When clients book me to help them fully plan their big occasions, they become more than an acquaintance because I need to really get to know them; to know their style, likes and dislikes so when the wedding day is over, I go into slight mourning but by that point, we’ve usually become friends on social media so I can keep stalking them and seeing all their new exciting chapters in life, post the big ‘I Do’… I’m not a weirdo honestly; they do usually correspond back with me. 🙂

Helena and Michael have been no exception to this. I was first contacted by Helena 18 months prior to her big day. She had been given my details by her sister-in-law, who I used to work with in a previous life and I will be forever grateful for that referral as (I personally feel and hope she does too) we had the best 18 months planning time together.

Helena and Michael had already chosen the Tithe Barn in Poppleton for their reception venue. It wasn’t far from her parent’s house in her hometown of York but as she now lived with Michael in Germany, they felt a planner would be beneficial for the ability to source things more easily when being local to the venue as well as the time factor.

A lot of people do initially perceive planners as an unnecessary expense but I cannot stress (and hopefully all of my now married clients will agree) how much of an investment in time saving we are. Helena and Michael also perceived this as an important factor in hiring a planner as they both worked full time and had a toddler at home that (quite rightly so) took up their time outside of the workplace.

When chatting to the couple, the most obvious thing was how relaxed they wanted the day to be. It wasn’t about big frivolities or archaic traditions that they felt had to be undertaken to have a wedding day, it was simply about that day being the step into a married life.

Due to the nature of the venue and the nature of the couple, it seemed logical to look for relaxed but great quality suppliers to match. That started with the caterers. After some tempting choices, Field & Forage were picked to come and serve from their gorgeous horse trailer in the barn’s garden

After various discussions, on the day the couple went with pulled pork burritos, beef rolls and of course German Bratwurst. There was also the most amazing dessert table for afterwards with so many options and if that wasn’t enough, F&F created a yummy ‘cake’ of cheese for the couple to cut and add to the choices.

Coming from Germany, it made sense for Helena and Michael to stock up on a lot of booze via their ferry boarding at Calais so they really needed a bar service that could be flexible in allowing them to use their own alcohol where necessary and take advice on what would work elsewhere. This is where the Yorkshire Bartender works perfectly. Callum is fantastic at advising on the right quantities of drink per guest and interesting options to suit individuals themes or ideas, so whilst the couple supplied the wines and beers, Callum’s team mixed up some tasty cocktails for arrival drinks as well as taking care of the tea and coffees post meal.

When Helena told me about the style of the day and the lack of formalities, the first photographer I thought of was my friend Laura from Hip To Heart Photography She offers half day packages for couples which is such a useful feature for those that don’t want every single aspect covering but still understand how important it is to document such a significant occasion in some format. Luckily Helena and Michael agreed and also loved her work and actually ended up extending some of the hours as so many lovely things were planned. I thank Laura for allowing me to use these images below.

Styling was my job! People sometimes wonder what the difference between a stylist and a planner is when a lot of planners offer styling packages…. Well the usual one, and certainly in my own case is that as a planner, rather than holding all my own stock, I bring other people’s talents together to create a finished article.

In this case, I need to in turn, thank Helena because she is a truly creative person. She learned how to crochet to make everyone a bespoke favour and make her own personalised cake toppers. She also created the menus in English and German so no guests felt left out and put together a photomontage, which I projected onto big screen whilst the couples joint speech took place.

The couple’s chosen colour scheme were greens and blues so I ordered in corresponding linen to go on the tables and inject some fun into the rustic barn. I also suggested, with Helena and Michael both being scientists that their seating plan could be based on a periodic table with the guests either shaded in blue or green depending on which corresponding table they were seated at.

Florals and lighting also brought the barns to life. Through selection with the couple, Kathrine from Fleur Adamo  was hired to bring in her signature wild flower arrangements with various sized vases on each table, decoration around the projector, a huge arrangement in the welcome area and dressing of the rustic bar. I then hired festoon lighting from Fabulously Finished hung across the back wall to highlight the band and dance area.

The Tithe Barn has very specific rules in its operation, one of those being the fact that no amplified music can be played. This can be limiting but luckily Helena and Michael had a ceilidh in mind all along and The New Fox Band came highly recommended by the barns. Their pianist provided beautiful background music throughout the day and then the full band gathered to bring the evenings entertainment.

I must also thank Victoria Edwards Makeup and Emily Hawkes Hair for their fantastic communication and information, which ultimately resulted in Helena and some key people being made up for the day – of course, looking absolutely stunning all day.

I am so happy to have been a part of this whole occasion and couples like Helena and Michael are a constant reminder of how lucky I am to do my job.