A natural, woodland theme was the perfect fit to this intimate spring wedding.
The Perfect Venue
Nicola and James were searching for a barn style venue where they could marry under one roof and found the perfect place in Bassmead Manor Barns.
‘James is a carpenter and I love interior design and the countryside, so we couldn’t have found a better venue.’ says Nicola. ‘The beams and brickwork in the Rickety Barn were stunning and we felt that Bassmead Manor Barns had everything we could possibly need in the most incredible setting.’ With just over 60 guests for the ceremony and wedding breakfast, the couple were planning a romantic, intimate celebration.
What’s in a Theme
With their love of the great outdoors and passion for working with wood, a woodland theme was the obvious choice for this special day.
‘I chose natural, neutral colours with lighter flowers to bring the venue into spring,’ explains Nicola. ‘I have a creative background so wanted to style my own wedding more than anything else I have done.’
Nicola spent almost a year collecting and making decorations from the place settings to the centerpieces and even the wedding cake, while James also used his creative talents to make tree slice cake stands and pallets for the top table flower arrangements.
‘I wanted our friends and family to see James and I reflected in everything they could see,’ explains Nicola. ‘We wanted people to smile at everything they saw and see that all the personal touches were created to make them feel special too.’
All Dressed Up
The beautiful bride wore a dress called ‘Ivy’ by Naomi Neoh, found in a closing down sale for a designer wedding boutique.
‘I had strapless in my head but when I tried my dress on, my mum, bridesmaid and I knew it was the one,’ smiles Nicola. ‘We fell in love with the dropped lace waistline and the bias cut skirt and I felt amazing in the dress on the day.’ Nicola accessorised with a rose gold and diamond necklace from her parents and a rose gold bracelet. Struggling to find shoes, she finally found some perfect sandals from New Look.
‘They were in the sale for £6.20!’ she laughs. ‘I also made my hair comb from some of the flowers I used for the table decorations.’
As for the Groom and the Bridesmaids…
The groom and his ushers wore matching suits from Aston & Gunn at House of Fraser, along with green tweed waistcoats which they managed to hire.
‘James also wore a pocket square and a Hugo Boss watch which I bought him for Valentine’s Day,’ says Nicola.
Nicola’s two bridesmaids wore sequin and net dresses from Maya at ASOS. One of the bridesmaids wore taupe while the other wore a sage green, each with their own accessories and heels.
Country garden flowers were the order of the day with roses, ranunculus, hypericum, freesia and foliage used for the striking bridal flowers. Nicola carried a rustic bouquet with a hand-picked style, finished with hessian ribbon and pearl headed pins.
When it came to Bassmead Manor Barns, Nicola used her creative talents placing artificial flowers, foliage and berries in gold vases on top of a wooden log on each table.
‘I also used fresh roses, gypsophila and freesias to decorate small jars around the barns,’ she explains.
The Wedding Breakfast
White peach sangria and elderflower sparklers were served alongside delicious canapés at the drinks reception, with guests mingling in the bar and outside.
As guests moved in to dine, Bridge Barn looked wonderful with the floral decorations and fairy lights as well as the greenery, vases, photo frames, candles and wreaths.
Galloping Gourmet served an amazing smoked bacon Scotch egg to start, followed by grilled supreme of free range chicken and vanilla cheesecake with raspberry coulis.
‘The cheesecake was so good that my dad ate two!’ smiles Nicola. ‘And my brother couldn’t stop raving about the Scotch egg. It was all delicious.’
Let Them Eat Cake!
Having decorated cakes for years, Nicola decided to make her own wedding cake.
‘I knew I would have to do this close to the wedding date so decided to make it slightly easier for myself,’ she explains. ‘Of the four-tier cake, three were polystyrene and the forth was a fruit cake, so I could make and decorate them in advance.’ The woodland theme continued with royal icing covering the two tiers, one covered in sequins and another tier made to look like a tree trunk. A heart design, tree trunk stand and artificial wreath completed the look.
In the evening, a singer, Neil Morris, entertained with two 45-minute sets and a fantastic range of music.
‘James’ dad is a great singer and sang our first song as well as the ‘father daughter’ song afterwards,’ smiles Nicola. ‘He sang ‘Crazy Love’ by Michael Buble having practiced every day in his van on the way to work!’
A dessert table with cakes and sweets was available throughout the evening. Nicola made an array of delights from lemon cupcakes to chocolate orange cookies, tiffin truffles and a Victoria sponge cake. Delicious!
Nicola’s Top Tip
‘No matter how organised you are, everything gets hectic closer to the big day. Go with it and don’t stress. Enjoy the planning process because then it becomes so much more than just the wedding day.’
‘Sitting at the top table and looking around to see all our friends and family who we love. It gave me a moment to take it all in, how the room looked and seeing everyone enjoying themselves.’
For more real wedding inspiration from Bassmead Manor Barns, check out Nicola and Daniel’s beautiful day at this remarkable Cambridgeshire wedding venue.
Images courtesy of © Rebekah Robert Photography