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  • Real Bride Diaries – Charlotte and Rob – Proposal, Tractors and the Search for THE Dress

    I love reading about how brides and grooms begin their journey to wedded bliss. Every story is unique, every couple handle their plans differently, I love the ideas that are bursting from their brains. So today we are joining Charlotte and Rob as they tell us about their plans for their wedding. They are getting married this Saturday and we can’t wait to feature their lovely country wedding on the blog but in the meantime, let’s see how they got on with their planning……

    Char & Rob’s wedding blog….

    Rob proposed to me when we were on holiday in Dubai, July 2008 – it was just perfect. It was a holiday of a lifetime and one which we will never forget; one day he left me lazing by the pool, he said he just needed to pop back to the room and get something – I left him to it – little did I know what he was planning!

    That evening Rob suggested we go for a walk – a walk I said! It was 40 something degrees outside you literally melted as soon as you walked out of the air-conditioning! Somehow he managed to convince me so off we wandered, he got down on one knee with the view of the Burj Al Arab all lit up in the background and popped the question – of course I said YES!!!!

    We always said that we would get married in 2012, nothing special about it – I just like the sound of it! My job at the time was an events co-ordinator, I was and still am a highly organised person whereas Rob is so laid back – I thought I’d be so particular about planning our wedding to absolute perfection … little did I know I’m completely the opposite!!!

    Planning started when we finally set the date on 10th September 2011. It was lovely. We went around to my Mum and Dad’s and Mum who was beside herself with excitement had brought a sign months earlier and decorated it with sprigs of lavender and hung it on the gate for everyone to see – she’d been waiting for us to set the date so she could do this!!

    I love Rob’s face on this one – he’s like Oh no what have I let myself in for!!!!


    To be honest we didn’t really know what to think about a theme and we are both really relaxed about it. I think it’s much easier to have one as you can really focus on what you need but we were easy, we sort of had an idea so when anyone asks we say “we want it to be relaxed, with a country feel, hearts, sparkly bits and a little bit French” suppliers sometimes look at you like you have gone mad but we know what we mean & I hope we achieve it! Very laid back though and we are OK with whatever!

    The Venue

    This was difficult – we both knew we didn’t want a big fancy stately home with funny coloured walls and carpets that you have to choose your colour theme carefully so you don’t clash – we wanted somewhere very natural. We started our search with purpose built barns which were beautiful but we just couldn’t find the perfect one.

    After coming home from another wedding venue we went over to my Mum’s and Dad’s to update them on the progress. They have got a couple of acres of land and asked whether we had thought about having a marquee there? At first we were a bit unsure but the more we thought about it we realised it was perfect.

    We both class it as home and we are very comfortable there, we are having a marquee in one side of the field and the cars will be parked on the other side.

    My Dad built the house where they live and as kids we spent a lot of time at the farm next door, their kitchen used to be my ponies stable so the whole place holds lots of memories.

    My brother Liam (aka Chez) & sisters boyfriend Dan are farmers, they have made hay on the land for the past few years, last year was the final harvest until the wedding is over. Dad is really enjoying getting everywhere looking spic and span for the wedding  – everyone is under strict instruction on the do’s and don’t of the land – we even have colour coded areas for what can happen where!!!

    This is Liam on his tractor harvesting last year’s hay – bless!



    Choosing a photographer was easy as soon as we met Jenny and Keith of McAvoy Wedding Photography– we met them at a wedding Fair in Crewe Hall last year, as soon as we spoke to them we knew we wanted them to be part of our big day. They gave us their undivided attention and something just clicked.

    They spent time talking to us about our day and what we wanted as a couple & how they could help, their pricing structure was also easy to understand which is handy when it comes to looking at your budgets.

    We both felt at ease chatting to them and the photographs were perfect and just what we were looking for – finally an easy decision!

    Pre Wedding Shoot

    Jenny & Keith were offering a free pre wedding photo shoot at the wedding fair – we booked this in there and then.

