An amazing real wedding on a budget in Brentwood Cathedral in Essex

Want to see a a couple who had their dream real wedding on a budget? Read on!

budget-real-wedding-brentwood-essex

WHO: Beth and John

WHERE: Brentwood Cathedral and Mount Avenue Banqueting Suite

WHEN: August 2011

PHOTOS: Ben Queenborough

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About the couple

“Jon and I met at music college,” explains Beth. “Our accidental first date happened in December, when we both realised neither of us had done our Christmas shopping, and it was getting a bit late! He asked if he could tag along with me and we headed over to Spitalfields Market to buy presents. There were so many romantic Christmassy things and it started to snow – that was it, we fell in love. Just seven months later, Jon proposed to me by the River Thames,” smiles Beth

The bride’s outfit

“Because I was still a student, and Jon had just left college, we didn’t have a big budget, so I decided I would wear my sister’s old wedding dress and have it altered to fit me,” explains Beth. “However, I did want to try on some gowns for myself, and lo and behold I fell in love with a gorgeous gown called ‘Premiere’ by Ian Stuart – and that was it!”

The groom’s outfit

“Jon hired his suit from Moss Bros,” recalls Beth. “He said as he wasn’t allowed to see my dress, I couldn’t see his suit!” Fair enough!

The bridesmaids

“I asked my best friend, my sister, Jon’s sister and my four-year-old niece to accompany me down the aisle,” remembers Beth. “We had their figure-flattering dresses made by a friend from a royal-blue duchess satin – they looked amazing.”

“However, I did want to try on some gowns for myself, and lo and behold I fell in love with a gorgeous gown called ‘Premiere’ by Ian Stuart – and that was it!”

The ceremony

Was a traditional Catholic wedding in Brentwood Cathedral. “We had a lot of music!” smiles Beth. “Because we are both musicians, about 90% of our friends are musicians, too, and many of them very kindly sang or performed for us during the service. We even had a 30-strong choir!”

The details

“To help us save money, many of our friends and family offered their expert skills to help us create our big day,” says Beth. “My friend Emma did our flowers, having bought the blooms from a wholesaler in Essex, while Jon’s Mum made our cake for us. She spent weeks making hundreds of sugar hydrangea and rose petals.”

The first dance

“Jon wrote an arrangement of our first dance song; which was I’ve Grown Accustom To Your Face – a jazz standard that we used to listen to when we first started dating,” remembers Beth

“To help us save money, many of our friends and family offered their expert skills to help us create our big day,”

The honeymoon

“We stayed in a family member’s self-catering cottage in the middle of nowhere on the West Coast of Ireland,” says Beth. “We did nothing except sleep, eat and chill by the fire – it was bliss.”

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About Sophie Grabham

Sophie is Wedding Ideas' Details Editor and is recently married herself. A budding Nigella Lawson, she makes a stunning cake. She also loves micro pigs and would love to own one. She would call it Winston.