After waiting 16 years to be allowed to legally married, Lita and Carol were ready for one hell of a celebration! They wanted to use their wedding to celebrate them, but also love – in all forms.
“We waited so long to be allowed to legally marry!” began the girls. “So we were so excited to finally be able to do it. We love the island of Jura, off the coast of Scotland, and wanted a wedding at dawn on the beach. However our professionals and others were held up because of Hurricane Bertha, so we started in the afternoon rather than the morning, and compressed a full days worth of activities into half a day.”
“We wanted a beautiful rainy weather option for our ceremony which is why we hired the tipis from Highland Tipis, we ended up having the ceremony in them so we’re glad we did! They were very good and ensured that we were safe from the gusting winds.”
“In terms of décor, we had hand painted lots of jars and bottles and put these around with candles and flowers in”, they continued. “We had lots of rustic candle holders dotted around, as well as second-hand saris weaving around the tipi walls. We wanted to recreate an authentic ‘love is happening’ feel to both tipis. We are both nearly 60 years old and so we wanted to share the ‘all you need is love’ experience of the 60s and 70s with our guests, some of whom, were too young to have been there first time around!”
Clare and Stuart didn’t want a big wedding. In fact they wanted their wedding to be so small that they went to Belfast City Hall for their ceremony with just 10 witnesses! Still wanting an awesome celebration with their loved ones though, they held this colourful party the following day at Brookhall Barn in Lisburn.
Clare explained, “We knew what we didn’t want – no white dress, no bridesmaids, no church, no rings, no walking down the aisle, no giving away, no big ceremony, no speeches, no first dance, no hotel reception, no florist arrangements. None of that stuff was ‘us’. Once we found the right venue, somewhere where we could do our own thing and where some of our friends could stay, everything else fell into place.”
Lindsey and Ned were married in Tasmania, at the bride’s parent’s farm. overlooking the ocean. Their reception was at Stanley Town Hall. “Getting married on top of a hill overlooking the ocean (where the next landmass is South America!) and utilising whatever venue we could find locally was a pretty unique experience”, began the bride. “A weather proof reception venue was key to us as we can’t stand a flapping marquee on a windy, crappy night which is so often the case in Tassie. We were so lucky that the only place suitable was a recently restored, beautifully painted Art Deco hall! And it was only $800 to hire for four days!”
“We made/collected so many elements of the wedding ourselves without going overboard and getting stressed about it. I think the Pinterest generation are pressured to have hand made wedding elements and for people who may be not that way inclined already, they may feel forced to craft everything. It can really take the fun out of wedding planning. Luckily, I love making things and thrifting anyway but also feel like I got the balance right by not stressing about the little things.”
I’ve seen a lot of Day of the Dead themed weddings in my time, but hand on my heart, none have been as incredible as this one! From the bride’s black dress with hidden rainbow petticoat, to the extravagant and gorgeous DIY decorations and the holi powder war (!), this is a wedding I KNOW you’re all going to love.
“Between the two of us we share a few cultures – Indian, Afrikaans, Polish and good old everyday South African”, began Tash. “Mashing the cultures, and therefore the traditions that accompany the various cultures, with our own individual likes and dislikes, was inevitably the inspiration for our day.”
“A few eyebrows were raised when we shared our ideas with family and friends, but we stuck to our guns and created a day that reflected who we are as individuals. This to me was what made it ‘alternative’ (besides the black dress, unlimited vodka and skulls everywhere).”
The day was held at the Mckenzie farm in Lions River, South Africa. The ceremony was in the nearby woods and the reception was in the barn. “The thinking behind our wedding theme was that we got engaged in India, we both love colour and we both love to dress up”, she continued. “I love skulls and Neil dislikes anything fancy and elegant. I also love DIY and power tools! From that process evolved our theme: laid back, unpolished, colour explosion, Day of the Dead dress up barn party!”
Vicky and Ben chose a very unusual venue for their wedding, an old Victorian Railway station! Having somewhere so different meant that they could pretty much do what they wanted for their big day. They went all out adding personal, colourful touches.
“The inspiration for our wedding was colourful, fun, summer garden party, relaxed atmosphere, not too formal!” began Vicky. “I am a florist and I love colour and love working with the bold bright colours of flowers. Ben is a design engineer, so both being quite creative people we knew we wanted to style the wedding and make lots for it ourselves. We are silly people so wanted the day to be fun and keep our guests laughing at all times! Ben also likes to entertain, he is a juggler and dabbles in a bit of magic so that was an influence too, mainly in our stationery and our wedding cake which was chocolate brownies decorated like playing cards!”
“Our venue was quite unique, an old Victorian Railway station”, she continued. “We fell in love with it as it was so different and Val, the owner, kept the gardens looking beautiful! The different areas of the venue made it interesting for guests to explore. We wanted our wedding to feel like a summer garden party with lots going on. We told all our guests to dress colourful and there were some great outfits and load shirts on the day.”
Their wedding was always going to be colourful and fun, and Oliver and Helen found pulling their theme off relatively easy, despite having a smaller that average budget of £8000. They threw tradition out of the window and simply picked things they loved and could make themselves.
“Our wedding theme was all about colour”, explained the bride. “I spent lots of time searching through Pinterest and wedding blogs (in particular, Rock n Roll Bride!) but didn’t really want to narrow my ideas down. I was desperate not to narrow down my colour scheme despite being told I probably should. I’m glad I didn’t!”
“So we decided anything colourful would work. I was really excited about creating everything myself with the help of my amazingly creative mum, sister in laws and bridesmaids. I was very lucky to have them all on board!!”