Boho Rustic Woodland Wedding with Pampas & Cookie Stack Cake

Welcome to the utterly magical Crown Lodge wedding in Kent of Danielle and Dan. They were married back in the spring in an atmospheric and intimate woodland ceremony.

Their day was boho rustic, with twinkling lights, muted colours pampas grass, oh and a cookie cake stack. I know! So cool 😍.

Be sure to look out for stylish outfits, a Beetle car, the cutest pup and some delicious grub too. I was over the moon to see that WWW wedding supplier Entertainment Nation brought the live tunes to the bash too. Such a glorious day full of sentimental feelings and emotions.

Tasmin May Photography thank you so much for sharing with us these darling images of a very special celebration indeed.

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Crown Lodge Wedding

The Proposal

Dan and I were on a getaway in Wales, which is our favourite place to go together. This time felt extra special as we had taken our new puppy, Betsy (named after Welsh town Betws-y-Coed) with us. On the last day before we left, we were out for lunch and on a whim Dan decided we should visit Snowdon.

We finished up lunch, stopped in the bakery to buy cakes for snacks (essential!) and drove up to the mountain in the car. We found a car park which turned out to be a beautiful viewpoint! The bad weather (and our inappropriate shoes) meant that we couldn’t climb to the top, but we sat in the car eating our cakes looking at the beautiful views of Wales.

Betsy was sat between us, when Dan suddenly decided to push his chair back, squeeze onto one knee in the footwell of his car and ask me to marry him. I didn’t stop ugly crying for a good half an hour after – he even had to double-check the answer was yes!

The Vision

Thinking of our wedding day, we knew we wanted to break ‘tradition’. We wanted a day filled with all of our favourite things. If we were getting married – then why not?

Quickly we decided our food should be fish and chips (our favourite takeaway). It would nod to the relaxed atmosphere we were trying to create – the most important thing to us would be for our favourite people to turn up and just have a great time.

For our evening food we decided on a pizza van – again, the comfort food you need to get you through a day of drinking and a night of dancing (plus – it even set us up for the midnight snack and morning after breakfast!)

The vision was a day which represented us as a couple, laid back, comfort food-loving, great music, a little boho and surrounded by love. Despite the wedding going ahead in otherwise difficult circumstances (with COVID meaning government ever-changing guidelines) we wouldn’t change a thing about our day.

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Budget

We wanted to do our wedding on a budget – we were lucky enough to have help from both sets of parents, but we knew we didn’t want to break the bank. We aimed for £10,000, but we went a smidge over.

The Venue

We got married at the Crown Lodge, Wye. It’s a beautiful, secluded venue which overlooks the Wye Downs. The beautiful decor in the venue meant we didn’t have to do much ourselves to make it look stunning – everything was already there!

The staff were so helpful and friendly, and we knew as soon as we walked in this was the place we wanted to be married.

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Your Outfits

I (Danielle) was really worried about ‘the dress’. I felt so much pressure to find the one and everyone kept saying ‘when you know, you know’ – all I kept thinking was, well what if I don’t?!

Luckily, I found a beautiful little shop called Victoria Grace Bridal, in Canterbury. Run by two sisters Hayley and Emma they had a really relaxed atmosphere.

I tried on a few dresses which were beautiful but didn’t feel right for me. Then it happened – I found a dress which just felt like me. It was comfy, it covered me in all the places I wanted to be covered, it had the tulle skirt I’d always dreamed of (I could swish!) I knew as soon as I put it on that I felt like me in it – and that was all I wanted!

Dan, well, let’s just say he was more laid back! He bought his suit online (ASOS) only around two weeks before we were due to get married! Yes, I think I gained a few grey hairs from it, but we were lucky that when it came it fit perfectly and went in beautifully with our colour scheme.

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The Ceremony & Music

Our ceremony was limited to 30 people (including us). But, we wouldn’t change a moment of that. It meant we could spend quality time with all of our guests, properly have conversations with them rather than be whisked from person to person like a wedding speed-dating event.

It was quiet, in the middle of the woods (thanks to the beautiful location of the Crown Lodge). We used LocateToCreate to create a boho aisle out of vintage rugs and got married under a beautiful pergola lined with fairy lights and eucalyptus/pampas grass garlands.

We picked all of our favourite music for the ceremony. I walked down the aisle to an acoustic guitar cover of my Dads favourite song – What A Wonderful World. Whilst signing the register, all of our favourite bands (Scouting For Girls, The Kooks and McFly) featured!

