Good morning folks! You got that Friday feeling? I should darn well hope so. Only 7 more days to go until Brides The Show and a lovely weekend of relaxing in between time. In the mean time, I've got the most glorious coral and pink colour explosion to inspire you this morning.
Caroline, Editor of the very beautiful and inspiring online publication 91 Magazine (think interiors, crafting, vintage) and blogger at Patchwork Harmony tied
the knot with her beau Simon on 29th June this year at Château du Bourbet, in
Cherval, South of France. The couple chose this location and venue
because Simon's mum lives nearby and they had fallen in love with the
area whilst visiting her.
love vintage style, but I like it with a bit of modern twist so that it's not too
twee – and I hoped to create this style on the day. I knew quite early on
that I wanted coral pink peonies so I built the colour scheme around
this. I also love pastel colours so these were incorporated to
balance out the bright pink.
I spent a lot of time on
Pinterest and wedding blogs gathering ideas for the little details and
then pulled out my favourites – which were mostly things that I knew I could make
Photography Copyright (c) 2013, Pearl Pictures
"Simon and I met in 2002 while both at University of Westminster,
through friends. We'd been together for nearly 10 years when Simon
proposed in Koh Tao in Thailand in March 2012. I'd been travelling in
Vietnam and Cambodia beforehand, and he met me in Thailand to go to a
wedding of some friends of ours, in Koh Samui.
He carried my
grandmother's engagement ring with him for over a week until we were
alone in Koh Tao! We were then engaged for about 15 months before the
"Our marquee was supplied by a local company called La Bonne Fete.
They were absolutely fantastic, helping us the day before setting up,
and also on the day they helped with serving drinks and ice cream. We
hired their vintage bike from which ice-ceam was served,
and we also hired their vintage teacups. They have lots of other vintage
style options which is actually quite hard to find in that part of
France, so I was really pleased to find them and I can't recommend them
On the tables, we just had mismatched vintage lace and crochet
doilies scattered along the middle which I'd been collecting from
vintage markets. We collected jam jars for months too and dipped them in
pastel coloured paint, and our candle holders were a mix of vintage
petit four tins I bought at a French flea market for a couple of euros
(similar here) and some wee willy winkie style ones from Dotcomgiftshop. On the top table we added some pink fan bunting which I found at Pipii"
"I decorated the marquee with tissue paper pom poms which I made
myself. Hours spent at home, folding, cutting and tying on thread, and
then more hours spent a few days before the wedding with my bridesmaids
fluffing them all up! They did make the marquee look great so was worth
it! We also added fairy lights all over the ceiling."
"As I say, I knew I wanted coral peonies from the start, and wanted
a big bouquet mixed with some pastel shade roses and other flowers. I
went with white hydrangeas for the bridesmaids bouquets as I thought
this would be nice and simple next to my bouquet and also their dresses.
I also had metal buckets filled with white hydrangeas lining the aisle
to create a simple look that wasn't overfussy.
On the tables, I spent
hours upon hours at home dipping jam jars in pastel coloured paint and
then had these filled with a mix of peonies, roses and other pastel and
pink flowers for a really relaxed look. Our florist was a local French
one, who spoke little English so I was constantly emailing her photos of
the kind of thing I wanted.
I was slightly concerned a few days before
as to whether I'd got my ideas across – but when she arrived with the
flowers the evening before the big day I was overwhelmed with the
fantastic job she'd done, they were exactly what I wanted, and my
bouquet was even more beautiful than I expected. I didn't want to put it
down during the day even though it weighed a ton!
Marie Claire of Les Halles Fleuries is based in
Villebois-Lavalette in the Charente region of France."
"My dress was the Femea by Cymbeline. I bought it from Mirror Mirror in Islington, London .
It was the very first dress I tried on when shopping at Mirror Mirror
with my mum, but after the appointment I thought I preferred another
Cymbeline dress. Then my bridesmaids and I went on a little jolly to
Paris to try on dresses as I'd seen a few French designers online that
were only based in Paris (not extravagant at all!) and I tried on the
Cymbeline dresses again while we were there and we all realised that day
that the Femea was the one. The lace was beautiful and the tiny sequins
all over it added a subtle amount of sparkle.
My shoes were Sergio Rossi
– I found them at their outlet shop in Bicester Village, so they were
reduced, although still the most expensive shoes I'd ever bought!"
