This wedding is pastel perfection, just right for their country garden theme…


WHO: Aileen and Ian

WHERE: The Assembly House and the bride’s parents’ back garden, Norwich

WHEN: August 2012

PHOTOS: Matthew Bowen Photography

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How they met

“We met at university through a mutual friend, but we’d already seen each other back home in Norwich from across the room,” remembers Aileen. “We pretty much fell in love instantly, and the rest as they say, is history,” she smiles.


The proposal

Ian surprised his girl with a proposal – so much so, she nearly fell off her chair! “We’d had a great weekend with friends in Manchester, then on Sunday night, after we’d finished our roast dinner and were watching TV in our pyjamas, he just came out with it! I nearly fell off my chair and broke out in a cold sweat – probably not the reaction he was expecting!” laughs Aileen.

The bride’s outfit

Aileen’s dreamy blush-pink gown has seriously won our hearts! “I felt like a princess in my beautiful tulle gown from Alan Hannah. It was the first one I tried on, and I knew immediately it was ‘the one’. I never, ever thought I would pick a pink dress, but it just felt so perfect. Not telling everyone I was wearing a coloured dress was my big surprise for the day,” smiles Aileen.


The accessories

Aileen completed her head-turning aisle style with a tiara from Halo & Co and two pairs of shoes! For the ceremony our bride wore a pair of ivory sling backs from Next, and at the reception, a pair of baby pink, satin, Converse-style pumps from Carvella, complete with ribbon laces.

The groom’s outfit

Gorgeous groom Ian looked amazing in his Moss Bespoke suit. He chose the style, fit, material, colours and even the buttons, and then the suit was made to measure and tailored to fit him. “Although Ian chose it all, I did go with him, just to keep a watchful eye!” says Aileen.

The bridesmaids

We’ve got serious dress envy over Aileen’s gorgeous bridesmaids, don’t they look amazing?! The girls wore traditional 1950’s gowns from Vivienne of Holloway, in London.

The ceremony

The couple’s civil ceremony took place at The Assembly House in Norwich. “We had two readings, one read by Emily, my bridesmaid, and the other by my cousin Niamh,” recalls Aileen. “Emily read Union by Robert Fulghum and Niamh read an extract from The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams.”


The flowers

“Our friends Jane and Penny did the flowers,” recalls Aileen. “Before the wedding we all went down in a big group to the wholesaler, chose exactly what we wanted and then created the blooms at home.”

The transport

Aileen and Ian were so lucky with their transport. They borrowed a vintage car for the boys to travel in, and a VW Campervan from their friend, Jane, for the girls. “The camper had been done up so beautifully in a peppermint green, which went beautifully with all our wedding colours,” smiles Aileen.


The reception

Was at Aileen’s parents’ house, in their garden. “We already had a building that used to house a swimming pool, but that’s been covered over, so we just added a marquee,” says Aileen.

The details

We’re loving Aileen and Ian’s playful English country garden theme, perfectly executed in pretty pastels with vintage touches. “We ordered 250 metres of bunting, which I’d designed myself,” remembers Aileen. “We also spent the year before collecting antique tea cups and making gingham and lilac cloths for the tables. Our tables were also named after vintage sweets, and each table had a jar of those sweets on it, to identify it,” she adds.


The favours

I made the favours myself,” recalls Aileen. “They were pastel coloured paper bags filled with retro sweets and homemade gingerbread bunnies. In hindsight, I would not recommend trying to bake 300 biscuits the day before your wedding!” laughs Aileen.

The entertainment

The couple hired the awesome Hayley Moyses and the Bluegrass Forum. “They’re a wonderful band from Norfolk who play bluegrass covers of loads of great songs. They were beyond fantastic, and the dance floor was full for their entire two-hour set,” remembers Aileen.

The honeymoon

Aileen and Ian took a blissful roadtrip around sunny California. Perfection!

Aileen and Ian’s real wedding gallery