A Vintage Edwardian Wedding Dress + Bridesmaids with Floral Hoops

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Dear Readers, how do you fancy a trip to lovely Devon today, for a colourful autumn wedding at the most beautiful Arts and Crafts manor house?

As if that weren’t enough, add an effortlessly stylish vintage-inspired bride, amazingly coordinated, autumn-hued groom and groomsmen’s outfits, and a whole array of sweet personalisation, inspired by our couple’s shared love of travel, great food and wine, stationery, vintage, and last, but not least – bears! Mr and Mrs Richards, an event coordinator for Pickle Shack, and a warehouse manager for a wine merchant respectively, celebrated their marriage on the 6 October 2018 at the glorious Coombe Trenchard, Lewtrenchard, West Devon.

“We felt right at home from our first visit; loved its beaming character and Arts and Crafts influence. It perfectly suited our dream autumn wedding.”

Images by Clare Kinchin Photography

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The bride’s exquisite dress was a tea-length coffee lace beauty, dating from 1910, which she chose at Days of Grace Vintage, and paired with a delicate vintage tulle and diamante veil, also from Days of Grace.

“I noticed Days of Grace exhibiting at Exeter Castle’s Decidedly Different Vintage Wedding Fayre (early wedding planning, October 2017) and headed straight over to take a look at Lynda’s collection. I had full intentions of visiting her shop to try on many dresses, but this wasn’t necessary.”

“I instantly fell in love with my dress! In fact, it was the first dress (all of three that I did try on) and it fitted perfectly, and of course, the tears it brought to my mum’s eyes sold it instantly! I had envisioned a vintage lace dress, which was low-key and preferably short in length – this ticked all the boxes.”

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“Our favourite season is autumn, so agreeing a time of year to marry was easy! We love autumnal colours, so incorporated these into our flower arrangements, table décor, bridesmaids and groomsmen’s attire.”

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Mrs Richards’ textured, romantic, Belle Epoque inspired hairstyle came courtesy of Charlotte Rowley, and looked perfect paired with a vintage waxflower crown, dating from c.1910-1920, which the bride discovered at a London market (no further details provided, sadly).

Dramatic, glamorous make-up was created by Nicola Redman – I just love that deep red lipstick – and for jewellery, Mrs Richards wore a string of vintage pearls, as well as earrings, from Topsham Quay Antiques Centre.

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“My perfume was Liz Earle, Botanical Essence No.20. I was given a sample at Exeter Castle’s Decidedly Different Vintage Wedding Fayre, and loved it!”

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The bride carried a beautiful, loose and natural bouquet, again filled with autumn delights; grasses, berries and subtly turning leaves, together with incredible blooms. This wonderful work was by Ella of Folly Lane Flowers. Ella’s lovely wedding has also featured on Love My Dress, and can be enjoyed right here.

“We opted for a rich, autumnal colour palette, highlighted with champagne/ parchment tones to tie in with my dress. Yellow, plum and dark red to pick out the bridesmaid’s dresses, as well as the orange/ yellow colour of the groomsmen’s bow ties and pocket squares. The overall style brief was to be loose and romantic.”

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Mrs Richards’ choice of footwear was just right to complete this heavenly Edwardian look – Rachel Simpson’s ‘Mimosa’ peep-toe heels in rose gold.

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How utterly lovely do the bridesmaids look in their autumnal-inspired dresses from ASOS – a lovely assortment of pleats and lace, in mustard yellow, red, and burgundy. They also wore matching gold diamante bracelets (sadly no details for these), gold glitter shoes and clutch bags from Paradox London, and in their hair, individually wired stems of bright yellow achillea flowers.

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The bridesmaids also carried spectacular floral hoops of ivy, oak leaves, colourful dahlias and craspedia, and delicate waxflowers.

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Mr Richards and his groomsmen wore green tweed jackets and waistcoats from Moss Bros., with chinos from Next. The seasonal tones in these outfits are inspired, together with mustard bow ties and pocket squares from Moaning Minnie, and classic brogues from Ted Baker.

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“We met at University in 2010. We’re both lovers of the outdoors, and now live just a short drive away from Dartmoor.”

“This is where Ash planned a secret proposal, 7 years later on August Bank Holiday 2017. Coincidentally, in the middle of the moors, I heard church bells ring as I turned to see Ash down on one knee!”

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“He presented me with an early 1900’s vintage ring, and a bottle of champagne to celebrate as we watched the sunset. We began planning our wedding very soon after in October 2017, and married exactly a year later in October 2018.”

