Tag Archives: paper flowers

A DIY Beach Wedding in Cornwall: Sarah & Tzevai

Sarah & Tzevai chose to marry in Cornwall as it’s where the bride grew up. Their wedding was a chilled, beachy, DIY wedding with yellow touches throughout.

“We knew from the start that we didn’t want a ‘traditional’ wedding”, explained Sarah. “Neither of us are religious in the slightest so a church wedding didn’t appeal. Most of the venues in Falmouth are hotels or a really expensive castle, but as soon as we saw the Maritime Museum we knew that it was the one for us. My shoes were yellow, my dress was short, Tzevai didn’t even wear a full suit! Everything about it was casual, fun, and very, very us.”

“Our main thought that was that our wedding would be an amazing day, but that it was just a day and that we really wanted to concentrate on having a happy marriage, which we seem to be managing so far! We picked the traditions that we wanted and left out the ones that didn’t feel like they’d represent us very well.”

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An Eclectic, ‘Junk Shop’ Inspired Wedding: Penny & Martin

Being wedding photographers themselves, Penny & Martin wanted to have a wedding that was completely personal to them. With an intimate ceremony in the Scottish highlands and a quirky reception in a Brighton coffee shop, they achieve this in spades!

They had always wanted to get married outside and as this is currently still not legal in England they traveled all the way from Brighton to Scotland for their intimate (just the two of them!) ceremony at Kingairloch Highland Estate. “We wanted to be married somewhere beautiful, dramatic and remote – somewhere that was just ours!” Penny told me. “We got some recommendations from a friend who knows the highlands well, and fell in love with Kingairloch when we saw the photos. We hadn’t visited the estate beforehand, so we spent our first day at the cottage exploring its stunning surroundings, and found the perfect little spot for our ceremony.”

“We wanted to have an outdoor ceremony which isn’t legal in England. We had considered doing the legal bit in our jeans the day before putting on the main ceremony for our friends and family, perhaps in the woods, but we were uncomfortable with the idea of already being married. Scotland (and most of the rest of the world) is more relaxed on their marriage laws so we would be able to have a legally recognised, humanist ceremony wherever we liked… and well, the Scottish highlands are stunning! We were really concerned that our nerves would overpower all other emotions on the day if we were to stand up in front of an audience, so we made the decision to have our little ceremony all to ourselves.”

For the photographs they set up their own cameras to photograph the ceremony on a timer. “We just loved the idea of having our own little photo project and actually the photographs mean so much more knowing that we took them ourselves!” Penny continued. “Martin was super-clever in how he organised all the cameras on tripods hiding in every available patch of long grass, set to take photos every second during the ceremony and every few seconds during the ‘couple shots’! We have loads of pics of Martin running into the frame, bounding over rocks and streams!” They even shot a video (which neither of them had ever done before!) themselves which they then played to their guests at the reception. You can watch it here. “It was so wonderful to share the wedding video with our friends and family at the reception, watching their reactions- laughter and tears, all of which we would have missed had we been at the front worrying about getting our lines right!”

On returning to Brighton, the couple wanted a big party to celebrate with their friends and family. They chose the quirky Marwood Coffee Shop for its relaxed atmosphere. “We really didn’t want anything formal and we wanted it to be memorably quirky! The Marwood with their extensive collection of awesome tat combined with skip-dived furniture and peeling walls was perfect! Plus it isn’t actually a designated wedding venue so it was unique to us. Most importantly, they serve kick arse coffee and life changing cake!”

The venue didn’t need much decorating but the couple added a few DIY elements to personalise the space. These included paper flowers, a Choccywoccydoodah cake and twinkly light fabric garlands made from strips of reclaimed fabric (which they’d also brought to Scotland with them and tied it to a tree for their ceremony backdrop!)

“We also pegged little ‘wishes’ on ribbons tied to embroidery hoops and hung from the ceiling,” the bride explained. “On one side they read ‘It is usually customary for the guests to grant wishes for the bride and groom – we are turning that on it’s head! Pick a wish and keep it safe’ and the other had little wishes such as ‘find a pot of gold’, ‘find someone who makes your toes curl’ and ‘be visited by the stork’!”

Just like the venue, Penny wanted her wedding dress to be unique and to scream ‘her’. She found her perfect designer, Armour sans Anguish, on etsy. “I wanted something that was mine, a one off, designed for just me! I was gathering inspiration on etsy and toying with the idea of designing my own, when I came across the wonderfully talented Tawny from Armour sans Anguish who uses reclaimed fabric (girl after my own heart) to create one-of-a-kind garments to order. It was a bit of a risk ordering a dress for a designer in California without having any fittings or even seeing the colour of the fabrics in person (photos can be rather deceptive)! However it really paid off. A few tweaks from a local seamstress and it was just perfect!”

