A Chic Green & Red Barn Wedding

A Chic Green & Red Barn Wedding


WWW readers Kate and Ronan married in Hereford Cathedral and headed to Lyde Arundel, Herefordshire for their reception. They wanted their day to be local filled with those they care about, beef, apple brandy and a barn.

One of my very favourite things about their wedding has to be the flowers. Big bold hydrangea bouquets in contrasting green and apple tones. With the prettiest little flower girls in floral dresses carrying pomanders.

Kate wore a chic and classic dress by Caroline Castigliano while Ronan found his dashing blue suit in Jack Bunneys. They looked gorgeous.

Thanks so much to the wonderful Gemma Williams for sharing her photographs with us today.


The Proposal… 20 May 2011 – One Friday night at home, after a home cooked meal whilst playing the cheesy wedding song “Let’s Get Married” by Jagged Edge (meet me at the altar in your white dress we aint getting no younger so we might as well do this…….) and a cheesecake with “marry me” in chocolate buttons after over 8 years it was worth the wait!

The Vision for the Day… It had to be in my home town (so my 93 yr old Nan could come) with plenty of reminders of growing up in Herefordshire (beef, apple brandy & barns) and it had to be one big party with as many of our friends and family as we could accommodate.

The Planning Process… as my sister was still living in Australia at the time we wanted to make sure she’d be back so that gave us about 16months to plan – this involved reading lots of wedding blogs, buying (unnecessary amounts of) wedding magazines and checking out a few fairs.  I was the planner and Ronan had input at key stages (no I don’t like any of the invites you are showing me, can I make the playlist..).  I filled up a lovely little planner but actually just did that for a fun keepsake.

The Venue… The Lady Chapel in Hereford Cathedral, it has a stunningly beautiful stain glass window (see pics).  The reception was at Lyde Arundel – a barn with beautiful gardens (and run by ex pupils of my old school – they were the first couple to get married from their in the 70’s and we thought it a good omen).

The Dress + Accessories… The image I had in my mind was a 1950’s/60’s style dress, unfussy but with strong lines, which had to be non-white (I’m too fair skinned to wear white very well).  The other accessories would be quite minimal but include pearls.

Finding the Dress… I was really nervous  when I first went dress shopping with my Mum.  The first shop  we went to happened to have a cancellation for that afternoon.  The dress I settled on was by the second one I tried on (and LOVED) called Lola by Caroline Castigliano, ivory high necked, train, veil.   I didn’t buy it then though, as I thought I couldn’t possibly get the second one I tried  on (even though it made my Mum cry…), so I had to go and try loads on with the bridesmaids and make the most of the dress trying on experience!  I eventually bought it in the January sale – every little helps!

Groom’s Attire… a lovely blue 3 piece suit hired from Jack Bunneys – he looked really handsome.

The Readings + Music… Mariel (Ronan’s sister) read from Romans Ch12 9-12 and our friend Liz read an extract by Victor Hugo from Les Miserables.  I walked down the aisle to Sinfonia from Solomon by Handel, (also known as The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba),  The Swan by Camille Saint –Saens  played whilst we signed the register and we walked out together to Pomp and Circumstance March No 4 by Elgar (another Herefordshire connection, and was rearranged by George Robert Sinclair an organist at Hereford Cathedral in the early 1900’s). At the venue we ha d a good old fashioned disco (including a wedding love train) for which we selected a fairly extensive playlist ……

Beautiful Bridesmaids… My sister Laura was our maid of honour, and the other gorgeous girls were Emma (my childhood friend), Naomi (school  & Girl Guide friend) & Jacqui (my best cocktail in crime drinker).  They wore gorgeous Dessy dresses which I originally wanted to be in petrol blue but as we couldn’t find the right shade we went for a reddish pink – I thought they all looked the bees knees.  We had few little flower girls too – Henrietta (my goddaughter), Edith, (Naomi’s two girls), Katie (my cousin’s little girl) & Adelaide (our niece) – Denise of “Little Miss Fancy Frocks” made their lovely rose print dresses.

The Flowers… Debbie at The Hibiscus Rooms and her team did a fabulous job – I knew I’d pick her as I’d always loved her shop.  For the reception I wanted different designs on each table and they were really stunning and made lovely gifts to the venue, friends and family at the end of the day.  When the sun shone it really bought out the colours.

The Cake… My Mum made it and it was an amazing three tier fruit cake – 100% delicious– it had to be a fat cake and I’d seen a snap in a wedding mag of a tied ribbon design and thought that would look lovely – luckily Lydia our ace head chef at the venue managed to recreate the ribbon look from the picture I had – which was a good thing as I’m hopeless at anything creative!

Your Photographer… the amazing Gemma Williams – we were at school together and when I found out Gemma was a wedding photographer and she lived in Hereford  we arranged to meet up.  The thing about Gemma is she is massively enthusiastic about your wedding and wonderful at directing the photos without being pushy.  The engagement shoot was invaluable as it really helped us get to know Gemma, appreciate her calming manner and get used to being snapped- the results speak for themselves and I’d thoroughly recommend her!

The Details + Decor… Instead of favours we went for a sweet bar  (Jacqui made the signs) –I don’t think either Ronan or I had one sweet –it was a hit.  We strung multicoloured Chinese lanterns and fairy lights from the beams in the barn – to break up the height  & Adam Fisher Art designed our invites and table plan in which we included little pieces of Herefordshire  (apple brandy, locally sourced ingredients etc).

The Honeymoon… We went to Bali & Lombok with one night in Kuala Lumpar it was perfect.

Memorable Moments…  the vows, me arriving late (sorry Ronan) on a Route Master bus with my Dad, the bridesmaids and the flowergirls, Ronan calling me the wrong name in the speeches, Ronan’s speech generally, apple brandy,  and the wedding love train.

Advice for Other Couples… enjoy it , get a budget & spreadsheet to keep you on track and if you have time have a break from planning, don’t tell everyone everything – it’s nice to keep a few things a surprise ps use local suppliers and recommendations!

Credit Where Credit is Due…

Photographer –Gemma Williams –  http://www.gemmawilliamsphotography.co.uk

Venue – Lyde Arundel – http://lydearundel.com/

Routemaster Bus – http://www.londonbus4hire.com/

Wedding Dress – Caroline Castigilano – http://www.carolinecastigliano.co.uk/

Mens’ suits – Jack Bunneys – http://www.jackbunneys.co.uk/

Bridesmaid dresses – Bridalwear by design – http://www.bridalwearandballgowns.co.uk/

Flower girls dresses – Little Miss Fancy Frocks (recommended as a supplier to a friend’s shop )  - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Little-Miss-Fancy-Frocks/203910739645316

Flowers – The Hibiscus Rooms – http://www.thehibiscusroom.co.uk/

Invitations – Adam Fisher – http://www.adamfisherdesign.co.uk/Index.aspx

Hair – Iggy at the Hair Junction – http://www.hairjunction.co.uk/

Make-up – Julia Hannes – mother of the bride’s friend

Music – Hereford Cathedral organist & DJ Guy Davies



Oh so lovely. Thanks so much to Kate and Ronan for sharing their beautiful wedding with us today XOXO Lou

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