Josh met Emma at a burlesque club in London. Both being performers, when they came to marry on April 5th this year, they wanted their day to reflect their entertainment backgrounds.
“As I’m a burlesque dancer and Josh plays guitar in a rock band we wanted to incorporate these loves into our wedding”, Emma told me. “Although we didn’t really set out to have a theme, we just picked things we both liked so the day ended up having a sort of vintage-rockabilly-burlesque-rock theme.”
“We had three burlesque performances by our lovely friends, we had a vintage jazz singer, we had a psycho-billy band and we had the amazing eclectic playlist created by Josh. Our first dance was a mash up of Elvis Presley’s I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You and Little Richard’s Tutti Frutti and we walked out of the ceremony room, as newlyweds, to the Star Wars Throne Room music complete with a Wookie roar from one of the congregation!”
There was also plenty of DIY in this wedding – in fact nearly all of the wedding was home made! “So much of the wedding was DIY that I don’t know where to start!”, Emma laughed. “This was initially in order to save money however it soon became clear we weren’t particularly saving money by doing it! It did, however, make our wedding personal and individual.”
Lee and Lowri were the lucky couple who won the free wedding photography contest that I recently hosted with VeVi Photography. Their wedding was held at Ocean Kave in Devon, which proved to be the perfect spot for their family-centric, colourful chaos wedding!
Lowri told me all about the amazing day. “We are still floating, after the incredible day that was our happy ending. We have both gone through a lot of painful times to get to it which made it all the more special. I had gone through a very acrimonious divorce and moved to Devon, to heal by the sea, near where I grew up. Gradually colour and happiness began to return to my life and once I decided to dip my toe in the water of dating I met Lee!”
“As soon as we got engaged we knew we wanted this to be a celebration of all the amazing close friends and family who had supported us both”, she continued. “We also knew we wanted nothing to be impersonal or super traditional. We both wanted to get married by the sea but finding a venue that would let us have our wedding our way seemed impossible. Then I stumbled across Ocean Kave and we booked it the day we saw it even though at this point the reception room wasn’t even built! We loved it because they said we could really personalise the space. They suggested we got married in the kave (yes it’s an actual cave) at twilight, having kicked off the party at 2pm, which sounded great to us. We loved that we got to enjoy the fun we had planned first, and it removed formality.”
It’s an undeniable cliché that I love all things surrounding weddings: the love, the family, the pretty dresses, the flowers… but I also love to hear the real stories behind these magical looking days. It’s all very well and good sharing the perfectly edited highlights online, but what really went down? Were there injuries? Was one supplier an utter nightmare? Did someone jump on a bouncy castle and end up with a bloody nose? Well, actually, now you come to mention it…
Jack and Krysten were married last July at the groom’s family home. “We wanted it to feel like a playground”, the bride told me. “One of the starting points was having the venue as Jack’s family home, a six-hundred-year-old farmhouse with outbuildings and a pond. There was also the fact that many guests were travelling for the wedding: I am Californian and had friends and family coming in from all across the states. In addition, both of us had friends flying in from various other countries; Canada, Israel, Korea. We felt that because people were travelling such distances, we should really give them a trip to remember, which led to the idea of having it over two days – the ceremony and reception on the Saturday, then a barbecue/ garden games/ recovery day on Sunday.”
You might not think a Victorian wedding theme would work when meshed with modern technology, but with the bride being a history buff, and the groom a technology geek, it was actually the perfect joint theme for them!
Michelle and Drew were married in November at Norwood Park, Nottinghamshire. “I have a great fondness (hmm… obsession) with history”, Michelle told me. “I studied it at university and frankly, I can’t get enough! Drew said he didn’t care what he wore for the wedding so long as he could wear a top hat and carry a cane! So my Victorian gothic revival fantasy wedding was born.”
The bride’s mother made her amazing dress. “I refused from the beginning to wear white and instead chose red for my gown”, she explained. “While lots of people see white as traditional, it’s actually a fairly recent trend. Queen Victoria wore white for her wedding, but this was very new and before that, women used to just wear their best gown or if they were rich enough, they had one made. So when I thought about it, I actually felt like I was being more traditional than any bride in white! Red was an early favourite. Deep reds, bright reds and purples featured heavily as, to me, they give a sense of luxury.”
Katy and Kerr wanted a bright and colourful wedding that would be fun for their guests. They chose to serve afternoon tea, followed by take away pizza in the evening! This not only saved them a lot of cash, but went down a storm with their guests!
“Our wedding theme was bright and colourful”, exclaimed Katy. “We wanted it to be full of fun and sunshine. The rainbow-ness and stars were sort of influenced by our shared love of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series and the Edgar Wright directed movie of the books. These take their inspiration from 8-bit and old-school computer games and that’s exactly what we wanted.”
“We are really pleased that people have commented what FUN it was”, she continued. “When we were planning, that was our absolute number one priority! There was nothing worth doing if it didn’t have love or fun at its heart! That took some people by surprise – it’s funny having a conversation with someone who doesn’t understand that ‘rainbow’ is a totally legitimate wedding colour theme!”
The couple decorated the space completely themselves from paper bunting from FunkyFrillsUK on Etsy, rainbow ribbons and plenty of bits from Hobbycraft! For their ‘cake’ they simply arranged pork pies from the supermarket on a cupcake stand! They decorated them with a customised cake topper made by one of the bridesmaids.
When I shared a preview of Fran and Lewis’ wedding on my Facebook page, you all FREAKED OUT – and with good reason too. I mean, just check out Fran’s killer Couture Company dress, those leopard Crown and Glory kitty ears and their guests of honour – their sphynx cats!
The pair were married at Tutbury Castle in Staffordshire and they had their reception of pizza and movies at home. “Our wedding was just ‘us'”, said Fran. “We wanted everything we love to be a part of the day. That meant cats, pizza, leopard print, Him (our favourite band) Frankenstein and horror films!”
“Our ceremony was a hand-fasting and it was our favourite part of the day. Jumping the broom was amazing… and we got to keep it afterwards! We did it outside so it was really cold and really windy (my Nan had 3 coats on!) but it was wonderful. We also loved having our ‘reception’ back at our own house. Just having our best friends there and watching Pet Semetary (our go-to horror film!) and relaxing was amazing.”