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Your Photographer & Filmmaker

Our photographer Tasmin was amazing. We found her when searching online for a quirky photographer. Not being used to having a camera in our faces, photography was something we were both quite nervous about.

Tasmin really quickly put our minds at rest at our initial meet – she was so lovely and explained how she worked, which was exactly what we was looking for. We wanted someone to capture the raw emotions of our day, not someone who’d be forcing us to ‘stand there and smile’ and shouting at our guests to get in order.

Tasmin was perfect – not only did she feel like a friend and someone who I’d actually like to invite to my wedding, she had this superpower of being everywhere but nowhere – she got truly beautiful images of natural moments throughout the whole day, without us even noticing. They truly tell a story of how the day went and each one brings back the memories of the moment. I couldn’t recommend her enough and we will treasure our photographs forever.

Our couple shoot that we had with her was just as relaxed, and some of my favourite photos are of us walking over the Wye Downs, chatting and giggling between ourselves. She really did get it spot on – our photos are a true reflection of both us as a couple and our wedding day.

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The Styling & Decor

Having only 30 people I started to panic that our venue wouldn’t feel ‘full enough’. Although we never wanted a huge wedding, I started to worry that we would no longer fill the lodge and it would feel empty – a constant reminder of the wedding we ‘could of’ had. But – that’s when LocateToCreate stepped in. We asked them to dress our venue for us, for 30 people.

We decided on one long table so everyone could sit together. They ran it down the middle of the venue and filled it with eucalyptus and vases of pampas. It was stunning. They added peacock chairs and rugs to the corner of the room to make a boho, cosy atmosphere for anyone who wanted to have break from dancing, or sit in there for a beautiful photo. It was better than I could have ever imagined in my head!

We also hired giant, rustic LOVE lights from TippledPink Bars. They sat beautifully in the room, acting as a space filler and another excellent photo opportunity. The rustic theme fit perfectly with the venue and the day – we couldn’t have asked for anything else.

Dan being a graphic designer did all of our menus and signs himself. We did however use a very talented small business for our name labels, they looked absolutely perfect!

Our colour themes were neutrals, golds, lattes, taupes – with a pop of colour (dark green) for our 2 young page boys!

Our cake was one of our favourite parts of our wedding day – we’re not huge cake colours, but we have a really sweet tooth for cookies! Chef Dave created us a cookie stack of dreams! It was milk chocolate chip cookies, held together with a white chocolate-orange ganache. All of our guests went crazy over it – it was totally unique, something they’d never seen before – plus, it tasted insane!

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The Honeymoon

We’d originally planned on going to Santorini for our honeymoon, but COVID had other plans and our reservation was cancelled.

Instead, we bought it back to basics and went on a mini-moon to the Cotswolds. We hired an Air B&B and spent five days exploring the quaint villages and taking full advantage of pubs being back open, to stop and people watch over a glass of gin! We were blessed with lovely weather which even meant I was able to pick up a bit of sunburn!

Memorable Moments

The most memorable thing about our wedding is how happy everyone was. Guests and suppliers alike, it was the first wedding back after COVID for everyone. Everyone was just really happy to be back, to have a tiny slice of normality, to be able to hug (albeit cautiously) and just enjoy each others company.

I’ll never forget the sense of gratefulness that everyone felt just for being there, it was one of the most special moments about our entire day.

Advice For Other Couples

Looking back on the advice everyone gave me, at the time I thought it was so cliche! But now, I’d give the same advice to any bride/groom to be!

Enjoy the lead up to your wedding, try to take in every moment and really make the most of it. It goes so quickly and you’ll soon find yourself wishing that life had just one opportunity at a rewind and pause button.

On the day, take it all in – the best advice I was give is to take a moment to sit back with your new husband/wife and look at all your guests enjoying themselves – eating, drinking, dancing, catching up with friends and family members they’ve not seen in a while. It’s a moment which made me feel really emotional – and I find myself even now getting teary thinking back to watching everyone enjoying themselves just as much as we was!

Plus – make sure you eat your food! I had been so nervous in the lead up, I didn’t really eat much – and that is my only regret! If I could go back in time and eat all 30 portions of the food we served, I would!

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So stunning!

Danielle and Dan thank you so much for sharing your Crown Lodge wedding story with us, it’s been an honour to share your day.

Further Reading

The post Boho Rustic Woodland Wedding with Pampas & Cookie Stack Cake first appeared on Whimsical Wonderland Weddings.

Boho Rustic Woodland Wedding with Pampas & Cookie Stack Cake