Tag Archives: DIY

A Laid-Back & Family-Central South African Wedding: Daniel & Annette

The beautiful South African wedding of Daniel & Annette was sent over to me by their wedding photographer Bruce of Flyinghorse Photography. Not only do I love the relaxed vibe of this day, but Annette’s short powder blue dress is just perfect!

The wedding was held at Hillhouse, Dargle and was a huge family occasion, with everybody pitching in to help.

“Daniel and I had so much fun planning the wedding, we got a kick out of every little detail and it was our special little project,” Annette wrote. “We didn’t want to spend a fortune on the wedding so we decided to do most things ourselves, with a lot of help from our friends and family. We are both not at all into big white weddings we basically just wanted to do the legal/official bit and then have a big party with all our friends and family. Ideally this would’ve involved something like going to Las Vegas with a bunch of friends. However it quickly became pretty clear that the most important people to us won’t be able to join us on such a crazy adventure, and we couldn’t do it without them so we started to look for something a bit closer to home.”

The ceremony pergola, the stationery, the signage, the flowers, the reception decor and the fire-pits for the bonfires were also put together by friends and family members. “My Mum made all the little hearts for the table placeholders and decorated the hanging wire and barbed wire hearts. She also made the boutonnieres and my garter. My Step-dad was head of the wine and champagne committee. While my Sad and Step-mum, who live in the area, were the local logistics committee. This includes providing tea, gluten-free pizza & quiche and transportation of chairs!”

“Daniel’s family came out from Australia and were here to help an support us leading up to the wedding,” Annette continued. “They all helped out too. We got most of the vases and jars for the flowers from a local glass manufacturer’s outlet store and Daniel and his brother Bevan covered blocks of wood in fabric for all the square centrepieces. I also searched far and wide for meters and meters of polka dot fabric, which we sewed into table cloths, I love polka dots!”

The couple spent a huge amount of time looking for their perfect venue, but they eventually found Hillhouse after seeing another wedding there on Rock n Roll Bride (wooo!) “We were all over the place trying to find a venue that didn’t feel like a wedding factory,” Annette explained. “We even drove 10 hours to Mozambique looking for a casual beach setting after we drunkenly proclaimed that we will get married on that beach the previous year at a music festival! But I somehow remembered the name of a venue I saw featured on Rock n Roll Bride that had become stuck in my head…Hillhouse. The converted shed on a beautiful farm overlooking Midmar Dam didn’t need much in décor, it is filled with antiques and artwork and the rustic floors, fireplace, roof and lighting just added perfectly to the look and feel of the place. The best part is that there are no restrictions and we could make noise as loud and as late as we wanted! From there everything seemed to fall in place.”

“The most important thing to us was that our guests and we have fun, that the music was good and that the food was tasty and gluten free! Turns out we achieved all those things! Firstly, with the most amazing wedding playlist compiled by us with input from our guests via our wedding website. Everything from ABBA to Zeppelin! Secondly the awesome talents of our caterer, Margie, whose meze platters, soups and main courses were both gluten free and soooo delicious! We weren’t really interested in having a wedding cake as we are both gluten intolerant so we went for a ‘Candy Shop’ for dessert. It was a HUGE hit and there was barely a square of fudge left the next day!”

“Finding the right photographer was always really important to us” the bride concluded. “I was starting to give up on finding a photographer that was even remotely cool when I stumbled on Bruce’s photos on Facebook. The photos I saw were from work he had done with a local South African band and we were blown away. We found out that he also did weddings and Daniel immediately said ‘Book him!'”

“In terms on a theme, we really just took all the elements of the things we love – music, tattoos, rustic/vintage décor, 1950s dresses, hearts, art… and threw it all together to make the day a true reflection of ourselves and the things we love. I could never picture myself in a white dress, not even as a little girl. I didn’t consciously set out NOT to have a white dress though. The idea for what I wore came from a blue dress I saw in the movie ‘500 Days of Summer.’ I was playing around with ideas based on this dress, thinking about what it would look like in white, and then Daniel said, ‘Why don’t you just keep it in blue?’ and that was it! I absolutely loved my dress, I loved the colour, the skirt and the fact that I could move around and dance in it. Daniel chose his own style for the boys clothes and even went out and found their own shoes. He also made me order the braces and buckles from the US because we couldn’t find what he wanted in South Africa!”

