Two years a wife

Yesterday was the two year anniversary of mine and Dan’s wedding.

Anniversary cardI’m sure everyone always says this, but I literally cannot believe that it has been two years since we got married!  (You can see all of our wedding posts here.)

Throwing confetti at our wedding in Sharrington church

To celebrate we had a fairly low key day yesterday, with presents in the morning…

Anniversary socks with Bella

(Check out my cute cat-face socks…!…Year two = cotton gifts.)
…a long walk in the afternoon…Dan and I walking round Grafham Water…and then got ready to head out for dinner at the Fox Inn, Thorpe Waterville in the evening.

Dan and Me on our two year wedding anniversary in the kitchenThis picture was taken in our kitchen – although you can see that we still have the horrific wall colours left by the previous owners in the background, you can also vaguely see that progress has been made when it comes to kitchen units!  As in, we have some now!  Three large larder units down one wall to begin with.  No doors on yet, as we’re still waiting for a plasterer to do our ceilings.  But, – my food is no longer all stored in a big pile on the dining room table!  Progress!

We’d only been to the Fox Inn once before.  About four years ago in the middle of a really hot Summer day and for some reason we decided to choose hot soup for our lunch?!
When we were hunting around for places to try for our anniversary meal out we decided to give the Inn another go after viewing their menu online though and we weren’t disappointed.

Dan went for the beef…

Dan with beef dish at Fox Inn Thorpe WatervilleAnd, continuing with my pattern from earlier in the week I stuck to a non-traditional-Mary-choice of linguine with Mediterranean vegetables.  I never choose pasta dishes when I go out.

Me with vegetable linguine dish at Fox Inn Thorpe WatervilleFor dessert, we both tucked into the brownie…

Chocolate brownie dessert at Fox Inn Thorpe Waterville

I actually impressed myself with how much I was able to eat at the meal.  It’s been a very long while since I was last able to do a main and a dessert in one sitting!

Having spent some time looking through our wedding pictures yesterday (which we still need to get printed!) I’m going to post a few below.  We were a long while receiving them from our photographer after our wedding so other than the previews I was sent early on, the majority never made it up onto the blog at the time.  Then last anniversary, when I planned to post some more pictures from the wedding we had only been moved into our house for a few weeks, and I could not find the box containing the memory stick with all of our wedding photographs on.

Anyway, here we go…

My parents…

Our wedding - Dan and me with my parentsDan’s parents…Our wedding - Dan and me with his parents

Walking out of the church with my bridesmaids…Our wedding - Me with my bridesmaids

My flowers…Our wedding - flowersPlacing my flowers on my Nan’s grave…

Our wedding - flowers on Nan's grave

Leaving the church in a horse and carriage…Our wedding - Dan and Me in the horse and carriageTaking advantage of the playground at our wedding reception…Our wedding - Me with my bridesmaids

Having fun on the zipwire in my wedding dress…Our wedding - Me on the zipwire

Climbing up into the wooden castle outside…Our wedding - Me in the castle

And struggling to make my way back out again…Our wedding - Me in the castle

Our band getting in on the castle act…Our wedding - The Yow Yows in the castleAnd, not from our professional photographer, but instead from a friend’s camera phone, this is one of my favourite shots of the night, and one of the few that I like of Dan and Me…
Our first dance…Our wedding - First danceHow do you celebrate your anniversaries?

One year a wife

Last week I updated my Instagram and Twitter descriptions, removing the word ‘newlywed’ from my bio.

Our wedding in the church

I don’t think I can really class myself as a newlywed anymore.  Yesterday it was our one year anniversary.  Dan and I have gone from celebrating eight years together, to celebrating our first as a married couple.

Dan and I walking down the aisle at our wedding

We decided to spend our first wedding anniversary visiting our Uni town of Stafford, where we first met at the beginning of 2007.  After picking up some sandwiches from ASDA we headed over to the castle…

Stafford Castle

Me at Stafford castle on our anniversary weekend

Dan and Me at Stafford castle on our anniversary weekend Dan and Me at Stafford castle on our anniversary weekend

…before taking a wander through the town to see what had changed.  Quite a lot had changed since we had last visited in fact.  It felt very surreal walking along the streets as we had done so many times before but for them not to be the same.

