Heather and Adam had their wedding at Race and Religious, a old house in New Orleans which is now rented out as a vacation house and quirky event space. Living quite far away from all their family, the wedding was always going to be a semi-destination wedding, and they picked New Orleans because they both just love it so much!
“During the planning process the location of the wedding was the most troublesome since we had to account for both of our families that are scattered all over the country”, explained the bride. “I have always loved New Orleans. For me, it’s a place that can feel so familiar even if you’re not from there. It’s close enough for a lot of our guests to drive to, which was SUPER helpful when carting all of our DIY items, and it’s almost impossible not to have the time of your life in that city.”
“To keep it intimate and laid back we decided to have the wedding and reception in a vacation rental. We wanted a place our guests could feel at home and let loose in. While searching for vacation rentals I stumbled across Race and Religious. One look at this place and you feel the mystery and whimsy the property embodies. To borrow from Race and Religious, the home ‘is a love song to New Orleans’. And at the risk of sounding extremely sappy that’s exactly what we wanted! We wanted our wedding to be a love song to each other, to our loved ones, and to the city we are forever connected to. ”
John and Elizabeth were married at home in May. They married quickly after John proposed, planning their wedding for just four months. They wanted the day to be stress-free for everyone involved. They kept things simple and DIYed where they could.
“The main goal of the wedding was to keep things low-key and easy for everyone involved”, began the groom. “Quick ceremony, no speeches, no toasts, and one dance (before the ceremony, actually). We didn’t want an over-the-top vibe and were set on the idea of it being backyard-style. To us, a venue would take away from the feeling of love. We also had donuts instead of a wedding cake! Sooo much cheaper and a lot more fun.”
“A lot of the wedding was DIY”, he continued. “We got married on my drum riser, which I assembled myself. We also made our own mixed-drink gallon pours of sangria, margaritas, and Moscow Mules. Every decorative item was purchased ourselves and set up by ourselves and our wedding planners (two of Elizabeth’s friends). We bought all the alcohol and gave our local bartender up the street the job of serving. We also did all the bookings and reservations for the hotels, rehearsal dinners, and day-after brunch. All simple stuff, really: keeping things small and hiring people we knew and trusted was how we maintained our vision.”
Bianca and Richard’s wedding was held on Big Bay Beach in Cape Town. This was very definitely a family affair with the bride’s mother making the stationery and helping Bianca fold all those paper origami flowers, and both her parents helping with the catering. Most of the reception décor was borrowed from people they knew or bought cheaply in China Town.
“We wanted our wedding to be a representation of us not just a mere traditional wedding”, the bride wrote. “Firstly we wanted food we loved and enough of it for people to go back for seconds. We also wanted to make it as easy breezy as we could, so we had no formal sit down dinner and we wanted the guests to get involved and make something they enjoyed. My parents made the starters of pate, cheese and crackers, and Riaan’s Foods made us an incredible DIY burger station with all the toppings you could wish for accompanied by potato salad and coleslaw. They also did dessert ice cream sundaes, doughnuts and a chocolate fountain with marshmallows!”
Courtney and Nick wanted a day that didn’t break the bank. They managed to keep the costs down by shopping in charity shops, accepting help from family and friends and DIYing a lot! They put the flowers together themselves, had a playlist instead of a band or DJ and made their own stationery. Both of their outfits were “lucky finds on the internet”. The designers didn’t matter to them, only that they liked what they wore. The bridesmaids had dresses from eBay.
“Our wedding was loosely themed around ‘all you need is love’, but we didn’t really stick to a genre”, explained the bride. “We drew inspiration from vintage, cottagey garden vibe which you can see in the table settings and all the bunting, as well as the lawn games that included a super fun giant Jenga set. The ceremony was set in a beautiful pine forest, with hay bales as seating giving a forest fairy feel.”
“There were loads of different places we got inspiration from, but most importantly we wanted to make sure that it reflected us as a couple. We wanted a day filled with fun that celebrate our LOVE. The Beatles played a major part, as this is one of our favourite bands, and love of music is one of the first things that brought us together.”
Wearing a second hand dress, black velvet Dr Marten boots and a homemade flower crown in her lilac hair, Laura married Colin at Lovekyn Chapel in Kingston Upon Thames. The reception was held at the London Museum of Water and Steam, which they decorated themselves with the help of their families. Nearly all the flowers were grown in Laura’s Mum’s front garden and were arranged the morning of the wedding.
“Our inspiration was London, spring-time and marjarelle blue from gardens in Morocco, where Colin proposed”, began Laura. “We both love history and I work as a carpenter/welder so the industrial past of the museum and the still-working women’s forge in the grounds suited us perfectly. I like things juxtaposed so I used lots of spring flowers, candles and white linen to add femininity.”
Emily and Bernard were married at Doe Bay Resort on Orcas Island in Washington. They wanted an intimate, special day and didn’t want to spend a lot of cash so they also thrifed wherever they could. Emily’s dress was by Free People, her shoes were from Goodwill and her jewellery was all vintage. Bernard’s outfit was also second-hand and all the flowers were picked from a nearby wood!
“We wanted the ceremony to reflect our natural and spiritual beliefs”, wrote the bride. “We made an alter of little things that are special to us: our dog’s collar (who is no longer with us), dried rose buds from my Grandmother’s youth, and a photo of us and our daughter. I also made all the flower arrangements using plants and flowers from the area.”