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Real weddings and wedding ideas

See how other couples celebrated their big day with wedding stories and ideas from County Wedding Magazines' Real Weddings features.

Pretty pastels

Pretty pastels

Although Hannah and Alex both went to the same school, he was in the year above and it wasn't until Hannah's friend's 17th birthday party that they met properly. They chatted all night and ended up exchanging numbers. Two weeks later it turned out they were both going to Reading Festival with the same group of friends. "We really hit it off, spent most of our time there together and shared our first kiss," remembers Hannah. "We felt a connection straight away and really enjoyed each other's company and making each other laugh."

The perfect match

The perfect match

Time stood still for Zac the very first moment he laid eyes on Hannah at the department store where they both worked, during their late teens. "I hadn't met her before as she worked mostly weekends, when I was off. So, when I saw this beautiful brunette walk through my department, everything went by in slow motion," he says. Once Zac had picked his jaw up off the floor, he asked a colleague for her name, and found her on Facebook. Hannah remembers, "We couldn't stop messaging each other right from day one. Zac's confidence and determination are what attracted me to him, plus I love a tall fella!"

Made for two

Made for two

A bicycle made for two; and the theme of the day for Rachel and Robert. Passionate cyclists Rachel Vann and Robert Nicholls met through their local cycling club, and while on, of course, a cycling holiday in the Pyrenees, South of France in September 2018 Robert took this opportunity to pop the question.

All you need is love

All you need is love

Rosalind and Alex were the first couple to say their vows at Southend Barns since it was forced to close for events due to the Covid-19 pandemic.The pair enjoyed a small ceremony with just eight close friends and family in the setting of The Secret Garden, the venue's fully licenced outdoor wedding area.

Love is all around

Love is all around

Sophie and Abel tied the knot surrounded by their friends and family in a romantic ceremony at their local church. Sophie and Abel met at work. "Abel had the cheek to ask my boss to set us up on a date," says Sophie. "My boss suggested I go for a drink with him as I was new to the role. I thought he was really fun and attractive and we've been together ever since."

An English country garden

An English country garden

Rebecca and Matt celebrated their big day in a stately-home setting. Sometimes it's hard to spot things even when they're right in front of your eyes! Matt and Rebecca finally got together after a great deal of nagging from Matt's brother and Rebecca's good friend who both thought they'd make a great couple. "We eventually decided to go on a date and quickly realised we had loads in common including the same immature sense of humour, similar interests in film and music, a passion for travel and visiting new places as well as aspirations and goals," Rebecca reveals.

Countryfile

Countryfile

Dee and Ben's wedding took place at the rustic-inspired Cripps Barn with a country theme brimming with soft, pastel colours. Dee and Ben met at Hartpury University in Gloucestershire. "He had come to the UK on a rugby exchange through his college in New Zealand and we were friends at first," Dee tells us. "It wasn't until Ben came back to the UK for the second time that our relationship began. We hung out together a few times and then, at my friend's fancy dress party, I realised that a half-naked Samoan dressed as Wonder Woman was the man for me!"

Natalie and Devon: Timeless elegance

Natalie and Devon: Timeless elegance

After a romantic South American proposal, Natalie and Devon enjoyed their big day at Putteridge Bury. Natalie and Devon first met at university during a social night. Devon says: "When I noticed her sat at a party table with an empty chair next to her, I went straight to it and began a conversation with her – she was the most beautiful girl in the room."

The fellowship of the ring

The fellowship of the ring

Maria and David had a beautiful The Lord of the Rings-themed wedding. Maria and David met in an oh-so modern way, online. "We bonded over our love of Game of Thrones," says Maria. "Dave was like a big friendly bear, and I knew he was the one for me."

The perfect day

The perfect day

Jessica and Martin tied the knot at Swallows Oast in Ticehurst on 30th August, 2019. Although Jessica and Martin's initial attraction was purely physical when they met on a Saturday night in Hastings, a deeper relationship soon blossomed once they began dating. Jessica worked for TUI and it wasn't long before she needed to work abroad for six months. However, absence certainly made their hearts grow fonder, and they haven't been apart since.

