What are the best things about having a marquee for your wedding venue? It has to be that it opens up a whole new selection of locations for your day and is a blank canvas to work on. Helen and Ross held their reception in the picturesque Garey Ny Cloie gardens in St Johns, in a marquee full of personal DIY touches, and fun for all the guests! We chatted to beautiful Bride Helen to find out more….
First of all, how did you meet and what was the proposal like?
We met in work initially though we didn’t get together until we no longer worked together. Since then we’ve not looked back and have lived together for some time and have been travelling together which was just incredible.
For the proposal, Ross asked me to go for a walk one evening and we walked around one of my favourite places, Peel Castle. Unknown to me he had arranged for us to go into the castle after hours and as we entered I was met by a pathway of tealights leading me up to the old chapel where he popped the question. Needless to say, I was very emotional and didn’t hesitate to say yes! (Follow this link to see their cute engagement shoot on Fenella Beach over on Jewell.’s blog)
What was the inspiration for your wedding day?
We just wanted to enjoy ourselves and to create an amazing atmosphere for our guests with memorable food and lots to drink!
We love to walk in Garey ny Cloie as they’re really beautiful gardens and we both loved the idea of having our reception there.
Did you have Hen and Stag parties?
Yes, the hen-do was in Bristol and the stag-do in Sofia. We both had a really amazing time and have to say a big thank you to our friends for organising them.
Where did you find your beautiful dress? How did you know it was ‘the one’?
The dress was from Belles and Bows in Castletown, it was the first dress I picked out and I loved it!
What about shoes and accessories?
I found some gorgeous lace shoes and borrowed my Mother in law’s pearl bracelet. I also wore a Manx tartan garter and a pearl and crystal hair slide.
What did your Bridesmaids wear?
The flower girls wore ivory dresses embellished with flowers and butterflies and with burgundy sashes and my bridesmaid wore a burgundy dress, also from Belles and Bows, with a keyhole back.
What did Ross and his Groomsmen wear?
We bought navy suits with grey waistcoats and burgundy ties as we wanted a more modern and classy look. The buttonholes were red roses entwined with golden wire as we wanted them to look elegant.
Where did you buy your wedding rings from?
We bought the wedding rings from Wilkins and chose them together. They each have our wedding date and the three legs of Man emblem engraved inside.
Tell us about your flowers?
The flowers were gorgeous and were put together by Heidi and her team at the Flower Studio. My Bridesmaid and I carried tied posies of roses, dahlias and calla lilies and the flower girls had flowers for their hair.
We handmade white organza bows for the church pews which we passed on to Heidi to add red roses to and put in place at the church.
Our table centres were white lanterns sitting on a moss-covered bed adorned with beautiful flowers all in our colour scheme.
What other decor did you have in the marquee?
The table names were all places around the world we have visited and we designed and made chalkboard signs for each with the help of our family.
We also made signs for the sweet and cheese tables and a drinks board for the bar, again in a chalkboard style.
I also handmade the bunting in our colour scheme, which we draped around the bar area and along the front of the top table.
The gardens outside had up lighting into the trees and fairy lights going over the bridges which looked beautiful. We also handmade little candlelit (battery operated) jars tied with ribbon which we hung in the trees.
What was the wedding cake like?
We opted for cupcakes with three different designs and flavours and a larger cake on the top of the stand with a beautiful burgundy coloured sugar flower on the top.
What other handmade or DIY items did you have?
I handmade the orders of service in a similar colour scheme to our invites which were a chalkboard style. We used black card and white embellishments and tied them together with twine.
The table plan was a large canvas map with our table names attached printed on luggage tags.
We also created his and hers cocktails with the help of our caterers, Harbour Lights. These went down very well!
In fact, Harbour Lights also did an incredible spread for us and allowed us to create some amazing food which even included dessert trays with chocolate bombs, pina colada pannacotta, gin & tonic cheesecake, edible flowers and dry ice!
How did you keep your guests entertained?
We had a bouncy castle which seemed to go down as well with the adults as it did the children.
In the evening we had a band, the awesome Caution Runners, and they also did DJ sets in between their own sets for us. All our guests loved them.
We also had the MirrorMann which is essentially a photo booth but instead standing in front of a mirror. This was great fun!
Did you have transport to get you to your venues?
One of the groomsmen drove them in his old classic Mercedes and we put a ribbon on a BMW belonging to a friend of my Dad’s (and wedding guest) who drove myself and my Dad to the church.
Tell us about the highlights of your day – what was the most emotional part?
My Dad walking me down the aisle to Ross and me struggling to get the words out for my vows.
Looking into each other’s eyes during the ceremony
Trying to bounce on the bouncy castle in my dress and watching the groomsmen and friends wreaking havoc on it.
Ross was at the venue the morning of the wedding with some of our incredible friends putting together the final touches to the decor and tables
We loved the day and it went too fast but one highlight was our sparkler ‘tunnel’ in the evening.
Helen’s Top Tips!
- Our best idea was the bouncy castle and MirrorMann photos. They were great fun for the kids and adults alike.
- Our best money-saving idea was to make a lot of the decor ourselves. We saved a lot of money and made it seem more personal. We also saved a lot by doing the legwork setting the venue up. Another money saver was putting ribbons on nice cars belonging to friends rather than hiring them.
- My best piece of advice for someone planning a wedding is to make to do lists and budgets and keep on top of what you’re spending.
And last but not least, did you go on honeymoon?
We went to Hawaii and we absolutely loved it. We hope to go back as a treat for our First Anniversary! We also stopped at New York on the way which was a fabulous city.
Check out the people and businesses below that helped to make this day so much fun for Helen and Ross and there are even more beautiful images from Jewell in the gallery. Thank you, Mr and Mrs Berry for sharing your wonderful wedding with us.
Helen & Ross’s Wedding Dream Team
Photographer: Sarah and Richie at Jewell. (They were fantastic – we can’t recommend them enough!)
Bride’s Dress: Belles & Bows
Bride’s Shoes: Pink by Paradox London
Bridesmaid’s Dress: Belles & Bows
Flower Girls: BHS
Cake: The Cake Studio
Ceremony Venue: Royal Chapel, St Johns.
Caterers: Harbour Lights
Flowers: The Flower Studio
Groom: Ted Baker at Moss Bros
Hair: Abbey at Utopia
Makeup: Daniella at Purite
Marquee & Lighting: Switched On Events
Music: Caution Runners
Reception Venue: Garey ny Cloie
Gallery (click on the thumbnails to see the full picture)