Linda and Luke's Cosy Christmas Wedding at Great Fosters

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Mr + Mrs Hooper

21st December 2019 | Great Fosters, Egham

Instagram: @lifewiththehoops & @mrslindahooper | Photos: Kit Myers

Linda was the queen of Instagram Christmas weddings last year as she shared her journey to her dream festive day and we just had to kick off our Christmas Weddings series with her and husband Luke. They literally decked the halls and incorporated Christmas in every way possible; snow confetti, festive  red bouquets, crackers, and the most cosy cake we've ever seen! The bride's mum and dad walked her down the aisle together to 'The Power of Love' to a very emotional groom. Mrs Hooper tells us all about the planning, her DIYs, and shares all the details of her magical day nearly one year on...

Tell us all about your festive wedding theme!

Me and Luke absolutely love Christmas and everything about it and when we were looking at possible wedding dates and months, we saw that the 21st of December was on a Saturday and well it all just fell into place! The number 21 is a special number to us, and always has been with our anniversary being 21st September etc. I really wanted to make the venue look magical Christmas, but not tacky Christmas so we opted for reds, golds and greens and personally I think it worked very well! I loved every part of our venue and the d├ęcor that went into building it into our dream venue! 

What was your favourite part of the day? 

It’s so hard to choose our favourite part of your wedding day as the day as whole was incredible and I would relive it every single day if I could! I think a very special moment for me was just before I walked down the aisle I heard the first few notes of ‘the power of love’ and I got the most bizarre sensation. I’d heard this song a million times, I'd listened to it all round the house but at that moment I knew it was time for me to marry the love of my life and I just looked at my mum who was on the left of me and she went ‘here we go baby girl’ and then I turned to my dad on the right side of me and he said ‘are you ready?!’ and I took one massive deep breathe in as the doors opened and the second I saw Luke (who was crying his eyes out lol) I relaxed and it was almost as if no one else was in the room but me and him! It even gives me goosebumps now! 

What was the most emotional moment of the day? 

Well much to my surprise, Luke absolutely BALLED his eyes out! Like I mean proper crying and I had no idea he was going to it lol! We read somewhere that you should play the grooms favourite song just before you walk down to calm his nerves and well he tells me now that was stupid idea because it made him cry and get nervous haha! – I think I did more crying on the lead up to the day with stress then actual wedding day because It was so calm and just amazing! 

Advice for future brides… 

As every bride will give advice, and I read so many blogs that said it but didn’t believe it but its DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF! And its sooooo true. No one but you will know that candle isn’t in the right place, or the sign you wanted on the left is on the right... trust your venue because they know it better then anyone and where things will look the best! I wrote a 3 page word doc for the venue where I wanted everything and when I woke up on the morning of the wedding and went downstairs to check and few things were different but they made it look incredible and I agreed on their changes! When you wake up on that wedding morning, nothing else can be done so honestly stick your phone on do not disturb the night before and be really present in the moment!

Song you walked down the aisle to: 

  • The Power of Love – Gabrielle Aplin (Piano)

Ceremony Songs: 

  • Its All About You – McFly 
  • L-O-V-E - Nat King Cole  
  • Never Too Much - Luther Vandross 

Song for walking back up the aisle as a married couple:  

  • (This Will Be) An Everlasting Love - Natalie Cole 

First Dance: (we had three because I couldn’t pick haha) 

  • You’ve got a friend in me – Randy Newman  
  • Can’t take my eyes off you – from the musical Jersery Boys 
  • September – Earth wind and fire 

Me and my dad had a bit of different dance – we wanted something serious but fun so we went went Beauty and The Beast where the music cut, and then went into House of Pain – Jump Around and everyone had glow sticks and joined us on the dance floor it was pretty epic!!! 

Did you make any Wedding DIYs? 

I made pretty much everything for our wedding. I made the save the dates, invites, all the signs, table plans etc! it was pretty epic but also very timing consuming and stressful having to buy it all but I wouldn’t change anything. I spent hours on pinterest sorting through ideas of what I wanted. My two favourite DIYs were the Jingle Bells which were the name places! They took me over 6 hours to make but they were so worth it and my Dad made us a giant Christmas tree for the sweet table and I LOVE it and will bring it out every year with all my Christmas decorations 

Tell us all about the dress and dress shopping… 

If I could go dress shopping again, I would, a million times over. I loved every second of putting on pretty gowns and veils and feeling so special. I always knew I wanted a big-ish dress as I’ve ALWAYS been called ‘princess’ – but family, by Luke and even work collegues haha! So I knew I wanted to have a big dress but I tried on every single style just to make sure and if I had it my way, I would have had a different dress every hour lol! I loved so many of them but I knew the second I put my dress on, it was for me. I still had wobbles like I think many brides do, this was about the straps because they were separate from the dress and I got scared they would look weird but my seamstress did an amazing job to fit them and make me feel like a million dollars! 

