Charlotte & Daniel’s Real Life Wedding

An Icy Proposal led to a Magical May Wedding!

Tell us about the proposal
We were ice skating at Cribbs Causeway with my mum and her partner around Christmas time as the festive period is our favourite time of the year. Dan asked my mum if she would take a photo of us, he then got down on one knee and proposed – still wearing his ice skates!

What was your first step in planning your wedding?
We knew we wanted to get married at St Audries Park, living locally we knew what an amazing venue it was due to it being so popular. Within a week of being engaged I requested a brochure, that then turned into booking a viewing and within 11 days of being engaged we had booked our wedding date. Being a super organised person anyway I wanted to know everything was booked as quickly as possible, I didn’t want to leave anything to the last minute. I made several spreadsheets for budgeting, the guest list, accommodation list and meal choices. I followed lots of bridal pages on social media and was constantly screenshotting ideas.

What were your wedding “must have’s”?
We wanted a modern but elegant wedding but didn’t want to get married in a church and that’s just one of the reasons why St Audries Park appealed to us, because you have the option of the Church or the Orangery. Accommodation being all in one place was also a must have due to Dan’s family coming from Manchester. We loved the fact that we could all stay in the same place at the end of the night and in such beautiful, classic accommodation.

Wedding venue: how did you search for a wedding venue?
We already knew about St Audries Park as lots of local people get married there and we can see why St Audries Park was the first and only venue which we visited.
We viewed the venue with my mum and maid of honour and as soon as we entered the grounds we were completely taken away. We couldn’t believe how amazing it was, so secluded and elegant. The whole time we were walking around it was making us as excited as we knew it was going to be the venue where we got married, it was just a case of picking the right date. Aly showed us around, she was so lovely and helpful she even helped me book Nancy, because she knew I had my heart set on her being our photographer – we then booked our wedding date for 5 months later. Aly assured me we could plan a wedding within that time frame and she was right! Everything important was booked within the first month.

Styling your wedding: how did you personalise your big day?
Our colour scheme was primarily pale pink with white and dusky pinks; the Orangery was decorated with Roses and Ranunculi’s by Orange Pip, which are my favourite flowers. The bouquets were the same colours. Our centrepieces were white birdcages with candles inside; we felt they were an elegant touch. We hired a flower wall from Flourish Flower Walls which were also white and pink and fitted in with our colour scheme.
Our cake was made by Dreams and Wishes; we met Maria at a St Audries Park Open Day. We had a 5 tier cake, it was absolutely beautiful, the flavours were chocolate fudge, salted caramel, red velvet, white chocolate & raspberry and vanilla & champagne.

Wedding photographer: how did you choose your photographer?
I knew of Nancy as she’s also local and I’ve always admired her work. She’s a very modern photographer and that’s what I wanted. I love her style, she’s just so talented!

Wedding suppliers: how did you choose your suppliers?
We didn’t actually attend any wedding fairs; we only went to St Audries Park Open Day which is where we met Dreams and Wishes so that was a massive advantage. We found our other suppliers through word of mouth and Facebook recommendations, especially the St Audries Park Family Group page.

Describe your wedding attire.
I bought the dress from Somerset Bridal, Debbie and her mum were amazing and such a massive help. I wore a Justin Alexander dress which I fell in love with as soon as I saw it. The train was so long, it had that wow factor, which I thought was perfect for a St Audries Park wedding. It wasn’t the dress I thought I would have chosen, all of my friends and family thought the same thing. We all thought I would have worn a fitted, simple dress which is what I initially tried on so I’m glad I ended up going with a different style as it was so different to what everyone was expecting.

What accessories did you wear on the day?
I absolutely loved my wedding shoes, they reminded me of the Manolo Blahnik’s which Carrie Bradshaw wore in Sex and The City, so I just had to have them. Although they absolutely crushed my feet I had to change into my Birkenstock’s not long after the ceremony. My best friend, who was one of my bridesmaids, bought me a beautiful floral beaded hair clip which I absolutely loved. I wore my Tiffany bracelet as my something old as I never take it off; everyone knows it’s my favourite bracelet.

What did your partner wear?
Daniel wore a black suit with a light grey waistcoat and a pale pink tie to match the colour theme. He looked so smart and handsome, I was very impressed.

