Radiant Orchid | A Pantone Purple Rustic Winter Wedding: Michelle & Ben
Good afternoon my loves. It’s real wedding Wednesday and I have a lovely rustic gem to share with you all today. Michelle and Ben chose a pantone of purples as their accent colour and the dusky lavender / lilac bridesmaid dresses could definitely be described as Radiant Orchid, which if you didn’t know is pantones colour of the year 2014!
Michelle and Ben had a civil ceremony in the stunning Normanton Church in Rutland. And may I say. Wow. What a venue! Very keen to steer away from a Christmassy December wedding, Michelle shows that you can still do down-to-earth rustic, even in December.
Words by Michelle.
Ben and I met at a music festival in Stamford through one of my friends who was also one of my bridesmaids. Ben got down one knee on my 30th birthday whilst we were on holiday in Mexico, made turning 30 easier!
Funnily enough my wedding dress turned out tobe the first dress I tried on, although this was pure coincidence as I had picked out 5 dresses in total and this was the first one on the rail.
I knew I wanted something lacy with very little sparkle if any, and I wanted to be fairly covered on my arms particularly during the day with it being a winter wedding but I didn’t think I would go for a tighter fitting dress as I thought I might end up with a Kate Middleton style dress.
But after trying on others which were slightly bigger in the skirt I kept finding that I compared everything with the first dress I tried on, it just seemed to be ‘the’ dress. I had the lace bolero made to go over the top which for me just finished the dress off.
I decided to go for an off the shoulder style after seeing some images on Pinterest and I couldn’t have asked for anything better, I absolutely loved the dress on the day and still do!
My wedding shoes were Rainbow Club – Coral from the 2011 collection. I was a bridesmaid for my best friend Beth and she had bought me these shoes to go with my bridesmaid dress back in August 2011. Sadly they had sat in the box since, so my wedding was a great chance for them to come out and wear with my dress.
I opted for a range of purple roses to tie in with the bridesmaids dress, white tulips and dark purple Calla lily to tie in with the dark purple of the men’s ties with some greenery including mistletoe.
The bridesmaids had a bouquet of gypsophila tied with a dark purple ribbon. The buttonholes were rustic with hessian, gyp and heather, Ben’s had the added mistletoe in his.
Originally I was hoping to find an aubergine bridesmaid dress but I think with the time of year that I was looking, predominately Spring/Summer, the colour wasn’t something you found easily without having the dresses made.
However, one day I was in Selfridges and as I went down the escalator with my Mum I saw the dresses, they were just the style I was looking for but the only problem was the colour, some may say pink but I like to refer to them as ‘dusky lavender!’ The dresses were from Spotlight at Warehouse and I immediately tried one on and took pictures to show the girls.
From here I decided that our wedding colours were going to be a pantone of purples!
Originally the girls were going to wear their own shoes but I happened to be shopping one day and I found the perfect coloured shoes in New Look which matched the bridesmaid’s dresses a treat and at a good price too with a low heel!
I purchased some vintage pearl drop earrings from Marks and Spencer to wear on my wedding day. As a surprise on the morning of the wedding Ben had got me a white gold and gold bracelet which belonged to his Mum and had attached a pendant which he had engraved with ‘Wear Me – 7th Dec 2013’
I borrowed one of my bridesmaid’s veils as my something borrowed; it was a Cathedral veil with small diamantes attached to it. Saved myself a couple hundred pounds by doing this. Originally I wanted a veil with a lace trim but I thought with a lace dress it would have been lace overkill!
We took a trip to London for the weekend in August in search of a navy three piece suit for Ben but neither of us imagined we would return home empty handed.
We were surprised at the lack of navy three piece suits in the shops although there were plenty of grey suits. In the end Ben opted to have his suit made by A Suit That Fits and arranged for his fittings at the Cambridge branch.
He was so pleased he went down this route as the suit fitted him perfectly, the purple lining was just the right colouring and he even had our wedding date stitched on to the inside pocket.
My Dad walked me down the aisle to the string quartet version of ‘Kissing You’ by Des’ree.
Our wedding photography was one area that I did not mind spending money on particularly as I love photography myself.
I researched all local wedding photographers and looked at dozens of websites. Georgi Mabee’s website just stood out for me, I hadn’t heard of Georgi before and I hadn’t known any one that had used her but I loved her website, I loved her photos and I liked the fact that she was a female photographer.
