Charlotte and Mark’s Devon Farm Wedding {photos by Memories and Milestones}

Feast your eyes on today’s gorgeous Devon farm wedding. It’s Charlotte and Mark’s beautiful big day, with images by Memories and Milestones

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The proposal

Mark took me away to the Rock Inn at Haytor in February last year. It was a snowy, wintery day and we went for a walk. He was going to pop the question up at Haytor rock itself but was worried about dropping the ring in a crevice in the rock! Instead, he proposed later that evening over dinner. At precisely 9pm, (3 is his lucky number – 3 x 3 = 9 and it’s his position at rugby!) the clock struck and he presented me with a beautiful sapphire and diamond engagement ring and asked me to marry him. Of course I said yes and the planning began…

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Where it all happened

I got ready at our cosy farm cottage – Mark is a farmer and his parents live in the farmhouse down the lane so he went back to his childhood home and got ready there.

I loved being at my own home the night before and the morning of the wedding. I was even doing washing up and making cups of tea in the morning! It was lovely as I felt relaxed (well, as much as I could be!).

We got married at our local church – St Mary’s Church, Berry Pomeroy which is on the outskirts of Totnes. We live in the district of Berry Pomeroy and Mark was christened there and farms many of the surrounding fields. The church itself is beautiful – a quintessential English village church and was actually used for the filming of the adaptation of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility. I’m an English teacher so this was an added bonus.

We had our reception in a wheat field – still in Berry Pomeroy, just down the road so guests could walk there.  We had a huge marquee put up and the views are stunning. You can see right out over Totnes – the town and its castle as well as viewing Dartmoor in the distance. We chose this venue because of the view and it’s one of our favourite fields. Mark had planted wheat in there last year but had left a large area of grass ready for the marquee.

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What they wore

I wore an Alfred Angelo dress (854a)  – a beautiful vintage looking dress with a key hole back, lace sleeves, an A line style, a scalloped lace edge train and a diamanté belt from Amica Bridal Boutique, Plymouth.

I purchased a cathedral length veil from Phase Eight with a delicate eye lash lace trim and I wore simple flat sandals with pearls and diamantes – which Mark and my bridesmaids wrote messages on the sole in permanent pen (Pinterest idea!).

My bridesmaids – four (my sister and three best friends) wore navy blue lace dresses – again, with a key hole back. They were knee length, A – line and had a pretty bow around the waist.

We had two page boys – Mark’s nephews who wore navy chinos, crisp white shirts, navy braces and hessian bow ties.

We had one flower girl – Mark’s niece who wore an ivory a – line dress with a navy bow and hairband.

The men’s’ suits were hired from Moss Bros in Plymouth and were navy tailcoats with a hessian coloured waistcoat and pink neck ties and handkerchiefs – although Mark’s was ivory. They all wore tan brogues as well.

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The theme

Our day very much had a vintage/rustic/country feel. We chose this because the engagement ring was vintage and obviously Mark being a farmer, we wanted the country element.

The look was created with homemade bunting in a range of dusky pinks, lace and hessian. We had pink and white lanterns high up in the top of the marquee. We had the chivalry vintage look chairs and tables were covered in white tablecloths with a hessian and lace runner.

The centre pieces were large chunks of wood with a brushed bucket on top with flowers in. Our names places on tables were books – something we came upon when we were in Cardiff last year watching the World Cup. I bought some old books, painted them in Annie Sloan chalk paint (graphite) and wrote the book name in chalk and tied some hessian string around. The books were carefully chosen – either great romantic novels, something with Charlotte in the title or something to do with farming. There were a few tongue in cheek ones in there too – the likes of farmers weekly or rugby paper that’s more Mark’s reading style.

Guests were given small pots of homemade jam with a blackboard label and a luggage tag tied to it for their name place. The lids of the jam jars were covered in the same material that matched the bunting.

Also on each table, we had collected many jam jars and I stuck ‘Mr and Mrs’ ribbon or hessian and lace around each one and these were filled with candles.

Finally on the tables, we had napkins simply rolled and tied with hessian string and love heart confetti made out of old books. Around the marquee and outside there were plenty of hay bales, logs, candles, hanging hearts and delicate lights, lanterns and flowers.

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The flowers

I had a simple ‘posy’ style bouquet – full of pink and cream roses, gypsophilia, stocks, dill, peonies which smelt amazing. We also picked some wheat from Mark’s field and our florist added this into each bouquet as well as the button holes.

My bridesmaids had a similar bouquet and the flower girl carried a pomander made of gypsophilia.

Bryony from Alternative Arrangements in Totnes did the flowers and was amazing. She also did the centre pieces for the tables – filled with the same flowers and the smell in the marquee was wonderful.

Mark’s mum did all of the flowers in the church – the pew ends were buckets with chalk which I had written some love quotes on. They filled tin baths with flowers for the entrance to the church and outside we had two massive milk churns (Mark’s a dairy farmer) with cream and white flowers – to represent milk flowing out.

