Summer lovin'

This August is full to the brim with wonderful weddings at the barns! We have loved seeing how each couple are getting creative and putting their own style on things with their table plans, stationery, games, beam decor and flowers - its different every day and we love it!

We have also been looking back at some gorgeous weddings over the past few years which have also taken place in August - looking back makes us smile just as much as it did on the day!

As we near the end of another week, we are excited to host more wonderful celebrations under our timber beams and can’t wait to meet lots of new faces throughout the rest of the month.

We’d also like to wish all of the couples featured below a very happy anniversary for this month - time to pop some bubbly we think ;) Now it’s time for some summer inspo….

 

ROB + ROCHELLE 11.08.19

Tom Halliday Photography

 

LISA + NEIL 11.08.16

Lottie Ettling Photography

 

AIMEE + CHRIS 10.08.17

Fay Andrea Weddings

 

MARK + SOPHIE 08.08.15

Lina & Tom

 

AMY + MARK 19.08.16

Jessica Reeve Photography

 

LIZZIE + GEOFF 03.08.17

Stuart Deadman Photography

 

CHARLOTTE + SIMON 04.08.18

Rebecca Louise Photography

 

LAURA + DIRK 19.08.17

Greg Coltman Photography

 

KIM + GAVIN 16.08.18

Weddings by Adrian Dewey

 

CATHERINE + CHARLIE 24.08.17

Daniel Ackerley Photography

Real Weddings at The Granary Barns

MATTHEW + NICOLE

19.04.19

Matthew and Nicole began planning their wedding day when they were living in different countries (Nicole in America and Matthew here in the UK)… not an easy feat! But with the help of our team and Hall & Co., they were able to create the day of their dreams!

Take a look at a selection of images by the talented Olivia & Dan, captured on their special day back in April. If you’re looking for some serious style inspiration coupled with wonderful memories, this is the blog for you…..


PICKING THE DRESS

I really thought I wanted a Hermoine de Paula, super embroidered, ‘English Rose’ with an edge type of dress. I tried on probably 20 dresses in that style and something just wasn’t working! Finally, I had one of my bridesmaids suggest I try something on the simpler side and that was it. Waterworks. Loved it immensely, and that ended up being my dress!

I chose my dress because it made me feel like me! I’m not a flashy dresser, but I do like really polished numbers, like a jumpsuit, blazer, etc. And I felt like my dress had a touch of that. And what girl doesn’t dream about having a Vera Wang dress!

 

SUITED & BOOTED

Matt got his suit from an amazing place called Bespoken For where they make custom made to measure suits. The company is run by an ex banker. He used to buy suits for work from Savile Row, but got tired of paying a lot of money. So they founded their company, which uses the same materials that they use on Savile Row, but they are manufactured overseas to keep costs down.

Matt picked all the materials and finishes himself, down to the thread colour. He even had the wedding date embroidered on the inside!  So it was super special. Matt wore navy, and so did his groomsmen. The best men wore grey, so that they would stand out.

Matt chose everything! And it was a surprise for me. I didn’t see it until the day.


THE VENUE & DECORATION

I was living in the states when we started planning our wedding, and I spent HOURS upon HOURS looking at venues online. We were open to anything and everything. From a city wedding, to a manor, to a hotel, to a warehouse. It was lots to narrow down. But believe it or not, Granary was the first place we viewed. And after meeting the GG’s, we were sold! The team put us completely at ease. We viewed one more venue on the same day, and we just had a feeling that nothing would beat Granary. From the style of the barn (rustic but modern), to the GG’s, to the ease of access for my travelling family, to the proximity to nearby hotels. We were in love.

We wanted to do something that felt like us… traditional, but a little bit edgy and unique. We didn’t really have a theme! It was more like.. ‘Oh that would be cool! Let’s do that!” Hall and Co were AMAZING at taking alllllll our ideas and organising them and bringing them to life! From the pampas, to the AMAZING flower pillars/turn photo backdrop! Such creativity and talent!

We were BEYOND PLEASED with the results. ABSOLUTELY BLOWN AWAY. It literally brought tears to our eyes. We could not have imagined anything more perfect.

 

FLOWERS

Hall and Co did all of our flowers and foliage! We started planning a little late in the game.. and it was in the midst of me moving from the states to the UK! So Matt and I wanted one place to help us in our frantic state.

When it came to the floral styling, what didn’t we choose??? During our first meeting with Hall and Co, we wanted really really classic white and greens. (Right after the royal wedding, I think that was having an effect on me!! Ha!) But even then, we knew we wanted something statement making!

After we thought about it more, we started chatting about some other fun ideas that we liked and saw on Pinterest. And we arrived at… PAMPAS! From there, the traditional vision transformed a bit with the help of Jo and Kerry, and we arrived with EXACTLY what we wanted! Still lots of white and greens, but with these beautiful blushes and nudes incorporated that I think complimented the barns perfectly! You’ll have to ask Jo the flower names… all I can remember was pampas and the David Austin roses!


BRIDE SQUAD

I had 11 bridesmaids. My dad was in the army, so I moved so many times as a kid and young adult. So I had all of my best girl friends from each place I’ve lived by my side! We’ve all managed to keep in touch!

The ladies got to choose their own bridesmaids dresses. I actually picked a paint swatch of creams and told them to go wild! I LOVED the outcome!

When I think back to my favourite moments with my 'bride tribe’, if I’m honest, it was just being together for the whole week prior to the wedding! It was honestly a once in a lifetime moment to have so many ladies from all over the world together in one place! But a memory that stands out is just having that first glass of bubbles in the morning, and us all being in one large room chatting and getting ready together. And taking an impromptu group picture on the bed, where we were all feeling like Victoria Secret angels I think!

THE VOWS

I felt SO emotional, and so excited just before the ceremony. Not really nervous. Just so eager to see one another, and with SUCH an adrenaline rush!

It felt indescribable to have all of our friends and family at our wedding day. It was one of the most important thing about the day for us. We are honestly so blessed with the most amazing family and friends. It gives us goosebumps just thinking about it. You could FEEL the love in the room!

The ceremony itself flew by. We remember blips, but the emotions were just running so high!

 

CATERING

Hall and Co catered for our wedding, the best ever.

They provided the most gorgeous canapes, regular and vegan. An out of this world parma and cheese starter, THE BEST shin of beef we’ve ever had, and a salt caramel Eton mess! Oh, and can’t forget the most AMAZING Puerto Rican inspired tacos made especially for my Puerto Rican family.

 

PARTY TIME!

We were SO pleased with how the Granary looked for the wedding reception. I think the bits that stand out were obviously the flowers, along with the lights and candles. Oh and the order of service and seating chart! STUNNING!!!

We knew our evening entertainment had to be a band all the way! We chose the Teenage Kicks. They knew our first dance song, and honestly we just love a bit of rock/indie!

Our first dance was ‘I Love You Baby’ by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons. We saw Jersey Boys together when we first started dating, and it’s been on rotation ever since. And we just love the part when it all kicks off with the brass band!

Would we like to do it all over again? YES YES YES. And it was a unanimous YES from our guests too. Honestly trying to find an excuse to get together like that all over again! The music, the drinks, the energy! Amazing.

 

WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY

Olivia and Dan. We just found them by googling! We loved that they were a husband and wife duo, and they were just so amazingly sweet from the first conversation we had with them! We love their moody, cinematic style that was really candid and natural. We wanted someone who could capture the ‘real’ moments! And they so did!

We received our photos 8 weeks after the wedding, which was expected. First thoughts? SO MUCH JOY AND EMOTION. It was like reliving the most perfect day all over again! We were actually BLOWN AWAY by how perfectly they captured everything!!

My favourites photos have to be all of the ceremony shots. And the reactions during the speeches! And the dancing photos! (Nearly all, so hard to choose!) The great thing was that they were so unobtrusive. We barely noticed they were there, yet they got the MOST amazing shots!

We’ve printed a few images since the wedding. But we plan to make a book as a gift to our parents.

TAKE MY ADVICE...

 After having some time to step back and think about our day what I remember the most is the absolute tidal wave of love and support we felt from our family and friends. I don’t think we’ve ever felt as loved and blessed. And honestly, we remember Parris and Kerry (from Hall & Co) being absolute ROCK STARS! They treated our day like it was theirs. They made us feel so special and looked after. And no request was too big or small. They were completely composed, and handled everything with ease! That makes a HUGE difference, because we felt like we could be at ease and just enjoy the day!!

Thinking if there things we chose to have on the day that I wouldn’t have now, I cant say I would’ve changed a thing. I think we did just the right amount. We didn’t get too caught up in favours, table games, etc. Which I’m so glad we didn’t! Because we had  the best time and didn’t really miss it! We did do favours though, but just kept it simple. Mini eggs and a shot of café patron! Because why not. ;)

If I could give a top tip for future brides/grooms it would be to forget convention, and do what you want! It’s your special day, and it should be fun! At the end of the day, everything will work out. So just enjoy every moment, because it will be over before you know it! 

