Cwtchfest- All you need to know

Eek… We are so excited to be bringing you yet another awesome Cwtchfest wedding festival and cannot wait to open the doors to you all tomorrow.  Set up is going really well and we’ve lots more to add to the field, it’s so exciting seeing everything come together.

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(just a few tables to set up!)

Todays post is all about what to expect at Cwtchfest and to help you make the most of your day!
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Tickets:

If you have already bought your tickets, HURRAY! Simply print them off or show the confirmation email on your phone when you arrive at the registration tent. There is a barcode we can scan.

If you haven’t bought your tickets yet we strongly advise you get them ASAP. You can purchase on the day at the gate but there may be a wait. The sun is on our side again and we’re expecting this years event to be VERY busy.

Directions:

By car: The Museum is signposted from junction 33 of the M4 motorway (follow road signs for the Museum of Welsh Life), with direct access from the A4232.

By bus: Buses operate between Cardiff City and St Fagans National History Museum throughout the year (number 32A, 320 and 321). The Easyway 32A bus stops in the main car park of the Museum, and the other two buses stop at St Fagans village. The bus ride between the Museum and Cardiff city centre is approximately 25 minutes.

You can plan your journey using the Traveline Cymru website or by calling their helpline on 0300 200 22 33.

The Museum’s website is full of lots more information regarding disabled access, families, dogs etc… take a look here

Parking:

When you arrive at St.Fagans, you’ll need to park in the main visitor carpark.

Please note, there is a charge of £5 per car.  Please bring change as machines cannot accept notes or card payments. FREE for disabled badge holders, motorbikes and coaches. £25 yearly ticket available from Reception.  Remember this money goes towards supporting this wonderful museum.

We recommend if a group of you are coming, car share! (its great for the environment too!)

Once you’ve parked your car, follow the signs through the museum to the main field where Cwtchfest is taking place. Its is based in the field next to the Tannery 

Whats on:

We have a jammed packed day organised with so much going on to keep you all busy.

Once you enter the field and receive your wristbands, you can gain access to the event throughout the day. So if you fancy taking a walk around the museum and want to pop back, you can.

Exhibitor Marquee: We have over 60 of Wales’ top wedding professionals all showcasing their products and services. Many will have great offers and discounts exclusively available on the day, make sure you take advantage!

Goody bags: we have 100 goody bags available to the first 100 B&G’s to arrive. these are filled with ACTUAL goodies and not flyers (we’re good like that).

Workshops: Starting at 12 noon we have a range of workshops running on the hour, each for 30 mins. You will be given a timetable of when each workshop is running so you can plan your day. Make sure you watch the first one…Its me :) and is my very first one…bucks fizz is being served too (nudge nudge).

Live music We are pleased to welcome Music HQ back to cwtchfest. They will be providing all the live music throughout the day and each band is available to be booked for your wedding!

Pop up tea room Head to the giant Tipi for afternoon tea and enjoy some acoustic music while you relax.

Demos situatied in the Marquee you will find hair and make up artists running demos throughout the day.

Food & drink We’re thrilled to have some DELICIOUS food & drink companies showcasing with us. You will find them dotted around the festival. Bring an empty tummy and some £’s and you’ll leave feeling very happy!

BRING CASH!

Make sure you stop off at a cash machine before you arrive!! (plenty at Culverhouse Cross!) There will be a lot of opportunity to purchase many things at the festival. There are no cash machines on site and no facility for paying by card. Please remember to bring £’S

A Big Cwtch

The festival will sadly draw to a close at 5pm. We will end the day with an epic BIG CWTCH that will be photographed for the blog.  Please join us and share the love

Owen Mathias Photography

Owen Mathias Photography

 

 

Friday Flashback Real Wedding: Rock & Roll Carnival Wedding – Tanya & Kev

Good morning Cwtchers!!!! We thought as we are celebrating our 4th birthday this week we would do a throwback Real Wedding post today to one of our first ever ones done all the way back in February 2013!!  Grab yourself a cuppa and enjoy this wonderful carnival wedding…

meAll photos in this post were taken by our very own, award winning Maria Farrelly :) (who did not write this bio herself!) Maria is located in Newport, but is always willing to travel. You can see all posts featuring her photography here.