In the afternoon we checked in at our hotel where Dan had (unknown to me) ordered some wine to be in our room on arrival. (Brownie points for the husband!)

That evening we headed took a long walk past our old uni houses taking a quick stop in at our old local pub for a game of pool and then over to Frankie & Benny’s for our evening meal.

Me racking up the pool ballsDan playing pool in StaffordMy first job post-degree was as Assistant Manager of Frankie & Benny’s in Stafford and I was ever so disappointed to see that the service had gone downhill since we last visited.  We had finished our starters before our drinks arrived, were sat right by the hotplate, where we saw our meals gradually get more and more cold during the fifteen minutes they were sat out waiting to be delivered to our table.  Dan’s meal then arrived wrongly (containing the salad he had asked to have on the side and without the bacon and cheese on his fries) and my side order didn’t arrive.  I felt a little sorry for Dan as I couldn’t keep quiet in the restaurant.  It’s frustrating having been a restaurant manager as I know exactly what should happen to provide a good eating out experience.  I don’t think we shall be going to Frankies any more though.  We have had one too many bad experiences at their restaurants just lately.

From Frankies we walked into town.  Cocktails featured strongly here.  I do like a good cocktail!Dan and Me drinking cocktails on our anniversary weekendOn Sunday (our actual anniversary) we enjoyed a lazy morning in the hotel before nipping to check out kitchen and bathroom displays in the local stores.  This seems to be how we spend our Sundays just lately since buying the new house.

Hunting down a new kitchenIn my opinion, once you’ve seen displays in one store, you’ve seen them all.  We know what we want (similar colours to the above picture, although without the red tiles) and I would quite happily wait until we were ready to go ahead with the kitchen before having another mooch around the DIY stores but Dan is very excited about our kitchen being absolutely perfect.  I am too, I just know we have a lot of other things to be getting on with first!

At lunchtime we made our way over to The Holly Bush Inn in Salt.  This was where Dan took me for our six month dating anniversary and it has remained a firm favourite with us.  We last popped in for a flying visit on the way back from getting engaged two years ago.

Dan and Me at the Holly Bush on our anniversary weekendDan and Me at the Holly Bush on our anniversary weekend Dan and Me at the Holly Bush on our anniversary weekendIt was super sunny out – excuse the squint!

We didn’t want to stay out too late as we had left Bella overnight so once we had finished our meals we headed back home to Northamptonshire where we opened our presents from each other.

The first year of marriage is supposed to be celebrated with ‘paper’ gifts.  I had bought a large frame and cut spaces into the card inside which I then labelled “Daniel + Mary Pearson” at the top.  Underneath, the cutouts read “9th August 2014″, “1st Anniversary”, “5th Anniversary”, “10th Anniversary” and “20th Anniversary”.First anniversary paper gift - photo frameI placed a picture of us on our wedding day in the first frame slot and then four copies of the top of the Order of Service from our wedding day in the remaining picture holes.  I also popped a couple of scratch cards into Dan’s card.

Dan had also gifted me a scratch card, along with a couple of running books – ‘Running Like a Girl’ and ‘Sports Nutrition for Endurance Athletes’.  He also bought us a wedding album.  Now we just need to find and unpack the box which contains the USB of our wedding photos so that we can choose which ones to place inside!

First anniversary paper presents for a runner

We both had a lovely weekend and I was ready to jump straight into my PJs and dressing gown upon arriving home.  I popped my phone into my dressing gown pocket, bending down to make a fuss of Bella in the kitchen and my phone slipped right out and smashed on the floor.

Smashed screen on my MotorolaI was absolutely gutted.  I love my phone.  It’s made so many tasks a huge amount easier this year, but unfortunately I did a good job of destroying it and the glass screen has completely shattered.  Dan seems to think that the digitiser is working OK underneath the glass, but obviously it’s not very practical to run my finger over the screen at the moment, or to hold my phone up to my ear.  Not unless I want another trip to A&E this year anyway!  My contract doesn’t expire until February, so Dan has ordered a protective film to sit over the smashed glass, but for the time-being I won’t have a handy phone in my pocket whilst out on runs/to take random pictures whilst out with.  :(

Have you smashed your phone before?
If you are married, how did you celebrate your first anniversary?
Are you any good at pool?!

