Natalie Jones and Aimée Ball have known each other since secondary school and, while it was far from love at first sight, their growing friendship soon blossomed into love.
The South Welsh pair from Pontypool always knew they would wed and, once marriage equality laws were in the pipeline, Natalie, 30, began planning a romantic proposal for a weekend away to Tenby, the place where she and Aimée, also 30, first said “I love you”.
“My romantic plans didn’t go quite according to plan when I fell ill with laryngitis a few days before and lost my voice completely,” Natalie explains. “I ended up writing ‘Marry me?’ on the sand holding out her diamond ring in readiness of a response. The look on her face was priceless!”
The brides-to-be took a year to find their perfect venue, wanting somewhere with beautiful surroundings where they could also feel comfortable and relaxed. When they stumbled on Caer Llan in Llydart they knew the search was over.
The couple wed in front of 50 friends and family on May 30, 2015, with 50 more guests attending the evening celebrations, also held at the stunning country house. Close family and friends stayed for the whole weekend, creating the relaxed and comfortable vibe the couple was after.
“Everyone really let their hair down and enjoyed themselves immensely – just the way we had planned it,” Natalie says. “I don’t think we stopped smiling all day, no matter how exhausted we were, and we really didn’t want it to end.”
Photos courtesy of Graham Davies Photography.
Natalie’s heels were sourced from Monsoon Bridal, while Aimée headed down the aisle in traditional shoes before changing into a pair of Converse lace-ups with some personalised bling.
All About Eve helped both brides select their gorgeous gowns. “We visited the store on separate occasions and the shop made sure my dress was well hidden before Aimée turned up so she couldn’t guess which one I had picked or pick the same!” Natalie says.
“I love the way that Nat keeps me grounded,” Aimée says. “She’s the best person I’ve ever met and the smartest one at that!”
Natalie’s love of flowers shone through with the couple’s gorgeous bouquets. The pair gave their ceremony flowers a second life, recycling them to become the reception centrepieces.
“We were given a really good piece of advice before the day… and that was to take each other’s hands and not let go all day. If you don’t, you’ll get lost in a sea of people and will spend the most important day of your lives without seeing each other,” Natalie says.
Bomboniere: Homemade / Brides Accessories: All About Eve, eBay / Brides Gown: Ellis, All About Eve / Brides Shoes: Monsoon, AG Meeks, Converse / Bridesmaids Dresses: Quiz / Cake: Creative Cakes by Nicola / Celebrant: Monmouthshire registrar / Ceremony Music: Playlist / Entertainment: Black Panther Discos / Flowers: Buttercup Florists / Gift Registry: Honeymoon fund / Groomsmen Attire: Dyfed Menswear / Hair: Perfect Endz / Honeymoon: Mexico / Invitations: LIttle Love Notes / Lolly Buffet: DIY / Makeup: Beauty at its Best / Photobooth: Memory Makers / Photographer: Graham Davies Photography / Rings: Crouch / Venue: Caer Llan / Venue Decor: Buttercup Florists / Wedding Night Venue: Caer Llan / Wedding Planner: Caer Llan