    We booked for them to come over to our house in November, it was freezing cold and very windy but never the less we were still excited! Rob and I were both nervous but as soon as Jenny and Keith arrived we were instantly put at ease.

    The shoot was fabulous and we loved every minute of it – you hardly notice them there taking the shots, its great working with 2 photographers as they each capture something very different.  Everything is so natural which is what we love – they even got the fishermen in a few shots!!!!

    After the shoot had finished we were so eager to view the photos, we went over to their house for a brew and viewed the images in a beautiful room with a huge screen – they were all perfect – better than we could have wished for and I wanted every single one of them!!

    The pre wedding shoot was a great opportunity to watch how they work, even the viewing of your photographs is lovely, and something to look forward to after the big day is over!

    The below is our favourite – we both have it on our desks at work…awwww!!


    Wedding shows

    If there was a wedding fair in the local area to go to me and my Mum were there!! We have searched high and low for stationery, dresses, suits, cars you name it we know of it!!!

    Some of them can be brilliant and some can be terrible!  Tatton Park was fabulous – the catwalk is something else and those men are HOT! It was a really good day out and I would recommend for any bride to be to go and check it out.

    I took Rob to his first wedding show late last year, we went to Carden Park in Chester– he HATED it!! He just couldn’t get to grips with people pouncing on him trying to sell him their product – to be fair it was one of the worse ones that I have been to for people doing this so I couldn’t help but agree with him!! He was glad to leave but I did manage to drag him to a few others afterwards!

    I have found in the whole I have picked up ideas rather than suppliers.

    The Dress

    Well – I don’t really know where to start on this one! My search started in October 2011 and was still continuing 8 MONTHS later!!! I can honestly say I have looked too hard but I have exerted all avenues and now know what suits me and what doesn’t!

    I would class myself as quite a decisive person (Rob would say different) but for my dress I have been a complete nightmare!! At least I can admit it! I have lost count of the endless number of shops I have been in and the endless numbers of dresses I have tried on – when I tell family and friends they look at me in astonishment with the number I have tried on and how long I looked!

    At first we used to laugh about it with friends and family then when I saw them they are worried for me – I kept saying there’s nothing to worry about and it’ll all come good in the end!

    I have tried big ones, little ones, fishtails ones, one’s with frilly bits, plain ones, sparkly ones – you name it I’ve tried it but I didn’t found ‘THE ONE’, I believed there was a dress out for me somewhere but I didn’t believe it will be perfect as soon as I put it on as the shop assistants always tell you.

    My search took me to Stockport– I walked in to a shop and could instantly see there was nothing in there for me! There was a lady in there with her daughter and they were trying bridesmaid dresses on, her wedding was the week after mine. The other Mum must have seen the look on my face and called me over – she said ‘pist, you come over here’ I looked at my Mum who gave me a reassuring nudge so I went over ‘can I help you’ I said! ‘I can see there is nothing in here for you’ replied the lady and with this she stuffed a business card into my hand ‘call this man, he will sort you out, he’s amazing’ she said. The shop owner could see there was something going on so I shuffled back over to the other side of the shop and on that note left!

    When we got back in the car I looked at the card she had given me and it was for a guy called Slim Chadwick a bespoke dress maker based inCheshire– I am a big believer in fate and thought what the hell – I’ll give him a call!

    I spoke to Slim and told him my story of trying on endless dresses in all different style, shapes and sizes, he booked me an appointment and I went over to see him – thank goodness I did!

    He talked to me about what I wanted and what I didn’t want, he then asked me to try on one of his sample creations – it fit me perfectly and was so comfortable – as soon as I met him I knew he was the man who could make me my dream dress – he is coming later on this week with swatches and some sketches – I can’t wait…watch this space!!!

     Well I don’t know about you but I can’t wait to see what a “country, French, sparkly wedding looks like” and love the fact that Charlotte held out for that perfect dress. Do you want to be a real bride on the blog? We would love to hear your story. After all, it’s your blog so get involved xx

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