Tag: honeymoon fund

Patchwork Couple: Jeremy & Catherine’s Intimate Wedding & African Adventure

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Jeremy and Catherine met at a party in 2013 and moved in together (on a narrow boat!) six months later. They’ve been living together, on a boat, ever since. They even showed up to their wedding on it. Jeremy told us all about their wedding day and the incredible adventure that followed.

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How did you get engaged?

On the boat! I made a curry and proposed after dinner. Then I took Catherine away to the Cotswolds to go hiking for the weekend to celebrate, before we shared the news with friends.

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What kind of wedding did you plan?

We wanted a really no frills affair – we were married in Bow Town Hall and the party was at Stour Space in Hackney Wick, where we pulled up in our boat! We just wanted a fun, relaxed party to celebrate with everyone.

The invitation said ‘wear whatever makes you happy’ so people came in all sorts; from fancy dress, to a top hat & tail, to shorts!

We were able to buy and supply all drinks and food at the venue. We did lots of online shopping, went beer tasting in Bermondsey Beer Mile and bought all the things we love – bread from E5 bakery, bagels from Brick Lane, pies from Broadway Market, chocolate from South Africa!

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What was your first dance?

Bare Necessities from the Jungle Book.

What was your favourite part of the day?

Just having all our family and best friends, from all over the world, in one room.

man-and-woman-dancing-in-front-of-friends

Why did you choose Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

We thought it was a super cool idea and we really didn’t want ‘things’, we have everything we need on our little boat and both love to travel, so thought this was far more fun than people buying us cake forks and whatnot.

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Instead we asked for various experiences that we hoped to do on our trip to Africa, where we planned on travelling for a few months. We asked for things like seeing the mountain gorillas and climbing Mount Kenya. We were so excited when we left to start our trip, and very grateful for everyone’s generosity.

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It was super easy to set up, the patchwork looked really awesome and it was so easy for friends and family to contribute – they all thought it was an awesome idea.

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

There is nothing as amazing as travelling and to spend a year seeing the world with your partner is so incredibly special. You’ll make memories that will last a lifetime and have so many stories to tell the grandkids!

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Thank you Jeremy & Catherine for sharing your Patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

P.s Listen to Jeremy & Catherine’s first dance song in our new Spotify playlist, made up of lots of Patchwork Couple’s first dances.

When Giving is All We Have

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A poem by Alberto Rios.

This poem was included in December’s Patchwork LOVES newsletter. Patchwork LOVES is a place for us to celebrate the things that make us happy to be human. Each month we share stories, music, ideas and inspiration around a new theme. This month was all about GIVING. Want to sign up to get the next instalment? Click subscribe in the top left here.

Patchwork Couple: Chris & Kirsty’s Scenic Scottish Wedding

wedding party throwing confetti over man and woman

Chris and Kirsty first met each other in 2009, when Kirsty responded to a room advert in London and moved into a flat share with Chris and his mate Phil. Kirsty says they were very much functional flatmates during they time living together – rarely speaking as they passed in the hallways. It wasn’t until a few years later – when they found themselves single and training for a triathlon – that the bonding experience of trudging through boggy lakes finally brought them together.

newlywed couple walking down steps and laughing

How did you get engaged?

It turns out Chris had asked my Dad for permission back in February whilst we were up in Scotland – they were sitting with Ben Nevis in the background, roaring fire and whisky in hand – so it was the perfect setting! I think my Dad was beginning to think he changed his mind as it was 3 months until he eventually popped the question! We got engaged in May 2016 in the New Forest. We’ve spent several weekends there in the past and always loved it. Chris chose a beautiful ring after a few months of secret plotting.

blue lake in scotland with treehouse in treewhite wedding dress hung on old wooden wardrobe

What kind of wedding did you plan?