When a Miss becomes a Mrs

When I got married last August I had the best intentions in the world of changing my name on all my documents almost immediately and being super organised about it all.
Then, Dan and I added up our pennies, had a chat and decided that we still wanted to move within the next year so I put the name change on hold for a bit with the idea that I could change both name and address at the same time after we had moved.
Now that it is looking like we shall be moving next month it is time to work out what I have already changed my name on and which documents/providers I need to change my address with and then start preparing to send off my marriage certificate a ridiculous number of times!

I’ve written the following as a reminder to myself what I need to do, but hopefully it might help someone else in the same situation as me!

How to change everything into your married name

Bank
Name change process:
  This was the easiest thing to change my name on as I didn’t have to post my marriage certificate away!  Several of our guests had given us cheques made out to ‘Mr and Mrs Pearson’ and, although we already had a joint bank account, my name on the bank account was originally my maiden name and we were unable to pay cheques in without producing our marriage certificate.  On returning from honeymoon I took our certificate in to our local branch, signed my old name and my new name a couple of times and was issued with new bank cards in the post a few days later.  Simples!
Cost:  £0.

Credit Card
Name change process: We have a credit card with Tesco Bank and everything ends up going on there so that we can claim the points back.  Points mean prizes!  (Or at least cheap days out!)  To change name you have to send in your original marriage certificate via recorded delivery to Tesco Bank, PO Box 27029, Glasgow, G2 9FU along with a letter detailing your account details and name change.  Tesco will return the marriage certificate via recorded delivery and issue a new card in your married name.
Cost:  £0. (Other than postage costs.)

Passport
Name change process:  You can actually change your name three months before you get married if you apply for the change along with a letter from the Vicar who will be taking your service, although you won’t be able to use the passport to travel until the date of your wedding.  We decided not to do this.  Despite living quite close to the Passport Office in Peterborough, there was always the chance that my passport wouldn’t return in time for the wedding and that we wouldn’t get on our honeymoon!  Unfortunately, to get a new passport containing your new name you must post off your original marriage certificate and reapply for a passport, at a hefty cost.  The cost and the fact that the original marriage certificate must be sent off has put me off changing my passport yet, although when I went to the bank to have some statements reprinted  last week I was told that they could no longer accept the passport as ID, even alongside my marriage certificate as that was not the name I was known by any more.  Apparently you can legally still travel using a passport in your maiden name until it expires though as long as your flight details match this.
Cost:  £72.50

Driving Licence
Name change process:  To change the name on your driving licence you have to fill out a D1 ‘Application for a driving licence’ form from the post office and send it off along with the original copy of your marriage certificate and old driving licence.  You can still drive whilst waiting for the new copy of your licence to be returned though.
Cost:
 Free other than postage costs as long as you don’t update your photo at the same time.  Otherwise £14 if you update the photo online and £17 if you post a new photo for your card.

Work
Name change process:  
I took my marriage certificate in after returning from honeymoon.  This was then photocopied and signed by the school admin staff who sent it off to payroll to update my name.
Cost:  
£0.

Pensions Office
Name change process:  

Cost:  £0.

Register to vote
Name change process:  
Very simple, took me two minutes to fill out this form to update with my new name.  If not correct it can damage your credit rating if applying for credit cards/mortgages/etc…
Cost:  
£0.

HM Land Registry
Name change process:  Because I own property, I need to ensure that it is registered in my new name.  You need to fill out the form on this page and also send them a certified copy of your marriage certificate when doing so.  Because we shall be moving house next month I have not changed name on the property and the new one will be held in my new name from the beginning.
Cost:  Postage costs.

Mortgage
Name change process:  I need to post a copy of the marriage certificate to the address which has been signed by someone responsible to say that that is indeed me!  I didn’t even bother writing the address down as we plan on paying off this mortgage next month and taking out a new one for the new house.
Cost:
  Postage costs.