Could we be the venue for you?

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Hello! We hope you’ve enjoyed the glorious weather this weekend!

We wanted to check in with you this Sunday afternoon to let you know we have a couple of days coming up in July when we will be holding a number a personal show rounds :) Hurray!!! So the big question is…are you looking for your perfect wedding venue? If the answers yes, then why not come and say hello?!

Image - Ania Ames Photography

Image - Ania Ames Photography

On Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th July our GG Parris will be holding exclusive viewings of the barns where you will be able to take a look around our venue and ask any questions you like!

Appointments are limited and are first come, first served so be quick to guarantee your space.

Get in touch on 01638 731230 or email parris@thegranaryestates.co.uk to book your appointment.

Image - Olivia & Dan Photography

Image - Olivia & Dan Photography

We look forward to meeting you!

The GG’s :)




CDC Weddings: British Cuisine


Driftwood Goats’ Cheese, Beetroot Marmalade, Walnuts, Watercress

Driftwood Goats Cheese

1 goats cheese log

Cut log into 4 equal pieces. Use a blow torch to caramelise the top of the goats cheese straight onto the plate.  

 

Beetroot Marmalade

100g grated raw beetroot

40ml water

40g caster sugar

1 cinnamon stick

2 bay leaves

90g redcurrant jelly

20g walnut halves

Salt and pepper

Place all ingredients into a pan and bring to the boil. Gently simmer for 2-3 hours until liquid has reduced and the beetroot is cooked, stir and check seasoning. Set aside to cool.

 

Watercress

12g watercress

Wash and trim watercress

 

Candy Beetroot

2 candy beetroot, raw

Thinly slice and elegantly arrange on the plate as per the picture.

Walnuts

20g walnut halves

Tablespoon melted butter

Mix walnuts through melted butter. Line a tray with grease proof paper and lay out the walnuts halves and bake in the oven until golden.

 

Arrange all elements onto the plate as per the picture.

Hall & Co: Spanish Tapas


Borlotti Bean and Chorizo Stew

tapas.jpg

INGREDIENTS

2x400g tins borlotti bean

3 banana shallots

4 Cloves garlic

30g tomato paste

1ltr passata

300ml red wine

300g spicy chorizo sausage (diced)

Pinch saffron

Salt and pepper to taste

Handful chopped oregano

 

 

Begin by chopping shallots and gently frying in a splash of olive oil.

Cook for 2-3 minutes until tender, crush garlic and add to shallots, fry for a minute or two.

Add diced chorizo and cook for 8-10 minutes until the chorizo is lightly coloured and tender, now add the tomato paste and cook again for a further 2-3 minutes.

Add the red wine and saffron, once reduced add the pasatta and the borlotti beans, season with salt and pepper.

To intensify the flavour cook the stew (covered) in the oven at 160 degrees for an hour to an hour and a half, (for a quicker solution simmer on the stove top for 30 minutes)

To serve sprinkle with the oregano and plenty of parmesan

CDC Weddings: French Cuisine


Confit Duck Leg, Potato Rösti, Braised Red Cabbage, Carrot Purée and Port Sauce

Confit Duck leg

4 duck legs

1 litre duck fat

Place the legs in a deep oven proof dish. Put in the meat and cover with the rendered fat. Cover the dish with foil and place in the oven to cook for 3 hours or until the meat comes easily away from the bone. Leave to cool in the fat. Set aside for later.

 

Potato rosti

75g Unsalted butter

2 Thyme sprigs

Salt

750g Peeled potatoes

Combine all ingredients together. Line a deep tray with baking parchment and press the mix into the tray. Cover with foil and bake at 180 degrees for 60 minutes. Remove the foil and then bake for another 15 minutes. Cool and set aside for later.

 

Braised red cabbage

350g sliced red cabbage

70ml red wine vinegar

70ml red cooking wine

5g caster sugar

3g ground cinnamon

6g redcurrant jelly

Salt

Mix all ingredients together and place in a large pan. Leave braised cabbage to cook, stirring occasionally until cabbage is tender. Set aside for later.

 

Carrot puree

80g Diced carrot

2g caster sugar

3g pomace oil

2g Maldon salt

Boil carrots until cooked, Drain 90% of water, add oil, sugar and salt and blend until smooth.

 

Port sauce

300ml beef stock

100ml red wine

100ml port

2 tbsp redcurrant jelly

Place the beef stock into a sauce pan and reduce by one third. Add the red wine, port and redcurrant jelly. Leave to simmer for arpund 45 minutes or until the sauce coats the back of the spoon. Set aside for later.

To assemble the dish

Put the rosti in the oven until hot in the middle, Put the puree into a small pan and put on a low heat, Heat the cabbage in a pan on a low heat, Put the sauce into a small pan to heat. Fry the duck legs in a little oil until crispy and once all elements are hot, assemble onto the plate as per the picture.

Hall & Co: Middle Eastern


Chicken, apricot and za’atar koftas, coriander and lemon yoghurt, charred corn salsa, lemon oil and Toasted nigella seeds

Ingredients

250g chicken mince

250g sausage meat (we find chicken mince too wet on its own so add the sausage meat)

2 banana shallots

3 cloves garlic

Handful chopped dried apricots

1x tablespoon za’atar

Salt and pepper

Handful chopped coriander

1 lemon

200g natural Greek yoghurt

1 corn on the cob

1 red onion

Tablespoon nigella seeds

Handful chopped oregano

100ml extra virgin olive oil

1 bottle lemon oil

Begin by gently frying the diced banana shallots, cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the grated garlic and cook for 1-2 minutes, allow to cool.

Add to the minced meats, chopped apricots, half tablespoon of the za’atar, salt and pepper, give this a really good mix and shape into small kofta sausages.

Allow to cool in the fridge for about an hour.

While the koftas are cooling make the corn salsa, place the corn in a pan of boiling water for 2-3 minutes and then run under cooled water.

Pat the corn dry with a tea towel until completely dry, now with a blow torch char the corn on the cob all over.

Once charred with a sharp knife cut the corn kernels off the core, place in a bowl and add the diced red onion, ½ tablespoon nigella seeds, remaining za’atar, chopped oregano and olive oil, season to taste and mix well.

Lightly toast the remaining nigella seeds and place to one side.

To serve cook the koftas on a chargrill or BBQ for best flavour, once cooked, place on top of a good spoon of the yoghurt, sprinkle the corn salsa and toasted nigella seeds and finish with a good drizzle of lemon oil.

CDC Weddings: British Cuisine


Roast Sirloin, Potato Terrine, Pea Purée, Tenderstem Broccoli, Pickled Girolles, Watercress, Red Wine Sauce

Potato Terrine

750g Whole peeled potatoes

75g Butter

Maldon sea salt

Thinly slice potato and mix with salt and melted butter. Line a tray with grease proof paper and lay potato mix to fill the tray. Cover with tin foil and bake in the oven for 30-40 mins.

 

Roasted beef

480g Beef Sirloin

Vegetable oil

Thyme

Maldon Sea salt

Peeled garlic cloves

Trim the beef sirloin of any sinew and heavy amounts of fat. Rub with oil and seasonings. Sear in a very hot pan and leave to cool.

 

Pea and Mint puree

50g peas

50g baby spinach

50g Mint leaves

25g double cream

5g unsalted butter

Maldon sea salt

Bring butter, cream and salt to the boil. Steam the spinach, peas and mint for 3 minutes. Place all ingredients into a blender and blend on full until smooth. Pass through a fine sieve and set aside for later.

 

140g Tenderstem broccoli

Trim broccoli stalks. Steam for 2 or 3 minutes until cooked. This should be done just before serving.


5g Watercress

Wash and trim watercress

 

Pickled girolles

Pickling liquor

250ml white wine vinegar

250ml Caster sugar

Bay leaf

5g peppercorns

100ml water

Place all ingredients together in a pan and boil for 5 minutes. Set aside to cool and prepare the mushrooms. Add to the pickling liquor and leave to pickle for at least 1 hour.

 

Red wine sauce

300ml beef stock

150ml red wine

2 tbsp red currant jelly

Place the beef stock into a saucepan and reduce by one third. Add the red wine and red currant jelly. Leave to simmer for around 45 mins or until the sauce coats the back of the spoon. Set aside for later.

 

To assemble

Cook the sirloin in the oven at 180 degrees to your liking. Put the terrine in the oven until golden and hot in the middle. Heat the pea puree in a pan and heat the red wine sauce in a separate pan.  Steam the broccoli.

Arrange all the elements on the plate as in the picture shown.

