Crystal & Tom’s November 2012 Wedding at Careys Manor Hotel & SenSpa
“Francoise was with me until the last moment when she opened the door to the ceremony room… I was unable to acknowledge any of my guests because as soon as my eyes met my soon to be husband’s I didn’t look anywhere else. It was magical”. Crystal & Tom
It was the first day of my first practical placement of my student nursing career. He took me out for dinner, let me ramble on about my day and at the end of the meal, in the middle of the restaurant he got down on one knee, stumbled over the speech he had prepared and eventually asked “will you marry me?”. I cried, of course, and as I threw my arms around him and shouted “yes” the other diners applauded.
The Wedding Dress
It was the first dress I tried on. A full length ivory gown which had an unusual skirt in that it had a bodycon bodice to the hips and then a full skirt flowing out from the right hip and around. The bodice had lacing at the back and for detail there was a black band with a bow to the left hand side to offset the skirt flowing out from the right hip.
The Groom’s Outfit
The groom wore formal black trouser without a suit jacket as he is usually an informal dresser. He had a shirt tailor made with the cuffs, collar and a pleat running down the centre of the back of the shirt in the same ivory as the bride’s dress. He wore a black tie and an ivory waistcoat to compliment.
My maid of honour Sarah and I met at high school and no matter what has happened in life, (she has moved a lot) we have remained firm friends. My other bridesmaid Nickie was one of my oldest friends and as the groom does not have any sisters we asked his cousin Lexi to be our third bridesmaid. They wore 50′s style halterneck dresses in a slate grey colour with black flowers and a black ribbon tieband at the waist. The slate grey colour matched the groomsmen’s waistcoats. Our theme was monochrome.
The ceremony and reception were held at Careys Manor. The ceremony was co-ordinated perfectly from our very first meeting with the wedding planner Francoise and it was seamless on the day. The bridal party stayed at Careys Manor the night before and found that the hotel catered for everything. Francoise came to the room to advise me when I needed to meet with the registrars and explained one last time what would happen. I was nervous! Francoise was with me until the last moment when she opened the door to the ceremony room (the lounge) and I heard my chosen music. The most vivid thing I remember from the ceremony was walking in and not being able to acknowledge any of my guests because as soon as my eyes met my soon to be husband’s I didn’t look anywhere else. It was magical. The layout of the room, the privacy we felt we had despite the hotel having other guests and the flow of the whole day made us feel as if our wedding party had an exclusive venue.
Our reception was held in a gorgeous function room which has access onto the patio garden, which we took full use of for pictures, and the pergola was beautiful. The room was versatile enough to offer space and intimacy at the same time during the wedding breakfast. Our guests commented that they felt that they were able to see our headtable and socialise with each other without feeling cramped.
The room was perfect for the evening reception also, as it had a dancefloor, a sideroom which was opened for the buffet so that the buffet was not part of the main room and also another sideroom to offer guests a private bar. It is details like this which offered the sense of privacy we were so grateful for. We had entertainment as well as the DJ that the hotel provided and this was accomodated without issue by Careys Manor.
We chose calla lillies and white roses as our main flowers. Our centre pieces and the headtable arrangement included lillies and roses alongside “country greenery” which we requested to compliment the stunning New Forest location in which Careys Manor is situated.
We had a monochrome theme so chose white linen for the table and chairs and had black chair ties to compliment. We made our own wedding favours which were small black present boxes adorned by a white rose.
How do you feel the day went?
The day was seamless from start to finish. We were asked by another couple what we found most useful about the day, to which we both answered “how smoothly it ran”. There were no hiccups and all of the organisation was done behind the scenes. Nothing seemed to be an issue, including catering for guests with unexpected allergies, a seperate meal was prepared quickly with no fuss.
The transition from ceremony to wedding breakfast to reception was swift, there wasn’t long periods where guests were waiting for rooms to be prepared. The food was spectacular. After spending so long looking forward to it and planning the day actually exceeded our expectations. The only complaint is that it went too quickly!
What particular memories stand out for you?
One of my favourite memories was when the DJ played the song “God gave rock and roll to me” as the final song of the evening; everyone of our guests formed a circle around the dancefloor and sang at the top of their lungs. It was a moment which couldn’t have been choreoraphed, one of those spontaneous moments of sheer joy which we shared with all of our loved ones. Another memory was as we walked out of the ceremony room. We were greeted with Champagne and had a few moments, before our guests left the room to join us, in which we were able to just be together, as newlyweds, trying to take in the beauty of it all in front of the open wood fire burning. It was a stunning and overwhelmingly calm moment with my new husband, truly beautiful.
For more information about weddings at Careys Manor Hotel & SenSpa, please contact our Wedding Coordinator Françoise Gysemans on 01590 625204 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photography by Andy Wild http://andywild.net