Tag Archives: DIY

An Informal Picnic Wedding with a Touch of Vintage: Michelle & Jodie

Being a wedding planner herself, newlywed Michelle knew exactly what she wanted for her British Summertime wedding to Jodie. In the 18 months of their engagement she spent hours crafting and painstakingly putting together their  vintage and craft themed day. “I wouldn’t change a thing!” she explained. “We had so much fun planning the day, we did everything from choosing the playlists to writing our vows and designing the picnic menus.”

“Being a planner I wanted to make sure our wedding was different from all the weddings I’ve been involved with, ensuring that the day reflected us and our love of all things vintage.  The first thing for me was that the day needed to be informal, a family event. I remembered having big family picnic in the park when I was little and how happy everyone was, laughing, drink and playing games in the sunshine, and that was the feeling I wanted our guests to have. Jodie introduced me to Babycham a few years ago and since then it’s become one of our favourite tipples, so it was only right that we have a Babycham reception complete with original Babycham saucers and mini bottles with cute stripy straws.”

“Our wedding breakfast was a yummy picnic, with sweet course of afternoon tea cakes and goodies,” she continued. “I’d collected over 500 pieces of vintage china, which we used at the tea. All the produce was sourced from local farm shops and suppliers, and then put into beautiful vintage hampers that I had collected over the years. Each hamper was finished off with a flower arrangement in a vintage tin and a table name (all were places close to our hearts) in the style of vintage beer mats.”

“The evening was all about having fun, with a vintage ice cream trailer, personalised with Mr & Mrs Miles, retro sweeties in ornate jars, a swing out carousel and vintage board games.  The guest book was a type writer, where we asked guests to type us a message and hand it on the wishing tree (a hat stand lovingly decorated by Jodie). We hung pictures of Jodie and I from our engagement shoot in Bath, to bring some of his home town to the wedding.”

“The car park had homemade flags of our home towns too. There are so many more details that I loved, the for your tears of joy vintage hankies that I collected and people help themselves to at the ceremony (lucky really as it was such a tear-jerker), the lace jars, face frames, haybale covers with vintage fabric collected from markets, the floral arrangements in birdcages, lanterns and vintage tins, the paper pom poms and lanterns that hung between the barn and stretch tent…. there’s just too much to mention.”

The majority of Michelle & Jodie’s wedding was homemade by the pair – from the decoupage pegs, to the paper pom poms and face frames.

Gorgeous huh?

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An Outdoor Ceremony & A Summer Fete Themed Wedding: Emily & Oliver

Emily & Oliver were legally married at Brighton Town Hall with only their immediate family in attendance. Then two days later they celebrated with all their friends & family Ridge Farm in Surrey. They started the day with an outdoor ceremony (not currently legal in England, hence the register office ceremony.)

“I first went to Ridge Farm a couple of years earlier to a music festival called Firegathering organised by a friend of my sister, they had got married there themselves,” Emily told me. “It came to mind as a venue to look round and when I took Oli he feel in love at first sight.  A big advantage was we could have the venue for 4 days!  We have always enjoyed the day after a wedding as the much as the wedding day itself, all ice has been well and truly broken and its just fab to carry on the party when you have all your loved ones together.”

Ridge Farm has 11 bedrooms, plenty of land to camp on, a huge bonfire site (great for late night chats), there is a pool house which is covered for the wedding breakfast and then uncovered the following day so that we could have a very informal BBQ and pool party.  The venue has amazing rock history and used to have a studio on site, the walls in the house are covered with albums that have been recorded there – artists include Sade, Ozzy Osbourne, James, Pearl Jam, Roxy Music etc.”

“The Ridge Farm ceremony was performed by Peter at Light on Life,” Emily continued. “We knew that Ridge Farm was the venue for us and they do not have a license to perform legally binding marriages, we didn’t want to spend the day traipsing round the countryside, so decided to have a very intimate ‘legal’ wedding with immediate family and a ceremony in the Orchard all our guests could enjoy.”

