Tag Archives: UK

Claire & Joe’s Beautiful & Funky New Forest Wedding

A Temperley dress, a skull handbag and a groom in Vivienne Westwood? Oh yeah, this is my kind of wedding! Claire & Joe’s wedding was held at Rhinefield House Hotel in the New Forest and was beautifully captured by photographer Lisa Devlin. Quite frankly this wedding is made for these pages, and so I’m more than a little bit thrilled to share it with you today.

“We knew we didn’t want to look like every other bride and groom and wanted to be ourselves,” the bride told me. “We took our inspiration from the 1930’s and although it wasn’t a theme it had a definite feel. One of the most important things for me as a make up artist was how to wear my make up which I did myself on the day. I love a strong rock n roll lip so I went for a dark 30s look using MAC Current lip liner all over with MAC Ruby Woo lipstick on top.”

“I saw the skull bag 6 months prior to the wedding and desperately wanted it but it sold before I could get it and so I spent the next few months trawling the internet to find it. In the end due to desperation I emailed the sales department on the website to find out if they knew how I could get hold of one. Although they don’t sell through the website they ended up sending one to my house from Paris for the wedding. Brilliant service!”

“Our wedding had  1930’s vintage feel,” she continued. “We used champagne coupe glasses that were popular in the 30’s. My dress had a bit of an Art Deco feel to it along with the cut glass perfume bottles that we used as favours for the ladies. We filled them with Jo Malone perfume to make them extra special.”

“My Mum, sister and I made and sourced quite a few of the objects at the wedding. My mum found the perfume bottles at a little shop near where she lives. We filled them, hand wrote the labels and tied with lace ribbon. The table planner was made from an antique frame that we added legs to to make it stand. We printed the names for the tables on card and as a weight hung crystals from an antique chandelier. Instead of a guest book we wanted something different and I little more magical so we had a wish tree. We put Corkscrew Hazel into on old bottle and asked people to write their wishes on labels and tie them to the tree. It looked so pretty by the end and everyone really enjoyed doing it.”

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Darren & Naomi’s Vintage Circus Wedding

The theme for Darren & Naomi’s romantic wedding was Vintage Circus. “We wanted a day packed full of fun, totally relaxed and whenever anyone thought back on it they would smile,” the groom told me. “The theme was a total surprise for all 200+ that were invited, with the first clue being as we walked down the aisle together as man and wife, and Entry of the Gladiators (the traditional circus theme tune!) was played by the organist.”

The ceremony was held at Clifton Cathedral, which with it’s dramatic architecture had been described by many as “a monstrosity of a building” in the past. However in recent times this building style has come right back in vogue and the building has  even just been used used for British design store Habitat’s most recent photo shoot.

“Following the Catholic ceremony (where we snuck in some Fatboy Slim by the organist), we travelled in a vintage Hillman Imp to the reception to be welcomed by a 11ft tall ringmaster,” Darren continued. “On arrival, guests were greeted with pomegranate Mojitos, English afternoon tea sandwiches and home made scones with lashings of clotted cream and strawberry jam. Each guest also had a welcome bag containing a red nose, home made moustache-on-a-stick, kazoo, fortune fish, popping candy, an invite to an after party and a CD with the soundtrack of the day.”

“Next to the main hall we created a ringside retreat with old black and white circus movies played on a projector, hay bails, typewriters to write us a message, cupcakes, home made lemonade, Original Viewmasters with circus 3D images and a suitcase full of circus props and toys. In the main hall, we made our own popcorn and candy floss stand, which was next to our own Face Cut out stand for people to poke their head through and have their photo taken. We also projected on to the wall the table plans, which included a picture of every guest which we had a red nose superimposed on their face.”

“As the evening went on, an old photobooth arrived for every guest to have their photo taken as our guest book, retro cocktails were made with glowsticks and slices of pizza and cake pops were served. Our first dance ended with all 220 guests joining in a mass conga round the room and finishing on the dance floor where people danced the night away, and then a magician did close up magic while our entertainer juggled knives.”

