Styling a Summer Marquee Wedding in The Cotswolds

Filed under:

Today on The Journal, I’m reminiscing about a wonderful wedding day set beside the River Thames.

Laura and Harry came to me for help a few months before their big day – they’d booked a marquee for their wedding reception but were struggling with a vision of how best to style it. Marquees are great for providing a blank canvas with lots of opportunity for adding your own personality, but I often find couples find them a little more overwhelming than a traditional venue when it comes to styling.

It was a pleasure to work with both Laura and Harry in the run up to their wedding day – we worked on how best to make an impact with their wedding florals, tablescape designs and other areas where they could inject their personalities into the day. We ensured the day would have a feeling of laid back luxury, where guests would be able to relax and enjoy the day whilst also being comfortable in a beautiful setting.

As August rolled around, I headed to the Oxfordshire countryside ready to put all of our plans in place and got to work styling their reception venue alongside a fantastic team. Just down the river Laura and Harry were getting ready to say their I do’s at the beautiful Brasenose Chapel – the college chapel at Oxford University where they’d both met whilst studying.

Laura looked stunning in her Charlie Brear wedding dress, featuring feathered sleeves and a matching over skirt. She opted to have her hair up and accessorised with a statement pair of earrings. Harry looked dapper in his navy three piece suit with grey waistcoat.

On one of the hottest days of the year, guests were protected from the summer heat inside the chapel as Laura and Harry said their vows and officially became Mr and Mrs. It was then time for celebratory drinks and wedding cake on the College lawns – a perfect opportunity for everyone to enjoy the stunning architecture of Oxford.

After a few drinks and an ice cream or two, Laura and Harry were collected by a retro open-top Fiat 500 and made their way to The Perch, an English Country pub sat on the Thames, their reception in a marquee in The Perch’s garden.

Early on in the design process we decided it was going to be really important to bring some colour into an otherwise very white space so florals were to play a big role. Laura and Harry wanted their wedding flowers to be bright and joyful, the best summer has to offer, so we decided to use a palette of pink, blue and white, with pops of peach and lots of greenery.

As guests would be sitting at long banqueting tables and the menu featured sharing boards, we opted to keep the florals on the tables more simplistic in style. Our florist, Hannah from Lily and Liz, created different height bud vases lining the full lengths of the tables, nestled alongside a runner of seasonal foliage.

To create a huge impact, a garland of strung flowers – hanging as if by magic – was displayed between the two main marquee beams. We also focused on ensuring there was a backdrop to frame Laura and Harry on their top table. Laura from Lucca Studios created a beautiful fabric banner which featured a hand drawn illustration and provided the perfect backdrop.

A lovely personal touch, Harry’s mum had worked hard in creating macrame pieces for each guests place setting, doubling up as favours alongside the individual bottles of Genepi ready for a toast to the happy couple.

The Perch’s marquee features a number of pieces of furniture which we made use of throughout the styling. The rustic piano displayed the table plan which was presented in individual photo frames – the tables named after Laura and Harry’s favourite drinks and cocktails.

In keeping with the hand drawn elements used throughout their stationery, Lucca Studios also created gorgeous table numbers which had the sharing menu on the reverse. Luxury, textured linens and lots of romantic candlelight completed the beautiful tablescapes.

It was truly a day to remember and showed numerous ways to inject personality into a marquee wedding, I’ll leave you to enjoy an inspiring gallery from the incredible Ayesha Photography.

With love,

Hannah x

We couldn’t have done it without the brilliant talent of these fellow suppliers:

Photography – Ayesha Photography –

Florals – Lily & Liz –

Stationery & signage – Lucca Studios –

Venue – The Perch –