Jess and Sam

Jessica and Samuel Evans • Wedding Details

Bride & Groom: Jessica and Samuel Evans

Date: 21st June 2021     Photography: David Boynton

Wedding Style: A Relaxed Summer Wedding Day with Smoke Bombs and Home Brewed Beer!

Real Wedding at The West Mill Venue, Derbyshire

Your Love Story?

We met at Keele University in 2010; Jess had just moved onto the same corridor in university accommodation as one of Sam’s friends. We both still remember the moment that we first saw each other! As all good love stories start – we bonded over a Chinese takeaway, however Sam was swiftly friend-zoned for the next year until he got up the courage to get Jess’s number and ask her out!
Fast forward 6 years later, we are on holiday in Split, Croatia. Sam has brought a ring, managed to get it through security at the airport without Jess seeing it and is waiting for the perfect time to propose. Let’s set the scene – it is a warm June evening; we have just had a lovely meal in the old-town and are wandering around to find somewhere for drinks when ee stumble across a bar with live music. Sam could have proposed to a soundtrack of The Beatles, Bruno Mars or George Ezra…they weren’t quite right though. Next up is Africa by Toto; this seems like the perfect moment according to Sam as he pulls out the ring! Sam remains adamant that at the time he was too nervous to hear what was playing but it has made it an even more memorable and amazing memory!

What was your inspiration and vision for your day?

We wanted our wedding to be a celebration of our love with our family and friends. Our vision was simply to create a relaxed atmosphere that encouraged everyone to have an amazing day and night, a wedding to really remember; especially as we had been separated from many of our friends and family for the past 12+ months!

Why did you choose The West Mill Venue?

The venue really epitomised the day that we had envisioned. As soon as we visited The West Mill we knew it was the place we wanted to get married! We wanted a non-traditional, non-formal wedding day, and The West Mill certainly delivered! The industrial feel we felt would create some fantastic photo opportunities and we weren’t wrong. We also felt that it would be the basis for a day that none of our guests would forget. We both felt that nobody would have been to another wedding like ours. It is unique and appealed to us for several other reasons. Having different floors for each part of the day really helps the day to flow and meant that at no point did our guests feel as though they were just waiting around for a room to be changed over.
When selecting a venue one of the key things we were interested in was a no-corkage venue. We felt that by being able to supply our own alcohol we could personalise the day and really control the budget that we had allocated.

Did you do any DIY projects?

We kept our décor to a minimum as we wanted the venue to speak for itself – it was one of the reasons we chose to get married at The West Mill.
We DIY-ed our seating plan using a large wire grid and polarioids of us, rather than table numbers (9 polaroids – one from each year we have been together!) We also created and printed our own menus and signs for around the venue; downloading a fancy font onto Microsoft Word made it so easy! As Jess has a keen sweet-tooth, we created a DIY sweet table by bulk-buying sweets from a local wholesaler, buying bags and scoops from eBay and utilising our many mason jars from home.
We chose to serve craft beer that Sam brewed to really add a personal touch. We served an IPA, pilsner and a lager all brewed in our kitchen at home. All in all, that involved 3 brew days, over 120 litres of water, ~90 bottles and countless hours! This doesn’t even include the test runs to make sure that we were serving something that would be good enough for our guests.

Tell us about the details…

• The bridal bouquet, bridesmaids bouquets and buttonholes were a mix of wildflowers to give a ‘just picked’ feel, including: Tanacetum, wax flowers, gypsophilia, dried lavender and other mixed seasonal flowers and foliage.
• Cake: Gin and tonic semi-naked cake flavoured with Tanqueray gin and Fevertree tonic plus Eton Mess and Red Velvet cupcakes with handmade strawberry curd and meringue kisses. Delicious!
• Centrepieces: Log slices with gin bottles containing lights or mixed stems and scattered wooden confetti
• Welcome sign: @mallyscrafts
• Confetti: @dollzconfetti
• Personalised robes and slippers: prettynpersonal

What was on the Menu?

Let us firstly say how delicious the food was! We tried to recreate it at home when we were looking through our wedding photos and videos, but it is nowhere near as good!
We had plenty of booze to keep or guests topped up throughout the day! We served home brewed beer, as well as prosecco and gin & tonic for our welcome drinks. Our menu consisted of tapas style food which included baked camembert to start, and a range of traditional tapas dishes for main, followed up with a passion fruit Eton mess. With this we served red, white and rose wine. Finally in the evening we had a pizza party for tasty food our guests could grab without missing too much of the party!

What was your favourite part of the wedding?

For Jess, walking down the aisle with her Mum is going to be a special moment that she will cherish for the rest of her life.
Sam shouting YES at the registrar/Jess instead of ‘I do’ is going to be something we won’t forget.
Our first dance to ‘Baby I’m Yours’ was a beautiful point in the day, and we both got so lost in it, we then were shocked to see we had an audience of our guests behind us!
Finally, we will never, ever forget that Wagger had a bell….

Do you have any advice for future brides & grooms?

No matter how stressful it feels, it will work out in the end and if things don’t go to plan on the day, guaranteed you will be having too much of a good time to notice! A wedding is individual, don’t let outside parties influence what you both want your day to be. Ultimately, make the day your special day!

Can you sum up your wedding day in 3 words?


The Dream Team

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