After a beautifully simple Brooklyn engagement shoot, I would have expected nothing less of Rebecca & Ben than the effortlessly elegant backyard wedding that they had. Married in Ben’s parents Rhode Island back garden, the wedding was a DIY affair.
“I made bouquets with my friends from flowers that grew down the street at Young’s family farm,” Rebecca told me. “I made the flower garlands that hung up around the pink boxer bar. I made all the napkins from Amy Butler fabric. I collected vases and jars at garage sales and streetwise junkyard shops near Brooksville, Maine.”
The bride wore a J Crew dress with nineteenth century jewellery bought from Gray and White, NYC.
OK so it isn’t much surprise that I pretty much died when I first saw Ian & Jo’s wedding. The woods! The campfire! The bride wearing freakin’ antlers! Oh my lord I’m so thrilled to be blogging this baby.
“Our wedding was had a subtle vintage 1920’s summer fete theme,” Jo wrote, “We love art, creativity and community. The things that make us human. The wedding was never about me & Ian exclusively, marriage to us means the joining of many, a coming together. It was our opportunity to share our love for each other, and extend it to our loved ones. That day was for all of us. I think that vibe came across.”
The wedding took place at Lord Hyde wood in Watford. “Tony the Farmer next door lent us his field for camping which we shared with his beautiful, pregnant old breed cattle” the bride continued. “We made as much of the decorations, clothing and games that we could with help from friends and family. I would definitely recommend that. Don’t follow tradition, do it the way you want. What exactly is a ‘favour’ anyway?”
“What made the day work was the wonderful family and friends that we have. All of whom threw themselves into the community spirit of the day, getting involved with the set up, the mucking in, clearing up. It was a real team effort and the vibe was one of togetherness and love. Life is good when we are in relationship with each other in an open, honest and loving way. Nothing was too much trouble for anyone and the day shone with magic.”
Jo wore a dress from Jane Bourvis on Portabello Road which she customised with vintage lace and pearls purchased from markets and from Annie’s Vintage. Her incredible headpiece (seriously, I’ve never seen anything like it!) was hand made by bride with help from her chief Bridesmaid, Nicole. “We think there are 4,000 beads all hand stitched and it took about 90 hours to complete. The design was inspired from 1920’s headdresses.”
Aaaah-mazing. Oh and Pete (photographer Emma Case‘s partner in crime) made a video on his iPhone too. Whoooa. Love it.
I’m officially dying over this wedding. Overly dramatic maybe but oh Lordy how beautiful is everything? Emi sure has that ethereal look down. Her Baby Ceylon gown (found on eBay) and vintage veil combo is just perfect…and don’t even get me started on her short evening dress by Jones + Jones and Jeffrey Campbell American Flag boots. Seriously…
The DIY wedding was held at Blo Norton Hall in London (its hard to believe this place is in the city!) The humanist ceremony took place 5 years to they day that the couple met. After the touching ceremony, the speeches were held outside in the beautiful grounds. The informal wedding breakfast was also held outside.
“I don’t know how to put our inspiration into words,” Emi wrote. “The main thing for us is that our wedding was all about everything and everyone we loved. We wanted it to be a mish mash of vintage and DIY but to keep it beautiful and not too contrived. So much was made by friends and family, from the bridesmaids dresses, the decorations, the cake, the food and even the flowers.”
“We had originally planned to marry outside on the lawn, but as the day approached the weather was being a little ‘British’ so on the morning of the wedding we moved it indoors to what would later be the dancefloor. We pulled the curtains, lit all the candles, littered the floor with petals and switched on the heart! It couldn’t have been more perfect (and as it was the sun shone all day…)”
“Adam and many of his friends are all musicians, but we actually didn’t want the day to be too Rock n Roll – otherwise it would’ve turned into one big jamming session! We wanted it to be more like an English garden party, lots of friends, lots of food, lots of love, and croquet on the lawn. And that’s exactly what we got – oh, and one hell of a party at the end of it!”
Kristy & Patrick were married at Scottadito, a traditional Tuscan restaurant in Brooklyn. After lunch together, the whole wedding party paraded down the street to their reception venue, The Rock Shop, where they partied into the night. They planned their wedding in just two months and were adamant that they would have their day their way.
“On one level, we are just a little bit quirky and I definitely did not want the standard wedding affair,” Kristy told me. “Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but we just figured that plenty of other people do it, so it might be fun to shake things up a little! On another level, my Dad is deceased and I didn’t want to feel any sort of absence on the day of my wedding, so we cut out the aisle so I didn’t have to walk down one by myself (instead I ran in the restaurant shaking a tambourine – so fun!) and forgot the parent dances.”