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The bridesmaids walked down the aisle to The Paper Kites’ song, Tin Lover, whilst the bride, accompanied by her father, chose Bigger Than Love by Oh Wonder.

The ceremony was held in the beautiful Great Hall of Coombe Trenchard, with the couple saying their vows to one another from the minstrel’s gallery, overlooking their loved ones, and giving one another rings, custom made by Justin Duance Contemporary Jewellery.

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“This was an opportunity to design and personalise our own rings. We had them made out of recycled metal / jewellery passed down from close family members. We opted for a sandcast finish, using sand we collected ourselves from Exmouth Beach, where we rented our first home together.”

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There were readings, too, said aloud by two close friends. Mr Richards chose the lyrics to Steven Curtis Chapman’s song, I Will Be Here, whilst Mrs Richards chose a piece called Marriage (sadly unable to find any further details about this reading).

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After the ceremony, everyone headed outside, for confetti throwing, to enjoy drinks and canapes on the terrace, and live music from Smith & Sons.

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The newly married couple took some time away for a stroll in the gardens with their photographer, Clare Kinchin, who did a brilliant job of capturing all the emotion and beauty of the day.

“Clare recommended a pre-wedding shoot, which we arranged to shoot on Houndtor, Dartmoor. Not only was this a perfect opportunity to meet with our wedding photographer, we came away with some incredible photographs!”

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“Clare was also one of Coombe Trenchard’s recommended photographers, which was really important to us, as we appreciate there are so many beautiful and unique areas of the venue to capture. We completely left it to her judgement on the day, which meant we could just relax and enjoy!”

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Mr and Mrs Richards wanted their day to have a rustic flavour, and this was beautifully realised in the styling of their reception space, in the Coach House of Coombe Trenchard.

“I love old, mismatched collectables, so we opted for vintage bone-handled cutlery and cut glass from Keeping It Vintage. We made our own linen napkins out of recycled French tea towels, and used terracotta-potted succulents from Coombe Trenchard’s garden, and candles as our table centrepieces.”

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The table plan and table names were illustrated by the couple’s close friend and artist, Emma Gadd, of Emma’s Pet Portraits, and reflected their love of bears.

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“The food was inspired by our travels of South East Asia and our honeymoon to Japan – completely bespoke and full sharing / feasting style – all by Pickle Shack. For our announcement into the Coach House, everyone raised a bamboo cup of Japanese sake (a little honeymoon influence). We also carefully paired wines with our menu, opting for Australian wines to reflect on previous travels.”

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Lovely sharing platters were followed by chilli glazed pheasant and chicken ballotine, or roasted heritage squash with Asian slaw, followed by ginger and Powderkeg beer ‘sticky’ cake to finish.

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“Neither of us have a particularly sweet tooth, so we chose this savoury alternative, which we had as our evening food alongside homemade focaccia, crackers and chutneys. These were sourced through West Country Fruit Sales.”

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Elegant and striking stationery was designed by de Winton Paper Co, inspired by a Japanese autumn (and the couple’s honeymoon destination), and printed on lovely, textured Khadi paper.

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“A close friend of ours made a two-tier chocolate and red velvet ‘sweet cake’ to serve alongside tea and coffee. Our wedding cake was a cheese stack, dressed with dried apricots, pomegranate, figs and grapes.”

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After dinner speeches were conducted on the balcony overlooking the Great Hall, before Mr and Mrs Richards enjoyed their first dance together, to The Lumineers’ Ho Hey, followed by more great live music from Smith & Sons.

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“We love live gigs, and saw The Lumineers a couple of years back. This track is a favourite of both of ours. It’s fun, upbeat, and everyone knows the words!”

“We wouldn’t change a single thing! The entire day was just perfect.”

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Words of Wedded Wisdom

“Enjoy every single moment of planning leading up to your big day. Plan everything for yourselves, and make it your own!”

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Mr and Mrs Richards, thanks a million! It’s been a delight to write about your day, and share these enchanting, autumnal images with our readers. Many thanks also go to Clare Kinchin for capturing it all. You can see more of her work on our pages, right here, and if our bride’s dreamy Edwardian dress has fired your imagination, then do take a look at more Edwardian-inspired brides and features, here.

Until next time!

Love, Laura

Credits & Thanks

Laura Callan

Laura Callan View all Laura's articles

Laura is a freelance writer and content creator who loves telling stories. She has keen eye for photography and art, and lives with her husband, cats, and huge amounts of books.