Barns are an increasing popular venue to host weddings. They can look beautiful but homemade, and add a lot of character. The things is, they are a lot of hard work. Barns come….well, looking like a barn. It’s usually up to you to add the sparkle and make them cosy places.

The photos here are from my sister’s wedding in April this year. The barn was beautiful, and had underfloor heating (a bonus with the crazy April weather we were experiencing at the time) but was an empty shell and needed a full day of dressing to make it look as great as it does in the photos below.

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The long tables featured white table cloths with long hessian runners (find them here) along with candles in jam jars, and flowers in a range of vintage glass bottles from a range of charity shops and friends’ houses. The day before the wedding, the ‘barn dressing day’ was a great opportunity to bond with our new family-in-law and enjoy some laughs as well as some stresses (father of the bride and father of the groom trying to work out why the old boiler that powered the underfloor heating wasn’t working).

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The bride and groom made 150 pots of marmalade as wedding favours for guests, and labeled each one with their name and the date of the wedding – find the jars here.. The names used were often nicknames and not the formal names used on the seating plan, which gave each jar that personal touch. The purple writing on the labels matched the flowers that sat along the tables.

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The flowers were all bought at Covent Garden Flower Market (open 4am – 10am Mon to Sat) very early on the morning before the wedding (much much cheaper than buying from florists) and arranged by family friends in the church and by myself and fellow bridesmaids in the barn.

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