Katie-Jane & Philip: The Love Story
To plan the perfect proposal, Philip looked no further than the countryside near girlfriend Katie-Jane’s family home in the West Midlands. “I began to get suspicious when he was adamant we go for a walk, as I’m not big on exercise,” jokes Katie-Jane. “He got down on one knee by a beautiful lake and told me he chose the spot because he wanted a place we could bring our children when we’re older.”
Photography by Ian Davies (ianshootsweddings.com)
Katie-Jane & Philip: The Place to Be, Part 1
After several unsuccessful venue visits, Katie-Jane and Philip realised their dream wedding location was right under their noses: her parents’ garden. The couple decorated with hay bales (sourced from a local farmer) covered in pretty floral tablecloths and laced a ‘You Had Me at Hello’ banner through the trees.
Katie-Jane & Philip: The Place to Be, Part 2
“It was beautiful and personal, and gave us the flexibility we wanted,” Katie-Jane says of their garden venue. Guests first gathered for a ceremony at the local church then headed outdoors for a brilliant backyard do combining a festival atmosphere and tea party staples with a twist. “I wanted the wedding to reflect our style in every way – mismatched, handmade and quirky, involving all the things Philip and I love.” The couple purchased their vintage deck chairs on eBay.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Tipi Time!
The wedding breakfast was held inside a massive tipi, hired for the reception from Tipis4Hire. Outside the entrance to the tent, Katie-Jane and Philip displayed their table plan, which featured artwork from a series of Ladybird books, on an easel.
Katie-Jane & Philip: The Sky’s the Limit
Vintage wedding cards were strung together to create unique hanging decorations.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Table Talk
Inside the tipi, an eclectic mix of Fifties tablecloths, Sixties fabrics and lace curtains covered tables, along with handmade menus and playful forms for guests to fill in details on how long they’d known the couple, fun memories and marriage advice.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Book Worms
“Each table was named after an old Ladybird book, and the titles referenced things about myself and Philip, like ‘London’ (where we live), ‘The Elves and the Shoemaker’ (as I work as a designer at Kurt Geiger) and ‘The Computer’ (as Philip works at AOL).
Katie-Jane & Philip: Hanging Around
Katie-Jane used unexpected colour and texture combinations to create unique décor throughout the reception, and the crowning achievement had to be this amazing teacup chandelier. “When the main light was hung in the tipi, I just tied loads of teacups to it,” she explains. (We love it!)
Katie-Jane & Philip: Twist on Tea Time
Favours for the ladies were handcrafted by Katie-Jane using teacups and wineglass stems – she’s now hiring and selling her creations through email@example.com.
Katie-Jane & Philip: In Bloom
The reception flowers, too, were a labour of love, arranged by the bride and maid of honour with blooms bought from a wholesaler. “I just turned up at the flower market the day before to see what took my fancy,” Katie-Jane says.
Flower wholesaler: Brett Fitzpatrick at J Van Vliet (jvanvliet.com)
Katie-Jane & Philip: Flower Power
“Sunflowers had to feature in my bouquet as they’re my favourite and the happiest of all the flowers – and I also wore daisies in my hair for a hippy Sixties/Seventies vibe,” Katie-Jane explains.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Maid for Each Other
Katie-Jane’s best girls dazzled in stylish high-street finds from H&M and French Connection. “It was important to me that they all had something they could wear again,” she says.
Katie-Jane & Philip: If the Shoe Fits …
As a designer for Kurt Geiger, Katie-Jane also made sure that fabulous footwear took centre stage: “All of the girls wore my Kurt Geiger shoe designs!”
Katie-Jane & Philip: All About the Dress(es), Part 1
“I actually had two The One moments when it came to the dress,” Katie-Jane admits. She found her Thirties bias-cut silk gown, which she wore for the ceremony, at a vintage shop in Brighton called Hope & Harlequin.
Katie-Jane & Philip: All About the Dress(es), Part 2
“I fell in love with my Sixties-style lace shift at a Vera Wang sample sale when I was shopping with an engaged friend before I was even engaged myself,” Katie-Jane says. “It sang out to me and I had to have it!” Meanwhile, she found her glittering gold mules at Miu Miu.
Groom’s suit and shoes: Maison Martin Margiela (maisonmartinmargiela.com) and Paul Smith (paulsmith.co.uk)
Katie-Jane & Philip: Costume Change
The couple filled an antique dressing table with fancy dress props so guests could get playful for the photos.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Love Notes
Guests sent their RSVPs in on vintage postcards that were then incorporated into the W-day décor.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Made in the Shade
To enhance the indoor-outdoor vibe, the couple sourced cool vintage lampshades at charity shops and hung them from tree branches with pretty ribbon.
Katie-Jane & Philip: Fancy a Drink?
“Philip and I met at a bar called Poppy Red in Birmingham and so turned one of the sheds into the bar and called it Poppy Red,” she says. “We had bottles of cider, lager and local bitter, plus Victoria ale in a keg, among other drinks.”
Katie-Jane & Philip: Let Them Eat Cake, Part 1
“We didn’t have a cake, we had a table of cakes!” Katie-Jane says. “I wanted a village cakestand type of feel, with friends and family contributing. The cake we cut was a triple raspberry sponge made by my sister-in-law Claire.”
Katie-Jane & Philip: Let Them Eat Cake, Part 2
“My sister-in-law also made lemon drizzle and carrot cakes, and we also had cupcakes by my friend Edwinna (vanillacupcakekitchen.com), Phil’s favourite custard slices from Greggs and macaroons for me – which lasted about four minutes before they were all consumed,” Katie-Jane says.
Katie-Jane & Philip: This Magic Moment
In the evening, a mash-up of musical styles kept guests dancing into the night, beginning with a special Blues Brothers-inspired performance to Ray Charles’ Shake a Tail Feather by the bride and groom. “I was dancing until 3am, drinking brandy and listening to the Beatles,” Katie-Jane remembers. “The police even turned up at 2.30am after a complaint about the noise, but they just told us to enjoy ourselves!”
For more inspiration, Katie-Jane style, check out her blog, whatihavealwayswanted.co.uk.
Photography by Ian Davies (ianshootsweddings.com)