Fast track to romance

Love blossomed for Amey and Chris over shopping catalogues and curry

Amey Hodson and Chris Dawe met as students while working part-time for Argos during their holidays. “We were friends for about a year before realising there was something more between us. We both have a similar sense of humour and like being silly; we also bonded over our mutual love of curry,” laughs Amey. They were together for seven years before getting engaged. “We had a long-distance relationship while I was at university in Exeter. Once I graduated we moved in together but didn't feel any immediate rush to get married,” she adds.

Chris popped the question while they were on holiday with friends in Sri Lanka, after climbing to the top of Sigiriya Rock, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. “It was pouring with rain and we couldn't see a thing. We were all absolutely soaked but Chris took me to one side and the next thing I knew he was down on one knee with a beautiful diamond ring in his hand. It was very romantic and some of the other tourists started clapping and cheering. It was a complete surprise, he hadn't even told our friends, so there was lots of screaming and crying once I showed them the ring!”

They were married at Hampshire's Sopley Mill on 25th June, 2016 and chose a pastel palette of nude, blush pink and pale green tones for a romantic, timeless look.

Read on for Amey's account of their big day...

Fast track to romance: Image 1
We fell in love with Sopley Mill as soon as we saw it. We knew it was the one because the setting was beautiful and it offered us exclusive use providing the privacy we wanted.


Fast track to romance: Image 2aMy mum made floral fabric cushions and throws for the hay-bale seating and bunting for the bridge outside.

Fast track to romance: Image 2 I accessorised with a two-tier chapel-length veil with a lace and pearl scalloped trim and a Swarovski crystal and freshwater pearl headband.


Fast track to romance: Image 3
My bridesmaids wore strapless Dessy dresses in different colours to tie in with the pastel palette. It was a bit of a risk but it totally paid off and added an extra dimension to the photos.


Fast track to romance: Image 4aI absolutely love flowers and wanted them to be a real focal point of the day. We used peonies, sweet avalanche roses, bombastic spray roses, matricaria daisies and hydrangeas with eucalyptus foliage.

Fast track to romance: Image 4 We created our own curry paste for the favours and, as we were going on safari for our honeymoon, we decorated the lids with model animals and sprayed them gold. They doubled up as place names and we provided instructions on how to cook the dish with a hashtag for our guests to upload their curry photos after the wedding.


Fast track to romance: Image 5
Beautiful displays of pale pink hydrangeas in milk churns decorated the ceremony space.


Fast track to romance: Image 6aAs we got engaged in Sri Lanka, the tables were named after all the places we visited on our amazing trip.

Fast track to romance: Image 6 Large mason jar arrangements tied to the aisle chairs were reused for the centrepieces, surrounded by smaller bud vases and tea lights on chunky log slices.


Fast track to romance: Image 7
Our caterers Beales Gourmet were fantastic and we loved the canapés they provided for the drinks reception.


Fast track to romance: Image 8aWe had a map of Sri Lanka next to the table plan and the place names also included a photo of each location.

Fast track to romance: Image 8 Our talented friend Emma Cook made our three-tier wedding cake with layers of chocolate ganache, white chocolate and a Madeira sponge filled with jam and buttercream.


Fast track to romance: Image 9
The Tim Eyles Jazz Quartet played 1920's New Orleans numbers and looked brilliant in their pinstriped suits and boater hats.


Fast track to romance: Image 10aWe already knew the evening entertainment was amazing as Chris plays trumpet in the band. He performed a couple of numbers on the night and also sang two songs.

Fast track to romance: Image 10 The bespoke evening buffet included chicken tikka masala, chicken madras and a spicy vegetable curry all served with naan bread, chutneys and mini poppadums. It's safe to say our guests loved it.


Amey and Chris's contact book


Bride's dress
Sottero and Midgley

Bridesmaid dresses
All Aspects Wedding Services

Beales Gourmet

Jennifer Poynter Flowers

Groom and groomsmen's suits
Moss Bros

Hair and make-up
Fiona Lucy Clark

Hay bale seating and 'LOVE' lighting

Ice Cream Van
Big Chief Ices

Nick Rutter Photography

Post-ceremony music
Tim Eyles Jazz

Reception music
Swing Unlimited Big Band

Sopley Mill

Boxhead Media