Council Tax
Name change process:  I have filled in a preliminary form requesting the alteration to my details I wish to make.  I am sure that the council will get back to me and require a copy of my marriage certificate in order to make this change, but shall update this post when I know more.
Cost:  £0.  (Potentially postage costs)

Gas
Name change process:  Another very easy log on and change details manually with Southern Electric.
Cost:  £0.

Electric
Name change process:  We never removed the pay as you go meter from our house when we moved in, despite it having been on my to-do-list forever!  No point changing it now and no-one ever had my details as we paid on a key at the local shop as we went along.  The key then slotted into our meter and topped up our electricity in the house.
Cost:  £0.

Anglian Water
Name change process:  Because I had never set up an online account before I simply created one and linked our account number with my new name.
Cost:  £0.

BT
Name change process:  Another nice easy one, although I didn’t expect it to be!  All I had to do was log on to my online account and change my details by typing them in.
Cost:  £0.

House Insurance
Name change process: I insure through Tesco and simply had to call the number 0845 674 6666 and state my new surname.  It was updated manually by the person on the other end and new documents were sent out to me confirming this immediately via email.
Cost:  £0.

Doctor
Name change process:  I just took in my marriage certificate and my details were updated on the system.
Cost:  £0.

Dentist
Name change process:  I just took in my marriage certificate and my details were updated on the system.
Cost:  £0.

Vets
Name change process:  I just told them that Bella’s name was becoming Bella Poppodopulus Pearson!
Cost:  £0.

TV Licence
Name change process:  Until Dan moved in I never actually got a TV licence – I accidentally snipped through the TV cable whilst cutting back our hedge along the outside of the house before I ever moved in.  I didn’t miss watching live TV.  It was actually quite nice not having to remember what was on when and sticking to the TV schedule.  Everything I ever wanted to watch was available on catchup.  At the time I had a LoveFilm account for films and barely had time to watch them, never mind TV in the evenings.  Not long after Dan moved in he decided that the only way to watch football matches was live and a TV licence was purchased!  Another super easy one to change though, simply log in to the TV licencing website and update your details.
Cost:  £0.

end a photocopy of my marriage certificate, along with a covering letter which states my pre-marital name, my new name (including the Mrs part) and my EE contract telephone number to; Customer Administration, 6 Camberwell Way, Doxford Technology Park, Doxford, Sunderland, SR3 3XN.
Cost: 
Postage costs.

Library
Name change process:  When I told the librarian that I had lost my original card she said it would probably just be easier to create a new account and start from scratch with my new name!
Cost:  
£0.

Running Club
Name change process:  Just told them, although they had already picked up on my Facebook name changing!  Super easy!
Cost:  £0.

Student Loan
Name change process:  I need to post a photocopy of my marriage certificate with a cover letter stating that I wish to change my name to: Student Finance England PO Box 210, Darlington, DL1 9HJ.
Cost:  Postage costs.

Car Insurance
Name change process:  I had to email a copy of my marriage certificate over to e-car (my insurers) with details of my policy number.
Cost:  £0.

PayPal
Name change process:  You must scan in a form of photo ID as well as your marriage certificate.  As I am yet to receive any photo ID with my new name on, I haven’t been able to make this change yet.
Cost:  £0.PayPal name change

Amazon
Name change process:  Simply when logged in, click on your name in the top right hand corner of the screen and select Your Account.  When the next screen appears, scroll down until you see Account Settings and select Change Name, E-mail Address or Password.  From the final screen you will be able to simply type your new name in.

Amazon name change
Cost:  £0.

EBay
Name change process:  When you log in to your eBay account, hover on your name in the top left hand corner and select Account Settings.  Select Personal Information from the menu on the left hand side of the page.  Click Edit to change your Registered name and address.  The rest of the process is quite straight forward and involves just typing in your new name!

ebay name change

 

Cost:  £0.

Have I missed any suppliers out?
Have you missed any out?!

How much a wedding in the UK ACTUALLY costs

How much a UK wedding actually costs

(I know this post won’t interest everyone so feel free to skip over it if you are not interested in weddings or how much one costs!)

When Dan and I first started planning our wedding last year we bought several bridal magazines in the hope that they would make sure we thought of everything before our big day and weren’t left with major elements missing from the wedding we had always wanted.

