J & R’s Chic Rustic Sailcloth Wedding

For 8 years my team and I organised the Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival held annually at Snape Maltings in Suffolk. There, I met the lovely Joey and Katy who have set up HUSK on their farm at Thorington. They prepare much of their own locally grown, reared, foraged and sourced foods and run supper clubs, and can also offer guests a room for the night in their newly converted farm buildings, soon to be augmented with some converted silos. Katy explained that they had offered her brother and wife-to-be the use of their farm for their wedding celebrations, and as they were at the time living on the Isle of Wight, juggling work and coping with a toddler, they were in need of a wedding planner.

I began preparations approximately 10 months prior to the big July day.  J & R needed guidance and advice on most aspects of their wedding as planning an event such as this was a whole new experience.

I explained all the marquees and tents available in the market to hire, guided them through the process of choosing one, obtained quotes from a multitude of suppliers, measured out the land, got a local farmer to top it, and over several months offered them inspiration and advice.  We discussed catering options, seating configurations, the various ranges of furniture available to be hired from both locally and nationwide, as well as lighting, music, entertainment, flowers, tree hire and a vast range of details.  I assisted with booking bar staff and advising on drinks quantities to be purchased, and on the day I ran proceedings for them which even included cooking Cornish pasties at midnight!

Having got married in advance of the big day, they held a non-religious ceremony in a refurbished barn.  I organized for a large number of bales of straw to be delivered and we covered them with fleece throws as they can be very prickly!  The florist delivered buckets of locally grown English garden flowers and we arranged these into stem vases.  She also made up some abundant meadow boxes for the ends of the rows of bales, and smaller jam jar type arrangements tied onto the backs of chairs with hessian.  It’s all these little details which elevate an event from good to extraordinary!

After champagne on the lawn adjacent to HUSK’s natural swimming pool, the guests meandered along curvaceous paths through shoulder height meadow grass to the beautiful sailcloth tent.  

Dinner comprised of wood-fired bbq’d local Sutton Hoo chickens and salads served family-style, following which the photographer whisked J & R off into the sunset for some special photos.  If your photographer suggests this, even though it may seem a shame to leave the party – or be an inconvenient time – do go, you won’t regret it!

Some very amusing speeches and an excellent band saw the guests letting their hair down well into the night on a balmy summer’s evening during which I removed almost all the sides off of the tent!  Palomas were the ‘drink of choice’ and infact continued to be at many events during the rest of the party season!

Photos by @hannahbettsphotography and Jenny Loyd.

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For 8 years my team and I organised the Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival held annually at Snape Maltings in Suffolk. There, I met the lovely Joey and Katy who have set up HUSK on their farm at Thorington. They prepare much of their own locally grown, reared, foraged and

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