We knew that we wanted to make a full weekend of our wedding celebrations, have somewhere the whole family could stay, which was informal, relaxed and had lots of personal touches.  Chris stumbled across the Lodge of Loch Goil whilst we were searching for venues online – despite the rainy, grey day when we visited we knew it would be perfect for us – we knew we wanted a Scottish wedding and a unique setting.

laughing-couple walking through doors in wedding clothes

As it turns out, we got married on one of the warmest days of the year in Scotland – we ended up changing out plans last minute, and got married outside, the guests needed their sunglasses on and I got burnt! Chris and the groom party all wore kilts too – which was particularly novel for them as they are all English!

We both loved the whole day from start to finish – we couldn’t have asked for it to go better. We had written most of the ceremony ourselves so it told the story of us and our friend wrote a beautiful speech from songs of our favourite bands. My mum made a beautiful cake and Chris’s parents made the table plan. We also loved the little personal touches like the gin bar, cake topper and smore station over the fire pit which went down a treat – and the band were also awesome so there was plenty dancing!

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What was your first dance?

We both already knew what our first dance would be – Birds of Prey by Editors – so that was really easy! We’re pretty aligned in terms of approach and what we like – which made the whole planning process fun and stress free.

Why did you choose Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

We chose Patchwork as we wanted a site where our guests could contribute to our honeymoon in South Africa. The best thing is really being able to personalise the content and build the patchwork yourselves. It also seemed really easy for our guests to use which was important to us. We had a number of people comment on how great the site was!

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Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

Yes definitely. We went to South Africa 5 months after we got married – everyone had been so generous and we knew we had a trip of a lifetime ahead of us. We had a great variety of experiences to enjoy including safari, wine tasting, kayaking and lots of delicious food. Our trip started off with safari which instantly immersed us in a completely different world – and over 4 game drives we saw all of the Big 5 which was amazing! Then we ventured to Camps Bay in Cape Town, took in amazing views from Table Mountain, enjoyed the beaches and incredible food. Then we moved to Franschhoek and the winelands. From there we then drove along the Garden Route, exploring different towns along the coast.

South Africa is a beautiful country, with hugely diverse landscapes, amazing experiences and gave us a great mixture of experience and relaxation time during our honeymoon!

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Thank you Kirsty & Chris for sharing your Patchwork story with us. And a big congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Patchwork Couple: Chris & Harriet’s Manchester Wedding and Californian Road Trip

manchester warehouse wedding

Harriet and Chris met six years ago in a chip shop at the end of a night out in Sheffield, where Chris was studying. They overheard each other’s Brummy accents, started chatting and hit it off instantly. They’ve since moved to Manchester together and married this summer in a humanist ceremony. We asked Harriet all about their wedding day and the road trip honeymoon that followed.

How did you get engaged?

We got engaged in New York, it was always very important for me to get married, but for Chris it was never really a big thing. When Chris bought me a holiday in New York for Christmas I honestly thought it was his way of buying himself more time! We’d been away for 4 days before he popped the question in the most beautiful candlelit bar in the East Village, with a ring made by one of my best friends, Naomi Jago – we decided not to tell anyone until we got home which meant we were in the most perfect love bubble – it was really lovely.

What kind of wedding did you plan?

We planned a city centre party, with our friends and family as the main focus – we really just wanted everyone to have the nicest of days, lots of booze, great food and dancing. We had a very personal humanist wedding ceremony in the People’s History Museum in Manchester, followed by a party in an old cotton mill in Ancoats – it was important for us to get married in the city we live in and both the venues were so laid back, so we really could do anything we wanted.

What was your first dance?

We had the Villagers cover of Elvis The Wonder of You – the words said everything that we felt about each other.

What advice would you give to other couples on their wedding day?

The one thing I’d say is to do whatever you want – weddings are great when they reflect you as a couple. We love having people round to our house for dinner so really wanted it to feel like a big dinner party. That’s how I ended up serving our guests my home made desserts and since the wedding so many of our guests have commented how nice that was – so just do whatever reflects you as a couple!

Why did you choose Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

Of all our wedding decisions Patchwork is up there as one of the best ones – for us it was a no brainer. We have lived together for 5 years and have recently renovated our first home, so we have everything we need. All we wanted were lots of memories that we would treasure forever, and with Patchwork our guests could help us have the BEST summer.

