“I was working away in Devon for a couple of days. On my way home Rich kept ringing me to see how far away I was, which was very unlike him. When I got home, I came through the front door and he was at the top of the stairs on one knee. On the stairs there were flowers, chocolate, prosecco and my great-Grandma’s engagement ring in a box with a sign next to it saying, ‘will you marry me Miss Tandy’. I was in total shock and I don’t think I responded straight away (i’m not often speechless!). Then after I ran up the stairs and said yes! Rich had been to see my parents while I had been away to pick up the ring and to ask for their blessing. Then my Mum made him pizza – he had a great couple of days while I was away!”
The Big Day
‘Our wedding day was split over two days due to the pandemic. We were originally due to get married in August 2020 and then April 2021. Unfortunately both weren’t possible in the end and so we had our ceremony at St Laurence Church, Alvechurch on Saturday 23rd October and our reception at Wootton Park, Wootton Wawen on Sunday 24th.
We wanted the Saturday to be very classical and quite traditional. The Church is Rich’s family Church where his parents were married and he was Christened. We wanted to keep the family tradition going and it was the perfect place. We then had a family meal at a local pub and we had the most incredible 1968 Rolls Royce to take us there!
For our reception we wanted it to be much more relaxed and basically a big party. It still followed a typical reception with lots of drinks and speeches but rather than a sit down meal we had a BBQ (even in October) and we tried to keep the whole thing fun! We even had beer pong and beer draughts, a puppet show for all the kids and sparklers!”
‘I think like a lot of people I was fairly nervous about going dress shopping. I went to Henley High school and I always remember walking past the bridal shop on the way to get the X20 bus and thinking one day I’m going to get my dress from there!
I started by looking online and found the designer Jesus Peiro and just fell in love! Then I realised that The Bridal Boutique Warwickshire did a whole range of dresses and it just felt like it was meant to be – that same shop that I used to walk past had the designer I was dreaming of walking down the aisle in. I went on the website to see what dresses there were and knew straight away that I had found THE ONE and was even more surprised when it was my size and in the sample sale. I messaged straight away and got booked in for that week.
As we came dress shopping before covid I took with me my Mum, my (now) mother-in-law and my maid of honour – I am so glad I did as I really wanted the moral support after feeling quite anxious. I tried on that Jesus Peiro dress first and then a few more after just to confirm in my mind it was the one for me – it 100% was and it even had pockets – so cool!
The team at Bridal Boutique were just amazing and made me feel so at ease, everytime we went back into the dressing room they gave me time to really voice my opinions out loud without the opinions of my party influencing me. I think I was lucky that all my party agreed that it was the right dress but I appreciated that moment in the dressing room. The team also knew straight away the perfect veil to go with my dress and again I chose the first one I tried. Their knowledge is just unreal and they have the best eye for detail.’
Why that dress?
‘I really wanted to have something that I hadn’t seen other brides wear before. Rich and I are of the age where we have a lot of friends who are getting married and I have always enjoyed standing out a bit. When I realised the dress had pockets, that is what clinched it! I had never imagined or seen a wedding dress with pockets and it just felt so different. I was also desperate to find a dress that I could easily move in. I have young nieces and nephews and wanted to be able to pick them up and dance the night away with them! I just loved the satin skirt and how it moved when I moved as well as the train. For the first time in a long time I felt beautiful and even had a bit of a tear in my eye!’
‘We wanted both days to represent Rich and I. We had little touches throughout that made it unique to us. Rich had his ghost cufflinks (he is really into Ghostbusters and paranormal stuff), our table names were NFL teams as we are both obsessed with American Football and our table centrepieces were propagation stations, a nod to my obsession of houseplants and cuttings! We had many other little quirks throughout the day, things we will remember forever.
My hair and make-up I really wanted to have different on each day so chose to have different designers. Both Amelia Bourne and Trust Salons at Wootton Park were fantastic at giving advice. I am not the best with hair and make-up, I tend to do the same thing everyday and so they were able to give suggestions based on what I was wearing and my concerns about my skin. I have a bad habit of picking my skin when I am anxious and they were able to cover my acne scars which gave me the confidence that I needed! The combination of my outfits and my hair and make-up made me feel like a queen and I look at the photographs now and am still just as in love with it all as I was on the day!’
Advice for brides
‘Try to enjoy every single moment. Yes it can be stressful but take a deep breath, make lists if that is helpful and always think of the things you are looking forward to and things about your marriage you are looking forward to as well. This may help battle the wedding blues after the big day. I know it is a cliche but it really does go so quickly. Make sure you take time to look around and take everything in. Also take some time as a couple, even if it is 10 minutes just to be together as the rest of the time you will be so busy trying to see everyone you may miss this opportunity!’
The Covid Chat
‘As mentioned above we split the day into two due to the pandemic and clashes at the Church and wedding venue. This meant that I was able to have TWO Jesus Peiro outfits. In February 2021 I saw Madi doing a sale on Instagram. I had dreamt of having a second outfit (perhaps a playsuit?) for the reception but didn’t think it was realistic due to trying to pay for a wedding on a budget. Then I saw the sale and a lace top that was just to die for. I messaged Madi and she mentioned that the trousers were due to go in the sale too. I couldn’t miss the opportunity and so bought them straight away! Madi was brilliant at responding so quickly to messages and I was so glad to be able to support this wonderful shop again especially after such a tough year with the pandemic.
I feel very lucky to have had two incredible Jesus Peiro outfits and since the wedding I have really enjoyed hearing which one was my family and friends favourite – it is such a mix!’
Words from us:
I feel so lucky that Ruth found her dress with us,we clicked straight away and also she has always been so supportive of the boutique. Over the pandamic our brides liking and sharing our posts means the world to us. Ruth looked fab in both outfits and the smile on her face is the icing on the cake for us