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An Indie Hipster Wedding: Will & Keri

Will & Keri’s Richmond, VA wedding was simple but effortlessly cool. The ceremony was held at Maymont Park, with the reception that followed at The Boathouse Restaurant at Rocketts Landing. “We really didn’t want to over do it on the decorations since both venues we’re so beautiful on their own,” Keri told me. “We found a lot of things on Etsy, and the rest we made ourselves. The heart on the tree at our ceremony was a grey chalkboard heart purchased from Urban Outfitters, we painted our initials on it with white paint and tied it to the tree with rope.”

“After the ceremony we took it around the city taking pictures at our favorite spots in Richmond. We decided for the ceremony to just add small bundles of dried lavender to the chairs, it was really beautiful and simple. We also had a little table set up with hot apple cider for the guests after the I Do’s.”

“I always envisioned our wedding to be more of a casual gathering of the people we loved rather than a formal meeting where people watched us exchange vows,” she continued. “I wanted our guests to feel comfortable and welcome to stay as long as they liked especially since we had so many guests from out of town. At the Boathouse, since it’s such a modern venue we wanted to keep the decorations simple and just let the architecture speak for itself.”

“Our florist, Alexis at The Green Flamingo was absolutely amazing, when we told her where we were getting married and how we just wanted to complement the venues with simple yet elegant floral arrangements she knew exactly what would work. It was like she was inside my brain and could see everything I was imagining. We just kept it simple with white linens and mason jars filled with all different kinds of wild flowers, it really helped pull the two venues together. And we found these awesome chalkboard labels at michaels for $1, we painted on table number and tied them to the mason jars with ribbon.”

Keri wore a beautiful Jenny Yoo gown with antique jewellery. Her simple ensemble made her feel comfortable and like ‘herself’ which was another thing that both she and Will wanted to make sure was prevalent throughout their wedding. They explain, “When trying to decide what we wanted our wedding to be like we had two very different ideas. Keri wanted a simple kitchy outdoor wedding while Will wanted an modern indoor wedding. So we decided to morph both ideas together and made it so prefect, it really felt like we were being true to ourselves and our own personal styles.”

Maymont was an easy choice for the ceremony, it has always been one of our favorite parks in Richmond and is super close to our house. Normally Maymont holds their wedding ceremonies at specifically built spots throughout the park, but we really loved this tree that stands isolated in the middle of a field. It’s so gnarly and unique it just fit us perfectly.”

The Boathouse was a really perfect find. It’s located in a newly built up area downtown right along the river that runs through Richmond and had the most amazing view of the city. It was an old factory converted into a 3 level restaurant, it’s super modern but with an old Richmond flair with exposed brick and an old smoke stack kept as a significant part of its architecture. The building itself is so beautiful we didn’t want to really over do it on the decorations.”

“One of the best things we took away from our wedding is that you should always stay true to who you are, don’t let anyone try and convince you to do something you don’t want to,” the couple concluded. “Who cares about etiquette? Weddings are all about starting your lives together, having fun and celebrating with the people you love most!”

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A Bohemian Hoedown Wedding: Reenie & Edwin

As soon as I saw bride Reenie in that incredible floppy hat I knew I had to feature her wedding. I love seeing brides that make really unique styling choices and I don’t know about you but I can remember ever seeing a bride in a hat like this before. With her fabulous head wear she wore a 1970s style dress, which was the very first thing she bought, from Nataya for just $199!

The October wedding was held at Hampton Hall Farm, Jefferson City, TN and their laid back hippy vibe makes me wish I was there. I love how homely and cosy it all looks and that the whole family got involved. The photos of them all having a pre-ceremony sing-along on the porch are just the best!

“I couldn’t come up with ‘wedding colors’ or a particular ‘theme’,” Reenie told me. “I didn’t want to be one of those brides that stuck my girls in my favorite colors knowing that not all of them can pull of chartreusse. One day I noticed these really cute retro aprons in the window of Bliss, and it all kind of fell into place. My wedding colors were ‘quilt.’ I picked out about 20 fabric patterns and had them pick the three they wanted incorporated into their dresses.”

