With the promise of April on the horizon, this is a wonderful cwtch of Victoria and Ryan, embracing the rainy weather, or rather, ignoring it and enjoying each other in a gorgeous cwtch. The lovely Kate Richards shared this gorgeous shot with us just before they got married last weekend (3rd March 2017)……
Victoria and Ryan’s Rainy Cwtch
Victoria and Ryan, from Pontypool and getting married in Bryngarw House, Bridgend. We did this pre-wedding shoot at Dare Valley Country Park on a very rainy day, but they hardly noticed the weather!
We’re very excited to see some the wedding images that Kate will be sharing with us soon, so watch this space, and congratulations to the new Mr and Mrs, Victoria and Ryan xx
Today’s real wedding is by the amazing from Rocksalt Photography. Can you believe this beautiful bride to be even organised her wedding date around Hannah’s availability! I love Rachel and Stewart’s rustic woodland wedding and all the homemade touches. I hope you love it as much as I do…..it makes me long for some sunshine on my skin.Come on summer we are waiting for you….Enjoy! ~ Kate
How would you describe your wedding theme?
A rustic woodland wedding, if that makes sense… I’m a farmer’s daughter and my husband is a carpenter so I wanted to incorporate these aspects of our lives in the wedding as they are very important to us. I even had acorn jewellery made as Stew is slightly obsessed with oak and I thought it would be a subtle nod to his profession!
What was your favourite part of your wedding?
It was lovely to have family and friends all in one place and mingling so well together. Stew also left me gobsmacked (quite literally!) as he’d arranged for a aeroplane to fly overhead with a ‘congratulations’ banner, which was pretty cool!
Tell us about your Wedding Dress
If I’m honest, I was dreading the process of finding a wedding dress! I imagined six foot modelesque women scrutinizing me but the reality was quite different… Once I got started, I loved it and got slightly carried away travelling as far as Leicester to try specific designers and dresses I’d seen in magazines. Poor mam! I knew I wanted floral lace, a pretty back and a bow (random, I know) but I couldn’t find ‘The One’ – and that was the problem. I didn’t get that feeling where I knew this one dress was it. In fact, I’d tried my dress on quite a few times as it kept re-appearing wherever we went and every time I tried it on I loved it more and more. In the end, I went back to Shropshire Country Brides where I’d first seen my Mori Lee number. Sam (the owner’s daughter) added a belt from another dress to mine and suddenly the choice was easy. Decision made, at last!
Who did you pick as your bridesmaids &/or best man and why?
Stew chose two school friends as his best men and his nephews as page boys. I chose my best friend Elain and my husband’s sister Sam as the bridesmaids, and my nieces as flower girls.
Why did you choose your venue?
I always wanted to marry in the local chapel and had my heart set on a reception at home on the family farm. Dad did have concerns about it raining and ruining the day but my brother convinced me to stick to my guns. I thought I was going to regret that decision in the week leading up to the wedding as it poured down and the floor of the marquee was soaked on the Tuesday. Someone must have been watching over us as we ended up having fantastic weather! We wanted a ‘smart casual’ feel to the marquee so we decided not to have lining and to use festoon lights instead of chandeliers. We really liked the idea of creating different spaces so we divided the area using a small picket fence and created a floral archway, which could double up as a backdrop for photographs if it rained (not that we needed to worry in the end).
Tell us about your photographer
Hannah (Rocksalt) was the only photographer for me and her availability actually determined the date of our wedding. She understood what we wanted from our first meeting and made us both feel relaxed on the day. She kept things moving; so much so we were ahead of schedule! We had Leri (Leri Lane Photography) as a second photographer and she was a fantastic addition, capturing moments in the boys’ household that would have otherwise been missed.
How did the proposal happen?
Stew proposed while we were on holiday in Austria. We were skiing the last run on the last day when Stew said he’d go on ahead down a black run and I could meet him at the bottom of the red run (yes, I was tired and wingeing by this point and wanted the easiest route!) After tackling a mountain of ice, I took off my helmet and had a bit of a rant before realising that Stew had fallen. I went over only to discover that he had a ring in hand and was actually on one knee and about to propose. By this point the slopes were empty so it was just the two of us, which made it all the more special.
Any DIY stories/tutorials you’d like to share?
I took advantage of my family and friends’ many hobbies and talents! Mam and Stew’s mum made the wedding cake while my auntie Sarah decorated it. Auntie Lucy and uncle Paul created the confetti cones using doilies, and turned the place name cards into favours by filling tiny plastic bags with wild flower seeds. My teaching friends were stars too: one created a Welsh verse to accompany the favours, another created activity booklets for the page boys and flower girls, and the D.T teacher helped me design wooden thank you plaques and created table numbers and the order of the day on pieces of oak. Stew, his workers and our neighbour Bill made so many things including the centrepieces, the signposts, the pathway leading to the marquee, the archway and fencing inside, and even a wooden post box. The list goes on and on and there are more people to thank than there’s room to mention here…
What was your first dance & why?