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Katie & Michael’s Glamorous 1920’s Wedding

Katie & Michael glamorous 1920’s wedding was held at East Close in the New Forest. The couple knew it was the venue for them as soon as they saw it – they didn’t even look elsewhere! Katie’s beautiful vintage dress came from Fur Coat No Knickers and she wore it with a marabou feather shrug from Queens and Bowl. The groom looked just as dapper with his bespoke King and Allen suit. Michael even sourced his own vintage buttons for his outfit from Button Queen and a haberdashers in Brighton. His vintage pocket watch was a gift from Katie.

“We wanted our wedding to be very ‘us’ and for everyone to have a really great time,” Katie told me. “It was brilliant – we just had all the stuff, the people and the music we love around us all day. We love art deco, the 1920/30’s swing era, mismatched stuff, sparkle… We’ve both worked in theatre and like a bit of drama. We made all our invites, place names, table names etc. Michael is a photographer so we tried to use lots of photography throughout. We just kept everything very casual and relaxed and friendly. We ignored everything people told us we should do and stuck to what we like – I think every wedding should be personal. We also wanted to make sure that everyone looked like themselves and felt really good. Michael hadn’t seen my dress but had said to me that he wanted to be marrying me as he knew me and not me looking like somebody different!”

The couple loved the mismatched look and so all the bridesmaids wore different dresses and the groomsmen wore different suits. The girl’s dresses all came from Coast, but each wore a different style and colours to individually suit.

The couple used to live in Brighton and has spent many a day lusting over the display in the Choccywoccydoodah cake shop. So when it came to planning their wedding, there really was no other choice for who they wanted to make their cake!

“Our tables were named after wine regions we had visited on our travels,” the bride continued. “Michael took me away to the Yarra Valley when he proposed and we sourced Innocent Bystander Pinot Noir for our wedding breakfast – this was the winery he took me to the night before he proposed and it is the most delicious Pinot Noir I have ever tasted. The tables were filled with antique pieces that we had collected from antiques markets and charity shops.”

“We wanted the tables to sparkle so they were filled with cut glass, silver and copperware. We also had photos on each table of our older relatives (who are no longer around) on their wedding days – the outfits they wore are incredible and there are some great hairstyles! I love pearls so I wanted strings of pearls and flowers to tie everything in together. I’m also quite obsessed with buttons and have a huge collection so our favours were small collections of vintage buttons.”

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Mark & Maryanne’s Summer Fete, Tea Party Wedding

Mark & Maryanne had their garden tea party wedding in Maryanne’s parents house in West Chiltington.The vintage vibe of the day with carried throughout with DIY, classic vintage and country garden ideas. The bride’s dress which was original vintage from The Vintage Wedding Dress Company. “I found a beautiful 1950’s dress that I had customised” the bride explained. “It originally came with a lace cape, but my fab seamstress turned the cape into sleeves and added a bit of sparkle with some old glass buttons that I found from a little junk shop in Sussex.” With this she wore Emmy Shoes, a customised vintage veil (made from a 1940’s hat) jewellery made from original vintage piece and bag from the 1950’s.

“Mark and I met in a little Indie club in London when we were 20,” Maryanne continued. “It actually took us nearly ten years and three children later to make the big decision TO DO IT. It really was my worst nightmare. I was so scared of all the white fluff and general fuss that came with a wedding. Our little family were ever so happy just as we were. To be frank we are all a bunch of geeks really and the whole wedding thing was just not us. We were a little gang that loved Indie music, books, cake, car boots and Crosswords. Definitely not weddings.”

“But then something happened and we totally changed our minds. We discovered that we could actually get away with doing a wedding OUR way… Other people were doing it so why not us? Planning the wedding then became a complete obsession and took over all of our lives. We had always had a passion for anything old, pre-owned and loved. Anything that had a history to it and that could tell a hundred tales, so involving this in our wedding just seemed natural. There was never a ‘theme’ or a ‘colour’ or anything really that shaped our day – it all just kind of happened, but it all seemed to work. Our only rule was to not try to turn ourselves into little manikins of something we were not.”

