Today I am so excited to share this wedding with you all! This was one was truly special for me to be involved with. Not that all my couples aren’t important, of course they are, but circumstance made this a true honour to be involved with in these unprecidented times.
Roxanne and Tom, were an absolute delight to work with and remained so positive throughout. It shows that when love is strong, it doesn’t matter what is thrown in your direction and I am so grateful for Roxanne for such sincere responses to our quesetions. I think you’ll agree this is one wedding account you’ll find a joy to read. Keep your tisuses handy, it’s gonna be emotional!…
Tell us your love story!
Tom and I met on the our very first day of secondary school, our friendship grew throughout the years but we lost touch for a while when I went off to uni. When I moved back home after finishing university Tom messaged me and asked me out for a coffee and we’ve been together ever since.
How long have you been together?
We have been together for nearly 3 years now.
When & how did you get engaged?
Tom proposed to me on his passing out parade 31.05.19 in front of several hundred people! He had arranged the whole thing without me knowing, he had asked my Mum’s permission to marry me before and arranged for his Mum to smuggle the ring to his parade.
His brother had the ring on him all day and they went to the toilet together to hand over the ring. Tom came back out ready to pop the question – somehow I was oblivious the whole time – there’s even a photo of us together before hand, where he very obviously has a ring box in his pocket!
Which date did you chose for your wedding day?
We chose the 6th of August 2020 as our date. There wasn’t any pressure to stick to the date from family or an individual really. We had some pressures of needing to be married, to enable us to get our house and I could start my job as we decided to get married, move and for me to start a new job all at once!
Throughout though, regardless of any pressures, we had decided from day 1 that we would get married because we love each other, and we desperately wanted to be married. Whether that be with just us and two witnesses, five people or ten, we’d have as many as we could and we were delighted when we found out we’d be able to have 20 or so in the venue (socially distanced of course).
Where did you hold your ceremony & reception?
Both our ceremony and reception were at the beautiful Stratton Court Barn, Stratton Audley.
Who was involved in planning your wedding?
Tom and I worked closely to plan the wedding, though I did the majority of the leg work contacting suppliers etc. However, we had loads of help from our family especially our Mum’s offering opinions, insights and reassurance thoughout. We also had lots of support from Karin at Stratton Court Barn, that woman is amazing, and the rest of our suppliers (Emma, Signature Flowers; Richard, Something Borrowed; Lauren Ruby, Sophie’s Salon; Sally and Jasmine, S&J cuisine; Kate, Ruby Rouge Makeup; Kim of KJA photographer; Luke of Luke Hardy photography).
Were you able to have Hen/Stag Do’s?
Tom did not have a stag do, but is potentially planning a joint stag with a friend, who is also getting married this year. I had a virtual hen party with close family and friends. We played games, like pin the ring on the bride, over zoom, my Mum, my sisters and Tom’s Mum were together (socially distanced of course) in my Mum’s garden and it was really fun. It was lovely to still mark the occasion with a bunch of lovely ladies.
How many people did you invite to share your special day?
In the end we invited 20 or so people to our wedding ceremony. These were our closest family members, so parents, grandparents, aunties, etc. Obviously not all of our family could attend but it was really intimate and perfect.
We are looking to have a party to celebrate with our guests who could attend next year, but this is really a bonus for us. Our day was perfect as it was, we don’t feel like we missed out on anything at all.
Who were your Bridesmaids?
My bridesmaids were my sisters. Unfortunately not all of them could attend on the day due to COVID rules, but we kept everybody as involved as possible by live streaming our day.
Who were your Best Man/Men & Usher?
We had two best men and a ring bearer. Tom’s best men were his step-dad and Uncle, and his ring bearer was his brother. COVID made the ring exchange a slightly strange affair – because of the household bubbles Josh (Tom’s brother) could open our ring box to give Tom the rings as they were in the same bubble, but I couldn’t take my ring from Josh. So in order to maintain our household bubbles, Tom had to pass me his ring to give back to him!
What did you wear?
My dress was a lace fit and flare by Enzoni, purchased from Bicester Bridal. I wore a pair of personalised trainers from Etsy. The most gorgeous fresh flower crown made by yourself Emma and my jewellery was provided by my Mum – the earrings and necklace were given to her by my late Dad on her wedding day, so they were extra special touches.
What did the Groom wear?
Tom wore his formal military uniform.
What did your Mum wear?
My Mum wore a cream floral dress with a pink fascinator, bag and shoes to match. She looked beautiful.
What theme/colour scheme did you chose?
We didn’t really have a colour scheme, because I love bright colours. I wanted an understated vintage/rustic feel with lots of flowers – but we didn’t have a set theme per se.