“Peter wrote a bespoke ceremony for us and ran with all my partner’s crazy ideas such as parents making and exchanging family flags/pennants during the ceremony.  We hired some fete style games such as a coconut shy and splat the rat for people to enjoy/mingle round over the two days – it was Peter’s idea to cut a red ribbon after the ceremony to declare the ‘fete’ open.”

The festival and fete theme of the wedding was brought together by some subtle and cute details. These included bunting from Beautiful Bunting, a tent from The Arabian Tent Company and fete games hired from Carousel Events.

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A Handmade Campsite Wedding: Maria & Chris

A campsite in Wales played host to Maria & Chris’ fabulous wedding. With the help of their friends & family the couple pulled a lot of the wedding together themselves. The flowers played a huge part in the styling of their day as Maria explained, “For the flowers I wanted it to look as though we had picked them all from the fields that morning and used whatever we had lying around to put them in.  We had been collecting vintage china for some time and used the various jugs, bowls and cups & saucers for the flowers on the tables.  The campsite also had some rustic enamel jugs that we used too.  Some of these Flowers I had ordered from the florist (Peonies, Cornflower, Lavender, Margharites etc) but the rest my Mum, her neighbour and my Auntie’s had brought with them from their gardens!  The Tipi was decorated with ribbon and Ivy from my Parent’s garden too.”

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“All the table decorations were put together by my Chris’ Mum and one of my Bridesmaids,” the bride continued. “It was late Friday, the night before the wedding and it was flower chaos! In the end it was all hands on deck and friends and family were all stepping in to help.  Chris’ Mum also made 60+ stunning little bead & wire dragonflies to sit in the table decorations. I also had three silver butterflies that were a pair of earrings and a pin that belonged to Chris’ Grandma. She sadly passed away two years ago and by having the butterflies in my bouquet it was my small way of having her near all day.”

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“We also used bay leaves and white roses that my two Granddads (who are no longer with us) had grown, in the table decorations – so the flowers became a very personal thing!”

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The relaxed wedding didn’t really have a specific ‘theme’, the couple just wanted to pull together all the things they loved for their day. “We have always loved retro, vintage and homemade – long before it became fashionable again! So our inspiration was really always around us – homemade items created by friends and family and secondhand items that had a second lease of life (we left the vintage china at Fforest Farm to be reused at other peoples weddings!) Our inspiration was also the wonderful Fforest Farm and the countryside surrounding it.”

The bride wore a stunning Cymbeline dress which the bought online. “I originally was going to hunt down a vintage dress and after trawling the internet had made a list of specialist shops to visit in London.  Then  was on the internet one evening at my parents when my said ‘try eBay for a dress’ – I said that I had given up looking but my mum was insistent and there waiting for me was my dress to be! So – I purchased my dress from a very lovely girl on eBay! She originally bought the dress from Paris and it was made by Cymbeline, my Mum took the top in slightly but other than that it was perfect in every way!”

Can I also just draw your attention to this cake!? It was made by the bride’s Mum and both she and the bride crocheted the flowers and cake topper. How cute?! “The knitted and crocheted flowers were my idea,” said Maria, “and my Mum added the Mice and the mini version of our dog Poppy! I crocheted a few of the flowers but my Mum knitted & Crocheted the majority – she’s far more talented than me!”

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A DIY Fashion Shoot Using The Rock n Roll Bride Planning Notebook!

A photo shoot featuring the Rock n Roll Bride planning notebooks!? Oh yes that’s one sure-fired way to get my attention!

“We styled the whole shoot ourselves using items from eBay (and of course the Rock n Roll Bride notebook,” photographer Jaye of  Tux & Tales Photography told me. “We decided we would do a few styled shoots ourselves on a shoestring budget. I think it is a great way to show brides that they can have a fun and fab style with a little pocket change and a lot of elbow grease. I hope you enjoy my ultra-rad millinery. Picture me sitting on the living room floor, feathers flying everywhere whilst my cat tries to run off with the hat in his mouth every time I turn around to get another feather. The bouquet I made myself out of crepe paper. Boo (our model) is a burlesque performer so she did her own hair & make up!”

