Tag Archives: DIY

A Beautiful Handmade French Wedding: Sophie & Julien

Sophie & Julien’s family-central wedding was held in the Cote d’Or region of Burgandy, France, in a house build by Sophie’s Grandfather. The ceremony took place at the local town hall and the reception at the family home.

“The wedding was from start to finish a family affair,” Sophie explained. “The house was spruced up for the occasion with my Mother being the driving force behind all the sanding, painting, repairing etc.  Julien’s Mother came out to help as well as my Sisters, Cousins, Brother’s in Law etc!  My Sisters and I spent months looking up ideas and images on various blogs with all details being put to parents, friends etc.  The lanterns came from a friend of mine in Montreal who does decoration for cinema.  She had to create a wedding scene so I bought them off her and added them to the suitcases of various family members who were in Canada visiting to take to France.”

“Our biggest motivator was that the wedding would be fun, elegant relaxed as well,” the bride continued. “We wanted the atmosphere to be happy, friendly and warm – like our families!  Having the reception at my family home in Burgundy was very special…the house was built by my great, great Grandfather and so it is steeped in family memories.”

“The decoration was all hand-made and here are some of the things we did…My Sisters sewed metres and metres of bunting and collected bits of lace which they used to decorate the pear tree under which we got married. My Dad and Julien’s good friend put up all the lighting and lanterns, my close friend and my Brother’s in Law created wreaths and put up hundreds of fairy lights in the trees. We washed and wired loads of jam jars which were hung from trees as candle lanterns.”

“Julien and I designed the invitations and place cards which we had screen-printed in Montreal. Julien’s parents made endless trips to supermarkets, cheese shops, stations, DIY shops to get weird and wonderful provisions, we collected old doilies, lacy tablecloths which we set up on outside tables and chairs for general lounging and smoking. My Sister and her boyfriend helped us find some old frames in which we added some old maps as backing board to our hand-written table plans, they then hung them outside from the arbour we have in the garden – they looked amazing!”

“We bought over mini packets of almonds cooked in maple syrup as favours. My friend and my Step-Mum weeded the driveway, made countless cups of coffee and tea as well as litres of Kir made with local cassis. My Mum made about 12 quiches and other goodies for our next-day brunch and she also made tweaks to my wedding dress, made the vintage lace into a shawl, hand-knitted a alpaca shawl for when it got cold and generally was a superstar! I think I have gone on long enough, needless to say it was a massive group project and it all went without a flaw!”

Sophie’s dress was Custom Designed with Canadian Designer Véronique Miljkovitch. “I knew from the beginning that I wanted a dress that was different and initially I was sure I would find a vintage dress. I found my dress almost accidentally – my Mother was in Montreal visiting me for a couple of weeks and Julien managed to get her to take me to a local designer who is a friend of a friend.  The idea was that I would unknowingly pick out a dress for my birthday present…little did he know that on this surprise shopping trip, I ended up finding my wedding dress!”

“I tried on a dress that was beautiful and my Mother and I instantly could imagine it as a wedding dress.  We asked Véronique the designer whether she would be interested in custom-making it in off-white with a few tweaks here and there and she agreed!  From then on it was a series of secret visits, fabric hunts, fittings. Véronique’s dress was perfect and incidentally has a vintage feel to it!  I decided not to go with a veil but I completed the look with a piece of vintage lace around my shoulders (I found it in a second-hand shop with my Mother in Montreal during another visit a year later!) and shoes that I already had by Mine de Rien.  My beautiful jewellery was created by my sister Dominique with gold chain, non-dyed sapphires and quartz.”

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A Halloween, Day of the Dead & Bonfire Night Themed Wedding: Jennifer & Ian

Jennifer & Ian were married on Halloween so their day had a distinct theme to fit the time of year. “We wanted the wedding to have all the components of a ‘normal’ wedding but be personal to us,” the bride told me. “We both love Halloween, Day of the Dead and bonfire night and so decided to incorporate all three into a super-theme!”

“We wanted to make as much as we could ourselves, and to make the day as relaxed and enjoyable for everyone else.,” she continued. “We wanted a bonfire with jacket potatoes and toffee apples. The rest of the wedding was built up around that.”

“I made most of the decorations myself, but had some help from my friend Sharon and my Mum on the tissue paper Mexican picado’s. They were very time consuming to cut as the designs I chose were very intricate! But they were well worth the effort as they transformed a traditional bland-ish room into a Mexican festival!”

The couple booked Hannah Millard to photograph their wedding after seeing her featured on Rock n Roll Bride. “Hannah was absolutely amazing, she breezed in at the crack of Dawn and it was like I had known her for years,” Jennifer said. “After talking to her over emails I knew we would get on as we share the same ideas and principles on photography and weddings! What I didn’t expect was for Hannah to integrate with everyone else so easily, and to be a constant reassuring comfort to me throughout the day. She was so unobtrusive and took spectacular shots of our day.”

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A Summer-Fun Wedding: Katie & Chris

Katie & Chris’ cute Summer-themed wedding had a really ‘fun for all’ vibe – kids and big kids alike! I love their giant cupcake cake (made by a friend), the space hoppers (that I’m sure the adults spent more time on than the children…) and the pops of colour they injected throughout.