A day to remember for Zoe and Sammy

A day to remember for Zoe and Sammy

Zoe and Sammy's wedding featured shades of mauve, blush, plum and burgundy with touches of navy and rose gold. Zoe and Sammy's love story first started when they met at work and bonded over their mutual love of food and drink – they quickly realised they had a lot in common and made a great team. Zoe says, "Sammy has the most infectious laugh and smells good. It's impossible not to notice him because he's so confident and fun."

Floral abundance

Floral abundance

In keeping with an English country garden theme, Ben and Ellie's day was awash with colour and blooms. Ellie and Ben met during their first week at Durham University and became friends immediately. "A few months later friendship grew into more, and the rest is history," shares Ellie. When back in the UK from their current Dubai residence in 2018, Ben popped the question while on a nostalgic trip back to Durham. "We had planned to go up to Durham for a couple of days as a bit of a nostalgic trip down memory lane," recalls Ellie. "While we were there, we took a walk to a hill which was really special to us during our university days, overlooking Durham Cathedral, and that's where Ben popped the question."

La dolce vita

La dolce vita

Taking inspiration from Dolce & Gabbana and the films of Wes Anderson, Charlotte and Mark planned the most epic wedding at Arnos Vale Cemetery. We can't get enough of this gorgeous wedding – you had us at Dolce & Gabanna! The awesome Mark and Charlotte pulled in influences from all of their favourite things to create a day that truly reflected them.

Late summer glow with Sophie and Andrew

Late summer glow with Sophie and Andrew

Soft neutral and blush shades set the tone for Sophie and Andrew's romantic wedding. Friendship blossomed into romance for Sophie and Andrew. They shared similar interests and hobbies and were close workmates for a long time before they actually started dating. "We made each other laugh and have always been a great support for each other," says Sophie. They were together for nearly two years before getting engaged. Andrew popped the question while they were on holiday in Mauritius over an incredibly romantic private dinner underneath the stars at the end of a beach jetty. "I was completely overwhelmed and Andrew was delighted not to have dropped the ring through the slats of the jetty into the sea," laughs Sophie.

Truly romantic

Truly romantic

After many years together, Michelle and Christopher finally tied the knot at Cottrell Park Golf Resort. Michelle and Christopher's love story began in 2006 when they locked eyes at their local bar. "We met briefly, and as luck would have it we bumped into each other again a few hours later at a friend's house party," says Michelle. "I was extremely attracted to Chris and his gorgeous smile." Christopher popped the question on Christmas morning in 2012. "He handed me a Thomas Sabo ring charm for my bracelet and pretended to propose to me by saying 'would you do me the honour of making me a cup of tea?" shares the bride. "I burst into tears at the thought of him making a joke about a such a serious subject, and he quickly pulled out a box with a beautiful diamond and ruby engagement ring in. I was in complete shock and felt so elated."

Pretty in pink with Daniel and Katie

Pretty in pink with Daniel and Katie

Daniel and Katie's beautiful day was full of unforgettable moments. Love can enter our lives at any moment and take us completely by surprise, while sometimes old romances gets rekindled – and this is exactly what happened for Daniel and Katie. Around the age of 14, the pair dated but lost contact as time went on. Fast forward to 2011, they started talking again after Dan contacted Katie while he was in Australia. After a date to T-in the Park, the love birds have been together ever since. After that moment their love for one another grew, Katie says: "Dan proposed while we were travelling in Australia, we were on the beach at Hervey Bay in Queensland after a morning of meeting and feeding wild dolphins when he got down on one knee in the sea. It was a huge surprise, especially when we'd been in Australia for three weeks and I have no idea how he kept the ring hidden from me all that time!"

Home on the farm

Home on the farm

Frances and James had a marquee wedding at home, with an emphasis on having the time of their lives. Frances and James were both out in Northallerton's infamous Bongo nightclub when they met. "I just thought he wasn't bad looking," Frances laughs. It must have been more than that, as the couple's relationship blossomed and James was soon planning how to pop the question.