Real Wedding: Carnival Themed Porthcawl Wedding - shot by Maria Farrelly

Tanya (a student teacher) and Kev ‘Paps’ Papworth-Morgan (a guitar tech with the Welsh rock band, Bullet for my Valentine) got married on the 1st of September 2012 at the Bridgend Registry Office, with their reception at Hi-Tide in Porthcawl. They decided on a carnival wedding theme, which featured a drinks reception from the boot of their cars, donkeys, candy floss, fairground rides, penny slots and hawaiian shirts! We asked Tanya a few questions and this is what she said:

What was your favourite part of your wedding? The fairground and amusements. Seeing all our friends get stuck in and laugh all day was just as I imagined.

Real Wedding: Carnival Themed Porthcawl Wedding - shot by Maria Farrelly

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Real Wedding: Carnival Themed Porthcawl Wedding - shot by Maria Farrelly

Why did you choose your venue? For the views over the beach and the fantastic food. Plus I didn’t want my guests to have to pay silly bar prices. Had they charged a ridiculous price for a glass of wine, we would NEVER have had the wedding there! I wanted all of our guests to feel comfortable, regardless of money, race, religion etc.

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Real Wedding: Carnival Themed Porthcawl Wedding - shot by Maria Farrelly

How did the proposal happen? (we love a good proposal story!) This is the most unromantic thing you would have ever heard. I basically got bored of waiting for Kev to propose so just told him it was time to get engaged. I picked the ring, took his bank card and paid for it. Then I gave him the ring when it arrived and asked him to give it back to me. He said ‘please put this ring on. Urm, I love you.’ That was it. He does tell me now that he regrets not giving me a proper proposal but it’s not a big deal to me!

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Any DIY stories/tutorials you’d like to share? Lots of it was DIY! My bouquet I made by using brooches from ebay and a tutorial from youtube, the name stones were pebbles that I wrote on, glittered and then varnished and I made the card box from images from Google! I wrote all the favour cards and used a heart hole punch to make them look prettier. I made the table plan too after seeing the prices people charged for something that was not going to fit my theme. Most of the signs were also made by me!!

Real Wedding: Carnival Themed Porthcawl Wedding - shot by Maria Farrelly

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What was your first dance & why? King of The Swingers from Jungle Book. Kev played this on the ukulele in a gig and then a friend remembered and it just fitted the people that we are. We don’t have a romantic song and are really not a soppy couple so something that would make people smile was totally fitting. Kev dancing like an ape was a surprise to me however!!

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In hindsight, was there anything you would have done differently? I would totally have a change of dress for the evening. I was so tired and the dress was heavy. Had I had some jammies, I would have lasted longer!

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What was your budget? Our total spend was £9000. This included £4000 on the wedding bands (I HAD to have those diamonds!), the photographer’s fee and my dress. £5,000 on everything else, Bargain wedding!!

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Do you have any advice for future brides? Don’t stress about the small things. If it’s not perfect, you will be the only person that notices. Your friends will just be delighted for you both. Try not to get too ‘weddingy’, having a simple wedding made it more fun and less stressful. 9 times out of 10, you don’t need half of the things you see online!! Enjoy your day, but don’t feel the pressure of having the best day of your life. Mine was incredible but the days afterwards were better than the wedding day, just looking at my new husband made me smile!

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Real Wedding: Carnival Themed Porthcawl Wedding - shot by Maria Farrelly

Vendors

Photography – Maria Farrelly (see all Cwtch the Bride shoots featuring Maria here)
Ceremony – Bridgend Registry Office
Reception – Hi-Tide Porthcawl
Dress – Ronald Joyce Dominique from Wedding Belles in Pyle
Shoes – River Island
Kev’s suit – Moss Bross and shoes from Camden Market
Cake – Friend’s mother in law baked the pies for us!
Flowers – Gutteridge in Bridgend and my bouquet was made from brooches
Hair and make up – Claire Davies
DJ/Band – Daz Cortina
Invites – Pretty Wild Designs

Thanks Tanya! We love how relaxed and fun your wedding feels! :) Now onto the full day’s photos…

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Happy Birthday to Cwtch The Bride! 4 Today!

