Josie & Nic wanted their wedding to be for them and what they wanted – screw traditions! The couple, who own a rockabilly store in Berkley, California decided to close the shop for the day (they hung up hand drawn signs to warn customers they were closed as they were getting married!) and get ready together in their own environment – something they had built up together.
The ceremony took place at Morcom Rose Garden in Piedmont and Josie looked stunning in her Stephanie James Couture dress. Once again throwing tradition out the window, the ceremony consisted of a small gathering of their very closest friends, who were each called up to the “alter” when they were ready in order to start the ceremony. Josie & Nic chose the lyrics of “The New Patron Saints and Angels” by AFI to be read in the ceremony instead of traditional vows.
After the ceremony, they both jumped into their 1957 Chevy and headed over to their reception at the Hotel California in San Francisco. Their friends and family even decorated their car for the ride! Finally, the whole vibe of the day was a DIY and personal one. The couple designed all of their invitations, flags and other all the reception decor, and the flowers were put together by Josie and her family.
Patti & Frank are just the epitome of Rock n Roll Bride! Whenever people ask me what my favourite type of weddings are, weddings like this one are what I describe – tattoos, DIY, short wedding dresses, fabulous bridesmaids and happy, smiling faces!
Patti wore an original 1950’s vintage dress, awesome shoes by Harajuku Lovers and feathers in hair. “I originally spent $2,000 on a custom made dress which I had designed myself,” the bride told me. “Well I had someone who specialized in wedding dresses make it (first problem) and I guess our vision was not the same and I didn’t like what she made at all! I went to Cambridge Antique market looking for some vintage brooches to jazz it up and the first thing I saw see when I turned the corner was this dress. I think it had a light shining on it with my name! It was meant to be and just a week before the wedding and it fit like a glove! Oh and the best part? It only cost me $150!”
Not wanting to completely ignore the original dress that she had spent so much time and money on, Patti asked her friend Kara to cut the custom made dress shorter. To this she added some black bows and voila! it became her after party dress!
“Jon & I met in New York City, live in LA, and had our wedding in Toronto – where he grew up and I went to grad school,” Tamar, the bride, began. “Our overall vision for the wedding was that it would be urban, comfortable, fun, and very “us”. We love music and vintage stuff, so we definitely had some of that style infused but there are so many other weddings out there that are more “vintage” than ours. We’re Rock ‘n Roll and unique because instead of trying to unnaturally contort ourselves and our wedding into a neat little category, we accepted the fact that we’re “all over the place” and went with it. That meant having some traditional elements – a chuppah, wedding party, sit-down dinner, and bouquet toss – with other details that had special meaning to us regardless on whether or not it conformed to a wedding norm.”
“If there was one thing I was adamant about, it was taking the subway to the wedding (I’m a transportation planner) and making it easy for our guests to our wedding using transit. So we picked a space right in the city that was only a couple of blocks from a busy subway station; even if it would be the only time in our lives that we “should” take a limo. Both Jon & I wore “flair” on our backpacks throughout high school and college so we designed some of our own for the wedding with the Toronto & NY skylines. There were video monitors throughout the venue, which are usually used for wedding slideshows. Feeling awkward about our faces being broadcast throughout the night, we instead screened Andy Warhol’s “Screen Tests”, which are beautiful and intriguing.”
Tamar wore a short-sleeved, tea-length number by Dolly Couture (“I’m a grade-A klutz so really wanted a dress I wouldn’t faceplant on while walking down the aisle and really wanted sleeves”) and super-comfy green Butter shoes.
“So, maybe our wedding description would be hot mess or mish-mosh of cultures/traditions/styles” concluded the bride. “but we loved the atmosphere, had a blast doing our DIY projects (like the fabric covered table photo frames), and we smile every time we see the candid shots taken by our lovely photographer Emma McIntyre. Our guests definitely were comfy and had fun… and most of them took the subway!”
Sarah & James’ 1950’s rockabilly wedding was inspired by Sarah’s Grandparents who got married on September 12th 1953. “We wanted to get married as close to this date as we possibly could, hence the choice of 11th September 2010,” Sarah told me. “My Grandparents celebrated their 57th Wedding anniversary the day after our wedding – the rose tattoo’s on my feet (by Sam Ricketts) have their names ‘Alice’ and ‘Mervyn’ in recognition of how special they are to me.”