Everything about using Patchwork was incredibly easy – from making the Patchwork to the gift giving itself. It also made it very exciting as we planned our honeymoon so far in advance, so people could buy us very specific things.

We were originally worried about how the older members of our family would feel about us asking for money as well as the technology side of Patchwork – but they all loved it – they loved knowing what they were buying for us and loved how simple it was. Our friends loved it – a few of them are now planning on using it for their weddings next year.

What did you ask your wedding guests to contribute towards?

Our Patchwork funded our Californian road trip from San Francisco to LA. We picked this as although we have had many brilliant holidays before, we really wanted our honeymoon to be the dream holiday – and we would never have been able to fund a holiday like that on our own. We started in San Francisco for 5 days, then travelled down the Pacific Coast Highway stopping at Monterey, Santa Barbara and then we arrived in LA, stayed in Santa Monica and then finished off in West Hollywood.

Knowing that all of our friends and family had paid for us to do certain things made me so much more emotional about everything. We took pictures of ourselves cycling down Venice Beach and eating posh dinners and sent them to the friends that had bought us that gift. It was so lovely to thank everyone in that way.

Harriet and Chris’s top 5 tips for a Californian road trip: 

  1. Spend a day at a winery
  2. Walk the Golden Gate Bridge
  3. Head to Jon and Vinny’s in West Hollywood for pizza
  4. Go shopping in Santa Barbara
  5. Hire bikes and go for a picnic on Santa Monica Pier

Would you recommend your Californian road trip to other honeymooners?

Our trip was the perfect mix of busy city life and dreamy hotel relaxation – one day we were celebrating with a posh dinner and champagne after a day of sightseeing – the next we were having room service in a lovely comfy hotel after lying by the pool. Also – if you love wine it’s the most perfect trip for beautiful vineyards!

Babb Photo – www.babbphoto.com


 

Thank you Harriet & Chris for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a big congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

All wedding photography by the brilliant Babb Photo – www.babbphoto.com

P.s Listen to Harriet & Chris’s first dance song in our new Spotify playlist, made up of lots of Patchwork Couple’s first dances.

Patchwork Couple: Stace & Rosie’s Super Colourful Wedding Day

Stace and Rosie met twelve and a half years ago in secondary school when they both studied music for GCSE. Rosie had switched class to be with her friends – lucky she did, or the couple may never have met. It was fate! Since then they’ve been to University, lived in other countries and travelled the world together, and as Stace says, ‘it just works’. We asked Stace about their wedding day and what they decided to patchwork.

How did you and Rosie get engaged?

We went travelling a few years ago and by this point had been together around ten years, so I decided that it was finally the right time to propose. I had a bit of a hard time deciding where to do it (Peru, Brazil, Mexico etc.) but eventually settled on Machu Picchu. I waited until most of the crowds had gone at the end of the day and proposed on the edge of an Incan Terrace overlooking the main part of the site. I carried the ring around in my belt for 3 months!

When it came to the wedding day, what did you plan?

We wanted a wedding with a traditional structure but a relaxed, familiar and fun feel. The “theme” of the wedding was Latin America inspired by our engagement and travels. We used very vibrant colours for the flowers, decoration and ties. Our venue was actually a walled garden, as we both wanted an outdoor ceremony, and the garden was really great for our guests to enjoy into the evening on a warm summer’s day. The food was on sharing platters, because we wanted to try and avoid awkward moments on those tables where people had never met one another before.

What piece of advice would you give to other couples?

Be a team, take your time, don’t sweat the small stuff. Something will always go wrong but it will still be the best day of your life. Don’t worry too much about everyone else’s opinions – do what feels right for you.

What was your first dance?

Our first dance was “Sunday Morning” by Maroon 5. We chose it because it’s a song that we’ve both been listening to together for a long time. We actually got a lesson in to funk the dancing up a little, but unfortunately when it came down to it, Rosie’s dress was too big to do it!  

What was your favourite part of the day?

