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Emma and David’s Wedding at Chateau du Bijou

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A romantic, rustic, relaxed wedding at Chateau du Bijou in Provence

Emma and David were introduced during their high school years by a mutual friend and the couple spent the next 11 years, side by side.

After buying a house, and a dog together, Emma and David were very happy – but David felt that something was missing in their relationship. The couple were in the middle of throwing a New Year’s Eve party and David had arranged a reel of photographs to play on their TV. The last image to appear was the couple’s dog, Sammy, along with a proposal, to which Emma of course, very excitedly, accepted. The couple spent the next 16 months planning all of the details, in preparation for their romantic wedding which started out in the UK, but ended up in the South of France.

Getting Married in France

Emma and David looked at several wedding venues in the UK and had even put their deposit down on one, before deciding to pop down to Provence to check out Chateau du Bijou. After seeing the beautiful Chateau and its stunning grounds, Emma had a change of heart and decided that Chateau du Bijou was where she wanted to start her married life with David. “It’s just the most beautiful place and when you visit, you are immediately calm. It’s so peaceful” said Emma.

Once the couple had booked Chateau du Bijou, they started to fill in their online planner, a clever tool, created by Bijou Weddings, in order to help make the journey to the altar stress-free.

The couple shopped around and took advice from Bijou when it came to local suppliers such as their chosen florist, Anais Flowers based in Chomerac – not too far from Chateau du Bijou. Emma based their spring wedding around her favourite flowers, peonies, and roses. The couple also ordered a stunning floral arch for them to stand under during their pre-planned, outdoor wedding ceremony.

French Wedding Style

Emma was a little bit picky when it came to finding a wedding dress suitable for her wedding in France. She tried on no less than 30 wedding dresses before falling in love with a luxurious lace, strapless, fishtail design by Lillian West.

Emma teamed her spring wedding dress up with a pair of comfortable wedges from Carvela and her stunning side-bun and bridal beauty were done on the day by Make up by Jodie.

The bride to be chose her best friends from school to be her bridesmaids in France, along with David’s sister. All eight bridesmaids wore pastel gowns, purchased from ASOS, chosen by themselves to suit their individual shapes and styles. The variety of pastel green, peach, lilac and blue tones looked simply stunning on the spring wedding day in Provence and the eight girls all wore rustic gypsophilia floral crowns in their hair to complete their look.

The groom and his party wore dark blue suits hired from Debenhams that they teamed up with smart brown shoes.

The Big Day: 30th April, 2016

Due to the legal requirements of getting married in France, most couples find it easier to have their official ceremony at a registry office in the UK and have a celebrant ceremony at their chosen French wedding venue.

Once their wedding venue in France was booked, the couple spoke to a local registry office back in the UK in order to arrange their official ceremony which took place privately in the early spring. Knowing that the ‘official’ part of their wedding and requirements for their wedding in France was complete, the couple could then focus on preparing everything that they would need in order to enjoy their wedding weekend at Chateau du Bijou.

The couple and their families headed down to the South of France a couple of days before the wedding – so that they could set up and make sure that everything was ready and in place for what was going to be a weekend to remember – for everyone. Emma and David both got ready for their wedding in different parts of Chateau du Bijou; with plenty of bedrooms and space to get ready, they were able to relax and fully soak up the French atmosphere. Guests arrived and were greeted by rustic welcome signs, lanterns on logs and beautiful personal touches that Emma and David had thought about in order to make their guests feel happy and excited at their destination wedding venue. The couple had originally booked their wedding photographer, Frances Sales, thinking that they were going to get married in the UK, but when they realised they wanted to get married in France, Frances agreed to travel down and capture their celebrations at the rustic French Chateau.

The couple had planned to have an outdoor wedding ceremony, but due to the weather, the ceremony needed to be brought inside at the very last minute. Emma and David still got to say their vows under the rustic floral arch that they’d ordered, albeit, 45 minutes after their ceremony was due to start. Emma eventually walked down the aisle on the arm of her father, behind her lovely bridesmaids, to ‘I Wasn’t Expecting That’ by Jamie Lawson and her mother read an extract from Captain Correli’s Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres.

 

Laura, one of Emma’s bridesmaids read the following poem, by an unknown author:

Marriage
by Anon

Marriage is about giving and taking
And forging and forsaking
Kissing and loving and pushing and shoving
Caring and Sharing and screaming and swearing

About being together whatever the weather
About being driven to the end of your tether
About Sweetness and kindness
And wisdom and blindness

It’s about being strong when you’re feeling quite weak
It’s about saying nothing when you’re dying to speak
It’s about being wrong when you know you are right
It’s about giving in, before there’s a fight

It’s about you two living as cheaply as one
(you can give us a call if you know how that’s done!)
Never heeding advice that was always well meant
Never counting the cost until it’s all spent

And for you two today it’s about to begin
And for all that the two of you had to put in
Some days filled with joy, and some days with sadness
Too late you’ll discover that marriage is madness

The couple said their vows in front of 75 wedding guests at Chateau du Bijou and celebrated their first kiss as husband and wife before heading outside in to the sunshine to celebrate their marriage with Prosecco and canapés. The newlyweds had decorated the glorious grounds of the garden at the Chateau with rustic wedding accessories such as a post box, lanterns, floral decor and a hanging Polaroid style photo booth which was enjoyed by Emma and her besties. There was also a ‘Pimp Your Prosecco’ stand and an amazing heart-drop guest book for guests get involved with, made by Emma’s father.

After a short while, guests were invited back inside the cool Chateau to enjoy a main course choice of either guinea fowl or lamb shank, followed by a summer berry and meringue dessert. David’s mother had made a selection of single tier, fruit, lemon drizzle and angel cake wedding cakes which were displayed on various cake stands and decorated with raffia, bunting, fresh flowers and iced figurines to look like Emma, David and their dog Sammy.

Guests were able to find their seat by looking at a truly original wedding table plan; a wooden board painted white, featuring frames, bunting, hearts and flowers. Their table names were all ‘ages’ of when Emma and David were little and featured corresponding images of the newlyweds as children. The couple had pre-asked their guests to send them a funny selfie before their wedding so that they could print Polaroid style place cards for each guest. Each table was also given a selfie stick and funny-mouth coasters with French translation to hold up so that they could create images for the bride and groom to hold in a very memorable photo album in the future.

Instead of wedding favours, the couple made two donations; one to the Dogs Trust, where they found their beloved dog Sammy, and the other to Friends of the Elderly. Each guest was given a keyring to represent the donation that Emma and David had made.

After dinner, Kanye West Sunglasses were distributed to guests as the evening party began – which ended up going on until 3am. The nelwyweds danced their first dance to ‘Thinking Out Loud’ by Ed Sheeran and they couldn’t have had a better experience at their dream wedding venue in France.

single tier wedding cake with personalised cake topper of dog

The Honeymoon

The couple spent their honeymoon travelling around Thailand for a month. They booked the location together and loved the culture, the food and everything about the Far East. Emma and David are now the proud parents to baby boy Luca and they both have very fond memories of their wonderful wedding weekend at Chateau du Bijou.

Emma and David’s Wedding Suppliers

Wedding Venue: Chateau du Bijou
Wedding Photographer: Frances Sales
Wedding Dress Designer: Lillian West
Wedding Hair and Beauty: Make up by Jodie
Bridesmaids Dresses: ASOS
Groomswear: Debenhams
Wedding Flowers: Anais Flowers, Chomerac
DJ and Photobooth: Phunky Disco

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