Rachel & Nicky were married at the super swanky Andaz Hotel in London. The bride read Rock n Roll Bride throughout her planning and I’m oh-so-excited to see some of my favourite touches throughout this wedding (that cake? effing awesome!)
“Nic and I have been immersed in music since we were young, we have both grown up listening to punk and hardcore and a massive spattering of Bruce Springsteen!” the bride told me. “We wanted to make sure that our day really represented this. From invitations that featured Springteen lyrics, tables named after Springsteen songs from Born to Run to Badlands. I wanted to make sure that the day was a total celebration and that everyone was smiling all the way through. I walked down the aisle to ‘Bring Me Sunshine’ sung by Morecambe and Wise, just stopping short of doing the walk/dance that goes with it, which raised a laugh out of everyone attending and we left the ceremony to Springsteens ‘Two Hearts’.”
“Our cake from Choccywoccydoodah wasn’t the most traditional of cakes but it really represented our ‘dark side’! With a huge chocolate skull on the top and the tattooed ’till death do us part’ chocolate heart on the front, stunning and yummy. We always knew that if we got married that we would want to do it in Central London, we could never see the point of heading out to castles in the countryside as this had nothing at all to do with our lives. I have always found the City and financial district to be the most beautiful part of London, the incredible old stone buildings sitting between the sharp angles of glass and steel. I knew from the start that The Andaz was the place for us, I had dreamed of getting married here and having the reception and party in the old Masonic Temple that formed part of the hotel. We kept the temple a surprise and led people in there for the party, everyone was so shocked that there was room this beautiful tucked away. We partied away the night amongst the marble and gilt to classic rock mixed with a spot of punk, even our families danced along to Cock Sparrer’s classic ‘We’re coming back’! The whole day was our version of punk luxe.”
Isobel & Dave’s incredible vintage-inspired budget wedding gives me butterflies! I am so excited about sharing all the beautiful personal touches that they put into their day. The whole wedding is a testament to the fact that you don’t need to spend a fortune to have your perfect wedding.
“The two things we had in our heads from the start were; that we didn’t have a very big budget and that we wanted our wedding to reflect us,” Isobel told me. “We started by approaching it as a really big party where we’d just happen to get married. The important things for us were that our favourite people were there, our favourite music was playing, and everyone would have fun! We aren’t particularly conventional and there was never any question of following rules or doing things because we ‘should’. I didn’t buy a single bridal magazine or visit any bridal shops during the whole process!”
“Rock n Roll Bride and DIY Bride were my only ‘go to’ blogs for inspiration and ideas! We just did things because we wanted to (if we could afford it)! With the little touches – the badges, the teapots as vases, teacups full of sweets, the birdcage for cards and messages, the photo booth (definitely a Rock n Roll Bride idea-steal!), and the bunting – I think we created a wedding that was fun, unique, and best of all, exactly what we’d imagined.”
The bride wore a dress that she had made from a vintage Vogue pattern. She was keen to wear something that was ‘her’ and something that she felt comfortable and beautiful in. “My dress was ade by a friend of a friend from an old Vogue pattern I found on the Internet,” she continued. “I wanted long-sleeves as I assumed (wrongly) it would be cold in April and I wanted to cover my arms! I also wanted a dress that was ballerina length to show off my gorgeous shoes! The cream lace and nude lining it was made from were from Victoria Market in Nottingham. I chose lace because I wanted it to look like a wedding dress (you only get to do this once, right?!) but mostly because I love it. The woman who made the dress added the bow and the buttons on the sleeves, which I think were really good calls and one of the many reasons why I’m glad I didn’t attempt to make the dress myself.”
The DIY theme continued through out the wedding. The bride’s Mum made her birdcage veil and her bouquet from faux flowers (from Hobbycraft.) They also bought the majority of their decor ‘things’ that they weren’t able to make themselves from Etsy and eBay, including the invitations, the birdcages, the lanterns, the napkins and the Lego cake topper.
My favourite detail has got to be the bunting. When they sent out the invitations they included a template for a piece of bunting and asked their guests to send them one made from any material they wanted. “Lots of people did and we got some lovely and very creative pieces (metres of it in some cases!) which we put together and used to decorate the reception venue. I think this really added to cosy, handmade feel of the reception and reflected what we wanted the wedding to be – a celebration with our friends and family.”
“I read something on a wedding blog during my planning, which I clinged onto for my own sanity,” bride Jenni wrote, “It said not to worry about decorations etc matching, if you like what you have, in the end it will all go together. This was my mantra for our wedding and it worked. We didn’t have a theme and I didn’t really have a plan or a colour scheme. I operated like a magpie, picking up inspiration where I found it and with the help of my husband and our friends it worked for us!”