We wanted to make sure that our cockapoo, Leo, could be a part of our big day. It was great when Carla from Dogvision brought him in to mingle with everyone and have photos taken – he was very well-behaved. It’s as though he knew! Exchanging our vows – we kept our vows a secret from one another and it was worth the wait to hear each other’s promises. Walking out of the garden after the ceremony and coming back through the wrong door – it gave us a long walk all the way round the venue and some time to ourselves between the ceremony and the drinks reception. We came back in through the back doorway. With all the guests waiting to throw confetti – everyone was very confused, but it all worked out!

What made you choose Patchwork rather than a traditional gift list?

We chose Patchwork because we were already living together in a little cottage, and had everything that we need, but it seemed like a nice and personal way for people to contribute towards a shared present, that was an experience rather than anything material. It also meant that we could afford to have some extra luxuries while we were away, that we may not have been able to otherwise.

The best bit about Patchwork was how easy it was to set up and use. We really liked the visual aspect as well – like piecing together your holiday. Once it was complete, it was really nice to look at.

Where did you go on your honeymoon?

We planned a mini-moon to Andalucia in the south of Spain. We’d been to Andalucia in 2011 but had a bit of an accident with our hire car, which meant that we missed out Cordoba, one of the most important cities that we’d planned to visit. Despite this, we’d both really enjoyed our trip there and wanted to go back and finish it. This time we went to Malaga, Ronda, Cordoba and Cadíz. We drove again this time and thankfully everything went to plan!

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

We both really enjoyed our time away in Andalucia, partly because each place that we stayed was so different, but the drive times weren’t that long – it was the perfect balance between relaxing and seeing new places. It’s also a great area to combine beach with city sightseeing.

We started in Malaga – due to the flights, it made sense for us to stay there for the first night. We had our doubts about Malaga, because of its reputation, but the city is actually very charming and when we checked out, we walked up the old fort and castle that overlook the city and coastline, before heading to Cordoba in the afternoon.

We stayed at the most amazing little boutique posada in Cordoba (Patio del Posadero), inspired by the Moors. There were just 4 rooms, each with a different style – ours was styled around the colour blue (Laceur). The breakfast was handmade by the owner – Jose, every day and each day was slightly different and almost like a tasting menu with a shot of kefir to start, followed by a trio of desserts and then the traditional bread with the family’s very own olive oil, fresh tomato puree and sea salt.

Although it was really hot in Cordoba, it was great because we could split our day up, so we would go out in the morning and visit the sites, come back in the afternoon to our cool room, or hang out by the pool on the terrace and go back out in the evening when it had cooled down. Cordoba is a beautiful city, with so much to see and lots of great places to eat.

Ronda was next on the itinerary and had some amazing scenery – we stayed at the Mirador, which had a very impressive view over the valleys below.

We went to Jerez on our way to Cadiz, which is the home of sherry, if that’s your thing.  

Cadiz is a lovely old city – great for sunsets, seafood and long walks on the beach. We enjoyed the junior suite at Hotel Argantonio which even had his and hers showers!

It was really great to be able to think of each experience or dinner we had while we were away as a gift, and in a way, this made the joy of the gifts last longer.

What did your wedding guests think of your honeymoon fund?

They really liked that they could contribute towards something, and that it gave them an insight into what we might be visiting or doing whilst we were away. A lot of people commented on how sweet it was that they could buy our dog, Leo, a ball and bone, to keep him busy during our time away.


 

Thank you Stace & Rosie for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Wedding photography: jennifersmithphotography.co.uk

Brides the Show Competition

Hello and a big thank you to everyone we met at Brides the Show! And an extra thank you if you entered our competition to win £100 towards your wedding registry.

Big congratulations to Sarita Mavjee. Thank you for telling us the one thing you want. Your entry of ‘Sri Lanka & Maldives’ won our Brides the Show competition!

You have won £100 towards your patchwork. All you need to do to claim your prize is create your patchwork and get in touch!

National Wedding Show Competition

Thank you to everyone we met at the National Wedding Show who entered our competition to win £100 towards their wedding registry.

And a big congratulations to Serena Gannon. Thank you for telling us the one thing you want! Your entry of ‘Honeymoon in Tanzania, to climb Mount Kilimanjaro’ won our National Wedding Show competition.