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A Movie, CMYK & Zombie Themed Wedding: Elizabeth & Steve

As keen movie fans, the theme for Elizabeth & Steve’s wedding was easy to choose, especially when they realised they could have their ceremony at the amazing Tropic Cinema in Key West, Florida.

“When we got engaged, we knew we wanted the whole day to be a big fun celebration, and our first thought for a venue was Tropic Cinema,” Elizabeth explained. “It’s an amazing volunteer run theater in Old Town Key West, and we are huge movie buffs. We even had our 2nd date there. When we contacted them, they were ecstatic to be a part of our big day as they had never hosted a wedding there before.”

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Their brightly coloured scheme also suited the venue perfectly. “Instead of fighting the existing color scheme, I ran with it and used the CMYK theme in all our stationery and decor,” the bride continued. “Lori, the event manager at the Tropic was floored when she saw that we used their colors. Plus, you can’t really have a better setting for a colorful wedding than Key West!”

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“Our wedding had a definite movie theme with an island twist, but overall, we just wanted it really fun and playful. We had to throw some zombies in there somewhere of course too, as we’re huge zombie dorks. Also everybody kept asking us about the Domo cake toppers. Steve won me a Domo plush at Universal’s Islands of Adventure right after we got engaged, and he quickly became our mascot…. I bought the figurines from an online comic store and made all the little accesories out of polymer clay. Who knew they would be such a hit!?”

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The couple put their own stamp on their day by DIYing as much as they could. Elizabeth found the tutorial for the paper roses on youtube and spent 10 months in the run up to the wedding hand making them all. That’s dedication for you!

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A Vintage Themed South African Wedding ‘With a Twist': Zigi & Warren

Oh South Africa you do have some beautiful light…and how lucky are Zigi & Warren to have had Shanna Jones Photography to capture it so magically?

“We wanted a different wedding that represented our style,” Zigi told me. “Something that was unique to us as a couple. Warren is into Cars/Bikes & Fashion. I am into Food/Art/design…and unfortunately cars too. We decided to do a Road trip to our destination (this is something we do often & is actually part of our lives). The plan was to do it over 4 days & 3 nights to ensure we really don’t miss anything, but also get the time to spend with the various groups of people. The plan was that the entire group would get to know each other by being in the same town for 3 nights. This would mean on the wedding night we can just hang!! Quite a few of our friends are muscle car collectors – so about 10 cars drove up (where others brought their off-road bikes to go into the mountains).”

Zigi looked stunning in her black and ivory dress, made of a collection of items that she put together herself. She explained, “I have always been a lover of vintage clothing & knew it should be a combination of old & new with a hint of black. I never imagined myself getting married in an all white dress; so decided to add a lot of black. My skirt was a 1930’s wedding dress (cut up to only be a heavy satin skirt) from the Cats Meow; my black velvet corset was made by my friend Cathy and my neck piece was an incredible find and really made my outfit. Barbara from the Cats Meow showed it to me on her camera & I was immediately sold. It was her private piece that she sent to London to be evaluated. It is a black 1880’s Victorian neck piece. My headpiece was made of net from dress makers collection, a diamante cameo and a blue hair piece for my ‘something blue’. Finally I wore gloves which were a gift from my friend, Maria.”

The inspiration for Warren’s outfit was “old English industrial era meets Clock Work Orange meets Oliver Twist meets Sherlock Holmes.” He wore an English tuxedo with single button long tail, a shirt from a second hand thrift store in Amsterdam and a Bailey Bowler Hat from the USA. His cane was made from R1 Rifle bullet shells and was borrowed from a friend.

“The theme of our wedding was ‘ with a twist’ and our guests all got involved in it,” continued the bride. ” The twist could be anything you like to add to your style – be it shorts with a jacket or a head piece….or red nails if that is daring to you? So each bridesmaid and groomsmen had their own outfit on…with a slight twist. The only critera the bridesmaids were given was to wear black and white and possibly vintage clothes.”

“It is also incredibly hot in Matjiesfontein in summer; which means that no flowers will last a day, especially if the table is outside. So we decided on paper flowers. We also didn’t want a cake, instead we decided on lindt chocolate shot glasses from Lindt with Amarula cream/fudge….a candy floss machine with candy floss & two ginger bread men right at the end.”

