A relaxed, rustic tipi party wedding with a cricket bat exit, suspended floral hoops, and a paella feast, in Sussex – on the day coordinator: Devine Bride.
The couple had the venue over a few days for close friends and family to stay with them in the house for the duration – and so they could have a garden party the day after the wedding too, to make the most of the venue, the tipi, and all their loved ones being with them to celebrate! Which is always the dream scenario in my opinion, to be honest! Being married myself, it is so rare you get the chance to have all the people you love in the same place at the same time, let alone to celebrate with them. So I love it when couples really make the most of their venue hire and wedding weekend, it makes me so happy ❤️
Tipis are generally erected 2 days before any event taking place inside them. This is so the couple/family/team have time to set things up inside the tipi the day before, and settle into it, as it were. So, in this case, the tipi was erected on Thursday, the couple set up the tables and all their personal décor and stationery on Friday, and then the wedding was on the Saturday. This sort of prep makes tipi weddings quite chilled in general, as the couple and family and friends have the whole of the day before to prepare and position everything exactly how they wish. Meaning minimal set up and stress on the wedding day itself – win for everyone.
It was a windy but warm day in July. I arrived on site on Saturday around midday, while grooms’ prep was still happening in the main house. There was a quick handover from Jim about the workings and switches of the tipi, then they were off to church! The couple were married at the bride’s local family church, …and by her dad! So, so lovely and so personal – what an honour and such a special family memory on top of the fact it’s your wedding day! They then exited to a cricket bat archway made by guests, which made for some great and unusual photos. Meanwhile I was back at the tipi, making sure everything was ready and perfectly in position for their arrival back. Ensuring all suppliers were on point and any last-minute prep was done – as well as a few little details and surprises, like some champers on ice in the bridal suite.
The caterers ran the whole show with regards to the food and drinks, so there was a lot to prep for welcome drinks, snacks, ice to stack, paella to cook! I had worked with the caterers before though, so I had every faith and wasn’t concerned at all. I can highly recommend them and their team, they are always super slick and know exactly what the are doing.
The couple arrived at the main entrance to the manor house after their ceremony to a prosecco and scone reception, before sneaking upstairs to the bridal suite to have a quiet breather and a glass of champers together while the rest of their guests arrived behind them. I was at the front on hosting duties, ensuring all the welcome drinks and scones were ready and being restocked, and was directing guests to the card box and then through the house out to the tipi at the back. For those friends and family who had not already been staying at the house or been to visit over the days before, there was audible gasps as everyone walked out back to the sight of the amazing tipi! It stood tall at the bottom of the garden and created the perfect summer party atmosphere with the space in between it and the house. And it wasn’t long before a cricket match got going on the lawn!
It was the most chilled summer party with the most chilled couple, with a finessed catering team going at full power behind the scenes to keep everyone fed and watered. After many drinks, lots of mingling, games, and some photos, guests were seated for a sizzling summer feast. A tapas selection per table was served for starters, followed by a round of fizz for the speeches. Then it was time to tuck into the paella for mains, which went down a storm! There was a dessert course, followed by a tea and coffee station, then some mingling time while the caterers cleared some tables for the dancefloor, and I ensured everything was ready for the next part of the day – cake knife, candles, lights, glitter ball, and loos included!
We did a countdown to the cutting of the cake, then the couple rocked the dancefloor for their first dance to the live band, with the beautiful backdrop of twinkling fairy lights and foliage hoops. Guests soon joined them on the dancefloor, and it was pretty full all night thanks to a free bar, lots of cake, and a tower of cheese! Cricket continued, the firepits got going, and the rest of the wedding danced the night away inside the tipi as a magical golden hour set in.
The couple were relaxed, happy, and chilled all day – and it really showed (thanks to the fact they had a coordinator to help of course…! Just kidding, but I’m hoping that did help!) The thoroughly achieved the fun summer vibe they wanted it to be.
Wedding Coordination by Devine Bride.
“When we met Laura at a wedding fair just a couple of weeks after getting engaged I remember saying how “in our heads we want a really laid back, relaxed wedding where everyone has loads of fun and there is nothing too formal” followed up quickly by “but I think it may take a lot of organising to get that…” Laura was straight away clear about how she could do that for us. 18 months later and we had the most amazing day and hiring Laura to be the on the day coordinator was by far one of our best decisions. Laura was so helpful before the wedding and then had the day run like clock work making it exactly the laid back, fun day we so wanted. If you want the tipi/dry hire option then definitely book Laura. After our final run through of the plan for the day etc I felt so calm and genuinely said that no matter what happened I knew Laura would make it work so could just enjoy the fun bits. Thank you Laura!!! Xxxx”
Photos kindly from Curtis Bradley.
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