My Riverstation Wedding, Part 1

I’ve finally got round to typing my wedding report! So please excuse the bridal related posts that will dominate the blog for the next  few days, but hopefully you’ll enjoy what you see…  (All photographs have been taken by Maria Farrelly Photography.)

Mathew and I married on Tuesday 10th April 2012 at the Riverstation restaurant in Bristol, England. It was a glorious day and we were really lucky with the weather, considering the day before (bank holiday Monday and the day we almost booked,) had torrential rain. Obviously someone was looking down on us!

So I guess a good place to start is with the dress.  I wore Eloise by Jenny Packham. Looking for a dress was the first thing I did once we got engaged, as I thought it would take me ages to find ‘the one,’ but it just so happened that this was the very first dress I tried. I liked everything about it, the fishtail element, the detail in the bead-work, the lace up back, the straps. I could go on. I tried on a few more in the shop to be sure, but no this was it. So deal done, dress paid and we hadn’t even booked a venue or date! I should mention that I bought my dress from White Bride in Narbeth, West Wales, the service was phenomenal and their dress selection was to die for!

Finishing off the look…

As my dress was so detailed I wanted to keep my accessories simple. I opted for a cathedral length veil to go in my naturally curly hair and decided on a crystal bracelet and vintage style drop earrings, which I found from a seller at The National Bridal fayre in London. I originally wanted blue shoes for my something blue, but couldn’t find the right style so I decided to stick to ivory, which in hindsight I’m pleased with. I had my wedding gown as my something new, a pendant that Mat had bought for me many years ago as my something old, a garter as my something borrowed and had a pale blue ribbon sown on the inside of my dress as my something blue. And my mum gave me a lucky sixpence to go in my shoe!

I had fun picking the flowers, we chose peonies for myself and Mat and bright pink tulips for the bridesmaids. For our table centre-pieces we also had displays of tulips in glass jars which we bought from Ikea at the bargain price of £1.99! We wanted flowers which were in season and these seemed like great spring options, they also smelt lovely!

I decided to have my hair and make-up professionally done. I was thinking about doing it myself, but I think I underestimated how nervous I was on the day, so it was nice not to worry about it. I used Hayley from Mack Daddy’s for my hair and Kathryn from Powder and Paint for my make-up. Kathryn did an amazing job of covering up my stress-related acne which had broken out just in time for the wedding. If your a South West bride, I’d highly recommend having a trial with both these ladies, super nice and talented!

My beautiful bridesmaids…

I chose two close friends and my sister to be my bridesmaids. Originally I was going to ask them to wear different shades of the same style dress or different dresses in the same colour, but in the end I found a gorgeous navy Coast gown which they all loved and tied in with my dress. We went for navy, as blue is one of both Mat and mine favourite colours and it suited all of the girls perfectly. Looking back I’m pleased with our colour scheme as I feel it was sophisticated and allowed for brighter colours elsewhere.

Meanwhile Mathew wore a gorgeous light grey suit from Moss. He looked so handsome standing there at the end of the altar, everyone commented on how chic he looked!

The venue…

The venue was one of the toughest decisions as it made such a huge impact on everything else. We initially played with the idea of going abroad and getting hitched with just our parents, but soon realised we’d have lots of disappointed friends and family. So instead we looked at places in the UK. We almost booked a farm in Wiltshire, but decided against it when we saw the enormous costs involved against our small budget, then we found Riverstation.

It was a gorgeous glass fronted restaurant overlooking Bristol harbor. We liked its city location and effortlessly cool vibe, plus the views were awesome. The fact that it was in Bristol, (an hours drive from both our families) a city where I lived and loved as a student, meant the area already had a great deal of emotional significance to us as a couple.

The venue staff really sealed the deal though, Michele and Holly our wedding co-coordinators were really enthusiastic about our ideas and made the whole planning experience special and exciting. We felt we could trust them with our day!

Saying I do was surreal. Mat and I held hands throughout the whole ceremony, which helped keep our nerves in check!When it came to our vows I was surprised by how teary-eyed we both were, it was a lovely moment. We wanted to incorporate our family into the wedding as much as possible, so we had my brother Alex, do a reading of The Art of  Marriage and Mat’s grandad read On Your Wedding Day. We also had our mums act as witnesses. Everyone played their parts beautifully! (Including my dad who I gripped tightly onto walking down the aisle for fear of falling.)

We got married at 4pm on a Tuesday, which some may see as a risky move, but for us it paid off. We had no cancellations from guests who couldn’t make it and we had enough time to get ready in the day. It also meant a smooth transition for our guests from the day to evening, as there was no waiting around for more guests to arrive. I didn’t feel I missed out by having a ‘shorter’ wedding, if anything I’d recommend it to other couples, we felt the day was more relaxed and fun!

Soundtrack to our day…

The wedding music was a labor of love for a few months before. We initially wanted instrumental music, possibly live, but that idea fell through. In the end I walked down to Adele’s version of Bob Dylan’s Make You Feel My Love. It was perfect as it set just the right mood and tone. For signing the registry we played Oasis’ Songbird and In the Aeroplane Over the Sea by Neutral Milk Hotel. We also played Dog Days are over by our favourite band Florence and the Machine. We walked out of the ceremony to another Florence track, You’ve Got the Love. Our all time favourite song!

So that’s part one of my wedding report done, the next installment will be coming soon! XO, Hannah


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