Let's beGIN...

The gin and tonic has saved more Englishmen’s lives and minds than all the doctors in the empire.
— Winston Churchill

Over the past few years, this once humble spirit has seen a renaissance with British distilleries more than doubling in the past five years. Bars across the country have their own ‘Gin Lists’ to cater for the variety of brands making this spirit the ‘go to’ drink for cocktail and spirit lovers - we even have a Gin Club at the Granary Barns too!

As we celebrate ‘World Gin Day’ today and our nation continues to fall in love with this versatile spirit all over again, we want to celebrate a few of the local distilleries in our region and find out how you could serve up a delicious cocktail this evening using their products to enjoy on your Saturday night! We can feel the hangovers coming on already! ;) #WorldGinDay


Cambridge Distillery Dill Sour-min.jpg

Ingredients

Cambridge Dry Gin 30ml

Lemon 25ml

Honey syrup 20ml

Apple juice 25ml

Egg white

Fresh dill, seasonal flower and dill pollen to garnish

Method

Combine all ingredients in a shaker, dry shake then shake with ice. Fine strain and serve over ice in tumbler. Garnish with dill pollen, dill and fresh flowers.

 

Cold Brew Martinez

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Ingredients

Cambridge Dry Gin  30ml

Sweet Vermouth  20ml

Cold Brew Coffee 10ml

Cherry syrup (Monin)  5ml

Angostura bitters 2 drops

Tiny pinch of salt

Rose buds and Turkish delight to garnish

 

Method

Add all ingredients in to a mixing beaker, stir and strain in to chilled coupette. Garnish with rose buds and a Turkish delight.

 

Elderflower Collins

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Ingredients

30ml Cambridge Dry Gin

30ml Cambridge Elderflower Liqueur

20ml fresh lemon juice

10ml sugar syrup

100ml tonic water

Lemon zest and seasonal flowers to garnish

 

Method⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀

Fill a long glass with ice, and add your favourite tonic. Shake the first four ingredients quickly with ice, and pour into your glass. Garnish with lemon zest and your choice of edible spring flowers.

Located in central Cambridge you’ll find The Cambridge Gin Laboratory, an interactive space dedicated to the appreciation of gin! It’s a fantastic afternoon out where you can tour the laboratory, learn about the origins of gin, the processes used to make it and tastings are also available for all of you gin lovers out there! You can even have you very own personalised bottle made!

THE CAMBRIDGE GIN LAB, 10 Green Street, Cambridge, CB2 3JU


NEWMARKET GIN

Bees Knees

bees knees cocktail.jpg


INGREDIENTS

50ml The Newmarket Gin

2 teaspoons honey

20ml fresh lemon juice

20ml fresh orange juice

METHOD

Add The Newmarket Gin and honey to a shaker and stir until all of the honey dissolves. Add the splash of lemon juice and orange juice and top up with ice. Shake well before straining into a martini glass. Garnish with an orange zest twist.

 

Gin Garden

summery cocktail.jpg

INGREDIENTS

50ml The Newmarket Gin

100ml cloudy apple juice

25ml elderflower liqueur

25ml freshly squeezed lemon juice

Garnish with lemon or apple

Method

Half fill your shaker with ice. Add The Newmarket Gin, elderflower liqueur, lemon and cloudy apple juice and shake until combined. Strain into an ice filled hurricane glass and garnish with a slice of apple or a twist of lemon peel.

 

Berry Bramble

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INGREDIENTS

50ml The Newmarket Gin

·25ml freshly squeezed lemon juice

¾ tbsp sugar syrup

ice cubes

crushed ice

¾ tbsp crème de mure

1 lemon

Handful of fresh blackberries

METHOD

Muddle 6 blackberries in a rocks glass. Add 50ml of The Newmarket Gin, 25ml of freshly squeezed lemon juice, 25ml of sugar syrup into a mixer and shake! Then fill the glass two thirds full with crushed ice before pouring. Mix with a long-handled spoon. Top with more crushed ice and garnish with a blackberry on top! Yum.

The Newmarket Gin is handcrafted in small batches using an exclusive combination of ten botanicals in perfect balance to create an exceptionally smooth and refreshing English Botanist gin.

Since launching The Newmarket Gin has won a selection of prestigious awards for its design, taste and packaging including the Harpers Design Awards, International Spirits Challenge (ISC) and The Dieline Awards.

The Newmarket Gin is exclusively available from specially selected local stocklists including Bedford Lodge Hotel & Spa, Corney & Barrow, Palace House Shop and Majestic Wine.


PINKSTER GIN

Romantic Fashion

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INGREDIENTS

50ml Pinkster (Two x 25ml measures)

1ml Pink grapefruit zest

Teaspoon caster sugar

Pink grapefruit wedge (squeeze)


METHOD

Build in a short tumbler, squeeze grapefruit wedge in glass before discarding. Stir initially with three ice cubes until caster sugar has dissolved, then  add second measure of gin and stir. Garnish with grapefruit zest.

 

Je T’Aime

INGREDIENTS

37.5ml Pinkster

15ml Chambord or raspberry liqueur

50ml Pineapple juice


METHOD

Shake hard to create the foam layer and double strain in Martini glass. Float raspberries on top.

Pink Fizz

Pink Fizz.jpg

INGREDIENTS

20ml Pinkster

10ml Chambord or raspberry liqueur

10ml Lemon Juice

METHOD

Top with Prosecco.

G&J, one of the country’s oldest distillers, was recruited to help in bringing Pinkster to life. The core spirit with five botanicals, along with plump raspberries grown nearby Pinkster’s base just outside Cambridge, were brought together to create the delicious drink we can buy today! If you are attending an event at the barns, why not sample some of this premium gin for yourself!

The Granary Barns: A Meeting Space

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When your company or business has a meeting or a corporate lunch, do you opt to stay in-house or leave the office to venture to a different destination? Sometimes stepping out of your work environment can be refreshing and a nice change from the everyday surroundings and tasks we see and have in the workplace.

At The Granary Barns we can accommodate a range of events and welcome all types of functions and businesses through our doors. We can facilitate events such as:

  • Seminars

  • Exhibitions & Trade Shows

  • Conferences

  • Training Days

  • Boardroom Meetings

  • Corporate Dining - Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

  • Company Celebrations

  • Christmas Parties

  • Awards Evenings

  • Networking Events

  • Product Launches

  • Retreat Days

  • Team Building Events

Working alongside our Granary catering teams, we create bespoke packages to suit your event. Everything is tailored to your needs and we are on hand to help with all aspects of the day and planning stages, as well as being present on the day.

Once again one of the highlights on our feedback forms was the quality of the venue and the food and everyone commented on what a fantastic space it is.
— Previous client


If you want to experience one of our networking events for yourself, why not join us at our next ‘Business at the Barns’ event in 12th June? As well as the chance to meet local professionals in our region (with some delicious treats and a selection of beverages), we also welcome you to come and take a look around our barn venue. You never know, we could play host to your next event or board meeting!

Business at the Barns provided a relaxed, informal and friendly setting to network. It was well attended with a good range of businesses from across the area. It was refreshing to not have any presentations and alongside the lovely setting put everyone at ease and allowed attendees to talk freely
— - BATB Attendee

If you have any questions about our venue or if we could be the perfect place to host your next event, please contact our Events Manager on becca@thegranaryestates.co.uk. We’d love to hear from you!

Start your wedding journey with us...

Last week, we threw our styling hats on and got creative in the barns to show you how, even without beam styling, the barns can look elegant, colourful and full of life!

With help from the lovely team at local hiring company CMA Hire, we were able to dress the tables with lush dove grey cloths, coloured glassware and marble charger plates. These additional touches really added a luxury feel, giving a sophisticated look with a modern finish. The options CMA Hire provide are endless so you can get really creative if table styling is your passion!

The team at Hall & Co. Event Design also provided some of their gorgeous pieces from their prop shop, enabling us to enhance areas of the lounge area and Milling Room for a bit of cosy styling inspo! We especially love the glass vases the team provided for our centre piece styling, alongside green pops of colour and foliage from Florist extraordinaire Clare Jones!

As you can see, we haven’t over styled the barns and have let the natural beauty of the building shine through. So if getting creative does’t come naturally to you, if you prefer to keep things simple (less is more as they say) or if your budget doesn’t allow for a lot of styling, we could be the venue for you! :)


As we dive into May and all things weddings, it is the perfect time to come and take a look around our venue. We can hold your exclusive viewing during the week, but also have appointments available on Saturday mornings and on Sundays so we can work around you! We tend to have weddings set up at the weekends so this is the prime time to come along :)

We have appointments available in June so why not start your wedding journey with us and come to have your own personal tour on the barns? To speak with our events team (GG’s Becca, Parris and Naomi) simply give us a call on 01638 731230 or email info@thegranaryestates.co.uk. We look forward to speaking with you soon!

