Wedding at Clovelly
Amber and Warren stole away to the coast of North Devon for a whimsical and wonderful wedding by the sea Five years after they first met – “and a couple of drunken kisses along the way” – Amber and Warren finally got together when he visited her in Dawlish for their first proper date. “I fell in love with him the same day,” she reveals. “He proposed two years later in Cuba, having snuck us onto the balcony of the Presidential Suite at the Hotel Nacional whilst wearing a Che Guevara outfit. He said this was his revolution!”
Armed with the simple desire to be married outside by the sea, the couple chose Clovelly as their venue, obtaining a special licence to stage their ceremony in Clovelly Court Gardens. “We didn’t have a theme, except to be a little whimsical, bohemian, vintage and magical,” says Amber.
In keeping with the vibe, Amber accessorised her beautiful bespoke gown and veil with an antique gold brooch from her Dad, a gold Grecian goddess crown and gold shoes, while her hair was scattered with gold blooms and gypsophila. “My bouquet was rich dark vintage reds and purples to match my red lips and nails,” she says. Her ten bridesmaids wore cream crochet dresses and white flower haloes to match their white bouquets.
The dreamy scene was brimming with DIY touches. “We handmade all the invites, orders of ceremony, menus and table cards with our own artwork and handmade dried flower confetti, decorations and favours,” says Amber.
Taking their vows beneath a floral arch, the eclectic ceremony featured Amber walking down the aisle to Led Zeppelin’s ‘Going to California’, local seamen singing sea shanty songs prior to the vows and everyone singing ‘The Wild Rover’. An accordionist provided the soundtrack to the reception while The Majestic lent some reggae grooves to the evening. “We were also joined by some of Clovelly’s own traditional donkeys who wore white flowers especially for the occasion!” adds Amber.
A stretch tent marquee on the cliffs overlooking Clovelly provided the reception and evening party space, which not only featured stunning sea views, but a special vintage sofa seating area with a life-size Barack Obama model “so you could share a beer with the President”, alongside flamingo props and a bucket of sparklers.
Dinner comprised crab madeleine to start, game pie for the main course and the culinary pièce de résistance – the wedding cake – “a giant gooey chocolate cake one metre wide based on the one Bruce Bogtrotter has to eat in Roald Dahl’s ‘Matilda’!”
Looking back at their character-filled day, Warren is armed with advice for nearly wed couples. “If you have an outdoor wedding make sure you have a back up plan. Also, make sure you have enough hands on deck and, if you can, a coordinator for the day, otherwise you'll spend the night before and morning of the big day running around like a headless chicken,” he warns.
“Don’t let people tell you something can’t or shouldn’t be done, as all your dreams can be realised with a little bit of imagination, creativity and perseverance,” concludes Amber.
Photography Heidi White www.heidiwhitephotography.com
Venue Clovelly www.clovelly.co.uk
Marquee Earth Village Events www.earthvillageevents.co.uk
Dress Wedding Workshop www.weddingworkshop.co.uk
Groomsmens’ outfits Paul Smith suits from Moss Bros Hire www.moss.co.uk
Cake Mrs M’s Cakes www.mrsmscakes.co.uk
Flowers The Secret Garden www.secretgardenflorists.co.uk
Entertainment The Majestic www.majesticlive.co.uk
Copyright Wed magazine 2016