Maz & Shaun’s Big Fat Greek Wedding… in Sussex!

Today we’re pleased to feature Maz & Shaun’s Greek-themed wedding. We absolutely love the pastel suits, the Airstream and the Greek Taverna foodie vibes…

Q. What was the theme/style for your big day?

A. We really wanted to incorporate Maz’s Greek-Cypriot heritage but also pay homage to the gorgeous, rustic barn at Pangdean so we had lots of small touches, like olive leaves, being a consistent theme on favours, stationery and in our flowers. Equally, our food was Greek-Cypriot inspired.

Q. What was most important to you when it came to tying the knot/celebrating your marriage?

A. We wanted the day to be a real celebration of who we are as a couple and a chance for our families and friends to come together. There was a real sense of joy on the day, especially because our wedding had been postponed, and because it was one of the first big events many of us had attended since the start of the pandemic.

If we’re not going to wear dresses, I still want people to know that it’s us getting married!

Q. How did you chose your venue and suppliers?

A. We did extensive research and visited lots of different venues. This gave us a really clear idea of what we wanted, but also what we didn’t. We found Pangdean Old Barn online and after visiting, we knew instantly it was the venue for us! Straight away, the staff were warm and accommodating and we knew from the word go that they knew exactly what they were doing. In terms of suppliers, we found Instagram a really useful tool for seeking out people to contact, as it gave us an insight into each supplier’s aesthetic.

Q. Where did you get your ideas and inspiration?

A. We knew from the off that we wanted to draw from Maz’s Greek-Cypriot heritage, so when we found Pangdean Old Barn with its rustic features and beautiful gardens, it felt like a perfect fit. For example, when designing our wedding stationery, we incorporated the olive leaf which became a recurring theme throughout our wedding. This then led us to consider our flowers and the look we were going for, using lots of greenery and pastel colours. Our Pinterest accounts were full of mood boards which we were able to share with our suppliers in order to put across our vision.

We wanted a very ‘Mediterranean’ feel for the meal so people would be passing dishes around the table, almost like eating ‘Meze’ in a Greek Taverna.

Q. Tell us about your suits

A. I remember Maz saying early on, “If we’re not going to wear dresses, I still want people to know that it’s us getting married!”. We knew all along that we did not want to wear traditionally coloured suits, and we debated whether to match suits or wear different ones that complimented. Our pastel pink suits worked with our colour scheme, but also reflected the fact it was a summer wedding. HOWEVER, finding pastel men’s wedding suits proved difficult. Originally, we explored made-to-measure suits, but with all of the rescheduling of our wedding, we felt afraid to commit to such an investment. In the end, after exploring lots of options, we found our suits on ASOS of all places. Nervous as we were before they arrived, they turned out perfectly and this saved us money which enabled us to splash out elsewhere.

Q. What was on the menu?

A. One of our favourite things about Pangdean was how excited they were to experiment with a Greek-themed menu. We wanted a very ‘Mediterranean’ feel for the meal so people would be passing dishes around the table, almost like eating ‘Meze’ in a Greek Taverna. We loved how social this made our meal. Food included: chicken skewers, lamb koftes, Halloumi, Greek salad, couscous and pitta bread and dips. Our dessert was cheesecake with a raspberry and pistachio topping.

One of our favourite cocktails is Apersol Spritz and we were fortunate enough to win a competition in which they kindly provided enough Aperol for our guests to enjoy. These went down well in the summer sun! We also had Prosecco.

Our cake supplier was also keen to experiment with flavours and created a ‘best of British/Cypriot’ three-tiered cake. The layers were: rosewater and pistachio, orange and lemon drizzle and chocolate Guinness.

Q. What was the quirkiest element of the day?

A. A surprise for our guests was having a Greek ‘bouzouki’ player in the middle of the evening which got EVERYONE dancing the Greek way (imagine ‘My Big Fat Greek Wedding’)!

Our guests loved the airstream photobooth which made a real statement at the entrance to the venue. The eccentric props were great fun and they created some really fun memories for our guests! They also provided a great opportunity for us to get some cool shots with Lesley, our photographer.

We know that same-sex marriage has not always been a reality and therefore we wanted to pay homage to members of the LGBT+ community that paved the way for us. Each table was named after an LGBT+ trailblazer who came before us. The teachers in us wanted to educate our guests whilst they enjoyed their meals, and so each table also had a placard with information about the person it was named after.

During our photos, we wanted to experiment with coloured smoke-bombs. They looked so glamorous on Instagram / Pinterest but in reality it was absolute carnage in the best way possible.

Q. Tell us about your photographer – how you found them, how they fitted into the day and what you thought of your finished gallery.

A. Lesley was recommended by our venue and when we visited her website we knew that we wanted to explore her style. We knew we didn’t want lots of formal, posed pictures, but we wanted our photographer to really capture key moments, and the essence of our day. From the moment we first heard back from Lesley, we knew she was a perfect fit for our wedding day. She made us feel so at ease and the three of us didn’t stop laughing.

Lesley described herself as a ‘ninja’

We remember Lesley describing herself as a ‘ninja’ and we know now exactly what she meant by this! She caught some great candid moments, slotted in to the wedding like she was part of the wedding party and was never obtrusive or in the way of anyone/anything. As soon as we saw our finished gallery, we smiled from ear to ear. We have some amazing photos which really bring the day to life. They really capture the sense of joy that was so evident of the day. Honestly, we loved every single photo that was uploaded which is a huge credit to Lesley as we can be very fussy when it comes to photos!

Q. What was your favourite memory from the day?

A. For both of us, it was the moment that we FINALLY walked down the aisle after such a long wait and so much uncertainty. We laughed and cried through our vows and we didn’t stop laughing all day. Our faces ached the next day from so much smiling. Our mini photoshoots throughout the day (outside the airstream or deep in the fields of Pangdean) were hilarious! We never thought that these would be our favourite photos from our wedding day.

Q. What was your first dance to/what did you walk down to the aisle to?

A. Our band ‘The She AllStars’ were so accommodating in learning a new song to perform for our first dance. It was Kylie Minogue – All the Lovers, which meant that everybody could join us on the dance floor and it kicked off the evening perfectly.

When planning the music for our ceremony and reception drinks, we knew we wanted something that represented us. Shaun’s love for Beyonce and Maz’s Eurovision both played a part. Thom was really up for learning some new songs and we walked down the aisle to XO by Beyonce, signing the register to ‘Euphoria’ by Loreen’ and walking out to ‘Came Here for Love’. During the Reception drinks and ceremony, Thom played an eclectic mix, from Sean Paul to Katy Perry.

Suppliers:

Venue Pangdean Old Barn – www.pangdean.com

Photographer Lesley Burdett Photography – www.lesleyburdett.com

Cake Emily’s Mixing Bowl – www.emilysmixingbowl.co.uk

Videographer Prodrone Videography – www.prodronevideography.co.uk

Photo Booth Airstream studio photobooth – www.airstreamstudio.uk

Flowers – Bettie Rose Flowers – www.bettierose.co.uk

Transport – Lola the VW Campervan – www.lolathevwcampervan.co.uk

Band  – She AllStars – www.shemusicglobal.com

Guitarist/Vocalist – Thom Music – www.thom-music.com

Greek Musician – Viktor Mastoridis – www.viktor.mastoridis.co.uk

Sweet cart – Sweet Dreams Candy Cart – www.sweetdreamscandycart.co.uk

Hair/make-up – Janey Campbell – www.janeyhairandmakeup.com

Acrylic design (Coasters for favours) – E Creative Studio – www.ecreativestudio.co.uk

 

 

 

 

 

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