Have a great weekend! x

Meet The Experts: The Luxe Paper Co.

Designing stationery is such a personal journey, it sets the tone and story for such special occasions and I love being able to be a part of that process.

Hi Chloe! Tell us a bit about yourself and how you founded The Luxe Paper Co.

Hi I’m Chloe and I’m the designer behind The Luxe Paper Co. I’m obsessed with stationery, typography, luxury papers and anything with gold foil! I’m a self-professed font and paper geek and I get excited every time new orders arrive.

Design is a huge part of my life and I am lucky enough to do what I love on a daily basis. As well as designing wedding stationery, I have years of experience working in agencies collaborating with a vast array of clients from small and national companies to large global ones.

After creating stationery for family and friends weddings, I fell in love with the idea of being able to create something so special that tells such a personal story. Few belongings can better tell the story of your most important memories than special occasion stationery.

Therefore taking my design experience and passion for stationery I was inspired to take the leap and launch The Luxe Paper Co.

All images courtesy of The Luxe Paper Co.

All images courtesy of The Luxe Paper Co.

I’ve only recently this year taken the leap and launched The Luxe Paper Co. I’ve designed a lot of wedding stationery for family and friends the last few years but it was designing my own this year that led me to set up properly.

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What’s the best thing about your job?

It goes without saying that receiving feedback is one of the very best parts about my job. There is nothing better than knowing that the stationery you have put so much time and love into creating is adored by the client it has have been created for.

Designing stationery is such a personal journey, it sets the tone and story for such special occasions and I love being able to be a part of that process.

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If you could give a piece of advice to a couple planning their wedding, what would it be?

Get an early start so that you won’t feel rushed later, once you’ve found the perfect venue and secured your date, book in with a stationer, especially if you are looking for something bespoke, as they often get booked up quickly and it’s an important part in creating the theme for your day.

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What areas of the business have changed since you started? Are there certain trends making their way through this year?

I think stationery has become a massive part of the wedding industry; it’s a very personal process and defines the style and tone of the whole wedding and the couple themselves. More than ever couples are looking for something bespoke and personal.

In 2019 I think Perspex and vellum are going to continue to be massive and while pastels and pinks are commonly associated with wedding stationery, darker hues are looking to take centre stage, as a formal but more luxury option.

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What are your favourite colours or patterns to work with?

This is a really difficult question; I love really rich and deep colours, a gold foil finish is also a firm favourite of mine. With every couple comes a different brief and wedding which is always so exciting as I know I’ll get to experiment with different fonts, colours, papers and themes.

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What have you got lined up for the rest of the year?

As well as moving house, travelling America and continuing to plan my own wedding for next year, I am looking forward to meeting and working with new couples and growing The Luxe Paper Co. I am also excited to be attending a family wedding in the summer at The Granary Estates.

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I am so delighted to be a recommended supplier for The Granary Estates. It is such a stunning venue with beautiful grounds and the staff are very friendly and welcoming. I’ve been fortunate enough to attend several weddings as a guest here and feel privileged to be a supplier.

Thanks Chloe!

To see more of Chloe’s beautiful work, hit the button below!

Real Weddings at The Granary Barns

SAM + CLARE

05.05.18

Not everyone has their wedding day planned out to the finest detail, and with so many options nowadays, it’s no surprise!

Sam and Clare weren’t really sure where they wanted to get married when they began planning their big day, but after looking around a variety of venues, they fell in love with the barns and, as they say, the rest is history!

See a selection of images from their special day last May taken by the epic duo Lina & Tom :)

Now it’s over to Mr & Mrs Edwards… enjoy!

PICKING THE DRESS

I couldn’t wait to go dress shopping and decided to try everything on and keep an open mind. That said, I always swore I’d never go for a tight dress, I thought I’d go for an a-line design as it’d be more flattering. However, that wasn’t the case - dresses I thought would suit me just weren’t right and I ended up going to six shops and before I found the dress for me.

In the end, one of my bridesmaids suggested a tight fitting Maggie Sottero dress as a wild card and I loved it the second I put it on. I adored the detail, the cut and the antique ivory colour - it was the first dress that made me feel truly special.

 

SUITED & BOOTED

Sam treated himself to a new suit from Gray Palmer in Saffron Walden, which is also where we hired suits for the groomsmen. I felt it was equally as important that he felt as special in his suit as I did in my dress, and buying one that was best cut to his shape made such a difference. The groomsmen’s suits were a similar colour, but Sam wore a contrasting tweed waistcoat.

We went shopping together and we agreed unanimously on the same one. He looked gorgeous!

THE VENUE & DECORATION

We genuinely had no idea what sort of venue we wanted, and had loads of fun exploring country houses, castle and hotels. However, none of them felt right - for many reasons. Our photographers recommended the Granary Barns, which we hadn't heard of before.

We visited on a cold winter’s day when the stunning Christmas tree and decorations were up and it was definitely love at first sight. Along with the striking beauty of the barns, we loved the team too. We felt they absolutely got ‘us’ as a couple and knew we could trust them to deliver the best possible day for us. At lots of venues you feel like you’d be ‘just another wedding’ but we never got that feeling at Granary Barns. We talked about the venue all the way home, full of ideas and excitement - that was the only venue that made us respond in that way.

We didn’t feel the need to massively decorate the barns as they are so uniquely beautiful already. The only ‘major’ addition was fairy lights twisted round the beams in the Flint Barn and draped over the dance floor in the Granary Barn. We wanted the day to really reflect us as a couple, so while we made a nod to Sam’s love of football at the church ceremony through our order of service and signage, we opted for a radio theme at the Barns because we met working in radio and we really love it still. We sourced old fashioned radios on eBay, our tables were named after radio shows and Hall & Co. - whose team created our beautiful centrepieces using the radios - lent us a wonderful old radio sideboard which stood proudly in the hallway.

Our colour theme was ‘colourful’, so bright spring flowers were one of the main focuses of our decor. In addition to the beautiful centrepiece displays we placed our bridesmaids bouquets in vases and dotted them around the venue, and we re-used our pew ends from the church, hanging them outside. We had a few smaller touches too - creating a ‘wish you were here’ table in the hall in dedication to close family and friends no longer with us and we had table football in the courtyard; the scene of many well-contested games during the day!

 

FLOWERS

Our flowers were done by Julia Pasfield at The Little Wedding Shed. We met her at a wedding fair, and while it was clear she was brilliant at her craft, we got on with her so well and felt she’d be truly invested in our day, so that sealed the deal. I also liked that she sources her flowers locally.

We opted for seasonal spring flowers and we wanted them to be a variety of bright colours and textures. Julia set up a Pinterest board suggesting different options based on what was in season, but to be honest I trusted her to choose. I was lucky that peonies and ranunculus were in season - the bouquets and displays were stunning, she absolutely delivered.

BRIDE SQUAD

I had four bridesmaids; my closest friends and my cousin.

I was really worried about bridesmaid dresses, as I really wanted each of them to feel really confident and happy in their outfits. The only thing I was sure of was I wanted a neutral colour so the colourful bouquets stood out, but I was relaxed in terms of style - I just wanted them to feel good. I ordered loads of dresses in different styles from ASOS and amazingly they all loved the same one, so it was actually really easy and they all looked gorgeous in them.

Getting ready with my bridesmaids in the morning was the perfect start to the day. The sun was shining, we had the best team doing hair and make up, my dad took his job of keeping Prosecco flowing very seriously and it was just so relaxed and happy. We walked together from my parent’s house to the church singing wedding songs and had a huge hug outside… I loved every second of it.

THE VOWS

I felt the most excited and happy I’ve ever felt about anything. I guess there was some nervous energy but I genuinely couldn’t wait to see Sam and become his wife!

Our top priority when planning the wedding was making sure we could afford to have all our family and friends there. It meant we cut costs on luxuries like a cake (which I baked myself), we didn’t have a wedding car and we created all the stationary ourselves.. with the help of some talented friends. I am so glad we did, as it was one of the best things about the day knowing all our favourite people were there with us.

I can remember everything… I think… but it did fly by. I’d been told by lots of people to try and soak it all in because it goes by really quickly, so I made a real effort to.

 

CATERING

We chose the incredible Hall & Co. Event Design. We loved their menu and approach - the team was both friendly and relaxed but super organised - and from stalking their Instagram, I had a pretty good feeling the food would be outstanding and presented beautifully. We love food so it was really important to us it was of a really high standard, and they more than delivered.

