Your Hampshire and Dorset Wedding - January/February 2023 (Issue 96)

After Sophie moved to North Dorset in 2015, her friend introduced her to Steve on a night out. After messaging via social media for a few months, they finally had their first date on Christmas Eve. Sophie thought Steve was charming, generous and patient – it was no surprise when they started dating. Steve proposed in front of the Christmas tree at home three years later, which was perfect timing as Sophie loves the festive season and it was their third anniversary! SETTING THE SCENE From day one of planning the wedding, the couple fell in love with the rustic spaces at The Old Milking Parlour at Cavokay House. The team allowed the couple to decorate the spaces as they pleased, and make the most of the lawn area with games. The woodland provided an incredible backdrop to couple shots, and the wooden door in the heart of the woods is something out of a fairytale! A Campervan called Lily transported Sophie and her two bridesmaids on the wedding day. The couple has used the Campervan twice; the first time was when they legally tied the knot at their local church in 2021. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the couple only had 15 guests and decided to plan another wedding with all their loved ones the following year. The couple were lucky enough to win their wedding favours in a competition hosted by BLOOM Gin, which was dedicated to couples whose wedding plans were affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Each guest received a miniature bottle of the company’s gin. To highlight their love of gin even more, the pair also used a wooden ladder to display gin bottles for their table plan. The bride used parcel labels and vellum around the neck of the bottles to show where each guest was sitting. There were also bottles in the windows to represent loved ones no longer here; Harrison gin was dedicated to Sophie’s late Grandpa. For the centrepieces, the couple used gin bottles on mirror plates with fairylights inside and flowers in recycled jars decorated with twine, hessian, wooden hearts and ribbon to emphasise the rustic theme. The bride says, “It was satisfying to see all the little details coming together on the day, from the menus to the unplugged ceremony chalkboard – all our efforts paid off in the end.” Outside, the bride wrapped twine around the trees and hung photos of the couple over the years using wooden pegs. Dried flowers were featured throughout the day with pampas grass, poppy heads and bunny tails. A stunning garland made by Pamplemousse Dorset was draped on top of the welcoming sign, and there was also a garland for the top table made by Olive and the Bumblebee while the bride’s bouquet came from MUD Urban Flowers. The couple’s two-tiered cake was made by a friend called Mike who has a lifelong love for baking. The bottom tier was chocolate Guinness flavoured, while the top tier was lemon and elderflower. The bake was covered in cream cheese frosting and was decorated with dried flowers. There were two small cat figurines dedicated to the pair’s furry friends, Benji and Luci, which sat on either side of the cake on the cake swing provided by the venue. The couple chose Victoria O’Brien for their catering needs; she provided a gorgeous roast chicken supreme with all the trimmings. Her cauliflower cheese was a huge hit as were the pigs in blankets! Victoria’s famous and incredible Biscoff cheesecake followed for dessert. For the evening, Victoria 29 REAL WEDDINGS