Allouise is one of my favourite people. I met her at the wedding of another one of my favourite people and we instantly made friends. When she got engaged, I crossed my fingers that she would book and was super happy when she did. I knew that their wedding would be brilliant and it did not disappoint! Here is Allouise to talk you through the planning process.
Your venue:- We met in Birmingham City Centre (The Victoria), we dated in the City, we only live 10 minutes out of the centre….we are Brummies – why go away from somwhere that is full of life, love and history for us?!. We looked at a few different venues in City from the Art Gallery Museum to the Bond but when we walked into the bright open space of the Old Library, we just knew….it was a little bit of us. Simple understated entrance followed by an abundance of history that has been renovated with all the quirks still in place (including some of the books!) and the team were FANTASTIC!! Not just on the day but every step of the way…..Johannah and the team (even Cal) were cool, calm and collected. They thought of every little detail….even ensuring I had my ice pack for my leg during the meal…….OH MY WORD, the food….can we get an amen please for the food?? “Street food? at a wedding?” Darn tooten we did and it was epic!! I would urge any bride to go and visit the Old Library in Digbeth and if for some reason you don’t fall in love with the atmosphere of the Custard Factory then wait till you step inside the Old Library and meet the team.
Outfits (for the bridal party) – I had 5 Bridesmaids and a flower girl….Initially I wanted them all the bridesmaids to have different dresses to reflect all their amazing personalities but in the end, budget/shape/height/circumstance led me to some intense eBaying – with the help of a friend who was a recent bride I opted for navy blue multi-way maxi dresses. And given the heat wave we were in….all were thankful!
Lucy, the Flowergirl….her dress, was an absolute steal. A friend of a friend posted on facebook she was selling the dress for £10….Next dress, only worn once in Lucy’s size – thrift me that dress ASAP!
My dress – oh my dress….my dress was a little gem found in a bridal boutique in Brinklow called The Bridal Gallery…..there’s a sad sorrowful story around an endless pity party for 1 but the truth be told, that dress and the ladies in the boutique were amazing. Maggie was amazing she helped me, my broken leg and crutches in and out of countless dresses, it was a long hot, sticky afternoon till we found “Millie” – my wedding dress was called Millie…..the name of the dog who broke my leg 5 months before I was getting married….how could it not be the dress for me?! Sarah, who made all the alterations, carried the dress to my car and gave me the biggest hug. The dress was beautiful but the ladies and the service was impeccable! I should also mention if it wasn’t for 2 of my naughty bridesmaids (Sarah & Mandy) kidnapping me to try dresses on….I probably would have gotten married in my pyjamas….
Rings: James had my Great Grandmothers ring for the day, he said he didn’t want a ring and that’s his choice….so I blew the budget on a ring from Tiffany & Co for me, his loss…my gain!
Cake: My sister & her friend made us 2 different types of cupcakes and chocolate brownies….we also loaded up on biscuits at the tea & coffee station…along with sweeties
Flowers: Flowers were a DIY job for me & my Mom, we had a lot of downtime together given she was my carer whilst I was bed bound. So we had some afternoons shopping at the Range, Dunelm & hobbycraft shopping for faux flowers, then we played around with arrangements until we found the perfect one. It was a sticky task but the pride I felt when people complimented them was worth it.
Photographer: The Loooooooooooooooooooooooooooverly Laura – I met Laura at a wedding where I was Bridesmaid, bless, we were in the same boat really as I only knew a handful of people and she knew no one (plus she’d battled through the whole day with a horrible cold) – we then stayed in contact over social media – once I saw my friends pictures, I knew who I was having when I got married xxx
Evening entertainment: DJ Warren is an absolute legend…..also a friend of the family! James (the Groom), said he wanted to do the music….that was his job, his pride & joy…..the epic playlist to end all playlists…had all my faves on there….Dolly Parton, The Cure…then the dance floor hits….move over folks, Lizzo’s on!
Venue Decor: The great thing about the Old Library is that it is a blank canvas. Centre pieces were globe vases from a lovely lady who was selling her florist business, so I nabbed them at a steal….then it was another task for me & my mom….the bases were all lined with famous love poems for the smallest touch of soppiness – I spent days covered in PVA glue, it was the best time! We had balloons filled with confetti from Etsy, Lanterns from The Range for the Aisle Decoration. Card holder was from Ikea with some personalisation from myself. Seating plan, oh that darn seating plan….another DIY job from Ikea. The welcome sign was from eBay (put into an Ikea frame) – Easel’s were from Hobbycraft. Placeholders were all pictures of our friends and family along with charity pins that our close to our hearts. I just wanted things to be simple….it can’t go wrong if it’s simple…..apart from when Mandy let’s go of the Mr balloon….:)
Any other suppliers:
I had a big red vintage bus to bring me, my family & friends into Digbeth – Midlands Bus Hire (Specifically Anne Steward & the drivers) were A-mazing, it was the only part of the day that made me anxious, it was too easy to book, I just thought it was too good to be true but it all went smoothly and they were so friendly too – made us feel VIP from the moment they arrived!
A couple of planning questions:
- When you were planning, what were the most important things that you wanted for your wedding? To keep it simple, I didn’t want to (or could afford to) get stressed over 1 day….we were getting married – why start a marriage with stress and arrangements when we already went through so much a few months beforehand. And the cost….we had a very specific honeymoon in mind so we knew we needed to be careful with the pennies….hence all the DIY!
- Is there anything that you wished you had done differently? Helped Laura more, given more specifics to the Groomsmen, where photos are concerned timings and details are not to be overlooked.
- Can you offer any advice to couples in the planning process? Be kind and ready to compromise. Take your time, don’t rush into buying something because it’s there…..be savvy, when buying decorations…don’t just buy them for the day – see if you can find some functionality in what you use, recycle. Don’t be afraid to ask other recent brides for advice or see what’s in their lofts….
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