Jenni & Neil’s wedding reception was held at Surrey Docks City Farm, London. This venue also really helped to set the style of their day. “The venue had never been used for weddings before and provided an empty shell, so the tables, chairs and all decorations needed to be sourced and made by us,” Jenni continued. “I spent months reading wedding blogs and started liking, starring and sharing posts I liked on google reader. I also found inspiration on craft blogs and DIY websites which indulged my love of interior decoration.”
The bride made all the bunting, table runners, napkins on a vintage (i.e. non-electric) Singer sewing machine. She also made and decorated the cakes, seating plan, bouquets & pinholes herself. The groom, best man and best woman decorated the farm venue the morning of the wedding. The bride and groom are originally from East Anglia & Birmingham (respectively) so they sourced beers and wines which were local to where they grew up and served them in pink tub-trugs full of ice.
Dragonfly Dress Design is an independent Glasgow-based dress studio, specialising in vintage wedding dresses and bespoke bridalwear. This shoot was set up to promote some of their latest vintage wedding dresses. “We take a different approach to weddings,” shop owner Lisa told me.
“You won’t find any champagne flutes, harassed shop assistants or queues for the changing room here. Instead, we’ll help you get the dress you really want, either by customising one of our unique vintage pieces, or creating it for you from scratch. We believe that every woman should have the wedding dress of her dreams, no matter how large or small her budget.Our vintage wedding dresses range in price from £195 – £575.”
Stephanie & Kevin were married at Alveston Manor, Stratford upon Avon. The day started with an intimate ceremony and reception for just 20 guests. The couple then had a massive evening party with 200 people. “Only having 20 guests in the day we wanted it to be relaxed and just about the family and us the way we wanted to do it, then 200 guests in the evening to really party,” the bride told me. “We did it our way and had great fun.”
Stephanie wore a dress which she had custom made by Stella Liliana, shoes from New Look and a veil from eBay, which she cut short herself. Her idea for her bridesmaid was for her outfit to be similar in style to her own, but not being able to find what she wanted on the high street, she took to making something herself. “I wanted my one bridesmaid my younger sister to look very similar to myself but we could not find a dress that matched so I brought a black bodice from h&m and two 1950’s style Rock n Roll underskirts which I sewed together and trimmed in length to create the skirt adding satin material around the waist to finish. Their shoes were the same as mine but in black, also from New Look. ”
Hannah Millard is a budding wedding photographer from Derbyshire, UK, and in order to shoot the kinds of weddings she wants to (ie yours!) she would like to offer the readers of Rock n Roll Bride the chance for free wedding photography! Just to make this clear, this is not a competition. Hannah is super keen to shoot more alternative and Rock n Roll weddings, and so if you think you’re wedding fits the bill and she’s free on your wedding date (and it’s before 1st July 2012) she will come shoot your wedding for free!
Too good to be true? I think so! Quick…before she changes her mind!
“I started shooting weddings in 2010, after years of wondering whether or not it was wise to turn my passion for photography into a full time job,” Hannah told me. “Deciding to set up my photography business was the best decision I ever made. I love getting to know the couples I work with, becoming part of the family for the day and capturing the fun and emotion of the day.”
“My favourite weddings are those which are brimming with individuality and unique details, with couples determined not to plan a day full of what they’re told weddings should have, but to put their stamp on it and do it their way. I’m really keen to shoot more weddings like this and so I am very excited to offer Rock n Roll Bride readers free wedding photography. This includes up to 8 hours coverage, a complimentary engagement shoot, informal consultation and USB stick of all the final, edited files with a license for unlimited printing and sharing online for personal use. This would be perfect for couples planning a wedding on a tight budget, who hadn’t thought it was possible to stretch to booking a photographer. In return, I would have lots of examples of wonderful, individual weddings to use on my website and for advertising so that I can book even more of them in the future.”
“I am based in the Derbyshire Dales but more than happy to travel anywhere, provided that travel and accommodation costs are covered by the couple. This offer is open to weddings taking place before 1st July 2012 and you need to contact me by 31st December 2011, and will be eligible providing I do not already have that date booked. I would also like to offer Rock n Roll Bride readers whose wedding date might not be covered by this offer a 25% discount on all my packages when they contact me, quoting Rock n Roll Bride.”
For info on either one of these fabulous offers drop Hannah an email, telling her a little about your wedding plans to firstname.lastname@example.org NOW! Remember to include your names, wedding date and location.