Two brides, two gorgeous dresses and two sides of bridesmaids! Ria and Nicky wanted a wedding that screamed ‘them’! That meant they threw caution to the wind, and tradition out of the window. “I’m friends with Nicky’s sister so we met on a few social occasions, such as parties, concerts and completing a London to Brighton race”, began Ria. “However we finally developed a fancy to each other when a group of us went to Proms in the Park in 2011. I was technically ‘straight’ at the point I met Nicky, so she had no idea I liked her! Since that night we have been inseparable and the rest as they say is history.”
“We wanted our wedding to be relaxed, fun, entertaining and as non-wedding(ey) as possible”, she continued. “It sounds silly saying that, but just because we wanted to get married, didn’t mean we had to sign up to all the traditional and the usual expected activities at a wedding. We basically wanted a massive party with our family and friends where we could all have fun, relax and just enjoy the day.”
Both brides wore dresses; Ria in a long, white number and Nicky rocking a shorter, red one. “Nicky wanted to wear a non-traditional red wedding dress and I went more traditional”, Ria continued. “We also had 10 bridesmaids between us! Being two feminine ladies challenged how it would all work together, so we steered away from dressing everyone in just one colour. We felt it wouldn’t work and wasn’t really us. Instead, our bridesmaids all wore a vintage style swing dress in different colours. We didn’t want bouquets and so we all had fresh gerberas in our hair instead. Nicky carried a parasol that was her mum’s. She had it at her own wedding over 40 years ago!”
There are plenty of wedding inspiration shoots being featured on wedding blogs and in the magazines, but there’s a distinct lack of same sex models for my liking! Which is why when this shoot from Six Hearts Photography came in, I was thrilled!
“We just wanted to put together something groovy and pretty that we designed and were in full control of”, photographer Schellie told me. “The sunflowers come out in July for like two weeks, and they’re so beautiful and fleeting, we jumped at the chance to shoot among them.”
Sarah and Sibley’s wedding was held at The Barn at South Milton. They planned a day to celebrate them, the joining of their families and do have a damn good time! Spending just £7000, they saved money by wearing high street clobber (Sarah’s incredible sequinned dress from JS Collections at House of Fraser and Sibley’s snappy suit from Moss Bros) having a DIY cake, picking wild flowers and making all their own paper goods and decorations.
“Our theme was a rustic barn, country style wedding”, Sarah wrote. “I guess the difference from most traditional weddings was that we made most things ourselves with the help of one of our best friends. We also didn’t have any kids there. It meant there was no loud screaming through the ceremony or speeches, parents didn’t have a distraction and could let their hair down and enjoy themselves.”
Sadie and Marie were married at Calke Abbey Riding School, a National Trust venue in Derbyshire. They were the first same sex couple to marry here and they fell in love with it’s less than perfect appearance. It was the ideal setting for their alternative wedding.
“Our wedding day was perfectly imperfect”, explained the brides. “We were adamant we did not want a prefabricated, immaculate wedding and opted for a laid back, rough round the edges kind of day. We chose the amazing venue, not for the grand unstately home (yes it’s really called that!), but for the rustic, flaking paint and quirky riding school, owned by the National Trust. We also made history by being the first same sex couple to have a ceremony there! We visited the venue on several occasions and it was transformed every time. We wanted a blank canvas where we could truly make our mark.”
29th March 2014 was a good day in England, because same sex marriage finally became completely legal! While gay couples have been able to become civil partners for a few years now, it’s crazy to think that until two months ago they didn’t have the exact same rights as heterosexual couples.
So, with an amazing development in human rights taking place, hundreds of same sex couples rushed to say “I do” as soon as they could. One of the first was Phil and James, who were married at 8am in Brighton & Hove Town Hall.
“Our wedding was unique in the sense that it was the first LEGAL same-sex wedding at Brighton & Hove Town Hall and was attended by Madam Mayor Cllr Denise Cobb who presented us with the Brighton & Hove Crest in the form of cufflinks and a pin-badge”, they explained. “From the ceremony we went on drive around Brighton making as much noise and celebration as we could before pulling up at the front of Brighton Pier where we were greeted by a FLASHMOB doing their rendition of Kool & The Gang’s Celebration! And of course, we had to join in as did our guests and members of the public.”
Amanda and Briar were married at Ball’s Falls Conservation Area in the Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada. Their ceremony was in the local chapel and their reception at a nearby barn. Their whole wedding was bright and colourful! From their flowers to the bridesmaid’s dresses (all from David’s Bridal) and shoes, this was an awesomely bright love-fest!
“Before our engagement we would spend hours hiking in Balls Falls”, they explained. “During our hikes we would talk about the future and envision our wedding in the quaint chapel. The beauty of nature and the historical buildings provided a gorgeous backdrop to our day. We wanted simple beauty in our choice of venue. We complimented the subtle colours of nature with our vibrant colour palette. The wild flower bouquets created a stunning display against the colourful bridesmaids dresses, tying in with our natural theme.”