Ashlea & Joel’s wedding was a mash up of everything they love and they actually found it quite difficult to narrow their wedding down to one particular ’theme’. “We found it really difficult to come up with a theme or concept to tie everything together, because we really weren’t fussy and just loved everything we saw!” explained Ashlea. “Eventually we decided to give it a garden and green theme, and felt our reception flowers made the room feel beautiful and lush just like we wanted. Siglo, the terrace bar at The European, where we had our ceremony, was a great place as we were overlooking some gardens and we had garden boxes lining a grass aisle.”
The wedding had lots of personal touches, the most special of them being the fact that Ashlea wore her grandmother’s wedding dress, which she had made for her own wedding in 1950. “My Nan (Muriel) made it in 1950 and wore it when she married my grandfather, Jack. They had a very happy marriage, but Grandpa died when my mum was only 15. Their relationship has always been up on a pedestal to us, so when I found Nan’s dress, it was the easiest decision in the world to wear it. Nan died just a few days after we found it, so it was nice to have a part of her with me on the day. I had a dressmaker line the dress and alter the neckline, but we didn’t change much (she did amazing work as it was made entirely from lace and was falling to bits in her hands). Joel and I had Nan & Grandpa’s wedding photo up on the wall at the reception too. I hope we have as happy as marriage as they did.”
Spring has very much sprung over here in the UK. And as the daffodils start to line streets and parkways, I usually forgo featuring any obviously winter weddings. After all, who want to be reminded of the cold and bleak mid-winter when it’s so glorious outside?! Well Meghann & Nathan’s wedding was different. They were married in the Colorado Mountains, where snow is a pretty regular feature. They also had a steampunk theme and only spent $2000 on the day, making it a wedding that I just knew you guys would flip out about. So, yet again, my self-imposed rules are being broken today. Oh well!
The wedding was held at Brush Creek Pavilion in Eagle, Colorado, and was planned by the mother of the bride, Jen, who runs her own wedding planning company, I Do Weddings. Jen did pretty much everything for this wedding, even so much as designing and making Meghann’s dress and headpiece herself! Nathan wore an outfit made up of things he already owned alongside a few items rented from a costume shop, and the bridesmaids and groomsmen were invited to wear anything they liked, as long as it fit them steampunk theme of course!
“Meg & Nathan decided to marry in a simple, local winter wedding in February and announced their plans to our friends and family shortly before Christmas”, wrote Jen, mother of the bride. “I wanted to find a way to help them host an event that really reflected their personalities. The steampunk theme allowed us to honor the love of drama that they share, and the result of the theme was a colorful, joy filled event.”
Simon & Amonné were married in Auckland, New Zealand in December. They chose Bethells Beach Cottages as their venue, with it’s stunning views and perfectly unassuming laid back vibe. “After looking at several venues on Waiheke Island, we found a beautiful venue. But the day before we went to formalise the booking it was snapped up”, explained the bride. “Heartbroken, we came home, I went to sulk and Simon jumped online and found this little slice of heaven. Not only was it breathtaking, but it also looked out over the beach where we had our first kiss. The venue became the canvas on which an unforgettable day was painted. The wildness of the Auckland West coast and the black sand beaches made for a memorable sunset and was our view from where we said ‘I do’. The venue had three cottages and we stayed on before and after along with close family.”
“Our theme was ‘casual’”, she continued. “As this was the second time around for both of us, we did not just have a wedding, we involved both our children in the ceremony and we became a real family. With several kids in our circle of friends we decided to make this day as family friendly as possible. We had no seating plan, no aisle to walk down, no cutting of the cake or place cards. We had our friends and family involved and mos of them played some role in the day’s proceedings (amazing flowers, wonderful celebrant, music, photographer). We had child minders, a bouncy castle and the ceremony started early in the day, which meant almost all our friends were able to be part of our day.”
Bernadette & Peter decided they wanted to host their wedding in their own back garden. Having built their own home from the ground up, having the celebration there was really important to them both. “We’re no spring chickens!” the bride laughed. “We had a slightly unusual wedding because we first built our home, then had three children and only then got married. Given this we did a few things different. We wanted a very relaxed and fun wedding and we had a music theme – everyone loves music!”
“We invited guests to wear fancy dress costumes for the party and we we had Lady Gaga, Madonna, the Blues Brothers, Scary Spice, Dolly Parton, Tina Turner and more than a few Amy Winehouse’s! This was so much fun. We had a photo booth which was an old cinema prop and we left out a Polaroid camera so guests could photograph themselves in various rock star poses.”
“After our portraits with our amazing photographers, Shutter + Lace, we came back and changed into our fancy dress costumes so we could join in on the fun. We had a music quiz, a best dressed award and a music themed pass the parcel… the night went by so fast!”
Sarah & Craig decided that the cold, sleet and snow of the UK just wanted going to cut it for their February wedding so they upped sticks and flew out to the Sri Lankan jungle instead! “Within those first few exciting days of engagement we came to the conclusion we would get married in Sri Lanka because we quite fancied going there, we could legally get married there and our parents/family/friends could backpack/5*resort/travel/package holiday there to their wishes”, explained the bride.
“We then picked the area we wanted to go to which was Unawatuna. It has a bit of a laid back, backpacker, beach-ey vibe and Galle, a historic fort with boutique hotels. I spent hours researching accommodation in the area until I found Illuketia, a colonial tea plantation house set in a tropical garden. We arranged to have the whole wedding there by email which could’ve been a bit risky! I did have a Bridezilla moment imagining we had booked an imaginary mozzie infested straw hut, but when we arrived to our wedding paradise it was all worth it.”
There’s been a lot of speculation around vintage weddings of late. In fact sometimes it feels like a debate that will never end. Are they over-done? Have they gone mainstream? Are we all bored of seeing the same ideas published here, there and everywhere? I’m not going to lie, vintage weddings usually aren’t my bag. I’m much more of a colourful, over-the-top and quirky wedding kinda gal. So why do I publish them at all?
It’s not about me. It never has been. Rock n Roll Bride has always been about sharing ‘the charm and unique nature of ordinary people’s extraordinary weddings.’ And as it’s always stated in my blog’s manifesto, “There is no ideal Rock n Roll Bride. What I love isn’t necessarily what floats your boat and what makes the weddings I feature so amazing is YOU!”
With the release of The Great Gatsby movie imminent, it’s only a matter of time until we see more and more flapper style weddings and styled shoots coming though… Of course they may not all be to my taste but when done well, with an authentic voice and a unique spin, a vintage wedding can be utterly beautiful. One that I’m honoured to share on these pages. John & JoJo’s wedding certainly falls into that category.
The August wedding was held at Cloverdale Chapel in Creswell, OR. They had both their ceremony and reception within the same grounds. The couple put the entire wedding together themselves from the bride’s antique shop dress (which cost just $60) to all the décor ideas.