“Our wedding was fun and filled with love (and parades!) Our idea of a wedding was definitely different than most peoples’ and we got the sense that people either loved it or thought it was a bit strange. But we pushed forward and figured that we’re only getting married once and wanted to be totally happy with it. In the end, our wedding was exactly what we wanted and more than we could have imagined. It was perfect.”
Oh South Africa you do have some beautiful light…and how lucky are Zigi & Warren to have had Shanna Jones Photography to capture it so magically?
“We wanted a different wedding that represented our style,” Zigi told me. “Something that was unique to us as a couple. Warren is into Cars/Bikes & Fashion. I am into Food/Art/design…and unfortunately cars too. We decided to do a Road trip to our destination (this is something we do often & is actually part of our lives). The plan was to do it over 4 days & 3 nights to ensure we really don’t miss anything, but also get the time to spend with the various groups of people. The plan was that the entire group would get to know each other by being in the same town for 3 nights. This would mean on the wedding night we can just hang!! Quite a few of our friends are muscle car collectors – so about 10 cars drove up (where others brought their off-road bikes to go into the mountains).”
Zigi looked stunning in her black and ivory dress, made of a collection of items that she put together herself. She explained, “I have always been a lover of vintage clothing & knew it should be a combination of old & new with a hint of black. I never imagined myself getting married in an all white dress; so decided to add a lot of black. My skirt was a 1930’s wedding dress (cut up to only be a heavy satin skirt) from the Cats Meow; my black velvet corset was made by my friend Cathy and my neck piece was an incredible find and really made my outfit. Barbara from the Cats Meow showed it to me on her camera & I was immediately sold. It was her private piece that she sent to London to be evaluated. It is a black 1880’s Victorian neck piece. My headpiece was made of net from dress makers collection, a diamante cameo and a blue hair piece for my ‘something blue’. Finally I wore gloves which were a gift from my friend, Maria.”
The inspiration for Warren’s outfit was “old English industrial era meets Clock Work Orange meets Oliver Twist meets Sherlock Holmes.” He wore an English tuxedo with single button long tail, a shirt from a second hand thrift store in Amsterdam and a Bailey Bowler Hat from the USA. His cane was made from R1 Rifle bullet shells and was borrowed from a friend.
“The theme of our wedding was ‘ with a twist’ and our guests all got involved in it,” continued the bride. ” The twist could be anything you like to add to your style – be it shorts with a jacket or a head piece….or red nails if that is daring to you? So each bridesmaid and groomsmen had their own outfit on…with a slight twist. The only critera the bridesmaids were given was to wear black and white and possibly vintage clothes.”
“It is also incredibly hot in Matjiesfontein in summer; which means that no flowers will last a day, especially if the table is outside. So we decided on paper flowers. We also didn’t want a cake, instead we decided on lindt chocolate shot glasses from Lindt with Amarula cream/fudge….a candy floss machine with candy floss & two ginger bread men right at the end.”
Becca & Gary’s wedding looks like it was a lot of fun, dispite the rain! The first part of the day was a handfasting ceremony and morning reception in the bride’s Gran’s back garden. Afterwards the couple went to the registry office for the ‘legal bit’ and the day was rounded off by them going to Nozstock Festival and staying in their very own honeymoon suite – a tipi!
“We knew straight away that we didn’t want a traditional wedding and we both loved the idea of running away together to get married in secret but at the same time we wanted all our friends there too,” the bride told me.”We’d both been to weddings that felt impersonal and where we’d both felt nervous and out of place so our mission was to try and make the day as chilled out and as comfortable for everyone as possible. Gary came up with idea of going to a festival instead of a wedding reception and it all sort of fell into place.”
“My Gran’s garden was 5 minutes away from Nozstock and as soon as Noz confirmed the festival dates we started to organise a wedding. Everything we did we did because we wanted to. We didn’t have a hen or a stag do because we didn’t want one, we didn’t have speeches at the wedding because neither of us wanted to make one and we fed everyone muesli and prunes because we like muesli and prunes!”
“Some ladies want to feel like a princess on their wedding day but I’ve got an obsession with 80’s hair metal and all I wanted really was to feel like a rock star for the day! I didn’t plan to wear aviators at all, I grabbed them at the last minute with the vague idea that by wearing them I might encourage the sun to come out… Looking at the photos I’m soooo glad I did though as they looked incredibly cool. Turning up at the registry office with muddy boots, slightly trashed wedding dress and tattoos with our two witnesses felt pretty Rock n Roll and then arriving at the festival with Sassy our photographer definitely fulfilled some of my rock star dreams.”
Becca wore an Ian Stuart dress which she bought second hand on eBay. “I was gutted when I woke up and it was raining but in the end we were glad that it did as the mist added to the magical atmosphere and meant there was no option of being precious about my dress,” she told me. “I think we well and truely rocked the outdoor rainy wedding with no plan B.”