A quintessential English country wedding with vintage touches and a garden party was enjoyed by Staffordshire Bride Karen Adams and groom Mark Adams.
It was love at first sight for newly weds, Karen and Mark Adams. A close call for the two lovers as Karen, from Crewe had been using dating site, Guardian soul mates for four months and had just about given in.
As she signed on to de-activate her account in January 2011, new user Mark, from Stoke-on-Trent messaged her. It was a sign from the gods as the two met up and spent the evening wining and dining.
It wasn’t until 2:30am the pair reluctantly called it a night. Karen dashed off on holiday the next day for two weeks but the couple met up as soon as she returned and haven’t been apart since.
“It all happened quite quickly. We knew from the beginning we were meant for each other.
“We spent all our time together and on our six month anniversary in Madeira Mark popped the question. It was so perfect. We went for a meal at Reid’s Palace, a very famous restaurant in Madeira and then went for cocktails after, it was really quiet and intimate when he asked. I was just so happy.
“We went to get the engagement ring the next day and it was also the time of my parents Ruby anniversary so we got a Ruby ring to make it more special.
“Eighty three guests came for our wedding at St John the Baptists church in Keele on the 19th May. My favourite part of the day was walking down the isle with my dad. The church really is stunning.
“We had planned a quintessentially English country wedding with vintage touches and a garden party. The colour theme was pale pink and cream, it was like nothing else. Everything just went so well for us on the day.
“I knew I wanted a vintage theme and thought I would have trouble finding my ideal dress. I walked into J&J Designs and said ‘I want an ivory, all over lace, fishtail gown’ and they just pulled the perfect one out for me. It was a Maggie Sottero and I love it.
“Masquerade salon is part of Slaters and Angela and son Tim Blanchard did my hair which was beautiful. A girl called Lucy did my make-up, she did soft vintage make-up for me and it was perfect. Mark got his suit from Ted Baker. He looked very nice in it.
“We had our reception at Slaters in Baldwins Gate, Stafford. A vintage, open top bus was our mode of transport. It picked all the guests up from Slaters and took them to the church and then brought us all back at the end of it. It was amazing, we hired the bus from Midlands Bus Company and we couldn’t have had a better service from them. My cousin dressed up as an old fashioned bus driver – everything provided by the bus company and he charged one pound bus fair to everyone. All that money was donated to Macmillan Cancer trust. That was a nice part to add into the day because Mark sadly lost his dad three years prior to cancer and his mum had recently recovered from it. Altogether throughout the day we raised £180 for them.
“I went to the service separately with my dad. We arrived in a vintage Beetle car from VW classic weddings. We went back on the bus it was just brilliant. We all had a glass of champagne and it was just hilarious.
“We had an excellent photographer who is now, since that day a really good friend which is nice. We used Kim Shaw Photography and she couldn’t have been any better. We can’t fault her, everyone who came to the wedding raved about her.
“When we arrived at the reception there was Pimms and Canapes waiting for us and we had old fashioned sweetie bars for the children to be in keeping with the vintage theme.
“Slaters were wonderful with the decoration and making it vintage for us, they made it all feel so romantic. They also did all the clearing away for us the next day which was a bonus they didn’t have to do. We did nothing really. They made it so easy for us. I can’t rave about them enough.
“We didn’t have a tradition wedding cake; instead every guest had their own individual cupcake by Jo Hardy from Cinnamon Lane in Haslington, Cheshire.
“We had a Hog Roast in the evening that was sorted out by Slaters, they ordered it from William Perry Ltd in Eccleshall.
“I also went for a kissing ball instead of a traditional bouquet of flowers from W Lewis Nurseries in Penkhull. My mum had a kissing ball on her wedding day so I have always wanted one too.
“Blue Parrot is a fantastic company who did the disco - I also used them for my Hen do. We have two friends who are DJs, Jackson Cummings and Bob Leigh and we used them too. It was great because they all do different kinds of music so we had Motown and the 1960s, to Indy music playing.
“Simpson travel out did themselves to assure we had a great honeymoon. We went for 14 days. The first 10, we spent in Kalkan, on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey and then did and additional three days in Istanbul.
“Julie Bray and Cath Wheeler were the organisers from Slaters and they were simply excellent, they went above and beyond what they had to do and made our day so special. The atmosphere and attitude from the staff really was excellent.
“Some good friends of mine also helped make it the best day ever. Angela Crosse helped me with all the table decorations that I had picked up from vintage fairs, she also did the invites and thank you cards. Sara Morris handmade all the buntings for us and Rosemary Mason, kindly let us borrow her collection of vintage china, which I was so nervous about because it was expensive china she had from her mum. It really brought the whole day together and the extra details are what made it so special.
“We have been looking at the photographs from the wedding and reliving it. I just can’t believe how great they are. It looks like a fairytale and I can’t believe it was my wedding. We have been so lucky with the people we have met. They have all made it so easy and known what we wanted.
“I have never been as relaxed as I was on the day. I can honestly say I had no nerves, everything just fell into place and it was a fantastic day.”
Photography by Kim Shaw