The Lovettes (Kay) ~ Venue Decisions and Weekday Weddings

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Our blogging bride, Kay, is back this morning with her next post in The Lovettes series. I know she would love your input in the comments below…

Good morning to you all and happy Friday! It’s lovely to be back blogging again, although for the last two months it has felt as though time is sprinting along without me. Since my first post back in March, I reached the milestone age of 21. I spent my birthday weekend attempting to have a civilised brunch with my girlfriends, where I managed to eat my way through at least three patisserie boxes, and in the evening I went out for dinner with my family and Sam. Living so far apart means Sam and I often go for months without seeing each other, so having him there made the day extra special.

Kay birthday

Images clockwise from top left: Kay’s cakes, chocolate cake, orange dream mimosas, Mimosa Bar, Kay!

We have been engaged for nine months now, with sixteen left to go. At this stage we should probably have some kind of idea about how we envisage the day, but as decision-making really isn’t my strong point – this has proved to be quite tricky. I get an idea on Monday, convince myself that it’s the best wedding plan ever, then change my mind by Wednesday.

Thankfully, Sam has his head screwed on slightly tighter than I do, so he’s blacklisted some of the more extreme and frankly unaffordable ideas (goodbye epic wedding circus bonanza). We know for sure that it is going to be a relatively big wedding by modern standards, with around 150 guests or more. My dad alone is one of 10 children, and at last count I had about 40 first cousins. Despite the numbers, we’ve been brought up more like siblings so I couldn’t imagine walking down the aisle without them there.

Rainbow colourful wedding ideas

Images to top to bottom: cake, balloons, parasols, bouquet, circus props

Anybody who is planning a wedding with over 150 guests will be all too familiar with the experience of spotting a beautiful venue, perfect location, reasonable price… and then noticing that the maximum capacity is 120, it’s like a recurring nightmare! Although for such a master of indecision as myself, it is probably a blessing in disguise that 90% of the options had to be immediately abandoned.

After many fruitless searches, we managed to find a stunning eighteenth century estate in Surrey that has plenty of space for all of our guests. I won’t refer to it by name just yet, as I know some of our guests will be reading this, so I wouldn’t want to spoil the fun of opening an invitation and not knowing what it will say inside!

As I am sure you are well aware, venues do not come cheap, but Sam and I made a decision that has saved us at least £7,000 – we are getting married on a Monday. It’s not a bank holiday Monday either, as those are just as expensive as weekends, it’s just a regular Monday in August. If we had infinite money it probably wouldn’t have been our first choice, but we’ve been quite surprised at how positive our friends and family have been about the suggestion. It’s definitely something to consider if you want to save the pennies. It would be great to hear from others who are considering or have experienced a weekday wedding, especially if you have any advice on making things easier for guests.

Wedding venue

Images top to bottom: Northbook Park photo by Marianne Taylor, Bride & Groom by Naomi Kenton (see full wedding here), flowers by Jay Archer Floral Design, Northbrook Park ceremony room

Trying to plan a wedding that feels like ‘us’ isn’t as easy as I thought. Sam happily spends most of his days wearing a Spiderman onesie and I can still get away with having a soft spot for Justin Beiber, so we want our wedding to feel as youthful as we do. At the same time, we both love a bit of tradition and formality, and want the day to feel like a sophisticated celebration; so now we just have to find a comfortable balance.

As I come from a Zambian background, we’ve also got cultural aspects to consider. I will be having a traditional Zambian bridal shower (known as a Kitchen Party) in the months leading up to the wedding. It’s called a Kitchen Party because everyone is supposed to bring you goodies for your new marital kitchen, but it mainly involves singing, dancing, older women passing down advice and some traditional rituals. We have been thinking about ways to subtly incorporate Zambian ‘Chitenge’ fabric into the wedding day as well, we’ve come up with DIY Chitenge napkins or pocket squares, or possibly working the fabric into the flowers. If I’m persistent, I might be able to convince Sam to wear an elaborate printed bow tie, but so far he’s not budging!

Zambian inspired

Source clockwise from top left: bow ties, dinner setting, cushions, model bottom right, model bottom left

That’s all from me for a few months now, as Sam will be taking over blogging duties on the next post to share the thoughts of a future groom. I guarantee that all words will be his own, with no sneaky editing from a certain nosy fiancé, so I relinquish all responsibility if he says anything crazy!

Lots of love,




You can keep up with our blogging brides, ‘The Lovettes‘ right here.
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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, 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.