Our food tasting was one of the best days of planning, I’m not going to lie! We chose a variety of vegetarian and meat canapés, including the hugely popular tomato soup shots with mini cheese toasties, mini Yorkshire pudding with roast beef and pea, mint and feta blinis. They were demolished! As I’m vegetarian I really wanted to  make sure the veggie guests were well catered for, so we opted for shared antipasti sharing boards for starters and BBQ for main, which worked particularly well with the warm sunny weather we ended up having. The puddings were the showstoppers though - each guest had four mini puddings, chocolate brownie, sticky toffee pudding, lemon tart and pavlova and strawberries. So many brides apparently don’t eat much on the day… but there was no way I was missing out on those puddings.  We had SO many compliments about how brilliant the food was.

 

PARTY TIME!

The Granary looked stunning for the reception. Obviously the barns speak for themselves and as it was the height of spring, the grounds were full of colour. As it was a sunny day our drinks reception was held outside in the courtyard and it just looked beautiful. 

We really wanted a busy dance floor all night long, playing our favourite tunes. We booked a friend of ours to DJ which meant we could ensure the playlist was as we wanted.

We found picking a first dance song so difficult and it took us months! We opted for Clean Bandit, Symphony. We both love Clean Bandit, the lyrics were ideal and as it’s up tempo, we felt it was a bit more fun too.

I spent most of the evening on the dance floor, singing and dancing with my favourite people feeling the happiest I’ve ever felt. It doesn’t get much better! And yes, I wish I could relive the whole day over and over.

 

WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY

The super talented and brilliant Lina and Tom were our photographers. I’d met Lina years earlier through work and after browsing their website I knew I’d want them for my wedding - luckily, Sam agreed! I loved that their photos seemed ‘real’ and natural, as well as hugely creative and beautifully composed. They are both so friendly I knew we’d love working with them and feel like we were in safe hands.  I emailed Lina the day after we got engaged to see what their  availability was in spring 2018 and got them booked before anything else!

We had a few preview images the day after the wedding, but the full collection arrived in just under two months. It was SO exciting when they arrived - we spent hours looking through them, reliving the day and getting a little emotional. As expected, the photos were beautiful and captured our day perfectly.

Tom took some amazing photos of our house rabbit, Clifford that we love! I’m not sure I could pick a favourite - although the sunset shots are probably the most visually striking.

A selection of prints are on the wall in our living room, and an album is on the way!

 

TAKE MY ADVICE...

I honestly look back at our wedding and know I loved every second of the day. Sam and I both agree that sitting at our wedding breakfast and seeing a room full of people we love all there to support us was the best feeling. Throughout the day there were so many special moments and highs; such as when I read a poem Sam had written before we went to the church, or walking down the aisle as husband and wife, or surprising Sam with a video featuring players from his football team during my speech or eating the delicious food or dancing the night away… it was just all the best ever.

I think if we did it again we wouldn’t change much at all. The only thing I regret is not getting photos with certain people - I don’t have one with just me and my brother, for example. I should have thought that through more beforehand. 

I’m really glad we spent time on personal touches. For example, we found photos of either me or Sam with each wedding guest and had them printed, using them as place cards. On the back we wrote where and when the photo was taken. It took AGES! We weren't in the room when people sat down, but apparently the reaction from the guests was brilliant - so many people told us how much they loved them and a year on, when we go round friend’s houses we often spotted the photos one display. So I’d prioritise those details again for sure.

I think we’d possibly ditch the first dance and cake cutting. The first dance felt a bit cringe to me - we’re not really ‘look at me’ type people and it felt a bit like that. Plus… you kind of know that once everyone has taken a photo they just stand there awkwardly (sorry… I know that’s very cynical!). I feel the same about the cake cutting… it felt a bit pointless. The cake eating though, was great! Don’t be afraid to ditch any of the traditions if you think they’re not ‘you’.

If money is tight decide between the two of you what really matters, then prioritise those things and make savings elsewhere.

Invest in a good photographer and videographer. You spend a lot of time with them on the day, plus, you will always have those photos and videos to remember your day.

Make it YOUR day, personal to the two of you. There will no doubt be people who will have a less positive view on some of your choices but stick to your guns. It is absolutely worth the effort.

Easter Feasts with CDC Events

Ever wondered how the tradition of eating fish on

Good Friday came to be?

Image - bbc.com

Image - bbc.com

‘Abstinence from meat on Fridays is actually a rule laid out by the Vatican and remains in force today. Many Christians, especially Catholics, refrain from eating meat on Friday, and this tradition is most popular on Good Friday. Jesus was executed on Good Friday and died for our sins, sacrificing his flesh for us.

On the anniversary of Christ’s death, the church encourages followers to abstain from eating the flesh of warm-blooded animals on this day. People are told to go for the alternative which is fish. As fish comes from the sea, they are 'cold-blooded, it is thought of as a different kind of flesh meaning it is okay for consumption on Good Friday.’ - Metro.co.uk



Originally a religious tradition, this seems to have made it’s way into our Easter celebrations in the UK and one which many follow, religious or not.

Granary supplier and catering team CDC Events, have have provided us with a delicious fish dish to try out tomorrow night for those of you wanting a tasty treat this Good Friday…

THAI FISHCAKE

WITH LIME MAYONNAISE, CARROT, MOULI, SESAME + CHILLI SAUCE

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FISHCAKE INGREDIENTS

200g Diced Cod

6g Red Chilli

6g Garlic Cloves

5g Lemongrass

4g Ginger

40g Coconut Milk

10g Lime Juice

30g Panko Bread Crumbs

5g Coriander Finely Chopped

Method

- Skin & dice cod, steam/bake (at 180) for 15 mins, then set aside to cool

- Blend garlic, lemongrass, ginger, chilli, coconut milk and lime juice in a blender to a paste

- Break up the fish and combine with coconut mix, panko, salt and coriander

- Shape into desired 65g patties then place in fridge to firm for later.

LIME MAYONNAISE

60g Mayonnaise

1/2 Lime (zest + juice)

 

Method

Mix together and place into a squeezy bottle or piping bag.

CARROT + MOULI SLAW

70g Carrot (julienne cut or grated

70g Mouli (julienne cut or grated)

Black sesame seeds – 1 pinch

Lime juice – ½ a lime

Salt – 1 pinch

 

Method

Mix ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.

To Serve:

-       Pan fry fish cake either side to get a golden colour, place into oven for 8 mins.

-       Place carrot slaw onto the plate, and pipe mayonnaise next to it.

-       Once fishcake is cooked, place on to plate, garnish with chilli oil and coriander cress.


Not only have we got this delicious treat to try but CDC have also provided us with one more recipe to gather the family together around the table this Easter Sunday.

Before you crack open the Easter eggs, why not grab the ingredients and make this mouth-watering dish for you and your loved ones this weekend…


LAMB RUMP

FONDANT POTATO, PARSNIP PUREE, POACHED PEAR & PORT SAUCE

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Serves 6 | Difficulty: Hard


What you need:

Fondant Potato 

6 large maris pipers 

250g butter 


Pickled Mushrooms 

50ml white wine vinegar
50g caster sugar 

100ml white wine 

100g wild mushrooms 


Port Sauce 

300ml beef stock 

100ml red wine 

100ml port
2 tbsp redcurrant jelly 


Parsnip Purée 

500g parsnips 

280ml double cream 


Poached Pear 

3 William pears 

225g caster sugar 

500ml water

6 juniper berries 


Assembly 

lamb rump steak

4 garlic cloves, sprig of thyme
a knob of butter 

200g baby leaf spinach 


Equipment 

8cm ring cutter


To Make the Fondant Potato 

Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/160 °C Fan/Gas Mark 4. Push the ring cutter into the potato cutting it at both sides to form a circle. Pan fry lightly on either side in a knob of butter and place into a small, deep oven tray. Melt the rest of the butter and pour over the potatoes. Season, cover with foil and cook in the oven for 1 hour. To test, poke a small knife through the potato - it should feel like a soft packet of butter. Remove the fondants from the butter and drain. Set to one side for later. 

To Pickle the Mushrooms 

In a pan bring the vinegar, sugar and wine to the boil. Set aside to cool whilst cleaning and preparing the mushrooms. Fry the mushrooms in a little oil for 1-2 minutes then add to the pickling liquor. Leave to pickle for at least 1 hour. 

To Make the Port Sauce 

Place the beef stock into a sauce pan and reduce by one third. Add the red wine, port and red currant jelly. Leave to simmer for around 45 minutes or until the sauce coats the back of the spoon. Set aside for later. 

To Make the Parnsip Purée 

Peel and thinly slice the parsnips. In a saucepan cover the parnsips with water, add a pinch of salt and simmer for 20 minutes. Once soft drain off the water and add the double cream. Return to the heat and bring to a simmer. Then whizz it in a blender until smooth. Pass through a fine sieve and set aside for later. 

