Most of you may already be familiar with our lovely bride Leanne as we have been following her wedding planning journey over the past few months. Now that the big day has happened and we’ve received a sneak peek selection of gorgeous photos, I thought I’d catch up with her to see how the big day went…
Why did you choose to get married in Zante, The Mamma Mia Taverna in particular?
Mamma Mia offered everything we were looking for, the garden setting facing the sea and the relaxed reception area, the taverna. There was a lovely exclusive area for us so it also felt private. The venue itself isn’t in a busy area so we pretty much had the place to ourselves all day.
Did the venue live up to your expectations when you arrived?
The venue was beautiful, we visited for lunch a few days before the wedding so we could see it. It’s so peaceful there and the setting is lovely. It has a lovely rustic feel and the family that run it were so thoughtful and the food along with it was delicious. We visited on our last day too to remember the day and to see the family who really looked after us.
How long in advance did you book your wedding?
We booked our wedding around 15 months in advance. We were originally thinking of August but decided on May so that we could marry earlier in the day.
How many guests did you invite to your wedding and how many accepted and attended?
When we went to our first meeting we had an approximate number of 24 in mind however when we booked 44 said they wanted to come. Things change and there was 24 adults and 6 children which was a lovely number.
The bride’s dress, what make was your dress and how long did it take to find the perfect one?!
My dress was an Eternity and nothing like what I had originally thought I would choose. I looked at chiffon as I thought this would be a better type of dress for going abroad but it didn’t suit my figure at all. I think you have to go with what makes you feel good and although I didn’t think I would choose a big dress, that was what suited me. It was beautifully fitted at the top, with lace up back with a big skirt and additional hoop to keep the netting away from my legs. I bought the dress after around 1 month of looking.
The shop I bought my dress from was a prom dress shop that was closing down, they only had a few select bridal gowns and jewellery. Because it was the only dress there I bought it in a size 16 and had lots of adjustments done by the dress maker that helped out there, she did a wonderful job in taking it down to size 10.
Can you tell us about your shoes and accessories where were they from?
My main focus with shoes was comfort and I didn’t spend a lot of time choosing them. I bought them from BHS, they were just the perfect kitten heel with soft pads and flowers going up the top. I bought my tiara with matching necklace and earrings from the same shop I bought my dress from.
The Grooms suit, did the groom purchase or hire a suit? Or did he go down the casual route?
We both decided a full suit would be too hot so we looked at suits with a waistcoat. We decided on silver/grey and then the groomsmen made the final decision. They decided to buy their waistcoat with Rich’s being slightly different, they hired a shirt and silver/grey trousers which also went very well with the green cravat to match the bridesmaids. They all looked really lovely.
What about the bridesmaid dresses? What colour were they and where did you find them?
We bought the bridesmaid dresses before the cravats and flower girl dresses, this then helped to buy everything else in the right colour. There is a wedding dress outlet near to where we live and they stock lots of bridesmaid dresses in different styles and colours. We knew we wanted green and something nice and light so they wore a lovely long chiffon dress. We later bought our 2 flower girls their dresses and had sashes made in the same colour green but in satin to match. They were also from here and extremely good value in comparison to other bridal shops. The bridesmaids and flower girls looked absolutely beautiful.
Your bouquet, what flowers did you choose and why?
Oh my bouquet! What can I say? It was absolutely spot on what I had asked for. I sent a photo of one I found online, with roses. I couldn’t believe it when I was given it, it really was beautiful. I chose these because they looked vintage and roses are beautiful.
What was your wedding theme? And why did you choose this?
We chose vintage to suit the rustic feel of the taverna. I also loved the idea of the bird cages. We were very happy with the decor, we even had the vintage bike which we weren’t expecting to have.
How did you find the planning experience from booking to the big day?
Everything was very smooth and we were instructed what to do as and when. Me being me, I had a few things on different spreadsheets ready to do the final planning with Lisa, it’s nice knowing that you can do very little if you want to. I would say the only difficult part was getting our chosen music on to CDs but we were very lucky to have a friend offer to do them for us as a wedding gift. From arriving at the resort in Zante to leaving, the planning was fantastic, so well organised and stress free.
What’s your best memory from the day?
I cannot simply choose a best memory, from start to finish it was such a wonderful day. From getting ready in the morning with my chief bridesmaid, being picked up in the horse and carriage, walking down the aisle with my dad, being handed to rich to say our vows, the photograph time, cutting the cake, the meal and the dancing afterwards. It was just a lovely relaxed and beautiful afternoon/evening and we will cherish it forever.
How much did you spend overall on your big day? Was it on budget or over budget?
We had a rough budget in mind but we didn’t stick to anything. We are fortunate that with our work we are able to work extra when we need to. We have got into some debt but we did have a lot of help from parents too. I think including our 2 week 5 star holiday it was around £7000 plus the dresses/suits, rings etc and we are having a party at home so it will be around £10,000.
What do you think makes a wedding abroad stand out from a wedding in the UK?
There are 2 main things that stand out for me, one is having a lovely team of planners who ensure your day is perfect and organised, there was very little stress. The other thing is having a beautiful setting, the guaranteed good weather and the opportunity to be away from home and the responsibilities you still have back there.
If you love this idyllic Mamma Mia garden wedding as much as we do then don’t forget to share!