This week’s fun and relaxed beach wedding took place on the island of Zante in July this year when Penny, Oliver and their closest friends and family jetted off to tie the knot.
Today, Penny tells us all about the planning, the wedding day and the small details including their rather unique LEGO cake topper, enjoy!
Why did you choose to get married in Zante, Cameo Island in particular?
We chose to get married on Cameo Island as we wanted a beach setting without lots of people in the background and understood that most beaches aren’t completely private. Lisa then recommended Cameo Island as you can privatise the beach area for your wedding and there is no chance of people ‘photo-bombing’ the wedding photos!
How long in advance did you book your wedding?
We booked our wedding one year and a half in advance – we decided a beach wedding was what we wanted whilst on holiday in Cancun over Christmas 2012 and after walking along the beach one day we saw a few beach weddings and decided this was what we wanted rather than the formality of a church/country house wedding in the UK.
How many guests did you invite to your wedding and how many accepted and attended?
Lisa advised us that as a general rule of thumb for a destination wedding around 80% of the people we invited would accept and attend. Therefore we were honoured when 36 out of 40 accepted and attended the wedding.
We love your embellished dress, who was the designer and how long did it take you to find the perfect one?!
I had always said from the start that I wanted the ‘Alma’ dress by Maggie Sottero which I bought – however when it came to the final dress fitting I realised just how heavy the dress was even though its was chiffon based. I changed my mind last minute and bought a Mori Lee strapless dress with although it was bigger it had netting underneath which kept the dress off my legs and kept me cool and comfortable.
Can you tell us about your shoes and accessories, where were they from?
I really had my heart set on a pair of Diane Hassall ‘Daisy Hill’ shoes but Oliver thought £250 was a bit too excessive for a pair of shoes (typical bloke) so I found some lovely ivory lace sling backs in Next. However, they were only worn for about 1 minute on the day as 10 yards down the hotel corridor I decided it was too hot for heels and sent my bridesmaid back to the room for my flip flops. So you can imagine the “I told you so” from Ollie.
I also wore some gorgeous diamond jewellery which Ollie had bought me for my birthday.
Oliver looked great in his casual wedding attire, why did you choose this look?
We always knew we didn’t want a formal wedding so we decided to choose linens for the grooms party. They wore cream trousers and turquoise shirts which I thought looked lovely against the blue sea.
However I did struggle to find any shirts in the colour I wanted so we ordered them made to measure from a company in America. The worst thing about being so organised was that I ordered them last year and 4 weeks before the wedding my dad asked me where the shirts were from as he thought he might have put weight on (he said this whilst eating cake)!! He had put on weight but luckily enough I managed to match the shirt colour to a cotton one from Next, phew!
The bridesmaid dresses… What colour were they and where did you find them?
This was the first thing that we bought for the wedding. We only had 1 bridesmaid which was my daughter and on a shopping trip we found a dress in Quiz in exactly the shade of turquoise that we wanted so it was bought straight away.
Your pretty pink bouquet compliments your dress and colour scheme beautifully! Why did you choose pink roses in particular?
I chose roses in shades of pink and white as I just loved the look of the bouquet and we thought that the shades of pink would look really great against the turquoise blue and we got it bang on.
Did you theme your wedding?
Apart for the turquoise colour scheme we wanted an overall theme of relaxed, casual and fun.
Tell us about the small details, the cake, the menu the favours and decor? How did you choose these and were you happy with your choices?
When we started talking about the small details of the wedding Ollie’s first request was LEGO so we chose a lego bride and groom cake topper which looked fab on the cake.
I got our table seating plans from Ebay for a couple of pounds and they were lovely. They were designed like a book with 2 laser cut love hearts on the front – in the small heart we had the table number and in the larger heart I printed some of the lyrics from our wedding song (Ellie Goulding – How Long Will I Love You)
For the favours we had sandalwood fans for the ladies, and balsa wood gliders for the men and dinosaur style polystyrene planes for the kids. This worked great with our fun and relaxed theme.
We chose a BBQ menu for the evening meal as we again didn’t want anything to formal and BBQ’s are more relaxed and less structured. It was delicious!
We had Greek Dancers for our entertainment. They were fantastic and got everyone up laughing and dancing.
How did you find the planning experience from booking to the big day?
The experience right from start to finish was perfect. We both felt that Lisa listened to what we wanted and always gave us options, she even pointed out the pros and cons of all aspects. There was never a moment in which we felt as if we didn’t know what was happening. The team in Zante were equally as great and kept us notified of what was happening and when. The whole process was that brilliant I didn’t have one single bridezilla moment.
What’s your best memory from the day?
My most unforgettable moment was standing at the top of Cameo Island listening to our wedding music start to play and seeing Ollie’s face as I walked down the stairs.
How much did you spend overall on your big day? Was it on budget or over budget?
We were near enough bang on budget – we actually would have been well under budget if I didn’t buy the second dress.
What do you think makes a wedding abroad stand out from a wedding in the UK?
The atmosphere is incredible and the sunshine always makes people feel relaxed and happy. You can also keep the wedding as relaxed and informal as you like and keep the guest list intimate.
I cant put into words how wonderful everything went for our wedding. It was well beyond anything we ever expected. Both you and the team in Zante managed to create exactly the day we wanted, and explained everything in detail so that we both knew what was expected and when.
Oliver and I cant thank you all enough for making our day such a special one.
If Penny and Oliver’s fun and casual beach wedding has inspired you then don’t forget to share and leave us a comment in the box below to let us know what you think…
Ceremony venue – Cameo Island | Reception venue – Terrazzo Beach | Wedding Planner – The Bridal Consultant | Photographer – Story Studios | Brides dress – Mori Lee | Brides Shoes – Next | Bridesmaids dress – Quiz |