To Poach the Pear 

In a pan bring the sugar, water and juniper berries to a simmer. Peel the pears and cook them in the syrup for 15 minutes. They should still have a little resistance. Once cool cut in half and brown them in a pan with a knob of butter. Set aside. 

To Assemble 

Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180 °C Fan/Gas Mark 6. Place the fondant and pear in the oven. Season the lamb. Crush the garlic and thyme. Heat a frying pan and sear the lamb for 2-3 minutes. Turn over, add the garlic, thyme and a knob of butter. Fry for 2 more minutes. Finish the lamb in the oven for 4-6 minutes, then cut into steak slices. Meanwhile, wilt the spinach in a pan, drain the mushrooms and warm up the parnsip purée and port sauce. Arrange all the elements elegantly on the plate. 


Thanks to the team at CDC for providing these delish dishes!

If you would rather go out to eat this Easter, you could always visit one of the teams many restaurants in the Cambridgeshire area.

Hit the link below to see what restaurants are under their ownership… and check out the Easter Pudding Night taking place tonight and tomorrow night at The Crown & Punchbowl… YUM!

Spring Florals

With a variety of different wedding and events taking place under our timber beams, we see our fair share of stunning florals making their way through the barns.

As pops of colours and textures begin to emerge around our grounds, we wanted to take a closer look at some of the flowers which are at their prime during this season and the different ways they can be utilised at your spring nuptials or event… which ones are your favourite???

TULIPS

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

Image - gardenia.net

Image - gardenia.net

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

Image - theknot.com

Image - theknot.com

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

HYACINTH

Image - Rock My Wedding

Image - Rock My Wedding

Image - Crocus

Image - Crocus

Image - Rock My Wedding

Image - Rock My Wedding

PEONY

Image - Jackson & Co. Photography

Image - Jackson & Co. Photography

Image - bridemagazine.co.uk

Image - bridemagazine.co.uk

Image - notonthehighstreet.com

Image - notonthehighstreet.com

Image - ruffledblog.com

Image - ruffledblog.com

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

FREESIA

Image - chicvintagebrides.com

Image - chicvintagebrides.com

Image - bridalguide.com

Image - bridalguide.com

Image - the knot.com

Image - the knot.com

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

PUSSY WILLOW

Image - Google

Image - Google

Image - etsy.com

Image - etsy.com

Image - projectwedding.com

Image - projectwedding.com

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

Image - Rock My Wedding

Image - Rock My Wedding

AZALEA

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

Image - etsy.com

Image - etsy.com

Image - etsy.com

Image - etsy.com

Image - lovemydress.net

Image - lovemydress.net

Image - Pinterest

Image - Pinterest

Meet The Experts: Coversbygill

Always meet with your suppliers and be strong about exactly what you want.  Keep to your budget and remember that sometimes less is more!

Hi Gill! Tell us a bit about yourself and how you founded the business…

Hi my name is Gill! I am a mother of three and a grandmother of six.

At one of my daughter’s weddings, I was watching a company from Essex who came in to do the chair covers and as the gentleman was on his own I thought I would lend a hand.  Not being biased but my bows were better than the company that I had employed! I remember being proud of how a simple thing that I had done looked so good and then thinking wow, I can do this and get paid! Three months later, we were up and running…

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How long have you been trading and how has the company grown?

I have been trading for 8 years now and I have to say it was a little bit of luck that kick started Coversbygill.

A good friend of mine who was working as a Wedding Coordinator at a venue in town, asked to see what I had with the thought that if it was good enough, we could become a recommended supplier. As I only buy the best stock, it came down to me to show I could do the job…. I can happily say that after 8 years I still am on the supplier list for this venue!

Image - Daniel Ackerley Photography

Image - Daniel Ackerley Photography

 What’s the best thing about your job and what you do?

The best thing about my job is transforming a venue and bringing the brides vision to life. The girls that assist me are great as well.  We always work in a happy environment :)

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If you could give a piece of advice to a couple planning their wedding, what would it be?

Always meet with your suppliers and be strong about what you want.  Keep to your budget and remember that sometimes less is more!

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How do you feel about being a recommended supplier with us? What type of things have you done at the barns?

I am delighted to be a supplier for the barns because it is one of the most prestigious venues in our area.  With such a beautiful setting, the photos always look fab which is great for Coversbygill. The staff are so accommodating and helpful, often assisting whilst we are there.

Image - Daniel Ackerley Photography

Image - Daniel Ackerley Photography

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How could you help with alternative events such as corporate seminars/exhibitions etc.?

Coversbygill also supplies different colour table cloths, as well as chair covers, so if your event needs a little something different, we can provide those extra touches.  Some corporate events also love to have the company colours integrated in to their set up which we also accommodate with chair bands and cloths etc.

We repeatedly provide racing colours for events in and around the horse racing town of Newmarket which is just a few miles from the Granary Estates.

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What areas of the business have changed since you started? What trends do you see making their way through this year?

Coversbygill’s main business is chair styling and so the biggest change I have seen in recent years is the introduction of the chavari chair. At first this seemed a bit of a negative thing for us, mainly as these chairs are stunning on their own and don’t have a need to be covered, therefore making our services redundant.

However, luckily for us, the beautiful vertical chiffon drops and soft sashes were introduced by our suppliers which enabled us to bring something else in to the industry. We still continue with the event chairs however which always need a full cover as well.

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What is/are your favourite colour/colours to work with?

I love working with ivory as it always looks so chic. Navy and pink are timeless and I really love it when a little bit of sparkle or green foliage is added to the equation.  When I first started Cadbury Purple was king, but I haven’t seen it for a long time now. Lilac is pretty, and Hessian and lace give a lovely rustic theme.

I see the vision of my brides and as long as we meet that I am happy! On the down side tying Hessian is a task but good for the muscles!

What have you got lined up for the rest of 2019?

2019 is going to be a great year for the chiffon vertical or horizontal drops as new colours are coming out all the time. We are busy with lots of weddings in the spring/summer, with lots of Christmas parties in the Autumn and Winter. We also have a lot of Christmas and New Year weddings coming up. Who doesn’t love a Winter wedding?!

Thanks Gill!

To see more images and the array of options on offer with Coversbygill, take a look at the company Facebook page by clicking HERE!

Wedding Traditions: Where did they come from?

SOMETHING OLD, SOMETHING NEW

SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING BLUE

A SIXPENCE IN HER SHOE

Have you ever wondered where this rhyme originated? Or why we throw confetti? Or wear a veil…?

We’ve researched some of our most well known wedding traditions in the UK to find out where they came from and the significance they hold, even today.

WEARING WHITE

Wearing white on your wedding day has modern day connotations of purity, religion and virginity.

However, after some research we have found that the real reason white wedding dresses became so traditional was due to Queen Victoria and her wedding to Prince Albert in 1840. The Queen simply liked the colour (which only the wealthy could really afford in those times) and as a result it became the must have colour for wedding dresses! Victoria’s lace dress became a must have, with aristocratic families choosing the colour and material to display their wealth and status. Nothing to do with purity at all… interesting huh?

Embed-01-Queen-Victoria-Prince-Albert.jpg

GARTERS

A bit of an odd tradition right? We thought so too! We found this information from Bustle about this wedding idea…

Brides have always been seen as very good luck, and getting a piece of the wedding attire even more so. A medieval French tradition meant that immediately after they left the altar, brides were rushed by attendees wanting to tear off a bit of her gown for good fortune.

The result? A bride in rags, and probably not too pleased. The garter version, just like the bouquet toss, was devised sometime in history as a way to keep the mob at bay and still let the bride remain fully clothed.

We’re glad this has taken on much more of a fun and playful aspect of the day in recent years…! No ripping of dresses at The Granary please…!

Vintage Style Garter - notonthehighstreet.com

Vintage Style Garter - notonthehighstreet.com

WEDDING VEIL

A wedding veil is really down to personal preference with many brides choosing to wear it as an accessory, others for use during the ceremony and some not at all! We found this explanation about how veils came to be used on Cosmopolitan:

It turns out that veils first became popular in the Roman times when a red sheet, called a 'flammeum', was used to cover the bride from head-to-toe. This was supposed to make the bride look like she was on fire which, in turn, was intended to scare off any evil spirits looking to ruin her big day.

Over time, the veil became a method to disguise the bride from evil spirits and, of course, her husband who wasn't supposed to see his new wife until the deed was done. The un-veiling of the bride - done by the groom - was to symbolise that ownership has changed hands; from her father, to her husband.

So whether or not you would choose to wear one, the veil has been around for many years and looks set to be around as a wedding accessory for many years to come.

Image - Chasing Eve Photography

Image - Chasing Eve Photography


SOMETHING OLD

Originating from around the Victorian era, to have something ‘old’ on your person on your wedding day, was another method of keeping ‘evil spirits’ away. It would also signify continuity and hold a strong sentimental value. This would commonly be a piece of jewellery belonging to an older relation. Another well-loved item to use as ‘something old’ would be to wear the mother or grandmothers wedding dress - a very traditional and symbolic statement.


