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RUSTIC LUXE BRIDE’S DIARY: THE VENUE

Hi lovely B.LOVED readers, firstly I can’t believe a month has flown by already! The wedding app on my phone (yep, I am one of those brides) shows we now have less than six months to go until the big day eeek!  We have most of the ‘big’ things ticked off the To-Do-List but I know that after Christmas, weekends are going to whizz by in a flurry of venue visits / tastings / hair and make-up trials and dress fittings not to mention the hen do (can’t bloody wait!) – so I am trying to be as organised as possible. It is in my OCD nature, I just can’t help it!

So going back to the start, I may have mentioned that within the first hour of being engaged I had declared to Chris that I really wanted to ‘take some time to just enjoy the moment and be engaged’ before jumping head first into planning… ahem…. well that lasted for all of about five days until I couldn’t resist any longer.  On my 30th birthday Chris woke up to find me glued to the iPad – I had been awake since 6am researching wedding venues and announced that I had already sent an enquiry and set up a viewing the following month. Needless to say Chris was a bit surprised and felt I had left him out of the planning, lesson one was learnt… he likes to be involved!

For us the ideal venue had to tick a few boxes, we were looking for somewhere fun and not too formal, where we could really imagine having a big party with all of our friends. We knew it had to cater for at least 100 guests (the guest list was increasing by the day) and Chris was keen for the venue to be suitable whatever the weather (he knew I would spend the next 18 months worrying about the rain otherwise). Finally, with the nature of my job working in the wedding industry, I was keen to choose a venue that I could really go to town styling and unleash my creativity.

Initially our shortlist included a London venue,The Orangery Holland Park, and Sussex based venue Pale and Interesting. After some initial research I discovered that neither of the venues were taking bookings at the time (I have a feeling that has changed since so do look into them if they suit your brief!) but I then remembered a wedding venue that I had come across months earlier (yes, when not engaged) and had stored away in my memory for ‘when the time comes’.

I eagerly Googled the venue and remembered why I had loved it so much. I put in an enquiry and a month later Chris and my parents made the drive to Somerset to visit the beautiful Almonry Barn. The lovely owner Louise who lives onsite and runs all of the weddings greeted us. The venue was even more beautiful in real life and as Chris and I walked around beaming we both knew it was the one! The venue’s history – it is thought to be the oldest wedding barn in the country (over 800 years old) – combined with its picturesque setting and immaculate finish completely won us over. As the website claims, the barn is super stylish and elegant having been lovingly restored by Louise and her family.Every last detail has been thought of with quirky touches adding personality and character, I knew from the moment we arrived it would provide the perfect backdrop for our big day and suit our ‘rustic luxe’ scheme perfectly, the fact that Louise helps with the styling of the venue and has a number of props available to use was the icing on the cake!  The venue hunt was over pretty much as soon as it had begun with Almonry Barn being the only venue we visited – I did carry out lots of research online but nothing else seemed to tick as many boxes. I guess sometimes, when you know, you know!

Although in the past year I have had some wobbles over some of the decisions we have made during the planning process I can safely say that the venue is 100% perfect for our big day and I cannot wait to get married there! This month we are going to be designing our invitations so I hope to share more info on that with you after Christmas (if I can finally whittle down what I like) and will provide some behind the scene sneak peeks at some of the ‘wedding crafting’ I have been getting up to!

Until next time!

Gabi

x

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Louise

After a decade-long career in corporate interior design, I took a giant leap of faith, left the security of an office job, and founded B.LOVED in 2011 as a platform for romantic and beautiful wedding inspiration. Thanks to a whole lot of creativity, hard work and passion, my gamble paid off and B.LOVED became one of the leading wedding blogs in the UK.

You’ll also find me working as an Editorial Stylist, where I design and curate beautiful photoshoots for wedding and lifestyle brands, as well as contributing as a founding member of bridal inspiration hub Aisle Society, and running wedding industry community the B.LOVED Hive from our super pretty base in London. Yep, I definitely have the best job in the world.

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