“Our first and most important decision was who we chose to make our lasting memories of the day – the photographer. Having studied photography at University, I knew that we really had to get it right. I found Viva Wedding Photography, on Facebook. I was nosing at a beautiful wedding they had shot and their images just looked so beautiful and unique. The shots were totally amazing and once we had met Adam from Viva we made our decision instantly. What a lovely guy! He was exactly what we were hoping for and proved to be so much more. Viva made our day special and unique and I will cherish my wedding photos till my very last breath. Another important decision was the car – we love Cadillac’s and I found a pink one which matched my Ray-ban’s so job done!”

“The Reception was held at my parents garden which suited our laid back summer fete/tea party feel. The guests arrived to Martinis, blinis and champagne from tea pots served by gorgeous girls in fabulous 1950’s aprons. We placed a selection of retro games around and laid out little tea sets for the toddlers to play with. I made a ‘Tattoo Parlour’ for the children and before long we had lots of mini Amy Winehouse’s looking super adorable. There were lots secret parts to the garden which were lit with old lace decorated jam jars and fairy lights. I made a ‘canoodling’ corner which had a love bench and lots of hanging hearts and wire birds made by Mark.”

“We chose a tent style marquee which I dressed myself with lots and lots of bunting, fairy lights and old birdcages,” Maryanne continued. “I stamped out all the guests names and bound them to the cutlery with odd bits of vintage lace. I made all the ladies lavender hearts decorated with lace and old buttons. The gentlemen received old comics from the 70’s and 80’s which were actually a little saucy – very amusing when the older generation of guests dared to have a peek. The children had little wooden dolls as favours which I found on eBay and I gave gifts of vintage brooches for friends that helped and retro toys for the Ushers. The tables were laid with my vast collection of vintage China – tea cups and saucers and cake plates all mis matched and all beautiful.”

“After a posh picnic style lunch we all enjoyed a pot of tea and lots of homemade cakes and French macaroons. After the speeches we had homemade bon bon’s and more tea, tea, tea, tea… We set up a ‘Photo booth’ area which I dressed with a floral throw and some wooden moustaches and speech bubbles. I love these photo booth shots, everyone’s personality really shines through. Ladies in all their finery and cheeky children with tache’s make great photo’s and memories!”

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Tory & Joel’s Two-Day Vintage & Rock n Roll Wedding

Tory & Joel’s two-day wedding makes my heart sing. These two totally different days worked so brilliantly for the couple. Both had a vintage and Rock n Roll vibe and I’m utterly thrilled to share them both with you today.

The couple were married at Marylebone Town Hall, London in an intimate ceremony on Friday 27th May. Tory wore a vintage dress by Armstrong Vintage and Joel wore a suit from Next . The couple chose not to have their reception directly after as they were dreaming of eloping, and having the ceremony separate to the reception party gave them this feeling without upsetting their family and friends!

“Part of us wanted to run away together and have a romantic eloping story to re-tell but in reality we both wanted our parents and siblings there at the ceremony,” the bride told me. “It turned out to be exactly what we wanted: incredibly romantic, very intimate and with our nearest and dearest there to squeeze our hands when things got a bit emotional.”

The reception was held on the 29th at West End Farm, Bedfordshire and certainly had the Rock n Roll vibe. The bride wore a second vintage dress from Love Miss Daisy and the event was a detail-perfect party for all their friends and family.

“Sunday was a flipping blast!” she continued. “We were very clear on this day: Get a barn. Fill it with fun. Have a party. We’d seen some beautiful wedding ideas (some of which we borrowed from Rock n Roll Bride in fact!) so took inspiration from them and added our own Very English twist. Highlights for me were the pony rides, watching our dear friend Miss. Jayne Hardy sing the Joel + Victoria mini musical and feeding our dog Glory a Mr+Mrs ice cream sundae. Woah fun!”

“Our theme for the reception was vintage village fete, so we really put our families to task in order to get that community feel about our day! My aunty made all the bunting, napkins and jam jar toppers. The whole family spent 6 months prior collecting jam jars, sourcing vintage lace to wrap around them and finishing with twine to give it a farmyard look. The card basket is actually my grandparent’s picnic basket found in their loft 2 months prior. And all the old couples pictures were gathered together to celebrate couples we’ve known in the past and present who represent marriage success stories. We wanted something to aspire to!”

