Tag Archive | the vintage party company

David & Karen’s Rustic Wedding at Millbrook Estate

We were back at Millbrook estate celebrating an intimate wedding of 20 for David and Karen last week. They held their reception at the Retreat which is our most favourite places to dress as it’s a hidden gem near two lakes surrounded by trees and only round the corner from us. It’s a blank canvas with so many options. Our couple chose to have a barn dance on the grass for their guests and booked a local band and caller to ensure their feet weren’t all entangled.

Photos below are how we dressed the Retreat with ribbons, roses, netting and ivy. David and Karen also chose to have our vintage ladder and crates with our display items, and the Retreat was internally dressed with bunting, hearts and our jugs full of flowers. We added small jars with battery operated tealights and large hurricane lamps with candles for the evening.

If you would like us to take the pressure off you and style your wedding or event in Devon then please drop us an email with your ideas. We have lots of small and large props available.






How To Make Perfect Coffee Vintage Style

We love coffee at the Vintage Party Company and always supply freshly brewed filter coffee with our catering, however we have just found this fabulous footage on how to make the perfect coffee.  Depending on your age you may remember some of the implements the coffee is being brewed in, I certainly remember my mother having at least one that boiled on the cooker, (apparently she still has it.)



The Vintage Party Co.


Mykonos Blue Pantone Wedding Colour for Autumn Winter 2013 and 2014

The next colour on our Palette for this season is Mykonos Blue.  A bright blue the colour of the sea, very close to royal blue.  Here are some examples that we could find.

Alfred Angelo




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AmyOHandmade on Etsy

For more colours see our other pages:

Linden Green, Koi & Emerald

For more photos visit our Flickr page

Picnic at Millbrook Estate for Paul & Nicola

Congratulations once again to Paul and Nicola who married at Millbrook and chose one of our picnic hampers for the afternoon celebration meal  We don’t always get photos from picnics, but we asked Jim Wileman their photographer for a photo and he sent this beautiful one.

A very happy couple.

Millbrook Estate, Vintage Party Company, Jim Wileman

Here’s what they had to say in an email to us:
“Just wanted to thank you for our beautiful picnic hamper, after getting married me and Paul enjoyed all your beautiful homemade cakes and strawberries with a bottle of champagne. We struggled to finish it as there was so much but everything was so tasty and such good quality we enjoyed the challenge! Thanks so much Nic and Paul”


For more information about wedding day or making memory photos of your event if you are coming to North Devon please visit Jim’s Website or Blog

For one of our hampers stuffed with Devon goodies, contact us via the link at the top of the page!


Mad Hatter’s Tea Party at Millbrook Estate

We were recently asked to cater for a Mad Hatters Tea Party, however this was an adults party as the only children attending were under a year old!  So the emphasis was on surprise,  alcohol, and the guests having no idea what they were walking into!

A face painter was hired and she produced some stunning faces for the guest who had been asked to come in fancy dress.  The barn was decorated in a rustic style with a long table, and lots of straw.  Had it not been raining all day we would have used the spare bales outside to sit on, but it hammered it down in true North Devon style.  We added a mixture of our bunting and the side ropes had already added to the barn, which gave it a totally different look to that of weddings.

Our brief for the catering was as “bizarre as possible!”  So we spent 3 days creating coloured breads, coloured sandwich fillings, coloured anything, and other surprises; even though everything was completely edible and tasted lovely the guests had to think twice before they cut into a cake, bit a sandwich or ate a slice of quiche – just in case!  The table was packed with food, fruits an cake.  We used many different shapes, styles and sizes of teapots filled with a vodka cocktail that was also coloured in each teapot and served vodka jellies.

The event was fabulous and with some great music by Caro Edwards the adults had an amazing, if not very slightly drunk, time.

Below are a handful of the images.

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Thank you to Bob, Kate and Iszi for asking us to look after them at their special party.  It was a lovely day!

If you would like one of our Very, Very, Very Mad Parties then contact us for a quote on how we can totally phase your guests brains – because we are now very good at it!

Country Style Vintage Afternoon Tea Wedding at Millbrook

The first weekend of June we were catering at the fabulous Millbrook Estate for Yvette & John’s wedding.  Yvette had chosen a unique rustic country vintage look which complimented the Retreat beautifully.  She chose an afternoon cream tea for her guest with our handmade lemonade and we put the drinks in jam jars with paper straws to compliment the flowers in jars dotted around the Retreat and hanging from the trees, along with plenty of sandwiches and of course scones, with jam and clotted cream.