SOMETHING NEW

Having a ‘new’ item on your wedding day would symbolise good fortune and success in the couples new life together. Nowadays this can be any item such as clothing, a pocket watch or similar trinkets to carry with you - just a small token to signify a new chapter and optimism for the future. Lovely! :)


SOMETHING BORROWED

This one could have a double meaning…. by borrowing something from your friends or family, this was a promise from the lender to always have your best interests at heart and the promise to be there to support you whenever needed. It also has an added sentimental value attached to it which is what we think it’s all about :)

The alternative is to borrow something from an already happily married couple whose borrowed possession may ‘rub off’ some good luck on to you! During the 18th and 19th centuries, this would even go as far as borrowing a female relatives undergarments to encourage fertility following the marriage - we’re not sure this is such a favoured tradition nowadays!


SOMETHING BLUE

The colour blue symbolises purity, love and faithfulness. This dates back to biblical times when the colour was used to represent these virtues. Traditionally the colour blue can be seen in a brides garter, a bouquet or in small details like a piece of jewellery, for example.



A SIXPENCE IN HER SHOE

The sixpence tradition began in the late 17th century as a part of the dowry gift to the groom.

Wikipedia states ‘A dowry is a transfer of parental property, gifts or money at the marriage of a daughter”.

As time and traditions have moved on, this has evolved and now a sixpence is used as a good luck charm by the bride and typically worn in the left shoe throughout the day. It symbolises wealth and happiness.


WHICH SIDE SHOULD I SIT?

Having seen many weddings under our timber beams over the past 6 years, we know that this wedding tradition isn’t as prevalent nowadays. All the same, we found it really interesting to find our just where this idea came from! This article from The Spruce explains it perfectly…

Wedding lore tells us that hundreds of years ago, kidnappers would often capture and hurry off with the bride in order to steal her dowry. So, in order to ensure that the groom could keep his sword arm (the right) free, the bride stood on the other side (the left.) Today, in spite of the fact that the groom rarely wears a sword nor needs to fend off attackers, you'll almost always see the bride standing on the groom's left. It is also traditional for wedding guests to follow suit. Typically, the bride's guests and family sit on the left, while the groom's family and guests sit on the right.

If you’re not a huge fan of this tradition, signs such as ‘Choose a seat, not a side, we’re all family once the knot is tied’ are a great way to let people know your thoughts on this :)

Image - Ania Ames Photography

Image - Ania Ames Photography

YOU CAN’T SEE HER BEFORE THE WEDDING!

This long standing and still very much used tradition is one that got us scratching our heads a bit! Brides also took a look into this and found the following:

One such tradition that we take for granted today is the superstition that it is bad luck to see the bride on the wedding day. Now, we must ask ourselves: but why would it be bad luck to see the bride? Picture this: You're an Elizabethan-era father who scraped together enough goats and cows to make a compelling dowry for your teenage daughter, and you're this close to getting her married to the fella down the street. You've been negotiating with his family for months, and you've nearly got it in the bag. The last thing you would want is for the groom-to-be to catch a glimpse of your daughter the morning of the wedding and realise that—bless her heart—she's a homely thing. Why, if he saw her before the very second she arrived at the altar, he might run, and now wouldn't that be bad luck? Better to be safe than sorry—you have your daughter don a veil, too. Now there's no way he can make a quick getaway as she treks down the aisle. Phew!

Wow. Just wow… :/

With all of the above aside, we do really enjoy this tradition in its modern form. To be present when the bride and groom, groom and groom or bride and bride see each other for the first time on the day is simply magical! And for this reason, we like this tradition and all of the excitement and anticipation it brings with it. LOVE!


CONFETTI

The tradition of throwing items such as rice, seeds, flowers and small sweets began many centuries back, with the more modern option of paper being adopted as the confetti of choice by the Victorians (it would hurt a lot less than getting rained on by candy or getting a bit of rice in the eye!).

The word ‘confetti’ is the plural of the Italian word ‘confetto’, meaning small sweet. The Italians would favour throwing small sweets or almonds to signal the start of the informal celebrations, which leads us on to another wedding favourite over the years… sugared almonds. You learn something new everyday! :)

Image - Greg Coltman Photography

Image - Greg Coltman Photography

CARRYING A BOUQUET

Now this one is quite straight forward.

In times gone by, when people would only bathe a couple of times a year, a bouquet was carried on the wedding day in order to mask the smell and make the bride feel better. Even though our bathing habits are now far better and take place more regularly (hopefully), this tradition has stayed and we for one love it!

A bouquet is a great way to add a personal touch to your wedding day, add a pop of colour to your wedding photos as well as giving the bride (or groom) something to hold as they make their way down the aisle. It is a nerve-racking moment after all!

GOING ACROSS THE THRESHOLD

The Knot describes this tradition below:

The ancient Romans started it: the bride had to show that she was not at all crazy about leaving her father's home, and so was dragged over the threshold to her groom's house. Ancients also believed that evil spirits, in a last-ditch effort to curse the couple, hovered at the threshold of their new home, so the bride had to be lifted to ensure that the spirits couldn't enter her body through the soles of her feet. These days, it's just fun!

We’re glad it’s all a bit of fun these days… no evil spirits please!


So there you have it folks! Just a few of the popular wedding traditions that we are all familiar with in the UK. It’s just so interesting to look back at our history and understand the things which are still happening today after so many years!

Are there other wedding or event related blogs you would like to see? Or topics that we could help you with via a blog? We are always happy to hear from you so please do get in touch if you have specific content you want us to take a look at!

Thanks for visiting our blog :)

The GG’s x

Real Weddings at The Granary Barns

CALUM + FINOLA

07.07.18


Let us transport you back to a warm summers day last July last year, when we had the pleasure of creating wonderful memories with our bride and groom, Finola and Calum.

With flashes of tartan, gorgeous blooms from Clare Jones, hessian runners mixed with pale pink shades and a room full of family and friends, Mr & Mrs MacAulay had a wedding day dreams are made of!

Scroll down to hear Finola’s thoughts on her special day, the planning stages and how you shouldn’t sweat the small stuff! Accompanied by a delightful selection of photos by the talented Liam Smith Photography, we hope you enjoy!

PICKING THE DRESS

I tried to keep an open mind and not overthink what kind of dress I wanted prior to going to any shops. I had heard people say that if you did, you would be disappointed. That the dream dress maybe wouldn’t quite fit the way you had always imagined or look quite right on you.

I booked my first appointment for one sunny summer Saturday at Pure Brides in Norwich. I had no idea what kind of dress would suit my shape so found it hard to get started. The girls at Pure Brides helped pick out a few different designs to try on. The second dress I put on was a Sottero & Midgley dress. As I walked out to reveal it I caught a glimpse in the mirror across the room. From that point on a couldn’t wipe the smile off my face, my mum and twin sister were crying and I knew that we had found the dress. The crisp white embellished lace layered over a light gold material underneath really made the detail pop.

It was perfect, and I looked no further - it really did make me feel so special.

 

SUITED & BOOTED

Calum had an easy decision. His family are Scottish, so he was always going to wear his kilt. The groomsmen hired kilts with similar colours to the MacAulay Hunting tartan that Calum and his family were going to wear with blue waistcoats and grey tie. Calum wore a grey waistcoat with navy tie so that he would look slightly different to the rest of the boys.

 

THE VENUE & DECORATION

I found picking venues to view really difficult. I felt like I had looked at every website of venues in East Anglia by the time we actually booked some appointments! During a week off work I just decided to pull the trigger and booked appointments for four different venues over the following couple of weeks.

The Granary Estates was the first venue we looked at. We both liked the character and charm of the Flint Barn and how this seamlessly connected to the glass walkway that looks out on to the courtyard garden. I think the big moment was as we walked around the corner and saw the Granary Barn - I think both our jaws dropped to the floor! It was such an amazing space, with high ceilings, rustic beams, and an airy feel. We saw another couple of venues but kept comparing them back to the Granary Estates. There was always something that didn’t quite match up to the emotions we both got on that first visit to the Granary Estate; so the choice was obvious.

Predictably, I had a Pinterest board full of ideas and themes that I had put together over the couple of months following our engagement. One theme stuck out as clearly being an overall favourite. A mix of soft pinks and lavenders with touches of hessian and jute twine: the typical country rustic look. Hall & Co helped make this theme a reality with soft white drapes, fairy lights, and hessian table runners.

The Granary Estates prop shop had loads of items that compliment the barns perfectly including the tree stumps for the table centrepieces, the crates used to make a photo display, and the ladder for the table plan. I spent countless evenings gluing lace and twine to jars, printing invitations and stationary, and scouring Etsy to ensure everything matched perfectly.

