Happy Sunday gorgeous! I just wanted to pop by today and share some exciting news. I’ve been asked by Closer Magazine to be a regular columnist!
Once a month I’ll be writing something for them (and you!) which will help you with your (alternative) wedding planning. My first article is live on their website right now and its about one of my favourite (or should that be LEAST favourite?!) topics – the pressure on brides to lose weight for their weddings. Oh I do love the chance to rant about this one.
Graphic by Veronica Dearly for Rock n Roll Bride magazine, issue 6
I’m so excited that Closer have asked me to do this, what a dream job! If you enjoyed the article it would be awesome if you’d send them a tweet or comment on Instagram to let them know too.
Weddings like Suzy and Steven’s make my job so easy. They were married in November at a stables in Birmingham, Alabama. They were inspired by all the things that showed their personalities.
“Our wedding was a modern and well-conceived version of the rustic wedding traditions sans the wagon wheels and the cowboy boots”, said the bride. “We figured since we were already doing the field/stable combo and were dressing the bridal party with fall colours, that some reasonable departures into modern minimalist design with some stark whites and simple decorations would work well to give it a more stoic feel.”
“One of our favourite personalisations was that the wedding party was in charge of performing all the music at the ceremony. We picked of few of the groomsmen to play the songs on given instruments (banjo, ukulele, mandolin, violin and guitar). Steven is very musical and ALL of his friends are too. We also had another groomsmen and a bridesmaid singing over the top.”
“It also rained throughout our (outdoor!) ceremony but this ended up being one of the most enchanting and favourite details of the wedding”, said the groom. “It sets our day apart and makes it more intimate and beautiful to us.”
There’s something so extra special about tiny weddings and Hannah and Calum only invited very close friends and family to their December wedding. They were married at private house by Loch Lomond. They hired it for the full weekend and everyone stayed there with them.
“We wanted a relaxed weekend with friends and family with a wedding in the middle”, said the bride. “From the beginning we knew we wanted to do a lot of it ourselves with all of our guests pitching in. Everybody helped out, from baking the wedding cake, to creating the ceremony room, to arranging the flowers, to keeping everybody fed for the weekend. Our inspiration was that we just wanted to have lots of delicious food and spend the weekend with our favourite people.”
The bride wore a silvery grey dress (which she designed herself with the help of a dressmaker) and a green cloak that was over 100 years old and had belonged to her grandmother. “We had grand plans to whisk Hannah and Calum off and make the most of the stunning Loch Lomond scenery”, took over photographers Tino & Pip. “However that was scuppered somewhat by the raging storm! We did get a few cracking shots of them standing together braced against the wind and rain inches from the water’s edge. Hannah’s dress and cloak certainly looked dramatic against the landscape!”
This week, yet another news story about an amateur photographer ‘ruining’ a couple’s wedding photos hit the headlines. “Poor couple!” the comments read, “What a terrible woman this photographer is!” “She deserved to get sued!” The comment threads (including on the photographer’s business social media accounts, which have all now been deactivated) read like the modern day equivalent to the Salem witch hunts. They might as well have been chanting “BURN THE PHOTOGRAPHER!”
Now I’m not saying the photographer was wrongfully called out here. In this particular instance the photos that we made public were, for all intents and purposes, utterly terrible. There are also always two sides to any story so I’m not even going to get into the claims that she was 45 minutes late, only took 15 photos of the reception and spent more time in the photo booth than doing anything else. That’s really all superfluous to the point I want to make.
However, what is important is that when these types of stories come out, the recurring theme always seems to be that the couple hired a cheap, brand new or (as in this case) student photographer yet still expected their photographs to be of the same quality that a seasoned professional charging ten times more might deliver. There appears to be a complete lack of value placed on what a professional wedding photographer actually does. And believe me, its way more than having a fancy camera, lighting equipment and retouching software installed on their computer.
Cat and Andrew’s September wedding had no theme other than them wanting it to pay homage to the West Country, where they live. A lot of things were found cheaply or homemade. The bride wore a dress by La Redoute, the groom was in Topman and the bridesmaids, ASOS. The cake was made by the bride’s mum and they also arranged all the flowers themselves.
“While we have nothing against a good theme, I don’t think we consciously went for anything too specific”, said Cat. “Our love of the West Country definitely shone through, but we basically just took all our favourite things and put them together in a tumbledown barn! Wildflowers, candlelight, a massive full moon, camp fires, live music, locally sourced food and drink. Cider With Rosie meets bohemian gin palace? Midsummer Night’s Dream meets Wurzels gig?!”
“I love wild swimming and have been visiting Farleigh River Swimming Club, next door to our venue, since I was a kid”, she continued. ” The vague idea that a morning dip would be a good way to shake post-wedding hangovers led us to check out the neighbouring farm. It’s stunning setting and reputation for excellent cream teas sealed the deal. From that point on, the surroundings dictated the direction the wedding took. The barn was a ‘proper’ barn, with swallows in the rafters and piglets in the yard, so it was never going to be a white linen and fine china kind of a do.”
We still haven’t quite worked out our wedding theme!” bride Amy told me when I asked about the inspiration for their Australian wedding. “It was like a brass, pineapple, tropical deer hunter theme – haha!”
They were married in October at the Albert & Victoria Guesthouse in New South Wales. “We were inspired by the venue which is in the Blue Mountains. They are so lush, green and romantic that we wanted that that ethereal type feel to wedding but with touches of brass and skulls to make it feel like us. Plus antlers, palms and the pineapples!
“One of the most important things to this pair was the ceremony. “We agreed early on that what we wanted was a beautiful ceremony, followed up with a big, filthy party. The ceremony was so easygoing and our celebrant told us we had total freedom to write the ceremony we really wanted. We personalised our vows and one of Paul’s groomsmen did an amazing reading of a Bob Marley quote.”