For Kate’s 30th birthday present, she got her dream proposal, following seven years together with boyfriend Steve. “Steve had laid out all my gifts on the dining table, the last present I opened was a Me-to-You teddy bear money box. At the time I was wondering why he had got me a moneybox for my 30th birthday! Inside I found a small piece of tissue paper with a ring wrapped inside it, he then got on one knee. To say I was surprised is an understatement,” laughs Kate.
Drawing up a list of wedding venues was the first of many lists the couple made over their 18-month engagement. Kate and Steve decided that they wanted a venue with a relaxed atmosphere and intimate feel. They quickly managed to whittle down potential venue visits to just three. “I fell in love with Curradine Barns as soon as we arrived. During our tour of the venue the curtain was pulled back from the ceremony barn to reveal the breakfast room - this took my breath away and actually left me with a lump in my throat!” recalls Kate. “I thought I’d have to convince Steve to book the venue after our visit. He’d never really been concerned about where we got married as the most important thing to him was actually getting married. But he said that the whole experience we had at the Barns blew him away,” adds Kate.
With the deal sealed at Curradine Barns, the couple began planning the style of their wedding to fit in with the neutral toned, airy nature of the Barns. “As the venue we had chosen was natural and light, we didn’t really need to do anything to it,” explains Kate. The couple decided to buy a few bits and pieces to enhance the venue, such as wicker hearts to place on the wall behind the top table, as well as small white lanterns to place in the garden and barn area. For the tables, Kate ordered some small, personalised table confetti from eBay, which said Mr & Mrs Miller on them in the shape of hearts. “eBay was a great friend throughout the whole wedding process. We also got personalised goody bags for the children from there which tied in with the barn décor, along with gifts for the ushers, page boys and flower girl,” says Kate.
For their wedding cake, Kate and Steve chose to have a tower of cupcakes, topped with a giant cupcake decorated in pastel colours. They also added figurine toppers – with Steve dressed in his Aston Villa kit – for a bit of personalisation. Their heart shaped biscuits favours matched the colours of the cupcakes and doubled up as place names. “The pastel colours of the cake and favours were pink, lilac, yellow and green. They worked really well with the style of the barn,” says Kate.
The couple had very firm ideas of their wedding vision and what they wanted from their day – so visiting wedding shows felt like more of a hindrance than a helping hand! “If you have an idea in your head of what you want everything to look like, then I’d think twice about going. I found that wedding shows only confused me and made me second-guess some choices I’d already made. If you have a blank canvas though and don’t know what you want, they would be fantastic for ideas,” explains Kate. Instead, the couple found that working with the staff at the barns was the best way to achieve their vision. “The staff recommended several wedding photographers who knew the venue well. Following their suggestions we chose Paul Willetts, as he had a relaxed and natural style. From the moment Paul arrived on our wedding day he didn’t stop working, right until the minute he left,” says Kate.
Finding the one
Whilst wedding dress shopping may a dream for most, Kate found the whole process quite nervewracking. “I really didn’t want to go! I went to one shop where I had quite a bad experience and came out of there with no confidence. But then I visited Bella Brides in Droitwich, and from the moment I walked in I felt at ease. The owner, Linda, gave me lots of advice and I actually ended up leaving with the opposite of what I thought I wanted!” laughs Kate. Kate teamed her white silk and tulle princess dress with limited edition Benjamin Adams shoes that had been designed especially for the royal wedding two years ago. “They were quite pricey but perfect for the day,” smiles Kate. Kate’s four bridesmaids had bespoke dresses made for them in pastel shades of pink, blue, yellow and mauve. “I found out a few months before my wedding that one of my bridesmaids was pregnant. As I wanted all four to be in the same dress, I decided to get the dresses made to order. They were perfect and were a lot cheaper than ones I had found in the bridal shop,” says Kate.
A Midsummer’s dream
On Midsummer’s Day 2014, the couple tied the knot with a civil ceremony at the venue. “On the morning of the wedding I was so nervous. I couldn’t even sit down - I’d never been like that before with nerves. I calmed down when I reached the top of the aisle and saw Steve. He was really nervous and his hands were shaking, which surprisingly enough calmed me down!” laughs Kate. With the formalities over in a flash, it wasn’t long until the couple and their party could enjoy their wedding breakfast. “It was some of the best food we had ever eaten. There were lots of compliments about the size of the portion and how nice the food was,” says Kate. “It was a perfect day spent with friends and family, creating memories,” she adds.
Kate’s top tips:
- Try and nip off and spend 10 minutes alone with each other. You will find that you’ll be chatting to so many people you won’t have time to enjoy being together
- Don’t worry if something goes wrong. It more than likely won’t, but if it does, relax. It’s not the end of the world, and to be honest, you probably won’t even care at this point!
- Enjoy yourself and remember the reason as to why you are getting married in the first place
Images © Paul Willetts Photography
To find out about holding your wedding at Curradine Barns, call the wedding team on 01905 670039.