Bride and groom standing in front of Lonkerfest sign at Colehayes Park wedding

A ‘Lonkerfest’ Festival Wedding at Colehayes Park

This festival wedding is totally awesome! Amy and Chris certainly know how to style a wedding and throw a party, and boy I wish I was there!

Everything about this wedding is pretty darn cool. To start with, Amy and Chris named their wedding ‘Lonkerfest’, which is a combination of their surnames with a festival twist. They even had their own logo designed, which they used on their wedding stationery.

This wedding is bold and flamboyant and features plastic flamingos, funky sunglasses, blow up cacti, pom poms, loads of balloons, personalised cake toppers and funny pictures of all their guests.

Bride and groom standing in front of Lonkerfest sign at Colehayes Park wedding

Amy’s fabulous tea length wedding dress was custom made from a second hand full length dress with train. This is just a small symbol of how much effort and customisation these guys put into their big day.

When you see the pictures of this amazing ‘Lonkerfest’ wedding, taken by Howelljones Photography, you will see by the huge grins that are on everyone’s faces just how much fun they all had. You guys rock!

Sweating About the Right Time

“We met through mutual friends in Perth, Australia. Chris was there backpacking from the UK and I grew up in Sydney. He met our mutual friends at a camp ground in Darwin, and when I went over to Perth to visit my friends (I lived in Sydney at the time) I met Chris at one of their parties. We did long distance between Perth and Sydney for seven months (no mean feat – it’s a five hour flight!) before we decided to move to London together. That was eight years ago.

“When Chris proposed we were away for a long weekend with close friends of ours. On the Sunday night the four of us were drinking champagne and playing the dice game, Yahtzee. Suddenly Chris threw the dice across the room to create a diversion. I went to pick them up, turned around and there he was standing with a ring in his hand! He’d had it all weekend, sweating about the right time to propose, when finally he couldn’t take the ring burning a hole in his pocket any longer!”

Bride having make-up done

Bride looking at wedding make-up in mirror

Groom tying shoelaces

Groom doing up tie

Flamingo cufflinks

Man holding buttonhole

Groom wearing sunglasses

Balloons

Outdoor wedding ceremony seating at Colehayes Park

Colehayes Park

“We chose Colehayes Park as our venue, and I can’t say enough good things about this place. They’re one of the only totally DIY wedding venues in the country – you can literally do whatever you want which is exactly what we wanted. We had zero restrictions from decorations to time we finished. They are so incredibly helpful, friendly, lovely and great to deal with.

“The house itself is absolutely stunning. Most of our wedding guests stayed with us, which was really important as we didn’t want our wedding to only last one day or to have to chuck everyone out at 11:30 – that’s just when the party is getting started! Everyone played games of twister and cricket – it was brilliant! The location is absolutely stunning; there’s even a lake! It could not have been more perfect.”
Bride approaching wedding ceremony at Colehayes Park

Groom looking down as he waits for bride

Mother walking bride down the aisle

Bride and groom exchanging vows

Wedding guests sitting outside for ceremony at Colehayes Park

Bride looking at groom during wedding ceremony

Mother watching as daughter gets married

Groom putting ring on bride's finger

Bride and groom kiss

Bride and groom walking back down aisle

Festival Wedding Theme

“We went for a bit of a festival wedding theme and called our wedding ‘Lonkerfest’ (my surname is Lonnen and his is Straker – together we’re Lonkers!). We were staying at Colehayes Park for a full week with loads of fun activities, dancing and partying throughout the week, and happened to be getting married in the middle of it.

“A friend designed a festival logo and our invites to look like festival tickets. We had lots of colour, pineapples and flamingos, as well as some dice for good measure as a nod to our engagement. We just wanted to have a fun, silly wedding, and didn’t want to take ourselves or the whole theme thing too seriously – if it looks good, do it! I think people can get so caught up in the decorations and making everything totally perfect that they can forget about the real meaning of the day – having the biggest party ever with every person in the world that you love in attendance.”