“We were keen for the day to reflect our personalities,” continued the bride. “We chose a civil ceremony which was held at Pittville Pump Room, a Grade one listed building, as it is a big part of Cheltenham’s history, pumping the famous ‘spa water’ to the town (and it makes for some pretty awesome pictures!) There was a ‘swallow’ theme running throughout (as I have swallow tattoos on my stomach) – As James is a Graphic Designer, he designed all of the wedding stationary for us – from invites, to place settings. As wedding favours we decided on plectrums (which we ordered from the internet) as James is a guitarist, with the ‘swallow’ design and our names and the date on the back.”
“There was also a colour theme of red, black and white running throughout the day (as these are our favourite colours!) Rather than ‘table names’ we identified the tables with movie stars and singers from the era. From Marilyn Monroe, to Audrey Hepburn and Frank Sinatra.”
Sarah wore a ivory 1950’s style swing dress from Vivien of Holloway (her bridesmaid’s wore the same dresses in black or polkadots) and the new Vivienne Westwood Melissa shoes (eeek cherries!) Her hair was done in a rockabilly style, adorned with Diablo Jo’s handmade rockabilly accessories.
I loved Scott & Ashley’s wedding as soon as I saw it…and I loved it (and them!) even more once I got chatting to the bride and their photographer Jeremy Lawson about all the amazing little details of their day.
“Our inspiration came from our love of the vintage,” the bride began. “We listen to records at the house, shop for clothes at retro themed consignment stores, and stay glued to TCM. We sort of envisioned a party that looked like a party scene we saw years ago in the movie Mona Lisa Smile combined with the famous barefoot dancing scene from Big Fish in the town of Spectre. We wanted that easy, happy, homemade, and colorful party for our closest friends and family.”
Ashley wore two stunning dresses, the first a Goddess Gown by J Crew which she found for a steal on Ebay (seller paisleypetunia) and the second a GORGEOUS 1950’s vintage pink prom dress from landof100dresses on Etsy. Ashley chose the first dress for their first look and pre ceremony shoot as well and for dancing afterwards, “It was beautiful, simple, comfortable, and easy to dance in” she continued.
“We made the decision to see each other before the wedding to take pictures around our amazing city, but I still wanted the surprise element of the ceremony. My dress was a 1953 prom dress that came with the owner’s original filled out dance card from her senior prom. This dress made me giddy in a way I didn’t know was possible, as I’m almost strictly a jeans and T-Shirt kind of girl. My shoes were from Dillards, the jewellery served as my borrowed items from my sister (who wore them in her own wedding), and flower headband a combination of rosettes from Francesca’s and H&M.”
The couple got crafty and DIY’d their wedding completely. With a sister who runs a cake making business, it was a no -brainer to Ashley who would make their cakes, “I loved my cakes! I’m one of those lucky brides that has a sister with a cake business at home in Tennessee. She spent the week making six different flavored cakes, drove them up to Chicago, and finished the job in a tiny hotel kitchen the night before. She even made up a Tennessee Jack Daniels Chocolate Recipe to represent my home state and a Georgia Peach for Scott’s. She is amazing.”
Julie & Chris got married on a hot and sunny rooftop in Philadelphia city centre. They handed their guests colourful parasols to keep them cool which they got from their local Chinatown. Following their intimate ceremony they hired out the second floor of their favourite restaurant Noble which they decorated with DIY flower arrangements, sweet treats and vintage style postcards.
The bride wore Dolce & Gabbana and the Groom looks dapper in DKNY. “In general, we wanted to keep the wedding simple and memorable,” Julie explained. “Great food, plentiful booze, and our closest friends there to bear witness. We had thirty guests total.”
“We hired a fantastic guitar player to perform our favorite songs at the ceremony–I walked down the aisle to “I Summon You” by Spoon and afterward it was a great mix of White Stripes, Vampire Weekend, and Arcade Fire as we enjoyed a champagne toast. We had our friend and brother-in-law Richard ordained to perform the ceremony–he was fantastic. I decided against bridesmaids, but had my sisters read poems by Ogden Nash throughout the ceremony. The groom’s father held our rings.”
“The next morning, we attached our “Just Married” sign to our car and headed off to Lake Placid NY for a quick honeymoon. We had a beautiful time.”