“As for inspiration – we were really dedicated to a shoot which was going to demonstrate the beauty of the North,” Jaye continued. “Although we  had a brief stint in Essex, we are really Northerners at heart and I wanted to do something fun and sassy that shows Yorkshire at its best. The photos taken in front of Drax (the coal fire plant) are particularly special to me. People often complain about the North of England being ‘too industrial’ but that is exactly what we love about it. There is something so optimistic about industry. The big factories are where hard working people go to create the fabulous things we use and eat every day.”

“We stopped and took the pictures with your amazing little planner when we were on our way to the power plant shoot. We were at a park near our house and there are a few really rad, grotty little buildings which we thought made a pretty Rock n Roll backdrop. Ever the northern lass, Boo only needed to be told ‘act like a rockstar’ and I just had to be around to press the button!”

The Rock n Roll Bride planning notebooks and wallplanners are available to purchase exclusively through notonthehighstreet.com. For prices and further info, clicky here.

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A “Totally Neat, Totally Sweet” Music-Themed Wedding: April & Rich

“Some people described our wedding theme as Rockabilly, but the only rockabilly music was played at the ceremony,” newlywed April told me. “We are punk rockers at heart, but listen to a wide variety of music in the rock genre.  We thought it would be very difficult to do a punk rock wedding and still keep it somewhat formal.  (Rich’s family is Catholic and I am not religious in any way.  We didn’t want to horrify his grandmother!)”

“We chose Johnny Cash, Gene Vincent and Wanda Jackson for ceremony music.  I walked down the aisle to “Rose of my heart” by Johnny Cash.   I had “rose of my heart” engraved in Rich’s wedding ring.  It was a surprise and when Rich saw it after the ceremony, he got tears in his eyes.  It was one of my favorite moments of the day.  My grandfather died exactly 3 weeks before the wedding.  He was a Johnny Cash fan, so this made it even harder to keep my emotions in check while walking down the aisle.”

As you can see, music played a big part in April & Rich’s wedding. In fact a lot of the significant times in their relationship were down to music too! “Rich and I met on April 7, 1997 at a high school dance,” April continued. ” I was about to turn 16, and he was just a baby at age 14! I was a sophomore and he was in eighth grade.  I was seeing someone else at the time.  It was a very on and off relationship, and I was always miserable.  And full of angst! Rich was always trying to cheer me up.  We talked on the phone for hours every night.  I still remember the day that he told me that if I ditched Brian and started to date him and listen to Reel Big Fish, I would be much happier!  I took his advice, and the next two years were some of the best of my life”

“We both love music and started going to shows when we could.  The first punk rock show we ever went to together was the Casualties.  We went with Amy (maid of honor) and had the best time.  (Of course, we snuck out of the fire hall to make out in the dug out for a while.)  The first big concert we went to was the Cherry Poppin Daddies, Green Day and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones in 1998. We met and had our picture taken with Dicky Barrett from the Bosstones.  We displayed this picture at the wedding. Rich was really into ska in high school.  I went on a trip to NY and bought him a hat at Moon Ska Records.  He still has it.”

Obviously the wedding playlist was a vitally important part of the wedding to this couple and they spent a lot of time getting it perfect. “When coming up with the wedding playlist, we originally wanted to choose 1 song from each band we have seen live together.  But, we couldn’t find any appropriate Casualties songs!  We played 1 song by The Donna’s, my all time favorite band.  We went backstage with the Donna’s last year.  I was so excited and told my friend, ‘All I wanted to do in high school was meet the Donna’s and marry Rich Thompson! Dreams do come true.’  When we were in high school, Rich used to sing the song Totally by Screeching Weasel to me.  We used lyrics from this song on our save the date cards.  ‘Totally neat, totally sweet, totally knocked me off my feet.’  Rich’s Mom had our cake knife engrave with ‘totally neat, totally sweet.’  Rich and I both love Rancid.  We played ‘Radio’ (‘I never fell in love, til I fell in love with you.  Never knew what a good time was, til I had a good time with you!’)  We also played ‘Who would’ve thought’.”

