Our little Ettie was Christened in our local church when she was a little over 9 months old. We would have done it sooner but wanted to wait until it was warmer so anyone travelling down Cumbria could make a weekend of it in Brighton. Christmas passed and March looked like a good option for everyone and so we booked the church for the weekend before the Easter Bank Holiday. Unbeknownst to us at the time, this was actually Mothers Day so I had a lot of apologising to do to Mums who might have been looking forward to a nice meal out with the family. As it happened we were lucky with the weather and it turned out to be a beautifully sunny day so I think I was forgiven!
Amid the chaos of a house move and the start of another renovation project (the Christening took place just two weeks after we moved in), family thought we were mad trying to do everything all at once. But we knew the house was going to be such a massive project that there was never going to be a good time, and I wanted to try to fit the Christening in before Ettie was crawling (so she wouldn’t want to tootle off when I put her down) so March it was. As it happened Ettie learned to crawl the week before the Christening which wasn’t ideal, but the weather was nice, so you can’t have everything.
We had the service at our local church, which also happens to be at the foot of the South Downs and is ever so pretty. It has an open door policy meaning you can walk in whenever you need to. I used to go and sit in there when we found out Edie was poorly and it’s where Stu’s grandparents’s ashes are scattered so it’s an important little place for our family.
Her dress was a beautiful floor length Christening gown made by Adore Baby who are based in Scotland. They have a really great selection of vintage Christening dresses which are all made to order. I chose the Lucy Gown because it’s similar to my wedding dress and I was so pleased with how it turned out. Ettie looked amazing and I’m so happy she has a gown that we can cherish forever. To make the dress even more special, her initials and the date of the ceremony were embroidered into its hem. If we have another daughter in the future, I’ll get the date of her Christening added to the other side so that it becomes a real family heirloom.
I had the little coathanger made up by a lady on Etsy. It has her full name and the date of the service written onto the hanger in gold pen. I teamed the dress with a little pair of lace tights and some white Mary Jane shoes I found online. Then she wore a little lace headband from Evie Michelle and a stick with little streamers on that I found on Etsy. This was a bit of a last-minute addition, but a great one as it gave her something to play with in church. My outfit was a white wiggle dress from ASOS (similar here) which I loved because it had pockets.
We had the reception in the function room of the pub down the road. We were really lucky with this as they let us decorate it the nught before which took loads of pressure off us on the actual day. For decorations I decided on a pastel theme and sourced some paper pom poms and garlands from eBay. These were cheap as chips and really effective so I’m glad I didn’t splash out on anything too fancy. To make it all look a little nicer, I tied the pom poms together with a bit of pink ribbon and we hung them up around the room.
For flowers, I was going to get up and go to the local flower market the day before the Christening, but time ran away with me and I didn’t get chance. I still had all the little handmade vases we used for our wedding, so I bought a couple of bouquets of flowers from Tesco the day before (there was loads of choice because it was Mothers Day) and we separated them out into the vases to dot around the room. I finished each vase off with some pastel buttons and one of my favourite photo’s Ettie that I had printed out and stuck to the top of a paper straw. They looked so pretty and I was really pleased with how they turned out considering how easy they were to make.
On the little entrance stand by the front door, we had a picnic basket for cards and I made Ettie a little guest book that she wouldn’t be able to open until she was 18. I think everyone was a bit nervous about signing it at first, but once the drinks were flowing their apprehension eased and we have some funny messages for her when she’s older.
The Cake was a gift from Ettie’s Godmother who’s sister-in-law is a master cake maker. I added some more buttons to continue the pastel theme and we added the jars of sweets and little sweetie bags to keep all of the children happy. I also made little Activity Packs with colouring pages and puzzles to keep the children entertained and I dotted them around the room with some pens. Again they were really easy to make but hopefully bought the parents time for an extra drink or two in the sunshine.
Overall we had a wonderful day that was really laid back and stress free and I think the fact that we were able to decorate the room the night before had a huge part to play in that. If you are planning a Christening any time soon, I’d bear that in mind as getting ready in the morning with a baby was more chaotic than we planned.
If you are planning a christening then hopefully this will have given you some inspiration, but if you want more ideas I have a Pinterest board here: