A Relaxed, Beach and Barn Wedding in November…

Good afternoon – thanks to those of you for leaving kind comments on this morning's real wedding feature – which also happens to be the first ever wedding held at St Pancras Station! Amazing!

So, earlier today, I eluded to having had some fun this weekend 🙂 I had a pretty stressful week last week, so come Saturday night, I was ready to let my hair down as guest at the very, very lovely and talented Photographer Emma Case's 30th birthday party – a 1950's high school prom themed affair, which turned out to actually be Emma's wedding!!  Emma had secretly got married on the Saturday afternoon, to her lovely boy Pete and they had a blessing that evening, surrounded by unsuspecting friends and family. It was so incredibly emotional, and what a way to pull it all off.  Tears strolled down my cheeks a-plenty they did!  Official Photographer for the day, Steve Gerrard, has already sneaked a few images out – do go see!!  I can't wait to see more images … {and I must add here, that I felt out of this world in my beautiful, bespoke, made to measure strapless back prom dress, with MASSES of heavenly tulle and the biggest petticoat you have ever seen, all thanks to Dana Bolton from Once Upon a Time Designs!}.

So this afternoon, in homage to my friend and colleague, lovely Emma Case, I am featuring a wedding that Emma photographed late last year.  This is the wedding of Pip and Dan, who tied the knot in Norfolk, in November…

Yes, that's a November wedding, on the beach. And I imagine it was possibly a little cold in that pretty strapless dress, but what lovely photographs!

Love My Dress Wedding Blog – Photography Copyright (c) 2011, Emma Case




"We were initially weighing up the options between a London (where we live) wedding, or a Norfolk (where I grew up) wedding, or somewhere completely different. We were quite keen on a Christmassy wedding, but since one of my closest friends was due to get married in December, we needed to avoid that so then veered towards an autumnal wedding, which then got pinned down to a Bonfire Weekend wedding which seemed to suit a rural, Norfolk barn over a contemporary, London venue.

The Barn is on a farm estate just outside Burnham Market in North Norfolk. As well as the venue itself being great, the surroundings are amazing too – you drive up a long track with fields and trees around you, then horses and a pond, and various other farm buildings. Lovely! And one of the best things was that there are a number of holiday cottages on the farm estate too, so we were able to offer those to close family and friends and stay and get ready there ourselves . It was so lovely having people there all weekend – I popped in on my mates and family on the morning of the wedding and it was a great start to the day!"





"My dress was bought from Crystal Weddings in Norwich. I had thought I definitely wanted something lace, but not meringue-like or blingy. I tried on a few 'possibles' at this shop, but pretty much knew when I tried on my dress that I'd get it.   And not just because it was a bargain!!  It was an ex sample dress, was too big, and a bit tatty on the bottom, plus it had quite a lot of sparkle (bling?!) to the dress as well as the vintage-style beading all the way across the front of the dress -  but it was perfect for me!"


"Ah, my lovely Vivienne Westwood Shoes! A nice little story to go with these. I actually ended up winning these shoes from a competition on a US fashion blog! I'd seen them on lots of blogs when I first got engaged and thought how they would be perfect – but were then impossible to track down in any shops or online stores in that colourway. So I was trying to decide whether to get them in a different colour then stumbled upon a US fashion blog which was running a competition in conjunction with the shoe company Melissa to win a pair of the Vivienne's but in the blue and ivory colour. I thought I might as well enter and was then totally shocked to get an email a few weeks later to tell me I'd won them. I had to check if I could win as I was based in the UK – they said that would be fine as long as I covered the postage charge (about $25). 'Of course' I said, and while I was asking the questions, I thought I may as well see if they had a pair  in the ivory and red colour I ideally wanted.

The head office of Melissa got back to me to tell me the only pair they had in that colour had been worn once for a corporate fashion show for about 10 minutes, but they were mine if I wanted them. So I paid for them to be sent over from the US and they were my dream wedding shoes – all I'd spent on them was less than $25 on postage. Bonus!"  



"We feel lucky to have stumbled on another gem with our florist, Tessa Papworth.

I was having trouble finding any recommendations for local florists, and not being local myself was making the task a bit more difficult, so I suddenly had a brainwave of asking someone else from the area. I'd come across the blog 'Wellies and Vogue' which was charting the blogger's (Tori's) plans for her own wedding in North Norfolk. I emailed Tori out of the blue asking if she was able to recommend any local suppliers, and she kindly got back in touch to say her aunt was going to be doing her wedding flowers and she would love to talk to me about mine. So off I went to meet Tessa one weekend and again, it was such a simple decision to go with her. I took along a few pictures but had no idea of names of flowers or anything technical – but Tessa totally got it and was so lovely too! We loved all of the flowers on the day – Tessa did an amazing job, and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend her. She took my vague 'autumny' thoughts and crafted them into something beautiful…"




"I wore a flower clip in my hair all day – bought from……BHS! One of my many bargains for the wedding.

I also wore a diamond necklace that Dan had bought me for my 30th birthday, and a pair of gorgeous pearl and diamond earrings that Dan's Mum bought me for the wedding.

I didn't get myself organised enough to have the 'something borrowed, something blue' etc. Bad Bride!!"





"I had thought I definitely wanted something lace, but not meringue-like or blingy. I tried on a few 'possibles' at this shop, but pretty much knew when I tried on my dress that I'd get it.   And not just because it was a bargain!!  It was an ex sample dress, was too big, and a bit tatty on the bottom, plus it had quite a lot of sparkle (bling?!) to the dress as well as the vintage-style beading all the way across the front of the dress -  but it was perfect for me!

