Roo & Hugh – Larmer Tree Gardens…

DICKENSIAN GREY URN CEREMONY FLOWERS GARDEN WEDDING LARMER TREE URN DUSTY PINK AUTUMN

For me, our flowers were extremely important, and after seeing Clair’s bouquets on a photograph from a wedding at our venue, there was no option but to book her!
I cannot tell you how stunning our flowers were. The buttonholes, the bouquets, the statement arrangements, the centrepieces.
She was so devoted to her work, creating a comprehensive document we referred to throughout the planning process, always staying in the loop with me, taking our theme into account at every step.
Her knowledge— of textures, foliage and flowers, how different hues will work together to create warmth and depth and volume— is just astonishing. I’ve never seen flowers like them (and I have worked as a wedding singer for 10 years)!!!
Clair was so professional, and so friendly and helpful. Via email or on the phone I always felt like she genuinely cared about our wedding and the aesthetic we were picturing.

Clair is truly an expert in her field. Don’t think twice. Book her!!!

Millie & John – PTY Kitchen Garden…

summer garden bridal bouquet

Hi Clair,
John and I wanted to send you a message to say a huge thank you for all your wonderful work on our wedding flowers on Saturday. You have been so kind from the very start of the process and completely ‘got’ what I was hoping for, even when I couldn’t articulate it very well or name any flowers
My bouquet was incredible, the boys all loved their buttonholes, the church blew me away and Pythouse looked like an absolute dream….our perfect English country wedding.

Tessa & Max… Wild flower barn wedding… Dorset…

As you guys know, I’m an absolute sucker for the wild textured look, packing stacks of garden flowers and wispy elements into my designs… When Max & Tessa got in touch regarding their home wedding in deepest darkest Dorset, I was a happy little florist… I remember my site visit, the rain was horizontal and we got soaked taking a tour of the still to be refurbished barn, grounds of the farm and the pretty little village church… despite the cold and rain, I knew it was going to be something special!

So Tessa, why did you choose Max’s parents house as your wedding venue… Max’s parents own a small non working farm in Dorset. The grounds, little barns and village are just so pretty in the summer months… They had this rather large dishevelled barn that was pilled full of junk… in fact it had this sad little glitter ball hanging from one of the beams as the previous owners used to use it as a party barn. So that was it, Max and I were sold and decided to hold our wedding at his family home in Dorset… His parents were so kind to allow us to do this, renovating the barn, having brand new concrete floors laid, and basically letting us bombard their home with so many family friends. They both worked tirelessly behind the scenes making sure everything was ready and looking perfect.  They are the most wonderful family.
Had you always planned to have a country style wedding?… Yes, whilst we live and work in London we spend most of our time dreaming of escaping, trying to spend most of our weekends in the country. Dorset is such a special place, the countryside is idyllic and I wanted my wedding to reflect our passion…
How important where the flowers, colours and style to you?… Being surrounded by beautiful flowers and foliage on the day was super important in making the day that bit more special! Clair’s suggestions after I described the relaxed ethereal country style were absolutely spot on and the design process really was one of my favourite parts of the wedding planning, perhaps as it was the one area no one else was involved!! I still can’t believe how beautiful the flowers were and how smooth the entire process was from start to finish.
Tell me about your dress buying journey?… I’d heard you can go down a rabbit hole with dress buying so I spent just one day visiting four carefully selected places determined to make a decision that day. The last visit was to Louise Selby in Kew. It instantly felt right meeting Louise as you meet the designer herself rather than shop assistants (who in my albeit limited experience told me everything looked wonderful when I’m certain that was not the case). Louise was honest and direct but most importantly had the most beautiful dress collection so it was an easy decision. I chose a version of her Foxglove dress but with longer lace sleeves and more button detail, together with a long rose veil.
Tell me why you chose a statement cake?… I found Hayley Elizabeth by googling wedding cakes in the area (I don’t have Instagram!) and was blown away by her designs. It was so lovely meeting at her studio, trying her delicious flavours and chatting through design ideas. Although for our budget it was pretty extravagant to spend that much on a cake, I have absolutely no regrets and for those that doubted me they were silenced when it arrived! It was the most amazing creation I’d ever seen and I still can’t believe how happy a cake could make me! Max and I decided we would cut the cake before the sit down evening meal, so it made sense to make a statement of it… we had a separate marquee out on the lawn next to house… It framed an ancient old stone well in the centre of the marquee, it was a no brainier to place it here… both you and Hayley made it look so special surrounded by real flowers and cascading foliage… although guests were stunned when I said the cake flowers weren’t real but made of sugar! It was the perfect centrepiece for our drinks reception, making it even more wow cutting it with a sword!
What was the best part of the day?… Driving off with Max in his father’s old series 1 land rover after the reception and having 10 minutes to ourselves to take stock. I know it doesn’t sound much but you’re being watched (or at least feeling watched) constantly so this time alone albeit brief was so special and made the rest of it even more fun! I totally recommend taking some time for yourself during your wedding day, it goes by so fast!
How did Max propose?… Ah, it was really special actually…We go ice skating at the Natural History Museum just before Christmas each year and then for dinner and drinks, so he weaved it into this night and proposed at dinner, I wasn’t expecting it, and he didn’t go over the top and embarrass me, we had a very secluded table so it was low key and very personal.
Photographer – Helen Abraham
Hair & Makeup – Amazing Face

