19 Jun Rustic Outdoor Wedding
Rustic Outdoor Wedding // Esther & Toby
When you plan a rustic outdoor wedding, the last thing you want is torrential rain. It would put most brides on edge and make them worry in the run up to their wedding. Esther is not most brides. She bought lots of rainbow umbrellas and got on with it. Nor did she stop smiling and laughing all day (note: she gets this from her mum, Jo, who is a total joy). Esther & Toby’s wedding celebrations took place on a family farm in deepest Hampshire. When I arrived in the morning, it was all hands on deck; ushers were chopping wood, bridesmaids were hanging lanterns, the caterers were dressing the marquee, the bar staff were putting out champagne glasses, the guests were finding their tents, the storm clouds were gathering….. Esther was getting ready in the farm house, surrounded by her girl gang, and the room was awash with silver outfits and white balloons. The scene was set with rainbow bunting, flowergirls in white tutus and silver puffa jackets, and guests in their wedding finery and wellies. There was a short, heavy downpour just before the ceremony, but once it passed it was on with the show. Held in a tiny clearing in the woods, it was a beautiful and personal ceremony, officiated by one of their friends. Not long after a group singalong to Que Sera, Sera, the rain came again. The umbrellas went up, the rings went on, and the confetti was thrown.
After a drinks reception partly outside (hello sunshine) and partly in the barn (thank you rain) , it was time for dinner in the marquee, a fantastic feast put on by Jones and Sons. Inbetween courses there was magic and speeches. Evening entertainment was provided by the fantastic Brass Funkeys, a New Orleans style brass band who have the most insane amount of energy and talent. If you’re looking for the band to end all bands, I can’t recommend them highly enough. They led a procession outside into the woods, and amongst the sparklers and the glitter-painted faces, Esther & Toby had their first dance. By now Esther’s beautiful dress had a very on trend ombré effect; the rain and mud that the hem had soaked up. Did she care? Look at her face. She did not. The Wedding Smashers took over where the band left off and the party was so much fun, I didn’t want to leave. Obviously, all good things must come to an end at some point, and I trekked across dark fields, found my car and drove on to Essex for the following day’s wedding. My shoes had seen better days, and as I dried them with the hotel hairdryer, I thought of Esther’s dress and wondered what state it would be in (she told me later that it smelt like a swamp). The stuff that wedding memories are made of.