Fion & TJ
A vintage wedding for the
bride who won her dream dress!
PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANDREW REECE SHARP EDGE PHOTO
Fion and TJ had been together for six years when he proposed, so while it was a challenge, he was determined to take her by surprise. Seven months after asking her father for permission, TJ popped the question near Blackfriars Bridge over a weekend away in London. He’d already dashed her hopes once that night, joking that he’d booked the whole restaurant out for her to get her hopes up, only for another table to walk in! Luckily, this bride was thrilled with her proposal and her rose gold, morganite and diamond ring. “I went for a manicure the next day to show it off at its best,” Fion tells us.
And the luck didn’t stop there for this bride, because a short while later she won her dream dress through Wedding Ideas!
“It was the 150th edition and to celebrate there were 150 golden tickets hidden in 150 issues, including my copy! I entered and won a Benjamin Roberts dress. I was able to choose dresses from the collections to try on, which were then sent to Perfection Bridal & Menswear in Bromsley, to decide which would be the one. It was the massive, vintage-style 2058, featuring a long train, lace panels and a soft tulle overlay on the ball gown skirt. I felt like an icon of old Hollywood!
It was only when I put on my two-tier, lace-edged veil that it finally hit my mother that I was getting married – she couldn’t hold back the tears! On our wedding morning, TJ gifted me a Clogau gold heart locket which I wore alongside a rose gold Welsh love spoon pendant, passed down from my great auntie.”
Six bridesmaids attended Fion, wearing dusky pink, floor-length dresses that featured roses on the bodice and metallic flower crowns.
Her sister-in-law, Jennifer Jane, is a hairdresser and makeup artist, so she took care of the bride’s beauty needs, using Lancome and MAC products.
TJ looked stylish in a dark navy lounge suit with a white Victorian-style collared shirt and waistcoat, all hired from Groom in Chester. Dark brown brogues, sourced from House of Fraser, and a gold watch and cufflinks that his father wore when he married his mother completed his look.
The couple tied the knot at Rowton Hall Hotel and Spa in Chester, where the registrars made them feel completely at ease. Their civil ceremony was made extra special by their pageboy, nephew Leo, who brought their rings in on a cushion made from the bride’s dress fabric. The speeches also added a special touch, with the father of the bride, groom, father of the groom, best man and maid of honour all speaking.
Vintage, navy, pink and pearls guided the couple’s reception decorations. “We hired decorators Woodyatt Warner, who provided up-lighting, a twinkling backdrop, top table swag, gold fish bowl centrepieces with dusky pink roses, pillar candles and pink organza bows. They really took the pressure off and transformed the venue with atmospheric lighting, and even packed it all away again the next day! I added wicker hearts and heart- shaped tea light holders to the conservatory as well as vintage-style jugs for the top table. My mother made our post box which featured our winning golden ticket!”
2lips Florist supplied the flowers. “They worked wonders with our brief,” Fion on tells us.
“We wanted vintage-style flowers that echoed the rose textured bodice on the bridesmaid dresses and their dusky pink colour.”
They more than met our brief and expertly guided us as neither of us know that much about flowers. The bouquets featured pink carnations, finished with ivory ribbon and pearl pins.”
The bride’s mother made their six-tier wedding cake using her grandmother’s family fruitcake recipe. Fion made the sugar flowers that adorned it herself, also adding dusky pink and pearl ribbons and a personalised cake topper. The favours were inspired by Fion’s Welsh heritage, with guests receiving a miniature Welsh love spoon each, purchased from I Do Wedding Favours.
A crowd-pleaser in the truest sense, band Monty Duo, booked through Function Central, played during the evening after being voted the favourite of a shortlist by the couple’s family beforehand. “They were immense!
“The staff at the venue said they had never seen the dance floor so packed.”
They performed a range of music to suit all age groups and even provided a DJ service between sets. My cousin also surprised us during the interlude with a special performance of ‘Use Somebody’ by Kings of Leon, ‘Wonderwall’ by Oasis, and Ed Sheeran’s ‘Photograph’.”
After a party to remember, which was one of this couple’s priorities, they set off
for a fun-filled honeymoon in Thailand, booking their action-packed adventure with Flight Centre. During their trip Fion and TJ snorkelled, took boat rides, and enjoyed food and Tuk Tuk tours, as well as embarking on a jungle jeep safari and sitting ringside for a Muay Thai boxing match!
V E N U E Rowton Hall Hotel and Spa, Chester
D R E S S Benjamin Roberts at Perfection Bridal & Menswear, Kent
G R O O M Groom, Chester
A C C E S S O R I E S Clogau
D E C O R Woodyatt Warner
F L O W E R S 2lips Florist, Cheshire
F A V O U R S I Do Wedding Favours, Wales
E N T E R T A I N M E N T Function Central
H O N E Y M O O N Flight Centre