"Simon bought his jacket from Paul Smith
also at Bicester Village. He then built the rest of his outfit around
the jacket with a simple pink shirt, cream trousers from Reiss and a pink tie he actually already owned. His shoes were from Ralph Lauren at Selfridges."
"Getting married in rural France makes it more difficult when trying
to find suppliers. So we generally went on recommendations. The
caterers, Cendrillon Traiter,
were recommended to me by our venue, and they were really fantastic,
our meal had about 6 courses! bread, 2 starters, main course, cheese,
desserts and coffee!
had pre ceremony drinks which was a gin and elderflower cocktail we
made, served in mini milk bottles which I got from The Sweet Hostess, with stripy straws. After
the ceremony we had cava and strawberries.
"The strawberries were served
in wooden berry boxes which I ordered from Think Garnish in the States
and I then painted the edge with pastel coloured paint. The bride and groom cocktail sticks were from Pipii."
"My bridesmaid Nici in the bright coral dress found hers in a vintage shop and Lauren in the pale pink found hers on ASOS."
"My cousins and auntie made the ombre cake which
looked fantastic as well as cupcakes, my mum made the chocolate
mendiants and Lauren my bridesmaid made cookies. The macarons were shop
"Our tables were borrowed from the local Mairie (like the mayor of
the town) and the mismatched chairs we hired from a local vintage shop
The table plan I also made myself – using floral fabrics stuck onto
card to make them rigid, with some vintage lace on the bottom edge. I
then printed the seating lists on card and clipped them on with bull dog
Napkins were either vintage or made by my mum from floral fabrics. I
then added the place names which I made myself. These were just plain
tags which I painted with watercolour paint and then rubber stamped the
"For the ladies favours, I sourced lots of vintage handkerchiefs from
markets and car boot sales. We had some little fabric labels made which
said 'With Love from Simon and Caroline' which my mum stitched onto each
hankie. I then made some little paper bands to go round them that said
'For your happy tears'."
"The cake table was decorated with vintage things like some old
kitchen scales I found on eBay, glass cake stands, vintage tins and
books. I found the mini suitcase at a market which I lined with Liberty
wrapping paper, and our guest book was an old copy of The Lovers
Pocketbook which has beautiful illustrations by Raymond Peynet inside.
We also had some cute ice cream cone blowing bubbles for the guest to
play with which I got from The Hambledon."
"I'm not a big fan of wedding cakes, I kind of dislike how perfect they
look and am always shocked at how expensive they are! So we decided to
go for the traditional French wedding cake, a croque en bouche, which is
a tower of profiteroles drizzled with caramel. I'd spotted one on
Pinterest which just had sprigs of lavender added to it which I thought
looked stunning so we asked the local pâtissier to do the same for us.
We then had a cake table with lots of other goodies, mostly which were
made by my family."
"Our photographer was Jemma Watts of Pearl Pictures.
I'd worked with Jemma in the past on 91 Magazine and we'd got friendly,
and I knew she would be the perfect person to have as our wedding
I knew that of Jemma would get on with my friends and family which was
really important to me as she would be spending a few days with us all
in France. Jemma did just that, and everyone commented on how great she
was on the day, running around capturing every single little detail."
"My necklace and earrings were vintage – they were my grandmothers when she was alive."
"My friend Siobhan who is a hairdresser did mine and the bridesmaids hair. I did my own make up. I had two little flowers in my hair that were custom made by Gil Fox."
"My Dad (who got quite emotional!) gave me away. I came in to
'Sea of Love' by Cat Power, and we walked back up the aisle to Quando,
Quando, Quando by The Drifters!"
"We worked closely with our celebrant Christine
to put together the entire ceremony. We had to fill in questionnaires
months before about our relationship, how we met, what we love about
each other etc. So her words were really personal to us, and as we
didn't want a religious ceremony our vows were also personal to us. At
the end, Christine presented us with a wooden box, which was a surprise
gift for us. Inside is a bottle of wine and the love letters she'd
asked us to write to each other. We are not supposed to open it until
our 5th wedding anniversary!
Two of our
closest friends did readings which they had put together themselves
which were really touching. A line from one of the readings was: “Love
is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential
to your own. So beautiful."
