Cotswolds Marquee weddings Church weddings

Wedding of the Week: Holly Delaney and Christopher Marsh

13 Nov 2017

Holly Delaney and Christopher Marsh's marquee wedding featured several personal touches - from the flowers to the favours and tuk tuk transport to boot

How did you meet?

We met online and both lived in South West London.

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Tell us about the proposal.

Chris proposed to me during an incredible trip to India. We were staying at the beautiful Rambagh Palace in Jaipur. We went for an early evening walk around the grounds and he proposed in the central courtyard of the hotel which was lit by candles. We were met with champagne and they put on a special dinner for us with our own private menu. It was just perfect.

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What was the theme for the day, and did you have a colour scheme?

We didn’t really have a theme, however my sister’s bridesmaid dress was a beautiful silver blue which we matched the ties and pocket squares too. The colour theme for the flowers was cream and blush pink with silver and green foliage.

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What venue did you choose and why did you choose it?

We chose Norton Grounds, a new wedding venue in the Cotswolds near Chipping Campden, for our wedding reception. We wanted somewhere close to Mickleton, a small village near Chipping Campden, where my parents live and we were getting married in St Lawrence Church, Mickleton. We also wanted somewhere that we could stay on site. We had exclusive hire of the Norton Grounds which includes two beautifully decorated barns and rooms within the Farmhouse. It was the perfect setting and so great to have family and friends staying so close by.

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When did you know when you’d found ‘the’ dress?

I had visited a number of designer shops in London, but none of them made me feel special. My dress actually involved two dresses (Mikella By Paloma Blanca) which I purchased from the incredible White Boutique, Park Street Leamington Spa. Both Emma and Katie helped me create a dress beyond my wildest dreams. I loved two dresses, one which was very fitted and the other one had a full skirt. We came up with the idea of putting the full skirt over the fitted dress, which I wore for the church service and then in the evening, I removed the skirt and was able unveil the beautiful fitted dress.

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What did the bridesmaids wear?

I kept it simple and had one bridesmaid, my sister. She wore a Ghost Salma Dress.

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Where did you find your suits?

We had a best man based in Cornwall, ushers in Scotland and other members of the wedding party all over the country, so we chose to go with Moss Bros for ease. This however didn’t go to plan... When we collected the suits on the Thursday before the wedding, they had arrived with the wrong trousers, all the waistcoats were different, the ties didn’t match the pocket squares… it was a last-minute panic, one we really didn’t need two days before the wedding and resulted in a same day courier dropping the replacement ties at The Kings Arms pub in Mickleton at 7.30pm the night before the wedding where we had arranged a big family dinner.

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Did you hire a wedding planner? How did they help?

The incredible Anna Byass from Golden Pineapple Hospitality made the whole process so easy. We had no idea where to start with a marquee wedding, but she was able to advise on so many things which I hadn’t even considered. I really can’t recommend her enough.

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Tell us about your floral arrangements.

We used Elizabeth’s Flowers, an independent florist near Stratford upon Avon. Beth was so helpful; we had a rough idea from looking at Pinterest at the sort of style we like but she was able to advise on the perfect combination of flowers. My bouquet and my sister’s bouquet combined ivory and blush roses with dusty grey eucalyptus foliage arranged in a neat but slightly relaxed design. The men wore slender cream rose buttonholes with a small amount of eucalyptus foliage, and pearl colour headed pins to fasten to lapel.

In the church, we had two alter arrangements on pedestals; these included: blush pink roses, pale blue delphium, ivory and pink two-tone hydrangeas, cream spray roses, cream larkspur and dusty grey eucalyptus foliage with ivy trailing down. We did alternate pew ends in ivory hydrangeas with long blush pink satin ribbon. Simple but beautiful.

At the doorway of the church we had vintage style metal urns which included baby blue delphinium, blush pink roses, white astilbee, cream spray roses, cream larkspur and lots of foliage - dusty grey eucalyptus and alchamilla mollis.

Our table centrepieces were beautiful. Originally, we thought we might go for short centrepieces but I was so pleased in the end we went for tall ones, as it gave the height required in a marquee. These continued in the same theme and included blush pink roses, pale blue delphinium, ivory/pink two-tone hydrangeas, cream spray roses, cream larkspur and dusty grey eucalyptus foliage. Soft ruscus trailed around stem.

