When wedding photographer Michael of My Beautiful Bride told me that Craig and Melanie were one of his most adventurous couples yet, I took it with a pinch of salt. But then I saw their wedding day portraits where they got into a bath of water – fully clothed – with their dog! Not that’s something you don’t see everyday. If, like Melanie, you’re not bothered about keeping your wedding dress pristine, you totally need to do something like this. How fun!
“Our wedding was 1950s chic with a homemade slice of psychedelia”, began Craig. “We really wanted the whole party to feel relaxed and personal for both us and our guests, so we did as many things as possible to make this happen. This included the name badges we made, the games on the tables and in the gardens, the caterers, the music and the dress policy. Everything was always focused on fun and having a good time and not being too regimented.”
The weekend long wedding was held at Voewood, a unique arts and crafts house in Norfolk. “The venue was the most extravagant part of the wedding but it’s uniqueness meant that we didn’t need to dress it much”, Craig explained. “It really made the event as special as it was. We rented it from Friday through to Monday and as it’s licensed for weddings it meant we could have the ceremony there on the Saturday. The owner, Simon Finch, is a very interesting and wonderful man who restored Voewood to live in himself, and because of that the place oozes character and soul.”
“Having designed the invites ourselves we also decided to print them ourselves too”, the groom continued. “Mel sourced a Japanese Gocco printer and once it was shipped over we set ourselves up a mini printing factory. Gocco’s allow you to create a small printing screen from a photocopy or laser print of any image. This in turn allows you to screen print as many images as you can with the ink you have available. It has a really cool retro look and was perfect for our theme. A big tip here is that a little ink goes a long way!”
“We made individual name badges for our guests that featured some of their interests or a reference to something we’ve shared together. We cut up some colourful plastic cards as the badge base, added the guest’s name with necklace letter beads and items scoured from eBay and Etsy such as dolls house decorations, mini wine bottles and tiny sports equipment. Everyone loved them and they had the desired effect in encouraging people to interact with one another.”
The bride wore two dresses (well she needed something to get changed into after the bath photos!) Her beautiful blue gown was vintage and her evening dress was from Vivien of Holloway. “We both love to dress up and a 50s theme was just perfect as it allowed people the flexibility to wear a style that suited them. We had people in Hawaiian shirts, others in formal attire, some in bikinis and loads in evening dresses! Although we had the guiding themes for the daytime and evening, we also stressed that people could turn up in Converse and shorts if that’s what they wanted.”
“Our favourite thing about our wedding was the tiki bar opening!” Craig concluded. “Once we’d reached this stage it meant that all the official jobs were pretty much taken care of, we’d changed into our evening outfits, the band were set up and playing a bunch of surf rock tunes, people were dancing and it was time to really start the party.”