Cliff Barns

Blog posts straight from the luxuriously quirky home-tel in beautiful Norfolk

Bloomin’ Beautiful

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Working in partnership, Carol Page of Bramble Flowers and Lucy Grant of Little Norfolk Flower, offer a snapshop of a unique quintessential English country garden for you on your wedding day.

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All their flowers are grown by talented flower farmer Carol Page at her English country garden in Congham, Norfolk and then styled by design florist Lucy Grant of Little Norfolk Flower thus offering a truly memorable and beautiful flowery backdrop for any wedding.   A wide variety of English country flowers and foliage cultivated during the English growing season from March to October are styled to meet bespoke requirements and individual budgets and include, amongst many others, beautiful and fragrant peony, larkspur, daisy, lavender and phlox.

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Whether a beautiful bouquet for bride and bridesmaids, tiny flowers for flower fairies, special boutonnières and corsages for groom and bridal party or stunning arrangements, arches, garlands, chuppahs and flower bombs for the church, venue or marquee, Little Norfolk Flower uses local country flowers grown here in Norfolk by Bramble Flowers to make every wedding flowers truly memorable.  Little Norfolk Flower will always work with clients to ensure specific flowery wishes are fulfilled whether it’s a botanical, vintage, country, woodland, boho or even Bollywood vibe!  Lucy is also a farmer’s wife in her spare time and will often include wheat, barley, linseed and even quinoa in her work to give a really rustic feel and of course the obligatory straw bale, old potato box or zinc milk churn is never far away!

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Carol says, ‘We are both so passionate about our Norfolk flowers and our work together and we will always go the extra mile for any of our clients to make sure everything is perfect for them on the day.  We are actually a rather eccentric pair! I’m usually to be found in the garden in my trusted wellies and fleece either planting, digging, weeding or cutting and Lucy is a familiar site on the local lanes, usually with her Little Norfolk Flower pinny, walking her beloved labradors while foraging for the ideal piece of bramble, hawthorn or blackthorn for the perfect table centrepiece’.

Carol and Lucy are also able to offer an original and fun hen night option for brides and their friends making stunning flowery creations of choice. A really memorable and fun way to spend time with special friends and a unique opportunity for great photos!

Why not check them out before the big day on http://www.brambleflowers.co.uk and http://www.littlenorfolkflower.co.uk, follow on insta and twitter or find on facebook

Insta @littlenorfolkflower @bramble.flowers

Twitter @Littlenorfflo @BrambleFlowers

 

 

 

 

 

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Barn weddings and boho chic is going to be even bigger in 2017….

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Rustic weddings dominated 2016 with flower crown head-dresses, long flowing dresses and home-made decorations all played a huge part.

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Flowing fabrics and intricate detail mix traditional wedding dress materials (such as lace) with intricate designs inspired by the East… 

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Blooms are pretty in pastel and are mixed with foliage that looks ‘foraged’: neat lines are bypassed in favour of a much more natural look.

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Elegant dresses like this work best with simple hair: head-dresses and flower crowns look great with hair that’s down or plaited.

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The Cabana room at Cliff Barns looks out onto the Spanish courtyard and comes with its very own antique roll bath… info@cliffbarns.com for more details on rates and availability.

Pics from http://www.deerpearlflowers.com/beautiful-bohemian-wedding-dresses/

 

Five wedding readings that will make you weep…

Wedding readings – like everything else with a wedding – are a very personal choice. Here are a few of our favourites that will even have the cake in tiers!

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From Captain Corelli’s Mandolin by Louis De Burners

“Love is a temporary madness. It erupts like an earthquake and then subsides. And when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have become so entwined together that it is inconceivable that you should ever part. Because this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal passion. That is just being in love which any of us can convince ourselves we are. Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is both an art and a fortunate accident. Your mother and I had it, we had roots that grew towards each other underground, and when all the pretty blossom had fallen from our branches we found that we were one tree and not two.”

