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Jo Boulton Photography & Film



Emma and Stephens Summer Barn wedding – In her own words 


We have never been the most traditional of couples, we hold some traditions close to our hearts like Sunday dinners as a family all sitting around the dinner table together, but for the most part we are very relaxed about tradition, that’s why as soon as Stephen proposed on my birthday back in March 2017 we knew we wanted something quite different from the norm for our wedding.


We sat down and wrote a list of things we did and didn’t want the wedding to be, that defined the day and we were able to plan from there. One of the most important things to us was that we got to share the most important day of our life’s with the people that loved us and we wanted to have a day with them where no one had to worry about what to bring, what to wear, how they were getting around, what money to bring; we wanted to provide everything for them as a thank you for all their support and love and I hope that’s what we achieved!

Grooms speech and hip flask Lake district Flowers close up detail of grooms watch Groom getting ready Dad putting button hole on his son Bridal shoes


A Lulu Browns Sale Rack discovery – It was meant to be

I felt quite pressured at first that there would be this ‘perfect dress’ some where and people kept saying ‘when you know, you know’. There are many beautiful dresses out there and I did have to shop around a bit, and there were many dresses that suited me and many that didn’t.  I was surprised that the picture of what I thought would suit me turned out to be wrong and the complete opposite to what I ended up buying.  In the end I found a beautiful dress at Lulu Browns bridal shop in Whalley, Lancashire, and it was on the sale rack.  The staff in the shop were excellent, I was worried that they would be pushy and direct me more towards the more expensive dresses but that’s not how they were at all.  They were more concerned about making me happy and finding the right dress regardless of the price.


I had a bolero made at Legends Bridal Alterations in Great Harwood, they were able to match the fabric perfectly and create a beautiful bolero that gave me a more elegant look during the ceremony and I then took this off for the party at night; with a quick change of jewellery of course.


I bought the jewellery from Etsy, there are so many fabulous designers retailing from the website, and my shoes were quite plain from Rainbow club.


A beautiful barn in beautiful grounds – The perfect setting

We have always loved the Lake District and our thoughts turned instantly to that area.  I had this vision of a beautiful barn in open grounds and as soon as we drove down onto the driveway at Knipehall, near Askham I knew we had found what we were looking for.  The 16thcentury house sleeps 14 people and it attached to 2 barns allowing space for both the wedding and wedding reception.  We fell in love with the place instantly, and that you booked this for a 4 day period and were allowed to arrange all the details yourself meant that we could create our wedding the way we wanted to and that was incredibly important to us.  So, I started to our ‘DIY’ wedding – the possibilities were endless!  I have always enjoyed organising events and have done lot of throughout my working life.  The thought of organising everything for a wedding may fill some people with fear but for me I enjoyed every second of it


Shabby Chic decor, help yourself, no fuss, just FUN

Voile drapes and fresh flowers with fairy lights created the relaxed space for the wedding ceremony.  I bought the flowers from Triangle Nursery online; they were delivered to my house 4 days before the wedding to allow time for conditioning.  I wanted flowers that were summery, and love the purple and yellow contrast.


We provided all the alcohol and soft drinks for the wedding, and set up stations around one of the barns for people to be able to help themselves.  The beer and cider station was a hit with the men, the pimp your prosecco station went down well with the women and once the cocktails in the cocktail cabinet had gone down we changed it to a cigar and whiskey bar at night.  I also made sure there were plenty of soft drinks in self serve drinks dispensers and kids bottles.


I made up a kids area in one corner of the barn using mats, a kids tent, cushions, tables and chairs and created activity packs using online sites so the kids had games to play.  This really helped the mums and dads at the wedding relax as it gave their kids something to do


Some of our family and friends helped set-up the barns the day before the wedding and we honestly couldn’t have done it without them. They decorated, arranged flowers, put out tables and chairs, they were great.  If you are going for a ‘DIY’ wedding you will definitely need a team of people to help you


Mr & Mrs Glasses Mr & Mrs cocktails Mr & Mrs cocktails Mr & Mrs cocktails Mr & Mrs cocktails wedding order of service wedding bunting Flip flops and umbrellas wedding Flip flops and umbrellas wedding Flip flops and umbrellas wedding wine bar at a wedding wine bar at a wedding wine bar at a wedding wine bar at a wedding wedding bar bath tub full of beer kids wedding activities kids wedding activities kids pop up tent at a wedding wine bar at a wedding wine bar at a wedding wine bar at a wedding wine bar at a wedding


A Spanish feast, a wedding bake-off and a pizza truck 

We have always loved Spanish food and the concept of tapas and sharing food, so we thought that Spanish food would be a great thing to have to eat during our evening reception.   Some of our friends who live in Murcia, Spain brought with them Jamon Iberico, cheeses, olives and garlic mayonnaise which completed the Spanish feast off perfectly.


As we were not having the traditional wedding breakfast but still wanting to provide dessert I asked my friends and family if they would like to be part of a ‘wedding bake-off’ competition and provide cakes for the table.  Although I did have a voting box it was just a bit of fun, I was quite surprised though at people really interested to know who won!


Just as people were starting to get a bit peckish towards the end of the night ‘Top That’ Pizza van arrived and served pizza to all the guests who were left standing.  People loved this idea and it was great as the location of the wedding was quite far from anywhere that people could be able to get food from.


Photographer and Videographer

I found Jo Boulton just by searching through the internet and reading lots of reviews.  All the positive reviews that I read about Jo were absolutely true; she managed to catch us off guard a well as the obligatory family shots.  She was really creative about the setting of the pictures and we definitely felt like we were in safe hands.

I wasn’t planning on having a videographer until my mind was changed by my hairdresser who told me how much it meant to have her family immortalised in a video for all the future years to come.  Again I did quite a bit of searching online and found Dave Harwood from Blackpool.  He has a wealth of knowledge about how too get the perfect video clips and made us feel completely confident about what the end result would be.


First dance

This was a bit of a tricky one, there was not just 1 song was stood out amongst the rest.  In the end we both sat down and went through our top 10 and decided on an acoustic version of Kings of Leon, Use Somebody.  The band was called Audio Wave from Yorkshire and they were really good at going with the flow.  I had arranged a birthday cake for my friends 40thbirthday which coincided with the wedding and they sang happy birthday.  Also towards the end of the night the agenda went a bit out of the window and I threw the bouquet at a different time.  The guys in the band were great at flexing around us.

Favourite Moment

My favourite moment has got to be stepping up into the wedding barn with my dad, looking around and seeing loads of smiling faces of friends and family, and then seeing Stephen stood at the front of the barn. My heart was racing, it was perfect. It had been raining that morning but a soon as the ceremony got underway the sun shone for us.

lavender on a wedding chair lavender on wedding chair bunting at knipe hall wedding I spy game suitcase card box for wedding

Any Advice

If anyone is thinking of doing a ‘DIY’ wedding they need to make sure they have enough people to help them set up.  Luckily for us I was asked if we needed help from lots of people so it wasn’t an issue.  Also, bear in mind travel time and distance for any one coming to do hair/make-up, food etc., if there is an accident on the road it would be worth having back up route available etc.

Lastly, don’t worry about the weather.  It will be what it will be.


Have you just got engaged?  Well congratulations!!!! I am offering FREE wedding event planning from location sourcing, to decoration, including all elements of budget planning to the first 5 couples that use my services.  For more information please contact Emma Sidebotham on 07939 093729

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