Karen & Warren
Back in January I received a lovely email from a bride to be, Karen. Karen and her partner Warren were due to be married in August, and had approached me to make their wedding cupcakes.
Here Karen answers my few simple questions about their love story.
Tell us how you met.
Warren sent me a message on an internet dating site after seeing my profile but as he likes to keep reminding me I supposedly took 3 weeks to respond as he says I was making sure there was nothing better on offer first! We finally met face to face a couple of weeks later at the Devon Doorway in Heswall and haven’t been apart since.
How long after you met did you get married?
We moved in together 8 months later after Warren gave me a key to his house on Christmas Day and then we got engaged 5 months after that on a cliff top in Monaco overlooking the sea. It wasn’t your traditionally romantic proposal though as Warren didn’t get down on one knee as he said he would never get up again (he has had knee surgery from football injuries!) and my first response after he proposed was “Are you serious?” but it is a moment we will never forget and always cherish. We didn’t want a long engagement so when we got back we started planning the wedding for the following summer.
Tell us about your wedding.
Our wedding was the best day of our lives. We got married at the Hillbark Hotel in Frankby on the Wirral. We looked at many venues but as soon as we saw Hillbark we knew that was the one for us as it is such a beautiful intimate building full of history with lovely features and has the picturesque Royden Park as a backdrop.
Our civil ceremony took place in the Great Hall with myself entering the room via a balcony to the sound of a string quartet so everyone could see me apart from Warren before I reappeared at the back of the room to walk down the aisle for that special and emotional moment when we saw each other for the first time. Warrens Dad and my friend and boss Steve each did readings and poems that they had wrote themselves about us for our wedding that were as equally touching as they were humorous and we even had laughter in the ceremony as I forgot my vows, Warren couldn’t get my ring on and there was sniggering when people realised I had to say “Why I Karen…” which in my Geordie accent was always going to come out “why-aye” but it was all just amazing.
After the ceremony we had a drinks reception with mojitos, pink port and tonic and beer (Warrens request ; ) and canapés followed by our wedding breakfast in the Great Hall and an evening reception in the marquee overlooking the park.
It was really important to us that we had a day that was personal to us and as I am a designer I was able to make the majority of wedding items myself which I loved doing.
Our wedding favours were personalised lavender birds as we have huge lavender bushes in our garden so the smell always reminds me of home, table names were designed like postcards of some of our favourite places with stories from the place written on the reverse, we had bunting on our bird cage seating plan with luggage tags for the individual tables and much, much more.
We were also really clear from the start what we wanted for our wedding cake. We didn’t want a traditional 3 tier wedding cake as we wanted something more creative and personal that people would really enjoy rather than just take a small piece of cake just to be polite and this is where the lovely Braidy came in!
Braidy created 4 delicious cupcake flavours of Victoria sponge, chocolate and caramel, lemon and raspberry and white chocolate which meant there was something for every taste and then beautifully decorated each flavour with its own design so the individual flavours could be easily identified.
Each decoration fit perfectly with our wedding design with beautiful flowers, love birds, heart shaped buttons and a birdcage. They were a major talking point of the wedding as everyone tried to decide which one to have or whether to go for one of each!
As well as the cupcakes we had a fruit cake on the top of the cake stand as this is a family tradition. Braidy beautifully decorated this with bunting to tie it in with the cupcakes and then I hand painted wooden figures to represent myself, Warren and our cat Smudge to sit on the top (we had to have Smudge at the wedding some way!)
Our day could not have been more perfect with delicious food, touching and funny speeches and dancing late into the night and all the time surrounded by our closest and much loved family and friends we are a truly lucky couple.
Do you have any advice for people planning their own wedding?
Do what makes you happy and don’t feel pressurised to do something that isn’t you just because you think it is expected the more personal you make it the more meaning it will have for you and the people who know and love you. Not everything has to be ‘perfect’ so don’t worry if there are any mishaps just enjoy the day and treasure every moment as it goes by so fast!
Massive thanks to Karen & Warren for sharing their day with us. All the best for the future.
Photographs courtesy of Sal Norris Photography.