Jay and Rachael described their wedding as bookish and happy. They refused to get suckered in to following the standard wedding template and made sure the every detail was something that was special to them.
“The inspiration for our wedding was our life”, said the bride. “Our story is a bit different and we wanted that reflected in the day. We met 20 years ago, separated due to youthful emotion, pined for 14 years, reconnected and instantly fell back into insane love. I got cancer, recovered and fulfilled my dream to open a bookshop, hence the book theme of the wedding.”
“The venue, the rings, the ceremony, the music – everything was chosen because it meant something to us. We wanted it to be completely special and representative of who we are. Furness Abbey, where we got married, isn’t a wedding venue so we begged English Heritage to give us permission to use it!”
I’ve been meaning to write a definitive Las Vegas guide for ages – you guys are always asking me for recommendations of things to see and do! I’ve been there four times now and on each visit I find something new to entertain myself with.
I often hear people say they couldn’t stay in Vegas longer than a few days, or that one trip is enough, but I completely disagree! Sure, if you’re just there to drink, party and gamble you’ll probably be ready to go home after a long weekend, but if you want to broaden your horizons a bit more then one visit is barely enough time to scratch the surface. Vegas is so much more than blackjack tables and nightclubs (although a little of both is a hell of a lot of fun!)
Las Vegas is a city like no other, with a slot machine on every corner, gargantuan hotels, amazing shopping and some of the hottest weather you will ever experience! Seriously, during this recent trip (in July – we were clearly having a moment of madness when we booked it, who the hell goes to the desert in the summer?!) the temperatures soared to a scorching 48 degrees celsius (and it was still over 30 degrees at night!) It felt like god had left the oven on, thank goodness for the ample air conditioning!
What to pack
This is one question I get asked I lot! I like to think my Vegas wardrobe is pretty similar to my at home one… but with more sequins! Definitely bring comfortable shoes for the day time if you’re planning on walking up and down the strip, but for nights out pack your most OTT ensembles!
You see ALL SORTS in Vegas (some of them have to be seen to be believed) and its impossible to ever be overdressed. False eyelashes, glitter and your most extravagant shoes are a must. Plenty of swimwear too if you plan on lying by the pool or doing pool parties. I only bought one swimsuit on my last trip and I regretted it! Even lying poolside is a fashion moment opportunity.
Where to stay
Over my four visits I’ve stayed in five hotels – the Stratosphere, the Encore, the Cosmopolitan, the Flamingo and the Venetian. They all have their perks and downsides.
Oh have I got a beauty of a photo shoot to share with you today! Inspired by the fabulous Bloom Floral separates collection by Rowan Joy, I have a sneaking suspicion you’re going to love it just as much as I do.
“The idea for the shoot came about when dress designer extraordinaire Rowan Joy posted an image of her latest creation on her Instagram and I dropped EVERYTHING and told her that I MUST do a shoot with her!” said photographer Caro Weiss. “The concept was for all things botanical and nature inspired so flora, fauna, butterflies and more were all thrown in the mix and we roped in flowery wizard Di from Myrtle and Bracken who created an incredible vertical garden and natural and wild bouquets and Janet from Rene Walrus who went wild with real taxidermy butterflies combined with her incredible accessories.”
Rach and Tim’s DIY wedding took place on the bride’s family farm in New Zealand. It had a 1950s rockabilly theme. “It was important to us that we had a fun and relaxed atmosphere”, said Rach. “We learnt how to do a rockabilly dance as our first dance!”
“Our ceremony was funny and sweet. The celebrant asked us what we loved about each other and then put that in to her speech at the wedding. My nephew read He’s Not Perfect by Bob Marley.”
Rachel & Jamie by Camera Hannah (full wedding featured in issue 11, on sale September 1st!)
A quick Google search for ‘alternative bouquet ideas’ gives you a plethora of non-floral options of everything from brooches and buttons, paper roses, felt and even candy! There are so many ideas out there for brides that want something different for their bouquet other than flowers.
But what if you still want something unique, but you still like flowers? Well fret not, I am here to help!
Succulents are a great flower to use in a bouquet. They’re sturdy, look super cool and can even be re-potted and kept afterwards!
Rainbow roses are some of my favourites. Of course they’re not naturally these colours (they’re dyed) but they make for a completely spectacular bouquet which is perfect for a colour-loving bride to carry down the aisle.
Julie and Bryce’s San Francisco wedding took place at The Log Cabin in Presidio Park. “Tucked behind the Golden Gate Bridge in a giant city park called the Presidio resides a very little known (even to locals) log cabin in the woods”, explained Julie. “Here, we married, figuratively and literally, the idea of our big city love with our absolute happy place, which is Tahoe. The perfect blend of Truckee cabin and city skyline, it was the perfect crossroads of everything we love.”
“Being San Francisco natives (a very rare thing), it was very important that we kept things traditional to our roots while combining our biggest loves and inspirations: travel, design, cookies, family, and our dog. In the spirit of Tahoe, we created a s’more bar outside and a fireplace setting in front of the Log Cabin’s indoor fireplace. We also didn’t have any cake, we served milk and cookies instead!”