14 thoughts on “The Lovettes (Kay) ~ Venue Decisions and Weekday Weddings

  1. *applauds* HURRAH! Sounds like good times are all around. Love the Zambian fabric idea! I’m sure we could start an online pressure campaign if he still won’t budge 🙂 Can’t wait to hear more, and HAPPY BIRTHDAY (belated) xx Lindsey Lovette

    1. Hahaha yes! I’ll attach a petition to my next post! Thanks Lindsey 🙂 Looking forward to hearing what you’ve been up to soon xxx

  2. Kay as a quilter whenever I see a piece of fabric I immediately think “that would look great in a quilt”. What about having your kitchen party revolve around having each lady making a block for a wedding quilt? You certainly could use traditional fabrics and there are shops in London, that I know of and maybe more further afield, that could organise a sewing bee party. Even if some did not know how to sew they could cut the fabric. This may be overload for your indecisive nature but something to consider. If you like the idea and need help get in touch with me. [email protected]

    1. I got a very excited message from my sister this morning after she spotted your comment! She is loving the idea of a sewing bee party, and I think it sounds great too. Definitely something for me to think about doing, a hand made quilt would be lovely for Sam and I to have when we finally find a home together as well. Will get in touch if I need to pick your brains. Thanks Mary x

  3. Happy Belated 21st Kay! Love that you celebrated with a patisserie overload and got to spend the evening with Sam! I’ve adored going to a week-day wedding, and have had so much fun taking a few days off work to celebrate mid-week weddings with friends and fam ~ it’s like a mini holiday! We’re having our reception in Whitstable on a Thursday; I think people understand just how expensive weddings can be so totally appreciate it if you decide not to get married at a weekend. A Monday wedding just equals an incredible weekend break! Love, Madeleine x x x Ps Zambian Chitenge pocket squares and napkins…Amazing! x

    1. Thanks Madeline 🙂 It’s really encouraging to hear about a mid-week wedding from a guest perspective, I’ve hardly come across anyone who seems to have been to one before. I didn’t realise you were in the same mid-week boat as me with your Whitstable reception. Thursday was actually our first choice, but would you believe every Thursday in August was booked at our venue for two years solid! I suppose having a day off work will give guests even more of a reason to look forward to the wedding haha x

  4. Happy belated birthday from one weekday bride to another 🙂 We have also booked a weekday wedding – ours is on a Friday and we made sure to tell our nearest and dearest of the plan as soon as we had the venue booked! No-one has batted an eyelid apart from my grumpy father, but then he moans about everything so nothing new there! It is a great excuse for a cheeky long weekend and we are prolonging the celebration by having the civil ceremony and a celebratory lunch on the Saturday (as the Friday ceremony is a religious one). Why not treat the weekend before your big day as an excuse to celebrate with family or friends who may have travelled for W-day? You could plan some game nights or get them involved in any wedding DIY! Whatever they do they are there for a happy occasion and bound to have fun!

    1. Hi Piriya, so pleased to hear from another mid-week bride! It’s definitely a good shout to start letting people know about the date asap, we are thinking about sending save the dates about 12 months before, hopefully that will be enough time for most. Fortunately, my dad didn’t take much convincing as he was sold on the idea as soon as we mentioned the words ‘save money’! Love the idea of making the most of the weekend before the wedding to get family and friends involved, the thought hadn’t even crossed my mind but I definitely think it could work well so thank you! Thanks for your birthday wishes as well xx

  5. Hi Kay!
    We gave favours to incorporate my husband’s Nigerian heritage – Ankara print bows which i sewed and spice blends from PEPPER & STEW
    …I also considered having Ankara waist sashes and bow ties for the flower girls and page boys but couldn’t organise it on time… Another thing I thought of but didn’t end up doing was covering tins of various sizes in print fabric and filling with flowers for the table centre pieces. Good luck! X

    1. Hi Jenny,
      How have I never come across that website before! I’ve already spotted a few recipes that I want to try and some sauces that definitely need to be in my kitchen cupboard. So glad you mentioned the centre pieces, I only just discovered how expensive flowers are and have been trying to come up with something different to go on the table. But if we have eye-catching tins then even the most basic flowers would probably look a bit more exciting. Or we could have tins and find something else to fill them with…I’m officially feeling inspired, thanks Jenny! 🙂 x

  6. Enjoy this time the planning stage is such immense fun. How about making your flowers out of the chitenge fabric or paper inspired by the fabulous colours & patterns? Surely your groom couldn’t disagree with a buttonhole in such celebratory colours!? P.S. He may say something crazy but it’s worthwhile listening ‘cos sometimes it’s good crazy 🙂

    1. It really is nice to have a reason to get creative, I definitely think I will miss the planning once it’s all over. I had considered tying bouquets with Chitenge fabric, but how amazing would it be to have some flowers that were entirely fabric! Might be something to think about for bridesmaids and flower girls especially. I think Sam could go for the buttonhole idea, maybe I’ll lure him in with that before eventually talking him into a matching bow-tie! I’m actually quite curious as to what he will end up writing about in his post, keep a look out for it in early July. Thanks Ali x

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