Yay Jane Eyre quote! BOOM! Maybe that's lame of me, but whatever. Jane Eyre is my desert island book, and I love that bit. Jane's a badass. And also, Nic and I got married on Friday and it was truly, truly excellent. Like, honestly the best day we've ever had. The best weekend, in fact, because the celebrations extended into the weekend, and into today, in fact.
The festivities started on Thursday, when my parents and my brother-in-law arrived. Thankfully, Nic and I had everything ready so there wasn't really any last-minute running around. We needed to go to the tip, and to buy some flowers, but the rest of the day was just chilling out and having fun. It was like Christmas Eve, but not as cold!
I won't give you a blow-by-blow account of Friday but we did have an amazing day. The ceremony was brief and intimate. We only had seven guests to that part of the day, and it was perfect. I surprised myself - and my parents, I think - by getting a bit tearful during the ceremony. Immediately after the deed was done, we were met outside by our friend Fiona Murray, who had very kindly offered to take a few photos. I'm underplaying this a bit - as well as being a good friend and a lovely person, Fiona is an extraordinarily talented professional photographer. It was unbelievably kind of her to volunteer her services, and I think you'll agree that her photos are stunning:
Yes, we found another blue door to pose in front of! In my defence, this was Fiona's idea.
Nic and I had no plans for professional photographs - mainly because it seemed like it would be kind of a faff (and it has been at other weddings I've been a member of) so I really can't thank Fiona enough for giving us such a beautiful gift. It was a lot of fun taking the photos - she's great fun to be around anyway and I think she captured us really well!
Our wedding party - don't we all scrub up well?
After Fiona had finished taking the photos, she took my brother-in-law to the station (he had to get on the train to Folkestone as he was going on holiday to France that night) and we all went for a celebratory drink... in Wetherspoon's. I know, classy! We were all very over-dressed for Wetherspoon's on a Friday morning, but it seemed like it was worth it.
After lunch, the wedding party decamped to Kayal for Business Lunch. I'm not lying when I say that Business Lunch was one of the major attractions to getting married on a weekday! Also, you know, I'd just closed a pretty major deal so it felt appropriate. It was pretty cool because not only was the food delicious, but it gave my parents a proper chance to get to know the rest of the wedding party - our dear friends JP and Hannah (who were also our witnesses) and Viv.
After lunch, we went to our reception venue. We wanted the wedding reception to be low-key, relaxed and fun so we had booked the function room at The Royal Pug. It's a beautiful room with its own GIN BAR. Yes, you read that correctly! We had invited around 60 guests for the evening party, and quite a few of them brought food for the buffet. Our good friend Rick provided the music - a few weeks earlier, we had gone round to his house to compile a playlist, with the thought that an ipod of music would be pretty cool. Rick went one better and actually DJed the evening, which made such a difference. The music was pretty much solidly 90s pop and indie (I'm a child of the 90s after all) and it was brilliant.
The buffet, mid-party
Quite a few of our friends are musicians. We'd deliberately not asked them to play at the wedding - not because we didn't want them to, but because we didn't want them to have to work on the evening. Despite this, our friend Tom took us to one side and asked us did we want a band because they'd all brought their equipment, and, voila, we had a live band!
The surprise band. Yes, we had an accordion at our wedding. Isn't that awesome?!
The band played for around an hour and included a guest set from Nic's friend Ian on vocals - this was especially cool, because Ian hadn't sung for about four years. After the band packed away, Rick got the DJ set up and running again and the dancefloor really kicked off...
Dancefloor action shot
The brilliant thing about the wedding reception being so small is that Nic and I got to spend time with all of our guests and to dance our asses off on the dancefloor. Some of my favourite memories from the night are from the dancefloor - like the fabulous moment when my old housemate Carter and I had a heartfelt singalong to Mr Jones by Counting Crows, or when Lucy and I pogoed to Boys Don't Cry by The Cure. Then there were those songs that brought the whole room together - most notably Business Time by Flight of The Conchords, Ignition Remix by R. Kelly and - best of all - when everyone busted seriously interpretive moves to Wuthering Heights. Amazing. Nic and I didn't have a first dance, but we did have the last dance of the night to At The Indie Disco by The Divine Comedy. It was perfect.
You make my heart beat the same way / as at the start of Blue Monday / always the last song that they play / at the Indie Disco
The whole day was everything we had wanted it to be and even more. Everything went so smoothly and we had so much fun. It was wonderful to be surrounded by so much love. Our friends are amazing. Really, really amazing. Everything was so stress-free, and in no small part because our friends contributed to the day in such special ways - giving of their time and talent as well as being there to celebrate with us. In addition to the beautiful photographs and amazing music, we had friends providing us with delicious food! We had two wedding cakes baked by lovely friends - an incredible lemon and blueberry drizzle cake baked (and decorated) by Denise and a delicious raspberry Victoria sponge baked by Sarah. My parents were astounded by the generosity and all-round wonderfulness of our friends, and so were we.
My dad and Fiona
Another dancefloor action shot. These are our people! I can't remember what we were dancing to here but it was clearly something awesome.
By the time we finished the night at closing time, Nic and I were exhausted, emotional and extremely happy. We'd partied our heads off - I actually limped home because I'd danced so much - and it was the best start to married life I could have imagined. I feel incredibly lucky to have such a wonderful family, amazing friends and of course, such a darling and handsome husband.
And now the bit when I talk about what we wore! Isn't Nic's suit beautiful? He got the suit from Debenham's, the shirt from TK Maxx and the waistcoat came from a local tailor via a charity shop. The pocket watch had been given to him by his grandpa and I made him his pocket square (I'm sure Mark Francis would disapprove!)
My dress is a By Hand London Flora dress with a straight circle skirt rather than the pleated one that is part of the pattern. I knew I'd want to wear a petticoat with the dress so this seemed like the best thing to do. I used Carline rose print Liberty tana lawn, which I had bought from Fabrics Galore at the Knitting and Stitching show earlier this year. You might be surprised by my choice - I must confess that I was, because I've never been a big fan of Liberty prints. However, as soon as I saw this I fell in love and I must admit that it was a joy to sew. I made my bouquet myself from gypsophila. It's pretty and simple, and it's also the flower that both of my sisters chose for their wedding bouquets. The pink ribbon around the bouquet came from the boke bucket that the Spoolettes gave me at my surprise hen party, and my headpiece was a gift from Sarah from way back when we did our first swap a few years ago. And my shoes are Karl Lagerfeld for Melissa, and... just LOOKIT. They're fabulous:
I love these shoes. They're business up front and party in the back.
Fiona found me another fancy door to stand in front of!
I really, really love my dress. I wanted to make something that felt like me, and that I'd wear again. I certainly will wear this again - I was really sad to take it off before I went to bed! It was perfect for the day we had and I felt amazing in it. In terms of sewing - yeah, it's probably not perfect, but I loved making and I loved wearing it. Nic loved it too, and really, that's the main thing.
So, yeah. That was our wedding. We loved every moment of it and had a truly beautiful day. I couldn't be happier with my new husband. Life is good! We had an amazing weekend too - we went to Folkestone the following day to visit Nic's parents and grandparents - but I'll have to tell you about that another day. For now, all that's left is for me to thank everyone who has commented or tweeted or emailed to congratulate us on our wedding - it's been beautiful. Thank you! We'll be off to Paris on our honeymoon soon so I might not be around for a bit, but I'll be back before long with many more dresses and shoes, don't worry!
Anyway. I need to go and watch a cop show and regain some normality around here. Night all!