Claire and Christian’s Relaxed City Chic Wedding by Maria Farrelly Photography

We’re so excited to share todays wedding with you all! 

If you followed our blog last year, you will have enjoyed following Claire’s journey to the alter. If you missed her posts, you can take a look hereClaire & Christian commissioned Cwtch The Bride’s creator and leading wedding photographer Maria Farrelly Photography to capture their relaxed and super stylish ceremony at the Council Chamber, City Hall, Cardiff followed by at relaxed reception at the Norwegian Church, Cardiff bay. 

We think you’ll agree by the expressions on their faces that this day was every bit how they imagined and much more!

Wedding333What was your budget? 

In all honesty, we didn’t really have one… Not because we’ve got money to burn but we knew that we wanted a wedding which suited us as a couple… Laid back and down to earth. So, we knew from the start that we wouldn’t be spending huge amounts of money on unnecessary or extravagant things which we didn’t really need. Its so easy to get carried away when you start planning a wedding but I think we were fairly disciplined!Wedding334

How would you describe your wedding theme?

Laid back, relaxed and full of love!Wedding315

What was your favourite part of your wedding?

It’s so hard to pick a favourite part! I loved it all! I think my favourite part though was the moment I walked into the Council Chamber room at City Hall, where our ceremony took place, and seeing Christian waiting for me. In about five seconds, I felt so many emotions… Relief that he was there, a flood of love and a burst of happiness at seeing all my family and friends.Wedding114

Tell us about your Wedding Dress

Ahhhh my wedding dress! Love, love, love it! I wrote a blog post for Cwtch the Bride about my experience, you can read it here! I was determined not to trawl around a million and one shops trying on hundreds of dresses… That’s just not me. I did some research online about shops and narrowed my list down to three shops. Literally, at the first shop, I was convinced that I’d found “THE dress” but I’m so glad that I went to the other two shops as it was at the third shop (All About Eve in Newport) that I found THE dress. I would advise any bride to be to not be swept away with the whole ‘trying on dresses’ experience. It’s so easy to do as the dresses are so gorgeous but focus, focus, focus is key! I ordered my dress in a size 10, paid a deposit then two months later found out I was pregnant!! Luckily, I managed to get into the dress with only a quarter of inch let out needed (to accommodate my slightly bigger post baby boobs!).Wedding064Wedding301

Who did you pick as your bridesmaids &/or best man and why?

My sister was my only bridesmaid. I have three best friends who I would’ve loved to have had as bridesmaids but I wanted a laid back, relaxed wedding and I think that walking in with a troupe of bridesmaids slightly deviates from that theme! I toyed with the idea of having no bridesmaids but my sister and I are so close, I really couldn’t have said “I do” without her being there with me.Wedding020

Why did you choose your venue?

We chose City Hall for our ceremony as it’s such an iconic city centre landmark. The building is beautiful and we picked the Council Chamber room as its steeped in history and all the seating is in a circle around the room. We just loved the idea of getting married in the middle of the room with all our guests around us. The Norwegian Church for our reception venue suited us perfectly. It’s extremely laid back but in a beautiful setting in the Bay.Wedding061Wedding563

Tell us about your photographer

Maria Farrelly! What can I say?! Just amazing! Maria knew exactly what we wanted and had so many ideas for us to incorporate our wishes, she was brilliant.Wedding343

How did the proposal happen? 

I wrote a blog post for Cwtch the Bride about this too! Christian and I had booked a city break to Stockholm for my 34th birthday. My birthday was on a Friday which is the day we flew to Sweden. On the Saturday night, we’d booked a table at Gondolen restaurant to celebrate my birthday and we were happily discussing how we’d started dating and how amazing it was that we were together when Christian popped the question! It was completely unexpected and Christian had hidden the ring in his sock in his luggage!Wedding531Wedding355

Any DIY stories/tutorials you’d like to share?

I’m not much of a DIYer if I’m honest!Wedding384

What was your first dance & why?

We didn’t really have a first dance in the traditional sense of the word. We picked a song which meant a lot to us and held lots of happy memories and invited everyone up with us to dance. The song was Edge of Seventeen by Stevie Nicks and reminds us both of a road trip we took from LA to San Fran on the Pacific Highway. We hired a Ford Mustang (convertible obvs!) for the journey and this song came on our playlist as we were leaving LA via Mulholland Drive. We were both singing along, the sun was blazing and we were free as Bees! Such a happy time made this song a no brainier for our first dance.Wedding582Wedding681

In hindsight, was there anything you would have done differently?

Nothing at all. As cheesy as it sounds, the day was exactly as we wanted.Wedding266

Do you have any advice for future couples?

My only advice would be to stick to what you wanted when you first started planning your wedding. It’s so easy to get carried away with things during the planning process, especially when Pinterest etc are easily accessible, but stick to your guns and you’ll end up with the wedding that you always wanted at the beginning.Wedding309

What’s the best piece of marriage advice you received?

We didn’t really receive any advice that I can remember! I think our vows are good advice though if they count!Wedding149

What was your favourite thing about planning a wedding?

I think just sitting down with Christian (normally with a glass of wine up until I found out I was pregnant!) and discussing our plans made me realise how suited we really were. We both liked and disliked the same things and, not that I needed any reassurance, but the planning process firmly rooted in that we were meant to be together.Wedding265Wedding326

The Suppliers

Photographer: Maria Farrelly
Ceremony Venue: City Hall, Cardiff
Reception Venue: Norwegian Church, Cardiff Bay
Bride’s Dress: Justin Alexander Signature at All About Eve, Newport
Bride’s Shoes: Monsoon
Bride’s Jewellery: Handmade
Groom’s Outfit: Hugo Boss
Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Coast
Bridesmaid’s Accessories: Handmade
Cake: Lindsey Bowles (friend)
Flowers: Centrepieces by Joanne Hodgetts (friend), bouquets by Flower Power in Church Village
Hair: Davina Morgan (friend)
Make Up: Tina Payne at Soul Beauty, Ystrad Mynach 
DJ: Boutique Disco
Stationery: Ann Hewitt (friend)
Transport: Happy Days Cars

The Wedding Album

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I think that you will agree with me that Claire and Christian’s relaxed city chic wedding looked amazing. If you would like more inspiration for your wedding coma and join us at Cwtchfest! Wales’ only Wedding Festival on Sunday 17th April at Glanusk Estate.  It is going to be even bigger than last years event and we have even more amazing Welsh wedding professionals on board. Quick get your tickets here! ~ Kate



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