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An Origami Wedding: Roxy & Tanner

“Our theme was nature and DIY, paper and origami,” newlywed Roxy wrote. “Being a designer, it was important to me that we personalize our wedding and that we showcase our creativity. It was an opportunity to get crafty with friends and to add a more personal touch to our wedding décor.”

Roxy & Tanner went with the bride’s  favourite colour combo for their wedding theme – purple and green. They also handcrafted most of the decorations including making all the paper flowers, pomanders, origami cranes, manzanita and willow branch centre pieces, stained glass mason jars and the guestbook. “I’ve always loved origami as an art form since I was a child and it holds sentimental value as it was my Father who first taught me how to fold a paper crane,” Roxy continued. “Origami cranes are also perfect for weddings asthey symbolize love, peace, longevity and patience.”

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“Under The Boardwalk” – Aimee & James’ DIY, 1950’s Carnival Wedding

Aimee & James were married on The Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, Ca. The day was a 1950′s inspired vintage one with a carnival vibe. The bride wore a custom made dress inspired by Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face and amazing blue shoes by Moda in Pelle. The couple were engaged in Paris. James proposed on new years and the stroke of midnight.

“We wanted to have a 1950’s vintage carnival theme wedding because we were having it at the Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, Ca. Due to the rich history of the location, we were not short on ideas for how we would bring the nostalgia of the times through. We wanted to almost transport our guests back to a time when family values and marriage were really celebrated. For me the idea of marriage is an old-fashioned concept, but one that should be pursued if you find someone that makes your heart sing.”

“The entire wedding was DIY,” explained the bride. “Most notably were the carnival games. What would a 50’s carnival be without games? One of the groomsmen was very generous with his time and volunteered to make the carnival games as a gift to us. We had a hat toss, bottle toss, beanbag toss, ping-pong toss, and a photo wall. The beanbag toss and photo wall were probably the most involved games with regards to execution.”


“The photo wall was a freestanding wall with 3 holes of various sizes cut out and lined with frames. Photos from the bride and groom’s sibling’s, parent’s, and grandparent’s weddings were framed and placed on the wall. A photographer friend of ours took professional photos of our guests and let’s just says that it was a good thing this booth was set up next to the bar.”

“The flowers were a big deal for me. I did not understand why flowers could be $3000 – $5000,” she continued. “That would have been a 3rd of my budget. I was looking through my wedding porn and I came across an article in Martha Stewart Weddings, which is by far my favorite wedding magazine, where the bride’s flowers were made out of paper butterflies. I loved the idea! Butterflies didn’t make sense for me, but it opened my mind up to the idea of other possibilities. I liked the idea of paper flowers, so I started looking for different patterns. The ones I settled with were crepe paper roses and tissue paper flowers for the bridal bouquets. I used pipe cleaner for the stems and covered them in flower tape.”

“Then I had the idea to have the jewellery flowers when I was at the groom’s parents’ house. His mother makes handmade jewellery out of jewelry she finds in stores and cannibalizes it to make it unique. She has tons of left over pieces that are too large to use in her creations, so I got the idea to have her make flowers out of them. She really got creative by gluing them in tiers and adding crystal accents. We then took wire and glued them to the wire to make the stems and covered them with flower tape.”

“Our centerpieces were also different. They were handmade paper flower pomanders by the bride, groom, wedding party, and family.

We put them on top of acrylic candelabras lit with LEDs. We used one type of flower to make it easy (tissue paper flower) and made hundreds of them every day for 4 months. I am still finding slivers of red tissue paper in my living room. I had the idea for acrylic candelabras but could not afford them. Then it occurred to me that my friend works in plastics and I asked if he could do it, so he designed it for me to be in a baroque style with a slot for an LED tap light at the base to light it up.”

“The one thing we take from this whole experience was that the elements that really made it different were the most important to us and ultimately what we received the most nay-saying about leading up to the wedding were things we received the most complements on afterward,” Aimee concluded. “People would ask me about elements of the wedding like my shoes and I would tell them they were going to be a bright blue and people would kind of look at me with this odd stare and say, “huh”. Then when the photos went out the one thing that everyone commented on was how beautiful the shoes were.”

“When we started talking about paper flowers people didn’t really get it. I think a lot of people didn’t think we knew what we were doing. To be fair, we didn’t always know what we were doing, but we knew that it was going to be amazing and it was. We have been told that our wedding was the best wedding that some guests had ever been to and is a benchmark for all future weddings in our community of friends and family.”

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