The Cloths of Heaven by W.B Yeats

Had I the heaven’s embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light;
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

Sonnet 116 by William Shakespeare

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no; it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

Dance Me to the End of Love by Leonard Cohen 

Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic ’til I’m gathered safely in
Lift me like an olive branch and be my homeward dove
Dance me to the end of love

Oh, let me see your beauty when the witnesses are gone
Let me feel you moving like they do in Babylon
Show me slowly what I only know the limits of
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to the wedding now, dance me on and on
Dance me very tenderly and dance me very long
We’re both of us beneath our love, we’re both of us above
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to the children who are asking to be born
Dance me through the curtains that our kisses have outworn
Raise a tent of shelter now, though every thread is torn
Dance me to the end of love

Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic till I’m gathered safely in
Touch me with your naked hand or touch me with your glove
Dance me to the end of love

 

Love and Friendship by Emily Bronte

Love is like the wild rose-briar
Friendship like the holly tree
The holly is dark when the rose-briar blooms
But which will bloom most constantly?
The wild rose-briar is sweet in spring,
Its summer blossoms scent the air
Yet wait till winter comes again
And who will call the wild-briar fair?
Then, scorn the silly rose-wreath now
And deck with thee the holly’s sheen,
Then when December blights thy brow
He still may leave thy garland green.

How to write and deliver the best ‘best man’s speech’

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So you’ve been given the somewhat daunting task of being best man. While you’re over the moon to have been asked, there are two words keeping you awake at night: THE SPEECH… Follow our tips to ensure you write and deliver the best, best man speech on the big day.

Drink after, not before

One or two to steady the nerves is fine but nobody wants to hear a drunken rant. Alcohol may make you lose your inhibitions but sometimes nerves are a good thing – there will be plenty of time to drink after the speech is done and dusted.

Be original

Slideshows, instagram speeches or even a playlist are all novel ways of helping you deliver your speech. Just make sure that you’re au fait with technology or that you have someone helping you out so there aren’t any glitches on the day.

Say it with meaning

The etiquette says that the best man must say something nice about the couple and how good they are together. This is really the crux of the speech so say it with meaning, rather than glossing over it because you have to say it. Your memories of the happy couple and how they met are a good way to start.

Be humorous

Getting the balance right between humour and tactfulness can be really hard. Despite how it may seem, it’s not your big day so try and avoid cheap gags directed at the mother in law if you don’t want to be battered by the bride’s bouquet.

Don’t put it off

If you’re a procrastinator, then it’s even more important to give yourself enough time to write and practice your speech. There are many templates online which will give you the outline  Doing it the night before will not end well!

 

Become Queen of the Flower Crowns

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We loved hosting the flower crown party at Cliff Barns. With thanks to the  Swaffham and Fakenham florist, The Little Lending Co. and Tatum Reid for these great snaps.

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If you’re looking for a hen party activity that’s creative and really fun, flower crown workshops are the answer….

 

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Nice Day For A…..White Wedding!

 

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Here at Cliff Barns, unconventional is our middle name. You could say say that we like to do things a bit differently here and weddings are certainly no exception.

With over seven years experience, we work on the premise that no two weddings should ever be the same. We’ll make your wedding dreams a reality.

Not your average barn

Barn weddings have seen a huge rise in popularity over the last year or two. Cliff Barns, however, is not your average barn conversion. Think Texan ranche meets Spanish hacienda crossed with country house and you’ll be getting warmer….

Fully licensed

Whether you fancy a small, informal  do of around 20 guests or a bigger celebration, we can accommodate up to 100 guests. The reception room opens out onto The Spanish courtyard, and is licensed, so there’s no need to go through the massive upheaval of moving all of your guests, just when they’re starting to relax.

Beautiful photographs

You want your photos of the day to be a really special memento, Cliff Barns is the perfect backdrop for formal and informal photographs, inside and out.

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Secluded spot

You won’t have to share a venue or a bar with anyone – the venue is totally yours! Just 25 minutes from the beautiful North Norfolk coast and 2 hours from London, Cliff Barns is easy to get to and comes with ample parking space.

Marquees

With  four acres of land, we can arrange marquees easily and have a tried and tested supplier…If singing round the campfire with friends and guitars is more you’re scene, you’ve come to the right place…

Local links

There is room to stay (up to 18 guests) and we can arrange marquee hire, catering, flowers, photography, pampering as well as entertainment. Our knowledge of the area and our local links means that we’ll get you the best deals with local suppliers; we can arrange all of this for you to ensure that the planning process is stress-free.

Bridal suite

In our Ranche deluxe country house you’ll have great fun picking your room. Every room is brimming with personality. Recline in the  super king-sized bed (all 7 feet of it) of the Prairie room; discover the original David Hicks wallpaper and tree-trunk bed in the Hacienda before claiming the Cabana room, which comes complete with an antique roll-top bath as well as an ensuite bathroom and plenty of REN products to pamper yourselves with during your stay (so getting ready for the wedding is part of the fun).

The bunk rooms are child friendly: a fun bolthole for kiddies. Oh – and did we mention the hot tub?!