How did you feel on the morning of your wedding?
The morning of the wedding I was excited, really excited but relaxed too. I expected to feel more jitters, but knew I’d be marrying Tom and so everything just felt right. I got a little anxious before hand when Kim, one of our photographers, had said Tom will be arriving in an hour or so. I don’t even know why I was nervous really, I think it was just a combination of several emotions all rolled into one.
We had a private reveal shoot with just Tom and I in the gardens at Stratton Court Barn, before the ceremony because I wasn’t allowed to walk down the aisle and it was amazing. Tom welled up and was speechless, but for both of us that moment completely dissipated any nerves we had, reaffirmed we were making the best decision of our lives and the nerves turned back to excitement.
What did you choose to eat?
For our wedding breakfast we had afternoon tea provided by S&J catering. Only two bubbles could stay for our wedding breakfast so we had my household and Tom’s (we’d be living apart throughout lockdown).
We sat on one long table with Tom and I in the middle almost acting as a barrier between bubbles and then our respective households either side of us extending around the table.
Karin made this work so well and because there were so few of us it didn’t feel like we were all separated, despite the physical distancing. We also had our wedding cake which was made by my amazingly talented Mum, everybody loved it and it looked stunning! (Thanks Mum!)
Who made speeches?
Speeches My Mum gave the first speech which was lovely, she spoke about me and Tom, and how when Tom fell off his bike when he was in school he knocked on our door to be ‘patched up’.
My step-Dad Trevor, then made a speech and passed it back to my Mum to finish off. It was really lovely that they both spoke. Then Tom made his speech, he thanked all of our guests both in person and those attending via zoom, he told me how beautiful I am and cracked a few jokes too.
The best men then both gave a speech, they were lovely and funny at one point during David’s speech (Tom’s step-dad), he made a Top gun reference and suddenly both of the best men, the ring bearer and Tom had aviators on.
Several of our virtual guests chose to toast with us throughout the speeches and send us photos and video clips of them doing so, which is amazing because those have become an extension of the record of our day.
Which song did you choose for your ‘First Dance’?
Our first dance was ‘I Just Wanna Love You’ by The Shires. We chose this song because I love The Shires and the words are beautiful. The song talks about how when you’re growing up you want for materialistic things, but you grow to realise that none of that is important.
Time is the most important thing you can give somebody and no amount of money can replace that time. It goes on to say “I just wanna love you” and it perfectly captured Tom and I’s feelings about our relationship and the day, especially in the wake of COVID.
What was your favourite part of the day?
It’s impossible to pick just one part of the day. I loved every second of it. Getting ready with my sisters and Mum was relaxed and fun, I had just the right team around me.
What was your one Wedding Day ‘Must Have’?
Comfy shoes and my team. I didn’t want to wear heels because I cannot stand having uncomfortable feet, I wanted to be able to enjoy my day in comfort and run around with my sisters.
My team – I chose my suppliers before lockdown, but I am so glad I went with people I knew and trusted those that Karin had recommended and worked with before.
On a personal note, I kept my wedding bubble small I didn’t post all over social media and I spoke to my Mum… a lot. My team was full of trusted and loved people, who had my back throughout it all.
Would you change anything or do you have any advice for currently engaged couples?
I wouldn’t change a thing, in fact I’m almost grateful for the COVID restrictions on numbers. I wanted a small wedding anyway, with just close family and friends, and sure I would have loved to have some more family there. However, it was so intimate we could just relax and enjoy every moment. Your day is for the two of you, so do what feels right and if that’s having an intimate day like us – go ahead. If it’s postponing, do what’s right for you. But remember it is just a day, a marriage is about a lifetime commitment to each other and the love you share, that’s what is important.
Would you like to mention any particular wedding suppliers who assisted with your day?
All of our suppliers were amazing. If they can make our dream day happen through COVID restrictions, they can make anything happen.
Stratton Court Barn and the wonderful Karin.
Emma at Signature Flowers.
Kim of KJA photography.
Luke of Luke Hardy photography.
Richard of Something Borrowed Event hire.
Sally and Jasmine of S&J cuisine.
Lauren Ruby of Sophies Salon (hair)
Kate of Ruby Rouge makeup.
Where are you going on your honeymoon?
We actually headed straight off on our honeymoon and went to the Lake district, toured around the Scottish highlands and returned via the Peak district. We took in the stunning scenery and even climbed 3 mountains whilst we were there.
Thank you so much for sharing your day with us Roxanne and Tom.
Wishing you a lovely week ahead.
Image credit: KJA Photography