Decorations for the Retreat were provided by Virginia’s Vintage hire, who brought along some lovely old frames to hang inside the Retreat and Yvette supplied personal photos to be placed inside them.  There were also some great shabby painted old chairs outside with pretty ribbons in Yvette’s colours tied to them, which blew in the wind. Luckily it was sunny for the guests could sit outside and witness the ceremony taking place just inside the Retreat entrance.  Flowers arrangements were created by Four Leaf Clover Flowers in old wooden wine boxes on stands.  A small selection of cakes were supplied by Lucy Cupcakes and to add to the vintage theme was Popcycle Icecreams serving up delicious local icecream.

Once the ceremony was over out came our canapes and champagne, and whilst photos were being taken, ducks raced and alpacas fed Ginny and Greg returned to setup the tables outside whilst we set up the buffet style afternoon tea out of the sun and wind.  The wedding party returned and had their afternoon tea listening to 1930 and 40s songs over the PA and after they played with the vintage games and croquet down by the lake.  It was a lovely day at Millbrook and we were so pleased to be part of Yvette and John’s celebrations and to work with Ginny at Virginia’s vintage hire to create a wonderful day.

Then two days later we received the following email:

“Just wanted to say a huge thanks for Saturday, it was absolutely out if this world and we and the guests thoroughly enjoyed it.  It was just so unique and so special. Yvette & John”

It was such a special day.

Photos below:

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Suppliers were:
The Vintage Party Co.
Virginia’s Vintage Hire
Four Leaf Clover flowers
Jim Wileman – Photographer
Popcycle Icecreams
Millbrook Estate
Lucy Cupcakes

Hire or Buy Vintage China

Hiring Vintage China by The Vintage Party Company

Whether you choose a theme, a year, or just an eclectic mix of different eras, a vintage wedding is great fun for everyone. We are often asked by our clients the difference between hiring vintage china and purchasing it themselves.

Our advice is as follows:

Although purchasing vintage crockery can be exciting, you are likely to pay between £3 and £5 for a trio (cup, saucer, plate) and depending on where you are buying from there could be additional postage on top to consider, but hiring the equivalent could be as little as £1.50.  Even a three-tier cake plate can cost you £20 and you may need 10 of these depending on the size of your guest list. You will pay a fraction of this price from a hire company. If you are thinking of buying via the internet, however, there are some criteria you need to be aware of:

  • not all items are as perfect as they seem in the photo. Even though a seller’s description may say, “excellent undamaged, no chips or cracks, but some wear to pattern or gilding,” this may not always be the truth. We have purchased items via the internet and some have been disposed of as the wear and tear had literally ‘worn and gone’ – some sellers will refund, but you are going to have to pay for the items to be returned and, as is nearly always the case, YOU end up out of pocket starting again.   Also there are hidden flaws, cracks in teapots which were not evident until they contained hot tea!
  • you could end up in a bidding war too, if you set your heart on a tea service and it goes up and up and up you could blow a quarter of your budget in seconds – do you know when to stop bidding?
  • if any item is damaged in the post or in fact smashed you cannot claim against either the seller or the Royal Mail. The Royal Mail Do NOT under any circumstances insure or refund for fragile items being damaged in the post; neither do couriers.
  • once you have purchased, stored and used them on your big day you then have to decide what to do with them, and here is my biggest word of warning – YOU WON’T MAKE YOUR MONEY BACK! Especially if you got into a bidding war and paid well over the odds. If you are happy to loose money, worry about breakages in the post, possibly having to refund a buyer if they demand it via paypal/eBay then go ahead and buy them, but if you want to save money and not have any worries at all – hire!

Here is a break down on price comparison. These figures do not include cake stands or any other additional extras.

To Buy:
Six place set of Teacup, Saucer and Plate £18.00 (P&P approximately £8.00 to add on)
Teapot – £24.00 (P&P usually £6 to add on)
Sugar bow and milk jug – £6.00 (P&P usually £4.99 to add on)
Sub Total: £48.00
P&P = £18.99
Total = £66.99
Divided by 6 people – average of £11.16 per person
timmes by average wedding of 150 = £1,674
Possibly sell for 1/2 of the price after the wedding
Also has to be all washed up by someone in your family the day after!
An awful lot of hassle for everyone concerned!