We chose Shania Twain’s Still the One – as cheesy as it sounds, the lyrics fitted us perfectly as we first got together in 2001, and good old Shania was a favourite when I was in my teens.
In hindsight, was there anything you would have done differently?
Yes! I would have set a deadline for us all to finish preparations the day before. I’d planned for a few close friends to stay over so we could watch Bridesmaids and have a few Proseccos. Instead, we worked on the marquee until 12.30am and I sat in bed writing thank you cards at 2am. Stew and the boys were still busy adding final touches on the morning of the wedding so he only arrived at the chapel at 11.30am and had no time to welcome guests. Oops! Another last minute panic to avoid is the process of creating invitations. Finalising a design, producing and proofreading the text, and compiling addresses takes a lot of time, especially when you’re producing them in Welsh and English!
Do you have any advice for future couples?
Share the experience (or at least ask him what he thinks, and take on board what he tells you even if you don’t like it!) The groom can sometimes be forgotten and I really liked the idea of the day being a reflection of Stew and his interests, as well as mine.
What’s the best piece of marriage advice you received?
We’ve been given a lot of little pieces of advice along the way… I would say to be supportive of each other’s ambitions and leave plenty of room for laughter. (But don’t laugh at their ambitions, that wouldn’t be a good idea…!)
What was your favourite thing about planning a wedding?
Planning a wedding can be daunting but I was overwhelmed by the kindness of my friends and close family who were so supportive and excited to help. I took every opportunity to include them so it was great to take time out of our otherwise hectic lives to spend together. The National Wedding Shows were also a lot of fun, giving us the chance to look around and be inspired (aka pinch ideas), as well as have afternoon tea and champagne ‘to celebrate’ each time!
We have something a little different for you today. One of our readers, who wishes to remain anonymous, has contacted us because (like many other newlyweds) she is living with the post wedding blues. She decided to write a post about it, which I hope she found as cathartic as I found writing my wedding day regrets post. I’m sure many of you will relate so once you have read please leave a comment to let us know how you feel and how you are getting over the wedding blues yourselves.
Living with the ‘wedding blues’
As all you previous brides will already know and all of you brides to be are about to find out, your wedding day really is the best day of your life. I know everyone always tells you this, but I think you get so sucked up into the whole planning process that it’s only the day after the wedding that you really appreciate it how true it is. My sister told me before my wedding that if you could bottle the feeling you have on the day, you could sell it for millions. I’d say more like billions. However, what people don’t tell you, is how you’ll probably feel afterwards….
I don’t know about all of you other brides, but personally I loved the planning process. Maybe some of you rejoiced after the wedding and were thankful that life could return to normal but I was the exact opposite. I have to say that it is the most bizarre feeling knowing that it’s all over and I am now officially living with wedding blues. Ok, so I can imagine all of you brides to be thinking how ridiculous this all sounds and telling me to get a grip. Well, here are a few reasons why I think the wedding blues are very real:
1. Number one has to be the most obvious. It is the massive void you now have in your life from not having anything to plan. I loved researching suppliers, reading blogs and magazines to get inspiration and going to planning meetings. Virtually all of my spare time (and I must admit, probably a third of my work time!) was spent wedding planning. It literally took over my life and I loved every second of it.
2. Your wedding is probably the only day that you will have all of your favourite people, family and friends, in one place. You look around the room and see everyone you love.
3. You will probably never feel as beautiful as you do on the day of your wedding and that is actually quite a depressing feeling. When will you ever get the opportunity to wear a beautiful princess dress, justify spending a fortune on shoes, get your hair and makeup done by professionals and have a photographer following you around all day. On that day it is all about you and you feel like a celebrity. Everyone comes up to you telling you how amazing you look. The day after your wedding, no one tells you how amazing you look.
4. You become infatuated with looking at the photos! The day goes by so quickly that you feel like you didn’t have a chance to take everything in. All those weeks planning and imagining what everything would look like and you didn’t even notice the tiny details which a few days before you were obsessed with!
5. You’re both now skint after spending all of your money on your dream wedding that you now can’t even afford some retail therapy to try and make yourself feel better, let alone plan a trip to take your mind off how depressed you are.
6. You watch what you eat and train the hardest in the gym that you ever have before to make sure you look the best can you on your wedding day. Then you go on honeymoon and remember what it’s like to be able to eat and drink what you want and take it to the extreme. You look in the mirror when you get home and have to accept that you’ll never have the same ‘gymspiration’ as you did before the wedding.
7. Although your wedding is still at the forefront of YOUR mind and you’re trying to keep its memory alive, people stop asking you about it and it feels like it’s now a distant memory.
So you have the best day of your life, jet off on your honeymoon and have the most wonderful time, come back to your beautiful professional photos and videos to relive the day and then what? Back to the rain, back to work, back to reality… and reality sucks!