The more magazines we read, the more we began to realise just how incredibly difficult it was going to be to judge how much our wedding would cost.  Magazines all gave helpful ‘average’ figures (which were all different from each other) but there was no way of knowing if we would need/want the maximum or minimum figures given for each element of the day.  I spoke to a few friends, – two of whom said it cost them under £5,000 for their wedding.  Excellent, – we finally had a figure to work from.  Or so we thought…

As soon as we began requesting quotes for venues, caterers and bands we realised just how unrealistic £5,000 was going to be for the wedding we wanted.  I’ve since spoken to both friends and when they sat down and thought about it, they realised that parents had paid off large chunks that they had never included when totting up the costs, or they hadn’t thought about little things they’d picked up here and there such as the guestbook, balloons or stamps.  (Every little thing adds up!!!)

Obviously for each wedding the amount can vary enormously, but I thought it might help others if I listed how much our wedding came to earlier this year as I kept detailed accounts and you can see just what we got for our money!

Throwing confetti at our wedding in Sharrington church

Dan and I decided early on that we would each choose one important thing to us and that would be our splurge for the day.  Dan wanted a really good band, and I wanted to arrive in a horse and carriage – something I’ve always imagined for my wedding day.  We found that lots of people wanted to help us out and be a part of our day so we could save money by letting them help.  Dan’s Mum made the cake, my parents put together the flowers, my Maid of Honour made decorations for the venue, along with Dan’s Mum who created all of the bunting.

Venue:  (£2252.52)

Dan and I walking down the aisle at our weddingIt was important for me that we get married in the church I grew up going to when I was small.  (Sharrington in North Norfolk)  My Mum has been the church organist ever since I can remember and it was where all of my Dad’s family had been married.  I knew it would mean a lot to several people to see me get married in the same church.
Ceremony – £237
Vicar – £215
Banns – £34
If you are getting married in a church, Wedding ‘banns’ need to be read for three weeks in both the church you will be married in and also your local church if you are getting married somewhere away from home.  Make sure you know who is organising the banns to be read for your wedding as ours was rather a last minute job!
Village Hall – £320
We struggled to find a venue for a little while as we were completely without clue as to just how much stately houses and grand hotels cost.  Way out of our price range it seems!  We were getting quotes for some places of up to £5000 and that included nothing but the location – no catering, no accommodation…nothing!  In the end after some searching online we discovered Swanton Novers Village Hall which we could hire at a very minimal cost from Friday – Sunday.  The hall had been left minimal, so that it could be used for weddings in any colour scheme.  It came fully stocked with cutlery and glasswear, as well as a beautiful wooden playground which we all enjoyed after dinner!  Along one side of the hall were large French doors which we decided to leave open leading into a marquee for the food in the daytime…

Wedding marquee at night

Marquee – £1250.52
The cost of our marquee included nine round tables and 75 chairs, drapes on the ceiling and a starlight ceiling.
The marquee for our yellow wedding
Hotel room – £196
We always stay at cheap little B&Bs when we go away so decided to stay somewhere really nice on our wedding night.  Unfortunately we never got to experience it for very long as we didn’t arrive until 11:15pm and had to leave early the following day to collect ferry Ushers around as they did not have cars.  We stayed at The Dales hotel in Upper Sheringham.

