortable on the day and felt like themselves in their own style. The end result was brilliant, they all looked stunning and the dresses really complimented each other.
For Kevin and his Groomsmen he chose a grey silk Lounge suit with a matching waistcoat. The ushers wore pale grey/silver cravats and Kevin wore a striped ivory and charcoal cravat. The grey stripe was then carried through to the ushers buttonhole ribbon and my bouquet handle. We also had grey striped candy bags to hold our grey and white petal confetti.
It’s all in the detail
The venue interior was so beautiful that it really didn’t need a lot of dressing. The venue were very open to our ideas and we had full control of the look and feel of our day.
In the drinks reception we just used our table plan to dress the area – this was a beautiful sand blasted vine decorated with flowers, hanging tealights and individual cards with names on for each table.
In the wedding breakfast room, again it was kept very neutral. We hired in silver spindle back chairs and had a mixture of 3 different table centres – a collection of glass and silver vases with candles and flowers, a tall crystal candelabra with flowers around the base and the focal points of the room, tall silver vases with a large dome of flowers and hanging tea lights.
For the round top table we chose a mass of low level flowers and candles which looked beautiful and really made the speech photographs.
The menus followed the same typography style and included a thank you to all of our friends and family for joining us on our special day. I love photos so we also had our own Instagram feed and hashtag and a phone number people could text photos to and they would appear on a screen in the evening.
The favours for the adults were individual glass bell jars with nametags attached and 3 macarons inside, which were colour coordinated to the day and even included a touch of sparkle. For the children they differed depending on age – the babies had coloured squeezy cubes or rattles and the older children a bundle of crayons or pencils, all with their names attached.
For the evening we were really keen to get rid of the majority of round tables and introduce more lounge furniture and poseur tables so there was more of a party atmosphere. This was something the venue had never done before and it was a challenge with the timings but the venue made it happen and we were really pleased with how it looked.
Food was a big part of the day for us and we were really lucky that Hampton Manor has such great chefs. We really wanted the meal to reflect our favourites so we went for stuffed chicken and 3 types of chocolate dessert! For the evening buffet we had a Ploughmans.
The cake was quite contemporary with minimal fuss on the decoration following the theme of the day. We had four tiers, each a different flavour – fruit, lemon, raspberry and chocolate.
And we danced
For the entertainment during the day we had a singer and pianist play during the drinks reception and also a magician circling doing close up magic – this was a great surprise on the day and went down really well with the guests.
In the evening we had a 5 piece band playing some of our favourite songs.
For the first dance we chose Ed Sheeran, Thinking Out Loud, it had the most perfect lyrics and was also very aptly number 1 the week we got married.
We hired a photobooth for the evening – again one of my favourites and a sure way for guests to have a great time! The booth printed 2 copies of each photo, one for people to take home and one to add to the guest book and write a message.
In the break in between band sets we took everyone outside and gave everyone sparklers and treated them to a spectacular fireworks display – one of Kevin’s favourites and we couldn’t have a wedding in November without them!
Every picture tells a story
We were really lucky to be able to use a photographer that we work with regularly so he instantly put us at ease and captured some amazing moments throughout the day. We also had a 2nd photographer for the start of the day so we could capture people arriving at the church whilst me and my Dad were leaving the venue.
Jay took the formal shots we wanted but then captured the rest of the day in a journalistic style managing to get photos of the majority of guests, he also stayed right until the end so we have ended up with 1500 photos! A great memory of the day.
Honeymoon or mini moon?
The day after the wedding we enjoyed Sunday lunch with close family and friends and then travelled down to Heathrow where we were upgraded before flying out on our honeymoon the next morning.
The honeymoon was a complete surprise, Kevin booked it all and managed to keep it a secret right up to the day we flew. There were numerous stops on our trip and they were all secret until we checked in each time – we started the adventure in San Francisco for 4 nights, then flew to Vegas for 2 nights, followed by New York for 3 nights and then Barbados for 7 nights. It really was the trip of a lifetime and made all the better for not knowing where I was off to each time!
What’s next for Lisa and Kevin…
We’re now looking forward to moving house, buying our proper marital home and hopefully starting to think about extending family Sparkles 🙂