We’re starting our month with a beautiful real wedding on the Greek Island of Santorini!
Emma and Craig chose this stunning destination as the location for their wedding celebrations and on the 21st of July 2018 said their I do’s against the caldera surrounded by their nearest and dearest.
Over to Emma who is sharing all of the special details with us….
Why did you choose to get married in Santorini, Santorini Gem in particular?
One of Craig’s colleagues had previously been married there, and mentioned it to Craig. Before that neither of us had actually heard of Santorini. As soon as we looked into it and seen all the beautiful photos and how picturesque it was we knew it was the perfect place for our wedding. In all honesty Santorini Gem wasn’t our first choice, we originally decided to book with Sunset View Terrace, but for reasons out of our control we had to change venues. I am so glad we did because Santorini Gem was just perfect!! The venue and the views were breathtaking, and the day ran so smoothly thanks to all the staff and the effort they put in to making it so perfect for us, they were amazing!!
How long in advance did you book your wedding?
I think we began to make enquiries around the end of 2015 and then we finally booked and paid deposits in the beginning of 2016… so just over two years prior to the wedding, which was the perfect time as they get booked up well in advance.
How many guests did you invite to your wedding and how many accepted and attended?
I think originally, we invited around 80 guests but unfortunately some couldn’t attend. We had 45 on the day which was perfect.
You look stunning in your gown! Who was the designer and how long did it take before finding ‘the one’?
My dress was Justin Alexander. It was completely different to the style I originally had in mind. I went dress shopping on three different occasions, to several different shops but finally found the one at Abigail’s Bridal in Leeds.
Can you tell us about your shoes and accessories, where were they from?
My shoes were Ravel and I actually wore them previously for our daughters christening. I couldn’t find any that I liked at all so thought it would be nice to wear them again. My jewelry was given to me on the day as a gift; my bridesmaids bought me my bracelet, and my mum bought me the matching necklace and earrings.
What about Craig’s attire? What did he wear?
The groom wore royal blue Ted Baker trousers and waistcoat with a white shirt and a peach paisley tie.
We love your bridesmaids dresses! Where were these purchased?
They wore a pale peach long pleated dress, with embellished shoulder detail which I thought had a great Grecian look to them. I looked everywhere to find the right dress for them and in the end, I found the perfect one online at ASOS.
What flowers did you choose for your bouquet?
I looked for lots of different ideas on Pinterest. The bouquet I chose had cream and peach roses with a hint of gypsophila and pale green leaf detail.
What about the smaller details of the day? Did you have a wedding cake? What was your menu choice? Did you have favours and entertainment?
We decided against having a wedding cake.
Our menu was a sit down three course meal. For our starter we had stuffed sun-dried tomatoes, our main was pork Souvlaki with potatoes and our deserts were fresh fruit platters.
For our favours we had sparklers for everyone, with a personalised card saying ‘let love sparkle’. They were lit by all our guests at our first dance.
For entertainment we had a saxophonist during and following the ceremony and we had a harpist playing whilst we sat down for dinner.
How did you find the planning experience from booking to the big day?
I found the whole process very laid back and pretty stress free. Our wedding planner was fantastic and took all the stress out of the organising.
What’s your best memory from the day?
There isn’t just one best memory, as the whole day was amazing! However, I remember the feeling of walking down the aisle with my mum, with my song playing on the saxophone, seeing all of our friends and family there and Craig stood at the altar with the most breathtaking scenery behind him, it really was magical!!
What do you think makes a wedding abroad stand out from a wedding in the UK?
I think the guarantee of sunshine and the laid-back atmosphere really sold it to me, not to mention the outstanding views in Santorini.
What advice would you give to future brides and grooms who are getting married abroad?
Give yourself plenty of time to save for the wedding, and give yourself a budget so you can keep track of what your spending. Also, budget for a little extra as there is unexpected costs when you’re not expecting them. One of the reasons we decided to get married abroad was we thought it would save on cost, our wedding cost much more than expected but we wouldn’t change it for anything as it really was the best day of our lives.
Are you getting married in Santorini? What are you most looking forward to about your wedding day? Leave your comments below!
Wedding Venue – Santorini Gem | Wedding Planner – The Bridal Consultant | Photographer – Phosart | Brides Dress – Justin Alexander | Brides Shoes – Ravel | Grooms Suit – Ted Baker | Bridesmaids Dresses – Asos