You have won £100 towards your patchwork. All you need to do to claim your prize is create your patchwork and get in touch!

Patchwork Couple: Kasia & Sam’s Festival Wedding Weekend

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

Kasia and Sam met at six form college and had loads of mutual friends. It took them a couple of years but eventually they kissed – at the Paradise Bar in Deptford – on a group night out. They’ve been together ever since. And after what may be the world’s longest engagement (14 years!) they finally tied the knot this summer at a big garden party, made possible with lots of help from their lovely friends. We asked Kasia all about their ‘Patchworked’ wedding weekend and familymoon.

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

How did you and Sam get engaged?

We moved to Barcelona when we were 24 for 18 months. We lived in a beautiful old building in the top floor apartment.  There was an old wrought iron lift which was very small.  I always said how much I loved the lift, because you could see each floor and the staircase that wrapped around it as you went down.  It was very old fashioned and beautiful.  One evening on our way out to a Christmas party, Sam grabbed a bottle of Champagne and we got in the lift.  As it started to go down Sam announced he had something in his pocket, which made me laugh.  I didn’t know what he was talking about. He pulled out a ring box and proposed.  I said yes, we kissed and then arrived on the ground floor.  It was very romantic. Unfortunately we didn’t seal the deal until 14 years later.

patchwork wedding registry honeymoon fund

What kind of wedding did you decide to plan?

We planned an intimate ceremony with just our closest relatives at Chelsea Old Town Hall.  The following day we planned a big Garden Party in our family house in Essex.  It was a bit like a mini festival.  We had Bell Tents in the back field for our guests, a large marquee with flowers and hay bales and beautiful white table cloths and an amazing BBQ with a selection of salads.

Many of our friends and family helped to make our day special.  The party was held at Sam’s family’s house in Essex.  His Aunt Mary worked on making the garden look beautiful leading up to the day.  Sam was in charge of the music and food.  He asked individual friends if they would play and they all said yes. Sam created a DJ Rota and gave them each a list of tunes he wanted them to include in their sets.  It worked really well.

Our friend Philippa and her sister offered very early on to do the flowers.  They were amazing. She grew them from scratch created the most stunning displays.  I didn’t give a brief and was open to anything they wanted to do.  I just wanted them to be colourful and wild and they exceeded anything we could have asked or paid for.  They were so beautiful and special and made the place look incredible.  That was a very special gift from them.

Sam and our friends did the food.  He bought all the meat and fish from Billingsgate and Smithfield’s Market.  Then on the day our friends prepared the salads and we had a few friends do the BBQ.  That was one of the most important jobs and they were great, I think they had fun doing it.  At least they looked happy in the photographs!

I was in charge of the decorations and set up.  My best friends all helped to clean, decorate the Marquee with foliage, set the bar up, lay the tables, move the hay bales and all the other finishing touches.  That was a huge joint effort.  But it makes you realise that many hands make light(ish) work.

Finally we had asked our guests if they would like to bring cheese, or a bottle of booze or make a cake.  We were blown away with how many people did this.  We had a full table of cakes and later a full table of cheese.  It was incredible. We just had to make sure we had all the Prosecco, Wine and mixers.

Lastly our friends Laura and Rowan offered to take the photographs.  Rowan is an artist and Laura is a photographer.  Between them we have beautiful photographs capturing both days.  We were so fortunate to have so many good friends who just wanted to help make our day even more special.

It sounds like an incredible joint effort. Did you have a first dance? 

Our first dance was to Susan Cadogan, Congratulations.  It’s a beautiful Reggae song, which we love.  

What advice would you give to other couples on their wedding day?

Just go with the flow.  Don’t worry if certain details change or the timings of day move.  You have to remember no one else knows if something didn’t go quite right or the day is behind schedule. Guests just want to see you having fun and enjoying yourself and then they will.  Also remember to not be worried about asking your friends and family to help or contribute.  They will be happy to.

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What made you choose Patchwork for your gift registry?