Catering:  (1929.44)
Three course meal and bar – £1616
Our caterers were Anglia Catering and they impressed us from the very beginning.  They responded promptly to emails and were happy to answer the smallest of our queries.  We even got a bottle of wine sent to us at Christmas!  They invited us round for a tasting session ten months before the wedding and again, we were nothing but impressed at the quality and attention to detail.  Unfortunately I have no pictures of the food on the day.  Something I meant to ask my bridesmaids to take photos of! 
Welcome drinks and table wine – £173.15
Paper plates – £4
We supplied the welcome drinks and wine for the tables as it worked out a lot cheaper for us to do so.  My Aunt has a Cash & Carry card so we took advantage of some savings there.  We bought 12 bottles of orange juice for children and non-drinkers, 12 bottles of red wine, 12 bottles of white, 4 bottles of Bucks Fizz for arrival and 8 bottles of Asti for the toasts.Wedding alcoholTesco shop – £104.57
Originally we had looked at having a Hog Roast or similar in the evening, but prices started at £500 (without salads and side dishes) and we weren’t sure how long guests were going to stay for (many were travelling for up to 4 hours to be with us on the day) so we decided to put together our own evening food for a fraction of the cost.  We bought 5x packs of breadsticks, 10 eggs, 8x packs of marshmallows, 8x 100g chocolate, 1 tub of Flora, 3x packs of salad tomatoes, 3x mild cheese, 1 green pepper, 1 red pepper, 7 yellow peppers, 4x ready rolled puffed pastry, 5x packs of seedless grapes, a jar of mayonnaise, 2x popping corn, 6x packs of baby plum tomatoes, 3x 70 cocktail sausages, 2x 1.5kg bags of carrots, 5x pork suasage meat, 4x tins of tuna, 1 pack of ham, 10 packs of closed cup mushrooms and 2x packs of celery.
My parents also bought us 10x loaves of white/brown bread which we pre-ordered at our local bakery and 10x french sticks on the morning of the wedding.

Preparing the wedding foodI was adamant that I did not want frozen food which had been shoved into the oven served at our wedding and I got my own way!  We made a selection of egg mayonnaise, tuna mayonnaise, ham and cheese sandwiches, we dipped marshmallows in chocolate, placed cocktail sausages and cuts of cheese with grapes on sticks, my Great Aunt baked hundreds of mini sausage rolls, we used peppers with the lids chopped off to hold dips and baked little mushrooms topped with slices of cheese and tomato as a ‘healthier’ version of pizza.  One of my favourite touches was the french stick cut on a slant with slices of pepper, celery and carrot placed inside.  (See Pinterest.)  There were also big pots of Smarties laid out with the children in mind.
The biggest bag of Smarties you ever did see – £7
We used Banquet roll to cover the tables and placed yellow napkins out with the evening meal.  I’m pretty sure we still have about 60 napkins remaining.  Clearly our guests are pretty clean eaters!
Banquet roll – £14.72
100x yellow napkins – £10
Dan’s Mum made the cake at no cost to us.
Wedding cake

Decorations/entertainment:  (£1506)
20x yellow balloons – £6
We placed yellow balloons on our road signs so that they stood out to our guests driving past.
Band – £1500
The Yow Yows - wedding bandThe band was one of our bigger splurges, but very definitely worth it.  If you ever get the chance to see/book The Yow Yows, then do so.  They were superb and all our guests told us so.  Between dances of course!  They did a mix of their own stuff as well as covers and the dancefloor was always full.
Because the band weren’t arriving until the evening, Dan borrowed a PA system from the school he works at for the speeches and music we had on during the meal.
My parents provided all of the beautiful flowers on our wedding day which they had been growing all year long.
A path of yellow marigolds at the church for the weddingMy Maid of Honour made lots of tissue paper decorations and my now Mother-In-Law produced bunting to help decorate our venue.
Wedding bunting

Transport:  (£500)
Horse and carriage – £500
Wedding day with horse and carriage
We were so glad we went for a horse and carriage ride to the venue as it meant we actually got to spend some time together!

Stationary:  (£190.63)
Save the date cards – £42.90  from Zazzle.  The only thing I was disappointed about when it came to the Save the Dates was the large Zazzle logo on the back of the card.  We covered them up with some spare sticky labels I found.
500 sheets of yellow and brown card – £24
The card from Papermill Direct came in so handy for invitations, food orders on the tables and even the numbers on the tables.All wedding invitationsRibbon – £6.50
This came from Hobbycraft but we actually used much more ribbon than this on the flowers, but my Mum purchased it separately.
100x Yellow envelopes – £5.80  (ebay)
Guestbook – £21.60  
(Shutterfly)
Wedding GuestbookConversation starters – £11.09
from Moo.com I do love Moo and we’ve ordered various things in the past and always been happy with the results.
Wedding conversation starter cardsSeating plan board – £26.89
We borrowed my Maid of Honour’s easel to display the seating plan at the entrance to the marquee.
Wedding seating planThank you cards – £32.77 (Snapfish)
Stamps – £19.08
(36 2nd class)
Stamps actually cost more than you think!  And take up a lot of money when you think you need them to pay deposits to companies, send out Save the Date cards, invitations and thank-yous.  We hand delivered as many items as we could.