Tell us about your Bridesmaids, Groomsmen and their outfits.
We had 1 maid of honour, 3 bridesmaids and 1 flower girl. My maid of honour and bridesmaids are all my best friends; we’ve been best friends since we were young in school. My niece was my flower girl. 2 of the bridesmaid dresses were pale pink and the other 2 were a dusky lilac as I thought it was a nice contrast. My niece wore a white dress with a pale pink sash.

Daniel had 2 best men as he couldn’t choose; they were his brother and best friend. They also wore black suits with the same colour ties. My nephew was our page boy; he wore a black suit with a pale pink waistcoat. They all looked so smart.

What was your ceremony like?
The ceremony was beautiful, I absolutely loved all of the flowers, it looked so perfect – just the way I imagined it would. 2 of my bridesmaids read a poem each that was a lovely, sentimental touch. My mum walked me down the aisle which was so important to me.

Tell us about your drinks reception and wedding breakfast.
The wedding breakfast was outstanding and couldn’t fault the food. Our main meal choices were chicken, beef and sea bass. All of the speeches were brilliant. My maid of honour started off, hers was very meaningful with a few jokes in there. Dan’s brother went second; his was hilarious, although a lot of guests couldn’t understand his northern accent. My mum’s speech made us both emotional, she struggled to start off with which made me cry. Dan’s Dad’s speech was lovely, telling everyone stories about Dan back in the day. Dan’s speech was short and sweet, saying thank you to everyone. The last speech was by one of my bridesmaids, who thought she would do something a bit different… she decided to do a rap! It was hilarious, everyone was in tears.

Did you have a band or DJ for your evening reception?
We used St Audries’s Park DJ, Geoff, for our evening reception. The music was great, Geoff had everyone getting up on the dancefloor and enjoying themselves. It was so fun.

Tell us about your first dance – what song did you chose and why?
Our first dance song was Flightless Bird by Iron & Wine. Most people had never heard of the song, we heard it from the Twilight films. We thought it was a beautiful song and we liked that it wasn’t a typical, cliché one. We did joke that we would have practiced a routine, I really wanted to do The Routine from the TV show Friends, but it would have been very difficult in my dress considering how heavy it was.

What was the most memorable moment of the day?
The most memorable moment of the day would have to be the firework display at the end of the night. It was incredible!! Dan and I didn’t have a clue about it either; my Mum had arranged it as a surprise which we thought was lovely. We both stood there in front of everyone just watching the fireworks, it was such memorable moment and a magical ending to a magical day.

Did any members of staff stand out to you in particular?
Jade was our first point of contact and she was so helpful, she was very responsive to my emails. Courtney was our planning manager and we couldn’t thank her enough for all her help throughout the whole process. She made me feel so calm and she took care of everything on the day. All of the staff were amazing; the waiters/waitresses were so polite and helpful. They all represent the St Audries Park to a high standard.

Based on your own experience, give us some top tips:
The more organised you are early on, the less stressed you will feel closer to the wedding. I loved that I had everything out of the way and I could just look forward to the wedding with nothing to worry about.

“If we could do it all again, we’d…”
Not change a thing! We would love to re-live the whole day all over again. It was perfect.

Did you go on a honeymoon or mini-moon?
The morning after the wedding we went to St Ives for a mini-moon weekend. It was so beautiful there; it was so nice to relax after a crazy few days with the build up to the wedding. Our honeymoon was a couple weeks later in Orlando, Florida. That was a lot more eventful as we visited all of the parks every day, but could still soak up the sun as it was 36 degrees. The evenings were a lot more chilled out and we went to beautiful restaurants each night, it was paradise. We didn’t want to come home!

Purchase & Hire – Tell us who your suppliers were:

Wedding Attire – Somerset Bridal, Minehead

Wedding Cake – Dreams & Wishes

Photographer – Nancy Calypso Photography

Flowers – Orange Pip

Flower Wall – Flourish Photobooths

Hair & Make Up – Leigh Hair & Beauty

Photo Booth – The Somerset Photo Booth Company

If you have any questions relating to having your wedding at St Audries Park, please don't hesitate to call Sally via the contact details below:

Sally

T: 01984 633 633
E: info@audries-park.co.uk