The Wedding of Zoe & Oliver
26th February 2022
A traditional countryside wedding with natural, rustic charm was the order of the day for this travel-loving couple
Following their engagement atop the dizzying heights of the tallest building in the world, our travel-loving couple Zoe & Oliver set about searching for the perfect countryside barn venue: featuring tons of rustic charm, wooden beams and an open plan feel.
As they stepped over the threshold into Tower Hill Barns, they just knew they’d found ‘the one’ and we were ecstatic to help them plan a magical Christmas-themed winter wedding! And after numerous setbacks, courtesy of COVID-19, Zoe & Oliver were relieved to finally tie the knot in their long-awaited, emotional indoor ceremony in the winter.
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The couple agreed that they’d like a countryside barn venue that had rustic charm, wooden beams and an open-plan feel. (Surely not too much to ask?) A few google searches later, after stumbling across the Tower Hill Barns website, they had booked to attend an Open Day – and promptly fell in love with the venue as soon as they stepped over the threshold into our light and airy, open plan main reception area complete with its overall rustic vibe and plenty of wooden beams. It was everything they pictured for their wedding day and they were SOLD!
Oliver reached new heights with his proposal, heading to Dubai and choosing the top of the tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa to pop the question – gotta have a phenomenal view for that first ring photo!
Wedding planning with the help of our wedding coordinator Jordan was really enjoyable to start with but the process did become more stressful towards the end as we had the uncertainty of COVID to navigate throughout all of our wedding planning which really didn’t help! In the end, it was all worth it as everything came together perfectly and looking back, we wouldn’t change a thing!
As part of the planning process, Zoe made lots of lists and did the majority of the planning with the help of her mum. Towards the end, Oliver became the chief ‘decision maker’ as well as being in charge of the financial spreadsheet (it’s no mean feat to reign in a bride and her mother!)
Overall the wedding planning took two and a half years (thanks COVID-19), we set the original date for December 2020 as we wanted a Christmassy winter wedding – however, we all know what happened there – and our big day eventually came to fruition on 26/02/2022 (but they do say good things come to those who wait!)
Waking up to the best day of their lives…
The groom and his family stayed overnight in one of our recommended local accommodation providers, by Vale of Llangollen cottages. Here they got suited & booted and headed to THB around 11:30 am, to prevent the groom from wearing a hole in the floor with his nervous pacing!
I (Zoe) stayed at a local hotel with my family the night before the wedding and travelled to THB in the morning with my bridal party to get ready in the lush onsite Bridal Prep Room (sorry boys…) We had plenty of time to relax and revel in the excitement ahead of the wedding, while enjoying the beautiful breakfast banquet which was served in the snug area for us to pick at while we were getting ready. The order of the morning was to stay as chill as possible and take it easy (and of course, a little prosecco helped along the way!)
As chill as I was, I couldn’t help a few sneaky trips downstairs to check that the preparations were all going smoothly – I needn’t have worried as I have to admit, the staff at THB are AMAZING at what they do and had it all in hand from start to finish!
The long-awaited wedding ceremony
Zoe & Oliver tied the knot in the Old Barn in an intimate indoor ceremony in front of 80 of their nearest and dearest. The atmosphere was one of emotional relief to finally be seeing the couple tie the knot after numerous setbacks in the wake of COVID-19 restrictions. Zoe followed her teal-clad bridesmaids down the aisle looking beautiful in an ivory ruched satin ball gown from Lou Lou Bridal with a man on each arm (Father on one side & Step-Father on the other), to ‘Seasons of Love’ from Rent the musical. Her little brother followed closely behind, lovingly carrying the train, his cheeky face beaming with pride for his big sister (refer to photographs for heart-melting cuteness).
We were so swept up in the moment that we can’t fully remember the ceremony, I think I (Zoe) began to cry while saying my vows at one point, after waiting for so long, I think it only then sunk in that it was *FINALLY* happening! Our guests commented that it was quite an emotional ceremony and I’m so grateful that it was captured by a professional videographer. I can’t wait to go back and relive the moment fully! The registrars were also amazing, they really settled the congregation and made the ceremony more personal by bringing humour and light-heartedness to the proceedings!
