DIY Tutorial: Bride and Groom Hay Bales

Planning a marquee wedding on a Welsh farm this summer? If so, you are going to LOVE this DIY tutorial featuring Bride & Groom Hay Bales.

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All images © Maria Farrelly Photography

Last year I photographed Beth & Matt’s beautiful wedding on a farm in Magor.  I love photographing farm weddings. Not only do I get to enjoy some epic views across the Welsh countryside but generally EVERYONE in the town/village appears to gets an invite! and everyone seems to be involved in some way in the lead up to the big day. I love that!

When it comes to styling a farm wedding, the Rustic theme tends to be a clear winner. And why not, its certainly fitting for the landscape.   Homemade & DIY tend to feature in some way. Generally its the favours, the flowers, the cake ….but I have to say, when I arrived at this wedding, I was gobsmacked. I’ve NEVER seen a giant B&G made of hay bales before!

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Fabulous, aren’t they!

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They certainly fitted in well and were a huge talking point throughout the day.

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You could see them from miles away and the guests certainly loved them. Haybale Mr & Mrs DIY Maria Farrelly_005

they also made a great prop for photographs :)

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How to make them:

Thankfully, Beth’s friends took some pictures as they were being made. As you can see, a tractor is essential!

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Once the hay bales were stacked, they used huge white sheets (for the wedding dress) and black bags (for the grooms suit),

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For the eyes- paper plates, lips-red bin liner, Veil- netting, grooms hat- a tyre & bucket. The brides cleavage- I believe it was 2 balls or 2 balloons :) Simple! Haybale Mr & Mrs DIY Maria Farrelly_010

If you are doing something unusual for your welsh wedding this year, email us at to let us know! we’d love to feature it.

Hello, Goodbye!

Here at Cwtch we know that once you’ve planned your wedding and finally said “I do” that it’s nice to carry on the magic for a while and share your experiences with all the lucky people who are still planning their walk down the aisle! :)

It’s time to say goodbye to our “DIY Budget Bride” Sarah…

Sadly, some good things do come to an end, and our Budget DIY bride is moving on! She’s been here from the start of Cwtch way back in 2013, after getting married in September 2012. Here’s a few of her favourite posts from the blog, in case you’re new here or just fancy a catch up! :)


Image: © Maria Farrelly Photography 

& say hello to our new “Homemade Bride”, Kate! :)

It’s not all sad news though – we’ve got a new bride-to-be joining the team! It’s none other than Kate Petersen, aka the “Homemade Bride”! :) Kate is getting married in December, and will be blogging all her makes and ideas along the way. Welcome to the team, Kate! :)

Kate PetersenImage: © Maria Farrelly Photography

PS. Thinking she looks familiar? Kate is not only one of our blog sponsors, she’s also been on the blog a few times already, offering hair tutorials and more! :)

Kate’s first post is coming up at lunchtime today :)


Team Cwtch


All About Buttonholes by Verity at Blush

This is the fourth in a series of posts from South Wales florist, Verity at Blush Floral Art (see the full set here). She’s going to be delving into the world of floral trends, tips and advice for making the most of your bouquets and inspiration for your big day. In this post she’s giving you ideas for buttonholes and has put together a tutorial for making your own buttonholes too – thanks Verity!

It’s not very often that you get the excuse to accessorise an outfit with fresh flowers or corsages. Weddings are a great opportunity to accessorise and today’s blog post focuses on floral detailing from buttons to corsages. It’s not all for the girls either, this is the boys chance to really go to town on detailing :)

The main things to think about when designing your buttonholes are colour, style & size – another important thing to think about is flower choice (some flowers will stand up well to a full day out of water without drooping, whilst others might start to wilt quite quickly if it is a hot day!)

This anemone buttonhole was a special choice for the groom & each of the ushers had a different ‘posy style buttonhole’ but because it is a delicate flower, it was kept in water until the last minute to keep it looking perfect for the main event! Star shaped astrantia gave the buttonholes a delicate feel.

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You could choose to coordinate the father of the bride and the groom’s button with the bridal bouquet, but make them a little different from the rest of the Groomsmen to let them stand out.

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Gorgeous and statement with a ribbon wrapped stem, choosing covered or wired stems immediately gives a more ‘finished’ formal feel. This is a beautiful example of  a larger style buttonhole with a vuvuzela rose and peachy astilbe, which would look gorgeous against a charcoal grey suit :)

Bare stems and a ‘posy style’ can give a different more ‘relaxed’ informal feeling. This buttonhole was designed to fit in with the autumnal theme and the orange ranunculus and rose hips are designed to tone in with the orange silk ties. Using twine instead of ribbon gives it a rustic feel.

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Don’t feel like you have have to stick to roses or even flowers for your buttonholes though! You can incorporate a variety of materials and elements into your designs – gems, jewellery, ribbons and paper flowers are all getting more popular.

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Here for this spring wedding we used moss, twigs and leaves with only a few tiny flowers and a beautiful spiky thistle to give a really unusual feel to the buttonholes. They also included some dried lavender which smells amazing (but a warning – it doesn’t stand up well to overenthusiastic hugging as it can be quite brittle!)

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If you’re planning a winter wedding a pinecone buttonhole makes a nice seasonal touch that guests can keep.

If you are planning on using ribbons in your designs you don’t have to choose plain satin ‘bridal’  ribbon! many of our brides this year have opted for wilder ribbon choices like lace or twine – it’s another way to incorporate texture, colour and detail into your flowers.

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If you’re not sold on the idea of buttonholes, or if your outfit has quite a lot of detail already, then you could opt for a wrist corsages or floral decoration for your clutch bag instead :)

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DIY Tutorial: Make your own buttonholes or corsage

The same technique can also be used to make floral place setting sprigs, so don’t be afraid to experiment! :)

What you need:

  • Florist tape – I like a crepe stem tape
  • fine wire (here we are just using it to wire our feathers to help them sit in our ‘posy’ buttonhole)
  • scissors to trim stems and ribbon
  • Selection of flowers, foliage & grasses or something with unusual textures works well

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Step 1: wrap wire and then tape around the quills of your feathers so that they can easily be incorporated into the buttonhole

Step 2: bind flowers & feathers and any foliage into a posy shape & tape in place

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Step 3: Once your posy is secure, chose a trim to finish it which enhances your theme. I picked twine to give a rustic feel but you could use ribbon, fabric scraps or even something fun like tinsel!

Step 4: trim your stems to size & any loose ends of twine to suit. Ta da! :)

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you could even use these as place settings or little posy favours! :)

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Hope you’ve enjoyed this post – do let me know if you decide to DIY some of your wedding floral elements!

Lots of love,

Verity x

Tutorial: How To Subscribe To Cwtch The Bride

We’ve been going for a few months now, so we thought we’d put together a little tutorial on how to subscribe to the blog (we know that we’ve got a few regular readers!) to make it a bit easier for you to get your daily dose of Cwtch! :)

There are three ways you can subscribe to us. First up:

1. Subscribe by email

This is probably the easiest way to make sure you don’t miss any of our posts – have them sent directly to your inbox! :) On the right hand side of the blog you’ll see our sidebar – this is where you can browse our categories, check out our lovely blog sponsors (hi guys!) and also search the site if you’re looking for something specific.

To subscribe to the blog just look for the section on the right that looks like this:

How to subscribe to the blog by email

pop your email address in and click subscribe – easy peasy!

Once you’ve subscribed, every time we publish a post it’ll arrive in your inbox looking  a little something like this…

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You’ll get the full post in your inbox, with a link at the bottom to come to the comment section – handy if you have something you’re dying to say! (We love getting comments so please don’t be shy! :) )

The only thing you’ll miss out on if you only read our posts via email and don’t come to the site is the galleries we sometimes add (like in this post from Stephanie Allen) and any videos we link to. For some reason they don’t want to show up in the emails, we’re not sure why. Just click the title of the post (in the blue) in the email to be taken to the website and you’ll be able to see all the content! :)

2. Subscribe to our feed

Secondly, you can subscribe to our blog feed using a number of options – this is called RSS. One of the most popular platforms to use is Bloglovin’, but you can also use websites like Feedly. (If you’ve heard of Google Reader these programs do the same job now that Google Reader has sadly retired).

Subscribe to Cwtch the Bride using Bloglovin'

Subscribe to Cwtch the Bride using Bloglovin’

Subscribe to Cwtch the Bride using Feedly

Subscribe to Cwtch the Bride using Feedly

Subscribing to our feed is relatively simple – if you already have an account with an RSS reader (that’s what they’re called for people not in the know!) then just add as a subscription (or click here to follow on Bloglovin’) and voila, all our posts will be there waiting for you whenever we update. If you don’t have an account already then you can sign up to Bloglovin’ here or Feedly here. You can use them to keep track of as many blogs as you want and they both have smartphone apps. Handy!

3. Follow us via social media

Thirdly, we always post the links to our new content on our Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest feeds, so you can always follow us there to make sure you see our new content :) We also post other content on those channels so they’re worth following even if you already subscribe by email or RSS.

You can find us on Twitter at @cwtchthebride

Our Facebook link is here

& we have lots (and lots!) of boards on Pinterest for all of you guys who are in the midst of wedding planning to browse here.

Et voila! Three simple ways of keeping up to date will all things Cwtch :) let us know in the comments if you have any other suggestions!