The course of wedding planing in a pandemic never ran smooth, as they say, and Sophie and Kris’ planning was no exception. When they released the road map in February 2021 their wedding date fell on the final planned day of restrictions which meant another quick hop to a new date, but never the less their day at The Woodlands at Hothorpe was completely perfect. Their pink and orange vintage theme woodland wedding was brilliantly styled with hand made bunting and disco balls and the decorations were predominantly “vintage tat from around the house” and I absolutely adored the bridesmaid’s mismatched hot pink and bright orange dresses.
The Woodlands at Hothorpe have been extended since Sophie and Kris’ wedding to allow for a larger capacity while maintaining their scandi-vibes and intimate woodland ceremony setting. Same same, but better!
HOW DID YOU MEET?
We met at Reading festival in 2008, in a 7-legged race. Which on reflection was just 6 drunk teenagers tied together with gaffer tape. A few months later Kris took me on a date to a local pub, which just happened to be having a karaoke night. The Mariah Carey tribute act definitely helped the first date awkwardness!
TELL ME YOUR PROPOSAL STORY
I’ll let Kris tell the proposal story as I went into shock and don’t really remember it!
‘It was New Year’s Eve, 2018, and we were having a gathering at our house with a few friends. I had planned on proposing that night but I knew Sophie wouldn’t want a big show in front of people so originally I was going to pop the question just before everyone arrived so we could announce it later. Of course the plan fell apart pretty quickly, all thanks to our dog, Otis.
We were getting ready and I sensed my moment, but just as I was getting up to sneakily fetch the ring from my wardrobe, I discovered that Otis had peed on the bed. Not just a little tinkle either. It was massive – soaked all the way through to the mattress. So I spent the next half an hour cleaning up the bed instead of proposing. I had missed my shot.
Later on we decided to go and check on the state of the mattress. As I was mopping up the last of the enzyme cleaner, I thought, ‘Well it’s now or never’. I retrieved the ring and got down on one knee.
“What? Are you joking?” was the answer I got.’
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE A WOODLAND WEDDING AT HOTHORPE FOR YOUR DAY?
We really wanted an outdoor ceremony but couldn’t deal with the stress and worry that the weather wouldn’t allow it, finding The Woodlands with the most gorgeous outdoor ceremony space, and an indoor contingency option was just a game changer. We completely fell in love when we had our first visit.
AN INTIMATE WEDDING IN THE WOODS AT HOTHORPE
WHAT WAS IT THAT YOU LOVED ABOUT YOUR OUTFITS AND ACCESSORIES AND WHY DID YOU CHOOSE THEM?
I’d seen a picture of my dress on Instagram before we were even engaged and saved it for inspiration, so finding the exact dress, in my size at a sample sale was just fate! It meant I only tried on one dress which seems crazy to me looking back. I struggled more with shoes and ended up buying 3 pairs because I couldn’t decide, in the end I went with my heart and wore the bright pink heels with the big bow.
Kris tried on about 8 suits before finding the one, so he ended up having a more ‘say yes to the dress’ moment than I did.
TELL ME ABOUT THE VISION YOU HAD FOR YOUR WEDDING
We didn’t initially go into wedding planning with a colour scheme in mind, but once a pink & orange vibe started to happen naturally we just embraced it and went in fully. Most of the decor was just vintage tat we already had in our house, with the rest picked up at various antique fairs and car boots. I was also insistent on the disco ball aisle, because, well why not??
WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST DANCE AND WHY DID YOU CHOOSE IT?
It was Kiss Me by Sixpence None The Richer. We originally toyed with the New Found Glory version as they’re one of the very few bands we both liked back when we first met, but that version is really difficult to dance to so we stuck with the original. Looking back it really was the perfect choice, we even spent the first part of our honeymoon staying in a broken treehouse with a hanging tyre!
WHAT WERE THE MOST WONDERFUL PARTS OF THE DAY FOR YOU?
A post lockdown wedding meant we finally saw friends and family that we hadn’t seen for a really long time which was just amazing. The really relaxed vibe of the day just meant we got to have loads of fun which was perfect.
WHY DID YOU CHOOSE HANNAH HALL PHOTOGRAPHY AS YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER, AND WHAT WAS YOUR EXPERIENCE OF YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY ON THE DAY?
We chose Hannah because we really loved her natural and relaxed style, we both hate having photos taken so we knew we’d be able to get some really lovely photos without any awkwardness. During planning Hannah was a lifeline, always available for a rant when yet another lockdown meant wedding planning was becoming a nightmare, and on the day she was just perfect! Always there for reassurance when we had no idea what you’re supposed to do at your own wedding, but discreet enough that we never felt conscious of having photos taken. Overall the perfect mix of guest, wedding coordinator, friend & of course kick arse photographer!
WHAT WOULD BE YOUR BEST BIT OF ADVICE TO OTHER COUPLES PLANNING THEIR WEDDING?
Just do whatever you want and don’t stress and everything will be perfect. Oh and book Hannah, she’s the best!
Sophie + Kris’ vintage themed wedding at The Woodlands at Hothorpe happened with the help of their amazingly talented suppliers
Hair Ashleigh Hodges / MUA She Does MUA / Dress Eliza Jane Howell at Beautiful Brides Nottingham / Venue The Woodlands at Hothorpe
Cake Vick’s Kitchen / Catering Hothorpe + You’re Cool Ice Creams / DJ Indie Wedding DJ