Ally and Benjamin met while sailing. "We're both quite adventurous, and we were instantly attracted to each other," says Ally. "For our first date, we went for a walk in the rain at Nash Point Lighthouse and ended up in Gwdihw in Cardiff."
Benjamin popped the question on 22nd September, 2018. "He took me away under the ruse we were having an early birthday trip," shares the bride. "We went to Saint Brides for a walk along the coast, recreating our first date, the only difference was we now had our beloved dog with us. Once we got back to the hotel, we sat down with a hot chocolate and Ben asked me to marry him."
"Within two days of getting engaged we had visited Holm House Hotel and knew it was the perfect place for us," says Ally. "The property overlooked Steep Holm where we used to race together, and offered amazing views of the Bristol channel. We had spoken to other people who had attended weddings there and heard really good things which helped make up our minds."The happy couple gave their guests fruits and nuts tied together with twine as favours."We decided to make our table plan," explains the bride. "We used a frame that my grandparents had given us. It looked great, and we loved the finished product."
For their flowers, the couple turned to The Lily Pad. "My bouquet was inspired by our grandmothers' wedding flowers," shares Ally. "We in corporated them into our centrepieces which were lighthouses decorated with sand and pebbles."Ally and Benjamin opted for a small cake. "My aunt made it for us," says Ally. "She used my grandmother's recipe, and it tasted lovely."
The couple hired a car from Ebony & Ivory Wedding Cars to transport Ally. "It was a lovely experience," Ally explains. "Ben decided to drive to the church in my dad's Mustang."
Ally chose a vintage Sassi Holford gown from Pritchard & Moore. "It had daffodils on it, which I loved," shares Ally. "I changed my dress for the evening reception and accessorised it with a jewellery set that my grandmother had given me for my 18th birthday. Unfortunately, I'd lost the necklace so Northern Star Jewellery worked really hard to recreated it from old photos."
Benjamin wore a morning suit from Young's Hire with a double-breasted waistcoat and the bridesmaids opted for lovely purple gowns from Amazon.
"We arranged for Music HQ to entertain our guests," Ally reveals. "James from The Trilogy played an acoustic set during the drinks reception. After we cut the cake he played an acoustic version of Oceans by Coasts for our first dance before being joined by his fellow bandmates for a fantastic live set. They kept everyone on the dancefloor long into the evening and were followed by a DJ."
"On the morning of our nuptials, we both felt special and complete," explains Ally. "The vows were very emotional,and we loved walking down Penarth Pier together. A little girl turned to look at us and said to her mother, Mummy, I didn't know that princesses were real." All their suppliers went above and beyond. "Our florist, The Lily Pad, was brilliant," shares the bride. "They made both venues look amazing and took onboard our ideas. Sian and the team at Holm House Hotel were also fantastic. Nothing was too much trouble, and we were treated like royalty. If anything went wrong, then we didn't know about it. One of our guests was alcohol intolerant, and accidentally poured red wine gravy over their meal and the staff were on the case immediately and a disaster was averted.
"We went to Riviera Maya in Mexico for nine nights," Ally explains. "We weren't going to have a big honeymoon, but we decided at the last minute to book it. We had a great time and managed to see crocodiles, stingrays, turtles and dolphins while snorkelling. The highlight of the trip was a romantic dinner for two on the hotel's pier."
"Book your photographer as early as possible and create a spreadsheet to help you organise everything." – Ally.