We didn’t meet any other photographer apart from Georgi and I don’t regret for one second choosing her to be our wedding photographer. She was professional in a friendly manner and made us both feel at ease when we met her for our engagement shoot. I felt completely comfortable with her during the morning of my wedding and her photos speak for themselves, I’m one very happy customer.
We didn’t want our day to be too Christmassy with it being December so we opted for a Rustic Winter Wedding. We liked ideas of wood, straw, fairy lights and ivy. Our main aim for the day was for it to be personalised to us and our guests as well as being fun.
With a love for crafting I was keen to make our wedding favours, for the girls we bought small glass jars and filled with hot chocolate and marshmallows, I spent hours cutting out the material to cover the lids and then wrapped string around and tied the place names to each one.
For the men we opted for a ‘Beer Barrow’ where we filled my Grandad’s 60 year old wheelbarrow with lots of different bottled beer and ice and then asked our male guests to help themselves.
We had fairy lights in the roof lining, teamed with fairy lights wrapped round the centre birdcages that were filled with pine cones. We had lots of wooden decorations, dried lavender, wheat etc to create that rustic theme.
The Rutland Marquee company put up an indoor marquee lining for us including the fairy lights. The wedding pavilion itself is very modern so we use a marquee company to make the venue look in line with our rustic theme and it made the area a lot cosier.
Our cake was also our dessert, we decided to do this based on being guests at other weddings and realising that no one actually seems to eat the cake as they are too full from the wedding breakfast and it gets forgotten about.
To make it more of a dessert [and not being fans of fruit cake] we opted for a chocolate fudge cake. We used Crowland Cake Creations as I had purchased a birthday cake for Ben’s 30th and the chocolate fudge cake was to die for. So why not choose someone who we knew was going to make a delicious cake.
The cake was covered in white chocolate ganache icing and we opted for a rustic theme by not having smooth outer icing teamed with chocolate initials.
I had heard of some absurd costs for wedding flowers therefore I was avoiding going to an expensive florists. Our wedding florist was recommended by a work colleague who had used her for own December wedding a few years before.
What I liked about Nicola Richards from Helpston Flower House was that she worked for herself and had a small shop attached to her house. The whole experience from start to finish was easy, no fuss and Nicola took on board everything that we had asked for even when I went back with extra ideas.
Our theme was rustic so we wanted to use lots of ivy. It’s such a pretty green foliage and creates a great look. As well as the gyp filled vases that lined the aisle, I had table-center birdcages filled with pine cones and wrapped with ivy. Nicola also decorated our wedding cake with raffia, cones and intertwined it with ivy.
During the wedding breakfast we had a table quiz which my Uncle who was also Master of Ceremonies helped facilitate. Each table had to complete questions before the end of the wedding breakfast, it was great fun and got the whole table involved particularly with people who may not know who their neighbour was.
This also tied in with a space hopper challenge which a guest from each table had to nominate themselves for although they didn’t know what they were going to have to do until we revealed before the disco started. It was so much fun and it was great to see everyone laughing and joining in with the cheering.
Our first dance song was chosen by Ben, he has a love for 80s rock so our first dance was to Peter Cetera, ‘Glory of Love’ which most people don’t know when you tell them who it is but will know when they hear it!
If you could impart any words of wisdom to a Bride to Be planning her marriage and wedding day, what would they be?
Don’t be afraid to do lots of research before settling on a theme or colour, I spent hours browsing wedding websites, photographer websites, blogs, Pinterest to get inspiration. By doing lots of research and getting ideas I was able to make a lot of things myself which saved a lot of pennies even if it meant a lot of late nights!
What was your most memorable moment of the day / evening?
This is a tough one as I loved the whole day but I think the moment where I looked in the mirror for the first time after putting my dress and veil on, I just loved my dress, my hair, my make up and I really felt like a bride. From that point I couldn’t wait to walk down the aisle and see Ben’s face which was also a very memorable moment.
Thank you so much to the lovely Michelle and Ben for sharing their Radiant Orchid, Rustic Winter Wedding with the Want That Wedding blog! Please do leave them some love in the comments section.
image credits | wedding photographer: georgi mabee | venue: normanton church | reception venue ladywood estate | brides dress: benjamin roberts via annie laurie bridal | bridesmaids shoes: new look | grooms suit: a suit that fits | florist: helpston flower house | cake: | catering: rutland gourmet | rings: muriel and lily