Today we’ve got our very first ‘real wedding’ featuring our band The Examples and we are super excited!
Amanda, an HR Administrator for an online supermarket, and Jack, a horticulturalist, got married on 20th May 2017. They live together in Redbourn, St Albans, and have an 8 month old son named William. Amanda kindly answered some questions for us about their big day…
Is there a good story behind the proposal? Can you tell us about it?
After being together for 6 years, Jack proposed on Christmas Day morning 2015. I woke up quite early, excited for William’s first Christmas, and insisted we opened our presents from each other in bed. Jack gave me a small (ring-sized) box, which contained a beautiful diamond necklace. I loved it, but was quietly disappointed that it was not the engagement ring I’d been hoping for. Then before I knew it, Jack jumped out of bed and was down on one knee proposing with another small box that DID contain a sparkling diamond engagement ring. He was in just his pants and still a little half asleep too I think, but it was perfect.
What did you consider were the most important things when you started planning your wedding?
When planning a wedding, I think it’s better to take your time with it all rather than go in guns blazing trying to book and arrange everything at once. I broke down the different parts of the day and ticked them off one by one. This made the whole process not too overwhelming and it also allowed us to keep an eye on our budget.
Which venue did you pick and what made you choose it?
We had our whole wedding day (ceremony and reception) at South Farm, Royston. We were keen on an outdoor ceremony, which South Farm fulfilled with a stunning summer house complete with a pretty pond, little bridge going over a stream and colourful flowers surrounding us. The feel of the venue was very relaxing and informal, which was important to us as this was how we wanted our wedding day to be. Upon visiting the venue, in our opinion, nowhere else compared.
Can you tell us about some of the companies/suppliers you used? What made you pick them?
The venue offer a list of suppliers that they recommend, which is where I found my hair and make up lady – Izzy Foster-Wilde. Izzy has extensive experience as a professional make up artist, working in the West End and on television. She is easy-going and calming, which made the trail really fun and relaxing, as well as obviously on the big day.
For the bouquets and buttonhole flowers, we used Redbourn Arrangements. I sent them a number of pictures of the colours and types of boutiques and button holes I was looking for, and they were able to design something unique that visualised my ideas. It was convenience for us to use a local florist, as it meant I was able to pick up the flowers myself on the morning of the wedding. This gave the opportunity to make any corrections or alterations if necessary, but they were perfect, so no changes were needed.
I got my wedding dress from Satin Bow Bridal, St Albans. They have a wide range of bridal and bridesmaid dresses. Nicky and Charlotte are both really fun and personable. Nicky, the owner, designs and makes a number of the dresses herself, she also does all the alterations herself. I first went and tried on dresses when I was 12 weeks pregnant, at this point, I hadn’t even told friends and family that we were expecting! But Nicky was very accommodating and supportive with my changing body and crazy hormones!
Our wedding photographer was Chris from Chris Douglas Photography. Chris’ wife is a colleague of mine and so it was nice to go with someone who wasn’t a complete stranger. Chris has given us a beautiful array of our day. He was non-intrusive, fun and went above and beyond his duties to help us have the best day.
Was there anything you did yourself to save money?
Alongside my 9-5 job, I am a freelance illustrator, (find Amandas etsy shop here) so I handmade all the wedding stationary and decorations (save the dates, invites, signage, table centre pieces, a photo display and the table plan) myself. This not only allowed us to keep the cost down, it also meant that I could create the details of the day exactly how I wanted them to be. It was nice to be able to show friends and family a little bit of what I do in my spare time as well.
What made you choose The Examples as your wedding band? Can you tell us a bit about them?
We were really keen on having a contemporary brass band as our wedding band. We are both festival goers and love music, we go to Glastonbury Festival most years. We choose The Examples because they not only offered the brass band section we were after, but also offered the notion of a “party band.” This meant they were energetic, fun, and the dance floor was honestly never empty! They play such a variety of feel good music, Jack and I especially liked their soul and disco covers.
What was your first dance and why did you choose it?
For our first dance song, we chose “You’ve Got The Love” by Florence and The Machine. Through the guidance of Leo from The Examples, we chose a song that was not too slow and soppy (as this is not Jack and I at all!), but was still a song about love. The Examples did an amazing cover of it, we were really pleased!
What was your favourite part of the day?
It is really difficult to pick out a single part of the day as my favourite, Jack and I agree that the whole day was amazing and honestly the best day of our lives! I really enjoyed walking back up through all the guests after our vows, the most nervous part of the day was done and everyone was beaming at us, cheering and clapping. There was so much love!
What is the most important piece of advice you would give to others planning their weddings now
I will say that it is important to not let other people’s opinions steer you away from the kind of day that you really want. It’s your day and so you have whatever you want!
Thanks so much to Amanda for taking the time to answer our questions. It looks like you had an amazing day!
Venue – South Farm, Royston
Band – The Examples
Hair and Make-up – Izzy Foster-Wilde
Flowers – Redbourne Arrangements
Dress – Satin Bow Bridal
Photographer – Chris Douglas Photography