Once I'd had it altered to fit me by a lovely local lady recommended by the shop, and the bottom tidied up with some extra lace that she'd sourced, it was even more perfect! Its such a shame you only get to wear your dress once…"



Pip and Dan had a 'reveal' shoot on the beach, prior to their actual ceremony…













Dan wore a suit from Marks and Spencers

"We asked the Best Man and Groomsmen to wear a black suit of their choice, and just provided them with a gold tie to go with it. And handsome they looked too!"






"I was undecided about whether or not to go with a veil. Initially I thought I wouldn't, as it was just too fussy and 'bridey' (!) but once I'd actually tried one on with the dress, I thought 'why not? You're only going to look 'bridey' once in your life!'. So I picked one up from Ebay (you might start to see a theme soon…) and got my dress alterations lady to add a bit of sparkle to it so it tied-in with the dress a bit more.  I didn't have it on for the beach photos, but for the ceremony itself and until my niece pulled it off my head!"











"As the venue was quite rustic, and it was going to be getting dark by the time we got married, we didn't think the barn needed too much in the way of decoration.  

Our centrepieces were goldfish bowl vases filled with pine cones (kindly collected from Norfolk woods by friends of the family on their dog-walks!) and battery operated fairy lights – they looked lovely in the low-lit barn. We also made our own menu cards and table numbers using the double-sided Tolsby frames from Ikea…"




One of the other key areas of 'decoration' was our guest favours which doubled as escort cards, directing people to their tables for dinner. Every guest had their own gold wooden initial letter with a tag on it letting them know which table to sit at. They were a really effective yet simple idea – we ordered the plain wooden letters from Ebay (yes, again!) and then spray painted them all gold. They went down well with the guests.




"Instead of a typical wedding guest book, we had a wedding tree where guests were asked to 'leaf' their fingerprint using the inkpads provided. It looks really great and fit perfectly with the autumnal style of the wedding."



"We're both really into our music and decided pretty early on that we'd love to have a live band on the night. The only tricky thing was finding one that wasn't overly cheesy but would get our friends and relatives on the dancefloor! We found the answer in The Mighty Persuaders – a really great, modern band that had a pretty wide repertoire meaning we could pick songs that spanned a variety of decades and hopefully appeal to guests of all ages.

The band were great – the dancefloor wasn't empty at all while they were playing, and they seemed like genuinely nice guys!"


"I guess the closest thing we came to a style or colourscheme was the fact that we were getting married on Bonfire weekend, so wanted a kind of relaxed, autumnal feel.  We also had a wonderful firework display – it was Bonfire Weekend, after all! It was a bit of an indulgence, but a fantastic display and really special and fun too with everyone being given sparklers to twirl!" 



Words of Wedded Wisdom…

"Everything seemed to just fall into place quite easily for our wedding – I don't know if that was because we just happened to stumble upon a great venue and great suppliers early on, but it all felt quite 'easy' in terms of planning. And I really enjoyed it – though had so much support from Dan who also really got involved. It was only a couple of weeks before the wedding when we were also moving house that it got a bit stressy… Understandable!!

We both were clear from the start about the kind of wedding we wanted – a day where we would say our vows in front of our loved ones, but then have a proper party with everyone we wanted to share that special day with. We wanted it to be relaxed and fun for us and everyone else – and kept going back to that.

We'd also thoroughly recommend writing your own vows. That was one of the best parts of the whole day – our vows were personal to us, and it made the ceremony feel so much more about Dan and I and our future together rather than just feeling like we were going through the motions and repeating a set script. Plus Dan promised me a labrador in  his vows, so I'll be holding him to that in the future!!

Oh, and one final piece of advice – book Emma Case if you can!"


♥   ♥   ♥

Brides dress – Crystal Weddings in Norwich
Brides flower hair accessory – BHS
Brides veil – Ebay
Brides shoes – Vivienne Westwood
Grooms Suit – M&S
Bridesmaids – Warehouse
Hair & Makeup Artist – Ria Lingwood
Photographer – Emma Case
Venue – The Barn
Entertainment – The Mighty Persuaders
Flowers – Tessa Papworth

♥   ♥   ♥

What a cute wedding with lots of lovely little touches – thank you Pip and congratulations to you and Dan for tieing the knot 🙂

Huge thanks, as always, to the lovely Emma for sharing these photographs – a beautiful glimpse into the happiness shared by yet another one of her lucky couples…

"What can I say about the wonderful Ms Emma Case? We feel so lucky to have found Emma and to be in the 'Emma Case Bride & Groom Club'!

We're so, so, happy with Emma's photos – they've perfectly captured our day and know that they'll always bring a smile to our faces when we look at them in years to come.

Its also so great to see Emma doing so well – her career has totally sky-rocketed over the past year, and  it couldn't have happened to a nicer person! We really do feel lucky to have been able to have met her and to have such wonderful images from our wedding day…"

Emma regularly contributes her work to Love My Dress and you can see more from Emma Case on this blog here 🙂

Have a lovely afternoon everyone 🙂

Annabel xXx


Annabel View all Annabel's articles

Founder of Love My Dress. Passionate Podcaster and Editor. Annabel lives in rural North Yorkshire with her husband and business partner Philip, their two daughters and menagerie of furry hounds. She loves photography, meditation, walking, getting in the sea, being outdoors and star gazing. She is fierce when it comes to championing talent within the wedding industry and when she's not working on Love My Dress, she supports her husband Philip in the running of the family's sustainable flower farm and floral design business, Moonwind Flowers. In 2013, she became a published author.