Clare & Patrick… Italian Villa… Dorset…

Hi Clair,

Thank you SO much for all the hard work you put into decorating the Italian Villa. It was absolutely stunning. You literally created exactly what we wanted but on a whole new level. It was insanely beautiful!…We walked into the room after having some pictures and we were both chuffed- we actually stayed in there for 10 mins having our canapés just to soak it all up before anybody else went in… We got some compliments on the flowers! So many people said how unique and vibrant the styling was… My bouquets were amazing. We split our photos up during the course of the day so both were used – and people noticed I had the second one too… We had a buffet at the local pub the next day so my sister boxed a lot of the flowers up at the end of the night so we could put them out on the picnic tables. We really made the most of them! My bouquets stayed fresh all week too, I had them in some vases at our hotel. 

Thank you so much for being part of our wedding, nobody else could have created that for us with such flare. You are so talented at what you do… You are the best!!

Lots of love,

The Cahills

Hannah & James… Sopley Mill…

So… This weeks blog is all about being true to yourself… not conforming to all those silly wedding rules, and just rocking it out as you see fit… Hannah has some great tips to share with you all, especially about budgeting and dress buying…

How did James propose?

James proposed whilst we were on holiday in Portugal, it was amazing. He popped the question on the first day, well… first evening as he carried the ring around all day waiting for the perfect moment… it rained quite a bit, which left us drinking sangria and exploring the old town, rather than sunbathing on the beach! After dinner we ended up sat in the tiniest bar that had live musicians playing Wonderwall…we just felt so relaxed and happy, belting out the words, when I looked down to see the most beautiful ring in front of me on the bar… the rest is history! Jim said he looked at us having the best time, just so happy in each other’s company, and the moment perfectly painted what our relationship is all about.

What made you choose Sopley Mill?

The New Forest is a very special place for us, we both love being near water, whether it be the sea, a lake, or a river. We very much live the country life of wellies, dog walks and log fires, and Sopley Mill reflected this side of us perfectly. We decided on a winter wedding as we knew we could still have a great day there and not worry about the weather as the inside is so beautiful with the exposed brick, fire places and amazing views over the river. Having said this, we were extremely lucky with the weather and had that really low winter sun all afternoon, meaning our guests enjoyed mulled cider out on the terrace. The other thing that attracted us to Sopley Mill was the fact it’s dog friendly, which was a big bonus for us as our Jack Russel was ring bearer!

What are your top tips to wedding planning?

