We wanted to kick the year off by letting some of our 2018 brides take over the blog! Every few weeks, you’ll be updated with their wedding planning journey and how they’re getting on with the entire planning process, from the proposal story to the big day itself!

Annie and Dean get married at Calke Abbey this Autumn, so we thought their proposal story would be a lovely way to begin our Blogging Bride series. So without further ado, here is Annie’s first blog post:


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Annie & Dean: The Proposal

2018: A new job to start the year. The year I turn 33. The year I marry my soul mate.

When I was asked to become one of Honeysuckle & Castle’s Blogging Brides I was soooooo excited! I get to share all my excitements and challenges with you all whilst planning my big day! As I write this, there are 9 months, 2 weeks and 1 day to go I am in full wedding mode – so how did it all begin?

The first time I saw Dean I thought he was gorgeous; as a 1940s pin up model and singer, I had met him on the 40s circuit. When we got to know each other, we realised just how much we had in common. Our love of history, the outdoors, family and 80s music to name a few!

After living together in a medieval cottage on a large estate for 2 years, life was good. We enjoyed the countryside surroundings, often going for walks down the lane leading the manor house, entertaining friends and family, trips away, 40s events across the country, drinks in the local… you know the kind of thing. We had often spoke of weddings and babies etc. and I always thought I’d know when he was going to ask me.

I didn’t! I had no idea.

September 4th 2016… like any other autumn Sunday. I was cooking a roast whilst Dean was cleaning his rifle – did I mention we also enjoy target shooting? – and not unlike any other time, he coolly asked if I wanted to go for a walk? My reply seemed sooooo unromantic now: “Yes ok but it will have to be a quick one as I’ve just put the potatoes in…”

We walked just a short way to what became known as ‘our oak tree’ looking out over the valley.
I stood with my back to his chest, his arms round me, my head resting on his shoulder. “I love oak trees, got to be my favourite kind of tree,” he said.

“Mine too” I replied. “Did you know that Elizabeth – I was told – that she had become Queen under an oak tree?” I said, knowing he would forgive me for being such a Tudor geek. “Well what if I was to ask you to become my wife under an oak tree?” he replied.

Yep – I had set him up for the most perfect proposal!

As I turned to face him, he pulled out a ring box that he had hidden in his coat pocket, and of course I cried!

The ring was a Victorian copy of a rose gold filigree setting with the most beautiful blue aqua stone just hinting at its colour… simply stunning! The boy had done good! I was grinning from ear… and then suddenly remembered the potatoes!

That was the Sunday afternoon, and by Tuesday it was booked – Our big day…

20th October 2018: Calke Abbey.

(To be continued…)