When love is in the air, what better way to celebrate and embrace nature with a beautiful orchard-themed wedding, on the Chapel House Estate, Minster, Kent?
Whether you’re interested in rustic chic or classic elegance wedding Chapel House Estate offers a delightful outdoor space – a ceremony ‘room’ outside during British Summer Time, that is more romantic than traditional weddings held in banquet halls or churches. And where we and our Head Gardener encourage biodiversity.
Celebrate your love in the perfect alfresco setting
Wedding venues are the cornerstones of your wedding. Therefore, choosing the right wedding venue has to be your main consideration when starting your wedding journey.
Choosing the right wedding venue must therefore reflect your style and personality. From grand modern barns to rustic barns to charming pretty orchards and farms, wedding venues set the scene for your celebration, playing an instrumental role in crafting the memorable celebration. The walk down the aisle and saying ‘I do’ is of course, the main reason for the day. So what could be more perfect than hosting your vows outdoors? Consequently, orchard-themed wedding venues are becoming increasingly popular for couples as they allow you to celebrate your love uniquely and meaningfully day in the prettiest outdoor spaces.
From invitations to decor, an orchard-themed wedding is a wonderful way to embrace the natural beauty of your love.
Under the expert guidance of our Head Gardener, Juliet, Chapel House Estate has continued the eco-friendly gardening practices of the previous owner. The previous owner played a vital role in the Charity the National Garden Scheme in Kent, which we continue to support. Our commitment to a sustainable garden has created a beautiful, environmentally conscious orchard with a wildflower meadow, where we have allowed the grasses to grow a little longer and we have encouraged the wildflowers to get established. In doing so, we have provided you with a beautiful outdoor, natural and sustainable setting for your special day that will enchant your guests.
Romantic and whimsical orchard weddings
Orchard-themed weddings are a delightful way to celebrate your love. When it comes to orchard-themed weddings, timing is everything. Please carefully consider the time of year you wish to tie the knot, as the seasons significantly shape your overall event. As outdoor weddings become more popular, you can book your venue and vendors well in advance to avoid disappointment. Usually, couples book Chapel House Estate at least 18 months before to ensure they get their summer date!
How do you personalise your orchard wedding?
A summer outdoor orchard wedding is an excellent opportunity to showcase your style. Whether you’re the bride, groom, or wedding party member, your outfit can make a big impression. Choosing the ideal outfits is, therefore, an important consideration.
Your outfits set the tone for your alfresco day and should complement the outdoor setting.
For The Guys
When it comes to choosing your wedding tailoring, consider the outdoor setting. The first suit style is the classic tuxedo. A tuxedo is a timeless choice for a summer outdoor wedding. If you’re looking for a classic tuxedo that will never go out of style, stick with a black or white colour palette.
The second suit style is the three-piece suit. A three-piece suit is an excellent choice for a summer outdoor wedding because it’s stylish and practical. The jacket and trousers can be worn together or separately, so you’ll always be prepared for weather changes. Colour-wise, you can go for neutral shades or pastels, or to make a strong style statement choose a suit in vivid colours like hunter green seen here from the styled shoot with Chic Wedding & Events.
The third suit style is the linen suit. A linen suit is an excellent choice for a summer outdoor wedding because it’s relaxed and comfortable. Linen is a natural fabric that breathes well, so you’ll stay cool even in the hottest weather. See Georgiana’s dad walking her down the aisle at Chapel House Estate in the Orchard.
For the girls
Summer outdoor weddings are perfect for wearing a chic wedding dress. Whether you’re looking for a classic silhouette or a minimalist look, there’s a wedding dress that will suit your summer outdoor orchard wedding perfectly. In addition to finding a style you love, it’s essential to consider the overall aesthetic of your wedding, the time of day that your ceremony will take place, and what will keep you comfortable during British summertime without sacrificing on style.
A wedding dress reflects a bride’s style and establishes the mood for the day. The ideal wedding dress not only reflects the bride’s personality but gives the bride self-assurance and ideally works in harmony with the outdoor venue and romantic ambience. Choosing the perfect outdoor wedding dress is, therefore a truly special and meaningful experience.
For a contemporary twist, consider a two-piece wedding dress or trouser suit featuring separates that let you change your evening look.
For a free-spirited bride, who wants to look effortlessly chic but be comfortable, you can’t go wrong wearing a bohemian, whimsical, romantic and carefree boho-style wedding dress
The Apple Tree Orchard at Chapel House Estate is managed sustainably, so another consideration is to choose a more eco-friendly rental or repurposed vintage elegant gown. Perhaps a gown you’ve always loved and admired, pulled down from the attic or the back of your mother’s wardrobe, carefully wrapped up and stored by your granny or even great granny after their big day!