“The drinks dispensers and Pimms beermat were great finds on eBay and Amazon had some irresitable red and white paper straws that we fell in love with. The cake was all about positivity and saying yes to each other, yes to the good and bad times and yes to the life ahead. Just say yes!”

Wow. I have serious wedding admiration right now. How about you? Check out the beautiful video from Sassy ‘n’ Frank too!

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Ronnie & Craig’s Cooler than Cool, Multi-Coloured DIY Wedding

Did you ever look at someone’s wedding pictures and know instantly that you would be friends if you met in real life? Well that’s kinda how I felt when photographer Emma Case sent me Ronnie & Craig’s wedding last week. I know it sound superficial and a bit weird but these guys have got style…and there ain’t nothing cooler than a couple that bring that unique style into their wedding. See what I mean….?

Let me lay a few things out for you to try and explain my obsession with these guys. So Ronnie & Craig were married at Trunkwell Mansion House, in Reading (READING!? You know that’s where I live right?!..And Reading isn’t a huge town or anything. This excites me.) They pretty much DIY’ed anything and everything they could including the reception décor, the cake, the flowers, the car (yes, really – Craig restored it for the wedding) the stationery (Be sure to check out Ronnie’s website to see more of her work) and the bride and bridesmaid’s dresses! Ronnie’s Mum who made the dresses from Ronnie’s design also just so happens to have trained Ian Stuart, who is arguably one of the biggest bridal designers in the country right now.

Ronnie even wore a plastic and sparkly “Mrs Dearsley” necklace. You get the picture right…?

“I am an artist and wanted to hand paint what I could,” Ronnie told me when I asked her about all these DIY projects. “I started with the invites and slowly developed a retro tattoo theme which continued throughout the wedding with the escort cards, table numbers and welcome sign. Now the wedding is over I intend to paint our vows into where there were numbers etc and display the work in our home. I really enjoyed working on everything and would love to work with other couples who might want custom artwork for their invites or any other aspect of their day.”

“We had a huge wedding DIY project with a difference. When we got engaged Craig said basically I could do what I wanted with the wedding as long as we could use his 1971 camper van. Unfortunately, after being screwed over by a restorer, the camper van was a (beautiful) shell and needed basically a new everything putting in. Our engagement was around 18 months long and I think Craig spent every weekend working on the van to get it going, it finally made its first journey 3 days before the wedding, but was AMAZING and gorgeous and I’m so proud of Craig for getting it together.”

“Our wedding was by no means wildly controversial but it was a true reflection of us,” she continued. “When we first got engaged I spent hours browsing wedding venue sites and freaking out about food as us and about 99% of our family are mad fussy eaters. To be honest, I had only attended one wedding as an adult so I was totally out of my comfort zone and was totally taken in by the prescribed way of doing things that seems to fill most of the wedding magazines.”

“It wasn’t until I snapped out of this and thought, “Hang the hell on – what do WE like to eat?” that I realised the wedding should be about US instead of set menus. When we got engaged we’d celebrated with a cream tea, and we are hard-core BBQ fans, and I know now both of these things might be pretty standard in the wedding industry, but they are totally what I’d eat everyday if I could and we shaped our day around them.”

“So we found a venue that would accommodate our wishes for less than a billion pounds (seriously what is that all about?) and went from there. Eventually (way too late!) I discovered blogs like Rock n Roll Bride and the endless sources of inspiration out there for alternative weddings and our wedding started taking shape. The one thing we did get from bridal magazines was our colour scheme. We were pretty uninspired by the limited colour palettes we saw in most wedding pictures, until we saw an Indian themed wedding full of rich, vivid colours and we knew that was something we’d like. It evolved during the planning to pink, purple, yellow and turquoise, I had to spray paint the bridesmaids shoes to coordinate!”

“Also I mentioned that we’d like mismatched china and my mum immediately went on a madcap mission around every boot sale in the country until basically her whole house was full of old crockery. A few days before the wedding we glued together some homemade cake stands after I’d see a tutorial on GMTV. Our ceremony was very us, our vows were from some of our favourite songs, our readings were daft and we walked out each of us carrying one of our kids, they were wriggling all the way but it was lovely to have them with us.”

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