In July, Amber & Ollie tied the knot here at Gosfield Hall, but this is not where their journey began…
“He proposed on 21st December with a box of personalized envelopes all stating 10 different reasons why he loved me.”
After any proposal, one of the first things to do is find that all-important wedding venue…
“We found Gosfield Hall during an Internet search, we also looked on their website and read the blogs. When we looked around the venue on an open day we fell in love and we also took our mum’s with us so we had different perspectives.
The driveway was so grand that we wanted our guests to be in awe as they drove up, we loved the flowers that were all around the venue and you wouldn’t need to pay extra for them. We loved the bedrooms all our guests would be able to stay in and the Rococco Suite blew our minds at just how amazing and grand the room was. We also loved the grounds, knowing that the wedding day was going to be in July we wanted somewhere that the guests could go outside and be in a beautiful location, with the lake and grounds. The dining room was also laid out in circular tables which is what we always wanted and after looking at previous venues we loved the set up of Gosfield Hall, how smartly dressed the waiters and waitresses were and the canapés and welcome drinks they had to offer. We are so happy we chose Gosfield Hall and all our guests told us on the day how amazing and special they felt being in such a grand venue.”
With the venue chosen, the next thing to do is sit down and discuss with each other what your budget is going to be, whether you would like a theme, what colour scheme you want to go for, who your bridesmaids and bestmen will be, the list can go on! This is what Amber & Ollie did.
“We spoke to our closest friends; I chose my bridesmaids and witnesses two days after the proposal so I had support with all the other bits. Ollie chose his Groomsmen around the same time. Ollie and I then sat down and worked out a budget for the venue. We didn’t consider anything else until we looked around the venues. Two months later we looked around Gosfield Hall and fell in love. From then we booked the venue, once you have a venue booked this helps you decide on the type of wedding you want, the type of suits and dress that will suit the wedding venue. With booking the venue too you have already budgeted for the largest amount of money you will spend and then you can try and plan your budget better.”
When planning your wedding, using different forms of inspiration is key to figuring out what you would like your wedding day to look like. This is exactly what Amber & Ollie did. Using different forms of social media, magazines, blogs can all help!
“We used Pinterest to choose the colour schemes for the bridesmaid dresses and suits. We also then started looking at Instagram bloggers and Googling people within Colchester that do hair and makeup. On Instagram it’s really important to follow the #gosfieldhall, then you can see what suppliers have already been to the venue so you know where to have them set up, the travel to the venue etc. I bought a few magazines but I found online and word of mouth was the best way to find your suppliers.”
With the venue set and the preparations complete, all that is left to do is sit and wait for the big day to arrive!
Amber and the girls arrived the night before and settled into the Lady’s Chambers, where they could relax and get excited about the day to follow.
In the morning, the sun was shining and the girls excitedly began getting ready.
Meanwhile, Ollie and the boys arrived in style!
Everything was full steam ahead now at the venue, with the finishing touches starting to come together.
“We worked really hard to choose our wedding cake, we went to Raluca Cakes and we had a fantastic tasting, she even let me try all the different flavours (gluten-free) we went for the 5 tier cake and had a picture of Ollie’s grandparents as we used their cake topper as our something old.”
With the boys having safely arrived, it was time to start getting changed and ready for when guests start to arrive.
With the boys ready, it was time to go downstairs to greet arriving guests and await the arrival of the registrars.
“Ollie’s suit and his groomsmen suits were from Abigail’s Grooms Room, all the guys went in for a fitting. The men that worked there really helped Ollie choose his suit and told him the colours that they had and we showed them the pictures of the suits that we liked from Pinterest and they were able to make them look the same. They told Ollie to have a contrasting waistcoat so he would look different from the others, this worked really well and Ollie looked great.”
Whilst guests arrived downstairs, the girls were busy upstairs in the Bridal Suite helping Amber get ready.
“For my Bridesmaids, I purchased some personalized coat hangers for their dresses to hang on which they were really touched by.”
“The makeup for my bridesmaids and myself was from a friend’s sister and she did an amazing job at my trial and on the day, my hair was also done wonderfully by Charlotte who I found on Instagram.”
“When I tried my wedding dress on it was the 8th dress I had tried on that day, I put it on and my bridesmaid’s and mum cried. Then I knew it was the one, the dress was actually chosen by my mum I didn’t know that until after I was wearing it. The dress was a perfect fit and the only alteration was to be taken up a little from my feet. My wedding dress was from ‘The Wedding Shop’ in Colchester. The women in there were so helpful and kind that they made us all feel at home.”
“Ollie bought me a set of beautiful silver and diamond studded heart earrings and necklace.”
“Our Bridesmaids wore blush pink dresses from Coast. The dresses had lace detail at the top and were off the shoulder. They were then tied at the back with a silky, pink ribbon. The girls were comfortable all day and as the material was nice and light the girls didn’t get really hot on the day of the wedding.”
“Our flowers were recommended by a previous blog and we also found on the Gosfield Hall hashtag.”
The girls were ready! All that was now left to do, was to walk down the aisle to Ollie.
Ollie patiently waited for his Bride… Unbeknown to him, she was already on her way.
