Wedding at Coombe Trenchard, Devon
The Story of Us
From skulls to sci-fi, Nikki and Ant filled their relaxed garden party wedding with the things they loveNikki and Ant instantly connected while at the Isle of Wight Festival in 2006. "We walked back to the tents together and once we got talking we just couldn't stop as we had so much in common!" recalls Nikki. "We ended up spending the entire weekend together - and that was pretty much it!"
Ant's Boxing Day proposal took place during a camel trek into the Sahara while on holiday in Morocco nine years later, and was followed by a wedding as idiosyncratic as their love story.
Armed with the desire to "invite all our friends and family down to Devon for a relaxed wedding weekend, Coombe Trenchard just seemed to lend itself perfectly to our idea of a relaxed garden party atmosphere and gave lots of scope to do our own thing", explains Nikki, who is the creative talent behind styling and stationery company, Knots & Kisses.
Taking the renovations of their new Torquay townhouse as inspiration, the scheme incorporated Nikki's love of cafe au lait dahlias and dark pink-red peonies with blush, navy, ivory and a base of dark green foliage, tweed and dark wood, creating a fabulously rustic feel.
"We love taxidermy and animal skulls and have a couple in our house as decor so decided to use a subtle skull motif throughout," says Nikki, whose industry contacts helped provide the stunning array of furniture, props and floristry.
There was also a nod to their "geeky" passion for music, film and books, with invitations featuring designs from 'The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy' - an extract of which was read out during the ceremony, along with a "funny and strange poem with a really beautiful emotional ending" by Neil Gaiman.
The terraces of Coombe Trenchard were awash with eye-catching features such as a popcorn bar and dessert area adorned with skulls and flowers, with their show-stopping semi-naked cake taking centre stage.
The afternoon garden party morphed into an evening reception of pizza, photo booth fun (which was designed from scratch by Ant and can now be hired from Knots & Kisses), and Nikki and Ant's poignant first dance to 'Everlong' by Foo Fighters - one of the bands that were playing at the festival where they first met.
"We both had such an amazing day," reflects Nikki of their eclectic, crowd-pleasing day. "Our guests' faces, the amazing weather, all the hugs and laughter, the space hopper races, lots of dancing... But we both agree that the very best part of the day was our first look when I walked down the staircase. We didn't realise how emotional that would be!"
"Think about the day you want and try and stick as closely as possible to that original vision," she advises other couples just as keen to achieve their own personalised event. "You will have a much better day if you aren't forcing yourselves to do things you don't want to!"
Photography Clare Kinchin Photography clarekinchinphotography.co.uk
Venue Coombe Trenchard coombetrenchard.co.uk
Dress Needle & Thread needleandthread.com
Alterations Abide Maids abidemaids.co.uk
Faux fur cape Blanche in the Brambles blancheinthebrambles.co.uk
Shoes Rachel Simpson rachelsimpsonshoes.co.uk
Groom's outfit The Vintage Suit Hire Company vintagesuithire.co.uk
Tie, braces & pocket square Mrs Bow Tie mrsbowtie.com
Hair & make-up Giselle from Event Studios theeventstudios.co.uk
Hair accessories Kye Tew Jewellery kyetewjewellery.co.uk
Flowers Brompton Buds bromptonbuds.com
Entertainment The Swing Kings theswingkings.co.uk
Your New Favourite Band ynfb.co.uk
Drinks, personalised cocktails and bar Thirst Choice thirstchoice.org.uk
Pizza van & dessert cart Two Birds Kitchen twobirdskitchen.co.uk
Ice cream Benny's Organic Ice-Cream bennysorganicicecream.co.uk
Shortbread & meringue kisses Little Lark Cakes littlelarkcakes.co.uk
Cake Edible Essence Couture Cake Co. edibleessencecakeart.com
Tables & carts Virginia's Vintage Hire virginiasvintagehire.co.uk
Skulls Cybels Vintage Hire cybelsvintagehire.co.uk
Love letters westcountryweddingplanner.co.uk
Space hoppers Best Day Ever bestdayeversouthdevon.com
Garden chess set The Prop Factory propfactory.co.uk
Marquees World Inspired Tents worldinspiredtents.co.uk
Photo booth Knots & Kisses knotsandkisses.co.uk
Copyright Wed magazine 2018
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