The Wedding Theme
Our original wedding date was set for December 2020, and we had always planned it to be a winter wedding with little christmassy touches here and there. Of course, COVID-19 had other ideas and our eventual wedding took place in February 2022. We decided to dial down the Christmas elements a little, but still wanted a rustic wedding with lots of blue as it’s our favourite colour! We had a honeymoon in the Maldives in our sights (you only live once!) and couldn’t wait to be stepping out onto its white sandy beaches and looking out over the turquoise blue seas. So, we decided to bring a little bit of the Maldives to our guests by using it as inspiration for our colour palette!
Sally at Tab Nab Cakes created a delicious three-tier teal blue & ivory cake, with flecks of gold leaf and an accompanying hexagonal golden cake arch for that extra decadent touch, which represented our colour palette and theme perfectly. It went down a treat too! Vivid Floral Design did a wonderful job of making the venue even more beautiful and complimenting our colour palette with simple, elegant floral arrangements featuring ivory blooms and eucalyptus & green foliage.
The ivory floral arch created the perfect backdrop for our wedding cake and the beautiful unique table centrepieces created from miniature white cherry blossom trees and dainty glass baubles were simply extraordinary. Bridesmaids wore teal blue floor-length dresses accessorised with ivory fur shrugs and ivory floral hoops with green eucalyptus to compliment the bride’s bouquet. Not to be left out, the Groomsmen looked equally as classy in matching grey/blue tweed suits, accented with a pop of teal and ivory floral buttonholes.
Christmas Dinner in February
Is there anything better?!
We gladly took Tower Hill Barns up on their invitation to attend a Food Taster experience ahead of our wedding day (who wouldn’t?!). But we weren’t prepared for it to be quite so incredible! The service, the food and of course – the wine, were DIVINE! It was very helpful when it came to deciding our wedding menu as well as being a wonderful teaser for our big day!
On the day, Oliver and I put together a playlist of songs we love to accompany the wedding breakfast and set the mood. We made sure to cater for everyone with canapés in a mixture of fish, meat & veg – they were all equally delicious! And as we were originally planning a christmas wedding, we were keen to have a traditional Christmas dinner as our main course. We decided to bring a little bit of Christmas into our eventual wedding in February 2022 by sticking with this choice and of course, in true Tower Hill Barns fashion, they said this was absolutely fine and catered to our every need. In the end, it felt like a wonderful way to pay homage to our wedding journey and the disruptions we faced along the way!
Candid winter wedding photography
We met Richard Miller at THB’s open day. We loved his work and felt he would be great at capturing the candid, relaxed, natural, fun, easy, fresh style we were going for – so that made one of our decisions very easy at least! Rich had the wonderful idea of capturing our first dance from above by taking pictures from the barn’s snug area above the dance floor. It was perfect, the images capture our guests encircled around us as well as the dance itself beautifully and look awesome! Another standout moment for us was our puppy joining us for a family photo in the grounds and my dress getting mucky! It was lovely to have Rich there to capture this moment for us in style and we will treasure it forever!
Zoe and Oliver love travelling and set the bar high with their proposal location. So of course, they had to really pull it out of the bag for the honeymoon – the couple jetted off to You & Me by Cocoon in the Maldives which they assured us was an out-of-this-world, paradise on earth! (We’re not jealous at all)
Photography by Richard Miller Photography
Florist: Vivid Floral Design | Cake: Tab Nab Cakes | Videographer: Joel Parry Wedding Films | Bridal Boutique: Blush Boutique, Uppermill Oldham | Dress Designer: Lou Lou Bridal | Wedding Hair: Carly Mcdonald | Wedding Makeup: Absolutely Flawless Hair & Makeup | Venue Styling: Uplit Event Hire | Photobooth: Jolly Good Photo Company | Cheeses: Churchmouse Cheeses | Music & Entertainment: Entertainment Nation, Wandering Wings | Suits: Brocton Tweed Suit, Peter Posh