Best wedding splurge:  

100% the Photographer and Videographer. I’m so glad we opted for both as even now, I must watch our trailer video back once a week and re look at the photos! They are memories that will last forever and I’m so grateful.

How did you choose your venue? 

Now this is a bit of a funny story. Me and Luke got engaged in September 2017 and we had talked about weddings a lot before so I kinda knew where I wanted to check out beforehand. We viewed a venue called Littleton Park House inside of Shepperton Studios and the second I walked in, I knew it was our venue. The film studios meant a lot to me as my dad has worked on films since I was baby so it almost felt right to get married in them! So it was done and booked and we were so excited. Fast forward to April 2019, I was at work and I get a phone call from the venue expecting it to be about menu tasting and I heard the words ‘I’m so sorry, we can no longer hold your wedding here’ – I cried, A LOT! I had no idea what I was going to do! I went straight home to meet my parents and just cried in my mums arms! But I knew I had to get it sorted so I started to research new venues free on that day, I didn’t think we would find one with it being 8 months before the wedding but Great Fosters was free!

It was a venue my mum dreamed of me getting married at but we never looked before I thought Littleton Park was the one. We called them, viewed it 2 days after and had new contracts drawn up and that was it! Honestly count my lucky stars that Great Fosters was free as they had 5 weddings in a row that weekend so how the Saturday was free I will never know, someone was defiantly looking after us that day! – I would recommend Great Fosters for a wedding to every single person it was just unbelievable, they made me feel like I was royalty from the second I arrived on the Friday, and left on the Sunday afternoon!  

Tell us about the cake... 

Oh my, our wedding cake was everything I had dreamed of and more. Our cake maker Jordan is an absolutely genius! Fun fact, I actually went to school with Jordan and few of my friend had had some of his cakes before so I knew I had to have him do to our wedding cake. He came to my mums and we tried the amazing samples and came up with a design that honestly, when I saw it in real life I could have cried. I knew I wanted it to be Christmas themed of course but Jordan went above all my expectations. The bottom tier had garlands all around it, the second tier was made out to look like a door with a big wreath on that said “The Hoopers” and the top tier was alike a cable knit jumper and ended with two Twitter birds on top (me and Luke met on twitter in 2009) – it was the most amazing cake and I would recommend Jordan to everyone! I cant wait for him to make future cakes for us! 

Is there anything you wish you'd done differently?

I wish we had gone out for evening photos, just the two if us but we were so wrapped up in enjoying time with our friends and family we just forgot lol! We did have amazing sparkler shots which are some of my fave photos but I brought this white cape that I wanted to wear in the evening for photos but we were just having way too much fun mingling with everyone in the bar and on the dance floor!  

Were there any surprises on the day?

Originally, we ordered chairs because the chairs in Great Fosters were like old meeting chairs and I didn’t want chair covers. But on the morning of the wedding they were late! They didn’t arrive in time for the ceremony and when my dad called me in the Bridal suite to tell me I went ‘yeah and what?’ I was so calm it was crazy. Luckily Great Fosters had had some new chairs delivered a few weeks earlier, nice grey ones, so they were put in the ceremony room and the Gold and Red chairs we hired were in the reception room so it worked out in the end.

Tell us about your Honeymoon...

We couldn’t decide where to go on honeymoon for ages but luckily because I work in AP I knew a few travel companies so contacted one of them who sent me over a million different quotes for pure luxury which is exactly what we wanted. We toyed with going to Bali, Maldives, Thailand etc but we ended up going to Mexico which I’m so glad about now, we had he BEST 2 weeks ever and there was so much to do which is what I wanted. I wanted to be able to relax but also go out and explore! Our hotel was called Beloved Hotel Playa Mujeres and I would recommend it to everyone that wanted 2 weeks of luxury. 

Tell us about your wedding favours...

Our favours were a bit random! But I didn’t want to go traditional. So we opted for Pens! Now I know that sounds so random but honestly, our guests went mad of them and I think only a handful of people didn’t take them home which was probably mostly men lol! But I had comments weeks after asking if I had anymore left because they write so nice that my friends and family wanted more lol! We also did giant gold coins because its Christmas and everyone loves a gold coin at Christmas!  

Venue: Great Fosters  

Photographer: Kit Myers

Videographer: Digital Weddings

Florist:  The Fine Flowers Company

Cake: Phresh Prince of Buttercream 

MUA: Helen Andrews

Hair:Hair by Ajay

Shoes: Rachel Simpson

Bridesmaids dresses:  Wed2B 

Flower girl dresses: Ebay 

Suits: DoBells.com 

Wedding Rings: Beaverbrooks 

Band/DJ: PianoDJ 

Photobooth: Uni Entertainment

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