Your East Anglian Wedding - December 2022/Januar 2023 (Issue 58)

Stephanie and Thomas met when Steph went to buy a secondhand car and Tom was the car salesman. Steph certainly got a good deal and a lot more than she bargained for! “Tom was over 45-minutes late for the appointment and I almost walked away!” she laughs. “However, his wit and charm won me over! We were attracted to each other’s smiles and sense of humour hitting it off from the start – despite my children climbing in the boots of all the cars in the showroom! We met for breakfast a couple of weeks later and then took things gradually.” Fast-forward to Christmas Day when Tom proposed. Steph was slightly annoyed as all her presents had come from one shop Joules. Tom asked if Steph wanted to go for a walk – she didn’t as it was raining – Steph then persuaded Tom’s mum to join them! Tom popped the question on one knee on a bridge, crossing The Wash, in Stowmarket! “I thought he had fallen over!” recalls Steph. “I never thought Tom was the marrying kind as we had never really discussed it, so it completely took me by surprise!” The date was set, 21st May 2022, with Little Green Wedding Barn, Norfolk, setting the scene. Here, Steph tells us more about their big day… SETTING THE SCENE Initially, Steph and Tom were due to get married pre-covid, so had to rethink their plans when their original venue never re-opened after the pandemic. Steph fell in love with Little Green Wedding Barn the moment she saw it. “It’s the perfect mix of old and new,” she says. “It has so much character and charm in the older part, and the new extension, with the bar and dancefloor, provided the ideal setting for the evening. Also Paul Yaxley, the owner, was just amazing, he couldn’t have done more to help. He was so thoughtful and understanding especially when we mentioned we had already had the original venue cancel and were on our third date already.” For the finer details of the day, the pair offered guests mini gin bottles with a personalised label tied with either a pink or grey ribbon to match the colour scheme, while the children’s favours had sweets in them. The table plan was a feature wooden ladder with gin bottles to represent the table. For their place settings, Tom and Steph collected grey pebbles from their favourite beaches they’d visited, and Steph hand-painted them with people’s names. The centrepiece continued the gin theme and were matching bottles to the table plan with pink and white flowers in, a complimentary tonic bottle that had the top cut off which contained a floating candle, and a miniature gin bottle with a bud on a grey base plate. The big-day bake was a layer of vanilla sponge with grey fondant, a lemon flavour with white fondant icing (Tom’s favourite), and a layer of chocolate orange with pink fondant icing (Steph’s favourite). “On top we had two wooden birds with our initials on as birds are Tom’s favourite animal,” adds Steph. The cake stood on a hand-decorated crate with ‘and they lived happily every after’ on. On the day, the couple had the beautiful ‘Tilly’ from Beautiful Day Wedding Cars, a lovely old-fashioned convertible car. The food was provided by Little Green Wedding Barn and boasted homemade pâté and onion chutney with walnut and raisin bread to start, followed by mustard crusted roast chicken, millefeuille potatoes and seasonal vegetables, the wedding cake was served as dessert. In the evening they served pulled pork rolls with apple source which went down a storm with guests. LOOKING THE PART Steph purchased her dress from Peters Bridal Warehouse. It was a simple Bardot-style dress with a natural waistline, simple and 37 REAL WEDDINGS