CTB is 4!

Oh my, aren’t we getting old… its our fourth birthday today! hip hip.. hurray!!

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I cannot believe its been four years since my lovely little welsh wedding blog published its first post!

My team and I are so proud to have brought you some incredible things in that time, to name a few:

  • Published over 1,000 awesome wedding posts highlighting some great welsh talent and inspiration.
  • Launched the Lush List which is proving an essential ‘go-to’ resource for many welsh brides
  • Organised three epic CWTCHFEST Wedding Festivals so far, with our fourth taking place on Sunday 9th April at St.Fagans
  • Won BEST REGIONAL WEDDING BLOG! at the 2016 UK Wedding blog Awards!! (a huge BIG DEAL)
  • Run a series of Cwtch Workshops to help & inspire DIY brides
  • Helped many independent welsh wedding businesses grow by showcasing their work and promoting their services
  • Created jobs for some very special Cwtchgirls
  • Shared hundreds of real welsh weddings from across this beautiful country
  • Given some of our readers the opportunity to share their bride/groom to be diaries with us all.

Personally, I am ridiculously proud of how well Cwtch The Bride is doing and I adore working alongside some truly amazing people.
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I have many more ideas still up my sleeve and cannot wait to see them come to light. All in good time.

A Personal Thank you

I know that to many of you reading this, it can appear that we always have great fun. Laughing, singing and dancing our way through the workday with a hilarious spotify playlist. And for the most part- its true. But occasionally, something happens that can totally throw you. I mean…really knock you for six. The kind of thing that turns your world upside down, makes you want to crawl under a duvet and never come out. A life changing experience that requires an incredible group of people to help get you through it.

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This photograph was taken a year after my own marriage had ended. I was devastated and had hit a real low point of my life. Being surrounded by all things ‘wedding’ was very painful for me. Everything hurt. I didn’t tell many people. When you work in the wedding industry and your own marriage fails you feel this enormous amount of grief and shame.  And yet, I pushed through quietly. I didn’t want to let anyone down. And its thanks to these girls I got through it. I’ll forever be greatful to them for their help and support.

My CWTCHGIRLS are (without a doubt) the coolest women I’ve met in my entire life! There are a few Cwtchgirls in particular I want to give a special Thank you to.

Anna, Donna, Lindsey, Dawn and my mum … you ladies, I don’t think you’ll ever know how grateful I am to have you in my life. You have helped me get through the hardest time where I honestly thought I couldn’t cope. I felt broken and so low. Any yet you ladies where always right there for me. You picked me up when I hit the floor. when I doubted everything, you ladies encouraged me to keep going. When I wondered why on earth I’m doing all this work… you ladies just smiled and said ‘lets do it’.

Thank you for being so damn amazing. You really are very special women and I love that we get to share this awesome roller coaster ride of work and life with each other.

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Donna, the most organised office manager & friend I’ve ever had and the rock I needed to kickstart my working week. I miss you but think my book keeper misses you more! Damn I need you back soon x Owen Mathias Photography14390907_10154517804521796_7193752556001646050_n

Lindsey (aka LINDA), I wouldn’t do Cwtchfest without you! simple as that. You are a dream to work with and I am so excited at what lies ahead!

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Anna, hahaha where do i start with you? You make my Mondays & Wednesdays rock. You have taken the reins of features editor and ran with it. I bloody love ya! Plus, anyone that shares the same love of the Carpenters as me is a friend for life!

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Dawn, Our Boobless bride. Your story touched me so much I knew as soon as I read your first email and the tears rolled- we were going to be friends for life! You are an inspiration.