Pink flamingo decorations at Colehayes Park wedding

Bride and bridesmaid wearing sunglasses and holding bouquets in the air

Wedding canapés

Bride's blue wedding shoes with white lace detail

Pageboys

Wedding seating plan on chalkboard

Inflatable cactus

Bunting and pom poms around fireplace at Colehayes Park

Photos across fireplace

Photograph

Flowers in glass bottle

Loads of Colour

“As per our invitations we went for loads of colour with our wedding styling. From the multicoloured chairs and balloons for the ceremony, to the colourful bunting with pictures on it collated from the eight years we’ve been together. We collected bottles from local pubs to put our flowers in for the dining room tables and bar, which looked brilliant. We even had a flamboyance (the collective term!) of plastic flamingos stalking across the grounds!

“For our food we had canapés and an amazing hog roast – the food was absolutely top notch. We also had a big barbecue the day after the wedding with all our wedding guests.”

Colourful pom poms tie to candlesticks

Bunting over dresser

Picture on wall with bunting hanging from it

Festival wedding table styling

Hendricks and Tonic wedding table sign Frozen Margarita wedding table sign

Photograph as wedding place holder

Lonkerfest festival wedding logo

Cheese stack wedding cake

Personalised bride and groom cake topper

Cheese and grapes

Photograph of man in bowler hat

Second Hand Wedding Dress

“I bought my wedding dress from a seconds dealer who works from her converted loft. It was floor length with a huge train when I bought it, but I got a seamstress to chop the bottom off and make it tea length! I also bought the most fun feather shawl by Jenny Packham, which looked brilliant!”

Bride and groom walking in grounds of Colehayes Park

Bride and groom by lake at Colehayes Park

Bride and groom by bridge over lake at Colehayes Park

Bride holding bouquet

Wedding guests with Lonkerfest sign

Mother of the bride speech

Bride kissing groom on cheek

Bride and groom giving speech

Woman giving wedding speech

Best man speech

Groom smiling listening to speech

Best man showing line drawn on forearm

Wedding guests holding arms up

First Dance Rave

“We thought long and hard about our first dance song, thinking about the kind of music we usually dance together to. We didn’t want to have a soppy, emotional, slow song as we never dance to that kind of thing, so we thought about the kind of music we love. In the end we went with a dance track from the 90s called ‘Set You Free’ by NTrance. The lyrics are actually bang on in sentiment, and we ended up having a first dance rave with all our guests. It was a perfect tribute to the week of partying we’d had and set the tone for the rest of the night.

“We had an absolutely amazing wedding band called ‘TFI Britpop’. They play, as the name suggests, mostly Britpop classics, but they also have a brilliant repertoire of other stuff they can play. They did an absolutely amazing cover of Lady Gaga’s ‘Born this Way’ for us. Everyone loved them.”

Bride and groom first dance

First dance

TFI Britpop wedding band

Wedding guests dancing

Wedding band bass player

Bride dancing

So Much Fun

“Other than marrying the love of my life, the most lovely thing was all my different groups of family and friends coming together and seeing them all having so much fun together!

“All our suppliers were such warm, lovely people who genuinely cared about how our day went, which made a huge difference. Our photographer was a huge win. He took such incredible, beautiful pictures and everyone at the wedding loved him!

“Finally, don’t sweat the little stuff. No one will notice/care if things aren’t perfect – only you know what it’s actually supposed to look like.”

Wedding guest with face painted

Wedding band drummer

Bride dancing

Groom about to kiss bride wearing feather shrug

Wedding guests dancing to band

Wedding photo booth pictures

Photography: Warren Grime of Howelljones Photography

Wedding Venue: Colehayes Park, Devon

Wedding Dress: Dream Second Hand Wedding Dress

Bride’s Shoes: Walkin on Air Via Etsy

Feather Shrug: Jenny Peckham from Debenhams
Suits: Ted Baker

Bridesmaids: Made to Measure Dress Bought in Australia

Flowers: 2020 Flowers

Catering and Cheese Stack Cake: Astridges Catering

Entertainment: TFI Britpop

Stationery, Styling Details and Finishing Touches: DIY

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