Hannah and Matt Phillips – 26th April 2022

Tell Us How You Met and All About Your Proposal …

Matt and I met over 20 year ago in Bridgnorth, through a car window! I will leave that story there, but we have had the most amazing years filled with love and adventure. We had our daughter Bea in 2016 and this was the main reason for our marriage.

I proposed to Matt, again not your average proposal! I took advantage of a leap year. I had planned to propose on the beach in Cornwall but due to biblical rain conditions this was not possible. At the time we were farm sitting near Fowey and so I ended up proposing in the old barn on the farm, that had no electricity at the time, so this was therefore at candle light, with lanterns and any candles I could find.

Bea and I had planned that Bea would hold up cards for Matt with different messages finally asking Daddy to Marry mummy. We sealed the deal with champagne and hessian string on our ring fingers. Matt told me after he guessed I was up to something as he found my rucksack stashed with small Prosecco bottles and cups, and a picnic blanket ready for the planned proposal. He did not realise that there was only one day that it could officially be done on a leap year so that bit caught him out!

Let’s Talk About The Dress And Your Journey …

I am not a girly girl and do not wear dresses all that much, so the quest for my dress was probably more nerve racking than the wedding itself!
After one failed attempt in another bridal shop I came to Shropshire Brides feeling like I might not find anything. However I should not of worried, Jackie was fantastic and helped me find something that was both practical for my wedding and one that fitted me so well and made me feel really quite special. It wasn’t flamboyant or over the top but had unusual lace detailing that made it stand out. I went for a style I would never of picked but with Jackie’s guidance I found something I didn’t want to take off!

My wedding was not the typical type of day so I needed a dress that was both not too heavy and versatile enough to be worn on the beach and climbing over rocks and sand dunes, along with possible going for a swim!!

I felt comfortable and confident, which was a big deal for me as its not something I feel an awful lot. The dress didn’t get in the way and was perfect for our style of wedding. It got covered in sand and sea water. When we got back I took if off, and just hung it up, then in the evening popped it back on for a further trip to the beach for sunset photos and it didn’t have a mark on it! Two days later I swam in it in the sea!
It has since been to a wedding party and a further vow renewal under a 500 year old tree in a beautiful Cornish garden and still again not a mark after a light wash under the cold tap!!!


How Did Your Partner React When They Saw You In Your Dress …

Matt just gave me a knowing wink when I walked up behind him with fire lantern in hand at the beach! He loved the dress and my denim jacket which was painted for the occasion with ‘Together we will be wild and Free’ on the back of it. Something very fitting for us. My daughter Bea also had a matching jacket painted with mermaid tails and her name.

Where Was Your Venue And What Made You Choose The Venue …

We did not have a venue we got married in the sea at blue hour, so before the sun rose on Holywell Bay in Cornwall. We love Cornwall and feel a great connection when we are there. It is our happy place, with us being together for such a long time our wedding wasn’t about anything other than us becoming 3. A celebration of our love and devotion to each other and our daughter. We are all wild at heart and spend so much time outdoors, hiking, climbing, wild swimming that an indoor venue was never really a consideration. When I found Cornwall Elopements I new from the minute I got onto their website that an elopement wedding was for us. The fact that it could be in our favourite place on the beach at sunrise was absolutely incredible and something I didn’t even know was possible.

Are There Any Special Memories You Would Like To Share From Your Special Day …

Walking through the large rock formations across the beach to Matt was pretty special. I was carrying a fire torch at 5.30am walking barefoot, there wasn’t a sound other than the distant waves and early morning bird song. I was surprisingly nervous considering I have known Matt for so long!

Holywell Bay is a large expanse of beach (famous for Poldark!! ) The left hand side, where we had our ceremony is rugged with huge rock formations and sea caves. After the sea ceremony we had a beach fire to warm up with Cornish mead and then had a couples shots in the sea caves and sand dunes. The whole experience was magic, having Bea with us during our handfasting ceremony and her being tied with us was a really special part of the experience too. Our celebrant was incredible and included her within our wedding story. We wrote our own words for the ceremony and me my own vows. My ring was also made from sea glass that Bea and I had previously found together on Cornish beaches, yellow for the sunset, blue for the ocean and green for the mountains. A ring like no other having so much more meaning.
Jo & Patrick our photographers had also recently been to the outer Hebrides on their honey moon and as part of the ceremony we filled small jar of sand from the spot we had our ceremony. In the jar was a beautiful pink shell they had picked for Bea from there honeymoon which was really lovely.

After our ceremony and pictures it was still not even 9am so we managed to grab a McDonald’s breakfast, got back to the Cornwall house we stayed in, have a nap and then get back up ready for a family bbq and really lovely relaxed afternoon. In the evening Bea and I got dressed back up and had pictures at sunset on the beach.

How Did You Make Your Day Unique To Your Love Story …

Our wedding was all about us, being a wedding photographer I know how big weddings become and it is so often that the wedding becomes bigger than the people. So many decisions are made for others and it gets very stressful. Our day was never going to be like that because our main reason for marriage was to become a 3 us and our daughter Bea to finally be brought together by name.

Everything about our wedding circled around us and our life together, our adventures and personalities.
Jo & Patrick our photographers are pretty wild like us too so the whole wedding was about just enjoying the moments together.
The 3am wake up was worth it!!
I didn’t want to look back and feel my wedding was like another, I wanted a unique experience and that is exactly what we had. Our photographers and celebrant made everything so incredibly special.

We have since had a vow renewal too back in Cornwall under a 500 year old tree in a beautiful secret garden on the Lizard. We were actually models for this occasion but had a real ceremony that again joined us together and we made lasting promises and wrote wishes on tissue paper that we lit and they blew up and away into the sky, how magic is that!!

Honeymoon Heaven – Where Did You Go …

We had a fab week in Cornwall before and after the wedding!

Perfect Planning – Can You Give Future Brides Any Tips For Planning The Big Day …

Make it about you and what is important to you, do not make sacrifices to accommodate others.

Suppliers …

Cornwall Elopements – Jo & Patrick the most amazing photographers, elopement organisers and now our friends
Wild Blessing Ceremony’s Cornwall – our incredible celebrant Jacki who we would not of wanted to had our journey without.
South Jewellery – Wedding Ring / Sea Glass Bracelet
Nikki Whiston Inks- Denim Jacket Design
Flowers – House of Tiger
Matt suit was from Marc Darcy
He wore Haviana flip flops
I went bare foot
Bea wore her vans and a tutu specially made for the wedding in blues for the ocean. Sadly to company who made it is no longer trading.

Photographer: Cornwall Elopments

Hair Stylists: My Sister in Law did my hair at 3am

MUA: Did my own

Florist: A really good friend sent me some dried flowers for the day, as I had not planned flowers

Wedding Planner: Cornwall Elopements & Myself

Cake: We did not have a cake at our wedding, we had one at a party a couple of months later which was a wedding/40th for my husband. Our close friend CalicoandCake made us an amazing cake a replica of the beach we got married on!

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