432047_10150735477031796_367678448_nMum. I love you. And thank you for always believing in me, even when I doubt myself. xxx

Thank you to all the inspiring welsh wedding businesses that continue to invest in Cwtch The Bride. I love that you too believe in what we do and what we stand for. I love that you support us at a time when I know all too well how difficult running a small business can be. Together we grow and I adore seeing you all benefit for our hard work. Onwards and up!

And the final thank you goes out to you lovely Cwtchers for reading, thank you for commenting, sharing and getting involved in what was a crazy idea of mine that has now become a valuable resource for many welsh brides & grooms!

So, there you have it, was rather personal but needed to be said..

There is no hot date for me tonight, no plethora of valentines day cards flooding my letter box. But I do have two very special men in my life that I adore. Josh & Joe. My boys. What more could a girl want. Hmm… we’ll see what the future brings. xxx

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And if you have just got engaged on this very special day… Welcome to Cwtch The Bride! We are a fabulous bunch of honest, hardworking women that are hear for you. This is a safe place for you to begin planning your welsh wedding and we can’t wait to meet you!

Happy Valentines Day everyone. Lets crack open a bottle of fizz and have an awesome day.

Maria x

 

 

Choose Love

Hello you lovely Cwtchers!

We’re going a little off topic today and focusing on something that has really struck a cord with us here at Cwtch HQ. As we’re all busy gearing up for Christmas this Sunday we can’t help but think of all the people in this world less fortunate than ourselves.

We’ve teamed up with some of the UK’s top wedding bloggers today and collectively we’re all posting about the awesome CHOOSE LOVE campaign to support the incredible work of Help Refugees.
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Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better, it’s not.

– Dr. Seuss

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Choose Love

Could there be a more on point message this Christmas?

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All profits from the sale of these t-shirts – designed by @katharinehamnett – will go to keeping refugees warm this winter.
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You can buy yours HERE

Help Refugees

Help Refugees provide emergency aid and vital services to those affected by the global refugee crisis. They work where governmental and other non-governmental bodies cannot, filling the gaps in services to those displaced in Europe and beyond. They are currently the primary aid-provider in Calais whilst funding and supporting projects throughout Europe and the Middle East.
They have enabled a new movement in humanitarian response, having grown and developed in the face of today’s global refugee crisis and the ever-changing needs of those affected by it. They respond rapidly to get aid and services directly to the people who need it most.They also identify the most effective grassroots groups active in the crisis and provide them with funding, enabling them to focus their time and energy on the vital work they do every day rather than on raising funds.  Ensuring everyone has access to the basic necessities such as food, water and shelter. Prioritising the provision of sufficient adapted services for the most vulnerable people affected by the the crisis, funding safe spaces for women, sexual health clinics, nurseries, schools and youth centres.

 We are currently living in a refugee crisis unseen since the Second World War. The UN estimates that 65.3 million people are now refugees, seeking asylum, or internally displaced.

 Buying one of these T-Shirts help! Get yours today. Also, this kind of gift is better late than never.  

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So please #chooselove and head to www.helprefugees.org.uk  to order yours today.
choose_love_maria_farrelly-5Big waves to all the other UK wedding bloggers that are involved today! You can check out all the activity over on Instagram: #weddingbloggersunited
If you do buy a t-shirt, we’d love to share the love!  Take a photo/selfie wearing it, Instagram your pics using the following hashtag – #chooselove and tags us in along with Help Refugees – @helprefugeesuk
Thank you and a very happy Christmas!
Maria x

Real Wedding: 1950’s Vintage Tea Party – Sophie & Gareth

Good morning you beauts,

A classic wedding never goes out of fashion! Especially the one from our very now Sophie! Just having a little throw back moment, so, sit back and enjoy…

Real Weddings Banner

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Sophie and Gareth knew they wanted a vintage wedding, and worked hard to make their day as personal as possible on a small budget. They got married on the 26th May 2012, and Sophie tells their story for us here.

