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  • Writer's pictureDodmoor House

Beth and Darren's Autumn Wedding

Updated: Jan 6, 2020

How we met...

Believe it or not, we actually met at a wedding! I was a bridesmaid and Darren was the usher, back in December 2013. We had a fabulous day and with Darren’s birthday being the next day, we partied hard! We then didn’t see each other until five months later, where we were set up by our friends (and my sister!). We swapped numbers, became the best of friends, and the rest is history. It’s true to say that when you meet “the one”, you get that fuzzy feeling inside, as if you know something special is about to happen. I can honestly say I have had that feeling every day since. As we got to know each other, we learnt that our grandparents had worked together many years ago, and our mums went to school together. It’s as if fate brought us together, so our marriage is really the icing on the cake.

The proposal...

We were in The Lake District enjoying our first holiday as a family, six months after our beautiful little girl arrived. We had been busy exploring, and Darren had previously promised to find me a waterfall (after an unsuccessful trip in The Peak District the year before). We parked up, popped on our wellies and began walking up a beautiful little hidden stream in Ambleside. Darren kept trying to get ahead of me, but I kept pulling him back as I had the baby in the carrier and thought he was running off to explore… little did I know he was actually trying to pin photos of us up in the trees (Sorry Darren!). As we reached the top of the hill, this little stream turned in the most beautiful, picturesque waterfall and as I turned around, Darren got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife. It was magical - I was completely lost for words and we both cried. We were both so happy that our little girl, Ivy, could be there and it really was the most perfect moment.

The dress...

The dress was perfect! Completely not what I thought I would choose yet everything I wanted. I wanted something a little bit different, but not over the top. We met a lovely lady called Elizabeth Ayres at a wedding show, and discovered she owned a little boutique that she runs from home. The dresses were beautiful, bohemian style and the designer is called “Rembo Styling”. As soon as I tried on my gown, I knew it was the one. So beautiful, different and comfortable. My advice to anyone looking for their dress, never underestimate the importance of comfort!

Our favourite part of the day...

The entire day was perfect, but I think my favourite part of the day was just after the ceremony at the drinks reception. Walking out of the ceremony barn as husband and wife, leaving all the nerves behind you and knowing you can just enjoy the rest of the day with everyone that you love. It was perfect.

I remember taking the glass of Prosecco from Claire and her saying “you did it!"... And I just thought to myself, yeah we did. We are married, husband and wife for the rest of our lives. That’s my happily ever after right there, and everybody we love was able to witness it within the most perfect setting. It’s overwhelming and magical all at the same time. And let’s be honest, it’s a fabulous party from that moment onwards, and who doesn’t love a good knees up!

The idea we felt really worked on the day...

As parents ourselves, we know how stressful events can be if your children are bored, so we tried to do as much as we could to ensure the children were entertained and having fun, whilst still being involved within the wedding. We had a book corner at the back of the ceremony, each child had their very own goody bag as their table favour, and there were several toy/play areas in the barns through the rest of the day. We really felt that if the children relaxed, the parents would too, and it really worked. All the team at Dodmoor were amazing in helping this work, and even chicken wired off the exits so that the children could run around and make the most of the beautiful autumn weather, without parents worrying about where they were.

Where we feel our budget was well spent...

We tried to make a lot of things ourselves including the place settings, gift bags, pew ends etc., which meant that our budget could be focused elsewhere. We chose one of the Dodmoor drinks packages which worked fabulously, and so many people commented on how nice it was to have a selection of drinks available through the day. Our DJ was also fab, we used 1Entertainments who it turned out had DJ’d at the wedding where we met! Being able to choose your own playlist is such a good idea and the dance floor was never empty. The tunes just kept coming and it really was the best party I have ever been to.

Finally, if we could give a tip to other couples...

Get married at Dodmoor! The venue is stunning, the regular open evenings are a Godsend, and the staff are completely faultless. We had so many comments from guests about how effortlessly beautiful the barns are and how incredibly helpful the staff were. I could not have planned half of what I did without Claire and the team to help me, they really do everything they can to ensure your day is perfect. I honestly cannot thank the team enough for making all of our wedding dreams come true and there is not a single detail that I would change.

Special thanks to Beth and Darren for sharing their story, and to Aaron Collett Photography for the photos.

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