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Often the aspect that makes a wedding original to the couple is the detail – tell us about the details of the day.

Chris and his best man, Phil, had both taken part in the Rickshaw Run through India a few years earlier. Chris and I absolutely love India (where we got engaged) and he is obsessed with rickshaws/tuk tuks, so I arranged for the Big Yellow Tuk Tuk to take them both to the church as a surprise. They loved it and was great for having photographs next to.

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How did you feel as you walked down the aisle?

During our rehearsal on the Friday (the day before the wedding) I felt incredibly nervous but on the day, I was completely relaxed and loved every minute. I was conscious to take my time when walking down the aisle and imake t a moment I will treasure for the rest of my life. I would say to any bride and groom just enjoy the ceremony; while the vows you say are serious, make sure you enjoy it. You can probably see from our photos we laughed throughout the ceremony and this made it enjoyable for everyone else.

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What was your most memorable moment?

All those things that everyone tells you are so true (I didn’t believe it until it happened) but the day went by in a flash. I’m not sure I can pinpoint the most memorable moment, as all of it was just the best day ever. We arrived at the venue before everyone else and took a few moments for ourselves to take it all in, which I would highly recommend.

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What was the most challenging aspect of planning this wedding?

The most challenging aspect was the logistics. We live in London and the wedding was in the Cotswolds so we had a lot of weekend trips back and forth meeting with suppliers and making arrangements. There are so many things to consider and planning is key to the day running smoothly. I took the week off before the wedding and I was so glad I did, it allowed me to get a lot of things sorted in advance of our wedding weekend.

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What was the most important investment for you?

Any wedding is a big investment but one which will be a memory forever. We invested a lot of time in making the wedding personal. We made our own wedding favours, which was personalised bottles of homemade sloe gin, we also had our own ‘I Do Brew’. We both love good food and drink and this was very important to us. We also used local Cotswold Gin for our welcome drinks (we are both big gin fans).

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What song did you choose for your first dance, and why?

You Can Go On Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac, a rather strange choice you might think but our favourite song and everyone joined us on the dancefloor.

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Did you have any evening entertainment?

We had Tom Barnwell & Audio Chaff’s. They were absolutely amazing, we really can’t recommend them enough. We have had so many complements on how fantastic they were, they had everyone up dancing (something a lot of bands can’t do).

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Tell us about your wedding cake.

We had both a wedding cake and a cheese cake. We went for a naked style cake which was made by my wonderful mum.The cheese cake was a huge success and was served in the evening and then the following day (Sunday). Rather than having evening guests, we decided to hold a light lunch for everyone on the Sunday. We ended up with 120 people; we were so pleased we did this, it was lovely to see everyone the following day and reminisce about the previous day.

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If you could go back and change anything, what would it be?

We wouldn’t change a thing, it was perfect and we were loved every minute. We would rather not have had the suit drama.

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Was there anything you wish you’d known before?

Planning a wedding is a real learning curve and one I really couldn’t have managed without all the help and support from both Anna (of Golden Pineapple Hospitality) and all of our family and friends.

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Where did you go on honeymoon?

We had 120 people back for lunch on the Sunday, the day after our wedding rather than having evening guests so we went on honeymoon on the Monday.  We went to Sardinia and had the most incredible time. We were was glad we went straight after our wedding weekend as we were absolutely exhausted and needed some time to relax.

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Do you have any advice for couples in the planning stages?

Be realistic with your budget and try and stick to it. It’s very easy to blow the budget but will it really make your day any more special? Also, remember it is your day, so do what you both want. It doesn’t matter if it doesn’t follow tradition or family members don’t approve, this is your day not theirs.

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Get the look:

Photography: James Fear, http://fearphotography.com/
Floristry: Elizabeth’s Flowers, www.elizabethsflowers.co.uk
Band: Tom Barnwell & Audio Chaffs, www.tombarnwell.com/audiochaff
Event/ wedding planner: Anna Byass of Golden Pineapple Hospitality, http://goldenpineapplehospitality.co.uk/
Venue: Norton Grounds, www.nortongrounds.com

For more real wedding inspiration in the Cotswolds, pick up the latest edition of Cotswold Bride magazine