A stunning real wedding in Sandon Hall, Sandon, Staffordshire filled with sunshine and sparkle. Jo and Andrew got married in August 2007


WHERE: Sandon Hall, Sandon, Staffordshire

WHEN: August 2007

PHOTOGRAPHER: Stephen Sutton

The proposal

Andrew proposed on Christmas Day in 2005, presenting Jo with the key to a red Mini Cooper! The couple chose the engagement ring together the next day

The bride’s real wedding outfit

Jo found her dream dress in the first shop she went in!

Designed by one of British bridalwear’s top names Charlotte Balbier, the ivory lace, fishtail dress was bought in the Dan Kerr Bridal shop, Preston.

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“Our flowergirl, Sarah, absolutely loved her customised outfit and said she felt like a princess!”

The accessories

Jo customised her real wedding dress, using an antique-style brooch from Oasis, then added a handmade veil from Frou Frou And Sparkle. Her tiara, jewellery and sandals were bought in Hong Kong.


The grooms outfit

The groom and his attendants opted for mid-grey suits with grey and silver-blue waistcoats, white shirts and blue cravats, bought from Hellewells, Preston.

The bridesmaids

Jo’s sister, Gemma, chose her cornflower blue real wedding dress from Dessy. Jo’s niece, Sarah, was flowergirl and wore an ivory dress from House of Fraser, which Jo customised by sewing cornflower blue flowers onto the skirt and making a matching hairband with ivory and blue ribbon and more blue silk flowers. The hairband and ribbon came from HobbyCraft, while Jo picked up the decorative silk flowers from eBay.


The flowers

“It’s good to stick to a budget but don’t scrimp on something that will make your day extra special, such as the fireworks we had. You will only do it once, so have the day of your dreams!” Amanda at The Flower Barn of Milford took care of the flowers, using a natural, classy colour scheme of ivory roses, Lily of the Valley and hydrangeas.

Jo’s real wedding bouquet was tied with ivory satin and an off-cut of lace from her dress. For the ceremony, a large floral wreath was a striking focal point at the door, while Jo’s parents cultivated ivory roses and blue flowers, which were positioned along the entrance steps to the venue, and in the Victorian Conservatory. They also painstakingly pressed rose petals and hydrangeas from their garden, which were transferred into baskets for the pageboy and flowergirl to give out as confetti.


The ceremony

The ceremony took place in the library at Sandon Hall, which was decorated with gold and ivory ribbons for the chair backs and gold skeleton leaves to complement the fresh flowers.

The decorations

Seat pads and cushions made by Jo’s mother helped to personalise the outside space. Stationery from Marks & Spencer and Confetti, and ribbons from HobbyCraft, added delicate finishing touches.


The reception

The reception was also held at Sandon Hall, starting in the Victorian Conservatory and moving into the Saloon for the wedding breakfast. The beautiful weather meant the couple could take some stunning pictures outside in the grounds.

“The suprise fireworks were amazing – now every time I see fireworks I think of our wedding day!”

The favours

Were Homebase tealight holders and stacks of chocolate tied with ribbon.

The cake

“The surprise fireworks were amazing – now every time I see fireworks I think of our wedding day!” Jo’s mother made the three-tier, square cake. The bottom and top layers were rich fruitcake, while the middle was sponge. A family friend iced the cake and added a decorative cut-out motif and ivory ribbon. The florist made spray bouquets for each tier, which were then displayed on glass stands


The music

Finesse, a piano and cello duo, created a fantastic atmosphere for the ceremony, reception and wedding breakfast Finesse-Pianocello In the evening, Ade Wood from Decades was the DJ of choice. He played tunes from a playlist incorporating selections made by the guests on their RSVPs. Later still, a surprise firework display by HFM Pyrotechnics added the wow factor.

Special moments

The couple stayed at Haywood Park Farm on their wedding night and found a card and a bottle of Champagne chilling in their room on arrival!


The honeymoon

The newlyweds went to Burgh Island, Devon, a gorgeous art deco hotel built in the 1920s and romantically located on a clifftop surrounded by sea views. Next was a three-week, luxury driving holiday in Europe, arranged by Bonne Route, including fine food and boutique hotels in France, Switzerland and Italy – a real adventure!