Garden Party Wedding

Arabella Foss-sims, 26, married Charlie Dupont, 27, in Beaminster Dorset, in June 2011. She says:

We wanted a traditional country wedding, but with quirky touches. Hence the Indian-fabric bunting and Charlie's red pick-up truck as our transport to the reception.

Our first decision was the date. Our venue was Charlie's parents' home and we wanted to have it on a weekend in May or June because of the weather. The garden is at its best then.

The crockery and glassware cost more than we'd imagined. We spend more than double the £500 we had budgeted. With hindsight, this was unrealistic for the 180 guests.

Our best bargains were 18 vintage ceramic jugs, £9 each from the wholesale website Michaeldark.co.uk

The marquee was the biggest extravagance. We had a four-pole design instead of the standard frame because the detailing, drapery and height we beautiful. It added about £100 to the cost, but was worth it.

Although the day was formal in terms of the dress code and order of service, it was incredibly relaxed. The dance floor was stil packed at 2am.

The catering team was fantastic. The food was delicious - it included roast lamb with dauphinoise potatoes and raspberry mousse. To cater for our crowd so brilliantly was a real feat.

My top tip: Our photographer Nigel Ashfield advised ushers to get friends and family ready and in the right order for group photos, so the whole process was organised and relatively quick.

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