Clothing/looks:  (£2267.20)
Wedding dress – £705
I loved my dress and the whole experience I got at Nadine’s Bridal Boutique in Dereham.  It was actually the very first dress I tried on!
Veil – £65
We had a bit of a nightmare with my veil.  I really wanted one but didn’t think I could justify the cost.  I ended up going back to Nadine’s just two days before my wedding and buying the one they had recommended from the beginning though as I liked it so much.
Wedding rings – £358.20
Our wedding rings
From H.Samuel (Hate the photo of our hands!)
Bridesmaid dresses – £248
Bridesmaid dresses

I really liked the Two Birds bridesmaid dresses but there was no way I could spend £1000 on four dresses!  Luckily, I discovered a seamstress on ebay who made dresses similar to order.
Suits – £696
The Groomsmen suits
We had seven suits to order in total.  Dan, both Dads and Dan’s four groomsmen.  Dan was quite specific in the look that he was after and with the guys spread all around the UK it suited that we chose somewhere that allowed everyone to pick up their suits from different branches.  We went with Greenwoods in the end.
Necklace – £40
My wedding day necklace
This was another last minute purchase, (three days before the wedding!) but one that was very right.  I happened to be walking past a sign for Treasures the Bridal store in Kings Lynn and with help from a lovely member of staff I bought my necklace.  Dan bought me some earrings as my wedding present which I received the morning of the wedding.
Eyelashes – £15
Getting my eyelashes tinted was a fantastic suggestion by the lady that did my makeup.  For just £15 I removed the hassle of mascara for six whole weeks!
Shoes – £80
My wedding shoesHair – £35
I used a stylist in Fakenham that had already styled my hair for several other friends’ weddings.  There is a vlog on my hair and makeup here if you want to take a look.
Makeup – £25

Photography:  (£1033.97)
Photographer – £975
We used Sylvia Photo and this cost included all edited shots on USB stick to keep forever.
2x SD cards – £17.49
3x video cameras – £41.48
We asked one of my bridesmaids, my brother and one of the ushers to each have a video camera on them throughout the day so that they could record important bits for us which I have since turned into a wedding video.

Gifts:  (£215.09)
Favours – £73
For favours we bought each adult guest a scratchcard at £1 each which my bridesmaids placed into the name cards when they arrived at the venue.Wedding favours - scratchcardsFavours for the kids – £10
I placed together a magazine and crayons for each of the three children along with a bubble wand from Wilkinsons and some sweeties to keep them going until their dinner arrived.
Kids with the bubble wand at our weddingGroomsmen – £67.99
The Groomsmen each received personalised pint tankards.
Dads – £20.49
We went for jokey mugs for each of the Dads with translations in Norfolk written on (so that they could understand each other as my Dad has an incredibly Norfolk accent, and Dan’s Dad is very much from Wolverhampton!)
Bridesmaids – £28.61
Mums – £15
Both the bridesmaids and the Mums received personalised bookmarks from us with their birthstones on the top.  The bridesmaids also received framed photos of us all together on the day in a frame once we had received our photos from the photographer.  The Mums have a special Christmas present each coming their way.

Paperwork:
Passport – £72.50
Stupid name change costing me all that money!

TOTAL:  £9967.35
If you want to see all of my wedding posts on the blog, then please visit the wedding page.

What this doesn’t include: honeymoon, hen/stag weekends, wedding magazines, cleaning of my dress (yet to be done!) or petrol costs (we got married 100 miles away from where we live).  There are many areas that we could have cut costs, but there are also several areas where we saved, and we still intend on selling on my wedding shoes, the bridesmaid dresses, and two of the video cameras amongst other odds and ends.

Were you as surprised as us at the cost of weddings when you started planning?
Please let me know if this has helped you with cost ideas at all!  I’d like to think it’s helped at least one person out there now starting out with their wedding planning!