Gus & Samantha: Real Bride Story

We got married at the beautiful and rustic Stone Barn in the Cotswolds on the 20th May 2021. It was our third attempt after two previous dates had got cancelled due to lockdowns!

We originally met at school when we were 11 years old. We got back in contact 19 years later and went for a catch-up pizza and have been together ever since. Gus proposed a year and a half later on a weekend trip to the Cotswolds. We love going on walks together and he chose the most beautiful location at the top of a hill with spectacular views and no one around. It was perfect.

When we first booked our wedding it was pre-covid and we just wanted a really relaxed wedding with good food, good wine and lots of dancing with all our friends and family.  

The initial wedding planning was easy. We had everything pretty much finalised before Covid hit, which wasn’t so great as we were constantly changing plans to try to fit in with restrictions. Ultimately though, we knew we just wanted to be husband and wife and that our family and friends would make whatever wedding we had the best day ever.  

We always wanted somewhere relaxed and romantic rather than too formal. When we visited Stone Barn for the first time we knew this was the right venue for us. The log fires, candles and fairy lights make the space so intimate and romantic. I could see myself walking down the aisle to Gus as soon as we got there. I also knew instantly what sort of flowers I would want, whimsical and delicate with lots of greenery. Saltford Flowers by Design brought this vision to life better than I could have ever hoped for with their beautiful bouquets and table decorations, and Go Wild Flowersv finished the look with the stunning central ceiling piece. When I first started looking for a dress I had no idea what I wanted and was very open to any style. I just knew that I wanted to find a dress that made me feel beautiful and that Gus would love.  

I visited 3 shops in total but when I got to Amorae Bridal I knew this would be where I found my dress. The shop is beautiful with so many choices and the owners are so lovely and helpful. I picked out several dresses to try on and based on my feedback of what I liked and didn’t like, EmmaLee and Janis picked out the Morilee Lizzie dress for me (style 8283). As soon as I tried it on, I felt tearful and knew it was the one. My mum also started crying so I knew she approved. I just loved how the dress showed off my curves and the train is an absolute show stopper! The simplicity of the crepe against the detail of the lace is stunning, plus there is the added bonus of a bit of sparkle and what girl doesn’t like sparkle! Whilst waiting for our second attempt we found out that I was pregnant. By the third attempt I was already 7months. I honestly thought that I would have no hope of wearing my dress and spent so many hours crying but Janis managed to alter it to fit my bump and I felt just as beautiful in it on our day as I had that first time I tried it on.  

The weather on the day was horrendous but we’d actually originally wanted a winter wedding so we didn’t mind. In fact, it added to the atmosphere when we were all dancing outside next to huge firepits in the rain and gale force winds. All of our guests have said they will always remember that!  

My favourite bit of the wedding was walking down the aisle with my dad and seeing Gus at the other end smiling and feeling our little boy kick at that exact moment. It felt amazing knowing that we were finally going to be husband and wife after everything we had gone through to make our wedding happen.  

Although our wedding wasn’t the one that we originally had planned and we did miss our extended family and friends, we both agree that we wouldn’t change a thing. We had the best day and celebrating with just our closest family was perfect.  

All I would say for future brides is that whatever shape your wedding takes, it will be the better than you ever could have imagined.  

Photography by Eve Dunlop Photography.