Eve and Matt's love story unfolded in a breathtaking celebration at Ashridge House. Their wedding day was adorned with personalised touches, from a homemade cake to unique table names ensuring that they truly put their own stamp on the day. Read on to find out more about their magical day at this wonderful Stately Home wedding venue in Hertfordshire...
Where it all began...
Eve and Matt's paths intertwined on Eve's final night at the University of Aberystwyth where they bonded over the fact that they were both southerners in the Welsh seaside town. The pair chatted for hours in the club and when the lights went up they parted ways to find their friends but not without Eve giving Matt her number. The very next day, Matt reached out on Facebook, setting up a Geocaching adventure and from this they knew they had a true connection! The following week they spent a lot of time together, knowing that Eve would soon have to move to London to start a new job. It wasn't long before Matt visited for the summer and rest, as they say, is history!
The couple were together for 7 years before Matt popped the question on the Ashridge Estate a place that they regularly walked and Eve had visited since she was a child. Once they were engaged they soon started looking at venues and discussing what they wanted their wedding day to be like. Exploring venues, Ashridge House resonated with them due to their personal connection and they also felt that it was fitting with their style. With beautiful ornate architecture and dreamy grounds it is the perfect location to say 'I do'. During the venue tour, they were informed that the venue was fully booked for a lot of 2023 dates but they had had a cancellation the day before for the 26th of May 2023. The couple were excited to say the least, since that would be the 8 year anniversary of their relationship. The stars had truly aligned for this couple and they knew that this was meant to be.
Once the couple had set the date for their wedding with Ashridge House they had just a year before the wedding would take place! Eve shared with us that she had a twenty-six page "Wedding Bible" which she used to help her plan and refer to in the run up to the wedding day in order to meticulously curate every detail to reflect her and Matt's love and individuality. It also meant that her suppliers and loved ones could understand her vision for the day and what a beautiful day it was!
Eve shared that the document meant that she could enjoy the wedding planning process and when they decided to change the colour scheme early on to suit their style more, it didn't cause any stress. They decided to change to a brightly coloured wedding theme which is very much on trend this year! However, the couple opted for this for a more personal reason, Matt is an entomologist (meaning he studies insects) so the colour palette they chose symbolised their love for nature.
A little illustrated bee became their wedding "logo" and adorned the stationary, whimsical wildflowers inspired the the floral arrangements and while each bridesmaid chose a jewel-toned satin maxi dress from the Galina range at David's Bridal, representing their unique personalities.
The Big Day
The day itself looked like it was straight out of a fairytale, absolutely magical! The day was beautifully captured by Steph Kiely Photography and videographer, ByLumiere. Ashridge House of course looked glorious, bathed in radiant sunshine, providing a picturesque backdrop for their photographs.
Eve got ready with her eight bridesmaids in the morning and was able to have a special first look with her dad before he walked her down the breathtaking stairs and aisle at Ashridge House. The pictures of this moment are stunning as Eve looks like a Princess in her Suzanne Neville dress and veil from Ellie Sanderson and we are sure she took Matt's breath away. Matt himself opted to wear a rented morning suit from Fogarty Formal Hire, with a waistcoat, ivory tie and pocket square.
There were 90 day guests and 130 evening guest who were treated to a wonderful day of celebration with the couple. The wedding feast was a culinary delight, meticulously prepared by the in-house caterers at Ashridge House. A four-course meal awaited them at the wedding breakfast, starting with an English heritage tomato tart, followed by a choice of roast sirloin of beef, braised shin cottage pie or an aubergine cannelloni stuffed with ratatouille Provençale and a pastry encased caramelised apple dessert which sounds divine!
The evening buffet tantalised taste buds with sundried tomato and buffalo mozzarella arancini, falafel with hummus and pittas, Korean pulled pork Harataha Buns, and grilled chicken swarma wraps. The children present were not forgotten, as they enjoyed a specially curated menu which included a mini knickerbocker glory!
The couple had a string quartet play modern songs in a classical style thoughout the day and the bride walked down the aisle to Madonna’s Crazy for You. The guests were also entertained with a live painter who, during the reception, painted all of the wedding guests on card which could be taken home as a favour to remind them of Eve and Matt's special day! The couple also had their friend Lee DJ a set and Halo Lighting set up an incredible light display with mirrorballs, neon poles and an amazing multicoloured DJ booth. Plus, they had a live saxophonist, Dom Plays Sax to play their second song and an hour set! Finally the couple had a photobooth from Boothhire UK in the evening.
The couple decided to have some bonding time ahead of the wedding and made their own wedding cake! They shared that it did take the whole day but we think it looks great. Eve then painted the wedding toppers and since she works in the film industry and Matt is an entomologist she added a little net and camera next to the figures too to make it more personal.
During the ceremony, heartfelt readings added a special touch. Eve's mother, Lynne, eloquently recited an extract from Les Misérables, while Matt's mother, Sarah, moved everyone with a self-penned poem which we are sure was emotive and personal for the couple. The couple thoughtfully included the rest of their family on their big day with framed photos of their relatives on the mantelpiece beside where they said their vows and Eve's sister was her chief bridesmaid.
From the bride
After the Wedding
The couple decided to go on a roadtrip around Italy (and accidentally Lake Lugano Switzerland!). They flew to Venice and picked up thier campervan before driving to Lake Garda, Florence, Lucca, Cinque Terre, Lake Como and the to Dolomites. They stayed in luxury villas and apartments, eating delicious Italian cuisine and taking in the beautiful sites of the country.
The Dream Team:
- Photographer: Steph Kiely Photographer
- Venue: Ashridge House, Hertfordshire
- Hair: Carly Cox Wedding Hair
- Wedding Dress: Ellie Sanderson Bridal Boutique, Beaconsfield
- Florist: Apple Blossom Flowers
- Videographer: ByLumiere
- Lighting: Halo Lighting (Chris Page)
- Photobooth: BoothHire
- Cake: Made by couple
- Bride's Makeup: She did her own
- Bridesmaids Makeup: Kirsty Louise MUA
- Second Hair Stylist: Bridal by Kaycie
- Flower Preservation: So Resin
- DJ: Lee Symonds
- Live Painter: SP Wedding Art
- Saxophonist: Dom Plays Sax