Dani and Mark mat three years ago at Balham Bowls Club in south London. So when it came to choosing a venue for their October wedding, nowhere else could have been more perfect! “The night we met I was quite hungover and was out for a friend’s birthday, Mark was out for some drinks with his friend (and best man) Paul. Depending on who tells the story, I apparently gave Mark ‘the eye’ as he walked into the pub, which prompted him to start talking to me later in the evening, OR (my version) I don’t remember looking at Mark as he came in and wondered why he was staring at me all night. Either way, he bought me a rum and coke and we were inseparable ever since.”
“The idea behind our wedding was that we really just wanted a big party with all our friends. In a way it was easier knowing what we didn’t want (chair covers, fruit cake, pastel colours), which helped us find what we did want – lots of bright colours and for everyone to have a really good (boozy) time!”
“One of my biggest worries about the wedding was that I would just cry the whole way through the ceremony, not get any words out and generally look disgusting”, she said. “In the car on the way my bridesmaids Googled ‘techniques to stop crying’ and discovered that apparently if you recite song lyrics it can help. We ended up singing Bon Jovi ‘Living on a Prayer’ at the top of our voices all the way to the ceremony – I think the driver thought we were drunk! And I managed not to cry through the ceremony (mostly)! We were actually both quite surprised at how much we loved the ceremony part, even all the photos outside beautiful Wandsworth Town Hall. Walking into the reception to cheers from our friends and family was pretty amazing too. It was really overwhelming to see everyone in there!”
Thea and Cody both struggle with anxiety, so not wanting to be the centre of everyone’s attention, they decided to elope on their own. They had a small reception for their friends and family a month later.
“We knew we wanted our wedding to be small”, began the bride. “When we found out that we could have our ceremony at the House on the Rock, a location mentioned in one of our favourite books (American Gods by Neil Gaiman) and the site of our first vacation together, we knew it was the perfect spot.”
“We wanted our wedding to be a true reflection of who we are as individuals and as a couple. We focused on what we love about one another, and the promises that we knew we could keep. We also bucked the system a bit by only letting 12 other people in on our secret before the ceremony, and 9 of them were invited. We only invited our very closest friends and family, because we didn’t want to feel like we were there to impress or entertain anyone. I think what made our wedding unique was our dedication to making it ours. We only included the things that were important to us, and we ignored the rest.”
Maria and Graeme wanted their wedding to reflect what was most important to them – family and having fun. They also wanted their day to have minimal fuss and stress and planned the whole thing in just eight weeks!
“Although we got engaged on NYE 2011, and had a lot of ideas, they all fell by the wayside last year when my brother died suddenly”, Maria explained. “He would have played a very big role on our special day, and it was very hard coming to terms with him not being with us. However in August last year, we decided to just go for it. We saw the venue on August 17th, and were married there on October 18th!”
The wedding took place at The Tithe Barn at Symondsbury Estate. “We managed to do tons of DIY in that time”, she continued. “We made the button bouquets, cake, buttonholes, spray painted bottles for the flowers, place cards, table plan, order of the day, and music playlists. We had a lot of help from our very brilliant and talented friends too. I loved making my own bouquet and it also saved us money. Not only did it feel like a massive achievement, but it was lovely to carry something so special and unique. We collected buttons from friends and family (including some from my late brother) as well as lots of pink ones from eBay!”
Jana and Denis were married in 2006, just two months after meeting. With the bride being Brazilian and the groom American, there were lots of complications post-wedding. When it was all finally sorted out they travelled to Chile to renew their vows, just the two of them.
“Denis and I met in 2006″, began Jana. “We were both backpacking in Brazil and we ended up on the same bus going to a psy trance festival. Sixty-eight days later we were married in a simple ceremony and three days after that Denis had to return back to the States since his Brazilian visa was expiring. The next few years were extremely hard for us, as we were dealing with immigration issues and a custody battle over my daughter with her Brazilian father. More than a year later, when I was finally able to go to the United States, we just had an intimate dinner reception just to introduce me to his family and few friends. The custody battle was still ongoing and we could never plan anything, just waiting for the court process to decide the future of our family. Finally, seven years after all of this got resolved, we decided to go to Chile, travelling for the first time together as husband and wife, to renew our vows.”
“The renewal of vows was actually surprise to Denis from me and he only found out when we got to the desert!”, she continued. “In the beginning we were just planning a trip, but I knew that travelling to this special place, I could not let the opportunity pass of celebrating our love and confirming our vows in an intimate way. I knew that Denis would not be too enthusiastic about this idea if I planned a staged ceremony with a script. He is extremely introverted and hates to pose for pictures. Also, our budget was pretty tight, so I decided to follow my heart and let something evolve on its own while we are there.”
The inspiration for Jana’s outfit was ‘Patta Hoiri’, which means ‘Mother Earth’. ” I felt an extreme connection with the Mother Earth while I was in Chile”, she said. “When we were married seven years ago I wore black, so this time I wanted to wear white. I did not want be too colourful or glamorous, I wanted some way that I could blend myself with the desert. I painted my face with ‘Urucum’ which is the plant seed that Indians in Brazil use during ceremonies, and wore a custom made ‘Cocar’, a headpiece worn by indigenous tribes. I wanted to honour my ancestors and feel connected to the ancient tribe.”
Happy Monday you gorgeous creatures. Monday might not be your favourite day of the week, but it’s about to get a whole lot more epic with this completely perfect punk wedding! In fact this might just be one of the most amazing real weddings you’ll ever see! Tammie and Toby were married at New Farm Park in Brisbane.
The wedding was very much DIY, with the couple spending no more than $5000 on the whole thing. “We became friends through the East Brisbane punk scene and going to shows”, Tammie began. “He was the super talented guitarist of a rad band and I was the fangirl trying to get close to him because he always had a rider (free drinks at the bar for bands!) The scene is like a family and he was always there when I needed him. Plus he is a super babe so why wouldn’t I want to get close to him?! Then, after about 3 years, we got together. We now have a house, three little girls and run a business together.”
“When we started planning I didn’t know exactly what I wanted but thanks to the internet I had a super long list of stuff I didn’t!!” she continued. “We wrote our own vows and quite bit of the ceremony. We started off by recognising the traditional owners of the land and mentioned gay marriage rights in ceremony. Our celebrant was an ex-communicated priest, kicked out of the church for advocating gay marriage and going to a refugee protest. He was an all round rad dude!”
When TV presenter Layla Anna-Lee married Richard, they both knew they wanted to do something different. They wanted their wedding to feel like them, to be easygoing and fuss-free. They had their ceremony at Artington House and their reception was afternoon tea at home with just their closest friends and family.
“We’re not big party people, we like quiet quality time with friends so we had a small ceremony then high tea at our home”, explained Layla. “It was all a little last minute despite having six months between getting engaged and getting married. I had to fly to Brazil for six weeks for work and then when I returned we were just really chilled out about it all. We only really started planning three months before the date.”
“We knew the date we wanted, and we were super excited to get married but all we were interested in was the actual getting married bit. When we spoke about wanting to marry each other we were attracted to the beautiful promise and a future together, we never uttered the words ‘I want to have a meeting with a florist and check out venues with you!’ These things were just not on our minds at all. We both wanted something warm, modest and homely. We saw many lovely venues online, but we kept wanting to just have it at home. We only bought our house together very recently and we got engaged here – it feels so special.”