The sun is shining, the cuckoos are cuckoo-ing and summer is on its way. At this time of year, when the evenings are light until nine o’clock, the long dark nights of autumn seem hard to recall. Yet let’s go back to October last year and enjoy the beautiful wedding of Gemma and David, who married on 1 October 2016 at the Church of All Saints, Silkstone, Barnsley, West Yorkshire with a reception afterwards at Bagden Hall, a Victorian country house in nearby Denby Dale. They celebrated with a classic and elegant day inspired by vintage botanical illustrations, with lots of lovely creative touches to honour the time of year.
Gemma, a knitwear designer, and David, who works in removals, met one Christmas through mutual friends, and got engaged on the banks of the river Danube in Budapest, marrying two years later. I absolutely adore Gemma’s choice of gown, the vintage-inspired Clarissa by one of our favourite designers Eliza Jane Howell.
“We both really love vintage and old styling and wanted this to come across on the day; my dress was vintage-look 1920’s beaded and David went for a tailored wool checked suit. The wedding took on a botanical feel. I was inspired by vintage botanical illustration plates and wanted to keep a classic and elegant feel with just candles and flowers. Due to timing in the autumn we introduced pheasant feathers within the bridal bouquet, pin holes and other room decorations.”
Photography by Shutter Go Click Photography
These images of the bridal party travelling to the church are some of my favourite – it looks like they had a really fun journey together in the cream and black bus. David and Gemma’s choice of photographer, Ryan of Shutter Go Click, has captured the vintage feel of the day so wonderfully in his images. We are very happy to list him on Little Book for Brides. Visit his listing here where you can see more of his work and take advantage of a very generous offer.
“Ryan was amazing. He captured the day beautifully and totally understood the style and look we wanted to achieve. We have hundreds of amazing photos from the day but never really noticed him being there; this is exactly what we wanted so they were natural. The effects of his photography really helped to capture the era and feel of the day. Also he was super-speedy to upload a sneak preview the following day, which was amazing to reflect on!”
The bridal bouquet with its pheasant feathers is so unusual and evokes the colours of the Yorkshire moors with its soft green, white and peach foliage and flowers. The couple chose South Yorkshire-based Frenchie Loves Flowers by Francesca Rose to style the bouquets, buttonholes and flowers for the venue.
“I wanted the flowers to have a wild botanical feel, almost like they had just been picked so lots of mixed greenery with astilbe and a few feature flowers and feathers. Francesca did the brief perfectly and it really brought the look of the day together, such an amazing talent.”
Gemma’s jewellery and gown look beautiful with her long hair, styled by two of her bridesmaids into long curls and caught back off her face.
“As a present on the morning of the wedding David surprised me with some beautiful earrings which were the same colour stone as my engagement ring, along with a matching necklace which was presented to me by my mum and dad.”
The grown-up bridesmaids wore dresses in soft mauve, designed by Gemma herself. The ladies wore their gowns with an era-inspired necklace and earring set, a gift from Gemma, and added sprigs of gypsophila to dress up their hair. The flowergirls look so cute in their pretty dresses and ballet shoes to reflect those worn by Gemma.
“I designed these as we couldn’t find the correct colour and fabric so had them made in China through a supplier I know.”
Its train pools behind her so beautifully, and the fluted sleeves are so pretty. If you love this beaded gown then take a look at some other Eliza Jane Howell designs on our Style Files, and visit her listing on Little Book for Brides, too.
“I wanted a vintage inspired dress that was fitted with a small train. I fell in love with the all-over beading and shape.”
The bride travelled to the church in a vintage car with her dad, walking down the aisle to the Irish version of Pachelbel’s ‘Canon in D’ played by Irish musicians.
The combination of harp, flute and fiddle must have sounded wonderful.
Gemma and David chose a church ceremony, something that was really important to them.
“It was important to us to have a church ceremony with readings, hymns and prayers included. Everyone has since commented about how beautiful the service was with a very personal feel.”
After the wedding, the guests travelled to Bagden Hall with the newly-weds in vintage buses – a great way to spend extra time with friends and family. The couple thoughtfully provided Prosecco and sausage rolls en route to keep hunger pangs at bay.
The Victorian country house is beautiful in itself, so needed little decoration other than lots and lots of foliage and greenery.
The tables look so elegant with their crisp white linen, sparkling china and glassware and the pure green foliage. Each table was named after a flower and vintage botanical illustration plates were used, along with a hand-painted floral botanical border painted by the couple’s talented friend Katy. Her work was also used as the basis for the wedding stationery.
“We wanted to dress the room and give it a more intimate feel that suited the day and our personalities. Again this was all centred around botanical greenery and candles. We made hanging branches with greenery, flowers and feathers to suspend over the top table, and a more simplified version to go all around the dance floor with hanging glass tea-light holders.”
“We also handmade chair decorations which were smaller versions of the pinholes with a mix of wild greenery and feathers.”
Now, if you can’t choose between sweet and savoury, why not choose both? Having a sweet and a savoury wedding cake is a genius idea, and looks spectacular.
“We love savoury and sweet so decided to have smaller versions of each including a pork pie and cheese tiered cake. My amazing mum made us a three-tier wedding cake with all our favourite flavours – red velvet, lemon and Victoria sponge. We wanted this to have a rustic feel so it was covered in butter icing with fresh flowers to decorate.”
Gemma and David’s first dance song was ‘Songbird’ by Oasis, an upbeat track with lyrics that reflected the couple, and after, music was provided by The Sinners, chosen to celebrate Gemma’s Irish roots.
“We wanted an Irish band so it included my heritage. The Sinners were amazing and had the dance floor full from start to finish.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom
“Spend time together, savour every moment and don’t leave the dance floor!”
Thank you so much Gemma and David for sharing your beautiful day with us, and thank you to Ryan from Shutter Go Click for his lovely work. If you love the botanical influences of this wedding then you can get even more inspiration from these real weddings. I hope you enjoy them. By the way, there’s a lovely video of this couple’s wedding here if you’d like to watch it.
- Photographer - Shutter Go Click
- Film - CTK Media
- Venue - The Church of All Saints, Silkstone, Barnsley and Bagden Hall, Denby Dale
- Wedding Dress - Clarissa by Eliza Jane Howell from Teokath, Wimbledon
- Veil - From Teokath
- Shoes - ASOS
- Accessories - Earrings, a gift from the groom and necklace, from her parents
- Perfume - Thierry Mugler 'Alien'
- Groom - A Chris Kerr suit, designed by the groom
- Groomsmen - Next suits and Tie Rack ties
- Bridesmaids - Designed by Gemma, ordered from China
- Flowergirls - Ordered online
- Page Boys - Navy tweed waistcoat and trousers from Next, H&M shirt and tweed bow-tie from Zara
- Florist - Frenchie Loves Flowers
- Cake - Made by the bride's mum
- Transport - Vintage buses
- Entertainment - The Sinners (no contact details)
- Rings - William and Julia Shaw Jewellers
- Catering - Bagden Hall
- Stationery - Designed by the couple's friend Katy
- Hair Stylist - The bridesmaids
- Makeup Artist - Laura from Bobbi Brown, Meadowhall