NATHALIE + KIERON
Last autumn, we had the absolute pleasure of welcoming Nathalie, Kieron and their loved ones to their wonderful November nuptials.
With a strong vision of how they wanted their big day to look, the future Mr & Mrs Bates had lots of personal touches from fairy lights, to sparklers and of course, their amazing personalised neon sign (scroll down…!).
Here we take a look back at their special day, captured by the talented Three Flowers Photography… some serious wedding inspo coming your way!
PICKING THE DRESS
I knew I wanted a fitted fishtail dress but I was convinced I wanted sleeves with it being November. I thought I’d need to be warm. I tried on A-LOT of dresses (all with sleeves) only to end up choosing one without. When you try them on in the shop they are all in larger sizes usually so even when they pin them to fit the mesh of the arms, it still looks baggy and it was hard for me to imagine it being smaller although I’m sure it would have looked lovely. I felt far too covered up in all of them so ended up with a sleeveless with mesh that made it appear strapless.
Confetti and Lace in Lakeside, Essex became my second home I must have tried nearly all of the dresses and it’s a very big shop! I loved the atmosphere in there and always felt very relaxed compared to other stores I went to. It was by far my favourite and I would definitely recommend it.
I didn’t expect to have that ‘wow’ moment, but I did feel quite emotional the first time I tried my dress on. I was just with my mum and was getting really fed up with the whole process by this point, but it felt so special that I did well up slightly. The back and the train are what did it for me, which is why I didn’t have a veil because I didn’t want to cover that part of the dress up.
SUITED & BOOTED
Kieron got his suit from Anthony’s in Billericay and he designed his suit from scratch. He doesn’t really wear suits so he wanted to get a nice one that he could wear in the future. I went with him because I was scared of what he’d pick (there was a lot of talk about larger checks and out there patterns) but I liked the ones he chose.
He picked a navy check and a very lary lining, and the other boys just had navy so he stood out but not too much. The boys clubbed together and bought him a pocket watch so they all had matching ones with their names engraved on them which was really nice and they looked great with the waistcoats in the photos.
THE BRIDE SQUAD
I had three bridesmaids; my sister and my two best friends. The dresses were the first and easiest thing I sorted out. We got engaged just before Christmas, so I nabbed the dresses in the sale from early in January. I knew I wanted a champagne gold colour and found them online, they were ISSA at House Of Fraser and were in the sale for £40 from £120. I grabbed about 6 different sizes so they had options and got the girls to try them on, luckily they all liked them!
We all got ready together in the morning which was nice. It was stressful at times with 4 people doing their own hair and make up in one room.. but was nice to share the morning with them and make memories.
Half way through me and Kieron having our photos taken, the girls appeared with glasses and a bottle of prosecco which I was very happy to see as I’d been outside for about 40 mins and was freezing.
THE VENUE & DECORATION
We knew we wanted a barn, but I didn’t want a classic Tudor-style with dark beams so that limited the options. When I saw The Granary Estates on Instagram I fell in love with the flint walls and light feel. We spent a weekend driving around looking at venues, we saw about 15 barns in one weekend and The Granary was the last one we saw, much to Kieron’s annoyance! When we turned the corner and saw the big barn I looked at Kieron and said this is the one! Luckily, he didn’t disagree.
We loved the fairy lights and the drapes in the main barn so Hall & Co did those for us. Other than that, we kept it very simple letting the flint and grandness of the barns speak for themselves and opted for greenery instead of flowers to keep costs down but also because I liked the simplicity of the greenery and the lights.
My mum managed to convince friends to let her chop up their gardens for greenery and bought some extra bits a few days before from our local flower stall, where she also bought the flowers for our bouquets which she made herself. I was very impressed, she’s very arty like me which came in useful.
I wasn’t as nervous as I thought I would be standing waiting in the corridor. I’d had a few glasses of prosecco for dutch courage, but when the doors opened and I saw everyone looking at me I panicked and basically dragged my dad down the aisle as quickly as I could. I remember blinking loads while walking down, thinking don’t cry, don’t cry, your make-up! In one photo you can see a pool of tears in my eyes but luckily they didn’t spill out!
Once I was at the front with Kieron I felt less nervous but found myself squeezing his hand and fidgeting from one foot to the other. I was willing it to hurry up as I’m not good with attention being on me (hard to avoid on your wedding day) so I don’t remember much of the ceremony. My sister read a poem which she’d written about us which was amazing and nearly got me.
We used Crown Catering Cambridge and they were amazing, we’ve had so many compliments on the food! Mainly the butternut squash and chilli soup which really helped warm us up after being outside for photos. Then we kept it simple with roast chicken and had our wedding cake (lemon drizzle) as dessert so we cut the cake after the main course and did the speeches while they cut it up in the kitchen. It worked really well as then the cake didn’t go to waste and we still have loads left in our freezer!
We only had 20 or so more guests in the evening. Kieron wanted a band but the budget didn’t allow for it so we booked the Granary DJ package. We were a little worried as we had never met or heard them DJ, but we used their online system to pick out our ‘must play songs’, all of which he played and the rest of the music was amazing. The dance floor was packed the whole night!
We didn’t really have ‘a song’ so we found it quite hard to pick our first dance song, however I loved our choice and the confetti cannons were great, although it did all go in my mouth! I enjoyed the party so much more than I thought and after the first dance was over, I really relaxed. I had a bit more to drink and just felt like we were on a night out with our friends, who also didn’t leave the dancefloor!
Charlotte from Three Flowers Photography was our photographer and, along with her second shooter, was amazing! We loved them.
We had a tight schedule for photos as in November the sunset is much earlier, but they were on it.
I saw that Charlotte had shot a November wedding at the Granary the year before and loved her style. She knew the venue and even though it wasn’t summer, the photos looked amazing. We’re SO happy with how they turned out and were so lucky with the weather and the sunset!
We had the photos 5 weeks after the big day, although she sent me a few early so I could get them printed for the family’s Christmas presents. I haven’t made a book yet but it’s on my list of things to do.
We definitely have some favourites, we are also lucky that some of the guests had good cameras too so they captured some really nice natural moments too.
TAKE MY ADVICE...
It’s very cheesy but I just remember being so happy, surrounded by everyone you love, I thought it would be daunting, but it was great. And all the things you think will bother you or that you’ll worry about on the day, don’t, you just don’t care about anything else that’s happening. And dancing, we spent what felt like the whole night on the dancefloor.
One of Kieron’s groomsmen filmed the whole day on his Go-Pro which was so nice to have because we couldn’t really remember so much, it really does go by in a blur. We watched the ceremony and speeches a few days later and saw so many bits we’d missed.
Also trust the staff - they are doing it every week so they know better than you do. I printed out a master list of the day and gave it to the staff and also my mum, the bridesmaids and groomsmen so everyone knew what was happening and we could relax.