This afternoon’s gorgeous Hampshire wedding is a celebration of all things nature and showcases this beautiful area of the country at its very best.
Meet Rachel, a phlebotomist, and Ben, a gardener, who married on the 23rd of July 2016 at St John the Baptist Church, Burley, followed by a reception at The Cider Pantry, which is also where the couple first met.
“As we live in the New Forest, we wanted a ‘country casual’ wedding with a colour scheme of blue and gold. We wanted an easy and relaxed day with lovely food, friends, family and fun with a vintage element to it and we wanted to work with independent traders as much as we could.”
Images by Hayley Savage Photography
“We both love the forest, our dogs and our walks. On the day Ben proposed we were walking the dogs and decided to have a picnic. He told me to go and stand by the tree and he’d take a picture of me. I turned around and he was down on one knee with the ring in a lovely little box. We were with our dogs and surrounded by nature, just us. It was perfect.”
Rachel wore a pair of chunky gold sandals from Boden, while for accessories she kept it simple with fresh flowers in her hair and a pair of earrings from Topshop. For scent she chose Stella by Stella McCartney.
“I’m not really a girlie girl so the dress was a hard one for me. I just wanted something simple with enough room that I could be comfortable all day and be able to eat a good plate of food (I was more excited about the food to be honest).“
“Joey Burns of The Wild Fox is the most wonderful and talented florist I have ever met- she has such an eye for colours and styles. She works with nature, everything is ethically sourced and it all looked beautiful on the day. She makes an ace foliage bomb too- it was the show stopper above the dance floor.”
“Sitting in the heart of New Forest Cider is a beautiful vintage milk float, which is loved by everyone. This was our chosen ride for our wedding, and with a little love and ‘TLC’, it was done up for the day and used to transport myself and all my bridesmaids to church, which was really fun.”
“Once we were married, Ben and I went on our own little ride around Burley before we met our guests.”
“My dad walked me down the aisle, which was special for us both as I was the last daughter to be married. It was also very special for my 94 year old grandmother to see her last grandchild married; a very sentimental time for us all.”
Rachel and Ben said the traditional vows, although Ben made a mistake with his, which made everyone laugh. The couple chose two readings- 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 The Way of Love and an anonymous poem called ‘Marry Your Best Friend’.
After the vows, Rachel and Ben swapped rings, which they had made by Eve of Odette Jewellery. The story behind their rings is beyond adorable.
“Eve is so talented and we were so pleased with the rings. I love forget-me-not flowers and what they represent, so I wanted them to be incorporated in my ring. Eve came up with a few sketches and before long she had my ring laser cut with the flowers on. Ben and I also have a little saying from when we used to watch Titanic all those years ago. We say ‘You jump, I jump’ (it’s our little ‘when things are tough’ saying) so Eve inscribed this on our rings too. I have ‘You jump’ and Ben has ‘I jump’.”
The bridesmaids looked elegant in different navy blue dresses from Topshop, Warehouse and Vivien of Holloway, which they wore with their own gold shoes, while the flowers girls and page boys looked sweet in outfits from Marks and Spencer.
“The photographs were by my exceptionally talented friend Hayley of Hayley Savage Photography. Her photos are stunning, she has such a good eye for a picture and understands light and the style we wanted- I couldn’t recommend her enough. She had an equally good assistant with her called Gemma Lester and they both did the most incredible job.”
“We used Tie The Knot Films for our wedding video and Rebecca and Alex were the most lovely people; it was worth every penny.”
The beautiful naked cake was the work of a friend of the family, while Vicky Elder of The Fox in the Forest made some custom squirrels (Ben and Rachel’s favourite) as a cute and personal cake topper.
The couple hired a marquee from Castle Marquees in which to host the reception and the company also provided fairy lights for the inside and festoon lighting for outside, which looked fabulous as the light faded.
“A friend of ours, artist Heidi Steller, did the most beautiful job of making some huge initial letters and a heart out of sticks she and I collected, to go behind our top table.”
“I had seen the style of invitations I wanted and asked my very talented friend Fred King of FKing Creative to help me out. He produced the most beautiful invitations, as well as the order of service books.”
“He managed to get the invites to fit with the theme perfectly and his attention to detail is sublime.”
For entertainment Ben and Rachel booked a photobooth from Photobot which offered four scenarios/ emotions to perform with before developing the photo. this sounds great!
“We had a huge homemade frame, so the photos could either be hung up or guests could take theirs home for a lasting memory. We then had all the stills and moving giffs sent to us so we will be able to keep memories all of our guests forever.”
“Every second of our wedding day was like being in a dream. From start to finish, I had a smile on my face like the Cheshire cat. It was my favourite day to date.”
Words of Wedded Wisdom
“I worried about all the small details but they actually don’t matter. Everything comes together in the end and what you don’t do, no one actually notices. As long as your husband is there and the people you love most in the world, everything else is just material really.
Also, invest in good food. It’s one of the big things people talk about.”
So many thanks to Rachel and Ben- I love this day- so pretty and filled with endless smiles. Does a marquee wedding float your boat? Take a peek here for some beautiful inspiration.
Credits & Thanks
- Photographer - Hayley Savage Photography
- Film - Tie The Knot Films
- Venue - The Cider Pantry at New Forest Cider, Burley, Hampshire
- Marquee hire - Castle Marquees
- Bride's Dress - Willow by White Rose Bridal, purchased from Isobel's Bridal and Groom, Poole
- Shoes - Boden
- Earrings - Topshop
- Scent - Stella by Stella McCartney
- Bridesmaid dresses - Topshop, Warehouse + Vivien of Holloway
- Hair stylist - Mikaela Knops
- Make up artist - Sarah Jane Hills
- Groom's Outfit - Suit and shoes, Marks and Spencer; braces, eBay; tie, Next
- Flower girl dresses - Marks and Spencer
- Page boy outfits - Marks and Spencer
- Flowers - The Wild Fox
- Rings - Odette Jewellery
- Entertainment - Photobot
- Catering - The Swinging Grill
- Cake topper - The Fox in the Forest
- Decor - Heidi Steller
- Stationery - FKing Creative