To Hire:
Six place setting of cups, saucers, plates =  £9.00
Teapot = £5.00
Sugar bowl and milk jug = £2.40
Delivery, Collection & Washup = £20 or could even be free.
Divided by 6 people = average of £6.06
Times by average of 150wedding guests = £909.00
No hassle at all

Hiring from a company also means your items are delivered the day before, collected a day after and usually for a small fee (often included) they are washed by the hire company after collection. This means you don’t have to worry about finding someone with steady hands to do it, (hotels won’t, it’s not their responsibility.) Vintage crockery is very fragile and most hire companies will charge you “damage deposit“, this is refundable in full if ALL items are returned undamaged and in the packaging they were supplied in. If they aren’t the cost of replacing each item is taken from the insurance fee and what ever is left is returned to you after the wedding – in some cases this could be the cost of a teapot at £20, two cake plates at £20 each – you will be paying the replacement price and not the hire price – let the hire company wash up for you as most breakages occur during washing up.

Additional advice about styling. The majority of vintage party companies offer a Styling Service, this means they can advise on how to set the scene of your wedding or party and will work with a wedding planner if you are using their services. If you are using a wedding planner ask if they can recommend a local company. Some hire companies will offer different services within “styling” so it’s best to read through their website or brochure to see what they have to offer you and how much they charge for this additional service.

Hire companies may also have additional vintage props, such as napkins, tablecloths, bunting, vases, candles sticks, and have contacts for entertainment such as singers and dancers.

At first it can appear an unlikely advantage in hiring vintage crockery, especially if you are on a budget, but in the long run it probably is – especially if you book a year in advance and ask if you can pay by  monthly instalments.

It doesn’t matter what the size of your wedding party, or whether it’s your first, second or third marriage hire your crockery from a vintage hire company and have the wedding that will be remembered by everyone!

© thevintagepartycompany.com

Vintage China Hire in Devon

Bespoke Wedding at Millbrook Cottages

We recently became one of Millbrook Cottages‘ preferred suppliers and have already had the opportunity to cater for our first couple on their wedding day.  We locally source everything where possible, and hand-bake on the day of each wedding.

Mr & Mrs Thurston asked for an Afternoon Tea with Devon Cream Tea in the Summer House at Millbrook just after their wedding ceremony.  Mr Thurston loves vinyl records so his wife-to-be secretly hired our 1930s fully working gramophone and shellac records for them to have playing in the background.

Below is a lovely note she sent to us:

“We cannot recommend the vintage party company highly enough! Our wedding afternoon tea was simply fabulous! 
From the delicious sandwiches, through to the divine scones, the food was scrumptious! The attention to detail by Carolyn was superb, and I definitely recommend the gramophone and records, it was a perfect finishing touch!
Thank you Carolyn for making our special day even more special!”

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If you have your wedding booked at Millbrook Cottages we can supply Afternoon Cream Teas or picnics for 2 to 30 guests, with china and decorations.  Our service is bespoke and designed to suit you and your guests.   So please contact us HERE by email if you would like a chat about how we can make your day even more special.

The Vintage Party Company

1930s Bride – The Wedding Bouquet and Flowers

Although there is no hard and fast rule about wedding flowers it is usual for the bridegroom to provide the bouquets for the bridesmaids, whilst the bride’s parents see to flowers for the church and reception.  The bridegroom, of course, sends the bride her bouquet, but he consult her as to her choice.

In deciding on what flowers to have one is necessarily somewhat guided by the deason of the years and the flowers available.  However, with more or less unlimited means it is possible to have some lovely and original combinations at practically any time or season.  Here is one suggestion for an outstandingly distinctive choice of bouquets.

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There are the bridesmaid’s bouquets arranged in the form of old fashioned clusters.  The centre would consist of yellow roses encircled with violets. Around this would come a rin of salmon-hued sweet peas, with an outer edge of lillies of the valley.  With the previous tones of yellow, salmon pink and violet, the bridesmaids’ frocks could be chosen from among these colours.  The bride’s bouquet, harmonising with these, could of of white roses with a few creamy pink or golden roses interspersed.