Childhood sweethearts Joanne and Andrew chose a romantic red wedding theme for their summer celebration…


The proposal

Andrew’s proposal was a wonderful birthday surprise for Joanne. “It was my 19th birthday, and he’d whisked me away to Brighton for a romantic weekend away,” she says. “We arrived early, and after breakfast, took a quiet stroll along the beach next to the pier, where Andy got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. He then fell over on the pebbles before I had a chance to say yes!”

The bride’s outfit

After trying on about 20 dresses, Joanne found her perfect match in a slim-fitting Lusan Mandongus design in lace with brooch detailing. “It was a style that I wouldn’t have picked initially, but when I saw it hanging on the rail I realised it would work well with our shabby chic wedding theme, so I decided to try it on – and I fell in love straight away,” Joanne explains. She chose simple pearl jewellery to complement her dress, with shoes from Monsoon.

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The groom’s outfit

Andy chose a traditional mid-grey tail coat from Moss, teamed with a dashing red cravat and pocket handkerchief. “I advised him on colours, but he picked his suit himself, with the help of his two best men,” says Joanne. “He looked so handsome – I felt very lucky to be marrying him.”

The bridesmaids

It was a sister act for Joanne, who chose her two sisters as bridesmaids. They both looked drop dead gorgeous in their berry red gowns by Jasmine, teamed with diamanté embellished heels.

The ceremony

The religious ceremony at St John the Baptist Church in Bredgar featured the romantic reading Born to Fly, and organ music including Pachelbel’s Canon in D and Somewhere Over the Rainbow.

The reception

Joanne and Andrew partied with their guests in a marquee in the garden of The Sun Inn, Bredgar. “We had a seated buffet, but didn’t have a table plan, and instead let our guests choose where they sat,” Joanne explains. Andrew’s mum transformed the venue into the couple’s shabby chic vision with her vintage-inspired decorations, including red rose table centres, customised retro wine boxes and a wedding post box. The couple gave out Love Heart sweets in red and ivory organza bags as favours. “When we first got together, Andy gave me a sweet saying ‘Love you’, and I still have it 11 years later!” laughs Joanne.

The honeymoon

The happy couple spent a blissful fortnight in the Maldives, where they snorkelled, went island-hopping and took a sunset dolphin cruise.

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