Love at first fright

Vikki and Mat created a shabby chic look for their special day

Vikki and Mat were in the same form at school but it wasn't until years later that their paths crossed and their romance blossomed. “I fancied him when we were younger but he didn't have a clue who I was until we were about 20 years old,” says Vikki. It was during a night out with friends that they met again. “I had a boyfriend, so he couldn't make his move, but when that ended, it didn't take him long to sweep me off my feet,” she says. The duo opted for a scary film at the cinema for their first date. “It went really well but I was petrified and hid behind my hands for most of it,” she says.

A couple of years later, Mat surprised Vikki after a romantic meal out. “I knew something was happening but I didn't realise it'd be so romantic,” Vikki recalls. “Mat asked his mum to go to our flat whilst we were out to light candles. The floor was covered in rose petals and there was a huge bunch of flowers waiting for me. I turned to say thank you, and Mat was down on one knee, it was lovely,” she says. Their special day took over two years to plan. “I loved organising our wedding, it was a small affair with just 50 of our closest friends and family, which made it really intimate, it was perfect,” Vikki recalls.

Here, she tells us more about the big day…

Love at first fright: Image 1
Victoria Stallworthy, 26, married Mathew Baxter, 26, at Offley Place Country House Hotel, on 20th June, 2015.


Love at first fright: Image 2aI got my dress from a sale event run by Ian Rennie Hospice. I loved the colour and the lace detail and had the neckline altered into a sweetheart shape.

Love at first fright: Image 2 My vintage hair accessory was made from pearls and diamantes. It was really detailed on one side and then draped over my up do.


Love at first fright: Image 3
Mat's cousin, Jessica, and my close friend Penny wore knee length floral bridesmaid dresses; they were really happy with them.


Love at first fright: Image 4aMy bouquet was made from roses, peonies, freesias and forget-me-knots, for my something blue. I had photos of our grandparents, who are sadly no longer with us, tied to the ribbon on the stems, so they could be with us on the day.

Love at first fright: Image 4 I wanted to keep my make-up natural and simple, so I opted for a bit more coverage and wore false lashes.


Love at first fright: Image 5
Mat went with his mum to get his suit. He hates shopping, so it didn't take him long to find one. His brother, Daniel, and his friend Jack, wore the same suit but with a different colour tie.


Love at first fright: Image 6aEverything about my look came together perfectly. My hair and make-up lasted the whole day and night and my lashes were still on the next morning!

Love at first fright: Image 6 I loved the fact that our cat, Bernie, was able to make a small appearance on the day! It was a real talking point and gave everyone a little giggle.


Love at first fright: Image 7
We had a caricaturist who drew our guests on a large canvas. Some of the likenesses were amazing, and everyone saw the humour in it.


Love at first fright: Image 8aFor our centrepieces and along the top table, we had a selection of jam jars that contained a mixture of flowers. I wanted everyone to be able to smell the aroma around the venue.

Love at first fright: Image 8 "I organising our day. It was a small affair, which made it really intimate. It was perfect" – Vikki


Love at first fright: Image 9
I wanted to get married in a manor house with a conservatory, and Offley Place felt right straight away. It was warm and bright and suited our theme perfectly.


Vikki and Mat's contact book

Bride's accessories
Confetti Bridelwear of Tring (Headpiece)

Bride's outfit
Ian Rennie Hospice

Bridesmaids' dresses

Ceremony and reception venue
Offley Place Country House Hotel

Jed Pascoe (Caricaturist)

Wild Ivy

Groom's and groomsmen outfits
Marks and Spencer

Ellie Sanderson Boutique

Debbie Wallwork

Wedding cake
Queen of Herts Cakes

Wedding rings
Smooch Rings