Molly and Matt’s festival wedding had everything a true festival would, with live music, pies and toasted marshmallows around the campfire for all the guests to enjoy…
How they met
Molly and Matt first laid eyes on each other at someone else’s wedding. “We were set up by mutual friends who seated us together,” Molly explains. “We were both a little excited and nervous, but after a few glasses of port and some barn dancing we started to relax and we hit it off straight away. The day after the wedding we met up again to go kite-surfing, followed by posh fish and chips.”
Matt whisked his bride-to-be away on a surprise trip to the Ice Hotel in Swedish Lapland. “I thought he was taking me somewhere tropical – I couldn’t have been more wrong!” laughs Molly. “Matt proposed after a candlelit meal in a log cabin next to a giant frozen lake, which was followed by a snowmobile ride, husky sledging and a spectacular view of the Northern Lights. My dad sadly died when I was 18, but Matt sneaked around to ask my mum’s permission on the way home from work one day, and she was really happy.”
The bride’s outfit
Molly hunted high and low to find the perfect dress for her 6ft tall figure. “Most of them were too short!” she says. Eventually, an Essense of Australia gown caught her eye, with its lace appliqué, plunging V-shaped back and silk sash. “I loved the pretty yet relaxed feel of it,” Molly explains. “I felt comfortable but not overdone, just right for a tipi wedding in a field.” Molly also chose a leaf-detailed tiara from Pearls and Charms, a Lalique charm bracelet and flat shoes by Rainbow Club. “I wanted flats so I could dance all night,” says Molly.
The groom’s outfit
The groomsmen chose their suits from Moss Bros hire. Matt settled on a navy blue Edwardian-style jacket with pinstripe trousers and a cream cravat and waistcoat. “I went along with him for moral support and to make sure the suits would tie in with what I was wearing – without giving away the details!” she explains.
The three bridesmaids wore deep purple chiffon maxi dresses from Dessy, with matching ballet pumps and fluffy white boleros from Monsoon. “I loved the soft, flowing fabric of the dresses, and the choice of colours,” explains Molly. Niece Maeve flew in from Germany to be Molly’s flowergirl, and looked adorable in a dress from John Lewis.
Molly and Matt tied the knot at St Mary’s Church, Bibury. “The congregation made us feel so welcome, and we really valued their support in our marriage preparations,” says Molly. The bride made her entrance to a Swedish folk song, and the hymns included Make Me a Channel of Your Peace and Lord of All Hopefulness. “It was a nice blend of tranquillity and celebration,” adds Molly.
The bouquets of meadow flowers wrapped in hessian and lace were assembled by the church florist. “She was non-commercial and didn’t even have an email address, but we met up a few times and I gave her photos for inspiration. She did a fantastic job,” says Molly.
The fun-loving couple planned a festival-themed reception in Nordic tipis at Far Peak Camping. “We loved the idea of being in the countryside, and the tipis were tucked away in a field surrounded by trees so it had a magical feel,” says Molly. “We hired the whole site for the weekend, so our friends could camp out overnight and join us for an after-party the next day.” The guests tucked into Pie Minister pies followed by Eton mess served in jam jars and a cheese cake from the Cheltenham Cheeseworks.
The guests were seated at wooden tables with benches topped with reindeer hides, arranged around raised fire pits in the centre of each tipi. “The tipis were so beautiful and atmospheric that they didn’t need too much decorating, but we had lots of tea lights in jam jars and wrapped fairy lights around the poles,” says Molly. “We had sofas and chill-out areas, as well as blankets for cuddling up around the fire. Matt’s dad made us a signpost with pointers to the tipis, camping village and woods, with one arm pointing to Lapland!”
“My brother’s wife works for Aston Martin, so we lucked out with the wedding car!” laughs Molly. “It was a cool way to arrive at the church.”
Matt used his skills from his job in marketing and design to make the stationery. “Our save the date cards were printed on a little cardboard tipi, while our invitations were quite simple, with a link to a website giving information about the wedding,” says Molly. The couple also ordered a ‘Matt and Molly’ stamp, which they used to personalise envelopes, labels and gifts.
“My brother Matt, best man Adam and my mum all made speeches, and cracked lots of embarrassing jokes,” says Molly. “My mum presented us with a chef’s hat to designate who is in charge in the kitchen, as we can be quite competitive! It was amazing to hear my family publicly welcome Matt and say such kind things about him and our relationship.”
Keen cooks Molly and Matt made their own cake, with chocolate, vanilla and lemon sponge layers. “People said we were mad but we loved it,” says Molly. “I’ve never seen so much icing sugar dust in my life, but it was great fun and looked fantastic.”
The guests were given bags of marshmallows with a whittled stick for toasting them around the campfire.
Live act Austin’s Maestro got the guests moving with their varied repertoire. “Then, the following day, everyone came back to the tipis for pizza, where we had a very talented singer called Laura Jayne Hunter,” says Molly.
The newlyweds went glamping in Cornwall, followed by a trip to the Maldives and Dubai.