Mad Hatter’s Tea Party & Pirate Wedding

Alice in Wonderland & Pirate Wedding (49)

Mandy and Dean met online and, after dating long distance, Dean proposed to Mandy at the top of Beeston Castle, where they’d had their first date. Their wedding theme was steampunk meets Alice in Wonderland with a bit of Mad Hatter and pirates thrown in. They were also inspired by the quote ‘We’re all mad here’ from Alice In Wonderland, which is also Mandy’s family motto!

The ceremony was a traditional Baptist ceremony officiated by one of Mandy’s childhood friends, and was one of her favourite parts of the day. “Marrying my best friend and soul mate was definitely my favourite part”, said Mandy, “as well as having everyone we love and cherish celebrate with us. It meant the world to both of us. The whole day was just perfect, full of smiles, love and laughter, oh and pirates!”

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“For our reception we decided to have a Mad Hatter’s tea party. The décor truly was an amazing family DIY project: everything was handmade. It was hard work but it really helped keep our costs down and produced incredible results. My mum made most of the decorations herself from scratch and came up with all the ideas, she’s so creative and talented it’s untrue! She made bunting out of playing cards and ribbon, our top hat post box and created the floral table decorations using large glasses we picked up in a bargain shop. We collected all the vintage tea cups with the help of family and friends scouring second hand shops and markets, then put them together with artificial flowers and added fans made from playing cards and pheasant feathers to match the buttonholes and my bouquet.”

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In total they pulled the whole wedding off for £2500 and the catering was their biggest expense, as they had 150 guests to feed and wanted to make sure that there was enough food and choices for everyone. “Our catering was done by our friend Sue Corccoran, she provided us with a homemade feast of hot pot, curry, sandwiches, meats, lots and lots of picky bits and yummy cakes. We decided to keep our food simple and informal, we just wanted everyone to relax and enjoy the day with plenty of choices. We didn’t have a seating plan either, everyone was just asked to choose a table and sit where they were comfortable.”

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In total they pulled the whole wedding off for £2500 and the catering was their biggest expense, as they had 150 guests to feed and wanted to make sure that there was enough food and choices for everyone. “Our catering was done by our friend Sue Corccoran, she provided us with a homemade feast of hot pot, curry, sandwiches, meats, lots and lots of picky bits and yummy cakes. We decided to keep our food simple and informal, we just wanted everyone to relax and enjoy the day with plenty of choices. We didn’t have a seating plan either, everyone was just asked to choose a table and sit where they were comfortable.”

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“In retrospect we should have started making the decorations earlier, we started too late and only made it by the skin of our teeth!” she laughed. “My poor mum was exhausted by the time the wedding day came. We could have definitely done with finishing sooner so we could have some time to relax and recuperate before the big day.”

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The couple dressed up again the next day to continue the celebrations. “One of the best parts was dressing up all over again the next day and going to the Pirate Festival at Liverpool’s Albert Dock. It was surreal walking through the city centre in our full wedding outfits, then mingling with all the pirates! We had photographs taken them and people were stopping us in the street to congratulate us and take selfies with us, it was an awesome experience. It was definitely worth doing as time flew so fast on the wedding day and we would never have had time to travel into the city centre. The Pirate Festival was definitely one of the best experiences of my life, I’ll never forget it.”

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“Our advice for future brides and grooms is, if you are planning a DIY wedding, get all the help you can and give yourself plenty of time to get things made and ready. Most importantly, make your day about you and your fiancé and enjoy every moment.”

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Supporting Cast

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