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A Quirky, 1950’s & DIY London Wedding: Rebecca & Morgan

I fell in love with Rebecca & Morgan’s quirky wedding as soon as it landed in my inbox and I’m honoured and super excited to share it with you today…especially because they used some of my favourite suppliers (including Lisa Jane Photography and Vivien of Holloway) and well as some of the DIY project that I’ve posted on my blog. Yey!

Rebecca told me all about their fabulous wedding. “Morgan and I grew up only 8 miles apart and even went to the same secondary school; in fact he was in my sister’s year in school. However we didn’t meet each other until April 2009, believe it or not he sent me a facebook friendship request, we went for a date and a crazy year later I asked him to be my fiancé. I even commissioned a ring from the quirky designer Amber France as a surprise, he said yes (sigh of relief on my side). Our daughter Efa was born and things went on the back burner and then 7 months later on my birthday he gave me a beautiful blue opal ring, it was like a green light!”

“So we started chatting about our ideas and planning. We’re both artist so we knew our wedding would be different and would have to truly represent our characters and what we love in life. We had originally planned to have the wedding in 2013 and Morgan wanted to have it in North Wales where we’re from but things had been hard of late and I couldn’t justify spending all that money just on one day. We just had to make the difficult decision to leave London, which meant leaving all our friends and our way of life behind, so I suggested to Morgan let’s get married before we go. In the end London was where we met and where Efa was born and that was the start of our 7 weeks to plan a wedding.”

“We both wanted something fun, relaxed and most importantly something that was us. We choose our local Town hall for the ceremony and got married on a Friday. Morgan chose his local pub for the lunch, Pembury Tavern and I found The Royal Inn on the Park and rented the private room upstairs for the evening party. It was all based in the borough of Hackney where we use to live. We had a strict budget so DIY was a must but being creative types and having arty friends to get involved made it fun not a chore.”

“We did so many DIY decorations but our favourite projects were the recycled paper flowers that I got from Rock n Roll Bride. I made 57 of them and even used old vintage flower arranging books to make them.  I also enjoyed making the felt flower button holes/brooches for the wedding party; I made Morgan a sunflower to match my bouquet. Plus the badges we gave as favours, Morgan and I spent hours making around 250 badges from vintage photography, anatomy, flower arranging books which Morgan uses for his art. He purchased a badge machine couple of months before for our etsy shop DyfalDonc and it just made sense to use it for the favours.”

“I knew I was never going to wear a traditional wedding dress, I never wear white or cream and I love colour, so I choose cobalt/royal blue. I spent hours searching on the internet for a dress and end up buying my shoes first from Irregular Choice, I was in love. With the 50’s style in my shoes I knew I had to find a dress to match and went to Vivien of Holloway. After trying on a couple of dresses, even one in ivory for my Mam but not liking any, my friend Nia found it hanging on the rack hidden between other dresses the only halter neck circle dress in blue, in my size. Happy days.  She even bought it for me as my wedding present. I added French blue and royal blue petticoats underneath, made a forget-me-not felt brooch, bought a chiffon ivory bolero from Sew Cool Creations on ebay and vintage porcelain forget-me-not flower earrings at a bargain price of £2. To finish the look my friend Roxi who is also a burlesque dancer did my hair and make-up and created my wonderful headpiece.”

“We didn’t have a strict theme but we would say our wedding was 50’s, Sunflowers, Italian dinning, Badges, Vintage, Blue, Scrabble, Beer Mats, Cakes, Reggae, Welsh maps, Yorkshire puds, Curly Wurly’s, Moustaches, Retro, Bunting, Yellow, Ska and so much more.”

“The advice we would give to other bride and grooms-to-be that are planning a quick wedding on a strict budget is to make lots and lots of lists!! DIY is the way to go and get yourselves a good photographer. We’re so grateful to Kat that we found Lisa Jane Photography on Rock n Roll Bride; she’s a lovely person and a fantastic photographer. Thumbs up all round.”

“We had a brilliant time planning and organising and creating for the wedding, from the cake and sweet table, to searching for the vintage and retro fabrics for our bunting, to spending hours making our playlist for the evening party to designing our invitations. But at the end of the day it’s our friends and family that make it extra special so we just want to say thank you to them for sharing it with us.”

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