We chose Patchwork because we thought it was a beautiful and tasteful way of asking our friends and family to contribute towards our Spanish Honeymoon. There’s no way we could have afforded to go away as a family without their help.  We created a patchwork of things and places we wanted to experience on our honeymoon, like dinner and drinks in a Flamenco Bar for example or a day at a Waterpark with the children or even a night in the villa.  All these things cost different amounts so people could give as little or as much as they wanted.  We also used our patchwork to ask our friends to contribute their time on our wedding day – the wonderful thing about Patchwork is that you can also have ‘do’ and ‘make’ patches, so people could contribute their time by saying they would make a cake or man the BBQ.

We were amazed how many of our friends and family contributed on Patchwork in the end.  It was a wonderful feeling being on the plane knowing everyone had helped us get there.  We were so tired, but so happy when we set off for Spain – we honestly felt so lucky to have enough money to enjoy ourselves.

What was your favourite thing about using Patchwork?

It is completely bespoke and it looks beautiful.

Would you recommend your trip to other honeymooners?

Our trip was very specific to us – we wanted a few days just the two of us and then we wanted to share the rest of our holiday with our children and family.  It was Sam’s 40th birthday while we were away so it was lovely to share the occasion with his mum and sister.  It was a real family affair and our villa was incredible, so everyone was happy.

 


 

Thank you Sam & Kasia for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Patchwork Couple: Steph & Jon’s Alternative Registry

alternative wedding registry

‘Reformed lawyer’ Steph and musician Jon knew they didn’t want a traditional wedding, or a traditional wedding list for that matter. They asked their friends and family to contribute towards their upcoming move to Catalonia, where they’re living totally ‘off the grid’. Luckily, we managed to get hold of Steph for long enough to ask her all about their wedding day and what came after.

How did you get engaged?  

On top of a hill fort in the west coast of Scotland, overlooking a Loch (where Jon’s family used to live). It was a hard slog to the top but worth it for the views and the proposal. We love the west coast!

alternative wedding registry

What kind of wedding did you plan?  

It was somewhere between a garden party, a village fete, and a festival, I guess. We had the ceremony in a garden, followed by tea and cake and games on the lawn, then we had cabaret, a dance class and ceilidh. We didn’t want any of the formality you often get at weddings – just for people to be able to relax and enjoy each other’s company (and our favourite things!)

What was your first dance?

We had one planned but I got glass in my foot the morning of the wedding so we couldn’t do it. We did a first song instead: Jackson by Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash.

alternative wedding registry

What was your favourite part of the day?  

The ceremony. We’d spent a lot of time working on it with our vicar, and some dear friends had written pieces for it. The cabaret was ace too!

Why did you choose Patchwork for your alternative wedding registry?  

We were looking for something that would fit with our next steps – we didn’t need a lot of traditional stuff, but we didn’t want to just ask people for money. Patchwork was a really nicely presented way of asking for useful things! And we loved the fact that people didn’t have to spend money – they could pledge to visit or write to us.

We called our patchwork our Catalonian adventure – we have just moved to an off grid hill farm in Catalonia, so needed help getting off the ground.  We asked friends to chip in for everything, from solar panels and storm kettles to sheep!

alternative wedding registryalternative wedding registry

How did you feel when you set off for your new house in Spain knowing everyone had chipped in?  

Well, calling it a house is a bit ambitious… We live in a yurt, actually! It’s great knowing that  people are invested in the adventure with us, and feel they’ve helped us in a really direct way.  Also, they did some incredible pun work on our gift page.

What was the best bit about using Patchwork?  

Ooh, tricky. Having so much control over the final thing – not just what we were asking for, but how we made the page look. I spent hours playing with layout. It almost made the chainsaw and beekeeper outfits feel beautiful!

Our friends and family loved it, no one had heard of Patchwork before so they had a lot of fun exploring the site. But also they liked being asked to contribute in different ways.

alternative wedding registry

And are you happy you’ve made your move?    

100 percent. It’s a total change of pace and lifestyle, but we wake up every morning to spectacular landscapes and fall asleep under stunning skies, and we are learning so much every day.