Late summer glow with Sophie and Andrew

Late summer glow with Sophie and Andrew

Soft neutral and blush shades set the tone for Sophie and Andrew's romantic wedding. Friendship blossomed into romance for Sophie and Andrew. They shared similar interests and hobbies and were close workmates for a long time before they actually started dating. "We made each other laugh and have always been a great support for each other," says Sophie. They were together for nearly two years before getting engaged. Andrew popped the question while they were on holiday in Mauritius over an incredibly romantic private dinner underneath the stars at the end of a beach jetty. "I was completely overwhelmed and Andrew was delighted not to have dropped the ring through the slats of the jetty into the sea," laughs Sophie.

Out of the ordinary

Out of the ordinary

Sophie and Travis enjoyed their wedding in a tipi against a stunning Cornish beach backdrop. Sophie and Travis met when he visited Australia on a working holiday visa. "It was a trip that his family thought would only last a couple of weeks," Sophie tells us. "We both attended a cocktail tasting night through work and it was there that we got chatting. This was followed by a Facebook friend request and the rest, as they say, is history! "The couple became engaged underneath the washing line at Travis's parents' house on a trip to Australia! "He assures me that he planned to propose a few months later when we were going to be in New Zealand but he lost his nerve and just asked me sooner!" Sophie tells us. "He proposed with his great grandmother's ring and then we went ring shopping together which was romantic."

Bright and beautiful

Bright and beautiful

Sunita and Simon married on 30th June 2019 at Chilham Village Hall. Sunita and Simon met online in 2015. "When we started talking, Simon seemed very sweet and kind, showering me with lots of attention. Even though we'd only been messaging back and forth for a week, when we met up for our first date, it was as though we'd known each other for years," Sunita remembers.

London in summer

London in summer

Jhuliana and Jonathan celebrated their intimate nuptials in a London restaurant resplendent in pastel tones. Jhuliana describes her relationship with Jonathan as a 'true modern-day romance': "We met online through a dating app. I'm Ecuadorian and my husband is from Bradford but we both live in London; in what world could these two people get together if not through the power of the internet?"

Home is where the heart is

Home is where the heart is

Alexandra and Piers' gorgeous marquee wedding was bursting with love and personal details. There's something so romantic about a couple who met at school, like Alexandra and Piers did. After being by each other's side for many years, Piers started thinking about popping the question. "We had a weekend away at The Norfolk Mead Hotel," Alexandra tells us. "After a lovely long lunch at a nearby pub, we watched England beat Ireland in the Six Nations Rugby. Piers was so excited that he got down on one knee when we were back at the hotel!"

What a day to remember

What a day to remember

Louise and Alex said "I do" at Nunsmere Hall on 5th May, 2019. Louise and Alex met at their university's freshers' week, but it wasn't until their second year that Alex managed to gather the courage to ask Louise for a coffee. We now cycle forward a decade, when the pair were enjoying an idyllic cottage holiday in Cumbria. Louise sets the scene: "It was 1st December and the weather was chilly, but we enjoyed some stunning scenery, crisp walks and typically, some beer." But, while all of this was going on, Louise had no idea of the plan that Alex was about to set in motion, one evening at sunset. "I was oblivious, and apparently, he'd spoken to friends about it and had even bought the ring well in advance. He waited for the perfect moment to propose – I was totally caught off guard," she remembers.

Timeless and traditional

Timeless and traditional

Charlotte and Luke opted for a classic-style wedding with a pretty pink colour scheme. Charlotte and Luke got to know each other online before arranging to meet for lunch one afternoon. "We'd been speaking for a few weeks and were confident from our lengthy conversations that we liked each other and had a lot in common," explains Charlotte. "I was attracted to many of Luke's traits including his work ethic; he's very family orientated, kind and headstrong too, which I loved." The pair hit it off immediately. "We both seemed to want the same things and clicked as soon as we met. We shared a similar sense of humour and for us laughter was and still is a key factor in our relationship," Charlotte adds.

Rustic romance for Rachel and Richard

Rustic romance for Rachel and Richard

Rachel and Richard had a beautiful wedding at The Wellbeing Farm. Rachel and Richard met at work in 2013. "Rich was assigned as my mentor, so we ended up spending lots of time together," says Rachel. "As cheesy as it sounds, we couldn't stay away from each other from the minute we met, and that hasn't changed since!"