Tips on how to make your orchard wedding a success
Choosing the right time of year to get married is an important factor when considering an orchard wedding. Kent County Council will only marry you outside during British Summertime. As a result of this legal stipulation, you can be married in late spring when all the apple blossom forms a natural confetti carpet as it falls to the ground, and your guests will feel like they’ve stepped into a fairy tale.
Marry alfresco during the summer when the leafed-up apple trees provide natural shade from the sun for your guests and the wild meadow is waist height. Your third option is to hold a more rustic wedding when the meadow has been cut, the apples ripen, and the daylight becomes more hazy. If you are legally getting married at Chapel House Estate, we reserve your date and time with Kent County Council after booking us.
Orchard wedding inspiration
As you begin planning your orchard-themed wedding, we recommend you pay close attention to the details. By concentrating on the small details, things will come together to create a cohesive and beautiful event. Start by selecting a colour palette that reflects the hues of an orchard in spring, summer or orchards. Whites, pinks, apple green peaches for a spring wedding, meadow yellows and cornflower blue for summer and for autumn, choose a golden autumn colour palette with earthy tones, like rusty orange, or why not go for a combination of colours like the new style Cottagecore that takes a country garden look and feel.
Picking your dream team
One of the most important aspects of wedding planning is finding the right vendor team to help make your vision a reality. From your photographer to your cake designer, you must find vendors you mesh well with and understand your style. If you book your orchard wedding at Chapel House Estate, you are given access to our password-protected page, The Little Green Book of Recommended Suppliers, to help and support you in creating the perfect wedding day.
Your wedding invitations
Your wedding invitation can set the tone for your orchard-themed wedding. Choose invitation cards to reflect the Orchard seasonal cycle with apple blossom for spring or fruit-themed designs for autumn.
Your welcome drinks
When your guests arrive on the Chapel House Estate, why not include an inviting barrow of chilled cider (or beer) or an apple cider bar on the new terrace next to Thorne Barn?
For your younger guests, chilled apple juice or elderflower cordial in tall glasses keeps everyone in the spirit of your day and puts everyone in a relaxed mood.
For your perfect spot to exchange your vows
Decorate the natural orchard avenue aisle with hanging lanterns, and use pretty ribbons to tie back chairs, but don’t forget to ask your florist or stylist to do this, as we will be crazy busy setting up your whole wedding. Add rugs so you’ll feel like you’re floating on magic carpets as you walk down the aisle.
When planning how many aisles ends you need at Chapel House Estate, we lay out the outdoor wooden chairs, six on each side of your aisle, so unless you ask otherwise, a total of 12 in a row. When considering which chairs to decorate, we think it’s nice to decorate every aisle end and the last row of chairs that face you as you walk down the aisle with aisle markers – small flower arrangements tied to the chairs or hung like Pomanders.
But to keep within your budget, you could decorate every other chair end.
We loved Gary and Donna’s wedding decor who suspended flowers (in mansion jars) on shepherd’s hooks. Or you could use Hurricane lanterns that can be dotted outdoors in the evening around Thorne Barn for a large wedding or placed on the outdoor tables in the Walled Courtyard if you are going for a smaller initiate wedding. And, of course, these would be perfect for a Twilight Wedding.
One idea we are yet to see but that would be perfect for an outdoor orchard wedding is not to mark your aisle grand entrance with classic Floral Pillars but instead source two cider barrels displaying two gorgeous orchard-inspired floral arrangements.
Oh, and don’t forget your Reserved Seating Signs for any Readers and VIP seats.
Twilight orchard weddings
Lanterns are a great way to add ambient lighting to the orchard for a Twilight wedding. You can hang lanterns from the apple trees (but we recommend faux candles during the summer). Your lanterns can be repurposed on your banqueting tables. Or buy some rustic metal shepherd’s hooks. String lights are also a popular choice for orchard-themed weddings. Temporary lights can be used to decorate the ceremony area or even wrapped around the apple trees, as long as you have a troop of people to help put them up and take them down and don’t forget plenty of batteries!
As you opt to marry in the great outdoors, why not embrace the beauty of the season in your flowers?
For spring weddings and why not include pretty pastels and blossoms?
Add pops of big, bold florals like peonies or traditional English sweet-smelling roses in summer. But do remember, if you are planning on growing your own flowers, nature is extremely unreliable and blossom times vary from year to year, so if you are planning on including your own meadow-grown wildflowers, if you fear they are going to ‘go over’ dry them at their best and create a bouquet and aisle ends that is a mix of fresh and dried or all dried.
In the autumn, to reflect the season add tiny crab apples and autumn fruit to your bouquet and aisle ends.
To be more sustainable, no matter what the season, incorporate seasonal flowers to keep your costs down and reflect the great outdoors. Go heavy on greenery, which can be incorporated into a gorgeous floral crown.
What if it rains?
No one likes to talk about it raining on your wedding day, but here on the Chapel House Estate, if the forecast suggests it is going to get wet, we have the perfect indoor contingency, the historic, gorgeous, refined and rustic indoor Kentish barn setting, the Old Malt Granary.
Your wedding reception
Whether you are planning a small intimate wedding in the Courtyard or a large wedding for 80+ in the modern Thorne Barn, your wedding reception is the perfect opportunity to bring your orchard-themed wedding to life.
There is no need to hire tables or chairs, as we have purchased gorgeous oak-farm tables and wooden oak cross-ask chairs to help create a rustic orchard vibe. Adorn the tables with foliage and fresh flowers, and add real candles throughout the space for a magical touch.
Use blossoming flowers and fruit to decorate the tables and space. Centrepieces can be created with floral arrangements, fruit-filled vases, or even mini-orchards.
When decorating, consider using flowers and silks to bring the outdoors in. Or use floral garlands draped the entire length of the banquet-style tables and top table chairs (having been used on your altar). Alternatively, use wreaths and bud vases on mass to create a high visual impact.
For your orchard-inspired wedding breakfast
As for the food, you could serve farm-to-table cuisine apple-inspired Menu. When sending out your wedding invite and your chosen menu, be sure to ask all of your guests about any dietary requirements.
Apples are one of the most popular fruits in the world and make the cutest place card holders. This versatile fruit can be added to many recipes into sweet, savoury, and hot and cold dishes. They can be baked into pies and crisps or cooked into sauces and compotes. There are many different types of apples available. Each type of apple has a different taste, texture, and nutritional value. Raw or cooked apples are perfect for any meal because they add sweetness, texture and flavour.
Here are some dishes we would love to share at a standout an orchard-inspired wedding menu.
We love a Chicken Waldorf Salad with refreshing fresh apple or Apple and Honey Goat Cheese.
For mains, why not include pork tenderloin as one of your three options with an apple cider reduction? The pork is tender and juicy, and the apple cider gives this dish a lovely sweetness.
Or roasted chicken glazed in on a mixture of balsamic vinegar, apple cider, and Dijon mustard. Serve the pork sliced and drizzled with the glaze, roasted potatoes, and a green salad.
How about a classic apple pie with ice cream on the side for dessert? The warm, flaky pastry and the sweet, tart filling are a perfect way to end a meal. However, if, like us, you love cheese, why not offer your guests some Kentish cheeses served with Chapel House Estate homemade apple chutney?
Orchard-inspired wedding cakes
Consider at least one apple layer for your wedding cake, or add apple cream filling between traditional Victorian sponge layers. Ask your cake designer to decorate your wedding cake in a rustic chic style with apples, fresh or sugar flowers, or herbs to take your guests back to the ceremony.
Don’t forget to set up some fun lawn games, such as giant Jenga or organise a tug of war or why not swoop out a Hook-A-Duck and instead of Apple Bobbing, since Covid, Hook-An-Apple, to encourage your guests to go back outside after your Wedding Breakfast.
Orchard-inspired signature cocktails
After the lawn games, why not create a signature cocktail inspired by apples? In a world full of complicated cocktails, sometimes you want something simple. And what could be more simple than an apple cocktail? Whether making a hard cider cocktail or a vodka apple drink, these will surely be a hit with your guests.
Apple cocktails are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. Here are three reasons why you should try one for yourself:
1. Apple cocktails are the perfect summer drink. They’re light, refreshing, and not too sweet
2. You can make apple cocktails with pretty much any liquor, so we can make them as strong or as weak as you like
3. Apple cocktails taste great; and every time someone has an apple cocktail, they will be transported back to your big day!
An alternative post-ceremony drink
Apple Cider Mimosa includes apple cider, orange juice, and champagne served in a flute glass.
For your cocktail hour
For something a little more substantial, try an Apple Cider Martini. This cocktail is made with apple cider, vodka, and triple sec.
Finally, choose an Apple Cider Margarita as one of your two signature cocktails to get into the orchard spirit. This cocktail is made with apple cider, tequila, triple sec, and lime juice, served in a chilled margarita glass and garnished with a lime wedge!
Whatever orchard-themed aspects you incorporate into your wedding will feel tranquil and romantic, quintessentially English, and perfect for a Kentish Ceremony.
An orchard-themed wedding is a delightful way to celebrate your love. The beauty of nature, the freshness of the fruits, and the bounty of the harvest all come together to create a truly magical day. Your guests will love the unique setting and the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of your labour.
“Where better to declare your love, surrounded by meadow, amongst the quintessential apple trees of a Kentish Orchard, at the charming sought-after jewel in the Thanet countryside, Chapel House Estate”
We hope you found this blog helpful. Love the team at Chapel House Estate; we can’t wait to share your gorgeous Orchard Wedding xxxxx
With thanks to
If you want more Orchard inspiration, we love Jane McMorland Hunter & Chris Kelly’s book Orchard. Growing and cooking fruit from your garden ISBN 978-1-911624-77-6 by Pavilion