The Venue

Back when I was at university, about a month away from moving 300 miles away to Brighton to live with a boy, I started doing some research about the place that would soon be my home.

I would know no one other than the boy I’d met less than 15 times, and I thought I should probably do some volunteer work to find new friends. I didn’t end up doing volunteer work in the end, but whilst browsing the web that night I came across an art gallery.

This gallery was in the heart of the city, and the building was a church that had been gutted. It blew me away. There were pictures on their website of the space decorated for wedding receptions, and I spent the entire evening looking at them admiringly. I think it was this moment when I saw this place for the first time that I told myself “I will have my wedding there”.

I was drawn to this building like no other. When I first moved to Brighton I went to look at it, and I would continue to go and see the art exhibitions even if I wasn’t bothered by them. Each time I would step into that space and look around in awe. This was it. This had to be it. My imagination ran wild—just look at this space!


Image via Fabrica Gallery / Photo by Philip Carr

We had been engaged less than a day when I suggested we go look at it, and I already knew what my decision would be before I had even arrived. Luckily Jack loved it too. He said it was obvious that no other place would suit us better, and he agreed that we’d never top this.

We just aren’t Country Manor people. We wanted a venue in the centre of the city we loved and a place that was important to us. I needed a blank canvas. Though sure enough my parents weren’t exactly thrilled that we decided on the first place we’d seen—especially as nothing came included. We would have to outsource everything. I understood that it must have been hard for them not being here with us, seeing it in person, but it was hard to get across to them the “when you know, you know” feeling we had about this place. They suggested we go look at a venue on the seafront, but when we did it only further cemented how we felt about Fabrica. Nothing would ever compare.

Then I struck gold on a Google image search. There was a picture which displayed the potential in this space, and the picture made my mother very pleased. Oh hello there, beautiful, beautiful venue! It’s so nice to see you all dressed up!



Both images via Theme Works Weddings

What do you think?! Did you book the first venue you saw, or were you actually sensible and have a few options lined up?


Mrs. Jackrabbit

Brighton, UK
Wedding Date:
September 2013
Making Decisions Is Awesome
Gallery of the Day
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  1. Member
    blonde17jess 1290 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:54 am

    Oh my goodness, that’s adorable all done up! We also chose 2 of the first 3 places we visited. I did a lot of online research first, though, so I had strong feelings when we were going to look. Price ended up being as much a factor as anything, and deterred us from having the ceremony and reception in one space. I agree with the “when you know, you know” feeling!

  2. Member
    MissSpark 180 posts, Blushing bee @ 7:55 am

    First of all, WOW! That space is beautiful. I love, love, love unique venues. And I’ve got a soft spot for re-purposed spaces, my mom lives in a 1800’s adobe church. I can’t wait to see how the space comes together for your big day!

    Our venue is a boutique hotel that was originally a hospital for railroad workers in the 1920’s. There are rumors that its haunted and blah, blah, blah. But I knew when they started renovating it that it was going to be beautiful. And long before we got engaged I knew that I wanted to get married there. When it finally came time to look at venues, my fiance was less than thrilled about the appointment. As soon as we stepped inside tho, we both knew!

  3. mstreasure Member
    mstreasure 1655 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:59 am

    Oh wow! That is stunning! We also booked the first venue we saw. Why keep looking when you know it’s perfect?

  4. Member
    shortbread 290 posts, Helper bee @ 8:23 am

    This venue is amazing. I can’t wait to see how you make it your own. We did pick the first venue I saw and I only saw it in pictures. Luckily, my fiance had been there for a wedding and knew that it would be perfect for us. We signed a contract without me ever seeing it in person.

    Luckily, we made a trip to Scotland in November and I was able to see it for the first time. I cried the minute I walked through the door so I knew we had made the right decision.

    Here is our church:

    We now have less than four months until I can walk down that aisle.

  5. msjackrabbit Member
    msjackrabbit 1080 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:38 am

    @Blonde17Jess: nice! i really do think you can get a strong sense of a place with online research and it’s easy to do from the comfort of your computer :)

    @MissSpark: Thank you! Me too – we really did want something with a bit of an edge. There are plenty of gorgeous venues around here, but most of them were country manors or barns. Church-turned-art gallery has a bit more of a ring to it 😉 Ahhh your venue sounds amazing! Girls know best, ey?! :)

    @Mrs. Treasure: I completely agree!