“We loved the ceremony… We used the Grand Salon and had the large green doors open. We had Sam Ryder sing ‘Ed Sheeran – Perfect’.”
We are pleased to introduce the newlywed Mr & Mrs Patrick!
After the ceremony, it was time to start their welcome drinks reception
Pimms & Lemonade
Bottles of Corona
Buckwheat Blinis with Smoked Salmon and Sour Cream
Welsh Rarebit Bite (V)
Tempura King Prawn
Blue cheese crostini with honey roasted Figs (V)
Free range bang bang Chicken
Smoked Duck Croquette
“For our welcome drinks, we had Mojitos, Pimms and sparkling Rose’. We decided to pay for 3 welcome drinks per guest; the reason we chose far more was because we knew it was going to be a very hot day!”
“We found our photographer by going to school with her and also seeing her work at another wedding. She is a talented photographer who helped relax all our guests throughout the day; she took some lovely and wonderful pictures of our guests. She had already shot at the venue so she knew the wonderful shots such as the blue doors, sunsets and the Rococco Suite pictures.”
“Our photographer was excellent for taking us both away and pretending we were having a picture but actually she gave us five minutes alone together.”
Once all the pictures had been taken and all their guests were ready for their dinner, it was time to head upstairs to the Ballroom.
“A few of our friends have been married and they told us flowers on the tables for dinner is a waste of money. So we chose to go for the lovely indoor candle package that Gosfield Hall offered. It was a lovely touch that all our guests loved and they only cost £25 per table.”
“We bought some wedding photo booth props to put on the dinner tables with disposable cameras so our guests could take some funny pictures during the meal and also to break the ice with the guests who don’t know one another very well. We also bought some marriage advice cards that we put on the tables, which was fun to read the next day. To help keep our niece and nephew amused through the dinner, we gave them some colouring books, colouring pencils and stickers.”
“We also put pictures of our times together over the past 12 years on the tables to try and personalize them even more to us.”
Amber & Ollie then got to go and see their vision in the flesh, before all of the guests came and took their seats
Pesto Roasted Salmon
Served with Roquette Salad Parmesan Shavings & Basil Oil
Mozzarella and Rocket Salad with Tomato and Chilli Salsa (V)
Toasted garlic bruschetta, topped with rocket salad and slices of creamy mozzarella, garnished with tomato, red onion and chilli salsa
Avocado and Humous Salad and Toasted Pitta Bread
Ripe avocado, blended with chickpea tahini and garlic, served with pine nut and rocket salad
Free Range Breast of Chicken
Stuffed with Chorizo served on Sweet Onion and Potato Lyonnaise with a Roasted Tomato and Smoked Paprika Sauce
Traditional Roast Topside of Beef with Yorkshire Pudding
Served on a bed of Horseradish Mash with a Red Wine Jus
Roasted Vegetable Wellington (V)
Seasonal vegetables, blended and encrusted in puff pastry, finished with red wine and cranberry reduction
Strawberries & cream simply irresistible
Chocolate Fudge Brownie
With dark chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream
Vegan Pecan Pie
Rich soya pastry, with maple syrup filling and toasted pine nuts
After dinner had been devoured, it was time for speeches!
After the speeches, it was time to head down to the evening reception, cut the cake and have the first dance!
“Our wedding cake supplier we found on Instagram. We found her as we were looking through Gosfield Hall hashtag and was able to see a previous wedding she had done at the venue. We were very impressed with her pricing and the tasting.”
“We didn’t really practice our first dance, we just jiggled along to it!
We chose a song that was special to us and was easy to dance to. We chose’ You To Me Are Everything’ by The Real Thing. We danced for one minute and then invited our guests to join us. We did our first dance at 7pm and told our evening guests to arrive at 6:45pm so they could see the first dance and not miss any of the disco.”
What was your biggest wedding splurge?
“Our biggest splurge was the venue and food. To use Gosfield Hall was over £11,000. We wouldn’t want to pay any less than that as the venue was the best thing about the day and the food, drinks and accommodation blew all our guests away.”
What was your biggest wedding saving?
“We saved money on our flowers as we chose to use the candle indoor wedding package for our centrepieces.
Based on your own experience, give us some top tips:
“Don’t worry too much about the budget, you know hat you want and just make sure you research different people or look for recommendations. Try and buy something for the wedding every month so it doesn’t feel like all your money goes in one big go. Try and enjoy the planning and sort the venue first because then everything else falls together much more easily.”
‘If we could do it all again, we’d…’ “Not change a thing!”
After the wedding, Amber and Ollie then jetted off to Rome for five nights for some well needed R & R!
Wedding Dress: The Wedding Shop (Colchester)
Groomsmen Suits: The Grooms Room (Colchester)
Flower girl dress: Monsoon
Cufflinks: Not On The High Street
Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Coast
Mother-in-Law and Mother of the Bride: Phase Eight
Wedding Rings: Fraser Hart
Wedding Cake: Raluca Cakes
Cars: Andy Culhane – Rolls Royce
Invitations: Vista Print
Photographer: Elizabeth Jayne Roy
DJ: Gosfield Hall
Wedding Favors’: Mini Love Hearts (Amazon)
Videographer: Joseph Farrar