Ten years ago, I got married. I was 27, which at the time, seemed really young to get married, compared to my friends who were mostly either single or a long way off heading down the aisle. It was a magical day – I mean, I know everyone says that about their wedding day, but it really was.
We were married at Solsgirth House, a beautiful venue with a ballroom, chapel and lovely grounds. There was a lot of laughter, wine drinking and a ceilidh. Then there was a disco (Beyonce, Crazy In Love was a highlight) and bacon rolls for everyone. Looking back, there’s not much I’d change.
Want a peek into my day?
The other day, I dug out my wedding photos and looking through them, I realised a few things…
- I married a good ‘un. If you can look at your partner and see your best friend, then you’re onto a winner.
- Great friends are something special, aren’t they? I’m still friends with everyone who came. Those friends are worth hanging onto, and making the effort to meet for a coffee or dinner, even if you’d secretly rather be in your PJs watching The Great British Bake Off.
- When I tell people I’ve been married for ten years, I feel OLD. But then I think ahead – in another ten years time, I’ll be 47 and the five-year-old will be approaching her 16th birthday. Suddenly, I don’t feel old. I feel like a spring chicken. Hurrah!
- I really should get organised. My wedding photos are still in the box that they came in, when the wedding photographers sent them to me. Maybe by our 20th wedding anniversary, I’ll have put them into an actual photo album…
- When I got married, I had no idea of the joy I’d have showing the photos to my daughter, ten years later. She LOVED looking at them, asking who some people are, seeing her (now 10-year-old) cousin as a baby and telling me how young I look (THANKS).
- You can put in as much planning as you like, with a wedding day, but it’s the people who come that will really make it special. Not the canapés or the centrepieces or the favours.
- Bridezilla behaviour fades into a distant memory. Pretty much every bride loses her mind a little, in the run up to the wedding. It’s like you lose a sense of perspective and the smallest of details (BUT WHAT KIND OF BUTTON HOLES SHOULD THE USHERS HAVE?) and do you know what? You won’t remember any of that, in years to come. Rose-tinted glasses are a wonderful thing.
- Trends and tastes change… and that’s OK. I look at photos of my wedding dress and I still love the shape of it, but there’s no way I’d choose something with a modern flower shape in crystals, if I was getting married today. Likewise, my wedding invitations and order of service made me do a small shudder when I see photos of them. (I haven’t included a snap here, but let’s just say white feathers and diamante feature… It’s all a bit TOWIE). And actually, that’s OK. Everyone looks back at their wedding photos and cringes a little, right? I’m just relieved I didn’t get married ten/fifteen years earlier, when puffy sleeves were on trend.
- I’m glad we did things our own way. We split the guest list in three – we invited a third, my parents invited a third and Mr P’s parents invited a third – meaning everyone had their important friends and family there. We also chose not to do a traditional receiving line, and instead, in between courses of the meal, we went around all of the tables to chat to everyone. It made the day feel more like our day.
- Going brunette for your wedding, when you’ve been a blonde for years, might SEEM like a great idea at the time (“It’ll look more classic in the photos!”) but you’ll just look back at your photos and wish you’d been blonde and more ‘you’.
Mostly though, I look at my wedding photos and I WANT TO DO IT ALL AGAIN!
All photos: Lighthouse Studios