Zoë and Hugh’s Wonderful Wedding Fiesta!

Zoë and Hugh told us that they wanted something a little less conventional when they chose Pickwell Manor for their wedding day, and as I love new ideas, I was so excited to work with them to see their wedding become a reality.

Hugh proposed to Zoë on the vibrant coast of San Sebastian.  They were keen that their wedding should reflect their journey as a couple.  This meant bringing the Spanish Fiesta to Pickwell Manor but with a twist of Holland (Zoë is half Dutch), a bit of London (where they met), and a good measure of southwest tradition (where they live now)!  

The Friday was all about decorating.  Zoë and Hugh are very creative and they come from creative families.  Here are their parents, Frank, Helen and Maya organising the favours - homemade damson jam - made by Rob, Zoë's Dad! 

    Meanwhile, Abi (Zoë's sister) made the AMAZING wedding cake, here she is prepping.

Creative Groom Hugh was in our apartment 'Bliss',  which temporarily become the arts and craft nerve centre!

Zoë, Maya and Rob were in charge of making sure the Ballroom looked colourful and happy for the wedding Zoë and Hugh had planned.

Here is the awesome Rob (Zoë's Dad) on bunting duty!

And then Kelly from Offshore Blooms arrived to put the finishing touches to the tables - planted herbs and the biggest hydrangea blooms I've ever seen!  The Ballroom looked beautiful.  Zoë and Hugh hired in orange napkins to fit their theme and these long tables to create the Spanish banqueting feast atmosphere.  But more on the feast in a bit....

On Saturday Morning....
Super Abi put the wedding cake together.  Zoë and Hugh had requested a "Naked Cake" - something honest and beautiful.  Zoë had sent Abi a picture of a cake which she quite liked as a guide...  No one knew Abi would literally recreate the cake...That's why I say Super Abi!

And voila! Here it is:

Kelly arrived in the morning to deliver the bouquet's all beautiful and fresh, as you can see - Zoë and Maya were thrilled!

And here is why, the bouquet's were stunning - such bold and bright colours, perfect for a late Summer/early Autumn wedding.

Hugh LOVES to surf. As a joke, he left his wetsuit hanging next to the Brides dress, for a split second I thought he might actually be getting married in a wetsuit!

Wetsuit removed, Hugh and his best boys went for a morning surf and at Pickwell, we got a first look at the dress.

                                      Zoë is friends with a hairdresser and make-up artist. 
                              They came all the way to Pickwell to help our bride get ready.

And then she was ready! Here is beautiful Zoë with her lovely and proud father Rob.

Zoë and Hugh really made every moment of their wedding meaningful and special to them and their families.  Zoë always said that her best friends would be with her, and walk up the aisle with her and Rob.  So lets meet Abi, Rishi and Baber, the bridesmaid and bridesmen.

And just before the walk to the ceremony!

All guests were upstanding for the Bride as she walked up the aisle to 'Chan Chan' by 'Buena Vista Social Club', played by the brilliant Jon Boyes a Spanish guitarist.

Zoë and Hugh had a beautiful and moving outdoor ceremony, married under our Rose Arbour decorated with their wedding theme.

Their guests showered these newlyweds with natural petals as they walked down the aisle together as husband and wife. 

I'll take a little break now and share with you Zoë and Hugh's Wedding invitation. We saw Hugh at work earlier in this blog, but here is their wedding invitation he drew!  A mini Pickwell!

It opens up to describe their wedding day:

As the invitation details, after the ceremony, guests were treated to an afternoon tea, complete with finger sandwiches and these scrummy scones.

Zoë and Hugh cut the wedding cake and soon after guests had a glass of refreshing Pimms or Corona in hand.

Guests enjoyed chatting away, sharing stories about Zoë and Hugh and catching up, with beautiful Spanish guitar strumming in the background.

There was a village fête atmosphere in the Italian Garden -  
Some guests took to Chess...

Others played Croquet... meanwhile others played....

We can see Zoë and Hugh's lovely photographer here in the background, Mark Gawthorne of Evolve photography 

So good was he at getting everyone together, a group photo was taken just before guests were called into dinner.

Before guests entered the Ballroom, they were able to see Hugh's hand-made table plan. I was very excited to see that Pickwell had become it's own tube line! Each table was named after a significant place to Zoë and Hugh. And as Hugh aptly put it, the underground only has fond memories to people who no longer have to use it - I would have to agree!

Zoë and Hugh decorated the sideboard in our entrance hallway for guests to leave cards of congratulations.

The Bride and Groom entered the Ballroom last to much applause from their guests 

The Ballroom was filled with cheer and chatter, as wine was poured.

And a beautiful sharing tapas menu was served.

Due to the sharing nature of the meal, I was unable to take pictures of each of the different dishes, so you will have to take my word that they were each beautifully presented and tasted like a piece of heaven.  Zoë and Hugh combined some crowd pleasers with some adventurous tapas.  It was wonderful to see everyone tucking in, trying and enjoying every element of the menu. Our wonderful caterers Guess Who is Coming to Dinner really excelled themselves.

With full tummy's it was time for my favourite bit of a wedding - the speeches.
First was Rob, who shared funny stories about Zoë when she was little!

Hugh's heart melting speech included a reciting of a poem he had written especially for his new wife. Literally, not a single dry eye in the Ballroom.

Best Man Steve continued the theme of making guests teary....  only this time, tears of laughter as he showcased some, ahem, hilarious photo's and a video clip of Hugh!

Hugh's brother Paul arranged a sweepstake on the best man's speech - all the proceeds from the sweepstake went to St Francis Hospice, a charity very close to Hugh and Paul's hearts.  Here the "high five" moment when table "Streatham" won!

After dinner, it was time for a fiesta - in the form of a Ceilidh.
Here are Zoë and Hugh performing their first dance!

Doe-sey doe-ing...

And then everyone joined in!

While guests worked off their dinner to the ceilidh, other guests discovered the Photo Booth props!

Just as everyone danced up an appetite, an evening selection of delicious local west-country cheeses were served for everyone to graze on.

The evening drew to an end, as our newlyweds danced their last dance,  and their guests clapped and cheered!

Zoë and Hugh, you have been a joy to spend time with and are a dynamic and extraordinary couple.  Your wedding has been a vibrant and fun weekend - one that reflects the kind, thoughtful and loving people you are. We wish you every happiness in your adventures together as husband and wife.
 Come back and see us again soon!