“Chris used to be in the army, The Parachute Regiment, and left recently,” Katie explained. “We have been through so much together, including his tour of Afghanistan, so we knew we wanted this wedding to be nothing but fun! I don’t know if our wedding was too different to many other weddings, but that’s because we never compared it to anybody else’s. It was our day, and everything was done how we wanted. One thing I learnt is that everyone has an opinion, and you can’t make them change your ideas.”

Katie wore a dress by Tobi Hannah (who she met at The Designer Vintage Bridal Show in Birmingham) and Vivienne Westwood shoes and jewellery. Her bridesmaid’s wore Vivien of Holloway dresses.

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An Anniversary Shoot in the ‘Up’ House: Lisa & Geoff

Lisa & Geoff wanted to do something different, fun and cute for their two year anniversary shoot. “Geoff and I got exclusive permission to do a photo shoot inside the Up House replica in Herriman, Utah,” Lisa wrote. “When we heard about it being built we got a crazy little idea to drive out from California and take photos there. We are huge Pixar fanatics and absolutely LOVE the movie Up. We watched it the day it came out and we were engaged at the time. So watching the ‘Married Life’ sequence at the beginning of the film really hit home (read: bawling in the theatre). It still makes me tear up every time I watch it.”

“With less than a month to plan the shoot and trip, we made many-a-trip to Goodwill (I love thrifting!) to get the perfect costumes. I made our very own Adventure Book from scratch and I made the yellow dress too (at 5:30 am the day we were supposed to leave!) We have admired Blue Lily Photography for some time now, so we were overjoyed that they could be in Utah and could be our photographers. Being wedding photographers ourselves (The Goodness), it was huge to get such an awesome couple to create these amazing photos.”

“We dressed in costumes, recreated scenes from the movie, had a picnic, the whole nine yards! It was AMAZING! So much fun. I even made one of the dresses I wore that day.”

Aww this just melts my heart. I love it so!

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A DIY Cornish Wedding: Angie & Jack

Angie & Jack’s Cornish Wedding was a wedding of three parts – with the ceremony at Devoran Parish Church, drinks and afternoon snacks at Devoran Village Quay and finally the main reception, with dinner and dancing, at Devoran Village Hall.

“We didn’t stick to the standard ‘wedding rules’ and just wanted our wedding to be fun and to show our personalities,” the bride told me. “We wanted everything to be as unique and as personal without spending a fortune.”

The couple DIY’ed as much of their wedding as they could including the guest labels (old jam jar tags decorated with japanese masking tape), the cake toppers, the bunting, the centrepieces, the table runners, the pew ends and the guest book.

“What we did spend on were important things to make the day enjoyable for our guests, like lots of booze, food and our band,” Angie continued. “It was an important venue because Devoran is the village that Jack grew up in – the church, the quay and the village hall are all minutes from each other and they all hold lots of sentimental value and memories. We didn’t want some grand, faceless venue that didn’t mean anything to us.”

“We had the best day ever and had lots of fun putting it all together – and our friends and family say they had a blast. The other amazing thing is that it was raining EVERYDAY all week in the lead up to the wedding but on the day it was glorious – as you can see from the pics – but from the time the night was over (close to midnight) and all throughout the following days it was raining again! So we were very very lucky and blessed with good weather on the day!”

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A Village Fete Meets Tattoo Parlour Wedding: Jess & David

Jess & David were married in All Saints Church in Kirby and they had their reception in the bride’s parent’s back garden. Jess wore a Candy Anthony Dress, Upper Street shoes (which she designed herself) and Vivienne Westwood jewellery. The lucky couple had Shell De Mar there to capture their day.

“We met at school and had been together 12 years when David proposed at sunrise on the beach in Mexico,” Jess told me. “Initially I’d been reluctant to get out of bed so early but something told me it might be worth it…and it was!”

“We always knew we wanted to get married in Pocklington, the small Yorkshire town where my parents live and where the school at which we met is. But finding a venue was a big problem as everything just felt too formal and wedding-y. In the end, it made perfect sense to do it in my parents garden as we had the space and freedom to do everything exactly as we wanted. We felt really strongly that if we were going to have all the people around us that we cared most about, we didn’t want to be standing on ceremony. That was one of the reasons we put our table in the middle of the room, because we didn’t want that us and them separation.”

“I knew immediately I wanted a 50’s style dress and as soon as I clapped eyes on Candy Anthony’s dresses it was love at first sight. The polka dots were just perfect and the red sash was brought everything together. I was worried that David would be disappointed that I hadn’t gone more traditional but the look on his face when I walked down the aisle told me I had nothing to worry about. The right shoes were proving extremely difficult to find and it was my Mum who eventually found Upper Street’s website. I designed exactly what I wanted and six weeks later they arrived and couldn’t have been more perfect.”

“My biggest thing throughout the planning was that I didn’t want to settle just because something was easier and I spent many hours trawling websites for ideas on how to do things,” the bride continued. “There were times, I think, when my Mum struggled with the idea that it wasn’t going to be a traditional, fluffy, sugar coated wedding, but she soon got what I had in mind and was amazing in helping everything come together. We couldn’t have done it without my Mum and Dad.”

“In the end the theme was a celebration of all things kitsch – or village fete meets Rock n Roll tattoo parlour as one of our guests described it. The biggest compliment at the end of the day was the number of people telling us how the whole wedding was totally ‘us’.”

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