I think by now, we’re all aware of my feelings about styled shoots in general. But rules are nothing if meant to be broken, and when I clapped eyes on this stunning tattooed couple and their quirky yet attainable wedding styling ideas, I couldn’t help but want to blog it – so shoot me!
“We’re not really big on ‘inspiration shoots’ but we got sick and tired of shooting stuff that everyone else wanted”, agrees photographer Lucy who runs her photography studio with partner Steven. “Being from the South, we have found it a huge challenge to get couples to think outside the box and just go for it.”
“It was important to us to stay true to ourselves and use real people who aren’t models but people who are engaged and really like each other! We met Maria & Chris through my husband. Maria is a salon owner and cuts his hair and Chris is a world renowned tattoo artist. They are both awesome people and awesome looking…..WINNING. They got engaged a while back and plan on just going to the court house so we thought this would be perfect for them. They get pictures out of the deal and we get models…”
This laid back couple met online and spent their first dates huddled on Laura’s sofa, watching movies and eating food that she’d cooked. So needless to say when it came to their wedding they wanted to keep it as low key as possible too. “We have always been such an easy couple, lots of love and not much hassle of going overboard with things”, Laura explained. “His proposal a year after we met was perfect. We were in the mall and he pulled me into a photo booth and he proposed while the photos were being taken inside. It was perfect!”
“Zack and I have wonderful families”, she continued. “His family is from Ohio, and mine from Florida, and without their support on our choice to marry alone I don’t think it would have gone so smoothly and stress-free as it did. We wanted to focus on us and our love rather than put together a big wedding. It all worked out perfectly for us. We love you family!”
The ceremony was held in front of Kehoe House in Columbia Square, Savannah, and afterwards they had a meal, just the two of them, at Olde Pink House. “They welcomed us and treated us like royalty!” Laura said. “We sat in huge leather chairs in front of a fireplace in the tavern as a piano was being played in the background!”
Caroline & Ben, who live in Shanghai, had a destination wedding in Verona, Italy. The bride’s father is from Northern Italy and so they wanted to have a wedding that reflected that heritage. “The idea of getting married close to my roots really appealed”, began the bride, “especially for the fact we could make a holiday out of it for our guests (and for ourselves!). Living abroad, we don’t get to see our friends and families as much as we would like, and this way we got to spend a few days with everyone. We had our ‘stag’ and ‘hen’ parties the night before for all our guests, and after the wedding a group of about 20 of us went up to the Dolomites for some skiing over New Year.”
“I originally thought that with the overseas wedding planning, I wouldn’t need to or want to worry about all the little details, but I had a very wise friend who knew I would care in the end… And I did care! The little details ended up being the things that we most enjoyed spending time over. I loved all the paper bits and pieces especially (and the aeroplanes escort cards made for good competition over dinner!)”
One of the most important thing to this couple was the photography and they booked the ever-fabulous Sassy of Assassynation Photography to shoot the day. “Photography was very important to us and Sassy’s eye and imagination really worked with what we wanted”, Caroline continued. “Her style was as far away from the soft focus and stilted shots that seemed to be preferred by the Italian photographers we could find. We’re lucky she fancied the trip over to Verona!”
I always get really excited to feature a super-budget wedding because I love to show you that, with a bit of clever engineering, a beautiful wedding doesn’t have to cost £20,000. Ruth & Steve spent just £700 on their day and it was perfect. They also planned the entire thing in just two months – sheesh, why can’t we all be such overachievers?!
This thrifty couple were very clever with how they spent the money that they did have to spend. Firstly the opted for an East London pub for the reception venue. Without extortionate rental rates, The Water Poet in Spitalfields was just the ticket. “The wedding took about two months to organise”, the bride began. “We booked the reception first, as I thought that would be the trickiest part of the operation. Then we booked our ceremony at Islington Town Hall and gave our Notice of Intent to Marry about four weeks before the ceremony.”
“Choosing a reception venue was probably the most challenging part of the wedding! I wasn’t too particular, but knew that I didn’t have the budget to hire a private venue. I started searching around for pubs with free room hire – most places could only reserve a couple tables at most. As the ceremony took place on a Friday, I knew most pubs would be rammed, which would have been too much for our parents to handle! We decided on holding the reception at The Water Poet in Spitalfields. It wasn’t too far from Islington Town Hall and they had a private room where we could set up the food, cake and decorations. My hens and I handmade all the paper flowers on the tables from a fab tutorial that I found on Rock n Roll Bride! The best thing about the room was its own sound-system – we plugged in our iPhone with our wedding playlist and just let it run all night!”
Ruth wore a dress from Topshop, and her shoes, also Topshop were an eBay bargain at just £10. Her headpiece was, amazingly, from Primark and her jewellery was a gift from Steve’s sister. The cake and flowers were both DIY efforts from helpful friends and family, the venue provided a buffet spread and they forgoed a DJ for a Spotify playlist.
Sana & Derek were married on an island. Artscape Gibraltar Point is located in the former Toronto Island Public and offers 35,000 square feet of affordable retreat space, artist studios and accommodations for artists and creative thinkers. The tranquil and idyllic setting was perfect for their intimate and artistic wedding. The day started with the entire wedding party taking the ferry over to the island together. “We knew immediately that we wanted to hold the wedding on the island – it’s the perfect escape from Toronto, and a place where we have spent countless summer days swimming, biking and hanging out on the beach,” wrote Sana. “Artscape had the perfect laid-back and nostalgic feeling that we wanted in a venue, and they even let us have a bonfire outside on the beach!”
Sana opted for an untraditional bridal look, choosing to wear a blue dress by Betsey Johnson and Dr Martens, while Derek wore a tartan kilt. “We wanted the wedding to reflect who we are as couple, and the things that we love to do”, the bride continued. “Almost everything was handmade or vintage, and there were tons of things that came straight from our home. Derek’s parents picked all the flowers from a local wildflower farm and we used craft beer bottles that we’ve collected over the past couple of years as vases. The pine cones in the centre pieces were gathered on a camping trip and the crystals and little vintage animals were from our shelves at home.”
Erik & Brooke travelled from California to get married by Elvis at a wedding chapel in downtown Las Vegas (not photographed). After they sealed the deal, wedding photographer Laura of Top Banana Photography arrived to document a post-ceremony photo adventure. They firstly had shots taken around the downtown area, followed by Boulder City and finally the Hoover Dam.
“The type of couple that decides to get married in a wedding chapel is generally carefree and fun-loving; Brooke & Erik fit the bill perfectly”. wrote Laura. “I almost shrieked with excitement when I found out they had brought along Harold, the garden gnome from their yard. They also incorporated colorful sunglasses and bubbles to blow as additional props. We had decided on a few locations beforehand, but ultimately, we let serendipity be our guide.”