Inspiration and Styling: 

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We took most of our inspiration from our love of vintage (predominantly 50’s) styling. The guests knew what to expect and dressed in their finest 50’s-style glad rags. Gareth and I met at university eight years ago (I studied Fine Art and he studied English) and we wanted to touch on this also. I used my creativity to make and style as much as I could and we collected and used vintage books. Our rings were held in our favourite ‘old book find’. We love all things vintage so we spent a good year trawling charity shops, antique fairs and car boots looking for lace and vintage tablecloths, glass vases and accessories. My mother bought us an old Singer sewing machine as a wedding gift which we used and we even found an old wind-up gramophone and lots of 78’s from the 50’s which we left outside for guests to play with. We found 2 old postcards of our home towns (Leicester and Neath) which we framed and displayed too.

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Another theme we touched on was the fact that it was the Queen’s Jubilee year. She was crowned Queen in the 50’s and one of our favourite props was a calendar we found at a flea market from 1953 celebrating the Coronation. We used this in our engagement shoot and on the day too. The vintage mis-matched china we hired sat perfectly with my tablecloths and vases and really added to the vintage tea party feel we were going for. Each guest had a tea cup on their place setting with their name attached to the handle. I also spent days making felt hearts which were attached to the teabags – it all looked gorgeous. Hot water was served in vintage teapots and we toasted the speeches with tea.

We hired an old typewriter which we used to ask guests to leave us advice on. This sat on a vintage wooden tea trolley and it went down a treat!

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One of my favourite touches was a last minute idea to write our love story. We wrote this together and printed it on to recycled brown card ourselves. We left these on the ceremony seats so guests could read it before the ceremony (we’re not fans of the traditional order-of-service). We heard it left a few in tears.

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But by far my favourite item was the 1950s rug I found. We stood on this during the ceremony and the idea behind it was that we could keep the spot we got married on forever.  It is now one of our most treasured possessions.

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Flowers:

Peonies – my favourite flower with Sweet Peas (my late Grandfather used to grow them in his garden, entering them into competitions, and I couldn’t have had a bouquet without them). The bouquets were tied with lace ribbon which belonged to my late Grandmother.

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The bouquets were arranged by our florist (who grows the flowers on her farm) and she supplied boxes of flowers which the bridesmaids and I arranged into vases and around the barn the day before the wedding.

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Vintage Wedding Sophie and Gareth - Brecon Beacons

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Vendors: 

Obviously we couldn’t handle doing EVERYTHING ourselves but we insisted on using local companies.

All photos in this post were taken by our very own, award winning Maria Farrelly :) (who did not write this bio herself!) Maria is located in Newport, but is always willing to travel. You can see all posts featuring her photography here.

Dress – Bardot by Stephanie Allin purchased at White Bride
Brides’ shoes – Venetia by Rachel Simpson
Bride’s jewellery, bag & ladies gloves – Vintage
Bridesmaid dresses – Tara Starlet
Bridesmaids’ shoes – Just Because by Seychelles Footwear
Bridemaids’ bags – Disaster Designs
Groom & Groomsmen’s suits – Slaters
Groom & Groomsmen’s brooches – Vintage – Sophie’s Grandmothers
Wedding Rings –  Sophie’s ring is vintage Tiffany & Co and Gareth’s ring was from Clive Ranger in Swansea
Ice Cream – Rowlestone Court Dairy – run by a husband and wife who make the award winning ice cream on their farm with milk from their own cows.
Food – Sugarloaf Catering – we had a BBQ in the day and a hog roast in the evening.
Venue – The Barn @ Brynich, Brecon
Music (band) – The Brothel Creepers (a local band who only play 50’s & 60’s music)
Invites – Old Black Hen
Flowers – Brecon Blooms
China Hire, Tandem bike hire, Typewriter hire – Sipping Pretty
Hair – Esme Walton, Sheer Madness
Make up – My friend Katie

The video my talented brother put together for us:

Songs:

Ceremony – Sigur Ros – Hoppipolla
Signing the register – The Beach Boys – God only Knows & Van Morrison – Brown Eyed Girl
First Dance – Andy Williams – Moon River – we LOVE Breakfast at Tiffanys and my engagement and wedding ring were Tiffany too.

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