Carrie and Neil had a red and white wedding with rockabilly and polka dot touches! The day was held at Highbury Hall in Birmingham and was full of DIY décor. “We would like to think we were far more relaxed, friendly and laid-back than other wedding we have been to”, began the bride. “So many weddings we have been to seem so stiff and uptight as a whole. We wanted a fun party atmosphere with a live band playing lots rockabilly, plenty of food for people to stuff their faces, and encouraged dancing until your feet dropped off. The word ‘formal’ never entered our vocabulary.”
Carrie wore a custom dress from Honeypie Boutique, which she loved! “I never wanted my dress to be long. I went to a few bridal shops and never liked the look of anything on offer. I made the mistake of asking one shop owner if they had anything short or polka dot and I was greeted with a look as if I was a mad woman. Honeypie Boutique were a life saver. I actually got a polka dot dress that didn’t have to drag along the floor and annoy me all night!”
The wedding of Margot and Jared was held at Artwork Network, an art gallery in Denver. The ceremony was officiated by the groom’s younger brother, Kyle. But this wasn’t the only thing that made their wedding special, unique and personalised. “I think from the minute we started actually thinking about what the wedding would be like, we both just wanted it to be fun”, explained Margot. “A party for all of our closest friends and family. As unstuffy as possible. From there the details just fell into place. Food trucks were wayyy cheaper than traditional caterers, we both love pie, we both love whiskey, and we love throwing parties.”
“The two weeks before the wedding were an incredible blur”, she continued. “I lost my grandpa a week before the wedding, and while it was a time of loss, it was also an opportunity to get to spend time with my family. There were also a thousand things that were so last minute – decoration crafts I meant to do but didn’t have the time (plus the tutorial for them was crap), a friend ran out to get the garter and ring pillow last minute, I forgot a bracelet I was supposed to wear, the bartenders forgot champagne flutes so there was no champagne toast, blah. But at the end of the night, not any bit of that mattered.”
I’m not going to lie to you, I’ve cried too many tears over my weight. I had an eating disorder for ten years and although I was technically recovered by the time I came to walk down the aisle, it was still at the forefront of my mind when planning the wedding.
My thoughts of self-loathing reared their ugliest head when it came to choosing my dress of course. I was worried that I’d never find one that I felt good in. I was worried that I’d be uncomfortable all day. I was worried that I’d look back at my wedding photos and cry because I looked so enormous.
There seems to be two main schools of thought when it comes to body image, weight and weddings. There are those, like me now, that believe you should focus on being healthy and not stress yourself out by trying to lose weight before the wedding. Then there are others that go on a diet or sign up to some kind of sadistic bridal bootcamp torture as soon as that sparkler is slipped onto their finger.
Seeing a bride wearing my blog’s logo as a necklace (made by Red Bird Makes on Etsy) on her wedding day makes me VERY HAPPY indeed. How cool is that!? Andrea and Franz were married in Germany on New Year’s Eve. They’re both from Germany and so wanted to get married there, but they live in Australia now so they planned the whole thing from the other side of the world.
“Our wedding theme was ‘Love, Drinks and Rock n Roll!” began the bride. “We always knew that our wedding would be about having a big party with friends and family and not about following conventions, having long speeches and stupid games. So we decided to have exactly this: a big party with lots to drink and great music. Wanting to spend Christmas back home in Germany anyway, we decided to squeeze the ceremony in during our trip. We decided to have the party on New Year’s Eve as nobody really ever knows what to do on New Year’s anyway!”
Undeniably, one of the most (if not the most!) important parts of any wedding is the ceremony. But with wedding blogs, books and magazines mostly focusing on the pretty stuff (flowers! cakes! dresses!!) it is often the bit that leaves couples the most confused. So today I thought I would briefly cover a few of your options and help you to with some vow ideas if you plan to write your own. I’ve concentrated on English marriage laws in this post so be sure to check your own country’s requirements as they may vary.
Unfortunately, English marriage laws are some of the strictest in the world. Here, you can only be legally married in an approved location and the ceremony must be performed by an authorised celebrant (usually, but not always, a minister of religion) or by an authorised registrar. So your dreams of a beautiful beach or backyard ceremony being performed by your best friend who bought his marriage license on the internet would not be legally binding. Sad face.
But, you can still do it! You’ll just have to make sure you do the legal bit as well by popping to your local registry office to sign the papers. Most couples do this on the same day, but you could do it the day before or after and have another mini-celebration! Also, if you’re having a destination wedding make sure you check where you stand legally. Ceremonies that take place in another country are not always legally binding back home!
If you’re planning to write your own wedding ceremony, you’ll need to check with your local government to see if there are any legal requirements that must be included. Other than that what else happens is completely up to you, especially if you’re having a non-religious ceremony. If you are getting married in a religious setting the rules about what you can and can’t do are often a bit stricter. Just make sure you speak to your officiant if you want to do anything non-traditional.
When you chat to your celebrant before the day, they will most likely go through what you can expect from the ceremony. They’ll also describe the various aspects and explain their significance to you. They may also suggest that you do a rehearsal the day before so you’re all prepped and there are no unexpected surprises!
Whatever kind of ceremony you’re having it’s nice if it follows a basic structure. This way it will be easier for your guests to follow along. A wedding ceremony usually goes as follows:
Processional (the bit where you walk in)
A note about love/ marriage (often referred to as the “definition of marriage”)
The declaration of intent (the “I Do!” bit!)
Pronouncement (aka the kiss!)
The signing of the register
As far as simple and breathtaking weddings go, I think this family focused elopement in Big Sur, California wins everything. It was just Ulysses, Cyntia and their two gorgeous children, Phoenix and Galaxy in attendance. Their officiant, Colette Cucchia, was there to marry them overlooking the water and their wedding photographer captured the whole thing beautifully.
“We both really like the small and simple weddings”, Ulysses began. “Our children also inspire us, they were very central to our wedding. A unique part of our wedding was the Greenbrier. We really love that van and thought it would be nice to have it featured in our wedding pictures. Different to the norm? We are a non religious family and our wedding reflected that.”