Make Your Own Wedding Rings at Oldfield Forge Academy

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There is something so special about DIY weddings. Even if the final results aren’t as perfect as they might be if the couple had booked a professional, to me, DIY weddings are always way more amazing because of those extra personal touches.

Having a DIY wedding means you’re thinking about more than just that one day. The projects you do not only put your own stamp on your wedding, but they make this special occasion even more memorable. You’re putting a little piece of the two of you into everything you create. That’s priceless.

So you’re making your own décor, baking a cake, and picking and arranging the flowers… But what about the one thing you’ll wear forever, your wedding rings? Have you considered making those too?

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Based in the beautiful Herefordshire countryside, blacksmiths Nicky and Arron launched Oldfield Forge Academy in 2013. They now offer various courses, including one where couples can learn to make each other’s wedding rings! How would you like to escape the stresses of wedding planning and have a romantic trip away where you also get to design and make your very own rings?!

The best part is that the wedding rings package can be tailored to meet your own needs. This is not just a case of rocking up and making some rings, you can add on extra fun activities to your trip including ale tasting, river trips, picnics in the woods or evening dinner at one of the local pubs. They even offer luxury accommodation in a nearby cottage if you’d like to make a weekend of it!

The cost of a ring making course is just £174 per couple for a five hour lesson and two rings made of mild iron/ steel (which will be treated to be protected from rusting). The price also includes a bottle of bubbly to celebrate with when you’re done and a delicious lunch. Your experienced blacksmith teacher will guide you the whole way through from designing to forging, and will help you create your very own uniquely personal, one-of-a-kind rings. They will teach you a wide range of techniques and you can even etch your own message onto them if you like!

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Laid-Back London Wedding

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Blake and Ellen wanted their wedding to be as laid back as possible for their guests and themselves. They had their ceremony in a reconsecrated church and their reception at 06 St Chad’s Place in Kings Cross.

“The main idea for our wedding was to have it relaxed”, the bride explained. “We just wanted everyone to have a good time and for us not to be stressed out or worried about anything but still not lose some of the traditions. For example we had our ceremony in a church but as it was reconsecrated we could have drinks and nibbles when people arrived. It was a fun start and everyone was in a good mood right from the beginning.”

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“We also thought it would be fun, even though we were having a civil ceremony, to have some ‘hymns’, but instead of religious ones we had a couple of our favourite classic sing-alongs including Mandy by Barry Manilow and I love you baby by Frankie Valli. We didn’t know how it would go down with the congregation but everyone joined in and it was a particular highlight. it was such an unforgettable moment when everyone came together and it was the perfect start to the perfect day. It also put us both right at ease and settled our nerves and it really was the catalyst for everyone to get into the spirit and just have a great day.”

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Flower Beard Bridals with Harnaam Kaur

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Harnaam Kaur has polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which meant she started growing a beard from aged 11. Battling to remove her hair every day, and bullied at school, she started to self harm and considered suicide. Harnaam is now a body-confidence and anti-bullying activist and she fully embraces her unique look and hopes to encourage others to do the same. So when this bridal shoot using Harnaam as the model was submitted to me I nearly jumped out of my skin with excitement!

“I am a British born female living in Slough”, Harnaam told me. “I am a little different from other women. “I was diagnosed with polycystic ovaries from a really young age, around the time I hit puberty. PCOS is a condition in which there is an imbalance in hormones within the female body, this has led me to have more male hormones then female ones, and it is also the reason to why I have a beard. I used to have my face waxed 2 to 3 times a week, and on the days I couldn’t bare the pain I would simply shave.”

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“I had a great upbringing and a really happy family life but I was severely bullied all the way through school, starting from nursery right through to my late secondary school days. I even got beaten up a few times. I became very aggressively suicidal and I even resorted to self harm.”

“At the age of 16 I hit my biggest low. I had been suicidal all year due to immense bullying from school and people in society. I hid away and did not want to venture out into the public. My bedroom was my only safe haven. I was hugely depressed. I remember sitting on my bed and thinking about taking my own life. But instead, as I sat there, I started to counsel myself. I told myself ‘The energy you are putting into ending your life, put all that energy into turning your life around and doing something better’.”

“At that point I decided I wanted to be me. I decided to keep my beard and step forward against society’s expectations of what a woman should look like. Today I am not suicidal and I do not self harm. Today I am happy living as a young beautiful bearded woman. I have realised that this body is mine, I own it, I do not have any other body to live in so I may as well love it unconditionally.”

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North vs South, A London Pub Wedding

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With gay marriage becoming legal across the whole of The United States and London Pride taking place this past weekend, this has to be the perfect time to share Chris and Russ’ fun-filled London wedding! They were married in February at Islington Town Hall, followed by a meal at St John’s Tavern and an evening reception at The Star.

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“We met in a pub in Camden in 2008″, they told me. “Russ is a Londoner and Chris, a Hullensian. Russ said, ‘You can tell you’re not a Londoner, because you’re smiling.’ The next night we met up in St John’s Tavern in Archway. It is a fantastic pub that really looks after its customers. As the place of our first sober encounter, we have a deep personal connection with it, and it had to have a key role in our wedding.”

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Casual & Beautiful New Zealand Wedding

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Hayley and Marty were married at the historic Mcleod Bay Church in Whangarei Heads, New Zealand. It is the church of the early settlers of the small coastal area where Marty grew up.

“We are both creative people so this is really what influenced our wedding”, the bride began. “We wanted too execute our own ideas and make our wedding unique. Everything there was made by us, for us. This meant nothing was over the top or tacky. Nothing about it was traditional.”

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“All the décor was DIY”, she continued. “Living in Australia and flying home for the wedding meant we only had a week prior to organise and create everything. We had a clear plan of what we liked and this meant we wanted everything to be personal. We didn’t just want to have things you could buy in a store. That’s not what we are about and we wanted to have our wedding reflect that.”

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Win The Glitter Encrusted Wedding Shoes of Your Dreams with Agnes & Norman!

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Finding the perfect pair of shoes for your wedding day can, for some brides, be way more difficult that finding the dress! You want something comfortable and beautiful, and if they didn’t cost a million quid that would be lovely too.

Enter Agnes & Norman, sister company of the wildly popular Rachel Simpson Shoes. Wanting to make shoes inspired by the past, creative director Rachel designed each pair while taking her cues from a bygone era (in fact the company is named after her own grandparents!) The combination of this with up to date shapes and wearable heels results in a truly unique collection.

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I can lay testament to how comfortable they are too because I have three pairs myself (obsessed? moi?!) The heels are low meaning no pain at the end of the night, and the fit is generous.

Win a Pair of Agnes & Norman Shoes!

If you love these vintage styles (and glitter) just as much as I do then you are going to go completely crazy for today’s competition. Five lucky readers will win their choice of the following shoes – the only difficult part will be choosing which pair to have!

Pandora in Star Dust & Night Sky

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Maia in Teal & Rioja

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Portia in Sunset Gold & Night Sky

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