"Illustrator Charlotte Love
did the illustrations for our save the dates & invites. I then
printed them myself and added extra details with lace ribbon and fabric
washi tape. She also created some floral illustrations which I was then
able to use on the fans I made for the ceremony, the table plan etc.
The ceremony was incredibly simple with the buckets of flowers and
wooden benches, with just the fans I made and little bags of rose petal
confetti added for each guest. I loved the little confetti bags which I found on Etsy as they said 'une promesse de bonheur' which means 'a promise of happiness' on them."
"My ring is from Rust
– I'd been lusting over their jewellery for years so when we got
engaged I knew I wanted my wedding ring from there. I went for the
platinum 2mm floral carved ring. Simon just wanted a simple gold band which we got from Ernest Jones."
"The favours for the men were a set
of black framed glasses (found on Amazon) which replicated the glasses
Simon wears, as well as a temporary tattoo that Charlotte Love designed
for us, that said 'Caz and Si Forever'.
We wanted it designed in the
style of Americana tattoos but still in a pretty colour palette,
Charlotte got it perfect! I then made the little pouches for them
"We made our own entertainment! Again I'm not a fan of cheesy
wedding bands or DJs so we just had a playlist set up on Spotify on a
laptop and hooked it up to some speakers. The tissue pom poms became
great props for dancing with! And the night ended with me winning the
Our first dance was 'Since I first met you' by The Robins. We don't
really have 'a song' so we spent ages listening to tracks and trying to
find something which we thought the words summed up our relationship
and that also fitted the feel of our day. This was perfect.""
"It's so hard to choose a favourite moment from our wedding day – I loved it all so much!
Although at the end of my dad's speech, he read out a letter from my
best friend (who I've known since I was 4 years old). Sadly Jan couldn't
come to the wedding as she was very close to having her second baby,
and with a slightly difficult pregnancy she wasn't allowed to travel.
were both gutted she couldn't come especially as she was supposed to be
my third bridesmaid, but of course her health and the baby were more
important. The letter my dad read out from her was so beautiful and
really made me well up and I think a lot of our guests did too!"
Words of Wedded Wisdom…
"Put your heart and soul into the
little details. Yes it means more work for you, but its those little
touches that everyone loves and people commented loads on how much work
I'd put into the small details to make it that bit extra special.
with what YOU love, not what is tradition. I didn't want a traditional
cake and I didn't want to 'cut the cake' as I always find it a bit
cheesy, so we didn't do it. I don't think anyone even noticed as they
were having too much fun!
Make your day as personal to you as you
can. A cookie cutter wedding is so boring. Express your personalities
through your choices, from your vows to your favours to the music. Your
guests will love it so much more as there will be little surprises for
them throughout the day.
I stayed at the chateau the night
before, so only had to walk myself down the stairs, and Simon was
staying round the corner at his mums so we didn't need any transport."
What a fabulous colour explosion! I absolutely adore this wedding and it's fantastic reassurance too, to all those couples who are keen to get married abroad.
May I also encourage you to visit and get a little bit lost in a world of inspiration over at Caroline' 91 Magazine – I think you'll love it if you don't already.
What do you love most about this wedding? Do we have any other brides planning a wedding in another country?
Photographer – Pearl Pictures
Marquee + vintage bike + teacups – La Bonne Fete
Celebrant – Christine
Venue – Château du Bourbet, in
Cherval, South of France
Brides Dress – Cymbeline via Mirror Mirror in Islington, London
Flowers in her hair – custom made by Gil Fox
Brides' shoes – Sergio Rossi
Bride's accessories – vintage/family heirloom
Groom's Attire – Paul Smith
suit + Reiss jacket/shirt/trousers + Ralph Lauren at Selfridges shoes
Bridesmaids – vintage (coral dress) + ASOS
Flowers – Marie Claire of Les Halles Fleurie
Favours – vintage handkerchiefs + Temporary Tattoo favours designed by Charlotte Love
Additional Styling –
Rings – platinum 2mm floral carved ring from Rust
Catering – Cendrillon Traiter
Stationery – Charlotte Love
Ice cream cone blowing bubbles – The Hambledon
Pink fan bunting + bride and groom cocktail sticks – Pipii
Tables borrowed + mismatched chairs hired via Unik
Mini bottles for the pre-ceremony drinks – The Sweet Hostess