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An Exclusive real life wedding - David & Beccie

It is said that life begins at 40...

in some ways that is true for me! David & I met at work the day after I turned 40. Neither of us were ‘looking’ for a significant other, but as colleagues we became friends and spent our days (in between working!) chatting,laughing, sharing hopes & dreams and generally without realising it, falling for each other. It was a while before we acknowledged this, but it was worth waiting for. Once David moved to a new company and I moved into a new flat our friendship turned into love.

We got engaged in New York City in February 2014. David made a whole lot of my dreams come true on that trip. My favourite TV show was Sex & The City; my favourite movies When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle & Breakfast at Tiffany’s. He proposed at the top of the Empire State building and we bought my engagement ring at Tiffany’s on 5th Avenue. They sound like huge corny gestures, but it was real, sincere, simple, perfect and wonderful. I’d found my real life Big!

We decided to get married in August 2016 and started planning it in June 2015. There was never any doubt where we would hold our wedding. It has been a long held dream of mine to get married at South Lodge. It has been a special place for me and my parents, who I would meet there for lunch or tea when my son Max was small. It was the one civilised place I could take my baby and we were always welcomed. South Lodge is only 4 miles from home, but after I met David I took him to The Pass and he was smitten too. It became our bolt hole, whether for a glass of Nyetimber on the terrace or having dinner & staying overnight.

We chose to have an Afternoon Tea reception rather than a traditional meal – accompanied by Nyetimber. South Lodge is known for the amazing Afternoon Teas and as this is my favourite ‘meal’ it seemed totally appropriate. We were keen to have everything as local as possible. Nyetimber is not only the house pour of South Lodge, but it is produced just a few miles from where I grew up and is world class, and right here in West Sussex. We wanted a refined English Country House ‘theme’, although I never really thought of it as a theme, it was just ‘right’. I wanted big blousy English flowers (roses, dahlias, chrysanthemums) in peaches & pinks. I had such visions in my mind which Fleurs in Horsham interpreted beyond my wildest dreams. The cake too I wanted to be as a centrepiece and when I gave my brief to Deborah at Raspberry Ribbon Cakes (Horsham) she more than delivered.

I really struggled finding the right dress! I thought I knew what I’d like but when I started trying on dresses I just felt so big and like a ship in full sail with heavy tulle and beading. I’d steered away from traditional, for being ‘older’ I didn’t want to look silly. I wanted simple and elegant – so in the end I chose a knee length oyster pink shift. I bought it in the February and when I took it to the dressmaker in July to have a few alterations to it I tried it on and hated it! It was too simple and not special enough. The venue is beautiful and grand; I am tall and not petite – The dress wasn’t bridal enough, and nor did it do me any justice. I had 6 weeks to go and no dress! But a casual online search led me to what was to become my dress. There was one left and it was my size. It was simple, yet wedding-y and elegant. It didn’t swamp me and it made me feel special…phew! On the day the amazingly wonderful Alison Smith from Bridal Beauty in Horsham gave me big beautiful hair and my dress was spot on. David wore a brighter blue (than he’d usually wear) three piece suit. The men didn’t wear ties which kept things in line with casual, but elegant, summer tea.

My 15 year old son Max walked me down the aisle. I was so incredibly proud of him and he gave a brilliantly warm & personal speech during the reception.

We were able to have my parents beautiful Black Lab, Patou at the wedding. He had flowers in his collar especially made by Fleurs! (My parents live in France and Patou is French so very discerning!)

We spent 3 days at South Lodge for our wedding and were able to have our parents & Max with us too which was lovely. We were made to feel so special and looked after by everyone at the hotel for the entire time.

The day was captured perfectly by Tony & Carol Jones at Oakhouse Photography (they were our one non-Sussex supplier, coming all the way from Kent! But I wouldn’t have wanted anyone else to have taken our photo’s)

The whole day was absolutely perfect in every way. There is nothing I’d change or want done differently. I’d dreamed of this day for so long and it was beyond all my dreams. Being married to each other is so important, and to share the day with our friends & family in such beautiful  surroundings was perfect.