Pip and Paul’s wedding is all kinds of cool.

It features a gorgeous designer dress (that was bought for a steal!), a very colourful wedding car, a rather big four letter word, and the best wedding present ever, in the form of a football star cameo.

It’s amazing what couples can do on a shoestring when they get creative.

Pictured to perfection by Photography by Clare, this quirky wedding is filled with personal touches and DIY details, that we think you guys will love.

P.S. We’re expecting a run on confetti canons after this one!

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Our Wedding

Our wedding was in my home town of Tring where I grew up and lived in for 23 years. When picking a day for our wedding we didn’t have a particularly special date, but then saw that the longest day of the year was on Saturday 21st June the day before Paul’s birthday 22nd June and decided to go for it.

We didn’t have much money to get married but in the end this focused us on doing things that were really personal and meant a lot to us and to our families. What you lack financially you can make up for in bucket loads in having lots of fun and personality.

You come away with having a wedding with lots of sentiment and a wedding that no other couple will have. 

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The Dress

Being on a limited budget, I already had accepted I wasn’t going to get my dress in a bridal shop.

I had looked around the internet for a lace fishtail dress thinking I would get a dress off Ebay or Gumtree second hand. I found it hard to imagine what the dresses might look like if I tried them on and wasn’t comfortable parting with my money without trying on.

I went to a sample sale to get a better idea of what things look like once on and there I bought a dress that was the opposite of what I said wanted! In the end I paid £450 for my Ronald Joyce ‘Phaedra’ dress – an absolute bargain.

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The Photography

Our photographer Clare had exactly the same tastes as us and understood what we wanted. No matter what your budget, having a good photographer can make a cheap dress look a million dollars and is well worth the money.

For me getting the right photographer was not something I was willing to compromise on.

On the day Clare and her second photographer Eneka were amazing, they blended in with the guests and took so many amazing shots working so hard.

This by far, was the best investment we made in our whole day. I managed to get a videographer from my work- I’m yet to see the video but we are excited to see the results!

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The Flowers

All the bouquets and button holes were silk-this was mainly because we couldn’t afford a florist but also practically it meant we had everything ready made in advance.

I managed to get some amazing silk flowers from TK Maxx and me and my bridesmaids spent an evening together making them.

At the hall we had real flowers from Tesco and CostCo and put them ourselves in vases and jam jars on the tables and around the hall. In all we cut our floristry bill down to £300, spending £220 on silk flowers and £80 on real flowers. 

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The Theme

Paul and I don’t have anything in common and have really different tastes.  I really like sparkly things and Paul loves his football team Notts County which have two magpies as their symbol. Magpies like sparkly things so we had a gold and blush pink theme with magpies everywhere-so in a weird way it worked!

It is hard to pick a theme, but the best thing you can do is look at the things around you first rather than wedding magazines.

Getting married on summer solstice also had a massive role in our theme. In Scandinavia summer solstice is an important holiday and having some Scandinavian family, we incorporated some of the traditions into our day.  

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Decor & Details

We made practically everything ourselves. We made old fashioned style football programmes for guests to read which had ‘the squad’ page which had all our wedding party in with head shots and facts.

We had ‘predictions of the day’, a page explaining all the table names and even a puzzle page at the back.

The only thing we didn’t do was the giant love letters that we hired – which, in the end, I’m so glad we did. It created a great focal point and was a simple yet effective way of filling such a big space. Also not having a photo booth it created a great photo opportunity for our guests. 

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The Refreshments

Our wedding cake was done by one of our bridesmaids Laura who did such an amazing job having never made a wedding cake before. We designed the cake together.

The cake was covered in white chocolate ganache with white chocolate moulded roses that she had made and painted pink and gold. She added gold leaf on to each tier and incorporated the magpie theme beautifully.

Most importantly it tasted wonderful with three different flavours, bakewell, lemon and salted caramel – something for everyone.

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Favourite Moments

We loved our wedding car by Karma Kars. Leaving the church and driving around with the cool breeze in our hair was simply magical and calming for both of us. We fell in love with India when we went there a few years ago and wanted to bring a bit of India to our wedding. The car was a lot of fun and created another great photo opportunity and our guests loved the fun it brought. 

Another special moment was during the speeches. Digging through some old photos Paul’s grandma had sent, I found a picture of Paul being held by his boyhood hero, Notts County player, Charlie Palmer.

Paul had persuaded me to name the table after his favorite players and I thought ‘wouldn’t it be great if we could get Charlie to the wedding and recreate this photo on our wedding day?!’ I managed to contact the club and get Charlie Palmer to come to the wedding in secret.

No one knew about this as I wanted to keep it a surprise for Paul and his family who are also massive Notts County fans. I arranged for Charlie to come in at the end of my speeches and present Paul a Notts County Stadium birthday cake. The pictures of Paul’s face are priceless and everyone that was there (Notts fan or not) loved it, there were tears and cheers from everyone. It will be a moment neither of us will ever forget and made our day so personal.

Charlie and his wife were stars, staying chatting to all our guests. Charlie even sat down and worked his way through the queue of guests wanting their programmes to be signed.

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The Music

Our first dance was Moulin Rouge version of ‘Your Song’, one of our bridesmaids organised confetti cannons to be pulled at the crescendo at the end which was fun.

We also hired Two Tone, who were amazing at getting everyone up and dancing creating such a great party atmosphere.

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Advice for Other Couples

Make your day as personal to you as possible. What you lack in budget you can make up for in creativity and personalisation. 

You don’t have to be creative to personalize your wedding. Draw your inspiration from you as a couple. None of us had ever made bouquets and decorated jars etc but if you just have a go you’d be surprised at the things you can do.

If you are going to make stuff yourself, be organized and make sure you have enough hands to help and hours. Time soon goes quickly and you don’t want to be rushing around last minute painting jam jars and making name places.

Prioritise the things you want to pay for, some things well are worth paying the money for someone else to do.

Most importantly have fun and enjoy it!

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How cool are this couple! Pip’s dress is just stunning, I can’t believe she picked it up in a sample sale, how amazing is she for organising such a special pre-wedding gift for Paul. It’s just incredible what couples can achieve on a budget when they put their minds to it.

Thanks so much for Photography by Clare and of course to Paul and Pip for sharing their amazing wedding with us.

Check out our archives for more Unique Weddings + DIY Nuptials

Photographer: Photography by Clare / Bride’s Dress: Ronald Joyce, Phaedra / Groom’s Attire: Next / Bridesmaid Dresses: ASOS / Reception Venue: Hastoe Village Hall / Ceremony Venue: St Peter and st Paul’s Church, Tring / Cake Baker: Laura Paterson / Giant Letters: Illuminography / Band: 2 Tone / Transport: Karma Kars