Choosing the perfect wedding location can be stressful… but what if you found a venue before getting engaged? Knowing they wanted to get married Nat and Tom did just that. Here’s the story behind planning in an unconventional way.
I’m not traditional. I also like to be different. Thankfully Tom understands this and therefore we set about our wedding in a very unique way. We viewed our venue before getting engaged.
Now this may seem crazy, but to anyone who knows us it’s not. We have for years talked about marriage, when, where and how we would like it. Everyone eagerly waited as holidays and occasions came and went, nagging Tom about when he would “pop” the question. Little did they know we already had a few things in mind.
Having a flurry of friends who have got engaged the standard procedure seems to be diving into Pinterest immediately, doing a lot of wedmin and the stressing about finding the perfect location (and hoping it wasn’t fully booked). I knew I didn’t want that to be the way our journey started so set out to be different from the beginning. Everyone and anyone who knows me will tell you that I am, by nature, a very organised person. So organised that I knew where I wanted to get married for a while… it was just the case of seeing if Tom liked it and going to view the venue to ensure it was indeed “the one”.
We had always wanted to get married in Italy, and we have been to some STUNNING weddings there, but we came to the decision pretty early on that logistically, and for a number of reasons, it probably would be best to get married in the UK. At first we thought this would be a compromise, but then I stumbled upon Millbridge Court and it became apparent that this could be it. On paper it sounded great – it’s less than a 10 minute drive from Tom’s family home, it’s close to our home in London, catering is by Kalm Kitchen who are amazing and it has an area outside that, if we were lucky enough, could use to get married in the sunshine, just liked we had hoped to in Italy. Above all it looked like a great mix of contemporary and quirky barn style which we both love.
So one Saturday, unbeknown to anyone but us, we jumped into the Mini and drove to Surrey to meet the Millbridge staff and have a look around. The day was drizzly and grey, but as if by magic as we pulled into the driveway the sun came out. We walked in and Tom could instantly tell I was sold. And what’s amazing is give it another 5 minutes and he was sold too. What’s more I had been previously told that all Saturdays in August (our preferred day and month) had been booked, but to our delight one had become available… 18th of August to be precise. Driving away in the car with big smiles beaming over our faces I looked at Tom and he said… “It’s the one isn’t it?”.
When people get engaged the first questions most people ask are “When’s the wedding?” and “Do you know where you want to get married?”. Knowing that the stress of this had been dealt with was a relief – “Well yes we do dear friend… now let us be engaged for a week before we talk about it”.
Tom worried about this being a less romantic way to start our wedding adventure, but it actually worked out to be more exciting as it was just us. A little secret that only us two knew. Just us deciding when and where we wanted to get married with no opinion or bias from anyone else. As well as this, knowing that we had pre-planned took the pressure off the mad rush to get everything sorted the day after getting engaged. We got time to actually enjoy the moment, to take in being engaged and relax.
Your wedding is a special time and it’s entirely up to you and your partner how you want to go about it. Sometimes you have to break the rules and go against the grain to ultimately make the right decision… and that’s exactly what we did and I would do it all over again without question.
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Images © To Work or Play / Natalie Jahangiry Paper Studio