A floral vintage style wedding with lots of extra special personal touches was the order of the day for Staffordshire couple Elizabeth Griffin and Robert Plant.
The couple, who first met at work, said ‘I do’ after six years together, marrying in a ceremony at St Giles Parish Church in Newcastle Under Lyme, before holding their reception at The Ashes in Endon.
A mood board had helped the bride, known as Libby, plan the event as she pinned images she liked, colours she wanted to be part of the day and words that inspired her, all helping to bring together the wedding she wanted with an English country feel, complete with tea served in vintage teacups.
Libby had begun planning their wedding after Rob proposed on Christmas Day 2010. “It was very romantic. He had put together an album of photographs taken over the years from holidays, nights out, going to Glastonbury each year and put it together in a comic book style.
“We looked through it and at the end it said it wasn’t finished and it had To Be Continued... like it would be in a comic, then he proposed to me. I was very impressed with all the work he had put into it!
“I wanted quite a vintage style, with a bit of a British tea party theme for the wedding with lots of flowers. I wanted it to have a country feel so we had bunting made. The Ashes is a barn venue so that fitted in very well.”
With the church and reception booked, Libby turned her attention to her dress and hit the jackpot on the first time she went out to look at dresses.
“It was actually the eighth dress I tried on that day, but I knew it was the one. I hadn’t expected to find it so soon!” Libby adds: “It was an Ian Stuart dress in a nude shade with a fitted bodice with sequins and lace with flowers on the skirt and a little bustle rather than a train that I found in Amy Louise Bridal Gowns of Nantwich.
“I had one of the flowers removed from the dress to wear in my hair which I had left down.” Kurt Geiger shoes in an exact shade to the dress were also found by sheer good luck.
“Rob and my mum both brought me jewellery. I had pearl earrings from my mum and a Thomas Sabo charm bracelet from Rob. My mum also gave me a sapphire, ruby and diamond ring which has been in the family for years. That was my something blue.”
Libby had a bouquet of roses and peonies with aromatic lavender and eucalyptus with trailing ferns for added greenery, which she loved from Helen Bryan of Wolstanton.
To add the finishing touch to her bridal look, Libby decided to have henna tattoos on the inside of her hands, symbolising everlasting love and fertility, created by Glittzy Henna.
Libby chose six bridesmaids for her wedding day, cousins Sophie and Emily Mitchell and Harriet and Flora Griffin and friends Sarah Burton and Ceri Roberts, who all wore strapless silk champagne coloured gowns from Coast. The groom wore a Hugo Boss suit from Pockets of Shrewsbury teamed with a grey and pink tie.
James Griffin, Libby’s brother, gave her away during the wedding ceremony and the groom’s bestman was James Barry.
In a twist on the usual wedding transport, Libby and Rob opted to have a VW camper van and two original style white cabriolet VW Beetles from Beetlebugs of Warwick as they are huge VW fans and have designs on a VW camper van of their own now the wedding is over.
During the wedding ceremony the couple chose a number of songs with special meaning for the couple which were played on the piano.
Libby walked down the aisle to Where is my Mind by the Pixies, had A Day Like This by Elbow to walk back down the aisle and signed the register while Unfinished Sympathy by Massive Attack, No Cars Go by Arcade Fire and Lithium by Nirvana were played.
“This had more meaning to us,” explains Libby, “especially the Elbow song as the words are quite poignant.”
In keeping with the wedding’s theme, afternoon tea was served when the guests arrived at the reception venue using a variety of vintage china sets the whole family had supplied for the day.
“We were hoping it was going to be hot so we had arranged for a peach and lemon sangria to be served along with beers for the men, but it was so cold and wet most people just wanted a cup of tea!”
Libby’s friend, Melanie Dixon, had also created a display around the guest book with photographs of the happy couple as well as having a blank canvas and paint for people to print heart shapes on to. “We made sure that was out before people had too much to drink!” adds Libby with a laugh.
The wedding photography was done by Diamond Live Images, a company put together by former colleagues of the bride. “They got a lot of incredible shots and really captured the moment,” she says happily.
The evening’s DJ was also an old friend, Chris Lawes, who she went to Keele University with, and although the couple didn’t have the traditional first dance, he played a mixture of music including soul and old school house music to keep everyone happy.
A friend of the family, Jenny Oates, made the wedding cake which Libby declared was ‘absolutely fabulous’. The Victoria sponge cake had pink, peach, orange and yellow layers which had the appropriate colour macaroons decorating the outside. “It was so different, she did a brilliant job,” she adds.
The reception also had a range of old fashioned sweetie jars filled with old favourites from the 80s such as sherbet dippers and parma violets which Libby says went down well with everyone.
As Libby’s dad, Paul had passed away suddenly in 2006 due to a heart condition, she chose pins from the British Heart Foundation as favours for all the guests.
Also cropping up throughout the wedding was the Emma Bridgewater hearts motif, which she felt added to the vintage style theme, as well as supporting a local Stoke on Trent business.
Libby said: “I was really nervous walking down the aisle but once I got to Rob it was like being in a bubble, just the two of us. It was lovely just taking it all in as we went through our vows.
Photography by Diamond Live Images.