“I wanted everything to be comfortable, inviting, and informal. When folks arrived, there was wine on the tables and little plates of goodies to tide them over. The party started when you arrived. In fact we were all so laid back I forgot to carry by bouquet to our ceremony! I only noticed it was missing on the way back up the aisle!”

“The ‘quilt’ idea continued into our ceremony. Edwin and I stood one that my sister had made for my Father after our Mom passed away. It was made from all of Mom’s pajamas. Since both my Mom and Dad have passed, it was a way of having them there, under our feet.”

The couple wanted an ‘outdoor/indoor’ feel and so set up little outdoor rooms for people to congregate comfortably and naturally. They had hay bales covered in fabric and a makeshift bar and lounge area in the barn.

“I like kids at weddings”, the bride concluded. “When I was a kid, we always went to our huge clan’s Cathloic weddings. The receptions always tended to be informal garden parties. Us kids ran around and had a ball. My friends, Chris and Candice, who own Hampton Hall Farm, have a 5-year-old by named Will (he was my ring bearer). So there was lots of play-stuff around for the kids. Lots of trees to climb, places to hide. I have fun watching kids having fun.”

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DIY Tutorial: Twine Ball Light Garland

This simple and cute tutorial to make your own twine ball light garland is right up my street. Thank you to Michelle Kelly of Pocketful of Dreams for putting it together for us!

Over to you Michelle…

I’ve seen twine balls used for all sorts of purposes, from chandeliers to pretty table decor, so I thought I’d have a go at making a light garland using this idea. I wanted something that would create a really pretty lighting effect, but I also wanted the string to have quite a strong and vibrant colour.

So I chose to use coloured twine, alternating between pink and purple twine balls. But what I actually found was that the glue and cornflour mixture tended to make the colour look a little dulled and whitewashed, it still looked pretty and works really well if you have more of a muted colour-scheme, however this is not the look I was going for. So to create the vibrancy I wanted I sprayed my twine balls with spraypaint once they had dried, this gave them a really lovely sheen as well as the strong colour I wanted, so this is worth noting if you want strong as opposed to muted colours. And of course if you are spraying yours you can use any twine, you don’t need to go to the expense of sourcing pretty coloured ones.

Supplies Needed:

♥ Twine – Either plain or in colours of your choosing
♥ PVA Glue – About 1/2 litre
♥ Cornflour
♥ Warm water
♥ Balloons
♥ Marker pen
♥ Vaseline
♥ Old tray for the glue mixture
♥ A broom or long piece of wood to hand the balloons from
♥ Twinkly light garland to attach the twine-balls to
♥ Fishing wire
♥ Spray paint in the colours of your choice – I used Rustoleum painters touch multi-purpose paint

Method:

Step One: First of all blow-up the balloons, one for each twine-ball you want to make. Smear the balloons with a thin coating of vaseline (this will stop your twine from sticking to the balloons).

Step Two: Tie a piece of string to the ends of each balloon and then around an old piece of wood (I had mine balanced across the backs of two chairs in my backyard). Make sure you have something underneath, like plastic sheeting or bin bags to catch all the drips.

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Simple Upcycling Ideas for Your Wedding Dress

Photography Credit: Leila Brewster Photography (full wedding here)

I love love love the idea of making my own wedding dress. I am, however, more than a little bit sucky with a sewing machine. Alas!

However this week I chatted to eco-wedding dress designer Deborah Lindquist about some simple upcycling ideas.

Launched in 2004, Deborah’s eco-conscious clothing line combines environmental responsibility with a cutting-edge aesthetic. Deborah works her fashion magic with a mixture of environmentally-friendly fabrications and the resulting designs are as striking as they are ecologically sensitive. As a trailblazer at the forefront of the stylish green clothing movement, Deborah is making an impact in the fashion world while remaining true to her love for the environment.

So as you can see, she’s the perfect person to talk about upcycling with, I think even I could do a few of these things…

♥  ♥  ♥

Will you marry me?