We wanted to add a personal touch and do something that would break the initial awkward small talk on tables where not everyone knew each other. Calum came up with the idea of adding two lines onto the back of everyone’s place name - the first stating how that person knows the newlyweds and a second with a funny comment or quote that would need explaining to the rest of the table. This was harder than we originally thought, but it was so worth it. As we sat down for dinner, we carefully watched as one by one friends and family found them and had to explain theirs to the table, some stories more embarrassing than others!

 

FLOWERS

Clare Jones is one of the recommended suppliers for The Granary Estates. I checked out her Instagram account and fell in love with some of her creations. I told her the colours I wanted, emailed some pictures of things I had found and left the rest up to her.

I showed her a picture I had found on the Granary Estates website of some hanging flower spheres I liked, she laughed and said that the picture was actually of her own wedding a couple of years earlier. I think it was at that moment I knew we were on the same page and I could trust her to create beautiful but relaxed arrangements - she just ‘got it’!

My favourite pieces were the hanging flower spheres in the Granary Barn and also our gorgeous welcome arrangement at the door of the Flint Barn.

 

CATERING

We decided on Hall & Co for our catering as we felt the sample menus really suited our tastes. Canapes included slow braised beef rib croquette and cornbread with goats cheese and tomato jam. They were delicious, and people were fighting over who got the last ones. Luckily we didn’t have to worry about that as they saved a special tray reserved just for us, which was such a nice touch.

We decided to have a traditional sit down wedding breakfast and after much deliberation our menu consisted of cured salmon with horseradish creme fraiche to start, followed by slow braised pork belly with confit garlic mash with the obligatory crackling. We finished with salted caramel s'mores brownie. We received so many compliments from our guests on the quality of the food that Hall & Co produced.

 

PARTY TIME!

I spent five years in Scotland as a teenager and much preferred the ceilidhs to the discos. Although Calum is Scottish he had never actually been to one, so I had to really persuade him how much fun they were. It is such a good way to get everyone up and dancing. He eventually agreed and I found The Ceilidh Tree that were able to provide the ceilidh band and then also did a DJ set afterwards which gave us the best of both worlds.

It was so much fun! By the end no one cared if they were doing the right steps, we were all just enjoying flinging each other around and laughing while we did it. The evening went so quickly and I wish we had had double the time to dance!

 

WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY

We found Liam Smith online and loved his documentary style of photography. His pictures are beautifully shot and edited. They really stood out to us which is why we jumped at the opportunity to book him. Liam was so lovely and made us both feel at ease, at times we didn’t even realise he was there, but he managed to capture the day perfectly.

A couple of weeks after the wedding we received a slideshow that he had made out of some of our photographs. We relived the whole day again while watching it, the photographs had captured so many things that we had forgotten about or missed. The natural composition of them really enables you to appreciate how much everyone was enjoying themselves and have provided us with moments of our special day that we can keep forever.

 

TAKE MY ADVICE...

Your wedding day is probably the only day in your life where every single person you have ever loved, family and friends, are all together in one room - all there to celebrate you as a couple and the start of your new adventure as husband and wife.

I found the thought quite overwhelming, but it was simply just amazing. The day goes by so quickly, before you know it, it’s time to say goodbye to everyone. I feel for that reason it’s really important to be able to enjoy it and remember that if something isn’t quite how you imagined or doesn’t quite go to plan, only you know about it, and to be honest it really doesn’t matter!

Once you wake up on the day, let everyone else take the reins and just enjoy spending time with all the people most important to you.

Time to Celebrate!

Have you got a special birthday, family celebration

or christening coming up?

At The Granary Estates, we admit it… we’re primarily known for being a wedding venue, but we do accommodate for a whole host of other events under our timber beams!

This summer, we have some Friday dates still waiting to be snapped up and we think they could be the perfect opportunity for you to have your family celebration, birthday boogie, anniversary dinner or even a space to gather after your little ones christening…

Image - Daniel Ackerley Photography

With our fully licensed bar, exclusive space and chequerboard dance floor, the barns is the ultimate venue to celebrate all occasions with loved ones and friends.

We can create catering packages to suit your requirements and will work with you to make the event one to remember! Priding ourselves on our flexibility, you can do as much or as little to the barns as you’d like. It really is up to you!

The exterior grounds are stunning and a great space to utilise during the summer months :)

Thank you for your help in providing us with an excellent night of fun! We loved it and have had so much great feedback from our guests about how beautiful the venue was!
— Roger Varian, Birthday Celebration
Many thanks to you and all of your staff for looking after us so well. We were able to relax and enjoy the party enormously knowing that you had organised everything so well. We have recieved many compliments on the Granary Barns and the service priovided.
— Mr Ellis, Anniversary Lunch

Image - Lina & Tom

We can also recommend a number of evening entertainment options including DJ packages and live bands to keep the party going :)

If our award-winning Barns appeal to you and you’d like to find out more, please feel free to get in touch, we’d love to speak with you!

You can speak with our Events Team via one of the following:

Call us: 01638 731230

Send an email: info@thegranaryestates.co.uk

We look forward to speaking with you and have a wonderful weekend!

Meet The Experts: Dreamwave

Our custom lighting and sound production is fully equipped to deliver design and concept installation of the highest quality.
— CARINA, Dreamwave Events

Hello Dreamwave! Tell us a bit about yourselves…

CARINA: Paul and Dave, already both experienced, technically skilled DJs, joined forces to form Dreamwave Events back in 2009.  They have always been about connecting with the clients, combining a first-class service from the initial contact through to the evening of the event and providing a bespoke performance by understanding their audience. 

Image - Stuart Deadman Photography

Image - Stuart Deadman Photography

Image - Pete Denness Photography

Image - Pete Denness Photography

How has the company grown in the past few years?

CARINA: We are celebrating our 10-year anniversary this year!  With the combined motive power, knowledge and professionalism of the team, Dreamwave Events has grown year on year.  By staying true to our roots providing a service to clients that is of the highest standard and quality, we have a set of DJs whose technical skills and their ability to read the crowd, guarantees a personalised entertainment experience.

We are so proud of the fantastic team we have today from our dedicated office staff and knowledgeable crew to our hand-picked highly skilled DJ’s whose artistic flare and dynamic style can only mean your evening party will be a complete hit!

We are always looking for new and innovative ways to move forward with the business and have moved into providing collaborations with artists like Sister Sax and most recently, DJ Destruction.

Image - Stuart Deadman Photography

Image - Stuart Deadman Photography

Tell us a bit more about your exciting new venture with DJ Destruction…

CARINA: We are always looking at innovative ways to move forward.  DJ Destruction is a world class scratch DJ who will perform for a one hour set during your evening party when booked alongside our evening DJ package.   We have seen him perform and he is absolutely awesome! He completely immerses himself into his high-octane sets.  You can check my blog post, that has a short clip of DJ Destruction performing.

 

If you could give a piece of advice to your couple planning their wedding, what would it be?

CARINA: This sounds completely biased – but I would say, don’t underestimate the evening party.  From experience, I would say a lot of couples do not put it on their priority list, yet it is a large chunk of your day and the part that you and you guests get to let your hair down and have fun! 

On this note, make sure it’s the party you envisage with the music and entertainment you want. 

Image - Pete Denness Photography

Image - Pete Denness Photography

Image - Matt Wing Photography

Image - Matt Wing Photography

What is one of your favourite memories at the barns?

PAUL: One of my fondest memories was providing our Cocktail DJ service during a wedding drinks reception a couple of years ago on very warm summers day!  We can play any type of background music during this service from modern acoustic tracks to chilled jazz but on this occasion,  it was funky house / Ibiza classics! It was amazing guests where dancing along on the lawn whilst enjoying drinks and canapes, the atmosphere was perfect and much like being in Ibiza right there and then!

Image - Pete Denness Photography

Image - Pete Denness Photography

Image - Matt Wing Photography

Image - Matt Wing Photography

What areas of the business have changed since you started? What trends do you see making their way through in 2019?

CARINA: We find when it comes to entertainment, that couples are always looking for something new to blow away their guests.  We have seen many old school garage DJ’s performing and DJ’s jamming alongside saxophonists – now it’s time to make way for DJ Destruction! 😊


What other events can you/do you do?

CARINA: There are two sides to Dreamwave Events;  Dreamwave DJ’s and Dreamwave Lighting.  And we can cater for anything from an intimate private function to a huge corporate gala!  Our specialist team is experienced and knowledgeable.  I have already talked about our DJ side thoroughly – but our custom lighting and sound production is fully equipped to deliver design and concept installation of the highest quality.

Image - Dreamwave Events

Image - Dreamwave Events