Dress up

The dressing up box is the perfect way of creating some hilarious photos  – as well as everlasting memories – later on.

But don’t just take our word for it. See what the press say….

Photos by Dottie photography

For a wedding that your guests remember for all the right reasons call or email us now to discuss your requirements….

Call us on:
0870 850 5468
or email us at:
info@cliffbarns.com

 

Norfolk’s finest afternoon teas….

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Henry James wrote ‘Under certain circumstances there are few hours in life more agreeable than the hour dedicated to the ceremony known as afternoon tea.’ In homage to James, we at Cliff Barns are celebrating afternoon tea week in Norfolk by dropping into the below establishments – perfect places to enjoy an afternoon tea in style….

Burnham Market The Hoste

The Green, Burnham Market, Norfolk PE31 8HD (01328 738 777; www.hostearms.co.uk).  Originally built in 1550, The Hoste Arms – located in the picturesque village of Burnham Market – (also nicknamed ‘Chelsea sur la mer’) is a lovely place to stop off, after a visit to Holkham beach, for a spot of afternoon tea. You’ll enjoy a three tiered cake stand of sandwiches, cakes and scones and blended teas in opulent surroundings. Add champagne to make the occasion extra special – it’s also the go-to place for celebrities visiting Nelson’s county, so take your dark shades with you to make sure you fit in…

The Bank House, King’s Lynn

King’s Staithe Square, King’s Lynn, Norfolk  PE30 1RD (01553 660492; http://www.thebankhouse.co.uk)

The perfect place to go and have a natter with the girls, The Bank House serves loose leaf tea and cakes a plenty from 2pm. Enjoy views of the Quayside and river. The Bank House building is steeped in history, a grade II Georgian building, formerly the Counting House. Expect all of the usual treats but also look out for special occasion afternoon teas like the Wimbledon tea party (including strawberries and an ice cold Pimms). With six varieties of leaf tea, and also offer a special “Tea of the Week”, you will be spoiled for choice.

Narborough Hall Gardens – the Perfect Spot

Narborough Hall, Narborough, Norfolk PE32 1TE (01760 338 827;www.narboroughhallgardens.com). The Perfect Spot really  lives up to its name. Work up an appetite by ambling round the idyllic gardens, then visit the tea shop for tea and cakes infused with petals and flavours from the gardens. Enjoy traditional afternoon tea for two on the terrace.

Byford’s, Holt

1-3 Shirehall Plain, Holt, Norfolk  NR25 6BG (01263 711400; http://www.byfords.org.uk)

The drive round the coast to Holt is a pretty one. And when you get to Byford’s, you won’t be disappointed. Inside this kooky café, b and b and wine bar, you will discover that the range of cakes on offer is impressive, so good in fact that you’ll have an excuse to visit twice. There’s afternoon tea, champagne tea and high tea all available; the latter including all the usuals but with some savoury treats including scotch egg, deep filled quiche and warm sausage roll.

 

 

Jam!

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We love weddings at Cliff Barns but we love corporate events too! That’s why we welcomed award-winning social media marketing and creative digital agency Jam to our ranch! From jumping straight into the hot tub to outdoor team-building exercises, champagne receptions in the grand dining room, then festival-inspired quirky sleeping arrangements, a rip roaring day was had by all…

You can check out the corporate events dedicated page of our website here, which shows you which companies have chosen to stay with us and the wide array of things they got up to whilst here!

Don’t forget, we’re at Brides The Show from Friday-Sunday this week! Please come and see us and our sister venue, Carrington House, on stand 24. Whether it’s to plan your glamorous getaway or discuss ideas for your bespoke wedding, or just to say hello, we look forward to meeting you there.

Want to know more? Just leave us a comment or email info@cliffbarns.com

 

Terrific Teepee

teepee greg getting to workteepeeteepee voilaA work in progress… check out Greg constructing the teepee and voila, the wonderful tent is complete! And just look at that sunshine! It’s most definitely wedding season at Cliff Barns.

We had blue skies all weekend adding beauty to the surrounding strawberry fields and huge lawns. When the evenings get chilly, step inside the glamorous teepee for that extra bit of shelter.

If this summery burst of warmth is making you want to run from the office immediately, contact us for last minute availability and rates. We hope to hear from you soon…

 

Congratulations Nic and Will

Possibly the prettiest Cliff Barns has ever looked? We hope you’re as blown away by these stunning images (and our totally amazing venue!) as much as we were!

All images from www.rocknrollbride.com (beautiful photography by We Not Me Collective)