Bethany and Vincent first met at their local gay club, The Scene in Lincoln, on 9th November 2018. “It felt like fate, because neither of us should have been out,” says Bethany. “Vinny had just flown back from Hong Kong and was jet lagged and my friends had already gone home. However, I’d made friends with people who turned out to be his friends. They introduced me to him and we found out we had a lot in common. For example, we lived opposite each other the year before and he went to uni in my home town before that. I had also been to Vincent’s home town for my university course.”

Finding ‘The One’

“Our first date was a few days later at Starbucks,” says Bethany. “It was just meant to be coffee but we didn’t want it to end. So, he invited me back to meet his dog and for some fish and chips. We then went on another night out and he introduced me to all his mates. Our first date lasted about 20 hours in the end and it was the best. I felt like he was the one straight away and I think it was the same for him.”

A proposal at the theatre

Vinny proposed in October 2021. “We were at Nottingham Theatre Royal to watch my favourite musical, Chicago,” says Bethany. “In the interval, we went to get a drink but I was led to an area that had been cordoned off. There was a table with a bottle of Prosecco and a present, which was a fancy Grimm’s Fairytale book that Vinny had cut a hole in for a ring box. He’d also written ‘Will you marry me?’ on the inside cover. When I turned around Vinny was on one knee behind me. I called him an idiot before I said yes but it was absolutely perfect! I was ecstatic, as it was the perfect way to propose, at my favourite show, with my favourite hobby (reading) and with my mum’s engagement ring, which he’d asked her for a few weeks before. Plus, a bit of booze to top it off!”

Shopping for the dress

Bethany found her dream dress at Rotherham WED2B. “We only gave ourselves six months to plan the wedding, so I looked up dresses straight away and found WED2B. Knowing that you can take away your dress the same day was the perfect stress relief. I travelled over with my mum and mother-in-law and had a great experience. The store assistant made sure that I was being honest with myself and not being swayed by my mother/mother-in-law’s opinions. So, I came away with the perfect dress and accessories, thanks to her.”

Choices, choices!

“I tried on the four dresses we chose and then the wild card the store assistant picked,” says Bethany. “There were three I liked, so it was difficult. One had a bejewelled back and the other two were A-line style and corseted. The corsets won me over because they gave me more confidence and a better hourglass figure. I also couldn’t get over the beauty of the Molly gown. The blush colour just suited me better, I think. I loved the way the corset sat and the bit of sparkle from the beads. Molly had everything I wanted and I felt truly beautiful. I think the Lana off-the-shoulder straps really made the dress perfect, too. They tied the whole look together.” (For similar styles try Daykota, Martisse and Maud)

Just six months to go

The couple married on 19th April 2022 at Holmewood Hall in Peterborough. “Vinny wanted to get married in a big castle or house and I found Holmewood, which was big and grand but still felt intimate and beautiful,” says Bethany. “I loved that everything was onsite, so we could move through the day easily without having to worry about transport. You could also have the first dance under the chandelier by the staircase, which just felt perfect and gave the best photographs. We chose it largely for the staircase and also for the library, so I could have pictures with the books. We booked a date for just six months after the engagement, as there was a discount for a spring wedding.”

The big day

"We had a party at the cottage onsite the night before,” says Bethany. “I even let the groom and his groomsmen enjoy the hot tub there before kicking them out at midnight. My bridesmaids and I then had a chilled morning with croissants and coffee, before we moved over to the main site at 11am. I had my hair and makeup done in the bridal suite but no one kept me informed of the time. I was having fun with the photographers, until I realised I only had 10 minutes to get into my dress. So, I was late to the interview part beforehand and therefore the ceremony. I think I was about half an hour late in the end!”

The main event

We had a flower man throwing petals and my mum walked me down the aisle to ‘The Book of Love’ by Peter Gabriel,” says Bethany. “We wrote our own vows and got quite a few laughs for them. It was stuff like, ‘I promise to not hold it against you when you throw a blue shell at me in Mario Kart’. The most special moment was walking down the aisle, because Vinny started crying when he saw me. It’s what every girl wants! It’s won him many brownie points with my mum, because she got to see how much he loves me. We walked back down the aisle to ‘Forever My Love’ by J Balvin and Ed Sheeran, as I love Spanish music. Then we got absolutely covered in confetti!”

Cocktails, canapés and chatting

“After the ceremony we had 15 minutes together for cocktails and canapés,” says Bethany. “Then we went out and mingled before doing the group shots and having a walk round the grounds for some romantic shots. These included a piggy-back, and Vinny dropped me afterwards, so we had a laugh as I was sat on the floor! The photographers were scared I would be a bridezilla about it but I didn’t care, it was funny. Me laughing on the floor is now one of my mum’s favourite pictures. We then had the wedding breakfast and speeches. The best man’s speech was the only thing that had me worried but it was pretty good. Our first dance was to Lady Gaga’s ‘La Vie En Rose’ because we decided to be official while watching the film A Star Is Born. “

Books, games and a burgundy wedding

“The main theme was books and Pokémon but there were many other bits of our personality thrown in,” says Bethany. “Favours were a homemade flower, made from the book Vinny proposed with. The centrepieces were also books with a fish bowl of cacti in for certain people to take home and keep growing as a reminder of the day. Our cake toppers were Pokémon (him being Charmander and mine Squirtle) and our hashtag was #ichooseliu. There were also Lindt rabbits on the table because we have the two most adorable bunnies at home.”

Bees and paper flowers

“Also, because of my obsession with bees, I cut out bee confetti for the tables and the confetti thrown on us. It took forever! Paper flowers were pretty much everywhere, including on the ‘In Memory’ table we did for my dad and grandma and his grandparents. We had burgundy wedding theme, with burgundy, navy and blush flowers lining the staircase and column aisles for the ceremony room. Our burgundy wedding cake was three different things, cupcakes on the top layer, cheesecake in the middle and a rainbow cake on the bottom. Both the cheesecake and cake were made by Vinny’s mum and they were a big hit.”

Party time!

In the evening we had a DJ who played a lot of Kpop and Spanish and French music, so it was great!” says Bethany. “And we had a board game room to keep the guests entertained if they didn’t want to dance, but luckily most people did. We also had entertainment we didn’t plan on, as the flower man kept stripping off and making everyone laugh with his bad dances. Then Vinny gave me a lap dance when the song ‘Pony’ came on, much to the horror of his mother, but all of our mates were cheering him on. It was honestly amazing!”

The best bits…

“My favourite moments were the piggyback and Vinny giving me a lap dance, but everything about our burgundy wedding was magical,” says Bethany. “Vinny says his best bit was me walking down the aisle to meet him, and also walking round the grounds with him getting goofy pictures. The photographers told us we kissed more than their usual couples!”

My top tips…

“Make sure you have someone keeping an eye on the time, so you stay on schedule,” says Bethany. “It was so stressful trying to get dressed in 10 minutes, as I then didn’t have time to do the shots with bridesmaids before the ceremony. It’s also worth doing a practice run in your dress beforehand because I found out in those 10 minutes that I couldn’t move my arms above waist level because the straps had been sewed on too tight. During the ceremony, Vinny lifted my arm up to celebrate and popped the strap straight off. I had to stand and fix it at the top of the aisle with everyone staring confused!”

Bethany and Vincent’s Dream Team

Photographer: Adrian Dewey

Venue: Holmewood Hall

Wedding dresses Rotherham: WED2B

Videographer: Josh Hyde

Burgundy wedding stylist: Allensis

Hair and makeup: Lipstick and Hairpins

If you would like us to feature your big day like this burgundy wedding, then please click here to share your story and photos with us and we’ll be in touch. Or click here for more details about WED2B’s bridal shops Rotherham