Hello oh wonderful ones,
I hope good weeks have been had by all. Right now as I look out my kitchen window the sky is grey and there’s the smell of pending rain in the air. Just in time for a four-day weekend full of barbecues and street parties (I have both planned), and quite a difference from the stunning ‘hotter than the Med’ weather we had last week! But hey-ho, it wouldn’t be Britain without a rainy bank holiday, eh?
Last Friday my Mum and I had a day of ‘wedmin’ related travels in the depths of the Kent countryside. The weather was simply glorious, and as we sat on a hay bale in the orchard of the wedding venue, I actually commented “I think it might be too hot!”. Yes, I have well and truly now shat on any chance of a sunny day for my wedding next year. Ha!
But it was lovely to get back to The Great Barn, having not visited since January on a sunny but freezing cold day. It was hard to imagine a wedding day without heaters back then, but of course this time round it was all about how to keep people cool!
With it being late May we’d missed the trees in full bloom but there was still a little blossom left on the apple trees, and the grass had been mown in preparation for a wedding the next day. I’m planning on hanging streamers from the trees to inject a little colour, but other than that it just needs to be filled with beautiful people and sunshine.
We had called ahead to make sure it was ok to pop down, and were warned that with a wedding the following day there may be decorating preparations in full swing. Fortunately for us when we got there around midday there wasn’t a soul to be seen; the only sign of a forthcoming wedding being a couple of gazebo roofs and some tables of props inside the barn. We were able to snap away and really try to get a sense of layouts and logistics which was very helpful.
The barn really is so beautiful in its natural state that I’m going to keep the decorations as simple but as striking as possible. The people who were getting married the next day had put some bunting up, and there were lovely little love hearts and signs hanging around the walls, but with so much- well- wood around, I feel it is too easy for all those lovely little bits and bobs to get lost.
I’m taking inspiration from this STUNNING California wedding which has me bouncing up and down on my chair with excitement. If you don’t think this is beautiful than there is something wrong with you.
There will be festoon lighting everywhere, and a multitude of colourful paper lanterns over the dance floor, but aside from the table decorations I think that will be it. Hard to imagine when looking back on those pictures of an empty barn, but I know it’s going to work. Can’t. Frickin. Wait.
One of the bigger challenges is how to make the back of the barn look good. The orchard is out the front and naturally very pretty, but the back is a little more… industrial.
The catering area is ugly but necessary. And as we can’t be out in the orchard once the music starts in the evening (too close to local residents), this back area will need to be used. Weather permitting we are going to have a fire pit which will provide some sort of distraction, and I intend to string festoon lighting from the barn to the bottom of the stairs, but apart from that I think I’ll be relying on myself and my guests enjoying ourselves far too much at that point to even care!
The other question to ponder is to marquee or not to marquee? With the entire day’s festivities taking place inside the barn, people will need to vacate the space at several points during the day for furniture to be moved around. If it’s raining… gulp. So I am going to have to provide some sort of gazebo/marquee construction (I hate marquees!) for around 100 people… Yes, there is still lots and lots to think about.
But it was lovely to go and see the barn in all its start-of-summer glory, and I can only cross my fingers and *hope* that Mother Nature looks kindly on us next year.
And just because I know that Paul finds it hard to imagine the barn decorated and full of people (hello Paul, I know you read this), I thought I’d share some images of previous weddings that have taken place at The Great Barn. So without further ado, here’s one barn done three very different ways…
1. Vintage lanterns and greenery galore in this super-chic wedding- photography by Wild Weddings:
2. A 1940’s RAF-themed wedding- by Neil Hanson Photography:
3. An informal and fun country affair- by Sara Thomas Photography.
I love this couples’ style and they did some beautiful things to the barn both inside and out- you can see the full wedding here:
It really is a blank canvas dream.
Have a fantastic Bank Holiday weekend everyone and if there are any Great Barn brides (or grooms) to be out there who might stumble across this blog, do say Hi. Would be great to share plans!