It’s not a question easily answered. There is a whole life to be created with the person you love so much. What do you like to do together? Who are your mentors? Your inspiration? How would you like your life to ultimately unfold? How do you stay important to each other?

It’s all about the two of you, and how you plan your wedding, what you wear, how you spend your honeymoon and how you unfold the rest of your life together should reflect who you are as a couple. Since the bride usually does much of the planning, it can sometimes look like ‘her’ day, and we all know how that can get…

Photography Credit: Nicole Polk Photography (full wedding here)

I have seen the most creative, happy wedding celebrations ever on Rock n Roll Bride. I love how tradition is mixed with personal creativity to make the day such a celebration of love and happiness. You are, after all, your best influence and teacher. The things, people, and places you love should be an integral part of your wedding.

I’m an eco-clothing designer and I design many things, including wedding dresses.

Four of my brides have been featured on these pages, and I have been so inspired by all of the women I’ve come to know as I’ve created their gowns. I’ve even named some gowns after some of them. Today, I wanted to share with the readers of Rock n Roll Bride some ideas of how to customise your own wedding outfit, and to create a dress that should be named after you!

Photography Credit: Chennergy (full wedding here and here)

Take things from the past

As you begin your search for the most beautiful gown you can imagine, would you maybe like to include something from your past that makes you feel loved?  You can pretty much have anything you want it’s just all about knowing how to incorporate it into your dress.

Recycle and Upcycling

Maybe you felt close to your Grandmother, and she loved to wear the most exquisite beaded wool sweater. It was special, she treated it with care, and stored it safely in her cedar chest. You want to get married in the winter, when the snow is falling. The days are short, and you want to be married by candlelight. You don’t want to wear a sweater, but how about using this sweater in your wedding dress? You could even use the wool to create the top of the dress – perfect for winter! You’ll be warm and toasty as well as wearing a one-of-a-kind creation with a lot of sentimental meaning.

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A Quirky Country Diner Wedding (Dinosaurs Welcome): Sam & Stew

What started as an ‘in’ joke about a love of dinosaurs, ended up being the  inspiration for Sam & Stew’s wedding, which took place in South Africa last September. “Neither of us can really remember where the dinosaur thing started,” Sam explained, “but it is now well and truly an inside family joke – the fact that Stew and I are ‘dinosaurs-for-life’. I found the plastic models at Pollocks Toy museum in London, and added the little details to turn them into our very own bridasaurus & groomasaur, cake toppers (by far and away the groom’s favourite part of the decor!)”

The couple knew they wanted a casual wedding, one that screamed ‘them’ and one that all their friends and family would enjoy. “The idea of a formal wedding day, frankly – scared me!” the bride continued, “Giving ourselves permission to go ‘off script’ and make our day more FUN than formal made all the difference! My Mom (who never believed I’d get married) used to joke that if the day should ever arrive, she’d stretch the budget as far as the local hamburger joint, and treat everyone to a milkshake and fries. So, that’s just what we did! Our caterer was wonderful, and created a gourmet five star ‘Build Your Own Burger’ feast that included salads, homemade relish, a choice of filling and even a veggie patty – made from chickpeas.”

“We also opted for a lunchtime wedding – unusual in South Africa, because we wanted to relax with our close friends and family after the more official part of the day was over….which we did, looooong into the night!”

“Our day would not have been the same without the help from our families,” she concluded. “My amazing and beloved 92 year old Grandpa hand made all our blackboard signage, and allowed us to raid his shed for old milk cans, farm buckets and brass coal skuttles. To not only have him with us on the day, and share a dance with him, but also look around and see his handiwork displayed on every table was unforgettable!”

 

“From my Grandpa’s DIY blackboards, to the cake, and to my Dad’s valiant effort to drink enough Miller’s to create the impressive ‘hanging garden’ backdrop. We also asked Stew’s Gran to make us a batch of her famously delicious fudge (which we added to the dessert table) and we made a batch of my Gran’s super secret cookie recipe for our favours.”

The bride even wore her Grandmother’s wedding dress, a vintage original from 1947. Although it needed a few repairs it fitted her like a glove and it was a really special to Sam to be able to wear the same dress that her Grandmother did 64 years ago.

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