Check out this fabulous real wedding captured by the equally fabulous wedding photographer Marianne Chua. In addition to giving you some ideas and inspiration for your own wedding you should take a leaf out of the bride and groom’s wedding planning book – Charlie and Matt planned part of their wedding while travelling around South America. That’s one way to remove the stress from wedding planning.
HOW DID YOU PICK BRIGHTON COLLEGE AS YOUR VENUE?
We were living in London prior to moving to Brighton and narrowed the wedding venues down to four purely from online searches and reviews. We had one Saturday free to visit them all before setting off on a four-month trip to South America and Brighton College was the first on the list and the best, in our opinion. It is just not what you expect to be hiding behind the gates after driving along a normal main road in Brighton! The buildings are beautiful and the chapel is absolutely perfect. We officially booked the venue from a hammock in Costa Rica!
WHEN DID YOU GET MARRIED AND WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THE DATE?
7th February 2015. We always wanted a winter wedding, winter being Charlotte’s favourite season and it ensures EVERYONE is on the dance floor and not hanging around outside!
WHAT WAS THE WEATHER LIKE AND DID A WINTER WEDDING PRESENT ANY CHALLENGES?
The morning of the wedding was absolutely beautiful and Matthew managed a little paddle in the sea and a quick game at laser quest before getting ready. It clouded over in the afternoon but it was a dry cold crisp winters day, which is exactly what we wanted. The only issue was that the fur shrugs the bridal party were wearing had no sleeves. Brrrrrr
TELL US HOW YOU MET AND A BIT ABOUT THE PROPOSAL?
We met in a brilliant little bar in Birmingham where I was living, Matthew was visiting from Norwich at the time. I don’t remember the actual night or giving my number out until the next day when Matthew dropped me a text. We ended up texting for 7 months without any good idea of what the other looked like before meeting up. Matthew proposed a couple of years later on New Years Even at the same little bar whilst I was wearing a fake moustache and there was a very real danger of her not remembering that either.
CAN YOU SHARE A MEMORABLE MOMENT FROM THE DAY?
The chapel ceremony was a massive highlight. We were allowed modern ‘hymn’ and chose ‘Stand By Me’ by Ben E King and ‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’ by Queen, which just lightened the mood. Canon Peter Wells did a phenomenal job of the vows and continuing the fun theme and then our friend Dave Hart did a reading of Baz Luhrmanns ‘Sunscreen’. We wanted to make the ceremony a memorable part of the day as this is usually referred to as ‘the boring bit’.
WERE THERE ANY FUNNY OR INTERESTING MOMENTS THAT YOU’D LIKE TO SHARE?
Matthew hired a steel band, despite telling me we 300 times that we weren’t getting one. You can’t not be happy near a steel band. Three of the male guests thought it would be hilarious to climb up to the top balcony and moon at the entire wedding party.
And our first dance was a mash up of the very romantic ‘Higher Love’ by James Vincent McMorrow and Rudimental’s ‘Feel The Love’
WAS THERE A COLOUR THEME, OR THEME OF ANY OTHER DESCRIPTION?
Lots of fur cones, wooden logs, hessian and half a kilometre of fairy lights! Everything was handmade not to save money but because we prefer the rustic look and it was easier to design and make than try and find.
HOW DID YOU CHOOSE THE DRESS AND WHO WAS IT BY?
I visited around 10 bridal shops, although that isn’t recommended as I knew exactly what I was looking for. The other issue was that I was visiting the stores on my own as all family and friends lived up North and it’s really hard to make this decision on your own! I eventually found the Mori Lee dress in a boutique store in Uxbridge with a friend who cried as soon as she saw it. You need someone there to cry at your dress trust me. The dress was altered by Elif Kose in Rottingdean who was absolutely brilliant! She knew exactly what she was doing and I even trusted her to cut my dress.
WHICH OTHER SUPPLIERS HELPED YOU CREATE SUCH A WONDERFUL WEDDING?
Suits for the men were found in Marks & Spencers, who in the words of Matthew, a regular suit buyer, “have the best suit range I have come across on the high street and specialist suit shops”.
Bridal shoes were gold sparkly court shoes from Dune.
Catering was done by Brighton College and was a triumph.
Hair was done my Freddie, an uber cool German hair dresser.
Makeup followed Kate Middleton’s – I did my own, using Bare Minerals and Chanel make up.
Camper Van transport was from Bridal Bugs who were really helpful before and on the day.
The cake was a naked cake made by Gina, my sister in law.
Wedding band were from Mr loves Mrs in the Brighton Lanes which had the best customer service.
All decor was handmade and sourced ourselves and we hired Eddie the Goat Man DJ for the evening entertainment who was superb due to being of the same age so understood what we and our friends would want to hear.
Marianne Chua the photographer was also a brilliant recommendation and we are super pleased with her work and how she performed on the day.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO SAY ANY SPECIAL THANKS?
The chef at Brighton College for his excellent food and Marianne for the moments she captured.
IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE THAT YOU’D LIKE TO ADD?
A lot of people say it, but it honestly was the best day of our lives. There’s no other way to put it.