    @Shortbread: Um… I literally got goosebumps when I saw that picture. Absolutely breathtaking. Aaaaand I have goosebumps just now writing about it! Be sure to let me know when you have photos :)

  6. Member
    lealorali 4827 posts, Honey bee @ 8:46 am

    Unbelievable space! The photos will be amazing.

    And I’m gonna ask a dumb question… how do you cook food there?

  7. msjackrabbit Member
    msjackrabbit 1080 posts, Bumble bee @ 8:48 am

    @lealorali: We have external caterers! :) There is a room at the back big enough for cookers etc, and our caterers are able to cook everything on site in that teeny tiny space. Luckily they’ve done weddings before at this place, so we’re confident they can handle it :)

  8. mslemur Member
    mslemur 616 posts, Busy bee @ 9:32 am

    This is lovely! To me it was the BEST feeling knowing I had the venue locked down. It’s kind of like, ok now I can really start planning.

    I totally want to make bunting like that for the mantle of the fireplace in my venue. That would look good with lights hanging though too!

  9. mspony Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 10:26 am

    What a beautiful space, no wonder you didn’t need to keep looking after seeing this!

  10. bluewhale Member
    bluewhale 638 posts, Busy bee @ 11:32 am

    !! It looks awesome. (And we booked the first venue we saw too – who cares.) :) I’m really excited to hear how you want to decorate the space.

  11. Member
    stephk527 987 posts, Busy bee @ 11:50 am

    Oh my gosh, I LOVE love love your venue! That bunting and the COLORS – ah what a transformation! :)

    We picked the very first place we visited. After exchanging emails with multiple venues, I had a good feeling about this one. About five minutes into the tour, it was a ‘this is it’ moment. It is just perfect for us and our guests. I’m so glad you and Jack experienced the same!

  12. hyena Member
    hyena 2537 posts, Sugar bee @ 12:23 pm

    It’s BEAUTIFUL! Oh I can’t wait to see your wedding here! We also picked the first venue we looked at. :)

  13. Member
    shaynapunim 654 posts, Busy bee @ 1:52 pm

    Such a beautiful venue!! I can’t wait to see what you do with it!!

  14. mstoadstool Member
    mstoadstool 2485 posts, Buzzing bee @ 3:37 pm

    Wow, the difference from one picture to another is remarcable, it is definitely an empty canvas and the espace is really beautiful already.

  15. Member
    DBS5127 220 posts, Helper bee @ 5:45 pm

    That is a beautiful and cool looking place!

    @Miss Lemur: Right now I’m really wanting to get my venue locked down so I can start planning! I feel like I can’t do anything else until I do that.

  16. Member
    tamrynj 107 posts, Blushing bee @ 9:41 pm

    That is a STUNNING venue 😀 I do believe you’re going to become my favourite blogger! We too went with the first venue we looked at… Sensibility be damned! 😉

  17. Guest Icon Guest
    Travis (Friday Wedding Photography), Guest @ 10:51 pm

    What an absolutely unexpectedly beautiful venue!
    When I got married, we had our reception in a park barn that was over 100 years old and lit the place up with at least a few x,xxx’s of white christmas lights and my (now wife) was huge into DIY tranformations. It’s truly amazing what you can do if you have the right imagination!
    Looking at that first photo I totally thought “what a beautiful ceremony site”, ok so this might be a little slanted as a photographer, but when I saw the finished room with all the greenery, vibrant colors, and cute tables with vintage chairs, I was just blown away.
    Like you said, “Oh hello there, beautiful, beautiful venue! It’s so nice to see you all dressed up!” – it’s seriously shocking to see the difference all of your hard work did to that room transformation!
    I can only with you had shared more photos of the finished room!

  18. Member
    scottie 88 posts, Worker bee @ 5:06 am

    We haven’t made appointments to view any venues yet, but there is only one place we want to go and see and we’re probably going to book it! I know my mum wants us to go and view other places to get a broader picture of “what’s out there” but I agree with you, when you know you know!

  19. Member
    chronicwhimsy 2581 posts, Sugar bee @ 8:07 am

    That venue is beautiful all spruced up! I remember when you first posted about it and it sounded lovely, so I’m so glad you shared some pictures!

  20. Member
    ChicagoDreamer 509 posts, Busy bee @ 7:24 pm

    I think the possibilities are endless! The colors and lighting options should be fabulous.

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