A stunning Signature Collection sheath with intricate lace and and a statement back was a dream look for this lively day at a wedding venue Norfolk

Josie and Mike Walking hand in hand outside while their guests throw confetti over them both.

Josie and Mike first met 12 years ago through mutual friends in a local bar. “We had both recently become single and I certainly wasn't looking for another serious relationship,” says Josie. “However, we knew instantly we had a special connection and couldn't wait to start getting to know each other. Our first date was at a local restaurant, which we still go to regularly all these years later.”

An image of Josie and Mike's wedding decor and an image of Josie stroking a small owl.

An unexpected proposal

“Mike had always been upfront about his feelings around marriage, that he wasn't keen and didn't think it would change anything between us,” says Josie.

“So, after waiting over nine years, I assumed it wasn't going to happen.”

“Then, in June 2022, we had tickets to go to a beautiful place called Fairhaven,” says Josie. “It’s a 130-acre ancient woodland and water garden in the Norfolk Broads. I often drag Mike out on long beach walks, he enjoys them really! Unfortunately, the night before, Mike had a car accident that wrote his car off. He was shaken up but thankfully had no major injuries. We sat in A&E until the early hours and I wanted to cancel our day out, but he was adamant it would do him good."

"I couldn't understand why he was so determined!"

"Then, at the end of a lovely walk, amongst the wildlife and picturesque gardens, Mike dropped to one knee and popped the question. Some friends still say it was thanks to the accident and the bump on the head!”

An image of Josie in her wed2b wedding dress and holding her bouquet at her wedding venue Norfolk.

Discovering The Signature Collection...

“Lots of my friends have worn dresses from wed2b and I knew this would be the store to go to,” says Josie. “We were greeted at wed2b Norwich by a lovely young lady called Darcy, who had only been in the job just over a month. She listened to what I thought I wanted, discussed lots of options with me and the girls (my mum and three bridesmaids) and also brought out some different styles."

"Darcy was a dream, so friendly and knowledgeable and really put a nervous bride at ease!”

Josie and Mike during their wedding ceremony performing the tie trasition at their wedding venue Norfolk.

Josie chose Valdez, a sleek crepe sheath with intricate lace appliqués and a statement low back.

“It was the third dress I tried on and I knew that was it,” says Josie.

“This was 'The One'. I loved everything about it, especially the train. I also bought a low back Wunderskirt to wear too.”

If you love Valdez’s statement low back then you’re going to adore these three catwalk-style sheaths too. Make sure you try on Frederika, Gaia and Daniel when you visit. We don’t think you’ll be disappointed!

A stylish wedding venue Norfolk 

The couple married at a place called the Barn at Woodlands, a wedding venue Norfolk hidden in the countryside near the village of Stokesby. “I knew there was a wedding venue around there, as I remember having worked there twice as a waitress when I was young,” says Josie. “It was a breathtaking old barn, which I longed to add our twist to.”

Josie and Mike walking hand in hand with their wedding guests throwing confetti over them. Also an image of a bridesmaids holdng an owl.

The big day

“I got ready at the venue with my mum, auntie and three bridesmaids,” says Josie. “The weather was perfect for September with hours of sunshine and temperatures of 28℃. My mum - my best friend, my rock - walked me down the aisle. Our ceremony was very different. We had already married at the local registry office, as the barn didn't hold a wedding license, so we had lots of fun! My mum and I walked in to Beyonce’s ‘Smash Into You, we made vows to our guests and they made vows to us. We also read our own vows to each other and we physically tied the knot with a hand-fasting ceremony."

"Then we had our best man bring our rings in via a barn owl!"

"Everyone said how relaxed and enjoyable our ceremony was - we wanted anything but boring.”

Back view of Josie in her low back wedding dress mingling with guests. Another image of Josie with 3 female wedding guests all holding a glass of bubbly.

Drinks, canapés… and owls!

After the ceremony guests enjoyed drinks and canapés in the gardens. “We also had three owls on perches for guests to hold and take pictures with,” says Josie. “The barn owl who came in with the rings was called Sarah and I have some lovely photos with her. The owls were our best entertainment by far and the guests and venue staff loved them."

"They'd never seen owls at a wedding before."

"They also kept the guests busy when we snuck off to have our professional pics taken.” 

Two images of the owl's which made an appearance at Josie and Mike's wedding venue Norfolk.

A rustic colour theme

The look for the day was rustic with the main colour being mauve. “We decorated the barn ourselves, with large demijohns, dried foliage, wheat, pampas and fairy lights,” says Josie. “I kept things simple, with our table plan matching the invites and 'welcome to our wedding’ sign. There was a pallet order of the day, wooden numbers on tables and a very rustic wedding post box (all borrowed from my mum’s friend who is a carpenter).” 

Outside image of Josie mingling with her wedding guests at her wedding venue Norfolk.

Raving the night away!

Dinner was chicken, beef and a vegetarian main with a dessert option and a beautiful three-tier, semi-naked cake with raspberry and white chocolate, lemon and chocolate layers. “We didn't have favours but made beautiful crafty name tags that many guests took home as their keepsake,” says Josie. “There was a singer who did an amazing slow version of the song ‘Latch’ by Disclosure for our first dance. We then had a DJ in the evening playing guests' requests from the invites, with an hour of drum and bass and dance music at the end. We are ravers!"

"Everything was so 'us', relaxed, funny, fun and exciting.”

Back view of Josie and Mike walking around the grounds of their wedding and a front view of Josie and Mike walking hand in hand.

The best bits…

“Walking in as a daughter to my mum and walking out as a wife to my new husband.”

And for other Signature brides… 

“Just don't panic - everything will be fine!”

We love it when brides take our looks and make them their own. So, if you’ve enjoyed Josie and Mike’s chic wedding venue Norfolk, then we’d love to see how you styled your own Signature look. Just click here to share your story and photos with us and we’ll be in touch.

Stay bold & brilliant!
The Signature Collection team

Josie and Mike’s Dream Team

Photographer: Sam Gee

Wedding Venue Norfolk: Barn at Woodlands, Stokesby 

Wedding dresses Norwich: wed2b

Flowers: Charlotte Staff Flowers 

Suits: Slaters Menswear 

Rings: Aleks Jewellers 

Norwich Music: Grant Ley

DJ: Nevv Moore 

Video: Lewis Parker James Films 

Celebrant: The Ceremony People

Make-up: Eleanor Harnden

Bar: My Horse Box Bar