 

Thank you Steph & Jon for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Wedding photography by Joshua Wyborn Photographic

Patchwork Couple: Laura & Julian’s Trip to Japan

wedding day registry couple

We met Laura one day this summer when we heard a loud “Oh my god! It’s Patchwork!” outside our studio. It had come from Laura, who’d just realised she’d stumbled across the company she’d used for her honeymoon fund the year before. She was very surprised to find a real-life-brick-and-mortar space with actual humans working away at their desks inside it. We made her a cup of tea, offered her little girl a biscuit, and asked her all about how she’d used our website. It turns out Laura and Julian are design lovers through-and-through. That’s why they chose us. And why they chose to ask for contributions towards their honeymoon to the land of beautiful, simple design – Japan. This is their Patchwork story.

Why did you decide on Japan for your honeymoon?

Julian and I have always appreciated the simplicity of Japanese design and were especially keen to explore the different areas in Tokyo. Ideally during the infamous cherry blossom season. We both travel for work – beyond Europe to the US and China – and are lucky enough to have holidayed in various places worldwide too. But, at the time of booking, we had both not made it to Japan. This was our chance!

wedding registry patchwork

www.mattpenberthy.com

Why did you choose Patchwork for your honeymoon fund?

My husband stumbled upon it when we were planning our wedding. I say stumbled… Julian is a fastidious researcher (I’m the mildly impulsive one!) so spent hours trawling the internet for a decent alternative gift-list platform for us to use as our honeymoon piggy bank. We both work in design so Patchwork’s aesthetic really appealed, and the simplicity of setting it up while doing a million other stressful wedding related things pleased us both too.

wedding registry patchwork

www.mattpenberthy.com

What made you ask for contributions towards your honeymoon?

Having been together for 9 years, Julian and I had already amassed everything we needed for the house. As we were blowing all of our money on the wedding itself, however, we knew we wouldn’t have any leftover for a honeymoon, so decided to ask guests to contribute towards a trip of a lifetime to Japan. We felt a bit cheeky asking people to bring money to the wedding and thought of adding our bank details to the website we had made. Instead, thankfully, Julian discovered Patchwork – it meant we could better explain to guests what we intended to do with the money and gave them a chance to contribute to something physical, like a bullet train ride or a night in a traditional Ryokan.

patchwork wedding registry

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How did you go about planning your trip?

We booked everything ourselves, a short while after the wedding. We got married at the end of October so had a good few months to plan our Japanese adventure before the blossom season in April. It was good to have the funds from the Patchwork in-waiting, so we could dip into them as and when we found Airbnb accommodation and the best flights. The funds were only marginally reduced by our minimoon to the Lake District, an immediate post-wedding treat to escape all the madness, avoid returning to work and revel in the amazing day we had spent with all our favourite people. Oh and make a baby!

honeymoon fund japan

What did your wedding guests think about Patchwork?

We heard nothing but good things – people thought it was very novel! Obviously we received a few cheques from the older generations, and a couple of unexpected real life gifts (we especially appreciated the huge slab of Mast Brothers chocolate!). We have also experienced Patchwork from a wedding guest perspective and can say it felt very inclusive and much more personal to be able to choose what treats to buy the bride and groom.

How did you feel when you set off on your honeymoon knowing friends and family had helped fund it?

It was very special. We would never have saved up enough money to completely spoil ourselves the way we were able to with everyone’s help. We probably would have been too sensible to even book it at all! By the time the trip came about I was almost 6 months pregnant, so we clubbed together with our air miles and flew business class, stopping off in Hong Kong on the way there and back to break up the journey. We promised everyone a photo session on our return, to show people what they had contributed to. Mainly pictures of Julian finishing off all the Sake! That in itself is a reason to return to Japan when Hazel is older, to show her the sights that she missed, and so I can tuck into some Japanese beer and sushi.

 


 

Thank you Laura & Julian for sharing your patchwork story with us. And a huge congratulations from Team Patchwork!

If this has inspired you to make your own patchwork, just customise one of our readymade patchworks or create one from scratch.

Wedding photography by Matt Penberthy

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