Kris and Gemma’s Torquay wedding {images by Tom Frost}

Kris and Gemma’s relaxed and pretty Torquay wedding began with a ceremony at St John the Baptist Church, Shiphay, followed by a reception at Stokeinteignhead Village Hall.

Thanks to Gemma for telling us about their day, and to photographer Tom Frost for the images…

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The proposal

We went away for a long weekend to Morthoe, near Woolacombe, in North Devon. When we first arrived the weather was beautiful so we went for a walk along the country paths and across the cliff tops. Kris had secretly arranged for a local farmer to leave a picnic basket just off the beaten track, complete with a Devon cream tea and champagne! I didn’t realise it was for us until Kris got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. It was a complete surprise!

About the day

Luckily the weather was good on our wedding day, a little cloudy at times, but not a drop of rain in sight! For me the day started with a trip to the hairdressers with my 3 bridesmaids, followed by my makeup which was done at my parents house.

Before long it was time to get dressed and make my way to the church! The ceremony took place at the family church and was very simple, with just two hymns and two readings.

After the ceremony everyone made their way to the reception and we travelled in style in a vintage cream Jaguar s-type with red leather interior. On the way to the venue we took a small detour to Labrador Bay where Tom took some photos of us together with the rolling fields and the sea in the background. It was a bit chilly and we had to dodge a few stinging nettles but having seen the photos it was well worth it!

On arrival at the venue we had a little time to enjoy the canapés while listening to the cheery blues guitar music of Stripey Howlin’ Hancock, before settling down for the speeches and cutting the cake.

The day was very relaxed and all ran smoothly thanks to our brilliant suppliers. Evening guests began to arrive from 7pm at which time the disco began, followed by the first dance and then the live band at 9pm.

Our friends at ‘Just Propped Up’ set up a photo booth with some amazing props which provided some extra entertainment and fun for the evening (some of the results are hilarious!). Thank you everyone that helped to make it all happen.

Décor and styling

We wanted a relaxed but pretty wedding so we decided to go for a rustic theme with a slightly vintage feel. We wanted the theme to be in-keeping with the village location and the surrounding countryside.

The venue was basically a blank canvas so this was very much a DIY wedding. We used lots of hessian and lace for the tables and hanging decorations. Flowers were actually our biggest feature as we wanted to bring a little of the Spring countryside inside. My sister-in-law, Jennifer Davey, is a talented florist and she did an amazing job with our wedding flowers. Cream jugs and jam jars were filled with a variety of beautiful flowers including wild daisies, roses, anemones and plenty of greenery. Fairy lights covered the ceiling and candle holders with tea lights created a lovely effect in the evening.

What they wore

I bought my dress from Brides at Waterfields in Torquay, which I wore with a mid-length veil, very simple with a few bits of lace edging it to mirror the lace of the dress. My shoes were ivory peep-toes by Rainbow and I added a necklace, bracelet, earrings and hair comb all with pearls and a touch of sparkle.

Kris bought his suit from Next, and the bridesmaid dresses were from BHS.

The photographer

Tom was absolutely fantastic. We were so impressed with his professionalism and his efforts to fulfil our wishes. Nothing was too much trouble. Tom was very discreet on the day and always respectful of the guests and proceedings. He has created some wonderful images which we will treasure and enjoy for many years to come.

After the day

What was your most memorable moment?   

The most memorable moment for us was when we were pronounced ‘husband and wife’ – after all that’s what the day is really about!

One piece of advice for brides-to-be?

Don’t worry about anything on your wedding day! All your hard work will pay off and it will be a special day no matter what.

The suppliers

Hair: McKinlay Martyn, Torquay

Makeup: Be Beautiful by Esther, Exeter

Catering and Bar: The Elizabethan Inn took care of all of our catering for the day, including drinks and the running of the bar. Both the food and service were fantastic.

Live band: Mafia 4, they played lots of great crowd-pleasers in their own funky style and the dance floor was busy all night.

Transport: Abbey Cars

Florist: Jennifer Davey

Cake:  Our delicious cake was made by our friend, Sarah Dawkins.

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