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  • Writer's pictureLisa Flahant

Real life wedding: Jess and Chris

Jess and Chris’ dreamily romantic wedding took place in the beautiful orchard of Jess’ family home in west Cornwall on Saturday 1 July 2023…

…. And it was a day full of fun, love and laughter, and some unexpected sunshine - all thanks to a sausage!! We first came across Jess and Chris just over a year before their big day, and it was the result of a rather fortuitous mutual connection. Our couple had booked one of our favourite photographers Andy of U Got The Love, who we’ve worked with many times before, and he said to them – “If you’re booking a celebrant, you HAVE to book Celebrant in Cornwall!” (The cheque’s in the post, Andy!)

Then following a very lovely video chat with our couple, who are based in sunny Bournemouth, we discovered that they’d already booked a wedding planner, the gorgeous Jen from Weddings Made in Cornwall – another top supplier and favourite of ours! So we were super-delighted when Chris and Jess said to us,

We'd be totally thrilled if you would be our celebrant for our wedding! It feels like we've hit the jackpot meeting you!

Awww! We felt the same way! The process of working with Jess and Chris was so easy and enjoyable – they were extremely open, there were so many stories to share, and they were keen to explore ideas of making their ceremony very participative. Which led us to decide on opening with some 'community' vows and a ring warming ritual to ensure every one of the 80 guests could actively contribute to the ceremony. While we debated the inclusion of readings, one thing Jess and Chris were quite sure about was writing their own vows, with some support from us. (This proved to be rather amusing, since Chris was very confident about writing his promises and Jess less so, but in the end it was Jess who wrote a killer set of vows, and Chris was encouraged to do a little more homework on his!)

On completion of the first draft, we were delighted with our couple’s response:

Thank you so much for the ceremony – your ability to capture the journey of our relationship is astonishing and we’re so thrilled with what you’ve pulled together. We’ve talked a lot about readings and have decided not to have any – through the ring warming, such a beautiful ceremony script and our own vows it’s already going to feel so special and personal.

The three of us met at Jess’ family home some weeks before the big day, to chat in person, look at the set-up and where best to seat the guests, test out the acoustics and find the perfect place for the confetti throw – plus it was the ideal opportunity to meet their gorgeous dog Clemmie, for lots of fuss and cuddles! As the days counted down, it became clear that wedding planner Jen had organised everything beautifully, but there was one thing even Jen could not control - and that was the weather. And while there *was* a wet weather plan, Jess and Chris really wanted the open air ceremony they’d been dreaming of. And the conditions were VERY mixed in the lead up – until Jess and Chris discovered the tradition of burying a sausage the night before a wedding to guarantee good weather – and, incredibly, it worked! The next day, the sun shone brightly, and even better, crazy Clemmie didn’t dig up the sausage and undo all the good work! Chris was on hand to welcome all the guests as they arrived, and despite some good support from his boys, it was evident that he was feeling quite emotional about the proceedings; meanwhile Jess was making the most of getting ready with her crew of favourite people, including four bridesmaids and a man of honour.

When the moment came, and emotions *might* have got the better of Chris, Jess' Dad Andrew escorted his beautiful daughter to the ceremony location, and the proceedings opened with a romantic ritual to warm the wedding rings, all under the watchful guise of best man Michael. Originally we had wondered whether Clemmie might look after the rings, but it turned out she was happiest mooching around the ceremony space saying hello to everyone and photobombing wherever possible.

There was a lot of love for this ceremony from the guests, but there were also a lot of laughs! From hearing how our couple first met at the tender age of 15, before Chris broke Jess’ heart like only teenage boys know how to, to their reconnecting in later years and their travels around the world, with years of long distance adventures, and then Chris’ quite ‘unique’ proposal of marriage. The personal vows were a big hit with everyone, and the wedding rings were brimming with much joy and positive energy from all the guests before they were placed gently on Jess and Chris’ fingers. And the ceremony concluded with probably the craziest amount of confetti we’ve ever seen thrown!

(There are scroll arrows on the right - about half way down the page - so you can see some of the great images captured by Andy!

Being such lovely people, Chris and Jess were predictably generous in their feedback:

When we first met with Lisa we instantly knew she was the celebrant for us. We loved everything about working with her and she exuded warmth at every interaction. Lisa loves her job and you can absolutely tell. She took so much time to really get to know us, and she managed to craft a ceremony that reflected us so very well. From recounting the history of our relationship through to hearing Lisa bring it to life on the day was such an emotional experience that we'll always remember.

​Lisa wrote the most beautiful, personal, moving and funny ceremony which made us feel so special. Lisa, thank you for everything, especially for keeping Chris from having a full on emotional breakdown whilst waiting for Jess to walk down the aisle!! We can't tell you how many of our guests told us it was the BEST ceremony they'd ever been to...

We miss you already Lisa, and for anyone thinking of booking you as their celebrant, just do it. You will absolutely not be disappointed; you would be making a very wise choice, and one that will benefit you and your guests. We love you Lisa, thank you so much for being simply phenomenal. Simply the best!

Luckily we have stayed in touch with Jess and Chris, otherwise we would miss them too! But their words did make us a little emotional; we always feel supremely lucky to work with a couple who are as invested in their ceremony as much as we are.

So a big, big thanks to Jess and Chris and Clemmie for coming into our lives, and also to Jen for making everything work like a dream, as well as Andy at U Got The Love for being an all-round awesome human being! Dream team!

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