As cliché as it sounds, do what is right for you and try not to worry too much about what anyone else thinks. So many people said to us that our wedding reflected us both as a couple and individually which made it unique to us and made it feel that extra bit special.

Also, when looking at your budget it’s so easy to get carried away. Try to work out what parts of the day are really important to you, and allow more budget for these bits… whatever ends up being less important can either be  left out entirely, or just be given a small budget… For example, we were desperate to have Clair’s moongate because it’s just so stunning, however we weren’t too fussed on having a wedding cake, so we decided to have a super cheap naked cake from M&S (which was beautifully decorated by Clair) and this allowed the money for what we really wanted… The moongate!

Lastly, don’t be afraid to get married ‘out of season’. We got married on a Monday in December between Christmas and New Year and had the most amazing weather and setting. You can make the day exactly what you want regardless of what day or time of year it is!

How did you choose your florist?

I discovered Clair on Instagram and instantly fell in love with her style, your work just seemed wilder, more unstructured and more relaxed than others I had seen. I was also a little clueless over flowers (mainly because they are so hard to pronounce!) and Clair was just so helpful and patient, not to mention really passionate which was important for me. I became a pinterest addict, which I shared with Clair, and you worked your magic from there. I also soon realised that all the suppliers we were booking all knew each other or had worked together already which was reassuring but also it meant the day came together much more easily!

Tell me all about your dress buying journey?

Oh my god where do I begin. I am still so in love with my dress! here it goes…

When we got engaged I decided I wanted something very simplistic with no lace, however after hours/days/weeks of searching the internet I kept finding myself looking at the INCA gown by ‘Grace Loves Lace’… yep, the whole thing was lace! I even kept looking at pictures of their show room because it was absolute interior goals. So I took myself and my bridesmaids to the London showroom in Shoreditch so I could try it on and it was just amazing… Everything I had hoped! The whole experience was just so relaxed and enjoyable; no rules or restrictions on taking photos, how many people could come along etc. We were just made to feel so welcome and felt we could fully relax, soak up the experience and not feel rushed because of other appointments after us. The dress and the experience just felt like it was perfect and reflected my personality so well. Having said all this, I felt I still wanted to look around, mainly out of curiosity to see what else was out there, but to also just experience the whole dress shopping thing. I went to a number of shops and yes I tried on some really lovely dresses in some lovely shops, but being pegged into a dress which was too big and then having to walk out and stand on a box in front of a mirror just wasn’t for me. The beauty of a ‘Grace Loves Lace’ dress is that they are SO comfy, there’s no boning, buttons or zips and I could literally pull it over my head myself and I was good to go. This meant that dancing, going to the loo and eating were all very achievable! 

I also got my veil from the Grace Loves Lace sample sale and it was 75% off! I did have to channel my inner Monica from friends (minus the whistle) and get up stupidly early in the morning to queue outside the showroom but it was all part of the fun and totally worth it!

Favourite part of the day?

All of it!…

Getting ready with my girls and mum, seeing James and Jackson (our dog) waiting for me at the top of the aisle, having all our friends and family together to help us celebrate, the speeches, the beautiful winter sun, the soul band singing our first dance live, the list goes on….

Photographer – Stephen Duncan

Stylist – Fundoo Weddings and Events

Makeup – Tara Sanger

An excellent creator of floral masterpieces

Clair instinctively knew what flowers to use based upon my brief... She is calm, relaxed, professional and discrete... An excellent creator of floral masterpieces which brought tears of joy to my eyes.

She is an extremely talented artist

Even after my own wedding over a year ago I still follow Clair on all her social medias... seeing her new work with other brides and feeling like she keeps re-investing herself, nothing is ever alike! She is an extremely talented artist.

We met Clair and clicked immediately

We met Clair and just clicked immediately with her. She had prepared ideas based on our description of the wedding and she was one of the few suppliers we met who genuinely tailored her approach as soon as she got the brief.