We wanted light and summery flowers that matched the vintage and country theme as well as to lighten up the dark bridal party outfits as they were all in navy blue – a colour which we both love.

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The cake

Our wedding cake was four tiers and made by Mark’s mum. It was alternating pink and cream and had edible lace added around the bottom. In addition, it had pearls around each base and sprays of roses dotted around it. It was sat on hessian covered board and on top the spray she made matched the flowers of the wedding. It was fruit cake but we also had three different flavours of cupcakes bought out on slate cake stands for our guests to enjoy.

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What they ate and drank

Our bar was supplied by Hunters Brewery, Ipplepen. On each table we had bottles of South African Sauvignon Blanc (my favourite) and Pinot Noir (Mark’s favourite) as well as bottles of cloudy apple juice – courtesy of Hunts Cider, Paignton who Mark’s relatives own. In addition, we had bottles of homemade elderflower cordial on each table and bottles of local Devon still and sparkling water.

Food was supplied by Bulleigh Elms Catering, Ipplepen which Sue Slade – a farmer’s wife, runs. Much of the produce was locally sourced including chicken from Crediton and beef from Harberton.

Guests enjoyed a range of canapés when they arrived at the marquee to include ‘Pimms on a stick,’ mini salmon wraps, pear and dolce latté tartlets and chicken parfait.

Once seated, guests had a choice of starters – chicken liver parfait with homemade pear chutney, three fish terrine or a caramelised red onion and cheddar tart.

Following this, guests had a cold meat platter with a variety of salads – pasta, new potatoes, Mediterranean and green salad as well as bread rolls, coleslaw and chutney.

For dessert, we had a trio – a mix of our favourites to include lemon posset, double chocolate profiterole and mini berry meringue.

We were then served tea and coffee with Sue’s amazing award winning fudge.

We were so pleased with our choice as we wanted something not too heavy and summery. It was pretty warm when we sat down so the meat and salads option was perfect.

For the evening, we had Rose Farm from Kingsbridge do a pulled pork hog roast. Guests were given the choice of having the pork served in a bap, a wrap or a box with salad. Some people went up for seconds and even thirds and plenty was left over so plated up to feed late night hunger pangs. Everyone commented on how great the food – both day and night – was.

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Photography and videography

We had Memories and Milestones photography – based in Paignton. We met Jen and Mel at a wedding fayre then arranged an informal meeting and booked. We loved their style – natural shots as well as a few formal ones. Our videographers were R and L Digital Media in North Devon and they were booked a bit last minute but were absolutely fantastic. Both the photographers and videographers captured everything we wanted and more and worked so hard all day.

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The party

We partied hard! With over 200 guests in the evening, the last ones staying until 3am.

We had local cover band – Society Rocks who we’d seen before in pubs in Totnes and Mark has enjoyed a beer or two with! They got everyone up and dancing and did covers from U2, The Killers and Madness.

We also had a DJ booked in from 2pm – who played music whilst our guests arrived and some beautiful, romantic acoustic covers whilst we ate our wedding breakfast. He also played in between the band and kept going till after 2.

Our first dance was ‘Grow Old With Me’ by Tom Odell – who was the first person we went to see live together. Also, for our first Christmas, we had both bought his CD for each other so it’s definitely an artist we love. The lyrics are really special.

Our last dance was ‘Romeo and Juliet’ by The Killers – the top table on the day was called Romeo and Juliet – being one of, if not the greatest love story of all times. For my 30th birthday, Mark got me a poster copy of the play – all printed on a poster from wordsonapage.com so the play means something to the both of us.

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The honeymoon

We had a ‘mini moon’ – last weekend in St Ives. We spent two nights at the Pedn Olva hotel which is right on the cliff looking over Porthminster beach. We visited St Michael’s Mount, The Minack Theatre before finishing off at Land’s End. Being a teacher, I had to go straight back to work but we are going to Malta in August for our honeymoon – we actually fly on Mark’s 40th birthday and are staying at the 5* Palace Hotel in Slime. It’s something nice to look forward to now that the wedding is over and it was a compromise destination as Mark wanted Scotland and I fancied the Maldives!

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Favourite part of the day

After the formalities of the service, jumping in the vintage car – an ivory 4 door Beauford with the roof down, the balloons being released and the ‘just married’ sign going up.

We went for photos at Berry Pomeroy Castle as well as stopping off in some sheep and wheat fields on the way. It was special as it was the first time on our own as husband and wife and we sat with the wind in our hair and a glass of champagne (cider for Mark!) in our hands.

We then went for a trip up the Totnes high street – waving to people – both people we knew and complete strangers. We felt like royalty!

Then to the reception where everyone was sat outside and cheered as we arrived. The speeches were pretty awesome too – everyone said they were the best speeches they had heard!

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Words of advice

Make sure you speak to each other and share ideas – as well as jobs! Ensure you do have that time together on the day – just half an hour or so to take it all in. I know it sounds cliché but enjoy every single second as it does go way too fast.

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Anything else…?

It was literally the best day of our lives – we wouldn’t change a thing and would love to do it all over again. Luckily we have the memories to last forever.

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