June 2013 | Ideal Bride Magazine
Alex Holloway (51) and Dan Rye (42) from Winchester met in 2000 when they both worked for the same company. In 2003 the couple set up their own vinyl graphics printing company, HollGraphics Ltd, which came in very useful as they were able to design and print many of the details for their wedding.
Alex says "we were able to print the stickers for the jam jar favours and the table plan ourselves. I designed the table plan to look like an old cupboard on the wall with the seating plan appearing to be pinned to it with gingham ribbons.
We wanted the wedding to feel like a traditional English Summer Garden Party, so lots of flowers, gingham ribbon and bunting was the order of the day! I put the word out that I love to see ladies in hats, many of the guests rose to the occasion beautifully.
Above all, the day was very family-orientated. My daughter, Emma (22) and Dan's daughter, Georgia (17) were my beautiful bridesmaids and I was given away by my son, George (20), with Dan's son, Will (19) taking on the role of joint Best Man with Dan's long-time best friend, Tim.
The ceremony and reception were at The Clock Barn, Tufton Warren, Whitchurch, Hampshire. We were so lucky that it was the first warm, sunny day we'd had all summer so after the ceremony, the guests enjoyed Pimms, homemade lemonade and canapes in the pretty garden whilst Andres Garcia played the Spanish guitar in the background.
Once the bridesmaids' dresses had been chosen, I made the bunting in various fabrics to complement the colour scheme of dusky pink, ivory and grey. The guests wedding favours doubled up as place names on the tables and were little jam-jars filled with heart-shaped sweets (labeled Bonbons Amour). I found a lovely Liberty lawn fabric for the lids, which I scanned to use as a background for the table plan and the jar labels.
The Blooming Workshop supplied all the beautiful floral arrangements, bouquets and buttonholes, which featured lots of Sweet Avalanche and Memory Lane roses to echo the fabric of the bridesmaids dresses.
My biggest concern was that the dress had to be appropriate for my age and, after trying on lots of dresses, I saw the ‘Abaco' on the Pronovias website. I couldn't find a shop in Hampshire that stocked it, so went up the flagship store in London to try it on and The Ivory Boutique in Winchester were able to order it in for me.
It is off-white chiffon, with a flattering off-the-shoulder neckline. It fitted me like a glove down to about mid-thigh level then flared out to a train, which could be buttoned up for dancing later. Unlike most of the dresses I had tried on, I loved the fact that this one wasn't strapless so I didn't feel I needed to wear a wrap to cover the tops of my arms. The Ivory Boutique also found me the perfect pearl headpiece from Nieve Couture.
The bridesmaids' dresses, from Phase Eight, were slightly altered so that the skirts were shorter and fuller. I found pink satin covered alice-bands in Accessorize and matching shoes from Debut in Debenhams. For the evening they both had a grey satin wrist-bag from Debut featuring an applique rose effect that matched their dresses perfectly and gave them somewhere to keep a lipstick and the all-important mobile phone!
Perks Catering from Andover are the approved supplier for the Clock Barn and their food was delicious. We had a canape reception after the ceremony, with a barbeque for the wedding breakfast. Just as the guests were starting to feel a bit peckish again at about 9pm they were offered fish and chips in paper cones, which were a big hit.
Guests could also help themselves to a selection of cheese and jam (this has become a traditional meal for Dan and the guys who make the annual pilgrimage to the Le Mans 24 hour race every June). Strangely enough, the combination is quite tasty!
Parkers Cakes in Andover made the cake for us, which was chocolate, covered in an ivory chocolate grenache and decorated with sugarcraft roses in soft pink. It looked beautiful and tasted amazing.
The first dance, which wasn't choreographed, was to Ray Lamontagne: ‘You are the best thing'. Music was a very important element of the wedding for us and we spent hours deciding on what we would have for each part of the day. My entrance was to Adele's ‘One and Only' and during the signing of the register, we had ‘Lucky' by Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat. The lyrics of this go ‘I'm lucky I'm in love with my best friend'; which says it all! We exited to ‘Pencil full of lead' by Paolo Nuttini, to get people in a dancing mood early in the proceedings!
We spent a few days at my stepfather's house in Spain, and my romantic new husband organised a surprise mini-break in the middle of the holiday at the Las Arenas Hotel in Valencia to celebrate our first week of married life."
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All images courtesy of Kate Jackson
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